Europe’s highest court ruled on April 28 that the calculation the European Commission uses to set the maximum amount of free carbon permits issued to industries is flawed. Discrepancies in the data provided by the bloc's 28 nations on new industrial installations led to the error, the court said. It gave the Commission 10 months to review the policy. The ruling will not be retroactive and will not affect the overall cap of the EU's Emissions Trading System, but it could lead to a slight cut in the share of free permits issued to industry from 2018. The case was originally brought into court by a group of refiners and chemicals companies who claimed that they were entitled to receive a greater number of allowances. The final verdict could reverse their position, as it may give them even fewer permits. The ruling could also impact proposals on reforming the cap-and-trade system after 2020, changing the amount of free permits put up for auction. In the scheme's current trading phase, which runs from 2013 to 2020, the majority of allowances are to be sold via government auctions, with most of the remainder given for free to industry. For the full story, see