Just over a month until Carbon Forward 2022 – Europe’s leading environmental markets conference. Taking place in London and online from Oct. 12-14, don’t miss the chance to hear about the risks and opportunities presented by the world’s largest carbon markets – compliance and voluntary. Or come network with your industry peers and meet our sponsors and exhibitors.
Early Bird discounted tickets available until Sep. 12. Register Now!
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RGGI compliance-oriented entities scooped up their highest share of RGGI allowances (RGAs) on record at the Q3 auction this week, though this was not enough to continue a 1.5-year streak of record settlement prices, according to results published Friday.
EU ministers task Brussels to propose price-curbing measures, fail to agree on Russian gas price cap
EU energy ministers gathered in Brussels on Friday to hash out a set of emergency measures aimed at taming the effect of soaring energy prices, while making only limited headway on deciding whether to endorse a plan to sell €20 billion worth of MSR-held carbon allowances.
EUAs posted a loss of more than 15% this week, dropping to yet another six-month low on Friday despite some traders covering short positions ahead of the weekend, while energy prices slipped as EU ministers met to discuss emergency interventions to moderate soaring energy costs for consumers.
The New Zealand government has laid out its thinking on the Climate Change Commission’s (CCC) proposed changes to the ETS in a consultation paper, and is seeking market and industry feedback, despite appearing largely accepting of its recommendations.
Weekly trading volume in China’s national emissions market fell below 10,000 units over the past week, the lowest level since July, as market participants see little chance of policy progress in the near future.
Australian resources company South32 has set a new goal to reach net zero Scope 3 GHG emissions by 2050, the company announced Friday in its annual sustainable development report.
Several million forestry carbon credits are primed to enter the market after the UN published the results of a technical evaluation of emissions reductions calculations by two nations, with far greater potential volumes waiting in the wings.
A California-headquartered direct air capture (DAC) systems developer has announced a project partnership with a carbon storage firm that they said will permanently remove 5 Mt of atmospheric CO2 annually by 2030.
Emitters continued to widen their California Carbon Allowance (CCA) net length this week, while financial players slightly decreased their position, according to US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) data published Friday.
A New York livestock project registered under the California offset programme has applied for listing in the state’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) via a biomethane pathway, according to documents posted by regulator ARB on Thursday.
The maritime industry will need additional annual investments of $8-28 billion on ships using clean fuels if it is to reach full decarbonisation by 2050, according to a report from Norway-based classification society DNV released this week.
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Just over a month until Carbon Forward 2022 – Europe’s leading environmental markets conference. Taking place in London and online from Oct. 12-14, don’t miss the chance to hear about the risks and opportunities presented by the world’s largest carbon markets – compliance and voluntary. Or come network with your industry peers and meet our sponsors and exhibitors. Early Bird discounted tickets available until Sep. 12. Register Now!
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Tipping points – Global warming to date has driven the world to the brink of multiple tipping points to self-sustaining planetary heating, according to a review published in the journal Science of more than 200 studies. It shows that five tipping points may already have been passed due to the 1.1C of warming, including the collapse of the Greenland ice sheet, the shutdown of a key current in the north Atlantic, and the abrupt thaw of carbon-rich permafrost. At 1.5C of heating, the minimum rise now expected, four of the five tipping points move from being possible to likely, while an additional five tipping points become possible, the review found. (Guardian)
Charles in charge – Veteran climate advocate Prince Charles has become King Charles III of the UK after Queen Elizabeth II died yesterday. Charles has been outspoken on environmental issues for more than 50 years and, unlike his mother, has lobbied politicians for his favoured environmental policies, Climate Home reports. These have largely focused on nature conservation rather than clean technology or redistribution of resources. While Queen Elizabeth strictly avoided expressing views on political issues, the Guardian revealed in 2015 that Charles had lobbied UK government ministers on a range of issues including environmental concerns. In 2005, he wrote to the then PM Tony Blair about the “enormous problem of climate change”, urging him to promote energy efficiency and adopt a stringent emissions trading system. Around this time, Charles also lobbied for more subsidies for lamb, beef and dairy producers and told Blair there was an “undersupply of beef”. Beef, followed by lamb, is the most carbon-intensive form of protein.
Green steel – Germany steelmaker Thyssenkrupp has approved investments for a €2 bln direct reduction plant to help the group produce low-carbon steel. Production start of the 2.5 mln tonnes a year facility, which would be co-funded with public support payments, is planned for 2026, Thyssenkrupp said.
I, energy – The European Commission has approved under EU state aid rules a €19.8 mln Croatian aid measure in favour of energy storage operator IE-Energy. The measure is aimed at helping IE-Energy to partially finance the procurement and the installation of grid-scale batteries to provide TSOs with balancing services. TSOs use grid-scale batteries to maintain a continuous balance between electricity supply from power stations and demand from consumers, and to store electricity when needed. The aid will take the form of a direct grant and will cover approximately 30% of capital expenditures. The Commission concluded that the aid is necessary and appropriate to address an existing market failure, as there is a lack of incentives to provide balancing services to TSOs through grid-scale energy storage facilities.
Captured onboard – BASF and Samsung will carry out a collaborative feasibility assessment of capturing CO2 onboard maritime vessels using BASF’s OASE blue technology for flue gas applications, according to a BASF press release. Towards this end, both parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding for Onboard Carbon Capture and Storage (OCCS). The scope of the collaboration includes a marinisation study as well as engineering design and construction of the carbon capture unit. The joint effort is in line with the strategy of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to reduce the carbon intensity of international shipping by at least 40% by 2030, the press release stated.
Not good enough – The 2070 net zero goal set by India is not ambitious enough considering the need of the hour, Australian tech billionaire and green entrepreneur Mike Cannon-Brookes said, Economic Times reports. Brookes, the co-founder and co-CEO of Atlassian, a collaboration software company, made this comment at the Australia India Leadership Dialogue, 2022, in New Delhi. The event saw the participation of more than 100 business, academic and government leaders from Australia and India. Cannon-Brookes, however, noted that India is certainly more ambitious now compared to the past. “What we have been seeing in the last 10 years in most of the economies is that the ambition is growing. As technology costs come down, risks come down. This encouragement is a good thing,” he added.
New standards – China is planning to launch a set of management standards for small-scale offset programmes targeting individuals through online platforms, setting benchmarks for regional governments and enterprises to encourage green behaviour, CCTV reports. A few emissions exchanges and universities have been involved in the drafting of the principles, according to the report. The work team, also comprised of experts from tech giants Ant Group and Alibaba, is aiming to publish the standards by the end of this year.
Virg-exit – Virginia’s planned departure from RGGI faced its most recent objection on Thursday when over one third of the state’s General Assembly signed a letter arguing Governor Glenn Youngkin (R) doesn’t have the authority to exit the cap-and-trade bloc. The Democratic assemblymembers and senators say a bill must pass both houses of the state’s legislature in order for Virginia to leave RGGI. A lawsuit to determine if the state’s Attorney General shares Youngkin’s opinion is pending a ruling. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Furey Road – As the Newfoundland and Labrador government pleads with Ottawa to continue exempting home heating fuels from its carbon tax, documents obtained by CBC reveal the Canadian province’s “very limited flexibility” to maintain the exemption with the federal ‘backstop’ CO2 price slated to triple by 2030. In a letter to the federal environment minister, NL Premier Andrew Furey wrote that the province’s plan to meet the post-2022 federal CO2 pricing benchmarks “retains exemptions for furnace oil and other fuels that the federal government agreed to as recently as 2019.” Meghan McCabe, a spokesperson for the Premier’s Office, clarified Friday that the proposal submitted to Ottawa is exactly the same as the 2019 version, which consists of a CO2 levy on fossil fuels and output-based pricing system. In his letter, Furey wrote that if the exemption on heating oil is lifted, residents will pay an extra 17.38 cents per litre of oil starting in April. Furnace oil on the Northeast Avalon currently costs C$1.52 per litre, about 54 per cent more than this time last year.
Timber! – Economic growth and rising demand for forestry products does not always cause more CO2 loss from forests, new research by the University of Maine has found that has developed a first of its kind forest model intercomparison project (ForMIP). “Investments in forest management driven by market signals can lead to faster growing forests that can jointly sequester more carbon and provide ample timber supply,” said Dr Justin Baker of North Carolina State University, a co-author of the study. The research is intended to help policy makers mitigation possibilities that reflect forest sector dynamics through management.
Get out the map – NCX has launched a carbon credits map, showing landowner-generated VERs available for purchase across the US. The map represents thousands of landowners who have offered to defer timber harvest in support of climate action. The firm’s most recent annual landowner payments totalled $2.5 mln, which sequestered over 2 mln tonne-years of carbon across 1.17 mln acres of forest. “Our carbon credits map tells the story of this mission and empowers sustainability leaders to support local landowners with immediate action for climate impact towards their net-zero goals. Users can view enrolled forested acres by state to see supply available in their local areas,” the company said in an online post.
SCIENCE & TECH
Crypto crackdown – The White House tipped its hand about plans to rein in carbon emissions linked to cryptocurrencies, but it’s unclear how much tangible policy will flow from the effort, Axios writes. The White House science office, in a new report, warns energy demand from generating, owning and exchanging digital assets could hinder US climate goals. The range of estimates of global power use for crypto assets exceeds annual demand from many countries, including Australia and Argentina, it finds. It’s in the neighbourhood of 0.4-0.9% of annual global power use, and the US houses roughly a third of global crypto operations that together amount to 0.9-1.7% of the country’s annual demand.
Ban to the bone – The Dutch city of Haarlem is putting a ban on meat advertisements in public spaces, in what is being hailed as a world first, Euronews reports. The ban, which it’s hoped will come into force in 2024, aims to reduce meat consumption and the impacts of the climate crisis. It follows similar prohibitions by other Dutch cities on advertising from fossil fuel and aviation companies. Ziggy Klazes, a councillor from the GroenLinks party which introduced the motion, says the ban is only intended for some types of meat, namely that from industrial farming. Earning money by renting out ad space to industries that have a negative effect on the environment would seem to contradict this goal, she said, adding that the effort is not an attempt to take away people’s right to consume meat. As part of the same motion, Haarlem is also banning ads in public spaces from other polluting industries, including holiday flights and fossil fuel companies. Research has found that food production contributes more than a third of the world’s GHGs, with meat in particular causing about twice the emissions of other types of food and livestock accounting for 14.5% of all man-made GHG output, according to the UN.
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