Quote of the Day

“I think what’s happened around the Keystone is a wake-up call, the degree to which we are dependent or possibly held hostage to decisions in the United States, and especially decisions that may be made for very bad political reasons.”

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, in the AP’s Thwarted on US oil pipeline, Canada looks to China
Lead Stories

Regional Cap-and-Trade Effort Seeks Greater Impact by Cutting Carbon Allowances

The New York Times
Adjusting to shifts in the economy, states in the cap-and-trade system known as the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative have slashed the number of allowances that electric power companies can buy to offset their emissions.
**RKB – Study, from November, runs below.

The Economic Impacts of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative on Ten Northeast and Mid-Atlantic States

Reaping a Bonus From Cap-and-Trade

The New York Times’ Green blog
Criticism of cap-and-trade programs often centers on the costs they impose on electric power companies and their consumers. But as I report in Friday’s Times, New York and other Northeastern and mid-Atlantic states that are trying out such a system have found that those costs can be offset by energy efficiency measures paid for by the cap-and-trade program itself.

**JK – Story also says “that states participating in the program had received $912 million over three years by charging electricity providers for their carbon dioxide emissions. Many of the states invested most of those funds in programs to retrofit homes and buildings to make them more energy-efficient, lowering consumption of electricity.”

MPs attack go-it-alone carbon price floor

Financial Times
British industry faces a “devastating effect” from the government’s decision to set tougher carbon penalties than the rest of Europe, while consumers will have to pay
artificially high electricity prices, a committee of MPs has warned.
**JK – Whatever happened to fewer credits?

Point Carbon slashes CO2 price outlook by 20-42 pct

Point Carbon
Thomson Reuters Point Carbon analysts have slashed their price forecasts for EU Allowances and U.N.-backed offsets for the second time in two months to reflect swelling supplies and the demand destruction caused by the euro zone debt crisis.

World Bank sees carbon finance role for years

The World Bank’s carbon finance initiatives will likely be needed for at least five years, as the United Nations struggles to create a self-sufficient, international carbon market, the manager of the bank’s carbon finance unit told Reuters.

IFC, UK gov’t to invest $150 mln in climate fund
The International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the UK government will invest around $150 million in the IFC Climate Catalyst Fund LP, to provide capital to low-carbon projects in emerging markets, the World Bank investment arm said on Friday.

Thwarted on US oil pipeline, Canada looks to China
The latest chapter in Canada’s quest to become a full-blown oil superpower unfolded this month in a village gym on the British Columbia coast.

Keystone to be linked to U.S. highway bill: Boehner

Republican lawmakers will try to force the Obama administration to approve the Canada-to-Texas Keystone XL pipeline by attaching it to a highway bill that Congress will consider next month, House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner said on Sunday.

**JK – The two initiatives are so obviously linked. Good move Boehner.

EU Sees No Need to Further Regulate Shale Gas

The Wall Street Journal
There is no need for new legislation to regulate shale gas exploration in the European Union, according to a study published Friday that proposed the bloc adopt a low profile on the controversial issue.

Opinion: Shale gas fate trips up on politics and bubblenomics

Financial Times
Just before the shale gas industry was blessed as good in the president’s State of the Union address last week, it admitted it was broke.
**JK – A 101 lesson in supply/demand.

Wyo. gov says changing wind energy tax unlikely
Gov. Matt Mead says he’s given up hope that the Wyoming Legislature this year will roll back state tax increases on wind energy production and construction of wind energy projects.
**JK – A lesson in politics. According the the National Mining Association “Wyoming ranks #1 in the nation in coal production and #13 in the nation in coal use” and C”coal provided 92.8 percent of Wyoming’s electric power generation in 2009.”

Energy Tax Breaks Proposed, Despite Waning Support for Subsidies
The New York Times
Assisted by technological innovation and years of subsidies, the cost of wind and solar power has fallen sharply — so much so that the two industries say that they can sometimes deliver cleaner electricity at prices competitive with power made from fossil fuels.

Solar CEOs Predict Boom in China Will Ease Glut in 2012: Energy

China may double its installations of solar panels this year, absorbing excess production that depressed prices and margins in 2011, chief executive officers from two of the industry’s top five manufactures said.

EPA Rejects Palm-Oil Based Biodiesel for Renewable Fuels Program

The Environmental Protection Agency said that biodiesel made from palm oil doesn’t meet the requirements to be added to its renewable fuels program because its greenhouse-gas emissions are too high.

How to Manage U.S. Forests, Version 3.1
The New York Times Green blog
In the high-tech world, new versions of programs are released to fix new bugs. In the federal regulatory world, new versions of management blueprints are released to address legal problems. Each is generally judged by a simple metric: did the fixes work, or will they have to be redone?

Firms unsure of legal duty to report emissions

Business Green
A third of companies are unsure of their legal carbon reporting requirements, a study has shown.

AEP Reports 2011 Fourth-Quarter And Year-End Earnings, Brings Clarity To Regulatory Issues, Strengthens Balance Sheet

Press Release
American Electric Power (NYSE:AEP) today reported 2011 year-end earnings, prepared in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), of $1.941 billion or $4.02 per share, compared with $1.211 billion or $2.53 per share in 2010. Ongoing earnings (earnings excluding special items) for 2011 were $1.504 billion or $3.12 per share, compared with $1.451 billion or $3.03 per share in 2010.



Exxon selling Japanese subsidiary in $3.9B deal
Exxon Mobil Corp. says it is selling its Japanese subsidiary to partner company TonenGeneral Sekiyu K.K. in a deal valued at $3.9 billion.
**repeats in Asia

American Lawmakers Warned of Emerging Nuclear Power Market Risks and China’s Possible Domination
Press Release
Cleantech analyst firm Kachan & Co. was among a number of voices in Washington this week advocating American lawmakers support new safer, cleaner nuclear power options in the face of growing Chinese enthusiasm for the technologies.

Better Place’s Ofer Sees 2015 as Tipping Point for Electric Cars

Better Place LLC, a U.S. startup developing charging stations for electric vehicles, expects the “tipping point” for its business to come as soon as 2015, Chairman Idan Ofer said at the World Economic Forum in Davos. Switzerland today.

NextEra Sees Opportunities For Renewable-Energy Asset Purchases

NextEra Energy Inc. (NEE) is optimistic there will be “additional opportunities” to make renewable- energy asset acquisitions, Chief Financial Officer Moray Dewhurst said today during a conference call with investors.

Midwest utility to shut coal-burning power plants
Akron Beacon-Journal
FirstEnergy Corp. on Thursday said it will retire six coal-fired power plants, including four in Ohio, because of stricter federal anti-pollution rules.


Just Energy Group Inc. to Begin Trading on the New York Stock Exchange on January 30, 2012

Press release
Just Energy Group Inc. CA:JE +1.03% is pleased to announce that its common shares have been approved for listing and trading on the New York Stock Exchange (“NYSE”) commencing on January 30, 2012 under the trading ticker symbol “JE”. The Company’s common shares will continue to be listed for trading in Canada on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the same symbol.

Encana named to 2012 Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations list

Press Release
Encana has again been named to Corporate Knights Magazine’s Global 100 World Leaders in Clean Capitalism list, which was officially unveiled in Davos, Switzerland on January 25, 2012. Based on its 2011 environmental, social and governance performance, Encana ranked 76th overall, and is one of only six Canadian companies included on the 2012 Global 100 list.



Spain Suspends Subsidies for New Renewable Energy Power Plants
Spain halted subsidies for renewable energy projects to help curb its budget deficit and rein in power-system borrowings backed by the state that reached 24 billion euros ($31 billion) at the end of 2011.

Austria ponders upping Kyoto purchase plan

Point Carbon
Austria is contemplating buying more U.N.-backed carbon credits to help it get back on track to meeting its Kyoto Protocol emissions target, a senior environment ministry official said.

David Cameron’s eco-friendly image risks ‘retoxification’, warns WWF chief

The head of the charity that helped arrange David Cameron’s memorable husky photoshoot in the Arctic, launching the Conservatives’ rebranding as the nice-not-nasty party, has warned that the PM’s lack of leadership on environment issues risks “retoxifying” their image.


Exxon selling Japanese subsidiary in $3.9B deal
Exxon Mobil Corp. says it is selling its Japanese subsidiary to partner company TonenGeneral Sekiyu K.K. in a deal valued at $3.9 billion.
**repeats in US

India Government to Set Up Solar Firm

The Wall Street Journal
India is setting up a company with initial capital of 20 billion rupees ($405.6 million) to build federal solar projects and help the country reach a target of 20 gigawatts of solar energy capacity by 2022, a top government official said.

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