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France’s idea for an EU carbon price corridor would not require unanimity among all 28 member states but may still risk uncertainty if tested, according to a legal opinion commissioned by its supporters on Thursday.
A secondary market for government-issued carbon offsets is emerging in Australia where prices are driven by Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF) auctions, but it is unlikely to mature unless the government introduces new policies such as tighter baselines under the Safeguard Mechanism, market participants say.
Persisting demand pushed New Zealand carbon allowances to fresh five-year highs for the third consecutive day on Thursday, with hesitant sellers adding to the momentum.
Just over a third of 300,000 available Korean Allowance Units (KAUs) sold in the second of South Korea’s three planned auctions this week, as strict rules on participation limited demand and kept a lid on prices.
European carbon prices have entered a new upward trend after the previous one was derailed by a sharp sell-off earlier this year, according to French investment bank Societe Generale.
European carbon prices climbed back above €6 on Thursday, lifted by higher power and fuel prices.
The National Development and Reform Commission on Thursday issued carbon offsets to 44 projects, most of which will find their way to the Hubei market, and approved three new project methodologies.
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
German ambition – The EU should “keep open the option of raising” its 2030 climate goals before 2020, a German environment ministry official told a conference in Brussels, Mlex reports. The bloc should conduct an early review of its emission target of cutting 30% from sectors such as agriculture, transport, buildings and waste, Jasper Braam said. He also said that the EU needed to use more accurate emissions data in order to avoid falling short of the target. (H/T Clean Energy Wire)
German demand – Germany’s energy consumption in the first three months of 2016 was little higher than during the same period in the previous year, the AG Energiebilanzen reports. Usage of oil, natural gas (2% more) and renewables (5% more) increased while consumption from hard coal (4% less), lignite (4% less) and nuclear power (7% less) fell. Wind power increased its share in total energy consumption in Germany by 12%, while the share of solar PV dropped by 8%. (H/T Clean Energy Wire)
Coal rethink – The new Philippine administration needs to review dozens of coal-fired power projects now under way or still on the drawing board as it seeks increased use of renewable energy, the country’s incoming economic planning chief said, according to Reuters.
Brexit’s a nice idea, but we’re neutral – The simplicity of not having to deal with the EU officials would be “desirable”, the CEO of British utility Drax has admitted, despite insisting the company was “neutral” on Brexit. Dorothy Thompson said the coal and biomass power plant company’s board had “a very long debate” about the UK’s membership of the EU before deciding on a position of neutrality. “We see clear advantages to being in the EU, but we also recognise the strength of the UK,” she told the Telegraph.
Frack no! – The Scottish parliament has voted narrowly in favour of a ban on fracking, after Scottish National party MSPs abstained following a debate that gave a strong indication of the changed nature of the new Holyrood chamber. (Guardian)
Dinning’s in – Former Alberta Finance Minister Jim Dinning says it’s time for conservative parties to “stop dragging our knuckles” and back the idea of a carbon tax, according to the Calgary Herald. Dinning, an adviser to Canada’s Ecofiscal Commission, is one of the authors of a recent opinion piece that is supportive of the carbon levy being introduced by Alberta’s NDP government on Jan. 1, 2017.
And finally… Kerry on Trump: “Utter, unbelievable, contemptuous ignorance” – According to Politco, Secretary of State John Kerry lit into Donald Trump over his pledge to rip up the Paris climate agreement if elected. Doing so would be “reckless, counterproductive, self-destructive. It would be an act of extraordinary danger to our country. … And it would in the end be an act of ignorance, of utter, unbelievable, contemptuous ignorance,” Kerry told MSNBC on Wednesday, pointing to rising temperatures, extreme weather and “refugees that are being created in various parts of the world as a result of lack of water or fights over food,” among other effects of climate change. “To talk about just causally without understanding the work that went into it or the rationale for it, ripping it up would be one of the most reckless, irresponsible, historically wrong acts I can think of, and I think that people are waking up now to the fact that the solution to climate change is actually energy policy” that can both create jobs and clean up the environment, Kerry concluded.
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