The Italian Almanac


Italian News - May 26

European Union regulators on Wednesday ordered a 9 percent reduction in air pollution allowed by permits that Italy is giving industry, seeking to ensure companies buy some allowances as the EU emissions-trading market nears completion.

"Italy has accepted our arguments and significantly cut the number of allowances," the EU environment commissioner, Stavros Dimas, said. Companies that exceed their limits must buy permits from businesses that emit less or pay a 40, or $50, penalty for each extra ton of gas, creating an incentive to cut pollution.

The EU said that Italy must also scrap a provision enabling future changes to the number of permits for individual installations. The EU trading system is aimed at the most common greenhouse gas and is part of the bloc's fight against climate change under the global Kyoto Protocol.