CP Daily: Thursday April 7, 2016

Published 17:12 on April 7, 2016  /  Last updated at 17:15 on April 7, 2016  / Ben Garside /  Newsletters

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

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BRIEFING: The challenges of linking Asia-Pacific carbon markets

Asia-Pacific nations are building carbon markets at an unprecedented pace, but their vastly different circumstances could mean they risk hampering future efforts to link the schemes.

Coal prices may fall further this year, but to recover before 2020 -IHS

Global coal prices may have further to fall amid a massively oversupplied Chinese market, but they risk spiking towards 2020 as fresh demand from Asian nations will struggle to be met, consultants IHS said on Thursday.

CO2 emissions from Australia’s electricity sector up 5.5% since carbon tax repeal

CO2 emissions from electricity generation in Australia have gone up 5.5% since the government repealed the country’s carbon price in July 2014, as cheap coal has taken an increasingly large share in the energy mix, analysts said Thursday.

EU Market: EUAs fade after hitting six-week high

EU carbon prices hit their highest level for six weeks early on Thursday but slipped throughout the session amid a lower energy complex.

COMMENT: Beware the ‘bid plateau’ at ERF III – The risk of bidding the average price

RepuTex’s Hugh Grossman and Bret Harper look at bidding strategies for Australia’s third Emission Reduction Fund (ERF) auction, which takes place on Apr. 27-28.

Bite-sized updates from around the world

**Summer school for emissions trade – Multilateral body International Carbon Action Partnership (ICAP) has opened for applications for its 2016 ICAP Summer School on Emissions Trading, taking place in Brussels from July 4-15 . The course will focus on key issues faced in the design and implementation of ETS, taking into account the specific needs and interests of developing countries. The application deadline in Apr. 20. More details here**

#BASICPOWER – The BASIC countries (Brazil, South Africa, India, and China) will sign the Paris Agreement on Apr. 22 in New York, Indian Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar tweeted on Thursday, following a BASIC ministerial meeting on climate change held in New Delhi on Apr. 6-7.

Getting down to brass tacks on methane – At a meeting in Ottawa today, US EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy and Canadian Environment and Climate Change Minister, Catherine McKenna, will plan how to enact the methane cuts that President Obama and Prime Minister Trudeau agreed to last month. The two countries have committed to reducing methane emissions from the oil and gas sector by 45% below 2012 levels by the year 2025 and McCarthy and McKenna will be looking for ways to strip out emissions along the full oil and gas production and supply chain – from mining sites to pipelines. The meeting comes two days after the EPA said tackling methane emissions is one of its top priorities for 2016. (H/T Climate Nexus)

“Nein” to a national CO2 price floor – Germany is against the idea of a national price floor for EU carbon allowances, according to a response from the federal government to a question asked by the Green Party in the Bundestag. In light of low prices in the EU ETS, the Green Party asked about whether additional national measures were being considered to support European policies, for example something similar to the UK’s carbon floor price. The German government rejected such a measure, but said “discussions and proposals on a European level in relation to this are being followed and examined,” likely referring to France’s price corridor proposal.  Read the federal government’s Mar. 21 reply (in German) here.  (H/T Clean Energy Wire)

Big oil’s obstructive lobbying – Oil and gas majors including Exxon and Shell, along with three industry associations, spent a combined $114 million last year to manipulate lawmakers and public discourse on climate change, according to data compiled by London-based NGO Influence Map.

Big oil’s “duplicitous game” – “Fossil fuel interests have played a rather duplicitous game of simultaneous nominal public support for, and quieter private opposition to, the Paris COP-21 accords. Essentially, they said that they supported the accord, while acting to undermine it.” That’s according to Timmons Roberts and Robert Brulle of the Brown University Climate and Development Lab, who outline three theories on the silence of the fossil fuel industry at the Paris climate summit. (Thomson Reuters Foundation)

EU tries again on VAT fraud – The European Commission presented an Action Plan, its latest effort to harmonise VAT across EU member states. It aims to kickstart fresh talks with lawmakers to find ways to clamp down on fraud that is costing treasuries an estimated €50 billion a year, including the carousel fraud that has involved cross-border trade in carbon allowances.

Royal reversal – French environment minister and COP-21 president Segolene Royal says she will support an application from the country’s climate change ambassador Laurence Tubiana to become the next UN climate chief, Climate Home reported, days after the potential candidate found her bid quashed.  Royal was widely believed to be behind France’s apparent move to block Tubiana’s pitch for the Bonn-based post, but now claims this was simply a mistake.

New Brunswick climate committee – The Canadian province’s government is forming a committee to look at the steps it can take to fight climate change at home, CTV reports. “We want to have members of the legislative assembly representative, to have an open discussion about climate,” said the province’s environment minister Brian Kenny.  New Brunswick’s premier Brian Gallant is reportedly considering introducing a revenue-neutral carbon tax.

And finally… Venezuelan long weekends! President Nicolas Maduro has designated every Friday in April and May as non-working holidays in the South American country in order to save electricity, as a prolonged drought blamed on El Nino pushes water levels to a critical threshold at hydro plants. (Bloomberg)

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