CP Daily: Thursday May 23, 2019

Published 22:42 on May 23, 2019  /  Last updated at 22:42 on May 23, 2019  /  Newsletter  /  No Comments

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

**Due to a public holiday in the UK and US, no CP Daily will be published on Monday, May 27**

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TOP STORY

Alberta moves to repeal carbon tax, while large emitter bill not expected till autumn

Alberta’s newly-elected United Conservative Party (UCP) government introduced a bill Wednesday to eliminate the previous administration’s C$30 carbon tax by next week, adding that legislation to overhaul the Canadian province’s large emitter trading programme would not follow until the fall.

ASIA PACIFIC

South Korea delays ETS compliance deadline to resolve banking issue

South Korea has delayed the annual compliance deadline in its emissions trading scheme by two months to allow all market participants to acquire the CO2 allowances they need, with the government opting to allow emitters more time amid a supply squeeze caused by permit hoarding.

Australia’s Labor backs off carbon trading after election defeat

Central Labor party officials on Thursday questioned the wisdom of backing market-based approaches to cutting emissions after last weekend’s election defeat, dimming the prospects for an Australian carbon market beyond government-funded offset buying.

EMEA

EU Market: EUAs sink 1.2% towards €26 as energy complex weakens

EUAs fell on Thursday to give back some of the week’s big gains as oil led the energy complex lower amid China-US trade concerns, while a weaker auction also helped quiet down bulls.

AMERICAS

NA Markets: California prices decline into record-setting auction results, RGGI drags

California Carbon Allowance (CCA) prices receded this week ahead of and immediately after Wednesday’s publication of this month’s record WCI auction results, while RGGI allowances (RGAs) barely budged for a second straight week.

COMMENT

ProPublica’s Inexcusable REDD+ Belly Flop

Mainstream media outlets have been congratulating themselves of late for becoming just 20 years too late on climate change, and now the same institutions that have consistently failed to cover the enormity of the challenge are failing to cover the myriad interlocking solutions. This week, ProPublica became the latest outlet to blow it, writes Steve Zwick of Ecosystem Marketplace.

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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD

Steel solutions – UK business minister Greg Clark has drawn up a rescue plan for British Steel after the firm collapsed into solvency yesterday, the Financial Times reports. Clark wants the government to act as a cornerstone alongside a consortium of private companies, and has commissioned legal advice on whether the plan is permitted under EU state aid rules. (Read Carbon Pulse’s article detailing the potential impact of its closure on the EU ETS)

Legal rebuff – The European General Court has thrown out the NGO-backed “People’s Climate Case” lawsuit from families and an indigenous group from across six different EU countries, Kenya, and Fiji that pressed for stronger 2030 EU climate targets. The court found the plaintiffs, who have pledged to appeal, had not shown they were uniquely impacted by climate change and therefore did not satisfy the criteria for a substantive hearing. (Climate Home)

Rogue findings – Some 40-60% of the increase in emissions since 2012 of globally banned potent home insulation warming gas CFC-11 has been coming from provinces in eastern China. That’s according to researchers using “top-down” measurements from air monitoring stations in South Korea and Japan in a paper published in the journal Nature, and also seem to confirm beyond any reasonable doubt 2018 findings by NGO  Environmental Investivation Agency. China says it has started to clamp down on production with several suspects having been arrested. The ‘rogue’ emissions equate to about 10% of UK GHG emissions. (BBC)

Passing on a plan – Shareholders for multinational tech giant Amazon rejected a proposal to develop a plan to respond to climate change during the company’s annual meeting on Wednesday. The proposal, forged by the employee group Amazon Employees for Climate Justice and attracting nearly 7,700 signatures company-wide, would have required Amazon’s board of directors to prepare a public plan for “disruptions posed by climate change” and how the company will reduce its dependence on fossil fuels. Amazon previously announced it would reach net zero carbon emissions on 50% of its shipments by 2030. (Buzzfeed)

Tell me why – Illinois Senator Tammy Duckworth (D) on Wednesday asked the US EPA’s Office of Inspector General to investigate why the agency vastly expanded its use of waivers to exempt small refiners from the nation’s Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The request notes a May 16 report from Reuters that the Trump administration decided to expand the waiver programme months before a 2017 court decision that it has often cited to justify the small refinery exemptions (SREs) to the corn lobby. “Recent document disclosures reveal that the EPA misled Members of Congress, industry and the public in regard to the agency’s motivations and justifications for its SRE policy,” the letter from Duckworth’s office stated. (Reuters)

And finally… Meat and greet – The market for plant-based or lab-based meat could climb to $140 bln in the next 10 years as emerging companies capture a 10% share of the $1.4 trillion industry, investment bank Barclays said in a report Wednesday. As consumers become more aware of the environmental impacts of the traditional meat industry, alternative meats are likely to gain more acceptance, the analysts note. They added that investors and traditional food companies appear intrigued by the gains made by entities such as Beyond Meat since their initial public offerings, and that alternative meat companies should target the age 14 – 70 male demographic that drives meat consumption. (MarketWatch)

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