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Canada budget proposes carbon contracts for difference, new clean energy tax credits
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s 2023 budget released Tuesday said it will consult on a carbon contracts for difference (CCfD) programme to de-risk private sector investments in GHG mitigation projects, as well as launch new investment tax credits or expand existing ones related to clean energy and carbon capture.
Japan rejigs JCM to boost private-sector interest
Japan has released rules making it possible for private-sector companies to participate in the Joint Crediting Mechanism (JCM) without government assistance, in a bid to attract more involvement from businesses and increase the supply of Article 6-aligned carbon credits.
Indian govt releases draft guidelines for operation of carbon market, seeks stakeholder feedback
India’s power ministry has released a draft set of guidelines for administering the country’s forthcoming Carbon Credit Trading Scheme (CCTS) and has sought comments from stakeholders on its proposal by the middle of April.
J-Credit scheme gets boost with sizeable issuance, project registrations
Japan has issued more than 700,000 new offsets under its J-Credit scheme, increasing the total number of units created by almost a tenth, and registered over 30 new projects that can cut emissions by a total 7.3 million tonnes of CO2.
Australia Market Roundup: ACCU price rises 5.5% as market waits for more detail on Safeguard Mechanism
The spot price for Australian Carbon Credits Units (ACCU) has risen 5% following the accord struck between the Greens and the government to further strengthen the Safeguard Mechanism, as the market mulls how the reforms will play out.
Policy ambiguities will thwart Indonesia’s power sector transition, report says
Ambiguities in Indonesia’s stated energy policies will allow for the continued growth of the country’s coal-fired power capacity, even though there is currently an oversupply of thermal power generation and despite the recent financial deals with international partners which aim to accelerate the transition towards renewables, a report released on Tuesday has warned.
Fintech company partners with Thai govt agency on carbon market registry
A financial tech company has teamed up with a Thai government agency to integrate its digital platform into the national carbon registry to bring greater transparency to the country’s emerging emissions market.
Euro Markets: EUAs hold on to early gains after European Commission statement on REPowerEU auctions
European carbon prices rose on Tuesday as traders responded to a European Commission announcement on its plans to sell additional EUAs under the REPowerEU initiative, while energy markets reversed early losses.
EU CO2 cars law and other Fit for 55 files get signed off by energy ministers
EU energy ministers adopted on Tuesday a disputed regulation setting stricter CO2 emissions performance standards for new cars and vans, as well as other key files in the bloc’s Fit for 55 climate policy package.
Finnish startup raises cash for carbon negative concrete plans
A Finnish startup has raised €1.8 million to scale up the manufacture of carbon negative concrete and put the company on course to its goal of producing up to a fifth of the global market by mid-century.
Verra proposes revisions to cookstoves offset methodology inherited from CDM
Offset standards body and registry Verra on Tuesday launched a public consultation to seek feedback on planned revisions to its high efficiency firewood cookstoves methodology, which along with similar projects have recently come under fire for over-crediting by up to a factor of six.
US public would buy offsets if they knew about them, finds survey
Joe Public in the US would be willing to pay for carbon credits if they understood them, and knew about their own carbon footprint, a survey has found.
BIODIVERSITY (FREE TO READ)
TNFD releases long-awaited final draft on nature-related financial disclosure rules
The Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD) on Tuesday released its long-awaited last draft framework for managing and reporting risks and opportunities related to nature, ahead of the final rules slated for publication in September.
Campaigners urge investors to push reform in pesticide industry to help stave off biodiversity crisis
Financial institutions should push to transform key pesticide companies and their significant contributions to global biodiversity loss, financial market campaigners ShareAction have urged.
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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
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
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
Poor precedent – The United Arab Emirates tried to weaken global shipping’s climate target last week, sparking fears that it will lack ambition as host of the COP28 climate summit. According to four sources in the room, the UAE was one of around a dozen countries which argued against more ambitious climate targets at the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) last week, Climate Home reported. A spokesperson for the UAE’s COP28 presidency told Climate Home that IMO negotiations were outside of their scope but “the COP28 UAE presidency sees a substantial and important role for industries, including shipping, to deliver action to keep 1.5 alive”. In a seeming rebuke to their negotiator’s opposition to a 2030 target, the spokesperson added that the COP28 presidency echoes the IPCC scientists’ finding that carbon emissions must fall 43% between 2019 and 2030.
Insurance pressured – The Insure our Future consortium of 23 climate activist groups has called on 30 insurance company bosses to “immediately” stop underwriting new fossil fuel projects in the wake of this month’s stark climate warning from UN-backed scientists under the IPCC, a letter seen by Reuters showed. It was sent to companies including Munich Re, Zurich Insurance, and AXA. Other demands included stopping insurance for new fossil fuel customers not aligned with the 1.5C global warming limit goal, and adopting binding targets to reduce insured emissions by July 2023.
Motionless – Russia failed on Monday to get the UN Security Council to ask for an independent inquiry into explosions in September on the Nord Stream gas pipelines connecting Russia and Germany that spewed gas into the Baltic Sea, EurActiv reports. Only Russia, China, and Brazil voted in favour of the Russian-drafted text, while the remaining 12 council members abstained. A resolution needs at least nine votes in favour and no vetoes by Russia, China, France, the US, or the UK to pass. Russia proposed the draft resolution last month, just days before the first anniversary of its invasion of Ukraine. Read Carbon Pulse’s analysis on the potential emissions impact of the explosions.
Rising renewables – Electricity generated from renewables surpassed coal in the US for the first time in 2022, the Energy Information Administration announced Monday. Renewables also surpassed nuclear generation in 2022 after first doing so the previous year. Growth in wind and solar significantly drove the increase in renewable energy and contributed 14% of the electricity produced domestically in 2022. (AP)
Fully charged – Oregon’s Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) announced $13.3 mln in funding from the Oregon Zero-Emission Fueling Grant programme for 14 projects that will build a network of medium- and heavy-duty zero emission vehicle (ZEV) charging stations. The state legislature had established the pilot programme in 2022 through HB-5202 and HB-4139, the agency press release stated. The DEQ awarded grants in two categories: Capital Improvement Grants for projects ready to make eligible on-site structural alterations or repairs, and Technical Assistance Grants for projects requiring funds for research and planning future medium- and heavy-duty ZEV charging construction.
Committing capital – The Canada Infrastructure Bank (CIB), a crown corporation, committed C$277 mln to the Varennes Carbon Recycling biofuels facility under construction in Quebec, which is a C$1.2 bln joint venture between Shell, Suncor Energy, Swiss natural gas company Proman, and the government of Quebec, the Canadian Press reported on Monday. Montreal-based Enerkem is building the facility using its proprietary technology to produce biofuels and renewable chemicals out of landfill waste and wood waste. The plant will also incorporate one of the world’s largest electrolysers, which will split water molecules into oxygen and green hydrogen for use in its biofuel-making process. The Varennes carbon recycling facility is expected to convert more than 200,000 tonnes of non-recyclable waste into biofuels annually, with a capacity of up to 130 mln litres. Once completed in 2025, the plant will be the largest biofuels facility in Canada. Last year’s federal budget gave CIB the mandate to include clean fuel production, carbon capture utilisation and storage, and hydrogen production under its existing clean power and green infrastructure investment areas.
Done Deal — Brookfield Asset Management has sealed a deal to purchase Australian energy utility Origin Energy for A$18.7 bln, saying the agreement would pave the way for deploying A$20 bln in renewables and storage assets over the next decade to fast-track the company’s energy transition, RenewEconomy reports. The deal was made via a scheme of arrangement in conjunction with Mid-Ocean Energy, which will buy Origin’s LNG business, after months of negotiations and due diligence. The deal was sealed with the help of Singapore investment giants GIC and Temasek, who will be minor shareholders in the Origin energy business. Brookfield said it would also bring in Indian energy giant and solar module maker Reliance to collaborate on renewable energy. It is still subject to shareholder and regulatory approval, but the major hurdles have been negotiated. Brookfield says its plans will result in up to 14 GW of new large scale renewable and storage facilities in Australia.
Misleading – Australian environmental activist group Market Forces has lodged a complaint with the corporate watchdog alleging ANZ Bank misled investors in its description of a shareholder resolution on climate change at last year’s annual meeting, Sydney Morning Herald reports. Market Forces, which campaigns for banks to more aggressively limit fossil fuel lending, has recently written to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) alleging ANZ made “potentially misleading representations” regarding the activist group’s resolution at a meeting in December. The resolution, which was opposed by ANZ’s board, was rejected by 90.75% of proxy votes. It sought to have ANZ disclose information showing how its financing would not be used for new fossil fuel projects or to expand existing projects. In prepared remarks at the meeting on Dec. 15, ANZ chairman Paul O’Sullivan said: “It is clear that those who have lodged this resolution are seeking an immediate withdrawal of financing for companies that continue to have any exposure to fossil fuels.”
New move – China has started using solid hydrogen for electricity generation as two hydrogen power stations operated by China Southern Power Grid were connected to the grid last Saturday, state-owned news agency CGTN reports. One of the stations, Nansha Smart Hydrogen Station, is located in Guangzhou and contains seven advanced solid hydrogen storage facilities. The use of such technique can solve the problem of unreliability and seasonal fluctuations in renewable energy generation, according to the report.
CORSIA updates – UN aviation body ICAO’s 36-member Council on Monday announced it has updated a range of international aviation emissions standards during its ongoing 228th session in Montreal. A new amendment to Annex 16 of the Chicago Convention helps clarify the monitoring, reporting, and verification requirements relating to the global offsetting scheme CORSIA. That amendment also lays out a new CORSIA offsetting threshold for smaller air carriers, confirms the offsetting calculation to be applied by new operators that do not qualify as ‘new entrants’, and formalises alignment adjustments according to recently updated ISO Standards, and the outcomes of ICAO’s 41st Assembly in October.
Climate lockdown – The first-ever climate case to be put before the European Court of Human Rights features more than 2,000 senior women suing the Swiss government for their “climate lockdown” due to the intense heat forcing them to stay home, Reuters reports. The submission, set to be followed by two more this year, could result in an emissions cut order that goes beyond Paris Agreement commitments, setting an important precedent. Eight other governments (Romania, Latvia, Austria, Slovakia, Norway, Italy, Portugal, and Ireland) have joined the case.
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