Minister of Industry Össur Skarphédinsson and Minister of the Environment Thórunn Sveinbjarnardóttir announced this week that they would like to sell CO2 emission allowances in the future, which will be free until 2012.
“These issues are developing in Europe and we will most likely do whatever the EU countries decide,” Skarphédinsson told Bladid.
Sveinbjarnardóttir agrees. “I believe that a license fee should be paid for the right to use limited natural resources defined as public ownership.
A special committee is in charge of handing out allowances to companies for CO2 emissions next month. The committee has already received requests for permission to emit 14,112 tons of CO2 until 2012 but according to the Kyoto agreement, Iceland only has a quota of 10,500 tons for the next five years.
Magnús Jóhannesson, director of the Ministry of the Environment, said the government is permitted to sell ten percent of the CO2 emission quota, according to EU regulations, and the rest should be free.
However, the regulations are not valid for EEA countries, so Iceland’s government cannot charge for CO2 emissions until the regulations have been changed.