California carbon prices edge higher despite state climate bills faltering

Published 02:54 on September 12, 2015  /  Last updated at 09:55 on September 16, 2015  /  Americas, US  /  No Comments

California carbon prices were up slightly across the forward curve in light trade this week even as state legislators unexpectedly rejected bills that would have forced drastic reductions in the state’s carbon emissions by 2020.

California carbon prices were up slightly across the forward curve in light trade this week even as state legislators unexpectedly rejected bills that would have forced drastic reductions in the state’s carbon emissions by 2020.

Front-year CCA contracts on ICE added 4 cents week-on-week, with the Dec-15 deliveries settling at $12.75 on Thursday. The weekly volume of nearly 1.6 million tonnes represented just a fraction of what changed hands during unusually heavy trading last week.

Prices for Vintage 2018 gained in similar measure to settle at $12.69.

Vintage 2014 saw an uptick in early-week trading which nudged Oct-15 deliveries one cent higher to $12.68 on a volume of 475,000 tonnes. California compliance entities will be required to surrender all their 2014 emission credits ahead of a November deadline.

A state Senate bill – SB 32 – that would have reduced California’s emissions to 80% below 1990 levels by 2050 and to 40% below by 2030 stalled in the state’s Assembly this week and will not be reconsidered for a vote until the next legislative session in 2016.

Also this week, a companion Senate bill – SB 350 – was gutted of provisions to reduce the state’s petroleum use 50% by 2030 in the face of an intense lobbying effort by the oil industry. Portions of that bill related to increasing the state’s renewable energy standard and improving building efficiency were still working their way through the legislature late Friday.

California’s Air Resources Board this week issued 828,792 offsets to six projects, of which 157,613 were awarded to early action projects. About 23.75 million offsets have been awarded since the start of the programme. The early action pipeline currently stands at nearly 10 million potential credits.

A recently-adopted rice cultivation carbon offset protocol is one step closer to implementation after the California Air Resources Board (ARB) this week submitted the rule to the state’s office of administrative law for review and approval.

The protocol will become eligible for use by developers once it is approved by California’s secretary of state and published in the state code of regulations. ARB has requested an early effective date of Nov. 1.

By Robert Mullin – news@carbon-pulse.com

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