CP Daily: Monday December 11, 2017

Published 02:36 on December 12, 2017  /  Last updated at 02:55 on December 12, 2017  /  Newsletters  /  No Comments

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

CP Daily will not be published Dec. 23-Jan. 1. Carbon Pulse will file stories and send out CP Alerts on merit during that period. Regular coverage will resume Jan. 2.

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TOP STORY

Australia’s “well-functioning” ERF at risk of under delivering, review finds

Australia’s Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF) is generally performing well but is at risk of delivering fewer emission cuts than anticipated, and the government should take action to limit that, a review by an independent advisory body has found.

EMEA

Utilities, investors await EU ETS certainty before buying in earnest -ICIS analysts

Utilities and an increasing amount of finance houses will likely wait until post-2020 EU ETS reforms are made law early next year to start buying EUAs in anticipation of higher future prices, ICIS analysts said on Monday.

EU Market: EUAs turn upwards after extending 5-week low on another weak auction

EU carbon prices turned upwards late on Monday after extending their five-week low on a weak auction, though buyers prevented the benchmark contract from dropping below a key support level above €7.

ASIA PACIFIC

AIIB’s first China investment targets carbon emissions

The China-backed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) on Monday approved a $250 million loan to a project that aims to boost China’s efforts in switching from coal to gas.

NZ Market: Momentum carries NZUs to extended highs

New Zealand carbon allowances hit fresh highs on Monday as momentum continued to push up prices in anticipation of government amendments to the scheme.

AMERICAS

Factors other than politics at play in lacklustre Ontario auction, say market participants

Several other factors may have influenced last month’s lacklustre Ontario carbon allowance auction result besides heightened political uncertainty, several market participants say.

INTERNATIONAL

Global forest carbon finance falls 25% in 2016, report finds

Global funding for efforts to store carbon in forests dropped 25% to $662.1 million in 2016, according to Ecosystem Marketplace’s annual report on the state of forest carbon finance.

VOLUNTARY

BNP Paribas to launch voluntary carbon market platform next year

A division of French bank BNP Paribas is launching a voluntary carbon offset platform to help connect investors and other credit buyers with project developers.

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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD

Slashed for burning – Norway has made good on its threat to slash its annual payments to Brazil for protecting the Amazon rainforest. It cut disbursements 60% to $42 million after a rise in forest destruction in 2016, but welcomed signs that losses have slowed this year. (Reuters) 

Tsunami of dataThe communications industry could use 20% of all the world’s electricity by 2025, hampering global attempts to meet climate change targets and straining grids as demand by power-hungry server farms storing digital data from billions of smartphones, tablets and internet-connected devices grows exponentially. The industry has long argued that it can considerably reduce carbon emissions by increasing efficiency and reducing waste, but academics are challenging industry assumptions. A new paper, due to be published by US researchers later this month, will forecast that information and communications technology, or ICT, could create up to 3.5% of global emissions by 2020 – surpassing aviation and shipping – and up to 14% 2040 – around the same proportion as the US today. (Climate Home)

Coal shift – The EU has launched a cross-stakeholder Coal Regions in Transition Platform to help smooth the transition away from coal-fired power in the bloc’s 41 regions in 12 EU member states. Following requests by Slovakia, Poland and Greece, pilot country teams were established in the second half of 2017 to assist the regions of Trencin, Silesia and Western Macedonia and will be extended as others join. (EurActiv) 

Tiny feet – Building solar, wind or nuclear plants creates an insignificant carbon footprint compared with savings from avoiding fossil fuels, a new study suggests. The research, published in Nature Energy, measures the full lifecycle GHG emissions of a range of sources of electricity out to 2050. It shows that the carbon footprint of solar, wind and nuclear power are many times lower than coal or gas with carbon capture and storage (CCS). This remains true after accounting for emissions during manufacture, construction and fuel supply. (Carbon Brief)

Reliable – Offshore wind farms produce electricity more reliably than previously thought, a study by research institute Fraunhofer IWES has shown. Wind turbines in the German North- and Baltic Sea produce power on 363 days a year, while older data from 2013 had seen generation on 340 days. Germany has a capacity of 5 GW in offshore wind power installed. Industry organisation Foundation Offshore Wind Energy says that the new figures show how offshore wind power can provide electricity in a more constant and predictable way, compared to onshore wind and solar power. (Clean Energy Wire)

No new tax – The New Brunswick government will not impose a new direct tax on consumers when it introduces legislation for carbon pricing on Thursday, said a government source. The source told The Canadian Press that the provincial legislation will include greater emphasis on energy efficiency programmes, impose new regulations on heavy industry and re-purpose existing taxes on gasoline and diesel fuel to fund programs to fight climate change. The source said the heaviest industrial emitters will face more rigorous performance standards than those now in place. If true, the move would follow Saskatchewan, which last week proposed a new climate change initiative that does not feature a firm carbon price. New Brunswick province is expected to unveil its carbon pricing programme in the weeks or months to come.

Taking names – The Shanghai government has released the names of 298 companies that are covered by the municipal ETS in 2017 (yes, that’s 2017). That’s 12 fewer than last year although the list included 13 companies that have not previously been covered. No allocation numbers were revealed. The new entrants included Cepsa Chemical Shanghai, a subsidiary of Spanish oil firm Cepsa. The list is available here (in Chinese)

DIY – The Australian Capital Territory (ACT) – Australia’s smallest state – on Monday released a white paper outlining a revamp of its climate policy. ACT had already pledged to go net carbon neutral by 2050, but the new paper proposed to move the target date forward to 2045. Based on advice from the state climate council it also proposed to rule out buying offsets should it miss its targets, and instead spend additional money per tonne of CO2e missed to cut emissions locally.

#FakeNews fightback – DeSmog UK has launched a “Climate Disinformation Database”, which it describes as “a quick and easy tool for the public, policymakers, researchers, and journalists to check who they’re dealing with on climate science and policy”. The database currently has 70 entries, which are split into four categories: government players, the fossil fuel industry, climate science deniers and think tanks, and the behind-the-scenes donors.

And finally… Strings attached – Scotland-based KITE Power Systems, which generates electricity from flying kites, has declared it will have a commercially viable solution within five years, which can be deployed in the developing world and in remote areas without grid access. The business is in a race-to-market with a Californian company owned by Google parent Alphabet. (The Herald)

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