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Germany’s ministerial cabinet on Wednesday approved the government’s new €54 billion climate plan after making a few tweaks, sending the proposals to tackle non-EU ETS emissions for passage by parliament and state lawmakers.
Traders view Pennsylvania’s recent announcement that it will develop a RGGI-modelled ETS regulation as a positive step for the Northeast US programme, but several potential obstacles towards realising the policy may blunt any near-term secondary market impacts.
A US federal judge threw out California utility Pacific Gas & Electric’s bankruptcy exclusivity claims on Wednesday and will allow bondholders and wildfire victims to submit a competing reorganisation plan.
California regulator ARB granted more than 349,000 new offsets (CCOs) across two protocols this week, while it reduced the invalidation period on 3.3 mln existing credits, according to data released Wednesday.
California stands a long way off from meeting its ambitious 2030 emission reduction targets at the current pace of decarbonisation, as increased wildfires further jeopardise the state’s climate progress, a new report has found.
Indonesia has established a new agency to channel funding for increased climate action, including any trading of carbon credits with developed nations or potential domestic emissions trading programmes.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Wednesday reiterated the need to reduce carbon emissions from agriculture and the opportunities such action might bring, speaking amid a domestic row that is delaying plans for how to bring the sector into the NZ emissions trading scheme.
Oil and gas company Woodside Energy has teamed up with environmental firm Greening Australia to carry out a large-scale tree planting project that is expected to generate 1 million offsets over the next 25 years.
Failure to agree on rules for Article 6 at this year’s UN climate talks in Chile could see countries like Australia and New Zealand forging their own bilateral links to get access to the international credits they need to fulfil their Paris Agreement pledges, market experts warned Wednesday.
EUAs fell towards €22 early on Wednesday to further extend their six-month low, but clawed back into positive territory after a strong auction and signs that a Brexit deal may still be in the works.
Brussels’ incoming climate boss said he would be “extremely surprised” if the EU doesn’t move towards raising its 2030 emissions reduction target to at least 55% below 1990 levels, though such a proposal will not come within the new Commission’s first 100 days in office.
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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
British offsetter – British Airways is to offset carbon emissions for all UK domestic flights from next year as part of a wider commitment by its parent company to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, The Times reports. Emissions from domestic BA flights will be offset by International Airlines Group investing in carbon reduction projects, including renewable energy and reforestation programmes. BA operates up to 75 UK domestic flights a day. The move follows a similar initiative announced by Air France last week.
Shape up – Bank of England governor Mark Carney has warned major corporations they have two years to agree on rules for reporting climate risks before global regulators impose their own standards based on guidance from the Task Force on Climate Disclosures (TCFD). Carney said the TCFD needs to reach a definitive view of what counts as a high quality disclosure before they become mandatory. (The Guardian)
Bad boys league table – The world’s 20 biggest-emitting companies have emitted a total 480 billion tonnes of CO2e since 1965, accounting for 35% of all global energy-related emissions over that period, according to the Guardian. The data, based on a study done by the Climate Accountability Institute, shows that Saudi Aramco has been the world’s biggest emitter over the past 50+ years, releasing over 59 billion tonnes of CO2e into the atmosphere. Next on the list are Chevron, Gazprom, ExxonMobil, National Iranian Coal, and BP. As many as 12 companies on the top 20 list are state-owned and based in Saudi Arabia, Russia, Iran, India, Mexico, Venezuela, China, UAE, Kuwait, Iraq, and Brazil. The biggest investor-owned emitters are American and British.
Who are we? – Australia’s Labor party is still in a state of intense introspection after losing the May federal election against all odds. Frontbencher and natural resources spokesman Joel Fitzgibbon on Wednesday said in a speech in Sydney that the party could no longer continue to afford losing elections over its ambitious climate policy, and said the Labor party should scale back its 2030 emissions reduction target to the ruling Coalition’s 26-28% below 2005 levels, from its current goal of 45%. However, climate spokesman Mark Butler condemned Fitzgibbon’s comments, insisting instead that Labor would maintain targets that are in line with climate science and the Paris Agreement. (Guardian)
Sweet 16 – Attorneys for 16 young Alaskans who sued over climate change policy argued their case before the US state’s highest court on Wednesday. The lawsuit says state policy that promotes fossil fuels violates the constitutional right of young Alaskans to a safe climate, and lists the damages of continued inaction including rising temperatures, changing rain and snow patterns, and rising sea levels. An Alaska Superior Court judge ruled against the youths a year ago, saying that courts lacked the scientific, economic, and technological resources that agencies can use to determine climate policy, and that it should be left in their hands. (AP)
Leading Liz – New front-running US Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren on Wednesday unveiled her environmental justice plan. One portion would create an equity screen for big federal investments for accelerating the transformation to low-carbon energy, with at least $1 trillion going to vulnerable communities over 10 years. Other pillars include altering bankruptcy laws to prevent coal and other fossil fuel companies to avoid cleaning up pollution, encouraging the EPA and Department of Justice to go after corporate polluters, and ensuring a just transition for workers. The Massachusetts senator recently took the national polling lead for the first time from former Vice President Joe Biden in the closely watched RealClearPolitics average of 2020 White House polls. (Axios)
And finally… Despite all our rage we are still just a rat in a cage – Online rage is stopping society from coming together and cooperating on solving the climate crisis, according to the author of a controversial recent article. In his September New Yorker article, Jonathan Franzen shared his belief that a climate apocalypse is unavoidable and so it is “important to fight smaller, more local battles that you have some realistic hope of winning”. Among his vehement online critics were scientists, who particularly objected to his statement that “consensus among scientists and policymakers is that we’ll pass this point of no return if the global mean temperature rises by more than 2 degrees Celsius”. Speaking to the climate activist Extinction Rebellion podcast, the American novelist said that “in the context of a threatened social order, the kind of polarisation and hysteria and real hate speech that is occurring primarily on the internet, much less often face-to-face, is part of the problem”. However, he admitted that his claim about warming could have been expressed more clearly, and noted he supports Extinction Rebellion’s worldwide protests. (The Guardian)
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