CP Daily: Thursday April 21, 2022

Published 03:00 on April 22, 2022  /  Last updated at 03:00 on April 22, 2022  /  Newsletter  /  No Comments

A daily summary of our news plus bite-sized updates from around the world.

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TOP STORY

UK’s carbon market emissions rise 4% in 2021

Carbon market-covered emissions in the UK rose by around 4% in 2021, the scheme’s inaugural year, according to figures released by the government in a surprise late night announcement.

VOLUNTARY

Gulf-based carbon standard’s offset listing on CBL not linked to GEO inclusion

Any listing of GCC-certified renewables offsets on Xpansiv’s CBL carbon trade platform won’t automatically mean the units are delivered into CBL’s standardised GEO contract, the exchange confirmed on Thursday.

Canada-based VER investor announces oversubscribed fundraising

A Canadian alternative ESG investor raised almost twice its targeted amount in financing, it said on Thursday, with the C$28 million ($22.3 mln) sum set to be used to advance the firm’s backing of voluntary emissions reduction (VER) projects.

Google scales up VCM interest with soil carbon venture

US internet major Google is scaling up its interest in the voluntary carbon market, announcing on Thursday an Indian soil carbon initiative while donating to a cross-stakeholder initiative to standardise credits.

Temperate forest edges store more carbon than previously thought -studies

Trees and soils on the edge of temperate forests store more carbon than interior areas, according to US studies that potentially represent good news for climate action but may complicate carbon crediting initiatives.

Global management consultancy commits to net negative emissions, sources removal credits from 7 projects

A large global management consulting firm has pledged to achieve net negative carbon status during this and future years.

ASIA PACIFIC

Japan prepares JCM reform to boost private sector involvement

Japan will consider steps to reform its Joint Crediting Mechanism (JCM) to increase the involvement of private companies in a bid to ensure it reaches the target of generating 100 million offsets from the scheme by 2030, the government said Thursday.

Australian agtech firm closes A$8.5-mln IPO, eyes major carbon prize

An Australian agtech firm that closed a A$8.5-mln ($6.3 mln) IPO to list on the ASX on Thursday hopes its proprietary plant nutrition technology can help generate millions of carbon credits.

AMERICAS

California legislator says action necessary soon to address carbon market oversupply

California should tackle its more than 300-mln cap-and-trade allowance glut “sooner rather than later”, while the state could fairly quickly implement certain watchdog recommendations to help rein in this oversupply, a legislative committee heard Thursday.

NA Markets: RGGI allowances set sights on all-time highs, CCAs dip amid Scoping Plan pessimism

RGGI Allowances (RGAs) came within striking distance of record high settlements this week as traders pointed to escalating power prices and continued compliance demand, while California Carbon Allowance (CCA) values ticked down as state regulator ARB proposed holding the course on the state’s CO2 neutrality target.

EMEA

Euro Markets: EUAs trim midweek gains despite bullish technicals as energy markets advance

EUAs gave up some of the previous session’s 9.5% jump on Thursday, even as traders absorbed a technically bullish picture and energy markets were firmer.

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CONFERENCES

City Week 2022: Resetting Priorities for a Better Future – Apr. 25-27 at London Guildhall: Now in its 12th year, City Week is the premier gathering of the international financial services community. Organised in partnership with the UK Government and leading City institutions, City Week brings together industry leaders and policy makers from around the globe to consider the future of global financial markets. Each day will address a specific theme, with Day 1 focussing on “Meeting the climate change challenge – the role of financial services in achieving net zero”. www.cityweekuk.com

Reuters Events: Global Energy Transition 2022 – June 14-15 in New York City: The conference unites CEOs and changemakers from the energy, industrial, and government ecosystems to shed light on the defining issue of our time, and help companies meet a uniquely difficult challenge. Over two days and five critical themes, we will define the future of energy, inspire a decade of action, and prepare the sector for challenges still to come, with diverse voices from around the world bringing passion and expertise to deliver a new path forward. Find out more by visiting the website today: https://bit.ly/35H7cgb

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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD

Carbon Pulse has teamed up with CME Group to provide its clients with regular updates on the global carbon markets. Check out these briefs for the latest insights on pressing trends and events impacting markets, published every other week. Registration required

INTERNATIONAL

6.7% of the way there – During the 2022 annual meeting of the Boao Forum for Asia, Li Bo – Vice President of the International Monetary Fund – pointed out that in order to keep the world on track to achieving its climate ambitions, by 2030 the global average carbon price needs to reach US$75 per tonne, compared to the current average of $5. “In order to achieve the goal of controlling the temperature rise by 1.5-2.0 degrees Celsius by the middle of this century, a 25-50% carbon reduction task needs to be achieved by 2030, otherwise the global temperature rise will accelerate and we will face a more difficult time in the next 10 years,” Li Bo said, according to Breaking Latest News.

Sea-level playing field – Global shipowning body BIMCO has come out with an updated GHG position statement, amid much jostling for who should pay for shipping’s decarbonisation. Unsurprisingly the organisation has said that charterers should pay for carbon pricing while warning that excessive retroactive measures could have negative unintended consequences. BIMCO said it believes that the commercial party responsible for setting the speed and route of a ship should also provide for emissions allowances or credits under a market-based measure (MBM) and called for new commercial solutions and shared responsibilities between charterers and shipowners to move shipping’s green transition ahead. (Splash)

Crypto counting – Carbon project developer and consultancy South Pole has released the Crypto Climate Impact Accounting Framework, billed as the first coordinated measurement guidance to account for GHG emissions in the cryptocurrency industry and to align with global net zero 2050 goals. The tool aims to boost understanding on how to measure the footprint of crypto as well as to determine where responsibility lies in accounting for the growing financial sector. The framework was developed in partnership with the Crypto Carbon Ratings Institute (CCRI) and payments firm PayPal.

EMEA

Efforts on effort sharing – EU nations are edging towards a deal on how to share the burden of cutting GHG emissions from non-ETS sectors, with states poised to accept national targets proposed by Brussels under a proposed tightening of the bloc’s Effort Sharing Directive, Reuters reported, citing three anonymous diplomats and a draft document drawn up by the French EU presidency. France has suggested keeping the proposed targets adding up to a 40% cut under 2005 levels by 2030 but tweaks the baseline for calculating them. One diplomat said a sticking point is whether the gap between rich and poor states’ targets will narrow over time. The member states must still agree on the measure with the European Parliament. Read Carbon Pulse’s analysis on how the proposed steeper non-ETS targets are expected to make cross-border transfers an increasingly attractive option for high-income nations.

Efficiency gains – Energy saving actions by EU citizens could save enough oil to fill 120 super tankers and enough natural gas to heat 20 million homes, the IEA and the European Commission said in a joint report designed to help Ukraine by cutting Europe’s reliance on Russian fuel and also to reduce GHG emissions. By following all recommendations in the plan, the typical EU household could save, on average, close to €500 a year. The actions in the plan draw on the IEA’s earlier 10-Point Plan to Reduce EU Reliance on Russian Natural Gas and 10-Point Plan to Cut Oil Use.

Omania – Germany technical services company TUV Rheinland has issued the first ever green hydrogen and green ammonia certificate to the planned Greenfield Project in Oman. The first phase of that development — with 300 MW of electrolysers powered by 500 MW of solar — was announced in March by its joint developers, Norwegian renewables firm Scatec and Indian sustainable energy company ACME Group. The facility will produce 1.2 mln tonnes of green ammonia per year by combining green hydrogen with nitrogen from the air upon completion of the first phase, and can potentially be further expanded in the future. (Recharge News)

Building cash run – The German government’s €1 bln subsidy programme for new energy-efficient buildings was depleted just hours after its Apr. 20 start, according to the economy and climate ministry. The government had expected funds to be exhausted quickly and lined up a new programme with stricter funding rules to take effect in that case. Accordingly, state-owned development bank KfW launched the so-called ‘stage 2’ of the programme through to year-end to be replaced by a final step in the new year that focuses more deeply on life cycle emissions. (Clean Energy Wire)

AMERICAS

All that beef – The emissions of Brazil’s JBS, the world’s largest meatpacking company, soared more than 50% in the past five years, according to research by several environmental groups that lays bare the challenge of reducing GHG emissions in the global food industry. The study suggested that the Sao company’s full-scope emissions amounted to 421.6 mln tCO2e in 2021, a larger footprint than all of Italy. JBS — which has pledged to reduce emissions to net zero by 2040 — denied the accuracy of the numbers but did not provide its own official numbers for last year. (FT)

A sure thing – The US’ biggest oil industry trade group has drafted a proposal urging Congress to adopt a carbon tax, which would put a surcharge on gasoline and other fossil fuels. The draft proposal was approved by the American Petroleum Institute’s climate committee last month, according to a document reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. The measure must still be approved by the group’s executive committee. The fossil fuel lobby’s proposal comes despite the fact that carbon taxes stand virtually no chance of passing through Congress, with coal brokerage-profiting Senator Joe Manchin (D) having repeatedly blocked his own party’s attempts to pass any sort of climate legislation over the past year in the evenly-split upper chamber.

Turbine take – The US EPA on Thursday issued for public input a draft technical white paper on control techniques and measures that could reduce GHG emissions from new stationary combustion turbines. The white paper does not set policy or standards or establish any binding requirements under any particular regulatory programme. However, EPA anticipated the public dialogue on the draft will help inform consideration of a Clean Air Act section 111 standard for new natural gas electric utility generating units.

Solar start – The US Bureau of Land Management (BLM) plans to green-light construction of 39 utility-scale solar projects totalling more than 29 GW of plant capacity on federal lands in six western states through Q3 2025, the agency has informed Congress. The Department of Interior (DoI), which oversees BLM, this week announced a series of steps designed to streamline infrastructure permitting coordination and facilitate environmental reviews to “responsibly support” development of a minimum 25GW of new geothermal, solar, and wind capacity on federal lands between fiscal years 2021 and 2025. (Recharge)

Transport time – The US Transportation Department said on Thursday it would award $6.4 bln over five years to states to fund projects to reduce GHG emissions. The funding, part of a $1 trillion infrastructure bill approved by Congress in November, will help states fund trail facilities for pedestrians and bicyclists and projects that support the deployment of alternative fuel vehicles. (Reuters)

Marginal call – Oil and gas wells accounting for just 6% of US extraction are the source of nearly half its methane pollution, a study published Tuesday in Nature Communications found. The half a million “marginal wells” extracting less than the equivalent of 15 barrels of oil per day release methane pollution – through intentional venting and leaks and equipment malfunctions – equivalent to the climate impact of 88 coal-fired power plants. The study also found “equipment negligence and disrepair” were common at the well sites, highlighting the opportunity for significant pollution cuts simply by implementing leak monitoring and site inspections. (Climate Nexus)

ASIA PACIFIC

Boom and bust – Australia’s coal export boom will come to an abrupt end because of an “imminent and substantial” drop in purchases by China, and local coal mining communities should brace for the change, The Guardian reports, citing a peer-reviewed paper in the journal Joule. The study forecasts that China’s thermal coal imports will contract at least a quarter from 2019 levels of 210 mln tonnes by 2025, mostly as improved transport links will give local suppliers an edge. If China pursues more ambitious efforts to cut carbon emissions, the decline will be almost twice as fast, with imports sinking to 115 mln tonnes by 2025. Shipments of coking coal used in steelmaking also face a similar downward trajectory. The study used satellite and other data sources to compile a more detailed picture of individual power and steel plant coal demand. It also analysed how new transport links have expanded supplies from inland Chinese provinces and Mongolia to coastal users, supplanting Australian and Indonesian exporters. China actually banned imports of coal and some other commodities from Australia in 2020 as ties between Beijing and Canberra frayed. Regardless, any lowering of global orders from China would dent international prices – hurting Australian exporters – as the nation is by far the world’s biggest consumer of the fuel.

Falling short – India is falling behind on delivering the targets of increasing its non-fossil energy capacity to 175 gigawatts (GW) by 2022 and 500 GW by 2030 as many states, including Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, and Haryana are lagging on this front, Hindustan Times reports. The comments were made during a webinar held by Climate Trends, a Delhi-based climate communications initiative, on how the northern power grid can accelerate the transition and help India meet its 2030 COP26 Glasgow commitments while contributing to limiting global warming to 1.5 C. “We are falling behind on delivering the targets of 175 GW by 2022 and 500 GW by 2030 because while some states are on track others are lagging,” said Aditya Lolla, senior electricity policy analyst for Asia at energy think-tank Ember.

National need – Infrastructure Partnerships Australia (IPA) has used a new report to endorse a new carbon pricing mechanism in Australia. The report, published on Thursday, said there was need for policy leadership in order to decarbonise the country’s infrastructure sector, calling for a national reset following the upcoming federal election. IPA chief Adrian Dwyer said change would come fast if it is guided by a national plan that sets out a clear, actionable, decarbonisation agenda. The report highlighted that a market-based mechanism for pricing carbon “could provide a highly effective and efficient way to drive rapid decarbonisation in Australia.” The report noted that transitioning the nation’s energy system was the first critical step to driving decarbonisation in other areas, noting that the technology to do so already exists – while also emphasising the need for government support. It urged policymakers to avoid the political debate around the cost of transitioning, noting it had led to Australia being considered a climate laggard.

VOLUNTARY

Across the pond – A new survey of ESG decision makers in the US and UK, commissioned by carbon credits ratings provider Sylvera, has found that large US corporations are ahead of large UK corporations when it comes to creating their net zero strategies. Over three quarters (78%) of US ESG decision makers surveyed said their company has a net zero transition strategy already in place, whereas only just over half (55%) of UK ESG decision makers said the same. The survey also discovered that US ESG decision makers are more clued up on voluntary carbon markets, with 50% of those surveyed in the US claiming to have expert level knowledge as opposed to only 26% of those surveyed in the UK. Still, the majority (96%) of US and UK decision makers surveyed said their corporation currently invests in carbon credits.

Automatic offset – Proof-of-stake blockchain protocol Algorand will implement a smart contract that will automate the offsetting of the network’s carbon emissions. In a recent announcement, Algorand revealed that a new smart contract would take a portion of each transaction fee within its blockchain network and automatically process it to purchase verified carbon credits at ClimateTrade, a blockchain-based carbon offset marketplace. According to Algorand Foundation CEO Staci Warden, the move will allow the network to scale while still being carbon negative. (Cointelegraph)

AND FINALLY…

Gaming the planet – The FT has published an online game tasking players to keep global warming to 1.5C by cutting energy-related CO2 emissions to net zero by 2050 by navigating mitigation strategies through the uncertain politics, economics, and climate impacts to enable the planet to remain habitable. The game was based on published scientific research and bespoke IEA modelling.

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