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The European Commission unveiled its wide-ranging ‘European Green Deal’ on Wednesday, including a legislative proposal to enshrine a 2050 net zero emissions target into law by Mar. 2020 but snubbing lawmaker calls to immediately propose a deeper 2030 goal.
An ICAO technical advisory panel is slated to make recommendations in January over which of the initial 14 global offset programme applications should be eligible to supply the UN aviation body’s CORSIA market starting in 2021, with sources suggesting that any ultimate decisions by member states may not be clear cut.
The nearly 200 parties to the Paris Agreement on Wednesday dove headfirst into forging an agreement on the market-based Article 6 of the Paris Agreement, while dozens of attendees from environmental and indigenous groups were kicked out by UN security for protesting the slow pace of the talks.
South Korea’s monthly KAU auction cleared at a record-high 40,900 won ($34.24) on Wednesday with secondary market prices also hitting all-time highs as strong demand and limited supply continue to push up prices.
Indonesia has announced plans to launch a pilot carbon market next year, with a full-fledged emissions trading scheme to follow no later than 2024. A lot of specifics remain to be decided, but here are the details of the plans so far.
The Canadian federal government on Wednesday gave the green light for New Brunswick’s proposed carbon tax on fossil fuels beginning in April, a move that will allow the province to avoid coverage under Ottawa’s ‘backstop’ CO2 levy.
California regulator ARB granted nearly 2.4 million new California Carbon Offsets (CCOs) across two protocols this week, with the vast majority stemming from a large forestry project, according to data released Wednesday.
European carbon prices fell on Wednesday, as sellers aggressively sold the futures late in the day and ahead of today’s options expiry on ICE.
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
Swing to negative – UK utility Drax has become the first company in the world to set out plans to absorb more CO2 from the air than it creates by 2030. In recent years Drax has converted its huge coal generation units to run on wood pellets on subsidies of about £2 million a day. The next phase of its climate action plan will require further government support to develop technology that can capture millions of tonnes of carbon emissions from the plant before permanently storing the gas in underground caverns. (The Guardian)
Shifting support – US oil lobby American Petroleum Institute is now supporting the ambitions of the Paris Agreement and, separately, CCS technology. Yet, it doesn’t say that it supports the Paris deal itself, but the ambitions of it. That’s a subtle distinction made likely to distance itself from the extreme reductions in fossil-fuel emissions the deal implicitly calls for When it comes to a carbon price, an API official says it only comments on specific legislation. (Axios)
Proposed edits – Virginia Governor Ralph Northam (D) proposed a state budget on Wednesday that would removed GOP-backed amendments this spring that restrict the state from participating the Northeast RGGI ETS and proposed Transportation Climate Initiative (TCI) cap-and-invest programme. Northam also said he would propose legislation to make Virginia the 11th member of the RGGI cap-and-trade programme, though his proposal would still require approval by the legislature before it can be enacted, meaning the GOP-backed budget amendments remain in effect until then. However, Democrats won a majority in the state legislature in November, leading some experts to believe those restrictions would be removed in 2020. Democrats have already filed a bill ahead of the 2020 legislative session that would allow the state to join RGGI by 2021, and traders have viewed Virginia’s potential entrance into the programme as a bullish driver for allowance prices.
Fixed on Apr. 6 – Offset standard developer and manager Verra will delay the planned roll-out of its in-house registry to Apr. 6, having previously scheduled the launch for mid-January. Verra planned its transition from a multi-registry system administered by APX and IHS Markit to the single system, but the company said in an emailed update on Wednesday that the new date would ensure there is sufficient time to complete the necessary work.
And finally… Right on Time – Teenage Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg was named as Time Magazine’s Person of the Year for 2019 on Wednesday, the youngest person ever to achieve the title. Thunberg quickly bloomed into one of the world’s most notable and youngest climate change activists, sparking a collective movement to fight climate change after protesting alone outside the Swedish parliament during school hours on Fridays when she was 15. The now 16-year-old sailed for just over two weeks on a zero-emission boat with her father in August to attend the UN Climate Action Summit in New York City and to meet with various politicians, before sailing back to COP25 in Madrid this month. (NBC News)
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