CP Daily: Wednesday June 14, 2017

Published 23:22 on June 14, 2017  /  Last updated at 23:22 on June 14, 2017  /  Newsletter  /  No Comments

A daily summary of our news plus bite-sized updates from around the world.

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TOP STORY

EU Parliament agrees tougher line on non-ETS sector GHG cuts

The European Parliament agreed its position on extending the EU Effort Sharing Decision for non-ETS sectors beyond 2020, a stance substantially stronger than the original Commission proposal despite efforts to weaken ideas proposed by environment committee lawmakers.

AMERICAS

First ever offsets for rice cultivation awarded to US farmers, sold to Microsoft

Certifier American Carbon Registry has announced the first ever issuance and sale of offset credits from rice cultivation, a move experts believe could spur further carbon-cutting initiatives in US farming.

Forestry projects again take bulk of offsets in California’s latest bumper issuance

California issued 3.6 million offsets in its latest round, boosting the existing supply of unsurrendered credits by 8.4%, in the second largest handout so far this year.

RGGI’s supply-curbing ECR a “valuable addition”, seen having little impact on power prices -researchers

A supply-curbing mechanism being proposed for RGGI would help support allowance prices in the nine-state regional US carbon market while having a minimal effect on power prices or carbon leakage.

ASIA PACIFIC

Productivity Commission urges HK govt to chase carbon trading benefits, own market or not

The Hong Kong government should consider whether to set up its own emissions trading scheme or join mainland China’s market, according to a report by the HK Productivity Commission, which said that regardless, the financial centre should seek out the benefits of positioning itself as a hub for CO2 trading.

EMEA

EU Parliament’s Girling to continue as lead ETS negotiator

British MEP Julie Girling will stay on as the European Parliament’s lead negotiator on post-2020 EU ETS reforms after the chair of the European Conservatives and Reformists and other party officials rejected an effort by former rapporteur Ian Duncan to regain the post.

EU Market: EUAs dip back below €5 ahead of two-day auction pause

EU carbon prices continued their steady path this week, though the looming two-day auction pause was not enough to keep EUAs above €5.

BAVARDAGE

IETA managing director to join South Pole Group

IETA’s London-based managing director is leaving the emissions trading association to join consultancy, project developer and offset vendor South Pole Group.

ECOSYSTEM MARKETPLACE

Can this Swiss feed supplement do for cows what Tesla is doing for cars?

More than 1.5 billion cows graze this great earth, and each of them has four stomachs. That’s 6 billion bloated bags of good and bad bacteria, some of which aids digestion but some of which steals the cows’ half-chewed grass and corn and emits massive amounts of methane. Ecosystem Marketplace talks to an entrepreneur who is looking to develop offsets from a feed supplement that kills some of the methane-emitting bacteria in a cow’s gut while leaving the digestion-helping bacteria intact.

CONFERENCE

CARBON FORWARD 2017: Draft programme released

We’re excited to release the draft programme for this year’s Carbon Forward 2017 conference and training day.

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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD

Redoubling effort: Part I – Germany and the rest of Europe should redouble their efforts to fight climate change after the withdrawal of the United States from the Paris climate pact, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Tuesday. Merkel told members of her conservative party in the German town of Erfurt that the US decision would not stop those committed to protecting the earth from continuing their efforts, Reuters reported. “For us, it is clear that the Paris agreement is a cornerstone for cooperation in the world,” she told the event, which was livestreamed on Facebook. “I believe we must take even more decisive action in Germany and Europe to join forces to combat climate change.” Merkel said the efforts would pay off for humanity and would also spur economic growth.

That view was backed up most senior figures at a debate in the full EU Parliament in Strasbourg on Wednesday, with EU Commissioner Jean-Claude Juncker declaring that the Paris Agreement was not up for renegotiation. Centre-left S&D group leader Gianni Pittella said the EU now needed counter-measures against the US and to consider imposing duties against the country. “When faced with unfair competition, you need to do something, to fight back,” he said.

Push pause – The US EPA has proposed pausing an Obama administration rule on methane from oil and gas for two years while it reconsiders the regulation, The Hill reports.  Obama officials finalised the rule last May as part of a federal effort to cut pollution of methane. Drillers contend the rule would be costly and duplicative, while EPA boss Scott Pruitt sued against the rule while Oklahoma attorney general. He said in April that the EPA would formally review the rule, a lengthy process that could take years to complete. Such a measure is subject to lawsuits as well.

Battleground: Virginia – Virginia’s Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam won the Democratic nomination for the state’s governor on Tuesday, while former Republican National Committee chair Ed Gillespie was selected at his party’s candidate.  Northam has said he supports the executive directive signed by current Governor Terry McAuliffe in May to lay the ground work for cap-and-trade in the state. “I think Gov. McAuliffe was well within his authority to make that decision. In light of Donald Trump’s idiotic and disastrous decision to leave the Paris Agreement, it’s even more important for states to lead,” Northam told The Washington Pose earlier this month. Meanwhile, Gillespie opposes the idea, saying “it’s very bad policy in terms of trying to foster economic growth – high energy prices will not help us do that. In Southwest Virginia it would have a devastating effect in coal country.”  The state’s gubernatorial election will be held on Nov. 7.

Redoubling effort: Part II – The European airport sector has agreed to double the number of carbon-neutral airports from an original target of 50 airports by 2030, GreenAir Online reports. Currently, 27 airports have reached this status and at their industry’s annual congress that started on Wednesday, and a further 26 airports in the region announced their commitment to join them. The European airport association ACI Europe first launched its Airport Carbon Accreditation programme in 2009 and since then 116 European airports have been certified at one of the four levels, with carbon neutrality the highest. The programme has now been rolled out globally across all ACI regions with 190 airports now taking part.

Well DUH – Germany will miss its climate targets unless the next federal government steps up its efforts, according to non-profit environmental and consumer protection association Environmental Action Germany (DUH). In a list of 85 measures (in German) for the energy, heating and transport transitions, DUH called for the introduction of an EU CO₂ floor price and a federal climate protection law with sector emissions targets, and creating a regulatory framework for a swift coal exit. (Clean Energy Wire)

And finally… Carbon neutral toys – Global toymaker Hasbro has set a goal of achieving 100% renewable energy and carbon neutrality across its owned and operated operations worldwide.  It has already achieved its previous goal of 100% renewables and carbon neutrality in the US, and is looking to build on that.  Hasbro purchased 25,699 MWh of renewable energy certificates (RECs) to address 99.6% of its 2016 global electricity consumption, and carbon offsets to neutralise its GHG footprint. (Solar Industry)

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