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EU carbon prices dropped below €4 to within reach of a three-year low on Monday amid worries over political uncertainty in the euro zone and mounting prospects that this week’s EU Parliament vote on ETS reform will be cancelled.
Korea’s Ministry of Strategy and Finance has proposed to allow the use of CERs in its emissions trading scheme from 2018, three years earlier than previously planned but with rules that would limit eligibility to projects implemented by domestic companies.
UK MEP Ian Duncan has requested the vote on the post-2020 EU ETS reform bill be postponed one week to Dec.15, citing “positive developments” in negotiations between political groups.
The Australian government will consider introducing an emissions trading scheme for electricity generators during its 2017 climate policy review, Environment Minister Josh Frydenberg confirmed Monday.
Ontario is looking at facilitating more voluntary participation in both its cap-and-trade scheme and offsetting programme, according to an official with the Canadian province’s environment ministry.
California’s Air Resources Board (ARB) unveiled a draft scoping plan on how to meet the state’s 2030 emission goal late on Friday, giving stakeholders two weeks to submit views ahead of a full version due in January.
Exchange operator ICE will offer trade in Ontario emissions allowances from January.
Job listings this week:
General Manager, Carbon Market Institute – Melbourne
Legal Counsel, GreenStream – Helsinki
Research Fellow or Associate, Climate Change Policy, SEI – Oxford, UK
International Climate Finance Expert, CTG Global – Mogadishu, Somalia
Knowledge Leader Adaptation, International Climate Change Policy, Ricardo – London/Oxfordshire
Or click here to see all our job adverts
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Pipe up Dakota – The US federal government via the Army Corps of Engineers on Sunday turned down the request for an easement for the Dakota Access Pipeline to build under the Missouri River, after months of protests from Native American and climate activists. However, President-elect Donald Trump said for the first time he supports the oil project, teeing up a further battle once he takes office in January. (Reuters)
Trump picks coming – Trump has dropped a hint that most of his remaining cabinet picks will be announced this week, including the heads of the energy department (DOE) and environment agency (EPA). The WSJ reported that billionaire investor and EPA critic Carl Icahn was helping Trump vet candidates, including interviewing coal lobbyist Jeff Holmstead. Top contenders for EPA include director of the energy and environment center at the Texas Public Policy Foundation Kathleen Harnett White, Oklahoma Attorney-General Scott Pruitt, and North Carolina’s top environmental regulator Donald Van der Vaart. Meanwhile, Politico reports that Trump may lean towards giving the DOE job to a Democratic appointee. (H/T Climate Nexus)
Court update – The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in a surprise order is scheduling April oral arguments in a case that challenges EPA’s greenhouse gas rule for new power plants, with at least one source noting to Inside EPA that the order is unusual because it was issued in the midst of briefing, and the court generally waits until briefing is complete before slating arguments. ($)
Utah carbon tax – A Democratic lawmaker in the state’s House of Representatives has floated a bill to introduce a carbon tax. Joel Briscoe said the tax would be ‘revenue neutral’, with funding earmarked for education or infrastructure initiatives. “Utah is currently 46th in the nation for renewable energy production. Given our geography and resources Utah should be a leader in generating our energy from renewable sources,” he said in a Facebook post. The bill seems unlikely to pass as Republicans control 61 of the house’s 75 seats.
No leakage here – Only a small minority of EU ETS-regulated German multinational companies have relocated out of the EU and those were firms are not in high-emitting sectors that tend to be deemed at risk of carbon leakage, according to researchers at Germany’s Mercator Research Institute and the University of Hamburg, who concluded that the potential for such leakage may therefore be “reasonably limited”. (Social Science Research Network)
A few euros short – The EU could miss its climate spending targets due to fragmented funding and inflated numbers, warns the European Court of Auditors. (Climate Home)
GE’s flying green – GE Australia has joined the Qantas Future Planet programme, in which the airline manages carbon offset portfolios for its corporate customers and providing them with access to more than 40 certified offset projects in Australia and overseas, GreenAir Online reports. Most of GE’s offsetting is expected to support Australia-based projects that have significant community benefits as well as reducing carbon emissions, such as the North Kimberley fire abatement project lead by native title groups in Western Australia.
And finally… The unlikeliest of meetings – Former US Vice President and climate change activist Al Gore met with Trump and his daughter Ivanka Trump to discuss climate policy. According to the BBC, the meeting “was a sincere search for areas of common ground,” said Gore, who added “the bulk of the time was with the president-elect. I found it an extremely interesting conversation, and to be continued.” A source last week told Politico that Ivanka Trump appears serious about taking on climate change as one of her “signature issues”, despite her father’s apparent scepticism towards the issue.
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