World Bulletin / News Desk
Australia will scrap its planned floor price for carbon emissions and will link directly with the European Union's emissions trading scheme by 2018, Climate Change Minister Greg Combet said on Tuesday.
Australia, one of the world's highest per capita emitters of pollutants blamed for causing climate change, imposed a fixed A$23 ($23.88) per tonne carbon tax on around 300 of its biggest polluting companies in July, covering around 60 percent of emissions.
The A$15 floor price was due to underpin the scheme when it moved to a floating emissions trading scheme in July 2015.
The cut to the floor price is the first major change to Australia's controversial plan to price carbon following concerns from businesses facing higher costs than in Europe.
"Linking the Australian and European Union systems reaffirms that carbon markets are the prime vehicle for tackling climate change and the most efficient means of achieving emissions reductions," Combet said in a joint statement with European Commission for Climate Action Connie Hedegaard.
The move means business in Australia will be able to use EU allowances to cover Australian liabilities from July 2015 but European companies will have to wait until 2018 to use Australian allowances.
Combet said business had made it clear they wanted more flexibility on the carbon price once Australia moves to a trading scheme.
"At the end of the day, I think this is the best public policy outcome," Combet told reporters, adding Australia was continuing negotiations on linking its scheme with New Zealand's emissions trading scheme.
In contrast to the Australian prices, carbon permits in the European Union are currently trading around 8.16 euros a tonne ($10).
Combet said Australia would also impose a new limit on the use of eligible Kyoto units. Companies will still be able to meet up to 50 percent of liabilities with international units, but will only be allowed to meet 12.5 percent of liabilities with U.N. backed Kyoto units.
The price on carbon emissions is Australia's key policy to fight greenhouse gas emissions, blamed for global warming. Australia is one of the world's highest per capita emitters due to a reliance on coal-fired power stations.
Beijing Automotive Group Co (BAIC) chairman Xu Heyi said over the weekend the company will phase out sales of conventional cars in Beijing by 2020 and nationwide by 2025, according to the official Xinhua news agency.
Shazam, which identifies songs from short excerpts, likely to be rolled into Apple’s mobile device software
Turkish defense minister in London says 'there will be no delay'
Local tech start-ups in Gaza Strip must work around Israeli blockade; open borders could boost their opportunities
Activists and tech leaders including Tesla's Elon Musk have called on the UN to ban fully-automated weapons systems that could revolutionise warfare while putting civilians at heightened risk.
Tweet capacity doubled in almost all supported languages
AkinSoft company starts mass production of human-robots named 'Ada GH5'
Tapanuli Orangutan is latest discovery of great ape species since nearly a century
Muhammed Ahmed Faris, first Syrian cosmonaut, been living in Turkey for last 5 years
Apple's newest device, set to go on sale November 3, is designed to be unlocked with a facial scan with a number of privacy safeguards -- as the data will only be stored on the phone and not in any databases.
Although third quarter results showed ongoing losses and a dip in revenue, the upbeat outlook sparked a pre-market gain of 10.8 percent for Twitter.
Search engine shows Asik Veysel playing baglama
2-day congress and fair will host thousands of delegates, high level bureaucrats and CEOs in Ankara Congresium Center
Spy can easily track activities with $1,000 mobile advertising purchase
The project, which was first announced more than two-and-a-half years ago, would be the biggest private investment in western Ireland.