Monday, 5 March 2012

ATH faces £42m cost of losing appeal over CO2 scheme

COAL miner ATH Resources was dealt a further blow yesterday when Energy Secretary Ed Davey dismissed the company’s appeal against being included in a carbon-reduction scheme that could cost it an extra £4.2 million in the next three years.

The Aim-quoted firm, which is based in Doncaster but has all four of its open-cast mines in Scotland, is already struggling against falling coal prices and rising diesel costs. Davey has ruled the firm must take part in the carbon reduction commitment (CRC) scheme, which forces big companies and public bodies to pay a levy if they are going to emit CO2 gas into the atmosphere.

ATH Resources, which posted a pre-tax loss of £5.8m for the year to 2 October, thinks the CRC breaches European Union laws and has vowed to fight it.

Chief executive Alistair Black said: “Whilst it is clearly disappointing that our appeal has been dismissed by the secretary of state at this stage, the outcome of ATH’s contention that the entire CRC scheme is contrary to EU law has yet to be determined.

“If the CRC scheme is found to be in contravention of EU law it will have a major implication for the operation of the scheme in its current form.”

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