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EU climate plan in disarray as France opposes proposal for new carbon market


France is pushing back against the European Union’s proposal to launch a new carbon market for heating and road transport, a move that worries some other EU nations and that’s quickly becoming the most controversial part of a new climate plan.

Days after the EU’s ambitious plan to tackle climate change was announced, France began lobbying behind the scenes to water down or delay the new carbon market, a central plank of the bloc’s proposal, people familiar with the matter said. Several countries, including the Netherlands and Hungary, are also concerned about its social impact, according to EU diplomats with knowledge of the talks.

Along with other European leaders, French President Emmanuel Macron is struggling to balance climate targets with his own political constraints, Macron’s government could intensify its push against the carbon plan when France takes over the EU’s rotating presidency in January.

France’s goal, the people said, is to try and build enough support to either scrap the proposal or adjust it to make room for increased financial compensation for people affected by the spike in prices the measure is expected to trigger.

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