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High-integrity offsets and standardised over-the-counter contracts should factor into efforts to scale up the voluntary carbon market (VCM), according to a roadmap published Wednesday by UN climate finance envoy Mark Carney’s private-sector taskforce.
US President Joe Biden (D) issued a suite of climate-related executive orders on Wednesday including directing a speedy revision of the nation’s Paris Agreement NDC this spring, an effort to jump start his environmental agenda amid a closely divided Congress.
California minted just shy of 1 million new compliance offsets during its second issuance of the year, with an Oregon-based forestry project earning additional credits tagged as providing direct environmental benefits to the state (DEBs), according to data published by state regulator ARB on Wednesday.
Emissions output under Nova Scotia’s cap-and-trade programme in 2019 slightly overshot the initial allowance budget, while the provincial environment ministry on Wednesday set the auction dates and floor price for the scheme’s two permit sales this year.
Expanding the scope of the EU ETS to bring in shipping emissions will require a gradual adaptation period for shipowners to get used to the new system, industry representatives said on Wednesday.
EUAs bounced back from below €33 for the second straight session on Wednesday, as a late hike in oil prices helped lift the energy complex, while data showed the number of new participants in the market continued to rise.
An elder European Commission policymaker credited with helping guide the development of the EU carbon market has moved on from the Directorate-General for Climate Action (DG CLIMA), Carbon Pulse has learned.
New Zealand carbon allowances edged up in Wednesday trade to reach a new all-time high, as traders prepare for major policy and market developments in the weeks ahead.
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Arctic passage – Three LNG tankers have this month travelled the Arctic Northern Sea Route without icebreaker escorts for the first time as the window during which the waters are navigable has opened ever wider. Over the last three years Russian gas company Novatek has shipped LNG from its plant on the Yamal Peninsula in northwest Siberia to Asian countries, but until now was only been able to do so during the summer and autumn. (Independent)
Bridging fuel – Gas should be used as a bridging solution to produce hydrogen before green varieties made from renewable electricity become commercially available, according to a motion adopted in the European Parliament’s environment committee (ENVI). “We need a rapid transition to renewable hydrogen, but we also need a bridging role for low-carbon hydrogen” produced from gas with carbon capture technology to mitigate emissions, said Hildegard Bentele (EPP/Germany), the lawmaker who drafted the report. While this compromise gained majority backing from the big political parties, Green MEPs reluctantly voted against. The EU aims to be solely reliant on renewable hydrogen, but the European Commission has admitted it will support blue hydrogen – from abated natural gas – in a transition phase in order to break “the chicken and egg problem”. (Euractiv)
Mission creep – Over 400 companies across big-emitting industries have signed on to the Mission Possible Partnership, committing to work with competitors, investors, suppliers and buyers to devise “climate action agreements” across whole supply chains by 2024 to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. We Mean Business is co-organising the partnership with the Energy Transitions Commission, Rocky Mountain Institute and the World Economic Forum, with funding from Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’ climate-focused Bezos Earth Fund and Microsoft founder Bill Gates’ Breakthrough Energy fund. (Reuters)
C is for ‘costly’ – The COVID-19 pandemic could delay construction of the UK’s Hinkley Point C nuclear reactor by six months and raise its costs by £500 mln, according to its developer EDF Energy. The fresh delays are expected to take the cost of the UK’s first new nuclear power plant in a generation to £23 bln, EDF Energy said, and put back its launch to summer 2026. Hinkley Point’s costs have risen by £5 bln in the last five years. It will cost almost double the amount to build as first thought in 2008, and will begin generating power almost a decade later than the original start date of Christmas 2017. (Guardian)
New broom – Australia’s main opposition party is about to hand the climate change portfolio over to MP Chris Bowen, according to the Sydney Morning Herald. Mark Butler has held the position for the past few years, and has been one of Labor’s strongest proponents for ambitious climate policies and emissions targets. However, a loud faction in the party has been increasingly calling for party leader Anthony Albanese to lower ambition levels on climate so as not to alienate workers in the fossil fuel industry ahead of the next election, which will be held within a year’s time.
And finally… Games-for-thoughts – Some 64% of people see climate change as an emergency, requiring urgent responses from countries, according to the largest opinion poll yet conducted on tackling global warming among more than a million people in 50 countries and almost half aged between 14 and 18. The “People’s Climate Vote” was organised by the UNDP in conjunction with the UK’s Oxford University, distributing questions through adverts in mobile gaming apps. National responses varied from 50% to 81%, and was at 65% among US respondents. (BBC)
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