LONDON - A steel plant in northeast England due to close in January will likely get its 2010 quota of free European carbon permits, a windfall worth around 100 million euros ($147.3 million), the UK government said on Friday.
The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) had said on Wednesday the 7 million European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) permits, equivalent to one percent of Britain's annual greenhouse gas emissions, could be auctioned with revenues going to government coffers.
But DECC on Friday said the plant in Teesside is likely to get the permits next February, despite the fact that owner Corus, Europe's second largest steelmaker, announced last Friday that the plant will be mothballed and 1,700 jobs cut.
Whilst ETS activities continue at the site, it is likely that Corus will retain its free allocation and no allowances will return to the Government, a DECC spokeswoman said in an email to Reuters.
(Reporting by Michael Szabo; Editing by Anthony Barker)