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Chinese Carbon Emissions Allowance (CEA) units closed a notch higher on Thursday compared to a week earlier although trading volumes fell by more than 80% over the week as access to the registry remains open to only a dozen or so entities.
EUA prices surged to a new one-month high early on Friday as natural gas led a market-wide rally in energy and the daily auction cleared in line with prevailing spot market prices.
The EU ETS-financed Modernisation Fund has made its first €300 million in payments to three Central and Eastern EU nations to help finance six decarbonisation projects, the European Commission announced on Friday.
Oregon’s Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) released a draft cap-and-reduce programme rulemaking on Thursday that sets allowance allocation levels for natural gas suppliers, along with methodologies for other regulated parties under the market-based scheme.
WCI regulated entities increased their California Carbon Allowance (CCA) cumulative position this week as the July contract expired, while speculators maintained holdings amid rising prices on the secondary market.
A summary of legislative and regulatory action on carbon pricing, clean fuel standards, and clean energy at the US subnational and federal level this week, including developments in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and California.
The tech sector favours expensive carbon removals as part of its voluntary climate action to help drive essential technologies to scale, according to a new intermediary focused exclusively on sourcing those types of carbon credits.
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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Degrees of separation – A new major report from the UN-backed IPCC scientific panel is due to be published on Monday, pulling together the most recent advances in climate science eight years after its last full update. There is little doubt that the planet will reach 1.5C of warming – and sooner than previously thought, according to sources who have seen the penultimate draft. A table under review projects the increase in global surface temperature for five emissions scenarios, ranging from wildly optimistic to unimaginably reckless. In the draft, the IPCC identifies best estimates for twenty-year periods with mid-points of 2030, 2050 and 2090. Earth’s temperature is projected to hit 1.5C or 1.6C around 2030 in all five scenarios — a full decade earlier than a similar prediction the IPCC made less than three years ago. (AFP)
Forest funding – Germany’s environment ministry has published a position paper proposing a new funding model to link payments for climate protection performance for forest owners with ambitious biodiversity standards. The idea adds to the ongoing debate in federal parliament and with the agriculture ministry on how carbon uptake by forests can be rewarded in the future. The ministry proposes focusing forest transformation on near-natural mixed forests with predominantly native species, taking more forests out of use, and securing 5% of Germany’s forested area for natural development. (Clean Energy Wire)
Eni more gas – Italian energy group Eni has reached an agreement to deliver a ‘carbon neutral’ LNG cargo to Taiwan’s CPC Corporation, with the gas sourced from Eni’s Indonesia facilities and the entire value chain of the shipment offset through the retirement of “high-quality, nature-based credits” and certified by the PAS 2060 standard. (Reuters)
History cuts clean – US Democratic Sens. Chris Van Hollen, Sheldon Whitehouse, and Ed Markey want oil companies to pay to combat climate change and help foot the bill for the forthcoming $3.5 trillion budget resolution. The climate hawks unveiled legislation Wednesday that would require companies responsible for at least 0.05% of the world’s CO2 and methane emissions from 2000 to 2019 to pay into a fund for climate resilience programmes and clean energy technology. The lawmakers say the measure would raise $500 bln over a decade from the fees in the legislation, which is modelled on the Superfund Program that forced companies to pay to clean up sites contaminated by toxic pollution. (Politico)
Put up your Dukes – Duke Energy now has 10 GW of renewable energy in its portfolio and is on track to reach 16 MW of renewable energy by 2025, the US utility said Thursday in its second quarter earnings report. Duke is pushing ahead with plans to renew the licenses of its six nuclear plants in North and South Carolina, Lynn Good, Duke Energy’s chair, president and CEO, told stock analysts on an earnings call. Good also noted she is also closely watching the progress of HB-951 in North Carolina, which she said the company supports. HB-951 would prevent North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper’s adminsitration from participating in the RGGI cap-and-trade market, with a state commission having recently approved a petition to commence a rulemaking on a power sector carbon market regulation. (Utility Dive)
Raising the ‘char – Offset standard developer and manager Verra on Friday announced it will introduce its proposed Methodology for Biochar Utilisation in Soil and Non-Soil Applications during an Aug. 10 webinar at 10am Eastern time (1400 GMT). The VCS methodology, which will be published for public consultation shortly afterward, provides a framework for quantifying emission reductions and removals from: improved waste handling practices that result in the production of biochar from feedstock biomass, the use of biochar in soils, and certain non-soil material applications such as cement or asphalt. Verra worked with tech companies and offset project financiers and developers FORLIANCE, South Pole, and BiocharWorks to develop this methodology.
SCIENCE & TECH
AMOC amok – Climate change has “almost complete[ly]” destabilised the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC), a critical aquatic “conveyor belt” that plays a major role in global temperature and weather systems, a new analysis published Thursday in Nature Climate Change reveals. Increasing ocean temperatures and, especially, the influx of freshwater from melting ice sheets and glaciers is slowing the AMOC, which includes the Gulf Stream. If circulation shuts off, North America and Europe could be plunged into extreme cold, US East Coast sea levels could rise, and seasonal monsoons critical to much of the world’s water supply could be disrupted. The AMOC has stopped circulating before – at the end of the last ice age, setting off a Northern Hemisphere cold spell that transformed ecosystems and threw human societies into upheaval for 1,000 years. (Climate Nexus)
Flight fuss – Alok Sharma, the UK government minister responsible for November’s COP26 UN climate summit in Glasgow, has been criticised after flying to 30 countries in the past seven months including India, Brazil, Indonesia, Qatar, Jamaica, and Kenya. Most of his journeys were during the winter and spring months when international travel from Britain was largely banned, but Sharma was exempt from COVID restrictions. His resulting high carbon footprint was branded the “height of hypocrisy” by The Mail, while Green party lawmaker Jenny Jones told The Guardian that the travel was “excessive”. A UK government spokesperson said “helping the world tackle the climate emergency is an international priority for the government. Virtual meetings play a large part, however face to face meetings are key to success in the climate negotiations.” (Guardian)
Bonus summer edition… More like Exxon No-bil – ExxonMobil was suspended from the Climate Leadership Council, a Republican-founded research and advocacy group that unites conservation groups and some of the world’s biggest oil drillers and has long advocated for a carbon tax and dividend programme. The move comes just weeks after an Exxon lobbyist was secretly recorded by Greenpeace saying some of the company’s key climate commitments were disingenuous, including that it viewed a carbon price as a mere public relations move “After careful consideration, we have decided to suspend ExxonMobil’s membership in both the Council and Americans for Carbon Dividends, our advocacy arm,” Chief Executive Officer Greg Bertelsen said in a statement on Friday. In addition to Exxon, founding CLC members include BP, the World Wildlife Foundation, ConocoPhillips, and Conservation International. (Bloomberg, Politico)
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