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The Beijing municipal government on Tuesday announced that the city’s emissions trading scheme will continue after the June 30 compliance deadline, adding that it would propose to the central government a conversion mechanism that can allow unused allowances from China’s seven pilot schemes to be used in the national ETS.
European carbon prices rose on Tuesday afternoon after hitting a fresh 20-month low as crude oil climbed back above $30/barrel, pulling the rest of the energy complex higher.
EU lawmakers must both spell out how Europe’s carbon market can be the bloc’s driving policy for GHG cuts amid a raft of competing instruments, and include a mid-term review clause to fit in with global goals under the Paris Agreement, business association IETA said Tuesday.
The UK government is working very closely with China to ensure the EU and Chinese emissions trading schemes can link up “a few years after 2020”, David King, the UK’s special representative on climate change, told BusinessGreen.
California regulators will trial lighter-touch auditing methods for rice farming offset projects in a move that could eventually make it easier for such initiatives to earn carbon credits.
Bite-sized updates from around the world
US Supreme Court delivers climate win with electricity ruling – The top court ruled this week that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has the authority to adopt a demand response program, delivering a big win for the Obama administration and environmental groups. The program requires utilities to compensate consumers who voluntarily lower their electricity use during high demand hours, such as in the evening or on very hot days. This particularly encourages big power users like factories to reduce power use to save money. Demand response both benefits consumers and reduces overall energy use, lowering nationwide emissions. (H/T Climate Nexus) Read Bloomberg’s editorial on this ruling: A Supreme Court victory for climate and free markets
US could cut power emissions 78% by 2030 using existing technology, says study – The US could construct a nationwide energy infrastructure that cuts CO2 emissions by up to 80%, finds a new study in Nature Climate Change. This could be achieved without increasing the cost of electricity, thus providing an economic incentive to tackle the problem of climate change. (Carbon Brief)
Mass v Rate – Mass-based compliance with the Clean Power Plan would cost around 70% less than the rate-based method by 2030, according to modelling by grid managers Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO). It found that the price disparity between rate-based compliance, which limits CO2 per megawatt-hour, and mass-based compliance, which caps CO2 by the annual ton, increases over time due to the latter’s increased flexibility under emissions trading. “By 2030, production-based compliance costs are expected to reach about $17 billion under a rate-based plan, while mass-based compliance is estimated at about $5 billion,” RTO Insider reported.
The Canadian government plans to require a separate climate test for proposed pipelines and a planned LNG export terminal, which are now under regulatory review, to determine their impact on the country’s GHG emissions, a move that could impose new delays on billion-dollar projects. (Globe and Mail)
France on Monday pledged to spend €300 million over the next five years to help develop global solar energy. President Francois Hollande made the pledge as the inaugurated the interim secretariat of the International Solar Alliance with Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India. Modi announced the new alliance at COP-21 in Paris, and the secretariat will be based in Gurgaon, India. Hollande said the challenge is to drum up a trillion dollars worth of investments in worldwide solar. (The Hindu)
Massachusetts has become the 10th US state to sign up to the ‘Under 2 MOU’, a network of national and subnational governments pledging to cut GHG emissions 80-95% below 1990 emissions by 2050, or lower per capita emissions to 2 tonnes of CO2e. Colombia’s Guainia and Guaviare as well as the region of Lower Austria have also now joined the group. Read the press release here.
And finally… a correction. Last week we incorrectly reported that the EU Parliament’s industry committee (ITRE) was seeking exclusive competence over the ETS’ proposed Innovation Fund. An EU Parliamentary source has since confirmed that it is the Modernisation Fund that ITRE has in its cross-hairs. As we reported, the issue is due to be addressed by EU political party leaders on Thursday.
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