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EU ETS emissions rose by 0.8% in 2017, marking the first increase in seven years, according to preliminary like-for-like data released by the European Commission on Tuesday.
Austria supports efforts to set a minimum carbon price under the EU ETS as a “useful complement” to the bloc’s carbon market, according to an environment ministry document released Tuesday.
Energy Aspects has again significantly raised its forecasts for EU carbon prices for the next few years in light of the ongoing rally and due to what it says is a lack of any obvious sell-off triggers on the horizon.
EU carbon prices tumbled to a one-week low on Tuesday after one of the weakest auctions of the year, though prices recovered on somewhat bullish ETS emissions data.
Forestry management firm PF Olsen has put up for sale a portfolio of eight forests, of which several have opted into the New Zealand emissions trading scheme.
British Columbia’s carbon tax, which had been frozen at since 2012, rose C$5 on Sunday to C$35 (US$27.10), making it the highest carbon price in North America.
The decline of US energy-related CO2 emissions slowed in 2017 due to a rise in output from the transportation and industrial sectors, a pace at which the country will fall short of its Paris target, according to analysis from researchers Rhodium Group.
The Carbon Tracker Initiative has hired a veteran carbon analyst as managing director and head of research, as the UK-based think-tank moves into the emissions trading and CO2 pricing space.
Below is a table of the closing prices, ranges and volumes for China’s regional pilot carbon markets this week. All prices are in RMB, and volumes in tonnes of CO2e. Data sourced from local exchanges.
CARBON FORWARD 2018
Don’t miss the 3rd annual Carbon Forward conference and training day. Spend two days with top experts, players, and decision-makers from the global carbon markets as they address today’s most attractive opportunities and pressing challenges. And join us for the EU ETS pre-conference training day organised by carbon market experts Redshaw Advisors, where you will learn how to effectively manage your carbon risk ahead of the looming overhaul of the bloc’s emissions trading scheme.
Job listings this week:
- Assistant Director for Press and Communications, Climate Policy and Programs, New York City Mayor’s Office – New York City
- Corporate Engagement Manager, We Mean Business – Remote working (Europe/US)
- Policy Manager, We Mean Business – Remote working (Europe/US)
Or click here to see all our job adverts
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Vehicular volatility – The US EPA announced on Monday that it will begin the process of rolling back Obama-era vehicle emissions standards, a victory for automakers that had lobbied the Trump administration against the 2012 regulation. Agency head Scott Pruitt said the Obama-era EPA had set the average fleet economy standard for the 2022-2025 period too high, and would instead be creating new standards with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Yet, the EPA said it had not made a decision on California’s ability to craft higher vehicle emissions standards than those federally, which could possibly split the nation’s car market in two, with 12 states comprising one-third of all US car sales following California’s lead. (Bloomberg)
Last gasp – After announcing last week that it would close all three of its nuclear plants, the competitive generation subsidiary of US-based electric utility First Energy Corp. filed for bankruptcy. First Energy Solutions prefaced the move last week by asking the US Department of Energy (DOE) to stabilise market conditions in the PJM Interconnection market by providing cost recovery to nuclear and coal plants. However, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) rejected a similar proposal from DOE in January, saying that existing market rules were neither unjust nor unreasonable to warrant cost recovery. (Utility Dive)
Permission Granted – The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) granted US oil and gas firm EOG Resources’ request to block a shareholder climate change proposal. Last December, after shareholders requested that EOG set targets to reduce emissions, the company complained to the SEC claiming the proposal sought to ‘micromanage’ the company and asking it to be omitted from consideration. The SEC sided with EOG, allowing the company to pre-emptively kill a climate change resolution – an unprecedented move by the commission. (Axios)
Chop ’em down – German energy company RWE has the right to clear the Hambach Forest and continue lignite mining in the western German state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), website klimaretter.info reports. Authorities issued a license for RWE, after mining and logging activities stopped last year following a lawsuit by environmental NGO Friends of the Earth Germany. Authorities argued that clearing the forest is acceptable as there are “enough” protected areas in the region. (Clean Energy Wire)
Summer scenarios – Limiting global warming to 1.5 C above pre-industrial levels could significantly curtail the risk of ice-free Arctic summers, according to two new studies. The studies, both published in Nature Climate Change, found that keeping warming to 1.5 C would likely result in only 2.5% of Arctic summers being ice-free, or about one in every forty years. That rate increases to between 19 and 34%, or once every three to five years, if global warming is capped at 2 C. The results for 3 C of warming are even bleaker, with ice-free summers happening more often than every other year by 2100. (Carbon Brief)
And finally… Pressing Pruitt – White House Chief of Staff John Kelly has considered firing EPA head Scott Pruitt but opted to put that decision on hold, according to a senior administration official. While the move was supposed to come during a spat of firings along with other agency heads, Kelly has reportedly decided to wait for an inspector general report to become public on Pruitt’s expensive travel habits, which have drawn significant criticism in recent months. This news comes after the latest Pruitt controversy last week revealed that the EPA administrator rented out $50/night DC lodging in a house for much of 2017 that is co-owned by the wife of a top energy lobbyist. (Politico)
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