CP Daily: Friday June 21, 2024

Published 01:47 on June 22, 2024  /  Last updated at 01:52 on June 22, 2024  / Carbon Pulse /  Newsletters

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

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TOP STORY

EU publishes long-awaited rules for permanently storing carbon in products to avoid ETS costs

EU long-awaited rules are out on the criteria for what constitutes permanent carbon storage in products, providing clarity to firms as to how they can avoid purchasing allowances in the bloc’s ETS.

INTERNATIONAL

BRIEFING: Switzerland concerned about Chile’s Article 6 regulation, project pending

The Swiss entity managing Article 6 dealings with Chile has expressed concerns about the country’s draft authorisation procedures, confirming that a wind farm project remains under consideration, despite national media in the host country reporting a done deal.

International carbon credit developers to launch new lobby group in Brussels

Multiple international carbon project developers are set to come together to launch a Brussels-based lobby group to protect and promote the use of voluntary credit use in climate mitigation, according to the EU’s transparency register.

VOLUNTARY

New insurance brings warranties from M&A into voluntary carbon market

The first warranty and indemnity (W&I) insurance policy in the voluntary carbon market (VCM) has been arranged, a broker announced Friday, lifting due diligence and risk transfer procedures from the world of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in hopes of providing buyer-side assurances of supplier-side reliability.

Article 6 cookstove carbon credit supply builds in Verra registry, but few retirements

More than 2.4 million cookstove carbon credits have been tagged with an Article 6 authorisation label in the Verra registry but only a tiny number have been retired, data shows Friday.

New study challenges effectiveness of tree-planting as climate change solution

A new study has cast doubts on the long-term effectiveness of large-scale tree-planting projects in sequestering CO2, with current climate models potentially overestimating the duration of retention while underestimating the impact of climate change on forests.

EMEA

INTERVIEW: Carbon farming to make EU debut with Ireland launching first framework

This summer, Ireland will launch its carbon farming framework, the first of its kind to be proposed for adoption in a European country, in collaboration with EIT Climate-KIC, a climate innovation initiative co-funded by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology.

EU inaugurates green innovation hub in Seville

The European Commission on Friday launched its brand new Innovation Centre for Industrial Transformation (INCITE) in Seville, aiming to accelerate the decarbonisation of energy-intensive industries to reach climate neutrality by mid-century.

Euro Markets: EUAs ease 0.2% on the week as carbon resumes tight correlation to TTF gas

After a steady opening on Friday, EU carbon prices drifted for much of the day before finding support to end the week little changed, while natural gas prices also followed a slow but steady downward path, reinforcing the view that carbon has resumed its previous close correlation to TTF prices.

AMERICAS

DOE, EPA allocate $850 mln to reduce oil and gas methane emissions

The US Department of Energy (DOE) and the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced Friday that $850 million in federal funding was being made available for projects to reduce methane emissions from the oil and gas industry.

California water purifier plant with carbon removal to start up in 2026

A California-based water purifier facility with direct air capture (DAC) carbon removal is poised to begin operations in 2026, the firm announced.

ASIA PACIFIC

South Korea to deepen Paris partnership with Vietnam

South Korea and Vietnam have decided to strengthen their cooperation on climate change, with the development of pilot Article 6 projects at the top of the agenda.

Uzbekistan becomes first country to receive World Bank payment for sale of policy-based carbon credits

Uzbekistan has become the first country to receive a payment of $7.5 million from the World Bank for the sale of carbon credits from policy reforms that have slashed its carbon emissions by half a million tonnes.

Experts, investors baulk at Australian opposition’s proposals on nuclear, capping renewables

Multiple experts and asset owners have raised a number of issues with the Australian opposition’s thinly-detailed nuclear energy proposal, while renewable energy developers urged stakeholders not be distracted by the idea.

Indonesia’s Pertamina lays out transition plan in sustainable finance framework

Indonesian state-owned energy company Pertamina has unveiled a sustainable finance framework which it says will align its sustainability efforts with its funding strategy.

South Australia releases green iron and steel strategy, calls for industry collaboration

The South Australian state government has published a green iron and steel strategy and put a call out to global industry to help it figure out how it can underpin investment in the nascent sector.

CN Markets: CEA price drops to three-month low amid lingering regulatory uncertainty

China’s national emissions trading scheme (ETS) saw its spot price over the past week fall to a three-month low, as the lack of policy updates continues to weigh on market sentiment.

South Korea releases national biogas development strategy

South Korea has rolled out a national strategy for the development of the biogas sector, a move it says can help cut millions tonnes of CO2e emissions over the coming years.

AVIATION/SHIPPING

Air cargo firm launches carbon removal service blending DAC and SAF

An international air cargo firm has launched a new carbon removal service, which blends direct air capture (DAC) with carbon emissions reductions achieved via sustainable aviation fuel (SAF).

BIODIVERSITY (FREE TO READ)

NGOs call for cancelling ‘disastrous’ oil permit in Rep. of Congo’s most biodiverse protected area

Human rights activists in the Republic of Congo (RoC) and other NGOs have called for the revocation of an oil exploration permit in Conkouati-Douli National Park, saying it will gravely threaten the most biodiverse protected area in the country.

GEF Council gives green light to $730-mln spending as pressure mounts on GBF Fund to deliver

The Global Environment Facility (GEF) Council has approved the spending of $736.4 million on hastening efforts to tackle biodiversity loss, climate change, and chemicals and waste pollution, as its CEO urged rich countries to ramp up contributions to the Global Biodiversity Framework Fund (GBFF).

Australian ministers agree 2030 biodiversity targets, include OECMs in Nature Repair Market

Australian federal and state environment ministers on Friday agreed on an ambition to protect and conserve 30% of land and sea by 2030 and a number of other ambitions that the country will take to the biodiversity COP in Colombia later this year, while also agreeing to include Other Effective land-based Conservation Measures (OECMs) in the Nature Repair Market.

Carbon registry launches biodiversity programme, gears up for listing credits

Iceland-based International Carbon Registry (ICR) announced on Thursday the launch of its pilot biodiversity programme in an effort to develop a framework for project developers planning to issue voluntary biodiversity credits.

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CONFERENCES

Carbon Forward Expo – October 8-10, London and Online: Save the date! More info coming soon…

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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD

AVIATION

Up for grabs – Since becoming the first country to meet the requirements for delivering carbon credits that are eligible for use under CORSIA’s first phase (2024-26), Guyana’s President Irfaan Ali this week announced that his administration is now holding discussions with industry stakeholders following the Architecture for REDD+ Transactions (ART TREES) issuance of 7.14 mln vintage-2021 units earlier this year. “We have commercial discussions and engagement with airlines and not only did we certify, we have commenced commercial discussions and engagement with airlines for sale of Guyana eligible carbon credit for that market,” Ali said at a press conference, without offering further details. A total 2.5 mln of these credits have already been sold at a floor price of $20 per tonne, the government announced in February, meaning at most 4.64 mln credits were available to other buyers. (Guyana Standard)

EMEA

State aid – The EU Commission approved a €3 bln German scheme for the construction of the Hydrogen Core Network, to be the backbone of long-distance transport pipelines for hydrogen in Germany and other member states. The construction and operation of the HCN will be financed by hydrogen transmission system operators, who will be selected by the German federal network agency. The aid will take the form of a state guarantee. At first, Germany expects only a small number of consumers to be using the network, and the tariffs will be lower than otherwise needed to cover relevant costs, to encourage this use and facilitate the uptake of hydrogen.

Poland’s long-term strategy – Poland’s development strategy to 2035 and the social and climate plan for 2026-2032 will be ready within a year, according to the Polish Ministry of Funds and Regional Policy (MFiPR). The Socio-Climatic plan will also prepare for Poland’s entry into ETS2, relying heavily on the Social Climate Fund.

Brexit reset – German MEP Terry Reintke has said that if – as polls are widely predicting – a Labour government is elected in the UK next month, then there will be a “reset” in relations between the UK and the EU. Speaking to The i, a centrist British newspaper, Reintke in particular underlined the opportunity for the UK to align more closely with the EU with its ETS, as something that would be both beneficial to the climate and to UK industry.

ASIA PACIFIC

Biochar project – Japanese biochar solution developer Towing has started a demonstration project in Hokkaido through cooperation with domestic partners including Nomura Securities and agritech startup Sagri, it said in a release this week. Towing aims to help reduce the use of chemical fertilisers by applying its soil improvement solution to the agricultural lands for sweet corn (1,400 m2) and pumpkin (1,000 m2), according to the statement. The company also said it will work with the Nomura Group to utilise the carbon credit system for the Hokkaido project.

AMERICAS

Backdoor carbon tax? – Some of the nation’s largest oil companies have been raising concerns with congressional Republicans over bipartisan legislation that would study the carbon intensity of nearly two-dozen industrial products, including crude oil, reported E&E News. The bill has been maligned by some on the right as a precursor to a carbon tariff and a potential backdoor to a domestic carbon tax. A version of the bill passed the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee in January. Five people close to the negotiations around the bill — the “Providing Reliable, Objective, Verifiable Emissions Intensity and Transparency (PROVE IT) Act” — said House Republicans have been contacted in recent weeks by representatives from Valero, Marathon Petroleum, and Koch Industries.

Youth notch legal victory – Hawaii and young climate activists have reached a first-of-its kind legal settlement, giving youth a role in curbing planet-warming emissions while avoiding a major trial that was set to begin next week, reported Climate Wire. The agreement announced Thursday requires the Hawaii Department of Transportation to develop a plan to fully decarbonise ground, sea, and interisland air travel by 2045. It also created a youth council to provide feedback to the state agency. Under the settlement, Hawaii agreed to make immediate investments in clean transportation infrastructure, including completing a pedestrian, bicycle, and transit network in five years and dedicating a minimum of $40 mln to expand the public EV charging network by 2030. (E&E News)

Offsetting highway emissions – The recent expansion of a ground-breaking transportation law in Minnesota means all major highway projects in the state will soon be scrutinised for their climate impact. The Legislature passed a new law in 2023 requiring the Minnesota transportation department and the Twin Cities’ regional planning agency to begin assessing whether highway expansion projects are consistent with state climate goals. A follow-up bill passed this spring expands the 2023 law to include all major highway projects statewide that exceed a $15 mln budget in the Twin Cities or $5 mln outside the metro, regardless of whether they would add new driving lanes. The law requires planners to offset projected increases in GHG emissions and vehicle miles travelled to qualify for state or federal highway dollars. (Energy News Network)

From farms to climate solutions – A team of researchers from the University of Wisconsin-led Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center mapped millions of acres of abandoned US farmland in a study published in the journal Environmental Research Letters. Knowing where this abandoned land is could help people evaluate it for different uses, including solar power production, carbon storage, and biofuels production. The detailed analysis found that less than 20% of the abandoned cropland was enrolled in the USDA’s Conservation Reserve Program, leaving the rest open to other uses. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

CCUS partnership – Canadian gas company Enerflex has partnered with BASF, the largest chemical producer in the world, to facilitate the commercial scale deployment of carbon capture, utilisation, and storage applications, they announced in a joint release. Under the partnership, Enerflex will combine its expertise in engineering, manufacturing, and integration of gas processing and compression systems, with BASF’s OASE blue technology for flue gas and post-combustion CO2 capture. Through the partnership, entities will further reduce greenhouse gas emissions for their clients.

VOLUNTARY

DAC attack – CarbonCapture Inc. unveiled its first direct air capture (DAC) module designed for mass production in the US today near Los Angeles. This module, part of the Leo Series, aims to significantly scale up the absorption of CO2, capturing over 500 tonnes per year per unit. The design allows for mass production, the company said, with a factory planned in Mesa, Arizona, capable of producing 4,000 units annually. The development is seen as important as current DAC technology is costly and energy-intensive, making scaling a challenge. The Leo Series modules, comparable in size to standard shipping containers, use sorbents to capture CO2, with potential future upgrades to enhance efficiency. The modular approach could reduce costs similarly to how larger solar arrays have become more economical over time. The company, which recently secured $80 mln in Series A funding, including contributions from Aramco Ventures and the Amazon Climate Pledge Fund, plans to deploy these modules starting next year. The factory will not only supply these modules but also support Project Bison in Wyoming and the Southwest Regional Direct Air Capture Hub, both backed by the US Department of Energy under a $3.5 bln programme. (Axios)

AND FINALLY…

Climate-conscious Catan – The latest edition of the popular board game Catan marks a shift from the pre-industrial era to the 21st century – and a time of climate crisis, CNN reported. Catan is a 30-year-old game about collecting and using resources such as bricks and lumber to build and expand settlements in a fictional world. But in the latest edition, Catan: New Energies, players must build fossil fuel or renewable power plants in order to gather energy. Their choices come with consequences such as pushing up greenhouse gases and raising the risk of flooding, air pollution, or other climate-related events. Catan is not the only game to begin incorporating climate change in recent years, CNN reported. Others include the empire-building video game Civilization 6, which released an expansion in 2019 called Gathering Storm, where player actions such as burning coal can lead to repercussions such as rising sea levels.

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