CP Daily: Friday May 18, 2018

Published 00:00 on May 19, 2018  /  Last updated at 00:59 on May 19, 2018  /  Newsletter  /  No Comments

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

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TOP STORY

Australia hits 50m offset mark, though future remains uncertain

Australia’s Clean Energy Regulator this week issued 244,000 carbon credits, taking the total number issued since the programme started in Dec. 2012 past 50 million, although the majority of the units have been snapped up by the government itself.

EMEA

Netherlands underpins CO2 floor plans by setting end dates for coal plants

The Netherlands said it will shut two of its coal power plants in 2024 and the other three before 2030 unless they switch fuels, adding further pressure to big-emitting generators ahead of the implementation of a planned domestic carbon floor price for power from 2020.

EU court rules chemicals firm Evonik not entitled to more free CO2 allowances

The EU’s highest court has ruled that chemicals firm Evonik is not entitled to additional free carbon allowances because its method of producing gases does not fall within a defined benchmark.

EU Market: EUAs hold above €15 to lodge 4% weekly gain

EU carbon recovered from a mid-afternoon sell-off on Friday, with prices ending slightly lower in choppy trade after a bullish auction to hold above €15 for a 4.2% weekly rise.

EU ETS emissions rose 0.3% in 2017, European Commission estimates

Emissions covered under the EU ETS rose by 0.3% in 2017, the European Commission said Friday, confirming the small increase both reported in preliminary data released last month and predicted by analysts.

AMERICAS

California considers greater CO2 sequestration goal for rural sector

Several Californian agencies are discussing raising the emission reduction target for natural and working lands (NWLs) in the state in order to meet overall 2030 GHG targets, they said at a workshop on Friday.

New York committee defeats senator’s carbon tax proposal

The Senate version of a bill that would implement a carbon tax and rebate programme in New York state was defeated in a legislative committee this week, the second such carbon pricing initiative to fall on the US east coast this week.

DATA

CN Markets: Pilot market data for week ending May. 18, 2018

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.

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CARBON FORWARD 2018

SAVE THE DATE: Carbon Forward 2018 – Survive and thrive in the global carbon markets

Don’t miss the 3rd annual Carbon Forward conference and training day – Oct. 16-18, 2018 in London.

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.

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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD

Comments please – The Alberta Climate Change Office has posted the Draft Technical Guidance for Offset Protocol Development and Revision for a 30-day public comment period. The document provides guidance to stakeholders wishing to develop new offset protocols in the province or to revise existing ones under Alberta’s new Carbon Competitiveness Incentive Regulation (CCIR). Written comments can be provided until June 18.

Be clearer – Sixty major investors overseeing almost $10.5 trillion in assets, have called for the oil and gas industry to be “more transparent and take responsibility for all of its emissions”. Aberdeen Standard Investments, Axa Investment Managers, and 58 other big investors have demanded oil and gas companies intensify their efforts on climate change. (Financial Times)

Getting everyone involved – The commission tasked with managing Germany’s coal power phase-out has softened its stance on reducing emissions, Handelsblatt Online reports. An earlier version of the strategy paper said Germany must reduce coal emissions by 60% compared to 1990 by 2030 in order to abide by its Climate Action Plan. The latest version says “the entire energy industry” must achieve a 60% reduction rather than coal power alone. (Clean Energy Wire)

On the chopping block – President Trump signed an executive order late Thursday that prioritises efforts to improve government efficiencies by carrying out cost-cutting actions. Part of this includes scrapping a previous executive order signed by President Obama in 2015 that called on the federal government to reduce its GHG emissions by 40% below 2008 levels over the next 10 years. The Trump order does not include any language regarding climate change or emissions cuts, but merely calls on government agencies to track and report their GHGs. (Politico)

Come together – A collection of utilities and other groups including Tesla have filed a lawsuit against the EPA’s proposed rollbacks of the national fuel economy standards floated by the agency last month. The group, known as the National Coalition for Advanced Transportation, counts 16 members in total – seven of which are either Exelon or its subsidiaries – argues that freezing the current standards would dry up technological innovation and put the US at a competitive disadvantage internationally. Utilities have begun to support this cause as higher fuel economy standards would drive up demand for electric vehicles, while electricity demand in buildings has also stagnated. (Axios)

What’s the point? – The Climate Solutions Caucus welcomed five new members to its ranks on Thursday: Reps. Erik Philip Paulsen, Tom MacArthur, Eliot Engel, Peter Roskam, and Ron Kind. The additions bring the bipartisan caucus’ total to 78 members, though the purpose of the group remains unclear.

And finally… Spaced out no more? – Former Oklahoma representative and newly-appointed NASA administrator Jim Brindenstine appeared to indicate on Thursday that he accepts mainstream climate science, a progression from his past views on the subject. Responding to a question at a NASA town hall, Brindenstine said “I fully believe and know that the climate is changing,” and that “I also know that we humans beings are contributing to it in a major way”. This not only marks a shift from waffling on the question during his confirmation hearing last November, but also might make him one of the only Trump appointees to endorse the widely-accepted scientific consensus on climate change. (Climate Nexus)

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