CP Daily: Friday April 15, 2016

Published 21:41 on April 15, 2016  /  Last updated at 21:41 on April 15, 2016  /  Newsletter  /  No Comments

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

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Key takeaways as Alberta outlines details of carbon tax

As it announced the 2016 budget on Thursday, Alberta’s NDP government outlined the details of its new province-wide carbon tax, which includes levies on transport fuels and natural gas that will accompany consumer rebates and a cut in the small business tax rate.

World Bank CO2 price support group holds inaugural meeting, appoints first chairs

A World Bank-led initiative to provide support for governments and companies that want to put a price on carbon this week held its inaugural meeting and named its first co-chairs.

Panama NDC outlines REDD hub, mulls carbon market

Panama has submitted its UN climate pledge, making it one of the last nations to hand in their contributions to the Paris Agreement and coming a week before world leaders reconvene to sign the global pact.

EU Market: Late sell-off clips weekly gains to 1.1% following 10-week high

European carbon declined on Friday, selling off in the final few minutes on speculative profit-taking to post a weekly gain of 1.1% after hitting a 10-week high of €5.67 on Tuesday.

EU emissions registry access restored after outage

Access to the EU’s emissions registry was restored around 1100 GMT on Friday after the online trading hub was hit by technical problems that for a few hours prevented account holders from logging in or transferring carbon units.

Japan cuts carbon emissions for the first time since Fukushima

Japan cut its greenhouse gas output by 3.1% in fiscal year 2014, the Ministry of Environment announced Friday, the first time the nation has recorded a drop in emissions since the 2011 Fukushima disaster forced a shut-down of most of its nuclear power industry.

New Zealand appoints new climate change ambassador

New Zealand on Friday appointed a new ambassador for climate change to lead its delegation at UNFCCC negotiations.

CN Markets: Pilot market data for week ending Apr. 15, 2016

Closing prices, ranges and volumes for China’s regional pilot carbon markets this week.

Voluntary market data from EEM for Apr. 15, 2016

A table of Verified Emission Reduction (VER) prices and offered volumes, provided by European Environmental Markets (EEM) and based on voluntary market data from Carbon Trade Exchange (CTX).

BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD

Dirty money – Today, the US Republican Attorneys General hoping to block the EPA’s Clean Power Plan issued their response to the broad coalition of health organisations and businesses who filed amicus briefs in support of the measure.  Activist group Americans United for Change notes that those GOP AGs have collectively taken over $2.4 million in donations from the fossil fuel energy sector over the last two election cycles.

Planes & boats – The European Parliament today called on EU governments to align the 2030 EU climate target with the Paris Agreement and introduce EU measures to cut emissions from aviation and shipping, according to green group T&E. In a letter sent to Europe’s ministers of transport and environment, the heads of seven political groups of the Parliament’s environment committee also demanded greater climate ambition at both ICAO and IMO, the UN bodies charged with regulating emissions from aircraft and ships respectively, and at EU level.  The environment heads of all the main political groups in the Parliament wrote: “There is no reasonable excuse to continue exempting aviation and shipping from the international and EU climate policies.”

Steag-out – German energy company Steag is considering shutting down several of its eight German hard coal power plants, Handelsblatt reported.  Facing competition from renewable power suppliers, Steag’s domestic revenues from electricity production and trade decreased last year due to falling wholesale power prices.  And following write-downs and layoffs in 2015, Steag is facing more headaches in the near future. (H/T Clean Energy Wire)

Swiss cutsSwitzerland emitted 48.7 million tonnes of CO2e in 2014, a reduction of 3.9 million from 2013 and 5 million below 1990, according to final figures.  The government attributed the cuts to an unseasonably warm winter and improved vehicle CO2 efficiency.

And finally… The gloves are off – Climate change made its biggest foray yet in the US presidential debates, with Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders locking horns last night in Brooklyn.  Sanders accused Clinton of fostering fracking in other countries, while Clinton explained that “for economic and strategic reasons it was American policy to try to help countries get out from under the constant use of coal, building coal plants all the time … So we did say natural gas is a bridge. We want to cross that bridge as quickly as possible … in order to deal with climate change.”  Sanders also attacked what he sees as “incrementalism” in dealing with climate change, giving little credibility to the 195-nation Paris Agreement.  “Of course the agreement is a step forward, but you know agreements and I know agreements, there’s a lot of paper there,” he said, with Clinton countering that the pact “gives you the framework to actually take the action.”  Politco sums up the debate nicely here.

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