European Union Emissions Trading Scheme Accounting Essay

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Today, the world faces a big problem that results from the emission of the gases, such as: carbon gas. These emissions result from the transportations, factories, oil refineries and burning as shown in Fig.1. These emissions give more problems, such as: bad breath and global warming. The world, especially the developed countries move to solve this problem through enhancing the specific plans. These plans were put through the related conferences of the interested countries (industrial countries). From those, the Europe Union (EU) who puts many plans and schemes. EU is big union which contains a big number of industrial and developed countries that contribute in the emissions.

Fig.1: pollution emissions [1] 


Surely, the first of this scheme starts through observing the effects these emissions on the climate change. Human community observed this climate change which make problems to him through the bad breath due to the CO2 emissions and greenhouse gases and the rise in the temperature. This makes the UN to put the mechanisms for reducing these effects in 1992. In 2005, the EU has developed the largest company-level schemes for trading the emissions of carbon dioxide CO2 through building on the mechanisms of UN in 1992.( European Communities, 2005 ). The main point in the EU scheme is the allowing for the companies to use credits from Kyoto's project-based mechanisms, clean development mechanism (CDM) and joint enhancement (JI). That assists them to comply with their obligations under the scheme. That shows that the system doesn't only provide a cost effective means for EU industries to eliminate their emissions but also gives additional incentives for businesses to invest in the emission reduction in the developing countries and Russia. This scheme concentrated on the big industrial emitters that produce a half of the EU CO2 emissions.

The development of the EU ETS with the experiences in this scheme appears clearly concerning with the developed counties such as USA, as shown in the following points (Ellerman.A & Joskow.B, 2008):

Suppliers quickly analyze the price of the emissions allowance and take it in their prices.

The laws of one price rapidly prevail after the rapid appearance of the public allowance exchange.

Scheme Aims

This scheme aims to reduce the combined emissions by 8% from 1990 levels until the end of Kyoto protocol's the first period 2008 through the 15 members then with the participation of the other 10 countries in the scheme except Cyprus and Malta. (European Communities, 2005).


In the first period from 2005-2007, the scheme concentrates on the CO2 emissions from large emitters in the power and heat generation and other sectors, such as: combustion plants, factories and oil refineries. Fig.2 states the sources of the greenhouse emissions in the EU in 2001.

2Fig.2: Sources of Greenhouse emissions in the EU in 2001

According to the limited scope, there is a 11500 installations in 25 member states that are covered accounting for 45% of the EU emissions total of CO2 and 35% of the overall greenhouse emissions.

( European Communities, 2005 )

The key stakeholders:

Owners of the industrial facilities

Transportations processes that results a big emission relatively due to the big existence of the it in all place in roads through buses and cars, in sea through ships and in the atmosphere through plan.

Governments who play a role for controlling the processes through policies and plans following the implementation of it, take the results and put the recommendations and treat the demand.

EU and the international associations these associations assist the developing countries through putting the policies and the plans with the assist by the developed countries, follow the implementation, show the results and put the recommendations. Also, there are problems such as the climate change related to this subject and to the countries not to one country, so the role of is it to find the common solutions. These solutions solve the problems with the best plans, experiences and take the scientific solutions that does not exist in all countries. In additionally, there is a need to control the whole processes in the coordination role. The main aim of this is to protect the people and animals from diseases.

Association of friends of the environment that play a role of monitoring the environment status, following the implementation of the policies, awareness the people with the pollutions that occurred and what they can do. Also they can gathering data through environmental programs such as: GLOBE program, analyze the results, put the recommendations and provide them to the scientific associations and the interested associations.

People and the animals who are the key characters that are influenced by the pollutions. And from that , the associations make meetings to solve this problem.


This scheme has the following key points in the Kyoto protocol according to ( European Communities, 2005 ):

All allocations plan are the target states that are members of the Kyoto protocol.

These allocations of installations must take in consideration its potential to reduce their emissions.

After each calendar year, installations should surrender a number of allowances equivalent to their verified CO2 in that year where as the allowances cannot be used for more than one time.

These allowances can be saved for the next year or sell them.

There should be take a permit for each installation in the ETS from the authority for all six greenhouse gases.

Permit is another thing not as the allowances where as the allowances is the scheme's tradable unit while the permit set out the emission reporting after emission monitoring.

Allowances held in the electronic accounts in the electronic registers that established by the member states.

The legal framework doesn't determine how and where the allowances should take place.

The price of the allowance is settled by the supply and the demand as in any market.

Evaluation of polices applied

The traded volumes have been raised during the first half of the year 2005 where the transaction reached about 90 million EU allowances; 65.6 million for brokered, 15 million traded bilaterally and 10.2 million traded on exchanges. ( European Communities, 2005 )

Fig.3: Traded Volumes(million tons) [3] 

As the survey shows, the trading volumes increases which give a big indicator about the interest of the problem in the Europe Union in all countries and the dimensions that took in the market and trading.

According to the market data research, the RWE, E.ON and Vattenful were considered as the three biggest CO2 emitters of the EU ETS during the year 2009. These emitters respectively emit in 2009 141 MtCO2, 94 MtCO2 and 91 MtCO2.

( Carbon Market Data publishes the EU ETS Company Rankings 2009 ).

Table.1: EU ETS Company Emissions Ranking (Mt CO2) [4] 


Verified emissions


Distributed allowances











In this year, the Vattenful ranked as the fifth largest producer in the Europe and 100% was owned by the Swedish state, so the emissions raise in 2009 by 6 (Mt CO2) year-on-year.

ArcelorMittal (43 million EUAs surplus), Corus (13 million EUAs surplus) and ThyssenKrupp (11 million EUAs surplus) were considered as the highest surplus of the Europe Union carbon allowances (EUAs) in 2009. In 2008, the world's largest steel maker gained a 21 million EU allowances. At this time, the price of EUA is 15 EU per ton of CO2 , so the selling in 2008 and 2009 of the ArcelorMittal as an example reaches 960 million Euros for the total surplus of it. (Carbon Market Company PDF, 2010 ).

The most of the surpluses come from the steel and cement sectors of exactly ten companies. The sharp increase of EUA leads to the expected decrease in the steel sector of six companies in 2009 by 30% as in 2008. And the same wrong occurred to the cement sector of four companies through decreasing of 21%. (Carbon Market Company PDF, 2010 ).

Fig.4:Cement pollution [5] 

As an example, the RWE has in the first period ( 2005-2007 ) of the scheme about 10 million allowances per year. In early 2008, RWE planned to spend about €5-7.5 billion for covering its expected shortfall of emissions allowances in the period of 2008-2012. And it allows to use the Certified Emissions Credits ( CER ). There are three companies that have the biggest number of the Certified Emissions Credits

( CERs ). These companies are vattenfall of 6.7 million CERs, PGE - Polish Energy Group of 6.1 million CERs and the Enel of 5.3 million CERs.


The main aim of the trial period was developing the infrastructure and providing the expertise to get a successful use of the cap-and-trade system to limit the European emissions beyond 2008.

The significant reduction wasn't intended in the trial period from 2005-2007.

The electricity sector was affected by the unexpected raise in the natural gas price.

In this period, the functioning market developing in allowances effortlessly was been without the any prodding by the governments of the member states or the commission.

The price of CO2 emissions was determined through taking in consideration the trading infrastructure of the of the market, registers and monitoring, reporting and verification and the significant segment of the European industry.

The EU ETS is developed not only to be as engaging possibility in the 2000 green paper ( EC, 2000 ) but also, is characterized to be as the flagship of the European climate change. (Ellerman.A & Joskow.B, 2008 ).

The EU ETS gives some visions in the problems that be faced in constructing the global GHG emission trading.

In the multinational system, the participating nations will revert back with the significant discretion in deciding tradable national emission caps with some negotiation.

The arrangements of trading transfers, reporting after monitoring and verification are the procedures for will be nationally managed with common standard.

7. Recommendations

As this report shows, the following points can be resulted as recommendations:

1- There should be a bi-directory role of the carbon trading for playing a central role in the delivering the emissions reduction; the government level should take the responsibility for limiting emissions. On the other hand at the emitter level, the emissions trading systems should cap the emissions and trade allowances.

2- There should develop a network for the linked ETS not as a single global emissions trading system.

3- Cap and trade should complement other policy tools to make a real actions for reaching a low carbon economy.

4- All the related sector in the ETS scheme should take in consideration in the national plans.

5- These develops should link to the science to get a best developing and for the far vision, to get a best results and economy status for the scheme.

6- the Clean Development Mechanism should be developed to reduce the uncertainty.

7- Shipping and international aviation sectors should have a transnational system to eliminate the emissions.

8- The developed countries should commit to eliminating their surplus of emissions.

9- The experiences in this scheme should be given to the other countries.

10- The ETS of the Europe Union should be linked to the other ETS such as in the USA.

11- the developed countries should assist the developing countries to face the resulted problems of the emissions.

12- The developed countries that have an advanced mechanisms in the forestry sector should fully participate in the forest communities.