CP Daily: Monday November 25, 2019

Published 00:53 on November 26, 2019  /  Last updated at 00:57 on November 26, 2019  / Ben Garside /  Newsletters

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

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ANALYSIS: Playing catch-up, EU neighbours inch towards ETS-aligned carbon pricing

The EU’s southeastern neighbours have agreed to study imposing carbon taxes on their power sector to move towards EU ETS prices as a path to market linkage, though a poor clean energy record and stalled integration efforts cast doubt on the process.


World on track to put record 3% dent in coal consumption -report

Global electricity production from coal is on track for a record drop of 3% year-on-year in 2019 amid lower electricity demand and a rapid increase in renewables and nuclear power, a report said Monday, with even numbers in China falling.


ANALYSIS: California offset investigation could spur higher premium for ‘golden’ credits

Prices for California offset credits financially backed against invalidation could rise as a result of state regulator ARB’s probe into a Michigan-based livestock project, developers and market participants said.

US EPA not expected to finalise RFS supplementary proposal till this winter -report

The US EPA will likely not finalise its plan to introduce a supplementary proposal to next year’s biofuel quotas under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) until after the programme’s Nov. 30 deadline, as the agency reviews public comments on the strategy released this fall, according to a media report.


EU Market: EUAs retreat after early surge to 2-week high near €25

EUAs hit a two-week high early on Monday, but almost immediately retreated back towards negative territory and kept falling after a weak auction and amid mixed outlooks from experts.

Mitsubishi-led consortium prevails in bid to buy Dutch energy firm Eneco

A Japanese consortium led by Mitsubishi Corp has agreed to buy Dutch energy company Eneco for €4.1 billion, beating rival offers from oil major Shell and private equity firm KKR.


Shades of REDD+ Nesting: A good or bad piece of Swiss cheese?

There was a time when people thought that forests were the low-hanging fruit of the climate challenge, and that reducing emissions from deforestation was fast, easy, and cheap. No one thinks that anymore.


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Atmospheric record – Global CO2 concentrations surged from 405.5 parts per million in 2017 to a new record of 407.8 ppm in 2018, exceeding the average annual increase of 2.06 ppm in 2005-2015 to reinforce increasingly damaging weather patterns, the WMO said on Monday in a study measuring the atmospheric concentration of warming gases, rather than emissions. (Reuters)

Slow flow – New investment in wind, solar, and other clean energy projects in developing nations dropped sharply from $169 billion in 2017 to $133 bln in 2018, largely due to a slowdown in China, according to BloombergNEF’s (BNEF) latest Climatescope findings. Chinese investment in new wind, solar, and other non-large hydro renewables projects in the country fell to $86 bln in 2018 from $122 bln in 2017. The majority of new power-generating capacity added in developing nations in 2018 came from wind and solar. However, the volume of actual coal-fired power generated and consumed in developing countries jumped to 6,900 TWh in 2018, up from 6,400 in 2017.

Dutch drive – The EU needs to tighten its 2030 emission reduction target next year and impose a stricter cap in the EU ETS, according to the Netherlands. Plans by incoming European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen to achieve net zero emissions by 2050 triggered the Dutch assessment published Monday. The first step must be an agreement by EU heads of government to endorse that goal at their summit in December, according to the document. Countries should then agree to boost the EU ambition for 2030, deepening the current goal of cutting GHGs by at least 40% under 1990 levels. “The Netherlands wants the 2030 target to be increased to 55%, to be agreed on in 2020,” it said, adding that the toughening should be translated into rules governing areas such as the EU ETS, forestry, biofuels, vehicle emissions, and energy efficiency for appliances. The Netherlands also renewed its call for a carbon floor price. (Bloomberg)

Miner coal cuts – Czech lignite miner Sokolovska Uhelna will cut 1,000 jobs over the next two years as the rising price of EU carbon permits makes coal mining drastically less attractive, CTK news agency reported on Friday. Sokolovska is the smallest among the three lignite producers in Czechia, producing 6.8 Mt in 2018, some of which it supplies to its own power plants. The country’s main electricity producer CEZ plans to cut its installed capacity in coal-fired power plants to 3.2 GW by 2030 from 6.2 GW last year, when coal-fired plants delivered 44% of CEZ’s power output. (Reuters)

Coast to coast – British Columbia, which has a reputation as the most environmentally friendly Canadian province, is in fact one of the nation’s biggest supporters of the fossil fuel industry, according to an NGO report released Monday. The study from the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) found that the BC government provided C$830 mln to fossil fuels in 2017-18, while new subsidies continue to be created, including support for the province’s LNG industry. On the opposite coast, Halifax-based Ecology Action Centre released a separate report detailing how Nova Scotia could realise 90% renewable energy and a complete phaseout of coal power by 2030. The proposed pathway would lead to significant overall GHG reductions in Nova Scotia – more than 69% below 2005 levels by 2030 or a provincial total of about 7.3 Mt.

ISO-lated – The head of transmission organisation ISO New England has pressed for a carbon price to speed the region’s clean energy transition. In a Nov. 21 response to a letter from eight US senators, ISO New England President and CEO Gordon van Welie acknowledged the grid operator’s Competitive Auctions with Sponsored Policy Resource was slowing renewables integration. However, while van Welie said placing a price on carbon would be a “simple and easily-implemented mechanism” to speed renewables onto the grid, he added the New England states have made clear “they are not in favour of pricing carbon emissions within the ISO-administered, FERC-regulated wholesale electricity markets.” (Utility Dive)

Wonk corner – Is Article 6 on the home stretch? In the new issue of the Carbon Mechanisms Review, they look at success factors for the negotiations, and analyse what is needed to make the Article 6 rulebook text ready for enabling up-scaled mitigation action. With regard to the ‘Latin American COP’ (taking place in Madrid), they cover the emerging carbon pricing landscape in the region, while their cover feature reports on and analyses the current Article 6 pilot initiatives. An analysis of the latest CORSIA developments rounds off the issue.

And finally… Delay of game – Hundreds of activists stormed the Yale University football field Saturday to protest climate change by disrupting the annual Yale-Harvard football game. Protesters from both schools delayed progress on the historic annual game for nearly an hour after they swarmed the field at half-time, linking arms to sit on the 50-yard line as they called for Harvard and Yale to divest from fossil fuels and forgive Puerto Rican debt. More than 40 protesters were arrested and charged with disorderly conduct, including actor and Yale graduate Sam Waterston, who was also arrested last month at a climate protest in DC. Organisers say dozens of unaffiliated students joined the protest after it began, with more than 500 protesters on the field at its peak. (Climate Nexus)

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