The European Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) is one of the key policy instruments for reducing greenhouse gas emissions in Europe. The scheme covers around 45 % of European greenhouse gas emissions. Since the start of the third trading phase on 1 January 2013, around 12,000 stationary industrial and energy plants in all 28 EU member states as well as in Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein have been integrated into the system. In addition, air traffic within the EU has also been covered by the EU ETS since 1 January 2012.
German plant operators had to submit their CO2 emission reports for the calendar year 2019 to the German Emissions Trading Authority (Deutschen Emissionshandelsstelle - DEHSt) by 31 March 2019. Until 30 April 2019, they must now commit the allowances for emissions in 2018 via the corresponding account in the emissions trading registry in accordance with Section 7 (1) TEHG.
The certificates have reached a new high of approx. 27 euros per ton of CO2 emitted. In August 2017, the price was just under 6 euros per ton of CO2 emitted. A forward-looking purchase of allowances can therefore be worthwhile.
Those who do not purchase the certificates in time take a high financial risk. According to Section 30 (1) TEHG an offence against the duty obligation is occupied with a sanction of 100 euros per emitted ton CO2. According to the consumer price index for the reporting year, this obligation increases compared to the reference year 2012. The corresponding value for 2018 has not yet been determined. In 2017, the sanction was 104.06 euros. In addition, the obligation to surrender allowances remains. If they are not surrendered by 31 January of the following year, the allocation will be credited for the following year.
On 15 February 2017, the EU Parliament decided to tighten the EU ETS for the fourth trading phase of the EU ETS. In particular, the total of available emission rights in the period 2021-2030 will not be reduced by 1.74 % per year as before, but by 2.2 % per year. The reform is intended to ensure that greenhouse gas emissions in the sectors covered by the EU ETS are reduced by 43% by 2030 compared with the base year 2005.