From The Australian.:
THE mining industry is urging the Rudd Government to abandon a plan to force companies to bid for all their greenhouse gas permits from the 2010 start date of its emissions trading scheme, to spare corporate Australia from shouldering the highest climate change costs in the world.
Outlining the position the MCA would put to the Government in its formal response to the ETS discussion paper, he said: “In fact, we would still have the toughest scheme in the world, because even the European Union only proposes to auction 20 per cent of its permits in the ninth year of its scheme’s operation.”
But conservationists warn that copying the EU’s slow start would be a disaster. “Auctioning only 20 per cent of permits would repeat the big mistake made by the European Union when they started, which was to give away permits, allowing the big polluters to take windfall gains by passing on the carbon price for which they were already being fully compensated,” Australian Conservation Foundation spokesman Tony Mohr said.
Much of the ETS effectiveness is based on covering as much of the carbon emissions as possible and auctioning as close to 100% of the permits as possible. Ross Garnaut has proposed 100% in his report.