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EU ministers arrived in Luxembourg on Monday for two-day talks to reach a united position on several Fit for 55 (FF55) climate policy reform proposals, aiming to keep pace with the European Parliament in the two-track legislative process.
The G7 and several invited developing countries agreed to work together to accelerate climate action while ensuring their energy security, according to a statement on Monday, the second day of the three-day leaders’ summit in Germany that has seen several climate-related announcements.
Canada’s environment ministry is to further delay the start of compliance obligations under the Clean Fuel Standard (CFS) to the end of 2023, the Canadian Press reported late on Monday, citing final regulations obtained ahead of their intended publication.
The Australian government is set to announce it will commit funding to five blue carbon projects across the country, as its environment minister told a UN Ocean Conference that the environment “is back front and centre” in Australia.
New Zealand’s coastlines could be home to thriving blue carbon projects, though significant financial and methodological barriers remain alongside the very real risk that projects could be submerged by rising sea levels in the coming decades, a study has found.
Fears of an inflation-induced global recession continued to stalk the voluntary carbon market (VCM) this week, with standardised offset credits falling to extend a recent trend.
Euro Markets: EUAs advance amid continued hedging demand as market awaits Council position on reforms
EUAs consolidated around their recent range in a low-key start to the week early on Monday, as trading continued to be active in longer-dated contracts amid steady forward hedging.
The European Parliament this week approved a raft of measures to reform the EU ETS and advance the European Commission’s monumental Fit for 55 climate policy package. Now that the dust has settled somewhat after hundreds of amendments were adopted by the full legislature, and with the file now set to move to trilogue negotiations between the Parliament, Commission, and EU member states, Carbon Pulse had a dozen analysts weigh in on the main aspects of what was agreed by MEPs.
Job listings this week
- *Sales Manager, Carbon Project Development, Carbon Offset & Green Energy Services, ClimatePartner – Munich
- *Carbon Offset Sourcing Manager, ClimatePartner – Munich
- *Project Manager (2 positions), Xpansiv – New York/London
- *Exchange Sales and Business Line Management (multiple positions/levels), Xpansiv – Houston/London/Singapore/Geneva/New York
- Senior Carbon Specialist, thinkstep-anz – New Zealand/Australia
- Investment Associate, Revalue Nature – London
- Portfolio and Partnerships Senior Consultant, Nature-Based Solutions Business Unit, EcoAct – UK/France
- Portfolio Consultant, Removall – Paris/Remote
- Business Developer, Removall – Paris/Remote
Or click here to see all our listings
Climeworks’ DAC Summit – June 30 in Zurich/online: Carbon removal and Direct Air Capture technologies have been experiencing a watershed moment in recent months. Scientists have deemed them indispensable in the latest IPCC report, governments have stepped up their funding and policy efforts, and investors have committed large amounts to scale up. Where does the industry stand today, and what are its recent most promising developments? What are the requirements and immediate next steps for scaling up at the required speed? And when the industry works together, what could the future look like? The Summit provides a unique opportunity to get answers to these questions from DAC insiders and experts. Register here
Argus Carbon Markets and Regulation Conference – June 30-July 1 in Lisbon, Portugal: The event will deliver critical updates on regulation, the future of the EU ETS, and key developments in the voluntary carbon markets space, amongst other topics that will be tailored for the European and global audience. Featuring panel discussions, fireside chats, presentations, and collaborative problem-solving sessions. Participates will gain knowledge and insight from expert opinions and take advantage of the opportunity to network and discuss with their industry peers in-person for the first time in two years. CP Daily subscribers can get a 15% discount by registering with the code CARBONPULSE15: https://bit.ly/3t4CmH6
Asia Pacific LNG & Gas Summit – July 6-8, Singapore: The Premier Meeting Place for LNG Buyers & Sellers in Asia Pacific. As a Carbon Pulse our reader, you are invited to attend the Asia-Pacific Carbon Markets Session (July 8, 1530-1700 local time) at a special rate of USD 500. Participants will also receive access to the Award Evening (July 7, 1800-2000) and all networking sessions on July 8, as well as the Networking App. You are also welcome to a 15% discount for the entire three-day event. To register, contact Emmanuel Bossman at LNGAsia@dmgevents.com.
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Benchmark-setting – The International Carbon Action Partnership (ICAP), an intergovernmental forum on emissions trading systems, has published a report shedding light on how benchmark-based free allocation is designed across major ETSs and on the implications of benchmark design choices on abatement incentives, drawing on experiences from existing ETSs.
Don’t ask don’t get – UK ministers have admitted they failed to contact utility EDF, the operator of Hinkley Point B nuclear power plant, to explore the possibility of keeping the reactor running amid major fears over the country’s energy security, with the facility now due to shut this August. Up until now, ministers had suggested they had been in touch with the French-owned company. EDF had released a statement saying that while an extension to Hinkley Point was “technically feasible”, it was too late to carry it out. (Independent)
Grid idea – Germany’s federal parliament has passed a first batch of energy legislation, designed to accelerate the expansion of the power grid and protect consumers from rising energy prices when a supplier leaves the market, Clean Energy Wire reports. “For a successful energy transition, it is crucial that the grid expansion can keep pace with the accelerated expansion of renewable energies,” said economy and climate minister Robert Habeck, whose ministry had prepared the bills. The legal changes include: all power grid planning will have to be geared towards a climate neutral grid in 2045; large and small energy storage facilities will be permitted to act on the power market and offer both storage and power input without having to pay taxes and fees twice; energy providers have to notify their customers three months in advance before they stop supplies; the construction of distribution grids and hydrogen pipelines will be labelled as “being in the interest of the public good” – which will make their construction easier. Following the vote in the Bundestag, the bill has to now be passed by the second parliamentary chamber which is set to take place in July.
Claw it back – Groups representing some of Europe’s biggest energy companies have asked the EU to intervene over Spain’s plan to take profits from carbon-free power plants that are deemed to have benefited from a rally linked to fossil fuel, a letter seen by Reuters showed. Spain says older emissions-free plants have received a profits boost from high power prices in the broader market that has been increased because they are exempt from paying for pollution permits needed to burn fossil fuels such as gas and coal. It is working on a law to oblige the companies that operate them to make payments to the state to reflect this.
Cough it up – France will have to spend “at least” €2.3 bln more per year to adapt infrastructures to climate change, a recent report published by the Institute for Climate Economics (I4CE), a Paris-based think tank, reads. In its report, the think-tank set up in 2015 by the French National Promotional Bank Caisse des Depots and the French Development Agency states that at least this amount must be added to the yearly state budget from next year, which will be voted on in September. Its report also presented 18 measures to quickly put in place to face the negative impacts of climate change on infrastructures. “The calculations are […] difficult”, admits the I4CE. In May 2019, French senators bemoaned that “no actor is currently able to present a global vision of the financing of adaptation policies” to mitigate climate change. (Euractiv)
Flight to quality– Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport will cut its annual number of flights from 2024, a reduction of 12% from the peak in 2019, Climate Home reports. Europe’s third-busiest airport will set a limit of 440,000 flights a year, a cut of 12% from the 2019 figure, as part of an effort to “restore the balance between a well-operating international airport, the business climate, and the interests of a better and healthier living environment”, Netherlands’ transport minister Mark Harbers said. The country has already reduced its national sped limit to 100 kph (62 mph) in order to lower nitrogen emissions.
Partnering the Global South on climate – A G7 climate-partnership opens possibilities for enhanced North-South collaboration, an opinion piece in Economic Times writes. With the world on edge on climate, credible commitments are needed to achieve goals and avoid new North-South misunderstandings. Because much of the world’s savings and financial capital markets are still in the global North, and much of the financing gaps to meet climate goals are in the global South, which faces many other development development urgencies, it makes sense for G7 to work in close cooperation with key partners — to accelerate global climate policy actions. Read Carbon Pulse’s analysis on the IEA’s recent energy investment outlook, a report which highlighted the disparity in clean energy investment between high income and developing economies.
Bilateral blue carbon – The Indonesian Coordinating Ministry for Maritime Affairs and Investment and the South Korean Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries held a hybrid seminar to explore cooperation on tapping the blue carbon potential of the two countries, Antara News reports. The Korea-Indonesia Blue Carbon Expert Seminar was held as a form of commitment between the two countries on developing the blue carbon international cooperation activity, which was agreed upon during a bilateral meeting between the two ministries on October.
Marvellous methanation – Tokyo Gas, Japan’s top city gas supplier, said it has begun a pilot programme of methanation, a technology to help decarbonise city gas, and plans to use green hydrogen sourced from renewable energy for the trial by next March, Reuters reports. Methanation converts hydrogen and CO2 into synthetic methane, an alternative for the main component in natural gas. It is considered a way of using CO2 as a raw material that could help the company achieve carbon neutrality in 2050.
Sequestered in Alberta – Canadian utility Capital Power is advancing its Genesee gas-fired CCS project to the front-end engineering and design (FEED) study phase. It is partnering with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Black & Veach, and Kiewit on the project in Alberta. Capital Power says it hopes to eventually capture up to 95% of all CO2 emitted at the site, with the project anticipated to start capturing carbon as early as 2027. The company is expected to make a final investment decision by mid-2023. Major Canadian oil execs made headlines this year when they requested governments cover at least 75% of the cost of CCS units.
SCIENCE & TECH
DAC stack – Electricity sector decarbonisation and direct air capture technology improvements are both indispensable to avoid environmental problem-shifting, according to a study in the journal Nature Communications. The authors perform a prospective life-cycle assessment for direct air carbon capture and storage under a range of climate change mitigation scenarios, consistent with the Paris targets. Decarbonising the electricity sector improves the sequestration efficiency, but also increases the terrestrial ecotoxicity and metal depletion levels per tonne of CO2 sequestered via direct air capture, it found. The study adds that while DAC aids the achievement of long-term climate targets, its deployment should not suggest a relaxation of sectoral decarbonisation targets.
Unreliable under the sea – The oceans are one of our planet’s most important carbon sinks, with currently around 39 trillion tonnes of CO2 locked away – that’s around 50 times more than what’s circulating in the atmosphere right now. However, we can’t rely on this carbon capture and storage to solve our climate crisis problem, because we’re producing too much excess CO2 too quickly. What’s more, a new study suggests that the deep ocean isn’t able to hold anywhere near as much carbon as previously thought. Scientists looked at the cycle of carbon as it’s sucked up by microscopic plants living near the surface of the water that then drift down to the seabed. Based on new particle tracking models, it turns out that this process is ‘leakier’ and retains less carbon long-term than earlier estimates. (Science Alert)
Killing Zoe – The southern Spanish city of Seville is to become the first in the world to name and classify heatwaves in a year-long pilot project aiming to better shield residents as periods of excessively hot weather become more frequent. It will classify heatwaves into three categories, each tied to specific measures such as the opening of municipal swimming pools or sending health workers to check on elderly or other at-risk individuals. Heatwaves that reach category 3 will be named in descending order of the Spanish alphabet. The first five names have already been chosen: Zoe, Yago, Xenia, Wenceslao, Vega. (The Guardian)
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