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An emissions trading scheme with steadily tightening benchmarks and increased use of auctioning could cut CO2 emissions from China’s power sector by over 1 billion tonnes by 2035, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA)
The EU must tighten sustainability criteria for forest-risk imported commodities and introduce mandatory due diligence requirements, environmental campaigners said in a report published Wednesday.
EUAs hit an all-time high for the second straight day on Tuesday, but prices quickly fell back below €44 on losses put down to profit-taking.
Environmental justice, green groups aim for higher TCI prices and more equity principles in final Model Rule
Transportation and Climate Initiative Program (TCI-P) jurisdictions should raise the proposed fuel sector carbon market’s minimum and reserve tier trigger prices, while providing additional clarity and responsibility for equity advisory groups, environmental organisations wrote in public comments.
California’s WCI-linked cap-and-trade floor price is on track to rise near $19 in 2022 due to higher inflation in March, according to federal data released Tuesday.
Washington senators hold firm on transportation package link, legislative reauthorisation for LCFS bill
Five Washington state senators this week reiterated their support for significant changes made to a recently-passed low-carbon fuel standard (LCFS) bill, saying any final proposal must maintain its ties to a comprehensive transportation funding package and legislative reauthorisation to earn their backing.
More than 300 businesses and investors active in the US have called on President Joe Biden to deliver a Paris Agreement target that roughly doubles the previous commitment made under Barack Obama’s administration, according to a letter published Tuesday.
A modest CO2 price could help spur investment, bolster economic growth, and help the US meet long-term climate goals, with the mechanism having little impact on economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new report published Tuesday.
A carbon tax of $25/tonne could put a significant dent in Asia-Pacific greenhouse gas emissions, but would have to be raised to three times that level to be in line with a 2C or lower global warming target, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Australia’s Clean Energy Regulator has issued just over 230,000 carbon credits in a little less than a week, while the government has opened funding applications for its new biodiversity pilot scheme.
Shipbrokers are launching dedicated carbon trading desks or forging ties with market experts ahead of looming regulation and amid rising interest in mitigating the climate impact of their voyages.
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Polluter elite – The wealthiest 10% of people were responsible for almost half of the rise in global CO2 emissions between 1990 and 2015, according to the Cambridge Sustainability Commission on Scaling Behaviour. It said government policies should focus on the “polluter elite” in tackling the climate crisis. The authors want to deter SUV drivers and frequent fliers, and persuade the wealthy to insulate their homes well. (BBC)
Taking Liberties – All workers’ unions at Liberty Steel’s Ostrava plant in Czechia have issued strike warnings due to increasing concerns about its UK-based parent, GHG Alliance, which faces collapse following the bankruptcy of its main financier Greensill Capital, S&P Global reports. Ostrava workers are particularly concerned about an FT report citing anonymous sources that Liberty may try to secure spare ETS carbon allowances from Ostrava to cover a €100 mln shortfall at its Romanian facility. The unions say Liberty promised to use Ostrava’s ETS surplus to invest in two new furnaces by 2023. Read Carbon Pulse’s latest report detailing the latest ETS obligations and free allocations of both the Liberty facilities.
Make it a crime – An effort to turn ‘ecocide’ – the systematic destruction of the environment – into an international crime on par with genocide and crimes against humanity is gaining momentum in the EU, as a European Parliament report has called for the bloc to consider this idea. The provision was backed by most of the legislature’s political groupings in committee last month, which means it’s likely to be adopted by the full plenary later this month. That puts the EU way out in front of most other jurisdictions in an international bid to make ecocide a crime prosecuted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague. But the idea faces strong resistance from eurosceptic groups, as well as business and oil lobbies. (Politico)
Not a total deal – Total has signed an agreement with Uganda and Tanzania to start the construction of a $3.5 bln pipeline to export Ugandan crude oil to international markets, despite not having secured funding for the project. During a signing ceremony at the Ugandan State House in Entebbe on Sunday, Total and its partner CNOOC agreed to green light the production of oil in western Uganda and channel it through the 1,445-km East Africa pipeline to the Tanzanian coast. Yet the project hinges on Total and CNOOC securing $2.5 bln in international loans, and many believe the deal is still far from done as investors face pressure to move away from fossil fuels. (Climate Home)
Trash talk: UK edition – The UK ETS cap is too high and the scheme wrongly excludes waste incinerators, Britain’s High Court will hear on Wednesday and Thursday in a case against the government brought by UK climate campaigner Georgia Elliot-Smith. Read Carbon Pulse’s initial report on the issue and how the case could set a precedent for the EU, whose scheme also exempts waste incineration.
When Kerry met Zhenhua-lly – US climate envoy John Kerry’s planned visit to China this week will see him meet with his counterpart and long-time UNFCCC negotiator Xie Zhenhua in Shanghai. “[Kerry] will be focused on discussing climate and how we can work with leaders around the region to get control of … the climate crisis,” White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said, according to Reuters. A piece in the South China Morning Post reports that – according to “a person familiar with the situation” – Chinese President Xi Jinping is “likely” to take part in the US-convened Earth Day climate summit on Apr. 22-23, and this could “open up a narrow path to cooperation [on climate change] amid a deepening rift” between the two countries on other geopolitical matters. (Carbon Brief)
Trash talk: US edition – US carrier United Airlines said on Tuesday it has partnered with global firms including Nike and Siemens in an ‘Eco-Skies Alliance’ to finance use this year of about 3.4 mln gal (12.9 mln L) of low-carbon, sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) derived from trash. Though tiny compared with the 4.3 bln gal of jet fuel that United consumed in 2019 prior to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the amount triples the roughly 1 mln gal of SAF it has used each year since 2016. Chicago-based United did not disclose the cost of the plan, nor how much its 11 partners would contribute. It said the project gives customers a way to help reduce the environmental impact of flying beyond buying carbon offsets. (CNBC)
Wrong direction – New Zealand’s GHG emissions rose 2% in 2019, the government has announced, despite its efforts to put in place a zero carbon bill and reform the nation’s emissions trading scheme. The slight increase in 2019 was primarily down to the manufacturing and construction industries, as well as public electricity and heat production. (TVNZ)
Position-based positioning – An “exclusive” report on the front page of the Australian reports that a senior position has been created in PM Scott Morrison’s administration to “coordinate the government’s climate strategy and provide advice about emissions reductions”. The move is “raising expectations” that Morrison could “endorse a target of net zero by 2050 within months”, the paper adds, although it cites “government sources” saying that no official decision has been made on this target yet. Last month, former foreign minister and ambassador to Turkey and Israel, James Larsen, was appointed to the position of deputy secretary and climate coordinator, thereby “elevating the issue”. (Carbon Brief)
Jet set – Global Jet Capital, a Connecticut-based company that provides financial solutions for business aircraft, on Tuesday announced the introduction of its CleanFlight Carbon Offset Program. In partnership with Carbonfund.org Foundation, this new programme will provide Global Jet Capital clients with preferred pricing and a simplified process when they choose to offset the emissions related to their business aircraft through the purchase of verified carbon offsets, according to a press release.
When Nouveau, nouveau – Quebec-based graphite materials company Nouveau Monde on Tuesday announced its climate action plan, which will see the entity achieve carbon neutrality for its past, present, and future emissions. As part of this, Nouveau Monde will offset its historical emissions through a selection of VERs from landfill gas capture, biomass-based renewable energy, fuel switching, and energy conservation projects registered on the CSA Clean Projects Registry. Additionally, the company is partnering with entrepreneurial firm NEL-i to develop the first large-scale forest carbon stock enhancement project in Quebec to secure future VER supply. Since its founding in 2012, Nouveau Monde has emitted just under 2,200 tonnes of CO2e.
Burly barley – Researchers at University of California, Riverside are investigating how barley – a key ingredient in beer – survives in such a wide variety of climates, with hopes of learning what exactly makes it so resilient across climates. Barley was first grown domestically in Southwest Asia about 10,000 years ago and is grown around the world, from Egypt to Minnesota. Barley’s prime growing regions have shifted northward in recent decades as global temperatures have risen due to climate change caused by human extraction and combustion of fossil fuels. (Climate Nexus)
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