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Mexico plans to implement a three-year cap-and-trade pilot programme beginning in 2020 that would utilise direct allocation and auctions to distribute allowances to end users, but it has not yet determined the appropriate caps, according to a public consultation released on Monday.
Spain’s acting socialist government has called on the EU to assess a potential carbon tax on power imports under its upcoming central budget from 2021, according to media reports on Monday.
EU Parliament election results released early Monday suggest the assembly will retain its stance of pushing for more ambitious climate policy, though its centrist parties will need to rely more on liberal and green lawmakers to stave off populist climate-sceptic members.
EU carbon dipped on Tuesday as observers warned that the rising risk of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit could weigh on prices, though signs mounted that a technical breakout could be imminent.
German emitters ramped up their buying of EU Allowances in April, according to a government report released last Tuesday.
A Connecticut legislative review committee has rejected regulations to implement the post-2020 RGGI Model Rule due to numerous errors in the proposed draft, according to a report released Tuesday.
Nodal Exchange and IncubEx will launch their second offering of environmental trading products on Friday, with this round focusing on a suite of new exchange-listed renewable energy certificates (RECs) for certain US states and jurisdictions.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Sunday announced his new Cabinet after a shuffle that saw the responsibility for carbon emissions returned to the energy portfolio.
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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Merkel miffed – As German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s climate cabinet is set to meet for the second time on Wednesday, her conservative CDU/CSU alliance has criticised Social Democratic (SPD) environment minister Svenja Schulze for sending the draft of her controversial Climate Action Law to other ministers for coordination without the chancellery’s consent. The bill aims to aims to enshrine existing CO2 reduction targets for each economic sector into law and to hold the individual ministries financially responsible. By starting the inter-ministerial consultation, which precedes a cabinet decision, Schulze increases pressure on the conservative CDU/CSU union. The inter-ministerial cabinet is expected to deliver first sets of proposals for climate action measures in individual economic sectors to underpin meeting a 2030 emission reduction goal of 55% under 1990 levels. (Clean Energy Wire)
Humber humming – Utility Drax, energy firm Equinor, and a unit of the UK’s transmission operator National Grid have teamed up to explore making the Humber region the world’s first carbon negative and hydrogen cluster over the next decade by scaling up Drax’s pilot bioenergy carbon capture and storage (BECCS) pilot project. (BusinessGreen)
Atomic clinch – Steep declines in nuclear energy capacity will threaten climate goals and power supply security unless advanced economies find a way to extend the lifespan of their reactors, according to think-tank IEA. Without policy changes, advanced economies could lose 25% of their nuclear capacity by 2025 and as much as two-thirds of it by 2040, the IEA writes in its first major report about nuclear energy in two decades. (Reuters)
Lobby losses – Political lobbying in the US that helped block the progress of proposed Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade regulation a decade ago led to a social cost of $60 billion from factors such as reduced farming yields to lower GDP, according to a new study published in Nature Climate Change by environmental economists Kyle Meng and Ashwin Rode. (Carbon Brief)
Greening Tauron – Poland’s state-run utility Tauron plans to replace most of its coal-burning power plants with renewable sources of energy in the coming decade to adjust to EU climate policies and secure future financing. By 2030, Tauron wants green energy sources to account for 65% of its power generation, it said in a strategy update. (Reuters)
Gas tracking – Europe is readying a new fleet of satellites that from 2025 will monitor CO2 emissions at every point on earth, creating the first worldwide system to independently track polluters and in time to inform the UN’s global stocktake three years later, according to the European Space Agency. It will cost an estimated €633 million, with funding dependent on the EU’s yet-to-be-agreed 2021-2027 budget. (Climate Home)
Mailing it in – The Trump Administration plans to only use computer-generated climate models to determine the impact of climate change through 2040, potentially minimising the long-term effects of global warming, according to a New York Times story. By limiting the modelling through 2040, scientists said it would create a misleading picture on climate change as the biggest effects will be felt after 2040. That would mean worst-case scenarios may not be included in further government reports. (New York Times)
Beefed-up budget – Some details of New Zealand’s national budget, which is due to be released on Thursday, were leaked Tuesday, including numbers showing that the budget for the emissions trading scheme would receive an extra NZ$25 mln ($16.4 mln) next financial year, almost doubling it to NZ$54 mln. There was no information available on how that extra money would be spent, and government officials said some of the leaked information was incorrect. (Stuff)
If you can’t beat us, join us – Australian Energy Minister Angus Taylor commented on Tuesday on new Labor leader Anthony Albanese’s offer to find a bipartisan approach to climate policy, and his message was simple: Labor should agree with the Coalition’s policy. That would include dropping its 45% GHG reduction target in favour of the government’s 26-28% goal. “We took that to the election, we won the election, let’s get on with it,” Taylor told the Guardian.
Take two – The Western Australia EPA will soon launch a public consultation round on guidelines for future GHG emission rules, it announced Tuesday. Draft guidelines released in March proposed that all new major projects should be net carbon neutral, a move that would have pushed the state industry to potentially buy millions of carbon credits. However, that plan outraged industry, and the agency was soon forced to pull the proposal. But according to the Australian Financial Review, many companies expect the upcoming consultation process to end in a similar proposal, especially after the conservative Coalition won the federal election leaving the nation short on policies that reduce carbon emissions.
And finally… Profit in pasties, faith in nuggs – Meat-free protein company Quorn, owned by Filipino food group Monde Nissin, is benefiting from the rise in vegan and flexitarian eating driven by climate change and sustainability concerns. Sales of its vegan sausage roll sold at UK bakery chain Greggs have exceeded initial forecasts by 70%, while the group expects strong sales growth of 45-50% in the US this year by focusing on chicken nugget substitutes. (Financial Times)
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