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EUAs reached a new record high on Thursday as gas prices continued to rise and the market digested a leaked European Commission document that laid out proposed reforms to the EU ETS.
Carbon Pulse has hired two new reporters to expand its coverage of the world’s two largest carbon markets.
France must introduce new measures to combat climate change in the next nine months as the country is set to miss its emissions reduction targets, its top administrative court said on Thursday.
NA Markets: CCA prices retrace following Scoping Plan presentation as RGGI rises on compliance demand
California Carbon Allowance (CCA) prices edged down on thinner demand ahead of the US holiday weekend, while RGGI prices rose slightly as traders reported regulated entities sought out volume on the secondary market.
Australia Market Roundup: Offset code of conduct goes live, number of revoked carbon projects nears 200
Australia’s Code of Conduct for the carbon industry went live Thursday, as the Clean Energy Regulator has revoked yet another offset project, a fate shared by nearly a fifth of all the nation’s carbon credit schemes.
A global carbon market policy specialist at IETA is set to leave the business association after seven years to join intergovernmental organisation ICAP.
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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
The Argus Live: Carbon Markets and Regulation (15-16 July) conference is a 2-day virtual event that will provide participants with the latest pricing predictions, as well as updates on global policy and regulation within the carbon market. There will also be sessions focusing on the developments and opportunities in the voluntary carbon market. Hear from speakers such as DG CLIMA, EEX, ClearBlue Markets, CF Partners, BASF, Gold Standard, South Pole, Redshaw Advisors and many more. Carbon Pulse readers can receive 15% off their registration fee using the code CARBONPULSE15 at checkout. Register today
Cost of development – A new World Bank report estimates that the collapse of select ecosystem services provided by nature – such as wild pollination, provision of food from marine fisheries, and timber from native forests – could result in a decline in global GDP of $2.7 trillion annually by 2030. The Economic Case for Nature underscores the strong reliance of economies on nature, particularly in low-income countries. The report highlights that Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia would suffer the most relative contraction of real GDP due to a collapse of ecosystem services by 2030: 9.7% annually and 6.5%, respectively. This is due to a reliance on pollinated crops and, in the case of Sub-Saharan Africa on forest products, as well as a limited ability to switch to other production and consumption options that would be less affected.
We will protect you – The UK government has vowed to protect British consumers against the costs of phasing out GHGs after the Times newspaper said ministers have drawn up carbon-cutting plans that would raise the price of heating homes and running cars by bringing those sectors under the country’s ETS. Ministers plan to consult on this later this year. The annual cost of heating a home could rise by as much as £170, and the cost of running a car could rise by more than £100, the Times said, citing internal government estimates. A government spokesperson told Bloomberg that no decisions have been made yet on expanding the ETS, and that consumers will “always” be protected against increases to cost of living while transitioning to cleaner and greener sources of fuel.
No gain in Spain – Spain’s carbon emissions fell below 1990 levels last year, helped by more renewable energy, a drop in coal-fired power, and an economy slowed by the pandemic, a statement released by the environment ministry said on Thursday. Carbon emissions fell 13.7% in Spain in 2020 from 2019 levels to 272 Mt, about 6.4% less than in 1990, the statement said. The amount of electricity generated in the country fell 3.6% in 2020 as a result of the restrictions imposed on businesses to curb the COVID-19 pandemic. However, carbon emissions fell a full 35% as renewables jumped 13% and coal was partly phased out. (Reuters)
Friendly farmers – Germany is striving for social consensus on the climate-friendly transformation of agriculture with a commission that has brokered a compromise between the stakeholders involved. Environment minister Svenja Schulze said the commission’s compromise could lay the groundwork for a broad consensus akin to that brokered by Germany’s coal exit commission, which resolved the dispute about the fossil fuel technology’s phase-out by bringing various stakeholders together. She said the commission’s final report after 10 months of negotiations will be presented to Chancellor Angela Merkel on July 6. (Clean Energy Wire)
Lender leverage – The EBRD multilateral development bank will stop investing in upstream oil and gas projects by the end of 2022 as part of plans to align its activities with the Paris Agreement following board approval this week. It will continue to finance select projects in the midstream and downstream sectors. (Reuters)
Only way is up – Australia ranked last of 193 countries ranked on climate action in the latest Sustainable Development Report, produced by the UN-backed Sustainable Development Solutions Network, RenewEconomy reports. The levels of emissions in exported products and progress towards implementing an effective carbon price were among the metrics where Australia scored poorly.
Or just stay where you are – Just as that report came out, so did news that the federal government has awarded a A$175-mln loan to Pembroke Resources to develop a large metallurgical coal mine in Queensland. The loan will be given by the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility. (ABC)
More of that thing – Reducing Scope 3 emissions is on Japanese oil and gas company Inpex’ list of climate targets, and the company this week announced an agreement with a second regional gas company to deliver carbon neutral LNG. Kiryu Gas in Gunma prefecture has signed a deal with Inpex to buy an undisclosed amount of LNG with carbon credits attached, which will be sold on to its customers. Inpex signed a similar deal with Nihonkai Gas in May.
Lawyering up – A group of more than 300 lawyers sued the New Zealand Climate Change Commission and Minister for Climate Change James Shaw on Thursday for providing advice to the government on carbon reductions that contained significant mathematical errors. Lawyers for Climate Action NZ argue that the commission’s advice does not comply with current legislation and understates necessary GHG cuts. In the suit, they claim the advice from the commission applied carbon reduction targets from 2010 levels to New Zealand’s gross emissions, rather than its net emissions. The Climate Change Commission declined to comment. (NZ Herald)
Concrete ambition – Cemex, North America’s biggest concrete producer, has vowed to slash CO2 emissions by 40% before 2030 and to eliminate them by 2050. Cemex may have a harder time than some firms, however, because construction codes in the US don’t allow many alternative cement ingredients that could lower manufacturing emissions. Sceptics of the industry pledges say the companies are relying largely on CCS that remains unproven and uneconomical and relies on the cooperation of regulators, architects, builders and consumers. (Reuters)
Paving the way – Several publicly-owned and investor-owned California-based firms are among the top utilities that are progressing toward clean energy and modern grid goals, according to a new report from Smart Electric Power Alliance. The non-profit advocacy group listed Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, Pacific Gas & Electric, Sacramento Municipal Utility District, San Diego Gas & Electric, and Southern California Edison in its Utility Transformation Challenge leaderboard. All of those utilities are regulated under the state’s cap-and-trade programme and renewable portfolio standard, with some taking steps to divest from out-of-state coal resources in recent years. (Utility Dive)
We’ll do it live – Reno will become the first US city to track real-time energy use and emissions output in an effort to combat climate change impacts, state and local officials said at a press conference covered by The Nevada Independent on Thursday. Governor Steve Sisolak (D), Washoe County Chair Bob Lucey (R), and Reno Mayor Hillary Schieve announced the partnership with Ledger8760 to track the city’s GHG output. Sisolak said the innovative step would enable the city to better track its carbon footprint and understand the impacts of those emissions. “This is how we fight climate change and protect our state,” he said.
Save the date – California Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis set the gubernatorial recall election for Sep. 14 on Thursday, with potential candidates having roughly two weeks to decide whether to challenge Governor Gavin Newsom. The first-term governor is facing a recall election after a GOP-backed proposal garnered enough support during the COVID-19 pandemic. Numerous Republicans have vowed to run against Newsom, but experts anticipate the governor surviving. Democrats had been pushing for an earlier election due to fears that high winds later in the year could cause wildfires and power outages in the state, potentially reducing Newsom’s chances of winning. Even if he is victorious, Newsom will be on the ballot again in 2022 as his current term expires. (LA Times)
Better than sunscreen – Battling to save northern Italy’s Presena glacier from further shrinking, climate experts are covering it with long strips of cloth which will reflect the sun’s rays and prevent the snow beneath from melting. They say about 70% of the snow can be saved over the summer with the protective covering which works in the same way as a silver reflective guard placed in a car window to stop overheating. Atop the glacier and surrounded by stunning wide peaks, a team unfurls 5-metre-wide and 70-metre-long strips to cover some 120,000 square metres of the glacier. The task takes a month to complete, and the process has been carried out every year since 2008. (Reuters)
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