CP Daily: Wednesday March 22, 2023

Published 02:30 on March 23, 2023  /  Last updated at 02:30 on March 23, 2023  / Carbon Pulse /  Newsletters

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

**Carbon Forward Asia is coming – May 2-3, Singapore**

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EU makes plans to force companies to say more about their carbon credit use

EU proposals to tackle greenwashing launched on Wednesday would force companies active in the bloc to disclose where they acquire their carbon credits and whether the units are backed by recognised methodologies, seeking to open up the little-regulated voluntary carbon market (VCM).


Voluntary carbon market commands united offence in face of recent criticism -experts

One of the biggest challenges facing the voluntary carbon market (VCM) is presenting a united front in the face of criticism, speakers at the North American Carbon World said Wednesday, noting this should include backing a learning-by-doing model that emphasises progress and impact.

Cookstove hot air concerns shared by rating agency, although proponents hit back

Almost all sampled cookstove projects have been given low scores by a carbon credit rating agency, echoing an academic report that claimed rife over-crediting even as proponents said the work mischaracterised current practices and downplayed other benefits.

Global energy firm seals deal for 11.5 mln cookstove carbon credits using new MRV tech

A French-headquartered global energy firm has penned a long-term deal to buy up to 11.5 million carbon credits sourced from projects in Cambodia and Bangladesh, which the parties in the deal said was the first major sale of offsets using the Gold Standard’s digital verification methodology.

DRC province signs jurisdictional REDD+ deal for peatland carbon sequestration

A province holding three-quarters of the peatland in the Democratic Republic of the Congo has signed a jurisdictional nested REDD+ agreement with a Singapore-headquartered project developer.

CIX to launch nature-based standardised contract in Q2

Climate Impact X (CIX) is set to launch its nature-based standardised contract on its upcoming spot trading platform, addressing market concerns over project delivery risk, market-representative pricing, and fragmented liquidity in the voluntary carbon market (VCM), it announced on Thursday.

StoneX teams up with ACX to create digital carbon marketplace in the US

Nasdaq-listed financial services firm StoneX Group has signed an agreement with AirCarbon Exchange (ACX) to create a digital carbon marketplace in the US as part of the StoneX platform, the two companies said on Wednesday.

Global tech giants look to bolster carbon removal market

Global tech giants are continuing to support the nascent voluntary carbon removals market, with Microsoft and Google on Wednesday both announcing investment and initiatives.


Washington needs “flexibility to acquiesce” to California in carbon market linkage pursuit

Washington state should have the ability to alter its WCI-modelled cap-and-trade programme and more closely align with California as the jurisdictions pursue linkage, though it is difficult to say whether full fungibility between the two carbon markets as currently structured could take place, a conference heard Wednesday.

RGGI states to look into zeroing out allowance caps by 2040

The 11 RGGI member states will look into ratcheting down yearly allowance caps to zero by 2040 as one possible scenario in the power sector carbon market’s third programme review, according to a document posted Wednesday.

Low initial demand to register federal Canadian offset projects due to overlapping protocol

The Canadian federal offset system has only received one project application since its publication in June because its first protocol is already covered by the provinces, according to the government agency tasked with running the programme.

California YoY compliance offset issuance falls nearly 60% through Q1

California offset issuance over a two-week period dropped by more than 50% week-over-week for the second time in a row, with year-to-date levels cratering compared to the same period in 2022, data from state regulator ARB published Wednesday showed.

UPDATE – Financials opening more short positions in RGGI due to growing allowance bank -analyst

(Updates Tuesday’s story in CPD to provide additional context, detail regarding analyst comments)

Investors have taken up greater short positions in the power sector RGGI carbon market because of its growing allowance bank, an analyst told the North American Carbon World (NACW) conference in Anaheim on Tuesday.


EUA investment case growing stronger as market faces shortfalls, increased demand, fund says

EUA prices are likely to rise in the coming two years as utilities catch up on forward hedging following last year’s energy crisis, magnifying the impact of a supply shortfall as the market begins to anticipate the impact of cuts in free allocation, according to executives at a European investment firm.

Euro Markets: EUAs hold near €90 as March options expire, despite funds slashing net length

European benchmark carbon prices gyrated around the key €90 level for most of Wednesday as traders anticipated the expiry of the March options contract and the fortnightly UKA auction, shrugging off exchange data that showed a sharp reduction in investment funds’ long positioning last week.

EU lawmakers fear greenwashing as a consequence of carbon farming

Members of the European Parliament expressed concerns on Wednesday about the risks of greenwashing linked to carbon farming, during a public hearing with experts.


New Zealand to search for gross emissions reductions potential in new ETS review

The New Zealand government has launched a new review of its emissions trading scheme to figure out if and what changes are needed to encourage business to transition away from fossil fuels and support GHG removals.

Australian philanthropist launches initiative pairing NGOs with business to unlock green investment

An Australian investor and philanthropist has launched an initiative designed to bring businesses and NGOs together to advocate the removal of regulatory and policy barriers that block green investment, as environmental groups are being scrutinised for their ties with big business and politics.

New South Wales’ stringent treasury climate guidelines could be a sign of things to come -analysis

The Australian state of New South Wales has implemented tough new Treasury guidelines that one expert says applies a carbon price through regulation, would make new fossil fuel projects untenable, and could be easily applied to other state and federal jurisdictions.


Global carbon allowance revenues rise 9% to $63 bln record in 2022 -report

A total of more than $63 billion was raised from the sale of carbon allowances across 28 emission trading systems (ETS) in 2022, according to a report published Wednesday, with soaring prices in the EU’s carbon market driving revenues to a new record.


Bank says govt regulations needed to ensure well-functioning voluntary biodiversity credit market

The voluntary market for biodiversity credits is emerging on the back of increased pressure on corporations to report on their impact on nature and set their own targets, but government regulations can help drive demand and ensure a well-functioning market that buyers can trust, according to the Commonwealth Bank.


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North American Carbon World (NACW) 2023 – Mar. 21-23, Anaheim: For 20 years, the NACW conference has been the place for carbon professionals working in North American carbon markets and climate policy to learn, collaborate, and network. Taking place Mar. 21-23 in Anaheim, California, NACW 2023 will dive into new policies and developments that will shape and scale carbon markets and climate solutions with integrity, ambition, and equity. Register now to gain actionable insights for bold climate solutions and participate in premier networking opportunities with an active and engaged audience to strengthen your organization’s strategy for navigating the carbon landscape.

European Climate Summit (ECS 2023) – Mar. 28-30, Lisbon: Registration for the 5th edition of the European Climate Summit organised by IETA and partners is open. The ECS brings together leading private sector experts and policymakers from both the carbon and energy world, to analyse and discuss the current developments and pressing challenges. The summit provides a discussion and networking forum for policymakers, business leaders, and innovators involved in building, scaling, and collaborating on markets for net zero. The event will feature high-level plenaries, cross-cutting deep dives, interactive side events, and quality networking opportunities. Registration here

Carbon Forward Asia – May 2-3, Singapore/Online: Carbon Forward is coming to Asia! Join us in Singapore or watch the conference online, and gain valuable insights into the trends and developments in carbon pricing throughout the Asia Pacific region. We will discuss investment opportunities across compliance and voluntary carbon markets, as well as transport initiatives such as CORSIA and SAF for aviation and shipping sector programmes, the impact of the EU’s carbon border adjustment mechanism (CBAM), CCS crediting, developments under Article 6 of the Paris Agreement, corporate climate goals, and other exciting topics. We are curating a high-level programme for this rapidly-evolving region, with the agenda and speaker line-up to be released soon. Early Bird tickets are now available. Purchase yours now



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


Disaster faster – A surge in climate-driven natural disasters resulted in global economic losses of $275 bln last year, of which $125 bln were covered by insurance, according to the latest annual report by insurance giant Swiss Re. The update confirms that the insured losses from natural catastrophes exceeded the $100 bln mark for the second year in a row, continuing a trend that has seen insured losses from natural disasters over the past three decades increase by an average of a 5-7% a year. (BusinessGreen)

Getting ship shape – Pressure is growing on the international shipping industry to accept a carbon levy on ships that would fund climate action in the developing world, with the World Bank among those pushing for the measure at a crucial international meeting this week, the Guardian has learned. A levy on the GHG emissions produced from shipping would encourage companies to upgrade their fleets, run them more efficiently, and seek cleaner fuels and technologies. Shipping accounts for more than 3% of global carbon emissions, but is regarded as one of the hardest sectors to decarbonise, as ships run on heavy, dirty, high-carbon fuel oil. (The Guardian)


Greve danger – Several French refineries were still blocked from delivering products after two weeks of strikes, disrupting production and power supply, while attempts to requisition workers at a key depot sparked scuffles with police. The industrial action is part of a nationwide movement against pension system changes including an increase to the retirement age in France by two years to 64, which was forced through parliament without a vote. President Emmanuel Macron is looking to push on past the disputes with new reforms in the coming weeks after his government barely survived a no-confidence motion on Monday over the decision to force through the pension bill. French nuclear power generation has also been impacted. (Euractiv)

Trees in trouble – Some 80% of German trees are sick, suffering from crown dieback, according to the government’s annual forest report published on Tuesday. The report also draws attention to severe droughts in the country since 2018. On crown dieback – the dying of branches and branch tips that is seen as a sign of stress, pest, or disease – the study found that the state of German forests did not improve in 2022 compared to the year before. Last year, the forestry ministry presented a €900 mln support programme for climate and biodiversity measures in forestry. However, since the funds are set to be disbursed over multiple years, many have said the package is too small. (EurActiv)


Wind deal – Japan’s top utility JERA has agreed to buy Belgium-based offshore wind energy producer Parkwind for €1.55 bln, as it expands in renewable power to meet decarbonisation goals, according to Reuters. The acquisition will increase the Japanese firm’s renewable energy assets, which also include existing offshore wind investments in Taiwan and the UK, to 2.8 GW from 2.2 GW as of the end of 2022. JERA aims to boost its renewable power assets to 5 GW by Mar. 2026 through new development and acquisitions, said Ken Matsuda, the head of JERA’s overseas offshore wind power business group.

More oil from Russia – Russia is ready to increase oil supplies to China, which has become an increasingly important energy partner since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine triggered wide-ranging Western sanctions, S&P Global reports, citing Russian President Vladimir Putin’s comment after a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Moscow. Chinese importers have been benefitting from discounts on Russian crude – oil deliveries from Russia to China reached a record high of 2.01 mln b/d in February, according to the latest customs data.


Promised probe – Republicans on the House Oversight and Accountability Committee kicked off a long-promised probe Wednesday of the Department of Energy’s huge cash influx from recently enacted climate and energy laws. In a letter to Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm, Committee Chair James Comer (R) and Economic Growth, Energy Policy and Regulatory Affairs Subcommittee Chair Pat Fallon (R) requested documents and communications to ensure proper oversight of billions in new funding. Comer and Fallon specifically referenced a report from the DOE Office of Inspector General released last year, which found that the watchdog does not have enough funding to keep track of the ballooning agency budget stemming from infrastructure and energy legislation championed by the Biden administration. “The OIG wrote you explaining how DOE could not properly oversee appropriated funds and loan authorities under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), and the Chips and Science Act,” the Republicans wrote. (Greenwire)

Made in Canada – As the shift toward clean energy gathers speed, fuelled in part by the US Inflation Reduction Act, Canada is under pressure to accelerate the flow of private investment to fund the country’s energy transition. Research by the Canadian Climate Institute shows that Canada can succeed and remain competitive without trying to match the subsidies and incentives in the Inflation Reduction Act, by using limited public funds to leverage private investment. New analysis suggests adopting a “made-in-Canada” approach: one that ensures Canada can remain competitive through additional policy supports and increased certainty to attract capital investment. Canada’s clean-growth challenges require a strategic and urgent response.


New peatland methodology – A new digital protocol has been launched by Terra Motion and ClimaFi for the measurement and reporting of GHG emissions from peatlands.  The Peatland Protocol itself is a blockchain-based platform for the digital measurement, reporting, and verification (dMRV) of peatland data. The methodology requires readily available satellite radar data to measure the seasonal rise-and-fall, backed up by targeted observations of water table depth and surface conditions. Terra Motion Limited is a spin-off company from the University of Nottingham in the UK, while ClimaFi is a UK start-up.

Carbon capture collaboration – GE Gas Power, part of GE Vernova, and Svante on Wednesday announced a joint agreement to develop and evaluate solid sorbent-based carbon capture technology for natural gas power generation applications. In addition, GE has made an equity investment in Svante as a part of Svante’s $318-mln Series E fundraising round in Dec. 2022. Last year, GE announced that GE Vernova would spin off from GE in 2024 as a business purpose-built to lead the energy transition. This builds on GE’s sustainability commitments and position in the energy industry, where GE technology provides approximately 30% of the world’s electricity. GE is developing and commercialising a number of breakthrough technologies to drive the energy transition including carbon capture through industrial and technology research collaborations, including the agreement with and investment in Svante.


What’s in a month – The growing period of hardwood forests in eastern North America has increased by an average of one month over the past century as temperatures have steadily risen, a new study published in the Science Daily journal on Tuesday has found. “An entire month of growing season extension is huge when we’re talking about a pretty short period of time for those changes to be expressed,” said lead author of the study, Kellen Calinger-Yoak, assistant professor of evolution, ecology, and organismal biology at The Ohio State University. While extended growing likely increases trees’ absorption of CO2 from the atmosphere, the mix of overall warming and extreme temperature fluctuations can stress trees in ways the research could not detect. These findings point to the need for even more species-specific research to improve models designed to predict how forests, and their valuable carbon-absorption service, will respond as the climate continues to change, Calinger-Yoak added.

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