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*TOP STORY* Poland mulls domestic ETS, drafts law in response to wild EU price volatility -environment minister
Poland’s environment ministry is drafting a law in response to the wild volatility in EU carbon prices it claims is being driven by speculators, with the department’s minister calling for the government to reconsider the country’s participation in the bloc’s ETS and to mull introducing its own domestic market.
*EMEA* Russia “extremely concerned” by EU carbon border tax plans, says could break WTO rules
Russia is “extremely concerned” about the EU’s plans to introduce a carbon border adjustment mechanism (CBAM) to prevent carbon leakage, the country’s economic development minister said on Thursday. EU Market: EUAs sink on auction, stocks to end week down 5%
EU carbon prices dropped on Friday following a weaker auction result and amid falling equity markets to end the week down 5.2%.
*AMERICAS* California LCFS rulemaking kick-off postponed until at least fall -sources
California regulator ARB’s next rulemaking process for the state’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) will not start until autumn at the earliest as the agency deals with furloughs, regulatory sources told Carbon Pulse. WCI speculators cut holdings by largest amount since mid-May as compliance holds firm
Speculators reduced their California Carbon Allowance (CCA) holdings by their largest amount since May, while compliance entities kept their positions mostly flat week-on-week despite rising prices, according to US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) data published Friday.
*ASIA PACIFIC* Method stacking could unlock huge Australian offset potential, developers say
By tweaking the rules in Australia’s offset market, including to allow method stacking, the country could unlock vast offset potential to the tune of 2.5 billion carbon credits over the next decade, according to project developers. CN Markets: Pilot market data for week ending July 24, 2020
Closing prices, ranges and volumes for China’s regional pilot carbon markets this week.
*BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD*
*Resolution unresolved* – The US is, for the moment, vetoing a German proposal to the UN Security Council to set up a system to monitor climate change-related conflicts, as droughts and other environmental issues are increasingly being linked to the potential for armed conflicts around the world. While German diplomats indicated they had sufficient support for their draft resolution, the US – one of the UNSC’s permanent five members – made it clear it would oppose it. The 15 members of the UNSC held a videoconference on Friday to discuss the climate-security nexus to maintain international peace. (Clean Energy Wire)
*Impaired in Poland – *Polish utility Energa reported €200 mln in impairments on its 1GW coal-fired Ostroleka C project due to the earlier decision to scrap it, Montel reports
*OKD Bye – *The Board of Directors of Czech state-owned mining company OKD issued on Wednesday a press release recommending a definitive shutdown of all its mines as early as 2021 or 2022, New Europe reports
*Pump it up* – The capacity of pumped storage hydro power stations available to the German energy system is expected to grow by about 1.4 GW by 2030, with roughly a third of the capacity being installed abroad, the German government said in an answer to a parliamentary inquiry by the opposition FDP. According to planning by the Federal Network Agency (BNetzA), the capacity will be provided by five new plants, two of which will be built outside of Germany. Regarding storage needs for its target of bringing the renewables share of power consumption to 65% by 2030, the government said it does not have any preferences for technology used for renewable energy storage. There currently are 26 pumped storage hydro power stations in Germany with a total capacity of 6.3 GW and a further 3.4 GW are “regularly” provided from stations abroad. (Clean Energy Wire)
*Fake news* – Contrary to media reports, German utility Uniper will not be converting its coal plant at the Maasvlakte industrial site to use hydrogen as a feedstock, ICIS reports. A Uniper spokesperson this week told Montel that the company could modify its plant in the Netherlands to handle multiple fuels, including hydrogen, in response to the nation’s plan to phase out coal by 2030. The site is said to offer advantages for potential industrial hydrogen consumers due to its strategic proximity to offshore wind farms and a high voltage grid. Uniper’s hard coal unit Maasvlakte 3 (1,070 MW), in operation since 2015, is one of three new coal plants in the Netherlands that account for around 3.5 GW in total.
*Really fake news –* An article linking climate change to Earth’s solar orbit went viral last year
*Time for your probe – *British MPs plan to scrutinise the government’s green economic plans and industrial strategy to test whether they are still fit for purpose in the wake of the coronavirus crisis, the Guardian reports
*Dog days await? –* Massachusetts state Senate and House leaders have begun conversations
*The Jersey (Off)Shore – *The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) on Wednesday announced plans for a second offshore wind solicitation
*Marshall matters –* Illinois Senator Tammy Duckworth (D) introduced the Marshall Plan for Coal Country Act on Thursday. The legislation would provide $15 bln in loans for plants to install carbon capture technology and pipeline infrastructure to carry sequestered carbon to storage facilities. The bill would also expand Medicare to all US coal workers who have lost their jobs, increase the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour, and make higher education free for coal workers and their families. (Politico)
*Stern lecture –* Coal should play no part in any country’s post-coronavirus stimulus plan and economic recovery should align with global climate goals, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said
*And finally… And so it begins* – The great climate migration has begun, reports the New York Times magazine and ProPublica in the first of a new series of interactive articles on the topic
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