European Union

Billerud Karlsborg AB v. Naturvardsverket (EU Court of Justice, 2013)

Jurisdiction: European Union


Principle law(s): EU Emission Trading Scheme (EU ETS) (Directive 2003/87/EC establishing a scheme for greenhouse gas emission allowance trading within the Community and amending Council Directive 96/61/EC)


Side A: Billerud Karlsborg AB (Corporation)


Side B: Swedish Environmental Protection Agency (Government)


Core objectives:

Challenge penalties for failure to surrender emissions allowances


Summary
The Swedish environmental protection agency, imposed penalties on the Billerud companies for failing to surrender credits under the EU Emissions Trading Scheme in 2006. The Billerud companies challenged the penalties arguing that since the failure was due to an internal error and the companies had a sufficient number of allowances at the time, they should be excused. The European Court of Justice (CJEU) found that under Directive 2003/87/EZ, penalties for failure to surrender credits still apply even if the entity held a sufficient number of allowances at that time. In addition, the CJEU found that the penalty was a lump sum and may not be varied by a national court on the basis of the principle of proportionality.
Case documents

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