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Almost 380 million more carbon allowances will be withdrawn from the EU ETS through next summer and inserted into the MSR, the European Commission announced late Wednesday in its annual ‘TNAC’ update, with the market’s oversupply increasing by 14% last year largely due to the pandemic.
EUAs continued their record-breaking run on Wednesday, with prices jumping nearly 5% to above €55 after a strong pre-holiday auction and as investor inflows continued to build as trading data showed the number of reporting participants in the futures market rose to a record 900 firms.
Power and industry will face the highest increase in ambition under Germany’s amended Climate Change Act adopted on Wednesday, though analysts believe the impact on EU carbon allowance demand can only be determined once the bloc’s carbon market reforms are undertaken.
The UK government has lowered the trigger price for the mechanism to control spiking allowance prices in the country’s new carbon market.
Spanish utility Iberdrola reported a 25.5% drop in its remaining EU ETS-covered generation in Q1 on Wednesday, continuing its rapid decarbonisation and diminishing need for carbon allowances.
Macquarie’s London-based head of environmental products has gone to Goldman Sachs, Carbon Pulse has learned, while his counterpart at Morgan Stanley’s is taking his place at the Australian investment bank.
Two fraudsters were convicted by a British court on Wednesday for scamming vulnerable victims out of £36 million in a ‘boiler room’ fraud operation based on the voluntary carbon market.
California’s WCI-linked cap-and-trade floor price is on pace to rise above $19.00 next year as inflation surged over April amid easing of COVID-19 restrictions across the US, according to federal data released Wednesday.
California regulator ARB’s offset issuances hit a two-month high this week as it minted nearly 500,000 new credits, but the year-to-date volume slipped beneath last year’s level, according to data published Wednesday.
Australia will spend A$280 million ($219 mln) over the next decade to buy carbon credits from large industrial facilities cutting emissions below their Safeguard Mechanism baselines.
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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
On the lend – The US Federal Reserve has asked lenders to start providing information on the measures they are taking to mitigate climate change-related risks to their balance sheets, four people with knowledge of the matter told Reuters. The previously unreported supervisory discussions highlight how US watchdogs are moving to execute President Joe Biden’s agenda to incorporate climate risk into the financial regulatory system, with potentially major ramifications for Wall Street. Fed officials have not dictated the parameters for the analysis but have made it clear they expect lenders to conduct the internal risk-management exercises and hand over the data, the people said. That analysis includes testing the geographical exposure of bank assets to physical risks such as flooding, drought and wildfires, as well as testing exposures to different sectors, such as how oil and gas loans may perform versus renewable energy loans.
Standard stand-off – Left-wing climate activists are stepping up their opposition to policies from top Democrats promoting nuclear energy and CCS, signalling a tough debate as President Joe Biden’s administration advances legislation to curb power sector emissions. Hundreds of environmental and grassroots groups, including national groups such as Friends of the Earth, Center for Biological Diversity, and the Indigenous Environmental Network, sent a letter to lawmakers Wednesday calling on them to pursue a national standard requiring 100% renewable power by 2030. It’s a rebuttal to the clean electricity standard policy favoured by the Biden administration, top House Democrats, and many more centrist environmental groups that calls for carbon-free power by 2035 but allows resources such as nuclear energy, CCS, and even natural gas to play a role in meeting the requirements. (Washington Examiner)
EV does it – Electric vehicle giant Tesla is seeking to enter the US Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) market, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters. The electric car maker is one of at least eight companies with a pending application at the EPA tied to power generation and renewable credits, the sources said. The EPA produces a list of pending applications with some details, but not companies’ names. President Joe Biden’s administration is expected to review the EPA applications and lay out how electric vehicles could qualify for tradable credits (RINs) under the RFS this summer.
Port support – Oil major Chevron is investing an additional $20 mln in Clean Energy Fuels Corp.’s Adopt-a-Port Initiative in California. Chevron has now invested a total of $28 mln in the initiative, which provides truck operators – large fleets and owner-operators – serving the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach with cleaner, carbon-negative renewable natural gas (RNG), to reduce emissions. In addition to providing funding for Adopt-a-Port, Chevron supplies RNG to Clean Energy stations near the ports. (Bioenergy Insight)
Drill droppers – NGO-backed activists have applied for a judicial review of the British government’s Oil & Gas Authority strategy to maximise the economic recovery of the UK’s remaining reserves. They will argue that this objective is irrational in light of the UK’s 2050 net zero emissions target and fails to take into account the advantageous tax regime that applies to the North Sea, which includes reliefs for decommissioning. (FT)
Guaranteeing a battle – The conservative-dominated French Senate voted to weaken a constitutional commitment to “guarantee” the fight against climate change and to preserve biodiversity, setting it on a collision course with the lower house that may jeopardise prospects for a referendum. It took issue with a proposal in draft legislation that the constitution “guarantee” the fight against climate change, preferring wording that was less binding than the version proposed by a citizen panel. (Reuters)
Air, land, and sea – The European Commission on Wednesday presented an action plan on zero pollution for air, water, and soil. The plan sets key 2030 targets to reduce pollution at source, such as improving air quality to reduce the number of premature deaths due to air pollution by 55%, improving water quality by reducing waste, plastic litter at sea, and microplastics released into the environment, and improving soil quality by reducing nutrient losses and chemical pesticides’ use by 50%.
Lao, for now – Laos has submitted a revised NDC to the Paris Agreement, building on its sectoral pledges made in 2016. The document outlined a baseline scenario derived from 2000 net levels of 51 MtCO2e that reaches 82 Mt in 2020 and 104 Mt in 2030. It set out an unconditional 2030 target of a 60% cut beneath that from the land use and energy sectors, which the government said demonstrates an enhanced contribution “considering the 34%” already achieved to 2020. It set out additional conditional measures, including vastly expanding forest cover, which it said would require $4.76 bln via “innovative financial mechanisms”. Check Carbon Pulse’s NDC Tracker for an overview of the previously-submitted and updated NDCs.
Poultry protocol – US enviro-tech company CleanBay Renewables on Wednesday announced it is working with offset registry Climate Action Reserve (CAR) to establish an N2O avoidance framework and methodology for carbon credit accounting associated with fuel and fertilizer derived from poultry manure. will initially focus on quantifying the emissions reductions from the conversion of agricultural by-products, like poultry manure, into controlled-release fertilizers. The team will also establish mechanisms to calculate the displacement of fossil transport fuels through the use of agriculture-derived RNG.
Sizing up – Forestry company Woodbois has increased the size of an equity fundraising to receive £6 mln, up from a proposed £5 mln, amid strong demand. Chief executive Paul Dolan said the fundraise will provide seed capital for the company’s fledgling reforestation and CO2 sequestration unit. Woodbois announced the new division earlier this year, saying it has identified an “attractive commercial opportunity” to deliver reforestation projects in Africa as well as generating carbon credits for corporate actors in the expanding voluntary carbon market. (Proactive)
Born as Ghost Forests – Long-delayed but ultimately triumphant, designer and sculptor Maya Lin’s stark commentary on climate change finally opened Tuesday in Manhattan’s Madison Square Park. “Ghost Forest” has transplanted and “resurrected” 49 Atlantic white cedar trees killed by saltwater infiltration in New Jersey’s Pine Barrens to the park, where they’ll remain through Nov. 14. Although the 40-to-50-foot-tall trees might seem mighty, they were all felled by salt deposited into the soil during Hurricane Sandy in 2012. Now they stand “planted” in Madison Square Park but bereft of leaves, and the dichotomy between the living trees surrounding them and Ghost Forest will only become more evident as the weather warms. (The Architect’s Newspaper)
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