UK steelsuppliers have been left unimpressed by a European Parliament vote, whichpassed plans to ‘backload’ the sale of carbon permits in light of the recenteconomic cycle.

Carbonpermits were originally designed to allow energy-intensive firms to pay fortheir emissions, but due to recent slower economic activity, an oversupply ofCO2 permits has developed.

A vote todelay or ‘backload’ the auction of further permits was narrowly passed by theEuropean Parliament – which says the decision took into account the risk offirms relocating outside of Europe in response.

But UK steelsuppliers have expressed their unhappiness with the decision, with industryrepresentative organisation UK Steel saying more support is needed forenergy-intensive industries.

Ian Rodgers,director of UK Steel, says: “Backloading … is really only a short-termsticking plaster, and will do little to get the changes in place that areneeded.”

Rather than riskdriving companies out of Europe to friendlier economies overseas, Mr Rodgerssays more support should be available for UK steel suppliers and producers toinvest in long-term climate change technologies and reductions in greenhousegas emissions.

This, hesays, would help “to achieve our overall ambition of tackling climatechange globally”.

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