In today’s edition, has “What’s the long-term impact of the EU’s carbon market crisis?”, while USA Today gives us an update on “Senate panel votes to shield U.S. airlines from EU fees.” The Hill joins in on widespread coverage of wind tax subsidy break, posting “Obama official: Ending wind credit could have ‘devastating effect.’”

Quote of the Day:

“To be successful over the long-term, this program is going to have to deliver demonstrable benefits for Californians — benefits that we (not only) can see in terms of the environment and air quality, but also benefits that we can see in terms of economic development, job creation, cleaner energy and transportation infrastructure.”

Mary Nichols, chair of the California Air Resources Board, in the Forbes column “California’s Carbon Caps are Contentious but Coming”

Lead Stories

What’s the long-term impact of the EU’s carbon market crisis?
The European Union’s new plan to shore up its Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) following a plunge in carbon prices underscores just how volatile – and vulnerable – the carbon emissions trading market has become.

Preview of the EU Emissions Trading System Meeting
US State Department Special Briefing Transcript
Hi, folks. It’s [Moderator]. I’m sorry for the late notification for the call. We’ve been getting a couple of inquiries on ETS, and we have for you today [Senior Administration Official]. The ground rules for the call are we’re going to do this on background, attributable to a Senior Administration Official. There will be a time for a few questions before [Senior Administration Official] has to leave, but with that I will turn it over to [Senior Administration Official].
Senate panel votes to shield U.S. airlines from EU fees
USA Today
A Senate panel voted Tuesday to prevent U.S. airlines from paying billions in fees to Europe for the emissions from their planes.

U.S. takes action on EU efforts to regulate aviation carbon emissions        
Commodities Now
The United States Senate is poised to take action regarding the European Union’s controversial effort to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from the airline business sector. It is anticipated that senators will begin crafting a law this week that would prohibit U.S. airlines from participating in the EU’s trading system for aviation emissions. The bill is expected to be introduced in the Senate’s Commerce Committee – O’Melveny & Myers LLP.

California’s Carbon Caps are Contentious but Coming
Forbes (Contributor Ken Silverstein, Energy Central Editor)
November marks a big date. It’s not just about a presidential election. It’s also about the kick off to California’s cap-and-trade system to limit carbon emissions.

Fall As Transition To Cleaner Energy Accelerates
It’s been a long hot summer of cataclysmic environmental events – drought, derecho, half of India in the dark – but here’s some good news: Thanks to cheap natural gas and a boom in renewable energy, the U.S. is accelerating a shift away from coal-fired power plants, resulting in falling emissions of carbon dioxide and other harmful pollutants, according to a report released Tuesday.
**RKB – The report mentioned in this piece follows below.

Benchmarking Air Emissions
Of the 100 Largest Electric Power Producers in the United States

India’s power outage: Why coal hasn’t been a savior
The Christian Science Monitor
Gulam’s youthful brown eyes gaze at the coal mines just a few yards from the tiny thatched hut she shares with her family.
**RKB — Additional Indian coverage in Power section.

China Deals Meet Growing Scrutiny as Suntech Spurs Questions
Suntech Power Holdings Co. (STP)’s admission that it may have failed to verify the existence of German bonds it accepted as loan collateral adds to growing concerns about Chinese business practices that are sparking a wave of lawsuits and regulatory probes.

Money for mangroves
The Carbon Brief blog
Mangroves spanning the world’s tropical waters perform many functions, including locking up carbon. By working out how much carbon they store, and how much it would cost to preserve them, a new study in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that protecting mangroves is actually cheaper – for each tonne of carbon dioxide emissions avoided –  than buying into the EU’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).

CME Group Launches Instant Messaging Platform for Energy Trading Community
Press Release
CME Group, the world’s leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace, today announced the launch of CME Direct Messenger, a sophisticated instant messaging platform for traders in the energy markets. CME Direct Messenger will be powered by market-leading instant messaging software developed by Pivot, Inc., which was recently acquired by CME Group.

Opinion: Corn for Food, Not Fuel
The New York Times
It is not often that a stroke of a pen can quickly undo the ravages of nature, but federal regulators now have an opportunity to do just that. Americans’ food budgets will be hit hard by the ongoing Midwestern drought, the worst since 1956. Food bills will rise and many farmers will go bust.


GreenGov Symposium
ACCO & White House Council on Environmental Quality
September 24-25, 2012

Carbon Forum North America
October 1-2, 2012
Washington, DC

Sustainability Summit – Innovation Challenge
October 9, 2012
New York

EMA  2012 Fall Meeting
**Keynote speaker is Richard Sandor
October 24 – October 26, 2012
Santa Monica, CA


Nanaimo joins RDN emissions-reduction agreement
Nanaimo Bulletin
Regional District of Nanaimo municipalities are teaming up to fight climate change and pursue goals of carbon emission reduction.

Question marks over financial returns from storing carbon in soil
ABC Rural
Doubts have been raised about the financial viability of farmers long term sequestering carbon in soil.

Natural Gas/Coal

The decline of U.S. coal, in three charts
Washington Post Wonkblog
Coal has been the most popular way to generate electricity in America for as long as electricity has been around. For decades, coal’s top spot seemed unassailable. But that’s all changing, incredibly rapidly. For a variety of reasons — from the advent of cheap natural gas from fracking to new EPA rules on air pollution — coal plants across the United States are shutting down. The older, dirtier plants especially are no longer economical.


2nd Day of Power Failures Cripples Wide Swath of India
The New York Times
It had all the makings of a disaster movie: More than half a billion people without power. Trains motionless on the tracks. Miners trapped underground. Subway lines paralyzed. Traffic snarled in much of the national capital.

An Electrical Grid Is Pressed to Its Limit
The New York Times
The Indian electrical grid, said Arshad Mansoor, the senior vice president for research and development at the Electric Power Research Institute in Palo Alto, Calif., is like “a whole bunch of rubber bands.” Cutting some, he said, might make no difference, but cutting another one could make the web fall apart.

Singh Answers Sought as Worst Power Crisis May Hurt Growth
Keeping the lights on has emerged as Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s most immediate challenge.

Top U.S. Solar Company Profits Amid Red for Industry: Energy
First Solar Inc. (FSLR) Chairman Mike Ahearn has found the best way to make money from photovoltaics is to sell whole power plants to Warren Buffett and NextEra Energy Inc. (NEE) instead of competing with China on panel sales.

Vestas Surges on Deal With Creditors as Shipments Rise
Vestas Wind Systems A/S (VWS) surged the most in 15 weeks after the turbine maker said it reached an agreement with banks allowing it to draw on credit lines and second quarter shipments more than doubled.

Consolidated Edison Unit Buys Two Solar Plants From GCL-Poly
Consolidated Edison Inc. (ED)’s development unit bought two solar plants in California from GCL- Poly Energy Holdings Ltd. for $266 million, its first acquisition in the state.

Northwest Utilities Exceed Green Power Minimum
Oregon Public Broadcasting
Electric utilities in the Northwest have overachieved in meeting requirements to add renewable energy to their portfolios. That’s according to fresh regulatory filings.


Sudden End of Renewables’ Tax Aid May Be Devastating, FERC Says
An arbitrary and immediate end of production tax credits may have a “devastating effect” on the U.S. renewable-energy industry, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Chairman Jon Wellinghoff said.

Romney’s Wind Stance Raises Iowa Risks
Wall Street Journal
The Romney campaign finally came out firmly against tax credits for wind power. That might sound like a pretty marginal issue nationwide, but in a state such as Iowa—home to more wind-sector jobs than any other state—it’s a pretty big deal.

Grassley wants answers from Romney camp on extending wind tax credit
The Hill
Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) isn’t yet convinced that Mitt Romney really wants to kill production tax credits for wind energy projects, incentives that have helped fuel a wind boom in the Hawkeye State, a battleground in this year’s presidential election.

Obama official: Ending wind credit could have ‘devastating effect’
The Hill
Letting the wind production tax credit (PTC) expire at the end of this year “could have a devastating effect” on the wind energy industry, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Chairman Jon Wellinghoff said Tuesday.


Benchmarking Air Emissions Of the 100 Largest Electric Power Producers in the United States (Posted July 31, 2012)

Per capita CO2 emissions in China reached European level (July 18, 2012)

The Interim Regulation of Voluntary Greenhouse Gases Emission Trading in China (Posted July 10, 2012)
The Climate Group

Measure for Management: C40 Cities (July 9, 2012)
Carbon Disclosure Project

Characterizing Pivotal Sources of Methane Emissions from Unconventional Natural Gas Production (Posted June 4, 2012)

Vulnerability of US and European electricity supply to climate change (Posted June 4, 2012)
Nature Climate Change

Developing Dimension: State of the Voluntary Carbon Markets 2012 (Posted May 31, 2012)
Ecosystem Marketplace

Tackling exposure: placing disaster risk management at the heart of national economic and fiscal policy (Posted May 22, 2012)

Fossil fuel price shocks and a low carbon economy (Posted May 21, 2012)

Using the Allowance Value from California’s Carbon Trading System: Legal Risk Factors, Impacts to Ratepayers and the Economy (Posted May 17, 2012)

Inclusive Green Growth: The Pathways to Sustainable Development (Posted May 9, 2012)
World Bank

Meeting Canada’s 2020 Climate Change Commitments (Posted May 8, 2012)
Office of Auditor General

View all reports >

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