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Brussels, 19 April 2010

Emissions trading: Commission accepts Polish national allocation plan for 2008-2012

The European Commission today took a decision on the new national allocation plan (NAP) submitted by Poland for distributing carbon dioxide (CO2) emission allowances for the 2008-2012 trading period of the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS). It did not raise any objections. The EU ETS ensures that greenhouse gas emissions from the energy and industry sectors it covers are cut in a cost-efficient manner, thus helping the EU and its Member States to meet their emission commitments.

Climate Action Commissioner Connie Hedegaard said: "I warmly welcome the decision by Poland to submit an allocation plan consistent with the methodology used for all other Member States. The Commission's decision has removed uncertainty for Polish companies and most importantly maintains the environmental integrity of the EU Emissions Trading System. I much appreciate the commitment of Minister Andrzej Kraszewski and his team in reaching this mutually satisfactory outcome"

In 2007 the Commission decided that certain aspects of the Polish National Allocation Plan (NAP) were not compatible with the EU ETS Directive (see IP/07/412). Poland brought an action for annulment against this decision before the Court of First Instance.

On 23 September 2009, the Court of First Instance annulled the Commission's first decision, and on 3 December 2009, the Commission appealed against this judgment on a number of legal grounds (see Questions and Answers relating to the Commission's appeals). The appeal is pending before the European Court of Justice.

In parallel, on 11 December 2009 the Commission adopted a decision rejecting the original NAP (see IP/09/1907). Taking into account the Court of First Instance's judgment, the new decision did not indicate what changes to the original NAP would be acceptable to the Commission.

As a result of the rejection, on 9 April 2010 Poland has notified a new NAP.

Reasons for not raising objections

The new NAP respects the terms of the Directive and is in line with the Commission decision of 2007. The plan maintains the total amount of allowances at 208.5 Mt per year. The only change to the earlier NAP concerns some technical rules governing the reserve of allowances not allocated to companies.

Therefore the Commission decided not to raise objections to the new NAP.

See full text of the decisions at:

Assessment of national allocation plans

National allocation plans determine for each Member State the 'cap' or limit on the total amount of CO2 that installations covered by the EU ETS can emit, and set out how allowances will be allocated to individual installations.

The Commission's task is to scrutinise Member States' proposed NAPs against the 12 allocation criteria listed in the EU ETS Directive (Directive 2003/87/EC). The criteria seek, among other things, to ensure that plans are consistent with meeting the EU's and Member States' Kyoto commitments, with actual verified emissions reported in the Commission's annual progress reports and with technological potential to reduce emissions. Other criteria relate to non-discrimination, EU competition and state aid rules, and technical aspects. The Commission may reject a plan in part or in full.

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