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Officials from nearly 200 government arrive at COP25 in Madrid next week to hammer out the rules for international emissions trade under the Paris Agreement, with several testing issues remaining from last year when disagreements nearly threw off a wider deal on the 2015 pact.
The incoming European Commission will only look to publish plans next October to deepen the bloc’s 2030 GHG target underpinning its ETS, according to a document leaked to media that suggests officials have not been swayed by lawmaker pressure to fast-track the plans.
Lawmakers in the upper house of Germany’s parliament on Friday approved the bulk of the government’s €54 billion climate package, but blocked sections of it relating to costs.
A British oil and gas firm has lost its appeal over its €4 million EU ETS bill, with a London court rejecting the idea that UK emitters should be able to ‘net off’ allowances unallocated due to Brexit with their surrender obligations.
EUAs on Friday lifted above the €25 handle that has drawn the market’s focus this week, with prices notching a 2.6% weekly gain despite some mounting bearish fundamental signals.
Lawmakers in Luxembourg on Friday unveiled a draft law to raise the landlocked microstate’s climate ambition.
Demand from emitters in Germany’s weekly auctions fell back in October after three above-average months, a government report shows.
Japan’s greenhouse gas emissions fell 3.6% last year, preliminary environment ministry data showed Friday, meaning the country is almost hallway through to meeting its 2030 obligations under the Paris Agreement.
Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions fell 0.1% in FY2018-19, government data showed Friday, primarily due to a drop in agricultural output amid the ongoing drought.
China’s Hubei province on Friday sold all 3.51 million CO2 allowances on offer as emitters and investors alike swept in to pick up permits at price levels not seen in the secondary market since July last year, while a Shanghai sale restricted to compliance buyers attracted interest in just a fraction of its permits.
Closing prices, ranges and volumes for China’s regional pilot carbon markets this week.
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Team America – President Donald Trump may be withdrawing from the Paris Agreement, but the US is still going to be a force at the negotiating table when delegates gather at COP25 in Madrid next week to thrash out trading rules under Article 6. Despite Trump’s rejection of the pact, US officials have long advocated emissions trading on the world stage and the government wants a say in the structure of those markets, Bloomberg reports. The transparency and accountability of such markets is a top priority for the US government and businesses such as airlines and oil companies that may have to offset their own emissions. The US is dispatching a small team of career diplomats and officials to the climate talks, largely mirroring the delegation that attended last year’s summit in Poland. They will also be joined by representatives of some businesses and state and local governments. But unlike the past two years, where the Trump administration played a contrarian role and held discussions to promote clean coal, the US is not planning a similar side event in Madrid. And, in another shift, political appointees from the Trump administration also won’t be attending, according to two people familiar with the matter who asked not to be named before a formal announcement.
Free trade trouble – Australia and the EU are in talks over a free trade agreement, but an initiative by France to include in the deal a clause that Australia would have to set and live up to certain climate change-related targets has irked Canberra. Trade Minister Simon Birmingham describes the move as “unprecedented” and says he will refuse to sign any other terms than those in Australia’s best interest, reports the Sydney Morning Herald.
Stress tests – France’s financial regulator will subject banks and insurers to climate change stress tests next year, central bank governor Francois Villeroy de Galhau said. The move will add to the climate curbs placed on the country’s financial sector that has been required by law to disclose climate risks since 2016. He said financial institutions would be stress tested against two or three climate change scenarios and that the results would be made public afterwards. (Reuters)
Greek tragedy – Greece’s biggest power utility Public Power Corp. (PPC) on Friday posted a 73% drop in nine-month core profit, hurt by lower costs for carbon emission rights and the sale of power at below-cost prices, Reuters reports. PPC, which is 51% state owned, said earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation came in at €96.9 mln in the nine months to September, down from €359 mln in the same period last year.
Flying free – European plane manufacturer Airbus could potentially build an emission-free, 100-seat regional aircraft by the early 2030s. It is working on multiple methods to reduce CO2 emissions. While smaller regional planes could fly emission-free by the early 2030s, larger long-range jets would need to adopt multiple technologies. (Bloomberg)
And finally… Going, going, gone – Australian politicians have a tendency to hit the limelight over various stunts they pull – some well-timed, some not. MP Barnaby Joyce, the former leader of the National party – the smaller party in the ruling government Coalition – has become the latest as it emerged Friday that he recently auctioned off a lump of coal at the party’s federal conference in Canberra in September. The auction also included a “Start Adani” t-shirt, backing one of Australia’s biggest coal mines, reports RenewEconomy. The lump of coal sold for A$800 ($542), and the money was donated to the party’s youth organisation. The stunt is reminiscent of Prime Minister Scott Morrison, who when he was Treasurer brought a lump of coal to parliament, telling the opposition Labor and Green parties that it wasn’t dangerous and there was no need to be afraid. Joyce himself earned a brief moment of international infamy a few years back, when he threatened to put down Johnny Depp’s dogs after the Hollywood star brought them on a visit to Australia but didn’t clear them through customs.
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