CP Daily: Monday November 30, 2020

Published 01:13 on December 1, 2020  /  Last updated at 01:13 on December 1, 2020  /  Newsletter  /  No Comments

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

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TOP STORY

UN considers stopgap CDM deal to stave off Paris-era freeze out

UN officials are considering ways of temporarily maintaining the CDM into 2021, aiming to avert killing off the offset mechanism before countries decide whether it can transition into the Paris Agreement era.

EMEA

Talks to finalise EU Climate Law expected to drag into next year -sources

EU decision-makers will begin late on Monday the first round of negotiations over the European Climate Law, sources told Carbon Pulse, with talks expected to conclude in the first quarter of next year.

EU Market: EUAs soar beyond €29 on colder weather, recording huge 23% November gain

EU carbon jumped above €29 to extend their two-month high again on Monday as the energy complex rose on prospects of colder weather, adding to bullish sentiment stemming from an imminent tightening of EUA supply.

Carbon floor price will undermine, distort EU ETS, energy exchanges warn

The EU should avoid introducing a price floor in its emissions trading system as it would distort and undermine the market while making it difficult to link to others, a group of European energy exchanges has warned.

EU carbon market must include methane emissions from 2030 -NGO report

The EU should bring fugitive methane emissions from coal mines into the EU ETS from 2030 to curb their negative climate impact, a report released on Monday said, detailing output comparable to that of the largest installations covered by the bloc’s cap-and-trade system.

EU set to overachieve its 2020 emissions reduction target

The EU is on track to overachieve its 2020 objective to cut emissions 20% below 1990 levels, though progress at national level differs among the 27 states, a European Environmental Agency (EEA) report released on Monday found.

AMERICAS

California fuel consumption declines in August amid COVID-19 pandemic

California gasoline and diesel consumption dropped in August as the coronavirus outbreak continues to impact fuel demand across the Golden State, with traders concerned current restrictions may erode future sales and depress WCI allowance prices.

WCI emitters added length prior to Q4 auction results as speculators cut positions again

WCI regulated parties increased their California Carbon Allowance (CCA) length immediately before the release of the Q4 auction results as speculators reduced their position for the second consecutive week, according to US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) data published Friday.

New Brunswick seeks retroactive start for large emitter programme

New Brunswick is aiming to backdate compliance obligations under its provincial output-based pricing system (OBPS) once it is removed from the Canadian federal government’s ‘backstop’ mechanism, according to regulations posted last week.

New speculator registers in RGGI carbon market as prices remain at four-year highs

A Northeast US trading firm opened a RGGI CO2 Allowance Tracking System (COATS) account this week as speculators continue to flock to the power sector cap-and-trade scheme with allowance prices at four-year highs.

ASIA PACIFIC

Western Australia lets emitters off hook, backs carbon farming

Major emitters in Western Australia won’t face mandatory offsetting or other GHG requirements under the state’s long-awaited climate policy package released Monday, but the government did announce a modest carbon farming and land restoration programme.

ICYM

EU Commission confirms delay to 2021 free allowance allocations

The distribution of free EU carbon allowances for 2021 will be delayed until at least Q2 next year due to the protracted process to set ETS emissions benchmarks and calculate allocation quotas, the European Commission confirmed on Friday.

Swiss-EU ETS allowance transfer calendar for 2021 published

The EU and Switzerland has published the ETS allowance transfer window schedule for 2021, providing 29 one-day opportunities for units to flow between the linked carbon markets.

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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD

Power pressure – Big UK energy companies BP, Shell, National Grid, SSE, and Drax are lobbying Prime Minister Boris Johnson to match US President-elect Joe Biden’s clean energy ambitions and set a deadline to slash emissions from Britain’s power system to net zero, the Financial Times reports. The firms want the government to set the target ahead of the UN COP26 climate summit in Glasgow next year, following Biden’s pledge during the US election to decarbonise his country’s electricity system by 2035. While it has no absolute limits for the power sector, Britain has a binding economy-wide 2050 net zero target, with the latest five-year carbon budget targetting a 57% cut under 1990 levels over 2028-32.

Stress tests – Eurozone banks will be stress-tested on their ability to withstand climate change risks in 2022, the European Central Bank said Friday as it finalised a set of of guidelines on how banks should manage and disclose climate risks. The Frankfurt-based authority’s banking supervisory arm will provide further details during the course of next year, the ECB added. Currently, only 3% of banks are disclosing climate information that would fully match the ECB’s recommendations. (Politico)

Silver lining – Australia’s GHG emissions fell 3% in the year to June 30, government data showed Monday. The trend was in large part a result of the coronavirus pandemic and the ongoing drought, which has dampened carbon output in the agriculture sector, according to the Guardian. However, construction of new wind and solar plants have also contributed. Australia’s Paris target is to cut emissions 26-28% below 2005 levels by target, and after the latest data, Australia’s emissions are now 16.6% below 2005. However, discounting LULUCF, overall emissions in all other sectors are up by around 1% compared to the Paris base year.

Times like Deese – Joe Biden plans to announce Brian Deese, a senior climate aide late in President Barack Obama’s (D) tenure, to direct the National Economic Council inside the White House, Axios reports. During his time in the Obama administration, Deese helped craft the Paris Agreement, while he has been head of sustainable investing at asset management behemoth BlackRock during President Trump’s years in office. However, some groups argue that work with BlackRock, which has big fossil fuel holdings, should be disqualifying for a role in the Biden administration despite the company’s increased focus on climate.

There’s something about Mary – California Environment Justice Alliance and Friends of the Earth sent a letter to Biden’s transition team urging the new administration not to name ARB Chair Mary Nichols as the EPA Administrator. Nichols, who is leaving her post at the ARB at the end of the year, is rumoured to be among the candidates for the top environmental job. In their letter, the groups said Nichols had ignored their suggestions and opted to back politics favoured by industry. Some experts have questioned whether Biden would select Nichols if Republicans maintain a majority in the Senate, which will confirm the next administrator. (InsideEPA $)

Climate change crash – US taxpayers are backing more than $1 trillion in mortgages in areas most likely to be impacted by climate change, according to Politico. The federal government has been backing mortgages outside of the so-called “100-year floodplain,” potentially leaving the US on the hook for those loans if owners are unable to fix them after disasters. Lenders Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae are not properly accounting for those climate risks, experts said, adding that rejecting those mortgages could disproportionately impact low-income and disadvantaged communities.

Going to the chapel – S&P Global is buying IHS Markit in a $44 bln all-stock deal – this year’s largest merger, which will marry two of the world’s biggest financial data providers.  IHS Markit operates one of the main online registries in the voluntary carbon market, while both firms have energy news divisions and offer carbon market analysis services. IHS and Markit joined just four years ago, while S&P Global, which owns price reporting service Platts, became a standalone business in 2011 when its then parent McGraw-Hill carved out the division from its education business.

And finally… Green Queen – UK citizens will be encouraged to plant trees to celebrate Queen Elizabeth’s 70th anniversary on the throne as part of the charity-backed ‘Queen’s Green Canopy’ plan to create a greener country in honour of her decades of service. The plan aims to encourage UK communities, schools, councils, and landowners to plant native trees to help the environment and make local areas greener. (Reuters)

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