Government has made a single regulatory instrument for Phase III of the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS), which will be laid in Parliament this week. These regulations will be available on the Parliament website from next week. Government has published on the DECC website the Government response to the consultation carried out on these proposals and details of an ‘opt-out’ scheme for small emitters and hospitals.
These regulations simplify the legal requirements for UK EU ETS participants and replace 13 previous sets of EU ETS regulations with a single instrument.
Small emitters and hospitals have been given the opportunity to ‘opt-out’ of the EU ETS from 2013 into a lighter touch alternative scheme, which will address the disproportionately higher administrative costs faced by these installations.
The UK will also move to an enforcement system comprising solely of civil, rather than criminal sanctions.
This is the first major change to legislation by DECC as a result of the ‘red tape challenge’ environment theme.
For the UK the EU ETS remains the primary means by which we will meet our ambitious carbon emission reduction targets in the EU, and will help deliver two-thirds of required emissions reductions after 2012.
Greg Barker, Minister of State for Climate Change, said:
“By simplifying the regulations for Phase III of EU ETS, we will save companies money and time, while still allowing them to meet environmental goals.”
“This will mean that smaller businesses, who experience higher costs from complying with the current regulations, that chose to will also be opted out of the system from 2013.”
The new EU ETS regulations will come into force from 1 January 2013, the start of Phase III of the EU ETS.
Notes for Editors:
- Phase III of the EU ETS starts in January 2013. In preparation, Government has been revising existing UK regulations that implement the EU ETS in the UK to ensure that the legislative framework is in place to give force to new EU ETS provisions that take effect from 2013. At the same Government has sought to reduce the complexity and regulatory burden of EU ETS regulation on operators.
- The ‘red tape challenge’ is a Government wide campaign to work in partnership with the public to cut out unnecessary red tape in order to save businesses money and time. To date, 22 themes have been in the website ‘spotlight’, covering over 4,000 regulations. Over 28,900 public comments and over 950 private submissions to date have been received from business and the general public on how current legislation could be removed or improved. Results have been announced on 12 themes so far: Retail; Hospitality, Food & Drink; Road Transport; Manufacturing; Health & Safety; Employment Related Law; Environment; Equalities; Children’s Services; Rail; now including Energy. Significant commitments so far include:
* Reforms to environmental regulation that will save business at least £1 billion over 5 years while keeping important protections;
* A radical package of Employment Tribunal reforms that is expected to deliver £40 million of savings per year to employers;
* Scrapping or improving 85% of Health & Safety regulations; and
* Introduction of a universally portable Criminal Records Bureau check, which employers will be able to view instantly online from March 2013.
154 deregulatory changes have already been implemented, with 76 more to come by December 2012.