Climate Action

Auctions of aviation allowances not to resume before June

Airplane in sky © iStockphoto

The Commission has written to the European Energy Exchange (EEX) requesting that auctions of aviation allowances should recommence only once there is clarity on the volume to be auctioned. Such clarity is expected no earlier than May 2013 as the volume depends, inter alia, on how many airlines operating international flights will make use of the derogation pursuant to the 'stop-the-clock' proposal, which is currently being considered by the co-legislators. Aviation allowances for the year 2012 will in due course be auctioned as aviation allowances valid for the 2013-2020 trading period. This letter, sent on behalf of the 24 Member States participating in the common auction platform, follows discussions with all Member States.

The UK has also written to its national auction platform operator, ICE Futures Europe (ICE) to confirm that it will take the same approach of only resuming aviation auctioning once there is clarity on the volume to be auctioned. Germany already auctioned 2.5 million aviation allowances in November 2012.

The 'stop-the-clock' proposal concerns a deferral of the enforcement of requirements under the EU Emissions Trading System for aircraft operators to monitor and report emissions, as well as to surrender allowances in April 2013, for emissions from flights into and out of Europe during 2012. Since the ETS Directive provides for 15% of aviation allowances to be auctioned, this deferral will significantly reduce the volume of aviation allowances to be auctioned. The derogation is optional, hence the volume to be auctioned cannot be determined before there is clarity as to how many aircraft operators make use of this option. Due to these extraordinary circumstances, the Commission and the Member States have concluded that the auctions cannot be conducted earlier than June 2013.

The Commission will provide more information about the volume and timing of the 2013 aviation allowances auctions in due course.