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The world’s carbon markets and tax regimes were collectively worth just under $50 billion last year, little changed from 2014’s levels, though governments were able to raise 60% more through the schemes, according to a joint report by the World Bank and consultancy Ecofys.
California and Quebec sold 8.2 million, or just over 10% of the total 77.75 million allowances put up for sale in the pair’s recent carbon auction, held on May 18.
The Dutch government wants to further strengthen the EU ETS but is against implementing a minimum carbon price, joining Germany in showing reluctance towards France’s price corridor proposal.
Australia is but a couple of administrative adjustments to its Safeguard Mechanism away from having its own carbon market, according to observers, but with its July 2 general election nearing the government insists it will not go down that path despite promising the mechanism will achieve major emission cuts by 2030.
Poland’s auction for 3.526 million spot EUAs was cancelled on Wednesday due to low bidding interest, sale hosts EEX said, causing EU carbon prices to fall by at least 20 cents or 3.4%.
European carbon prices shrugged off the first cancelled EUA auction in more than three years to finish Wednesday higher.
A yawning gap has emerged between the carbon prices that IETA members expect and those they think are needed to meet the objectives of the Paris Agreement, a survey showed.
A Russian business association has launched a voluntary registry of carbon-cutting projects in a bid to kickstart mitigation activities in the world’s fourth biggest emitting nation, as Moscow drags its heels on establishing mandatory measures.
Alberta Environment Minister Shannon Phillips on Tuesday introduced legislation to bring the Canadian province’s new carbon tax and planned offset trading system for industrial into law.
The EU’s steel, cement and chemicals sectors are able to reduce their CO2 emissions by more than 80% under 1990 levels by 2050 while maintaining or even enhancing their global competitiveness with measures including a reformed ETS, a report found.
With two auctions under the World Bank’s Pilot Auction Facility for Methane and Climate Change Mitigation complete, this pilot is ready to take off to the next phase – and while we’re exploring different destinations, we are confident we are flying in the right direction, writes the bank’s Scott Cantor.
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Exxon rejection – At Exxon’s annual general meeting on Wednesday, the company’s board of directors recommended rejection of all nine non-binding climate resolutions brought to the meeting by shareholders, 38.2% of which voted in favour of the measures.
A senator picks his fights – Roy Blunt, a Republican senator from Missouri, has introduced a non-binding resolution aiming to ensure a carbon tax would never be approved by the US Senate. “Imposing a national tax on the types of energy we rely on most would drive up costs for hard-working families and run our economy into the ground,” he said. “This resolution puts the Senate on record against a carbon tax, and I hope my colleagues will join me in protecting all Americans from this misguided policy.” The resolution immediately received the backing of a 25-member coalition of ‘free-market’ groups led by the conservative American Energy Alliance, reports the Washington Examiner.
Finnish emissions down – Finland’s GHG emissions fell 6% in 2015 to 55.7 mtCO2e and now stand 22% below 1990 levels, according to preliminary data from Statistics Finland. ETS sector emissions fell 3.3%, mostly due to lower consumption of coal and natural gas.
Going green(er) – China’s Shenhua Group, the world’s biggest coal supplier, is feeling the pressure of falling coal prices as profits plunged 50% last year. Over the past two years the company has cut coal production by 95 million tonnes and sales by 170 million tonnes. Meanwhile it is putting increasingly more cash into renewables. (Xinhua)
And finally… History lessons – Business group IETA has unveiled at Carbon Expo the first chapter of its oral history of the carbon market, From Kyoto to Paris. It features interviews with key players in the market’s growth, including negotiators, government officials, project developers, traders and lawyers. “There are strong parallels between where the market is now and what the early entrepreneurs faced – only this time, there is no need to start everything from scratch,” said IETA President and CEO Dirk Forrister. The first chapter is available online and focuses on the Kyoto Protocol negotiations and the role markets played in the 1997 negotiations. Subsequent chapters will look at the EU ETS, the growth of the CDM, the role of carbon funds, and the Paris Agreement, among other topics. Each week, IETA will release another video chapter of the story and in early July, the book will be released via online marketplace Amazon.
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