As the final countdown has started at the COP21, the world’s biggest climate polluters rallied around a stronger target for limiting warming on Monday, saying they were open to the 1.5C goal endorsed by the most vulnerable countries. Aside from the conference, new data suggests  that the period of soaring global emissions may have peaked. Finally, as some countries still haven’t committed to cutting emissions (like Venezuela, Uzbekistan, Libya, North Korea), some, like John Kerry, bet on businesses to finish the job. 

Quote of the day

“I don’t frankly look to government to solve this problem over the course of the next few years. It’s not going to happen. I look to the private sector.”

Secretary of State John Kerry, in the Hill’s story Kerry says he’s looking to the private sector to ‘solve’ climate change 

Lead stories

Kerry says he’s looking to the private sector to ‘solve’ climate change 
By Timothy Cama – The Hill 
Secretary of State John Kerry downplayed the importance Monday of a climate change agreement with legally binding emissions reduction targets. 
***LB: Also in this story “Speaking at an event coinciding with the Paris climate talks, Kerry said that an accord without binding reductions, like what many world leaders want out of Paris, would be enough for the private sector to get the needed reductions.” 

Obama energy chief lays out wish list for final Paris deal 
By Devin Henry – The Hill
Carbon reduction verification methods and a process for updating and renewing climate goals top the American wish list for a final deal before the Paris climate conference ends this week, Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said Monday.  

Paris climate talks: biggest polluters back tougher warming target 
By Suzanne Goldenberg and John Vidal – The Guardian
The world’s biggest climate polluters rallied around a stronger target for limiting warming on Monday, saying they were open to the 1.5C goal endorsed by the most vulnerable countries.

(Canada’s) Catherine McKenna pushes for 1.5 C target in Paris climate talks 
By Shawn McCarthy and Eric Reguly – The Globe and Mail
Canada has endorsed a call from small island nations to hold global warming to no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, putting Ottawa out of step with the United States, which has maintained a 2 C target.

North Korea, Syria and Eight Other Nations Missing From Climate Pledges 
By Alex Morales – Bloomberg News 
Just 10 nations are sitting on the sidelines of the United Nations effort to rein in climate change, which drew unprecedented support from world leaders last week who turned out in record numbers to get the talks going in Paris.

UN head warns of ‘climate catastrophe’ without Paris deal 
By Timothy Cama – The Hill
The head of the United Nations is urgently pushing negotiators in Paris to come to a deal to fight climate change and warning of catastrophe without it. 

10 tests to find out if Paris’s climate change deal is a success 
By Adil Najam – The Guardian  
Ministers are back in Paris for the final stretch of COP 21 negotiations. A draft is in hand, peppered with the brackets that indicate areas of disagreement. 
***LB: Also in this story “France’s foreign minister, Laurent Fabius, is busy constructing coalitions. The process of paring down the brackets has begun in earnest.”

New Data Suggest Period of Soaring Global Emissions May Have Peaked 
By Justin Gillis and Chris Buckley – The New York Times  
Industrial emissions of greenhouse gases rose only slightly in 2014 and appear to be on track to decline in 2015, according to new data that raise the possibility that a period of rapid global emissions growth may be coming to an end. 

Michael Bloomberg to head global task force on climate change 
By Larry Elliott – The Guardian  
Michael Bloomberg, the former New York City mayor, is to head a new global task force aimed at highlighting the financial exposure of companies to the risk of climate change.


EUEC 2016 Conference & Expo
Feb 3 – Feb 5, 2016
San Diego Convention Center, CA 


New Carbon Market Years Away Says Envoy Seeking Paris Allies 
By Mathew Carr – Bloomberg News (+ Video)
The latest attempt to create an international carbon market will take about four more years and may prompt some countries to press ahead with their own emissions trading rules, according to New Zealand’s climate minister, who’s seeking to hasten talks on the subject at climate negotiations in Paris.

Iberdrola’s Galan Seeks Price on Carbon Emissions From UN Talks 
By Anna Hirtenstein – Bloomberg News  
Iberdrola SA Chief Executive Officer Jose Ignacio Sanchez Galan believes that a legally binding agreement that puts a price on carbon would be the best way forward from the United Nations climate summit.

New York Pension, Goldman Form $2 Billion Low-Carbon Fund 
By Alex Nussbaum – Bloomberg News  
New York State’s retirement fund, the third-largest U.S. public pension, will shift $2 billion of its holdings away from big emitters of greenhouse gases as part of a new fund created with the help of Goldman Sachs Group Inc.

Africa plans renewable energy drive that could make continent world’s cleanest  
By John Vidal – The Guardian
An Africa-wide mega-scale initiative backed by all African heads of state should see the continent greatly increase its renewable energy over the next 15 years.

Natural gas / coal

Glencore Cuts Output, Jobs at Aussie Coal Mine as Prices Tumble 
By James Paton – Bloomberg News  
Glencore Plc, the world’s biggest shipper of power-station coal, is cutting production and more than three-quarters of the jobs at a mine in Australia’s Queensland state after a plunge in prices.

Lingering Warmth in U.S. East Sends Natural Gas to Two-Week Low 
By Christine Buurma  – Bloomberg News 
When Christmas is around the corner and there’s no frigid weather in sight for the U.S. East, it’s more bad news for natural gas bulls.

Chevron starts natural gas production from two new wells in Bangladesh 
Chevron has started producing gas from two new wells in the Bangladeshi state of Sylhet, aimed at easing the country’s chronic energy shortages.  

Egypt to pay Israel Electric $1.76 bln for halting gas supplies 
Israel Electric Corp , Israel’s state-owned electric utility, said on Sunday Egyptian natural gas companies will pay compensation of $1.76 billion for halting gas supplies. 


Power grid operator future tops Greece-lenders talks 
By Angeliki Koutantou – Reuters
Greece and its lenders start talks on Monday on how to split off its electricity grid operator from dominant power utility PPC and make other reforms needed for Athens to receive fresh aid under its international bailout.

Kyocera, Century Tokyo Complete 10MW Solar Power Plant in Japan 
By Chisaki Watanabe – Bloomberg News  
Kyocera Corp. and Century Tokyo Leasing Corp. completed a 10-megawatt solar power station in the western prefecture of Hyogo in Japan.

Google’s Clean-Power Deal Shows Wind Farms Finding New Customers 
By Brian Eckhouse – Bloomberg News  
Renewable-energy developers are increasingly selling wind power straight to the users, tapping a new customer base as some traditional utility buyers are backing away.

Clean tech

Tesla Hopes Hiring 1,656 People Will Make It Profitable 
By Dana Hull – Bloomberg News  
Need a job? Not too particular about whether the company is profitable? Check out Tesla’s website.


South Africa to Raise Water Prices to Boost Supply: Sunday Times 
By Kevin Crowley – Bloomberg News  
Water tariff increases in South Africa are unavoidable next year, Johannesburg-based Sunday Times reported, citing an interview with Water Minister Nomvula Mokonyane. 

Ghana approves major hikes in electricity, water tariffs 
By Kwasi Kpodo – Reuters
Ghana’s utility regulator increased tariffs for electricity and water by up to 89 percent on Monday in a renewed bid to attract competitive private investment to the sector as the West African nation grapples with a crippling power crisis.

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