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The European Commission cleared 44 big-emitting industries to receive free carbon allowances for 2021-30, reducing drastically the number of eligible sectors but retaining big polluters such as steel, cement, and chemicals.
Australia’s emerging offset market may languish for the next year after the government budget released Tuesday halved climate spending and failed to replenish the Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF).
Australia is in pole position to lead the clean energy revolution and should put a price on carbon to realise that potential, said economist Ross Garnaut.
The Australian government has contracted around 20 million offsets from landfill gas projects, but 95% of those facilities appear set to stop generating carbon credits in 2021 after the Emissions Reduction Assurance Committee (ERAC) recommended their crediting periods should not be extended.
Traded volumes in China’s eight pilot emissions trading schemes fell by two-thirds in April compared to the same month last year, as the delay of the national ETS has seen many traders exit.
Higher production from Alberta’s oil sands over the coming decade will see the Canadian province break its own target to limit GHG emissions in the carbon-intensive sector, according to new research published Monday.
British Columbia has introduced legislation to scrap its near-term GHG reduction target and replace it with two interim goals en route to the province’s mid-century objective.
Biofuels groups have secured the year-round sale of 15% ethanol blends (E15) under the US Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) and avoided a price cap on Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs), lawmakers said on Tuesday, but several key questions about the programme remain unanswered.
EU carbon prices were steady on Tuesday to hold on to the previous session’s holiday-fuelled gains, as weekly auction supply tightens to one of its lowest levels in 2018.
German utility Uniper held back on its hedging of forward power output for the second quarter in a row, its results showed on Tuesday, in potentially bullish news for carbon.
The European Commission on Monday announced the long-awaited dates for 2018’s EU aviation allowance auctions.
CARBON FORWARD 2018
Don’t miss the 3rd annual Carbon Forward conference and training day – Oct. 16-18, 2018 in London.
Spend two days with top experts, players, and decision-makers from the global carbon markets as they address today’s most attractive opportunities and pressing challenges. And join us for the EU ETS pre-conference training day organised by carbon market experts Redshaw Advisors, where you will learn how to effectively manage your carbon risk ahead of the looming overhaul of the bloc’s emissions trading scheme.
Job listings this week:
- Senior Climate Change Policy Specialist, Green Climate Fund – Songdo, South Korea
- Consultant on carbon trading potential and feasibility study, UNDP – Beijing
- Senior Emissions Trading Expert, Human Dynamics – Balkans/Turkey
- Director, Kigali Cooling Efficiency Program (K-CEP), ClimateWorks Foundation – San Francisco
- Executive Director, Nexus for Development – Phnom Penh
Or click here to see all our job adverts
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Text punt – UN climate negotiators have failed to meet an unlikely goal of producing a negotiating text for the Paris rulebook at ongoing two-week talks in Bonn and with three days of the session to go. Pressure for an additional September session in Bangkok ahead of the deadline at the main December Poland summit now mounts. (Climate Home)
Adios Eric – New York’s probe of Exxon for potential climate fraud will continue despite the resignation of Attorney General Eric Schneiderman Monday night, a spokesman for the AG’s office confirmed to Climate Liability News. While not addressing the Exxon investigation specifically, NY Solicitor General Barbara Underwood said in a statement that “our work continues without interruption.” Underwood will serve as the state’s acting AG until the state legislature convenes to choose who will serve out Schneiderman’s term. Schneiderman resigned after a story in The New Yorker revealed that four women had accused him of assault. The #ExxonKnew movement to hold oil companies accountable for sea level rise and other impacts from climate change has lost a powerfully placed advocate, as Schneiderman had launched his investigation in 2015 with a subpoena seeking 40 years of records of Exxon’s climate research.
Actors wanted – Local actors were paid to appear at New Orleans city council meetings to show support for a gas-fired power plant, according to a new report. Investigative news site The Lens spoke to three actors who say they were paid $60 – with $200 given for a speaking role – to attend a public hearing in October to show support for Entergy’s power plant proposal, which was approved in March. A coalition of green groups filed suit last month to reverse the plant’s approval, claiming that community members opposed to the plant were turned away from meetings due to lack of space while supporters of the plant were allowed in early. The plant will be built on a FEMA floodplain in a primarily Vietnamese, Black and Latino neighbourhood. (Climate Nexus)
Tourism trouble – A new study has found that tourism contributed to 8% of GHG emissions worldwide from 2009 to 2013, up to four times greater than previously thought. The research, published in Nature Climate Change, shows that GHG emissions from global tourism rose to 4.5 billion tonnes of CO2e in 2013 from 3.9 bln four years prior, with the results possibly still underestimating the sector’s total impact since non-CO2 emissions from aviation were not factored in. Furthermore, the sector’s emissions could reach 5-6.5 bln tonnes in 2025 as wealth increases, particularly in rich countries, and roughly 15% of tourism-related GHGs are not covered by the UN Paris Agreement as they fall under international aviation and bunker shipping. (Carbon Brief)
Market MOU – The leaders of Oregon, Ontario, and Quebec signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Tuesday to signal the jurisdictions’ increased commitment to climate change mitigation. In particular, the MOU states that each sub-national body will work on market-based solutions to reducing GHG emissions and meet the goals of the Paris Agreement. Oregon’s twin cap-and-trade bills stalled in the legislature in March, though a bicameral committee has been created in the interim to bolster support for a carbon market push next year.
Gimme five – Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos announced Monday evening that his government will direct 5% of the proceeds from the country’s carbon tax to the Herencia Colombia conversation project. This initiative, developed in coordination with the WWF, seeks to provide long-term financing for the conservation of 20 million hectares of land on Colombia’s National System of Protected Areas (SINAP). Additional goals of Herencia Colombia include expanding the SINAP by 3.5 mln hectares, as well as building a model for territorial governance across nine different conservation mosaics.
Appropriations prioritisations – The US House Energy-Water subcommittee published its draft appropriations bill on Sunday night, increasing the amount of money slated for fossil technology research while slashing funds for renewable energy and energy efficiency. While the Department of Energy would receive a boost of over $500 mln for energy-related programmes – of which $58 mln is directed toward fossil energy technology research – energy efficiency and renewable energy initiatives would be cut by $243 mln. Nuclear energy is also posed for an increase of $128 mln. (Politico)
Power predictions – New natural gas capacity in the US will exceed renewables for the first time in four years, according to predictions from the EIA. Of the nearly 32 GW of new capacity expected to come online this year, 21 GW is projected to come from gas-fired sources, with wind and solar trailing behind at roughly 5 and 4 GW respectively. Still, almost all of the 2.084 GW of capacity added through Feb. 2018 has come from renewables. (Utility Dive)
Clovis out – Sam Clovis, a former Trump campaign aide who had been serving as the Agriculture Department’s liaison to the White House, is departing the department and will return home to Iowa, a USDA official told Politico. The president had previously nominated him to be USDA undersecretary for research, education and economics, where he faced backlash for his lack of science credentials and ultimately withdrew his name from consideration for that position in November. Greens had also particularly focused on Clovis for his comments that he did not believe in man-made climate change.
Another use for the brown stuff – A new company from Germany’s biggest lignite mining region, North Rhine-Westphalia, has developed a procedure that turns the brown coal traditionally used as a fossil fuel into a high-output fertiliser for plants, writes the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. While conventional humus production – where organic matter slowly decays into fertile soil – may take several years, the company Novihum converts lignite into humus granulate within just a few hours. (Clean Energy Wire)
And finally… Mr. Moustache – Thousands of internal EPA documents released on Monday revealed more of the controversial spending habits and travel arrangements of EPA head Scott Pruitt. While a collection of agency emails showed how EPA staffers worked to limit advanced public knowledge of where Pruitt would be appearing, a separate cache of documents detailed the specific threats Pruitt received to justify his security and first-class travel. This includes an incident where someone drew a moustache on Pruitt’s face on a Newsweek cover. Separately, senior White House staff members told the New York Times they are encouraging President Trump to fire Pruitt. While Trump has until now championed Pruitt, the officials say the president’s enthusiasm may be cooling because of the ongoing cascade of alleged ethical and legal missteps. Pruitt now the subject of at least 11 federal investigations, and some Republicans have called for his resignation. Since last month’s confirmation of Mr. Pruitt’s deputy, the former coal lobbyist Andrew Wheeler, White House staff members say they believe that if Pruitt is fired or resigns, Wheeler will continue to effectively push through Trump’s agenda to help the coal industry and roll back environmental regulations. (Climate Nexus)
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