Spanish steel producers here criticise the US for taking only feeble action to reduce CO2 emissions from its steel operations, whilst the EU Commission has been significantly more active. There is some validity in the Spanish criticism: the USA, as well as many other countries, are very slow in taking action. The US government should be encouraging the EPA to move ahead.
SBB 7 July 2010 The Spanish steelmakers’ association Unesid is to ask the EU to suspend the adoption of new environmental rules affecting the industry,Steel Business Briefing learns from the association’s annual meeting in Madrid.
Costs are perhaps the most important factor in determining the success of players in the international steel market, and Unesid warns that the competitiveness of European producers could be undermined by any unilateral decisions, as European players compete with third country steel companies who do not have to meet similar regulations.
Spanish steelmakers are concerned, in particular, about the increasing number of regulations and plans for an emission trading system, which are considered “an important burden” for producers.
“Environmental issues are an important part of Unesid’s activities, but we face too many regulations which our international competitors do not have to meet,” Gonzalo Urquijo, president of Unesid, told the meeting.
According to Urquijo, the EU has committed to reduce its polluting emissions by 20% by 2020, while other commercial competitors, like the US, have only expressed an “intention” to limit such emissions by less than 5%.