EU parliament committee drops 2019 carbon reform option: Sources

BRUSSELS (REUTERS) - Members of a European Parliament committee have dropped a proposal to start reforms to the EU carbon market in 2019, three parliamentary sources said on Tuesday.

The date was a compromise between a European Commission plan to start reform in 2021 and calls from major Western states, notably Germany and Britain, for a 2017 start. Coal-dependent Poland is leading resistance to change, and to any earlier move.

The parliamentary sources said, however, that the failure of the compromise could backfire on those opposed to reform and the committee could now vote in favour of the earlier, 2017, start for removing some of a surplus of carbon allowances that has depressed prices on the EU Emissions Trading System.

The sources, who asked not to be named, said Polish members of the centre-right European People's Party had insisted on the withdrawal of the 2019 compromise hammered out last week.

The vote is an interim one and is far from being the final say in parliament on carbon market reform.