Climate protection makes sense and is effective only when all countries sign obligations they themselves have freely accepted, just and appropriate for their capacities – writes Leszek Juchniewicz, adviser to the President of Employers of Poland.
In his opinion, the EU Emissions Trading System in its current shape would cause unimaginable costs for Poland, numbering hundreds of billions of złoty.
– Changing the directive is in the interest of all social groups in our country, which is why the Social Dialog Council – where Employers of Poland are among the most active participants engaged for the good of Polish economy - addressed the issue. Now, one of the most important challenges is to reform the EU ETS. It was first discussed by the working team for economic policy and the labour market of the Council, but it quickly transpired that exchanging views on the emissions trade is not enough – writes Juchniewicz.
– Today it is hard to precisely estimate the costs, as neither the future prices of EUA certificates per one ton of CO2, nor the euro exchange rate are known, but asking the rhetorical question whether Polish taxpayers will be able to afford it is pointless anyway. We know full well that they will not. Concerns also arise with regards to economic growth rate and employment which will surely have an impact on the quality of life and welfare of Polish society – assesses the adviser to the President of Employers of Poland.
– The principles adopted in Paris gives as an opportunity for an individual CO2 reduction path, or at least a chance to ask for it. Of course mostly due to the fundamental role of coal in Polish energy industry – Juchniewicz reminds.
The expert also draws attention to the fact that Poland may benefit from another tool of climate protection, one that was highlighted at COP21: the absorption of CO2 emission by forests and reforestation, heretofore neglected by the EU.
Moreover, this issue was raised at the session of the Social Dialog Council were the views on the energy-climate policy and EU ETS were expressed in a common position of employers and employees.
– There is no reason to bow to pressure. We need a far less steep adaptation path, so that we may use our own resources. Therefore, we will assume responsibility for our energy mix, shaped in accordance with the principles of sustainable development and ensuring Poland’s energetic security rather than by fear of the omnipotence of the administration in Brussels – concludes Juchniewicz.