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Europe

Seven States Unprepared for EU Greenhouse Gas System

Seven EU states have still not submitted national plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to the European Commission - despite long overdue deadlines.

Seven EU states have still not submitted national plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to the European Commission - despite long overdue deadlines. Environment Commissioner Margot Wallström announced on Wednesday that Greece, Italy, the Czech Republic, Cyprus, Hungary, Malta and Poland have failed to send in their national plans against climate change. The national plans are part of the EU's "Emissions trading scheme" (ETS) whereby companies may trade allowances to emit greenhouse gasses. The system will enter into force in January 2005 and is seen by the EU as a cost-effective way to comply with the international Kyoto Protocol on climate change. "I am disappointed that some member states are slow in taking the measures necessary to ensure a smooth start of emissions trading next year," said Wallström. The Commissioner announced infringement procedures against Greece and Italy, but the new member states escaped legal action as their original deadline had been a month later. ( EUobserver.com)

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