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The EU should prepare for a coal power phaseout by 2030 as market forces make the facilities increasingly unprofitable without subsidies, with just a fifth making any money today, a report said on Thursday.
California Carbon Allowance (CCA) prices declined significantly this week on the heels of a US Department of Justice lawsuit challenging the state’s carbon market linkage with Quebec, while RGGI Allowance (RGA) prices slid on small volume.
The Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment (CCME) on Wednesday released a framework for jurisdictions to develop offset programmes across the country, with an aim of establishing long-term harmonisation and credit transferability.
Nova Scotia Environment Minister Gordon Wilson introduced legislation on Wednesday to craft more ambitious GHG reduction targets for 2030 and 2050, along with planning a new climate change strategy for the Canadian province by the end of next year.
EUAs climbed back above €25 on Thursday as the energy complex reversed early losses from news of France’s all-clear of its nuclear facilities, though the market remained shackled by Brexit uncertainty.
Finnish utility Fortum reported zero emissions from its ETS-covered facilities over Q3 on Thursday, as its remaining backup thermal units were not called upon.
The landfill gas arm of energy firm EDL has made good on nearly 460,000 carbon credits under government contract, while Australia’s Clean Energy Regulator this week issued a modest 150,000 new offsets.
The New Zealand government has backed down on plans to bring agriculture into its emissions trading scheme, agreeing instead to work with the sector to develop a separate carbon pricing mechanism for farmers by 2025.
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
India slowdown – Growth in India’s CO2 emissions slowed sharply in the first eight months of 2019 amid a slowdown in coal power expansions, putting the world’s number three emitter on track for its lowest annual increase in nearly 20 years. With renewable output surging and demand growth slowing, emissions have risen just 2%, against an average of 5% per year over the past decade. (Carbon Brief)
Power uncut – The UK has said it will reinstate its power capacity market after Brussels approved it, a move set to release around £1 bln of suspended payments, most of which will be paid in Jan. 2020. Additionally, three auctions scheduled for early next year to secure power capacity out to 2023/24 will take place. (Reuters)
Mine rethink – A Bucharest court blocked the expansion of the largest coal mine in Romania, energy firm CE Oltenia’s Rosia de Amaradia, following a legal challenge to the mine’s environmental permit lodged by NGO Bankwatch Romania. (Romania Insider)
As sue as possible – A Massachusetts judge on Thursday gave the state’s attorney general the green light to sue ExxonMobil “ASAP” over allegations it concealed from investors and consumers its knowledge of the role fossil fuels play in climate change. While Exxon lawyers had attempted to delay the filing until a similar case is heard in New York, Suffolk County Superior Court Judge Heidi Brieger said that once Massachusetts gave the oil major an opportunity to discuss the case at least five days before suing the company, it could then proceed. (Reuters)
As sue as possible, part 2 – Ontario Premier Doug Ford will press ahead with its appeal of a provincial court upholding Ottawa’s ‘backstop’ carbon pricing plan, despite pro-carbon parties having won roughly two-thirds of the vote in Canada’s federal election this week. In August, Ford said he would consult with the Ontario attorney general and cabinet after the national election to determine the way forward, suggesting voters would be the ones to determine the fate of the challenge. However, Ford told local outlet CP24 on Thursday that his Progressive Conservative government “will see it through” when asked of the case. (CBC)
Come together – US Democratic Senator Chris Coons and his Republican colleague Mike Braun are launching the Senate Climate Solutions Caucus to foster bipartisan cooperation on climate change. Coons said that some areas of potential cooperation included improving energy efficiency and investing in research and development to supporting energy security and workforce development. (Axios)
Grass pass – Offset registry Climate Action Reserve’s (CAR) Board of Directors last week approved the organisation’s avoided grasslands conversion protocol for Canada, CAR said in a newsletter. Although the methodology is currently voluntary, registry officials have expressed hope that either the Canadian federal government or provinces could adopt it for use in a number of emerging compliance markets. Additionally, the board adopted an update to CAR’s forestry protocol.
Assumption expectation – US grid operator PJM will plan to release its assumptions for projected electricity generation, transmission, and demand in December to assess the impact of a possible CO2 charge in the 14-jurisdiction region, officials said during a meeting Thursday. Those assumptions will inform modelling results, slated for release some time next year, for a variety of carbon pricing approaches that its member states may take. PJM’s next Carbon Pricing Senior Task Force meeting is set for Nov. 15.
And finally… Calling the cops – Australia’s Energy and Emission Reductions Minister Angus Taylor has been involved in a number of controversies recently, but he could now be reported to the police by the opposition Labor party, according to the Guardian. Taylor’s office last month claimed Clover Moore, the lord mayor of Sydney, had contributed to rising GHG emissions by spending a whooping A$15 million ($10.2 mln) on travel last year, and subsequently provided the Daily Telegraph newspaper with documents containing those numbers. However, those documents have since been proven to be doctored, as all of Sydney’s councillors only spent a total A$229,000 on travel over the year. The Labor party on Thursday said it would report Taylor to the New South Wales police within 24 hours if Prime Minister Scott Morrison doesn’t do it first, citing NSW state laws that “the making of a forged document that is intended to influence the exercise of a public duty by a publicly elected official like the lord mayor of Sydney is an indictable offence punishable by up to 10 years imprisonment”.
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