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European steel group Eurofer blasts emission-reduction goal

Keywords: Tags  Eurofer, European Commission, greenhosue gas emissions, steel, Gordon Moffat, Elfi Middelbeek

LONDON — European steel association Eurofer has criticized a European Commission green paper calling for a 40-percent cut in greenhouse gas emissions from 1990 levels by 2030, arguing that such a target would make the European steel industry uncompetitive.

The commission released its 2030 Framework for Climate and Energy Policies for a 10-week public comment period March 27.

"It is exactly because of a complete lack of economically viable technologies that our sector cannot meet such a target," Eurofer director-general Gordon Moffat said. "The commission should be aware of this, since its own joint research center has confirmed this in its recent study on carbon dioxide emissions in the European steel industry."

Eurofer said the European Commission should have addressed the connection between climate policies and rising energy prices.

"Our industry needs full compensation for indirect costs caused by ever-more ambitious emissions targets (if it is) to stay globally competitive," Moffat said. Eurofer also called for the industry to be compensated for costs related to the promotion of renewable sources and related grid costs.

However, the association welcomed the commission’s openness to the possibility of exploiting shale gas reserves.

The European Commission will accept public responses to the framework policies through June 2 and plans to offer "more concrete proposals" in late 2013. 

A version of this article was first published by AMM sister publication Steel First.

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