CP Daily: Friday November 13, 2020

Published 02:05 on November 14, 2020  /  Last updated at 02:05 on November 14, 2020  /  Newsletter  /  No Comments

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

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TOP STORY

GCF waves through REDD projects as portfolio grows

The Green Climate Fund this week approved a $136 million payment to Argentina and Costa Rica for emissions reductions achieved over the last decade, growing its portfolio of forestry-based carbon projects.

INTERNATIONAL

New carbon fintech investment platform secures $4.5 mln in funding

A new fintech platform that aims to facilitate institutional and retail investment in carbon allowances has secured $4.5 million in new funding, adding to the expanding suite of ETS-focused vehicles as growth in ESG investing gathers pace.

EMEA

EU Market: EUAs lift above €26 as COVID optimism seals 3.4% weekly gain

EUAs climbed back above €26 after an early slip to a one-week low on Friday, notching a small weekly gain as optimism about a COVID-19 vaccine boosted sentiment even as Brexit doubts remain.

Researchers create improved model to predict EUA prices, guide low-carbon investment

Researchers in Australia say they have created an improved model to predict the future price of carbon allowances in the EU ETS and to use that data to guide corporate decarbonisation investment decisions.

EU utilities report hedging lag as thermal output drops

Major European utilities EnBW and Engie reported lagging hedging rates in their Q3 results on Friday, though the overall steep drop in EU thermal generation is likely to eclipse any bullish signal this may have provided for EUAs.

Netherlands approves increased flight ticket tax from 2021

The Dutch government has decided to push ahead with plans to introduce a flight ticket tax from next year, but backed down from levying it on cargo flights, the Netherlands’ Ministry of Finance said on Friday.

AMERICAS

California offset task force mulls final report extension, conflict of interest disclosure

California’s Compliance Offset Protocol Task Force (OPTF) may require more time to address public comments and craft its final report designed to spur carbon credit generation and future protocols, while the group looks to address concerns from academics and other stakeholders about committee members who may financially benefit from its recommendations.

Virginia’s RGGI compliance accounts to be issued in 2021

Virginia utilities will not receive RGGI compliance accounts until some time in 2021, with power generators set to operate under general market accounts until the state officially joins the Northeast US cap-and-trade scheme next year, a government official told Carbon Pulse.

ASIA PACIFIC

Australia Market Roundup: ACCU issuance comes back to normal levels

Distribution of Australian carbon credits returned to regular levels this week after a busier period, while experts told a webinar they expect any crediting under the Safeguard Mechanism to face restrictions.

Singapore firm hopes new LNG contract can drive carbon offset demand

Singapore-based Pavilion Energy this week signed a first LNG contract with Qatar Petroleum that quantifies the fuel’s GHG emissions from well to discharge port, which the company hopes can become a new industry standard and drive demand for carbon offsets.

CN Markets: Pilot market data for week ending Nov. 13, 2020

Closing prices, ranges and volumes for China’s regional pilot carbon markets this week.

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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD

Not gonna make it – The UK is on course to reduce its emissions by less than a fifth of what’s needed to meet interim climate change targets, according to data shared with Sky News. The think-tank Green Alliance says its analysis of current policies shows the longer-term goal of being net zero by 2050 is also in jeopardy. The government is shortly expected to announce a 10-point plan of action on climate change, but the Green Alliance says even proposed policies including bringing forward the banning of sales of new petrol, diesel, and hybrid cars wouldn’t be enough to get the government to even half of its interim reduction target. The Green Alliance says this year the government announced policies to reduce emissions by 47 Mt towards the interim 2030 reduction target – notably the expansion of wind and solar power. But it says that amounts to a 17% reduction of what needs to be done to meet the interim target.

Another week, another EU consultation – The European Commission on Friday launched four open public consultations on forthcoming revisions to all EU laws governing GHG emission reductions, including the ETS Directive, regulations on LULUCF and Effort-Sharing covering sectors not covered by the ETS, and CO2 standards for cars and vans. The Commission had on Oct. 29 released for inception impact assessment for each one of the bills, inviting the public for initial feedback. The consultations will be open until Feb. 5, ahead of legislative proposals expected next June.

Good CAP, bad CAP, part 2 – The European Commission has confirmed that it may withdraw its proposal for the reform of the EU’s massive Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) if it fails to align with the objectives of the European Green Deal. In an interview with Dutch TV RTL Nieuws, the Commission’s climate chief Frans Timmermans hinted at this possibility. The lead decision-makers of the European Parliament and the Council kicked off negotiations Tuesday on the CAP reform. As the holder of the competence to initiate legislation, the EU executive can use the threat of withdrawing its initial proposal as a last resort to influence the talks. Yet Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said in a letter to the Greens said that she is not considering a withdrawal. (Euractiv)

Verifiably confirmed – The European Commission has confirmed that UK-accredited verifiers are able to verify 2020 emissions for UK operators only, but not EU operators, the British government announced Friday. London previously indicated that the Commission had decided that as of the UK’s Brexit withdrawal date, verifier accreditations by the UK National Accreditation Body will no longer be valid in the EU. The UK government has also said operator holding accounts in the EU Registry will remain fully functional until Apr. 30, 2021, and participants’ appointed verifiers will still be able to log in to approve any emissions figures. UK-based verifiers will also retain access to their unique EU Registry accounts until that date.

Account on it – The Canadian government is set to introduce climate accountability legislation as early as next week to formally commit the country to its target of net zero emissions by 2050, CBC reports. The long-awaited bill will set out mandatory national five-year targets to cut emissions starting in 2025, but the legislation isn’t likely to include an enforcement mechanism to ensure those targets are being met, which PM Justin Trudeau’s administration previously promised. Instead, the task of coming up with tools to enforce nationally legislated emissions targets likely would fall to a net zero advisory group that the federal government has not yet established.

See you(th) in court – An Ontario court handed seven young climate activists a victory on Friday, with a ruling that their lawsuit against Premier Doug Ford’s government can proceed to trial. The applicants claim the Ford government’s weakening of Ontario’s climate targets in 2018 will lead to widespread illness and death, and violates Charter-protected rights to life, liberty, and security of the person. The decision is the first of its kind in Canada and comes just weeks after a similar legal action against the federal government was rejected. (National Observer)

No tax Tim – Tim Eyman, an anti-tax political activist in Washington who ran for governor this year, intends to pursue a ballot initiative in 2021 to block any attempts to implement a CO2 tax in the state. Eyman is pushing the initiatives with his political action committee Permanent Offense. Previous Washington state carbon tax ballot initiatives were turned down by voters in 2016 and 2018, and lawmakers have proved unsuccessful in their attempts to pass CO2 levy and cap-and-trade legislation over the past decade. (KXLY)

Friends in the sky – Microsoft, Alaska Airlines, and SkyNRG have entered into agreements whereby employees of the software giant will have the CO2 emissions from their air travel between Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and three West Coast destinations reduced through sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) credits purchased from SkyNRG. The funds from the credits will be used by SkyNRG to supply SAF produced by World Energy in California and delivered to the airport fuelling system used by Alaska Airlines. The three companies hope the partnership, the first of its kind in the US, will serve as a model for other companies and organisations that are committed to reducing the environmental impact of business air travel. (GreenAir Online)

Black Friday, indeed – The Black Friday shopping event – this year falling on Nov. 27 but normally lasting for several weeks – will create a surge in vehicle emissions, according to a report from price comparison website Money.co.uk. Lockdown brought an online retail bonanza, and this year’s Black Friday is expected to be the biggest ever. But CO2 emissions will spike as result of deliveries and it will be made worse because the concentration of demand to a short timespan overloads the capacity of firms to deliver in their normal way. While 85% of UK consumers plan to shop for Black Friday deals, just one in 10 said they considered the impact of their deliveries on the environment. (BBC)

It’s a deal – The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) has signed a strategic framework agreement with French oil major Total to explore joint research, development, and deployment partnership opportunities in the areas of CO2 reductions and CCUS. “The agreement brings together the best-in-class in low-carbon technologies from ADNOC and Total, and expands on the long-standing partnership and collaboration between the two leading energy producers across the full value chain,” the companies said. Under the terms of the agreement, ADNOC and Total will jointly explore opportunities to reduce CO2 emissions, improve energy efficiency, and use renewable energy for oil and gas operations. In the area of CCUS, the companies will further develop joint research into new technologies covering carbon capture, storage solutions, and enhanced oil recovery projects based on CO2 usage.

And finally… Contested science – Even if humanity stopped emitting GHGs tomorrow, Earth will warm for centuries to come with key tipping points already crossed, according to a controversial modelling study by researchers from the BI Norwegian Business School and reported in the nature journal Scientific Reports. Reactions from half-a-dozen leading climate scientists to the study – which the authors acknowledge is schematic – varied sharply, with some saying the findings merit follow-up research, and others rejecting it out of hand. (AFP)

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