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China’s Grand Carbon Trading Experiment Experiences Highs and Lows

Posted on 23 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Beijing and six other jurisdictions launched pilot carbon trading systems within the last 18 months to address the pollution problem that has plagued the country. The city of Qingdao is set to join the mix in 2015 after recently approving plans to start its own carbon market in preparation for the expected implementation of a national market in 2016.
China’s pilot programs combined already constitute the second largest carbon market after the granddaddy of trading schemes – the European Union’s Emissions Trading System (EU ETS), according to a World Bank analysis. However, the anticipated national carbon market in China would regulate 40% of the country’s economy, making it by far the largest in the world, by covering roughly 3-4 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide up to 2020 and worth up to $65 billion if fully implemented………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Nagoya Commodity Exchange(ngcx)to Launch Carbon Credits Contract

Posted on 23 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

In a landmark initiative that will enable direct trading of Carbon Credits Nagoya Commodity Exchange today launched futures trading in Carbon Credits. This pioneering initiative at Nagoya Commodity Exchange makes it among the select few in league.
Commenting on the launch Mr. Genichi Nakatoni Chairman and CEO of NGCX said “Launching of carbon credit futures on the Nagoya Commodity Exchange’s trading platform would provide transparency to markets and help producers earn remunerative returns out of environmentally clean projects.” Trading in new generation commodities like carbon credits has placed Nagoya Commodity Exchange on the global map of innovative exchange for providing global products to its clients………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Big business and trade unions lead calls for bold EU climate change package

Posted on 22 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Big business groups and Europe’s trade unions are united in urging EU leaders to deliver an ambitious new energy and climate change strategy for the post 2020 period, as the CBI and the European Trade Union Confederation both stepped up calls for ambitious new emissions targets for 2030.
The UK’s CBI today became the latest leading business organisation to call for a binding emissions reduction target that would require the EU to cut emissions 40 per cent against 1990 levels by 2030………………………………………..Full Article: Source

EU summit to debate multi-billion carbon quota ‘transfer’ system

Posted on 22 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

European leaders meeting later this week for an EU summit on energy and climate change will discuss proposals allowing energy-rich nations like France and Germany to transfer 10% of CO2 emissions quotas to member states such as Poland, who are struggling to diversify their energy mix.
The EU’s 28 heads of states and government will try to reach agreement on climate and energy policy for 2030 at the EU summit, which takes place in Brussels on Thursday and Friday (23 and 24 October). Leaders will debate the European Commission’s proposed targets for 2030 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, ramp up renewable energy and improve energy efficiency across the continent………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China: Qingdao to launch regional carbon trading scheme in 2015

Posted on 22 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Shandong’s Qingdao city will launch China’s eighth pilot emission trading scheme in 2015, according to the Qingdao Low Carbon Development Plan (2014-2020) released by the Qingdao municipal Development and Reform Commission.
Qingdao will establish the scheme of greenhouse gas (GHG) emission measurement, monitoring and verification in 2015, an official from the commission said. Meanwhile, the regional GHG trading scheme will be in preparation. By 2020, Qingdao is expected to build its low carbon development mechanism and the relevant low carbon policy framework with the regional GHG emission trading scheme launched………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Denmark’s plan to offset transport emissions sparks EU row

Posted on 21 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Green champion’s push to funnel car emissions into the emissions trading system seen as attempt to bend rules. A Danish bid to expand carbon offsetting to the transport sector has triggered uproar among NGOs and academics, with one new analysis saying it would devastate efforts to reign in fuel emissions.
Transport is responsible for a quarter of Europe’s CO2 pollution and, unlike most sectors, its contribution is rising fast – up 36% since 1990. About half of Europe’s transport emissions come from cars and the EU has ordered car-makers to slash their fuel emissions by 2021………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Britain targets 2017 for start of European carbon market reforms

Posted on 21 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Britain wants reforms to Europe’s Emissions Trading System (ETS) to start from 2017, four years earlier than proposed, hoping to tackle the scheme’s massive oversupply and boost investment in clean technologies.
The European Commission has said it wants the so-called market stability reserve (MSR), which will set aside hundreds of millions of surplus carbon allowances from the ETS to help firms cope with economic shocks, to come into force from 2021. Siding with an earlier view from Germany, the British government said on Monday the date should be brought forward………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Eastern Europe attacks planned EU emissions curbs

Posted on 20 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The EU’s plan to slash greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 has come under heavy assault as an increasing number of eastern European nations rally behind Poland’s threat to scupper a landmark climate deal this week.
Failure to agree an emissions target at a summit on October 23-24 would damage the EU’s status as a leader on climate change and sap momentum for a global deal in Paris next year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Merkel says Europe must reform emissions trading scheme quickly

Posted on 17 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Thursday that Europe must agree quickly on a reform of the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) and as part of that, surplus CO2 certificates must be reduced.
“The German government will push for a clear signal for a quick and sustainable reform of the Emission Trading Scheme. It is and remains the central instrument to fight climate change in Europe,” Merkel told the Bundestag lower house of parliament in a speech………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Steelmakers must embrace low carbon shift if they are to secure their future

Posted on 17 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The EU steel industry’s future depends on working with policy-makers to embrace low carbon and energy efficient practices, a new study has concluded. Research partnership Climate Strategies this week outlined how investment in exploiting the remaining energy efficiency potential of the industry, shifting from coal to gas-fired energy, and deploying carbon capture technology can help create a sustainable competitive advantage for the European steel sector.
Moving to higher value, lower weight steel that can contribute to emissions reductions in sectors such as transport and raising steel recycling rates are also identified as a means of modernising the steel industry and achieving climate benefits at the same time………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Europe needs to fix or ditch its emissions trading scheme

Posted on 16 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Without a complete overhaul, this flawed policy needs to be scrapped to make way for more effective means of meeting proposed 40% cuts in carbon emissions by 2030. If leaks are to be believed, when European council members meet next week, they will agree a headline target of a 40% cut in greenhouse gases by 2030 and a rag bag of assorted, non-binding targets that are intended to add up to a coherent energy and climate package.
They don’t, but the good news is it probably doesn’t matter. Of course a perfectly balanced, rational policy package would be good but that’s not going to happen, with the commission fighting internally, a parliament lacking teeth and member states out to win what they can to protect their own special interests………………………………………..Full Article: Source

EU carbon allowance surplus set to double by 2020

Posted on 16 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Europe’s carbon allowance surplus could more than double by the end of the decade, undermining its ability to deliver long term emissions reductions, according to campaign group Sandbag.
The group today published a major new report predicting the 2.1 billion ton oversupply of permits in the EU emissions trading scheme (ETS) seen at the end of 2013, could reach 4.5 billion over the next six years, with the surplus rising at an astonishing 13 tonnes each second………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Europe Carbon Permit Glut Poised to Double by 2020, Sandbag Says

Posted on 15 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Europe’s surplus of carbon emission permits may more than double by 2020, threatening to render the world’s biggest emissions trading system irrelevant for the future, according to environmental lobby group Sandbag.
The glut of allowances in the European Union carbon market, the bloc’s key policy tool to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, may climb to 4.5 billion metric tons in the next six years, from 2.1 billion tons at the end of 2013, London-based Sandbag said in a report today. ArcelorMittal, the world’s biggest steelmaker, had the biggest surplus, based on EU data compiled by Sandbag………………………………………..Full Article: Source

The Multibillion Dollar Question: How to Spend Carbon Revenues?

Posted on 15 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Debates over carbon pricing policies tend to focus on the costs imposed on firms and households. When a carbon tax or cap and trade program is introduced, firms see energy-related operating costs rise, drivers pay (cents) more at the pump, households see the prices of energy – and energy-intensive goods – tick up.
On the flip side, in addition to reducing harmful emissions, these policies generate revenues. Estimates of the total value of revenues from the auctioning of emissions allowances in the European Union’s Emission Trading Scheme are estimated to be around €10 billion annually. In California, lawmakers expect sales of greenhouse gas pollution permits to bring in $5 billion annually………………………………………..Full Article: Source

E.ON wants deep EU emissions cuts, early carbon trade reform

Posted on 14 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The head of Germany’s biggest utility, E.ON, said on Monday an EU package of 2030 targets for tackling climate change looks likely to bring deep carbon emissions cuts and early reforms to the bloc’s Emissions Trading System.
Leaders of the 28 EU countries meet on Oct. 23-24 to agree on a package of 2030 targets for emissions cuts, the deployment of renewable energy and the improvement of energy efficiency, as the bloc prepares for a 200-nation summit in Paris next year to strike a new U.N. deal on tackling climate change………………………………………..Full Article: Source

EU plans to revive lifeless carbon market

Posted on 14 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Since 2008, Europe’s carbon market has shown symptoms of terminal decline. Rock bottom prices for allowances have given industry little incentive to diversify away from fossil fuels.
But traders believe market sentiment is poised for a boost in the coming weeks, expecting signals from Brussels that EU leaders will try to resuscitate the Emissions Trading System, the world’s biggest cap-and-trade market, and redeploy it on the frontline of the battle against climate change………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Global CO2 pricing scheme surfaces ahead of 2015 climate summit

Posted on 13 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A team of scholars at Paris Dauphine University has proposed an international carbon trading system, whereby countries with the highest average CO2 emissions pay the most. A simple, yet ambitious scheme that hinges upon cooperation from the world’s largest emitter, China.
With the Paris climate conference just over a year away, there is broad agreement on the need for a credible, ambitious climate agreement, but big questions remain over what such an agreement should entail………………………………………..Full Article: Source

What Would Milton Friedman Do About Climate Change? Tax Carbon

Posted on 13 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Leading economists at the “Mecca” of free-market economics, the University of Chicago, evoked their most prominent predecessor, Milton Friedman, last week in advocating a price on carbon to address climate change.
At a forum called “What Would Milton Friedman Do About Climate Change?” former U.S. Rep Bon Inglis (R-SC) opened the discussion by playing a 1979 clip of Milton Friedman on the Phil Donahue Show: Phil Donahue: Is there a case for the government to do something about pollution?……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Poland to Oppose Tough Greenhouse Gas Targets at EU Summit

Posted on 10 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Poland will strongly oppose tough greenhouse gas emission targets at the upcoming European Union summit in Brussels later this month, Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz said Thursday.
Speaking to reporters after meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Ms. Kopacz stressed that the 2030 EU climate and energy package is a “very difficult” topic. Polish officials have argued that Poland, which joined the EU 10 years ago, has already strongly cut carbon emission levels compared with the 1990 levels………………………………………..Full Article: Source

European businesses split over urgency of EU carbon market fix

Posted on 10 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

European business groups are sharply divided over how quickly and aggressively the European Union needs to reform its Emissions Trading System (ETS), a division unlikely to help spur swift changes.
The European Commission has proposed that starting in 2021, it set aside hundreds of millions of surplus carbon allowances from the ETS to help firms cope with economic shocks, and drive carbon prices up to levels that encourage them to invest in lower carbon technologies………………………………………..Full Article: Source

European businesses split over urgency of EU carbon market fix

Posted on 09 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

European business groups are sharply divided over how quickly and aggressively the European Union needs to reform its Emissions Trading System (ETS), a division unlikely to help spur swift changes.
The European Commission has proposed from 2021 to set aside hundreds of millions of surplus carbon allowances from the ETS to help firms cope with economic shocks and drive carbon prices up to levels that encourage them to invest in lower carbon technologies………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Lawmaker proposes carbon trading to tackle climate change in Australia

Posted on 09 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

An Australian senator released on Wednesday a proposal to penalise companies failing to meet carbon emission targets and give firms access to the international carbon market, in a move to try and break a deadlock in the country’s climate policy.
Australia’s conservative Liberal party government in July repealed a tax on climate-changing greenhouse gas emissions for its 350 biggest companies, claiming the scheme was too costly while achieving little in terms of emission cuts………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Poland’s Veto Threat To Higher EU Emission Reduction Targets Could Derail Global Climate Treaty

Posted on 09 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Poland is at it again — threatening to derail any potential progress that the European Union can make before the world sits to agree on an international climate change agreement next year. Poland’s new prime minister has stated that she could veto a proposal by the EU to increase the emissions reduction target.
Several EU countries are calling for an enhancement of the emissions reduction target as the union is already on course to meet its 2020 targets and companies covered under its emissions trading scheme are sitting on billions of tonnes worth of emission allowances owing to the economic slowdown………………………………………..Full Article: Source

EU factories to pocket US$2.5b selling emissions permits

Posted on 08 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

European factories are poised to pocket a windfall of about $2.5 billion a year as utilities rush to buy emissions permits from manufacturers who get them free. Power producers from RWE AG to Vattenfall AB, Europe’s biggest greenhouse-gas emitters, will have to purchase about 200 million permits a year from plants through 2016, or about four times 2013 levels, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance in London.
The European Union in March cut the number of permits being sold in the world’s largest market to curb a record glut. The EU is temporarily withholding permits to encourage utilities to switch from fossil fuels, and the higher costs may be fed through to consumers, according to Eneco Holding BV, a Dutch utility………………………………………..Full Article: Source

French envoy says Canada needs to catch up to others on climate change

Posted on 08 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The man tasked by France’s President with building support for a global climate change treaty sees Canada as one of those countries unwilling to face up to the facts. Nicolas Hulot, French President François Hollande’s special envoy for the protection of the planet, sees the prospects of reaching an accord to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions in negotiations in Paris next year as daunting.
But he is optimistic. The two biggest players, the United States and China, now have reasons to deal with the issue. And, he believes, world leaders can no longer doubt the need for action. Sooner or later, Mr. Hulot warned, countries will have to accept that they cannot escape the consequences of climate change. And that means Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s assertion earlier this year – that nations will not act on climate if it would hurt their economy – is unrealistic………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gaming Carbon Must End to Solve Global Warming

Posted on 07 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Good Chinese communists now trade a commodity that can neither be seen nor felt, yet is responsible for changing the climate. The country has set up seven markets for trading carbon dioxide to test whether such a market can help restrain China’s growing pollution problem. Taken together, the markets are the second largest in the world—after the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme.
Early results from one of the markets, in the burgeoning city of Shenzhen, are promising, including reductions of 2.5 million metric tons of pollution, according to Vice Mayor Tang Jie. That’s in contrast to China as a country’s failure thus far to cut carbon intensity—the amount of pollution emitted as industry works—as promised in its 12th Five Year Plan, which ends next year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Climate Trades

Posted on 07 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

During the recent U.N. Climate Summit, it was hard not to think of the quip, attributed to Charles Dudley Warner, “Everyone complains about the weather, but no one does anything about it.” A parade of global leaders (including Barack Obama) made all the right noises, but there was little action.
So it was notable when Norway announced a deal with Liberia: Norway will give Liberia up to a hundred and fifty million dollars in aid, in exchange for which Liberia will work to stop the rapid destruction of its trees………………………………………..Full Article: Source

EU Nations CO2-Fix Replies Generally Positive, Italy Says

Posted on 06 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

European Union governments are “generally postive” about a proposal to create a carbon-market stability reserve, the Italian presidency of EU said. The plan, drafted by the European Commission, to create a fix for the EU emissions-trading system to help alleviate a record surplus needs a qualified majority of government votes and a majority support in the Parliament to be enacted.
“Some member states see the market stability reserve as a first step of the more comprehensive ETS reform that will be needed to implement the 2030 Framework,” the Italian presidency said in an e-mailed response to questions from Bloomberg News. “This also means that further proposals or positions might be put forward in the next weeks.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Carbon Regulation Becomes the Norm

Posted on 03 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Regulation of greenhouse gas emissions, including caps and prices, is spreading around the world. Jurisdictions without something in place are becoming the exception. Back in January I noted that carbon pricing is in place or legislated in jurisdictions accounting for around a quarter of the world’s CO2 emissions from energy and industry (with typically around half of emissions in these jurisdictions being priced).
This is a huge increase from ten years ago, just before the introduction of the EUETS, when the corresponding figure was less than 1%. But this trend is now set to go much further as limits on carbon emissions spread nationally in China and the USA. A national emissions trading scheme in China is expected before the end of this decade, following on from the provincial trial schemes already established. EPA regulation in the USA will introduce caps on emissions from the power sector to take effect from 2020………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Carbon emissions: Several US states, Canadian provinces launch own initiatives

Posted on 03 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Unsatisfied with the pace at which the federal government is acting to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, several U.S. states and a few Canadian provinces are forging ahead with their own initiatives. In 2013, California kicked off a cap-and-trade program in an effort to reduce its emissions to 1990 levels by 2020.
The first year of the program was a resounding success, with the state’s economy expanding while at the same time adding renewable energy. But carbon markets are more effective, and far more efficient, when they involve more entities in more places………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Canada launches world’s largest commercial carbon-capture project

Posted on 02 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Canada will launch the world’s first commercial-scale carbon capture and storage project at a coal-fired power plant on Thursday, a closely watched experiment designed to cut 90 percent of the plant’s carbon emissions.
The carbon-capture unit at the Boundary Dam power plant in Estevan, Saskatchewan, will be formally commissioned after a four-year C$1.35 billion ($1.21 billion) retrofit. Governments and industry around the world will be watching to see if the plant’s operator, SaskPower, can turn large-scale carbon capture and storage (CCS) into a commercial success………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Cutting carbon: Cap and trade — the sequel?

Posted on 02 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

When it comes to cutting carbon, what’s old, it seems, is new again. Exelon Corp. executives are using terms like “cap and trade” and “carbon tax” in describing how they think Illinois should lower its carbon footprint in anticipation of the Environmental Protection Agency’s bid to cut greenhouse gases from power plants.
At its first public presentation to Illinois regulators last week, Exelon Corp.’s remarks were brief. The Chicago-based parent company of Commonwealth Edison presented just three slides that explained how a more than $10-per-ton tax on carbon pollution could aid the company’s financially flailing nuclear plants………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Swiss bank Julius Baer says cooperating in EU carbon market tax fraud probe

Posted on 01 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Swiss private bank Julius Baer is cooperating in a French investigation into suspected money laundering and tax fraud by a former client involved in the European carbon allowances market, a spokeswoman said, following French media reports.
News agency AFP said last week the bank is suspected of receiving funds in a Swiss account that were linked to value-added tax (VAT) fraud in the EU Emissions Trading System, and of failing to perform adequate client checks………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Germany issues warrants for two in $171 mln CO2 trading fraud probe

Posted on 01 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

German authorities on Tuesday sought the arrest of two Pakistani nationals on suspicion of tax evasion of 136 million euros ($171 million) related to the European carbon market, widening a carbon trading probe that has also drawn in Deutsche Bank.
International arrest warrants were issued in late July for Mobeen Iqbal, 32, and Ashraf Muhammad, 35, both of whom are thought to be living in Dubai, the Frankfurt prosecutor’s office said in an emailed statement………………………………………..Full Article: Source

How Much of World’s Greenhouse-Gas Emissions Come From Agriculture?

Posted on 30 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Agriculture might seem green by definition, but farming accounts for a lot of greenhouse-gas emissions when the entire food production system is taken into account. Typically, estimates of greenhouse-gas emissions from agriculture are around 11%-15% of global emissions.
Estimates discussed earlier this week at the United Nations Climate Summit put that number closer to 50%. This is an important calculation as climate change issues come to the fore, with record greenhouse-gas emissions and international negotiations to halt that rise………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Beijing says emissions fell during first year of carbon trading

Posted on 30 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Carbon dioxide emissions from Beijing’s major polluters fell 4.5 percent in 2013 as a nascent emissions trading scheme cut compliance costs for firms, the Chinese capital’s municipal government said on Monday.
Beijing is one of seven cities and provinces in China that have launched pilot emissions trading schemes ahead of a national market to be launched in the world’s biggest-emitting nation in 2016. The Beijing market began in November, but with caps on CO2 emissions for participating companies backdated to the beginning of the year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Teething troubles

Posted on 30 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China is poised to launch a national carbon trading market – potentially the largest one in the world - but if its seven regional pilot projects are anything to go by, there is still much to be done.
As the world’s leading carbon emitter, China looms large in the climate change debate. So when a senior government official said in September that China plans to roll out a national carbon market in 2016, it raised hopes that the country is stepping up its efforts to rein in emissions. Although a move in the right direction, China’s early experiences with carbon trading show it has a long way to go………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Is the EU’s carbon market safe from fraud?

Posted on 30 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Four British men were jailed for their role in a multi-million euro carbon market crime syndicate last week, raising the spectre of security concerns over the future of emissions trading. But could such widespread theft happen again?
The National Crime Agency confirmed on Wednesday that Hanif Patel, 53, Ruman Patel, 32, Mohammed Patel, 52, and Ayyub Ibrahim, 60, were jailed for a total of nearly 19 years for their part in a crime ring that stole 500,000 EU carbon allowances from the Czech emissions registry, which at the time were worth €7m (£5m)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China Embraces Carbon Pricing and UN Takes a Shine to Plan

Posted on 29 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Millions of visitors and residents could hardly miss the message projected on the side of the world famous United Nations building in New York this week: “Put a price on carbon.”
At the UN’s Climate Summit this week a diverse group of global leaders, from World Bank president Jim Yong Kim to California Governor Jerry Brown, spoke of the need for polluters to pay for each ton of carbon they emit. More than 1,000 companies pledged their support for the effort………………………………………..Full Article: Source

South Korea to test carbon trading market ahead of launch

Posted on 29 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

South Korea’s securities exchange says it will test the country’s new emission trading market next ahead of its planned 2015 launch. The Korean Exchange (KRX), the country’s only securities bourse, landed the rights to manage the platform last year after an agreement with the Ministry of Environment.
Set to become the world’s second largest carbon trading market, the scheme will cap greenhouse gas emissions from over 400 of South Korea’s biggest emitters, mainly power generators and manufacturers. Firms will be given free permits by the government based on their historical emission levels, but must buy more in the market if their emissions exceed allocated levels………………………………………..Full Article: Source

A Clean Climate Must Be a Consumer Commodity

Posted on 26 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The United Nations Climate Summit which took place here in New York was, of course, a venue for important scientific releases highlighting the now well-established consensus on both the economic and social severity of inaction on global warming. These statements will bolster thoughtful proposals to move nations to a common ground on a framework for action.
While these efforts are critically needed, they are not enough. Without greater attention to individual consumers, we are likely to continue down the ineffective path where we’ve wandered for decades. Simply put, we need to take a fresh look at how to engage a national movement around the real benefits of a secure climate for humanity………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Progress at the U.N. summit included big steps for carbon pricing

Posted on 26 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

More than 100 world leaders gathered Tuesday at the United Nations in New York, along with over 800 leaders from business, finance and civil society, to confront the threat of climate change and to embrace the opportunities inherent in addressing it. The Climate Summit had two clear objectives: to reinvigorate the process that will lead to a meaningful universal climate agreement in Paris next year, and to catalyze significant action to cut emissions and reduce risk. The summit delivered.
First, climate change is now higher on the global political agenda than it has ever been. The summit succeeded in focusing the minds of decision makers whose influence will be essential in the run-up to climate negotiations in Lima this year and in Paris in 2015………………………………………..Full Article: Source

EU agrees to €5bn carbon permit giveaway

Posted on 26 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The European Parliament’s environment committee on Wednesday (24 September) narrowly upheld plans to give billions of euros worth of carbon allowances to heavy industries for free, in order to help them compete in global markets. The 67-strong cross-party parliamentary committee voted by 34 to 30, with three abstentions, to uphold the proposal.
It was supported by centre-right groups, and opposed by Greens and Liberal members, who said it would waste billions of euros of public funds on needless handouts to big business………………………………………..Full Article: Source

A clean climate must be a consumer commodity

Posted on 25 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Without a doubt, this week’s United Nations Climate Summit in New York City is a venue for important scientific releases highlighting the now well-established consensus on the severe consequences of inaction on global warming. These statements will bolster proposals to move nations toward common ground on a framework for action.
While these efforts are critically needed, they are not enough. Without greater attention to individual consumers, we are likely to continue down the ineffective path we’ve wandered for decades. Simply put, we must engage a national movement around the real benefits of a secure climate to each and every person………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Climate summit advances towards Paris deal

Posted on 25 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Despite the absence of India and Australia, a majority of prime ministers and presidents did as Mr Ban had asked. They came to New York with pledges of action. The French promised a billion dollars for the Green Climate Fund, a significant amount you might think, but miles from the goal of getting a hundred billion a year by 2020.
Following on from the Rockefeller Brothers Foundation divesting their dosh from fossil fuel, there were further significant announcements from institutional investors. Two of the largest asset managers and pension funds in Europe, have connected with the UN Environment Programme to “substantially reduce the carbon footprint of $100bn of institutional investment worldwide”………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Carbon pricing and politics

Posted on 25 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Existing carbon pricing initiatives are too modest in their current climate reduction targets to drive a meaningful transition to low-carbon technologies, report analysts at Thomson Reuters Point Carbon. A total of 73 countries and over 1000 companies signed onto the World Bank’s ‘price on carbon’ statement, presented ahead of the UN climate summit on 23 September, including the world’s largest emitter China.
The governments who signed up to the initiative represent 54% of global greenhouse gas emissions, many having already implemented carbon taxes or emission trading schemes domestically. Without more ambitious carbon reduction targets however, such pricing mechanisms will fall short of achieving their goal of a shift to low-carbon technologies and industries………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Carbon emission data not the whole story

Posted on 25 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The release of figures this week that show China’s carbon emissions have outstripped those of the European Union and the United States combined has caught the global eye, but it may also be misleading. The Global Carbon Project (GCP) data is meaningful in the way that it sounds alarms for China to confront its mountainous burden and continue the arduous task of cutting emissions and fighting climate change.
However, it would be hypocritical to use this data to impose more pressure and responsibilities on China, as it is a distorted reflection of the ‘who’ behind the carbon figures. At present, everybody looks to carbon emissions as a key in assessing a country’s responsibility in fighting climate change. It may be high time to revisit the old rules………………………………………..Full Article: Source

World’s biggest investors call for a price on carbon

Posted on 24 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

As they do preceding each U.N. Climate Summit, many of the world’s largest institutional investors sent a letter calling on world leaders to aggressively act on climate change.
Some 340 global investment managers issued the statement, representing $24 trillion in assets, up from $13 trillion in 2009 before the Copenhagen summit. Signatories include BlackRock, Calvert Investments, BNP Paribas Investment Partners, Standard Bank, CalPERS, PensionDanmark and Deutsche Bank………………………………………..Full Article: Source

U.N. climate summit sets goals to save forests, use clean energy

Posted on 24 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A United Nations summit on climate change agreed on Tuesday to widen the use of renewable energy and raise billions of dollars in aid for developing countries in an effort to increase the prospects for a wide-ranging deal to slow global warming.
The one-day summit, hosted by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, set goals to halt losses of tropical forests by 2030, improve food production and hike the share of electric vehicles in cities to 30 percent of new vehicle sales by 2030………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Rise of Carbon Markets Drives Interest In Linking Them, Speakers on Climate Say

Posted on 24 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The rise of carbon markets across the world is driving increased interest from companies and governments to link those markets together, representatives from companies and a Harvard University researcher said Sept. 22.
About 40 countries and more than 20 cities, states and provinces have carbon pricing policies or plan to launch them. Together, these carbon pricing instruments cover about 12 percent of annual global greenhouse gas emissions………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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