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Washington state’s draft CO2 market plan allows use of RGGI, WCI units but limits trade to operators
Washington’s Department of Ecology on Wednesday released details of the US state’s proposed carbon market, potentially opening the door to the use of allowances and offsets from other North American emissions trading schemes while limiting trade to operators.
Agreement by the European Parliament on a post-2020 EU ETS reform bill risks drifting past an end-2016 provisional schedule as MEPs continue to wrangle for control of the high-profile issue.
EU carbon prices plummeted to a six-month low on Wednesday as mostly speculative selling was met with scarce demand due to unseasonably warm weather and a European holiday, and as wider bearish factors weighed, traders said.
California’s ARB listed over 307,000 early action offsets on Wednesday in what was scheduled to be the state’s final placement ahead of this summer’s deadline for the pre-compliance era units.
Bite-sized updates from around the world
The Paris Agreement may not appear to have strong legal force, but climate activists can use several of its features to support lawsuits against governments to take more ambitious action. This is a threat to constitutional government and representative democracy that countries should consider when deciding on its ratification, writes lawyer Lucas Bergkamp of Hunton & Williams. (Energy Post)
Swedish utility Vattenfall has told several bidders interested in buying its German lignite operations to make binding offers by early March, according to a Handelsblatt report (in German). Unnamed sources familiar with the transaction told the paper Czech utilities EPH and CEZ and German power producer Steag are still in the race. (H/T Clean Energy Wire)
TransCanada is suing the US government over its decision to reject the Keystone XL pipeline – Canadian energy infrastructure firm said it will file a claim under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) seeking $15 billion in damages, while also filing a lawsuit in the US federal court in Houston claiming that the White House overstepped its constitutional powers in rejecting its $8 billion project to transport crude from Alberta’s oil sands and the Bakken formation to Nebraska and then onward to US Gulf coast refiners. (Argus)
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday announced that his upcoming budget proposal will dramatically increase the state’s Environmental Protection Fund to $300 million from $177 million, thanks in part to increased revenues from RGGI auctions. (Times Union)
Zambian REDD+ developer BioCarbon Partners claim they have achieved the world’s first carbon neutral national park from its operations in Lower Zambezi. This involved tourist lodges throughout the park agreeing to offset their 2015 direct emissions with Verified Carbon Units (VCUs) from the project, which was developed with support from US aid. (Press release)
And finally… Vladimir Putin’s global warming fix: carbon nanotubes – Super-strong carbon nanotubes could transform materials like steel and plastics to slash carbon pollution, claims Russia. (Climate Home)
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