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The EU carbon market is getting renewed attention from investors as supply-curbing reforms are touted to soon send prices back into double digits, though some are cautious about stocking up on allowances following a steep rally and as the looming market adjustments are still more than a year away.
A record 67% of new power capacity installed in China last year was from clean energy sources, while improved grid integration boosted on-grid wind power generation by over 75%, according to the China Electricity Council.
Australia’s proposed National Energy Guarantee (NEG) would create an inefficient and expensive market for emission reductions and force changes in the electricity market that will cost hundreds of millions of dollars and take years to implement, a report said Friday.
January traded volumes in China’s eight pilot carbon markets fell to less than a quarter of December 2017 levels as activity wound down ahead of the upcoming Lunar New Year break.
One of Britain’s last remaining coal-fired plants has announced it will close later this year after it failed to win a contract to supply back-up power in the country’s latest capacity market auction.
EU carbon prices dropped back below €9 on Friday after a weak auction and bearish energy complex fuelled negative sentiment ahead of greater supply pressures from government sales next week.
Finnish utility Fortum reported a 2.4% dip in its total EU generation over 2017 to 44.2 TWh from 45.3 TWh, with all output in the second half from CO2-free nuclear and hydro output.
Washington’s carbon pricing bill came one step closer to becoming law on Thursday after legislators voted to advance the measure out of the Senate’s Energy, Environment & Technology Committee.
The American Carbon Registry (ACR) has proposed a new methodology for earning voluntary carbon offsets from transitioning to advanced refrigeration systems that use less potent or damaging gases instead of CFCs, HCFCs, or HFCs.
Below is a table of the closing prices, ranges and volumes for China’s regional pilot carbon markets this week. All prices are in RMB, and volumes in tonnes of CO2e. Data sourced from local exchanges.
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Paris or bust – There will be no trade deal between the EU and US if the Trump administration follows through with its threat to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, a French minister said on Thursday. Speaking to parliament, foreign affairs minister Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne said: “One of our main demands is that any country who signs a trade agreement with EU should implement the Paris Agreement on the ground. No Paris Agreement, no trade agreement. The US knows what to expect.” Asked on Twitter whether she agreed with Lemoyne’s statement, EU trade commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom said: “Yes Paris deal reference needed in all EU trade agreement today.” It was in the deal finalised with Japan in December 2017 and will be in deals under negotiation with Mexico and the Mercosur bloc of South American countries, she added. A commission spokesperson told Climate Home on Friday that all EU trade deals contained a chapter on sustainability: “Since the deal we concluded last year with Japan, this chapter contains an explicit reference to the ratification and actual implementation of the Paris climate deal. (Climate Home)
Steel away – Vattenfall and its two partners have given the go-ahead to the HYBRIT project and will proceed with the planning and designing of a pilot fossil-free steel production plant in northern Sweden, according to Renewables Now. The Swedish state-owned utility has teamed up with steel products maker SSAB AB and state-owned mining company LKAB to develop a steelmaking process that emits water rather than CO2. The idea is to use hydrogen produced with electricity from fossil-free Swedish sources. Last June, the trio formed a joint venture and initiated a pre-feasibility study for the project. The analysis found that fossil-free steel would initially be 20-30% more expensive to produce, but will be able to compete in the market with traditional steel in future as the prices of electricity from fossil-free sources continue to decline and the costs for emitting CO2 rise.
Welcome to inefficiency – Renewable energy services company Arcadia Power has released data that ranks the energy efficiency of customers in 15 major US cities. Miami ranked as the least efficient, with Los Angeles and Atlanta coming in at #2 and 3, respectively. Chicago, New York and Denver were found to be the most efficient. Arcadia claims that the cities most at risk of feeling the effects of climate change are the least energy efficient. The survey was based on information gathered from 7,400 Arcadia Power customers living in 15 cities, according to the Miami Herald. (Utility Dive)
Polish common sense – Poland’s special climate envoy has said the world should put “common sense” above climate ambition at this year’s COP24 summit. Speaking to Climate Home, Tomasz Chruszczow, Poland’s top climate negotiator and 2018 UN climate champion, said a push to increase national pledges to stop the world warming more than 1.5C should not be the focus for the conference, which will take place in Katowice in December. Instead, states should concentrate on agreeing the rulebook for the Paris Agreement. “Instead of being driven by enthusiasm, let’s be driven by responsible common sense which is about poverty eradication, combatting hunger and security of energy supplies,” he said. (Carbon Brief)
This changes nothing – Singapore’s DBS has become the first bank in Asia to launch a climate policy, Eco-Business reported. The bank will put an end to funding new coal projects, but only in developed countries. It will continue to support coal in places like Indonesia and Vietnam, drawing ire from NGOs who claim that the policy announcement changes nothing.
And finally… “They cap, you pay” – An Oregon business group is launching a six-figure attack ad campaign against the state’s proposed cap-and-trade system. Priority Oregon won’t reveal its backers, but Renew Oregon, a coalition lobbying for the cap-and-trade legislation, said parts of the 30-second ad were “eerily similar to attack ads in California when they were trying to pass their programme”. Renew Oregon added that the ad’s claims about increased energy and food prices for consumers have been disproven and calls the ad “a signal that the opposition is getting desperate”.
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