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China is on track to see its installed capacity of non-fossil power generation surpass its coal capacity at the end of 2021 for the first time, a report said, while a separate publication showed the country did not fund any new coal-fired power plants through the Belt and Road Initiative in H1, also a first.
The EU’s power sector CO2 emissions rose 11% year-on-year in H1 but remain well below pre-pandemic levels despite a near-full recovery in electricity demand as cleaner forms of generation prevail, according to a report published on Wednesday.
UK’s “inconsistent, regressive” carbon pricing system needs reform to reach 2050 net zero -think-tank
The UK’s current carbon pricing measures are “inconsistent, regressive, unclear, and cannot put the country on the path to reach net zero emissions by 2050”, a think-tank said Wednesday, urging wide-ranging reforms to the system.
Germany-based utility RWE, historically the EU’s top corporate emitter, reported a 39% jump in its ETS-covered thermal power output for H1 2021 as demand rebounded following coronavirus restrictions.
The EU has committed €118 million to 32 small-scale carbon-cutting projects across 14 nations under its ETS-funded Innovation Fund, the bloc’s executive said on Tuesday as it announced the financing vehicle’s first awards.
EUAs drifted slightly despite firmer natural gas prices, as Russian state producer Gazprom declined yet again to book additional gas transit capacity through the Ukrainian network.
California gasoline usage increased for the second consecutive month in April, as consumer demand continues to skew back towards pre-COVID levels amid fewer state-level restrictions, according to state data released this week.
US biofuel credit (RIN) prices went on the upswing over the past week as traders pointed to a diesel arbitrage and gasoline import data as supporting factors for the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) market.
Octogenarian Oxford grad returned to jail for not repaying profits from forest carbon investment fraud
An octogenarian Oxford alumnus has been handed a longer prison sentence for not complying with a confiscation order to repay ill-gotten gains from an investment fraud related to the reforestation carbon market.
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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Delhi ditched it – Global efforts to tackle climate change suffered another setback this week as India – the world’s third-biggest emitter – was the only one of 51 invited nations that failed to attend a two-day ministerial meeting in London over the weekend, Bloomberg reported, citing people present at the summit who asked not to be named. The no-show followed India’s appearance at the preceding meeting of G20 environment and energy ministers, which failed to reach agreement on a phaseout of coal power.
Heat haze – Record-shattering events similar to North America’s recent deadly heatwave could soar in the coming years if little is done to tackle rapidly rising GHG emissions, according to a study published in the journal Nature Climate Change. Using climate models, the researchers find that such heat events could occur every six to 37 years somewhere in the northern mid-latitudes by the second half of the 21st century. (Independent)
All Rise – Private equity giant TPG on Tuesday said it raised $5.4 bln for the inaugural round of its TPG Rise Climate fund, making it the “largest climate-focused fund in the world,” according to the New York Times. The fund intends to take a broad approach to its financing, ranging from growth equity to “value-added infrastructure.” It will focus on a handful of wide sectors including clean energy, decarbonised transport, climate-friendly agriculture, and cleaner industrial practices. The fund is backed by major investors including Allstate, AXA, and The Hartford, but also corporate giants like Google parent Alphabet, Bank of America, Dow, GM, Nike, and others. (Axios)
Poll watching, part I – A poll from University of California, Berkeley’s Institute of Governmental Studies and Los Angeles Times showed 47% of likely voters support recalling Governor Gavin Newsom. The poll, which was released on Tuesday, found 50% of those surveyed backed the first-term Democrat, but the slim support was within the poll’s margin of error. An Inside California Politics/Emerson College reached a similar conclusion as it found 48% of likely voters backed Newsom, while 43% supported the recall effort. The recall election is set for Sep. 14.
Poll watching, part II – Nova Scotia NDP Leader Gary Burrill on Tuesday party will introduce a target of lowering GHG emissions 50% below 1990 levels by 2030 if it forms a government after the province’s Aug. 17 election. The ruling Liberal government said before the election campaign it was committed to reducing its GHGs 53% below 2005 levels by 2030 and reach net zero emissions by 2050. Additionally, Burill said the NDP’s more ambitious target will be achieved by whatever means are necessary, including potentially assigning a direct CO2 price, rather than the province’s existing cap-and-trade system. However, Premier Iain Rankin’s Nova Scotia Liberals have a nine-point lead over the right-wing Progressive Conservatives , a new poll from Mainstreet Research showed Monday. Burill’s left-wing NDP is currently in third place with 17% support. (Canadian Press, iPolitics)
If by Chance – Private equity firm Cresta Fund Management has agreed to buy a controlling stake in idled Canadian 135,000-bpd Come-by-Chance refinery, a fund representative said on Monday, with the aim of converting it to renewable fuels production. The first phase of the conversion would change the Newfoundland refinery to a facility capable of initially producing 14,000 barrels of sustainable aviation fuel and renewable diesel daily by about mid-2022. A second phase will seek to double the capacity of the refinery and incorporate the ability to produce green hydrogen. The refinery, owned by North Atlantic Refining Ltd, has been idled for more than a year, and the deal is expected to close in the third quarter. (Reuters)
Sixty to zero – Indonesia is optimistic of reaching a net zero emissions target by 2060 or sooner, Coordinating Minister for Maritime and Investment Affairs Luhut Pandjaitan told a virtual seminar. That would be at least a decade earlier than the 2070 date President Joko Widodo said in March for the world’s eighth biggest emitter and follows the country’s revised NDC submission last week that largely maintained its nearer-term target. The government plans to stop using coal, oil, and gas by 2060 and aims to have 85% of its energy needs from renewable sources and the rest from nuclear energy, according to a document Luhut presented. (Reuters)
Boiling over – Brits would be allowed up to five more years to swap out their dirty gas boilers in a major row-back plotted by PM Boris Johnson, who is looking at pushing back a ban on sales of all new gas boilers by 2035 after a furious backlash over spiralling costs, The Sun reports, citing an anonymous official. The finance ministry has also scotched proposals to issue millions of households with ‘green cheques’ worth hundreds of pounds to compensate them for making their homes greener.
FTX funds – The FTX Foundation Group, a collective behind a cryptocurrency exchange, committed Tuesday to spending a minimum of $1 mln this year to offset the environmental impact of cryptocurrency mining and storage. To meet this, FTX has already purchased 93,000 forestry-based carbon offsets from projects in the Americas from Pachama, and 7,000 VERs from African clean cookstove projects through BurnStoves. The new FTX Climate Program also committed $1 mln to make CCS a global solution, and earmarked $500,000 to three organisations working on research and policy initiatives relating to climate change: Giving Green, CarbonPlan, and the Good Food Institute.
Wet get go – The FT examines the potential for UK farmers based on carbon-intensive peat to rewet their drained land. The aim would be to plant willow reeds, which grow quickly in wet conditions, harvest the resulting wood, burn it in a way that minimises carbon emissions, and use the energy produced to power an indoor vertical farm where he will grow crops. The upshot would be that carbon is removed from the atmosphere while the peat stays intact.
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