Carbon capture and storage technology will be unviable unless it is reclassified as a green technology under the European Union’s (EU) Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), members of the European Parliament (MEPs) said this week.
Current EU legislation excludes carbon capture and storage from the emissions trading scheme because stored carbon will not be classified as an emission.
Labour MEP for Wales, Eluned Morgan, a member of the EU’s industry, research and energy committee, said: "Currently, CCS is not classified as an emission, and therefore not tradable.
"The carbon price has to be very high for it to be attractive as an economic option, and it is hard to believe emission trading will make this possible.
"If the technology becomes available, then legislation is needed – this is not the kind of thing to be solved through the market."
Conservative MEP for south west England & Gibraltar, Giles Chichester, agreed saying CCS needs to benefit from the emissions trading scheme in order to be adopted.
"To be sustainable we need novel technologies like CCS."
Phase one of the European ETS completes this year.
The next phase starts in 2008, with emissions from internal EU flights included from 2011.
Phase three will begin in 2012, but the EU has yet to determine what form the scheme will take after then.