CP Daily: Monday January 6, 2020

Published 23:00 on January 6, 2020  /  Last updated at 23:00 on January 6, 2020  /  Newsletter  /  No Comments

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

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TOP STORY

SK Market: Prices shed a fifth amid bearish fundamentals, intervention rumours

South Korean carbon prices have dropped nearly 20% over the past two weeks amid rumours of government intervention, with market participants saying the decrease has come against bearish market fundamentals.

EMEA

Equinor to cut its Norwegian carbon emissions 40% by 2030

Norway’s state-owned oil and gas major Equinor will cut greenhouse gas emissions from its Norwegian operations 40% by 2030, 70% by 2040, and reach near-zero emissions by mid-century, it announced Monday.

Spanish power emissions plummet in 2019

Emissions from Spain’s power sector tumbled by a third last year, as higher carbon prices and cheaper gas contributed to significantly cut coal’s share of the national energy mix.

Central European voluntary offset vendor accused of selling retired carbon credits

A Central European voluntary carbon offset vendor has been accused of reselling previously retired credits and of listing some units on its online registry without authorisation.

EU Market: EUAs retreat 3% as oil-led gains peter out, auctions loom

EU carbon slipped back towards €24 on Monday as observers played down the prospects of a war in the Middle East, while analysts expected this week’s resumption of EUA auctions to weigh on prices.

AMERICAS

US airline JetBlue to offset all domestic flight emissions

Low-cost US airline JetBlue announced Monday that it will purchase carbon credits to offset emissions from all its domestic flights beginning in July, while also expanding its sustainable aviation fuel usage.

Massachusetts’ second GWSA auction settles at secondary market levels

Massachusetts’ December auction for its Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA) carbon market settled above the programme’s first sale, but stayed within recent price levels for the in-state power sector ETS, a market source said.

California fuel emissions through September remain on par with 2018, as power continues to dip

California’s on-road diesel and gasoline consumption through Sep. 2019 held only slightly above levels from the previous year, likely resulting in stagnant ETS-covered annual emissions, state data suggested.

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Climate and Energy Correspondent – Brussels

Carbon Pulse is looking for a Climate and Energy Correspondent to help us bolster and expand our coverage of the EU ETS and other energy and environmental markets, as well as climate and energy policy at a national, EU, and international level.

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BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD

Mitigating circumstances – Brussels is waiting on at least two national energy and climate plans (NECPs), with Germany joining Ireland in confirming that it had failed to submit a finalised document ahead of the end-2019 deadline. The German plan is being adjusted to take into account government’s new climate package, according to Clean Energy Wire. The legislation features higher non-ETS carbon pricing and a coal phaseout that includes cancelling ETS allowances. Ireland expects to submit its NECP “very early in 2020” as it strives to include measures in its own recent climate bill, a government spokesman confirmed to Carbon Pulse last month.

Not for your consideration – The Trump administration is planning to revise a 50-year old rule to no longer force agencies to consider climate change when planning major infrastructure projects, news outlets reported last week. Sources say the White House Council on Environmental Quality will announce proposed changes to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) this week that will allow agencies to decline to consider the “cumulative” impacts of projects, including major fossil fuel projects, and shorten the timeframe for environmental reviews. The original rule has proven a stumbling block for the administration’s push to accelerate oil and gas projects. (Climate Nexus)

Study up – A collection of fossil fuel companies announced a joint study with carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) company Svante on Monday to assess the viability and design of a commercial-scale CCS facility at the LafargeHolcim Portland Cement Plant in Colorado. The study, which also features French oil giant Total and Oxy Low Carbon Ventures – a wholly-owned subsidiary of petroleum company Occidental – will evaluate the cost of the facility designed to capture up to 725,000 tonnes of CO2 per year directly from the cement plant, which would be sequestered underground permanently by Occidental. A press release said the CCS facility would employ Svante’s technology to capture carbon directly from industrial sources at half the capital cost of existing solutions.

Nuclear spring – Fukushima is planning to transform itself into a renewable energy hub, almost nine years after it became the scene of one of the world’s worst nuclear accidents. The prefecture in north-east Japan will forever be associated with the triple meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Mar. 2011, but in an ambitious project the local government has vowed to power the region with 100% renewable energy by 2040, compared with 40% today. The 300 bln yen ($2.75 bln) project, whose sponsors include the government-owned Development Bank of Japan and Mizuho Bank, will involve the construction of 11 solar and 10 wind farms on abandoned farmland and in mountainous areas by the end of Mar. 2024, according to the Nikkei Asian Review. (The Guardian)

And finally… Russian roulette – Russia has published a ‘first stage’ climate adaptation plan to 2022 that aims to mitigate damage but also “use the advantages” of warmer temperatures. It lists preventive measures such as dam building or switching to more drought-resistant crops, as well as crisis preparations including emergency vaccinations or evacuations in case of disaster. Possible “positive” effects are decreased energy use in cold regions, expanding agricultural areas, and navigational opportunities in the Arctic Ocean, it added. Among a list of 30 measures, the government will calculate the risks of Russian products becoming uncompetitive and failing to meet new climate-related standards, as well as prepare new educational materials to teach climate change in schools. (The Guardian)

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