Time to fess up in today’s edition. After much denial, Canada’s premier Stephen Harper says the country needs new policies to meet emissions reduction goal. Also, Shell released documents showing it successfully lobbied to undermine European renewable energy targets, while former Shell UK boss James Smith says that majors should develop tools, such as low-carbon technologies, to address climate change. 

Quote of the day

“In a low carbon world, there are three potentially important technologies for which oil and gas companies are the natural owners: CCS can be used with oil, gas and biomass to make low carbon electricity; advanced biofuels can be made from crop wastes and microbes using advanced catalysis; and fossil fuels can be used, with CCS, as a source for hydrogen as a major means of storing and carrying low carbon energy.”

James Smith, former chairman of Shell UK who now serves as chairman of green consultancy Carbon Trust, in the BusinessGreen’s story Former Shell boss: Fossil fuel industry must ‘change profoundly’ 

Lead stories   

After diplomatic blitz, EU sees progress by June towards U.N. climate deal 
By Alister Doyle – Reuters 
The European Union expects that countries emitting more than half of world greenhouse gases will publish plans for fighting global warming by mid-year to help build a U.N. deal due in December, according to an EU document obtained by Reuters.

Abbott’s Maligned Carbon-Cut Measures Face French Scrutiny
By Jason Scott – Bloomberg News
Australia to curb its carbon emissions when he meets France’s President Francois Hollande in Paris.  

Canada needs new policies to meet emissions reduction goal, Harper says 
By Shawn McCarthy – The Globe and Mail
Canada faces significantly higher costs than the United States to meet the same targets for greenhouse-gas reduction, a difference that is heightened by federal delays in policy action.  

Shell lobbied to undermine EU renewables targets, documents reveal 
By Arthur Neslen – The Guardian 
Shell successfully lobbied to undermine European renewable energy targets ahead of a key agreement on emissions cuts reached in October last year, newly released documents reveal. 

Former Shell boss: Fossil fuel industry must ‘change profoundly’ 
By James Murray – BusinessGreen 
The former chairman of Shell UK has today argued the entire oil and gas industry needs to “strengthen its voice” in its response to climate change and step up efforts to develop low carbon technologies.


World Green Economy Summit 2015 
22 April 2015 – 23 April 2015
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Navigating the American Carbon World (NACW) 2015
North America’s premier conference on climate policy and carbon markets
Presented by the Climate Action Reserve
April 28-30, 2015
Los Angeles, California  

The National Fuel Cell Symposium 2015
Industry, government, and academia will convene to discuss the current state of the Stationary Fuel Cell development and deployment in the U.S.
May 7, 2015 
Sacramento, California 

Nearing the Finish Line: Perspectives and Updates on EPA’s Clean Power Plan (webinar)
April 23, 2015; 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. EDT

Northeast RECs Regional Thought Leader Round Table
May 19, 2015; 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. EST
Dentons: 1221 Avenue of the Americas, NY

EMA Annual Meeting
October 28-30, 2015
Omni Parker House Hotel
Boston, MA


Carbon Pricing Helping Farmers Ease Methane Pollution 
By John Upton  – Climate Central
Leo Van Warmerdam pointed to a red shed housing a large generator on his family’s dairy farm as he loped over two acres of manure.

Climate tracker: What’s happened to pledges for Paris summit?
By Ed King – RTCC (Responding to Climate Change) 
So far, 36 countries  have revealed how they will contribute to a global climate change pact, set to be agreed in Paris later this year. 

Australia’s Direct Action fund may need $1bn more to meet emissions target 
By Nick Evershed – The Guardian 
The Australian government’s Direct Action emissions reduction fund could require up to $1bn of extra funds to meet its carbon emissions reduction goal, according to a Guardian Australia analysis based on initial auction results.

Natural gas / coal

The U.S. Has Nearly 600 Coal Waste Sites. Why They’ve Got West Virginians Worried 
By Erin L. McCoy – Yes!
Marsh Fork Elementary, deep in West Virginia coal country, is shut down and fenced in, a fine layer of dirt covering its once-cheerful sign: “Staff-Students-Parents Working Together.”


China seeks united front in reactor export push 
By Lucy Hornby – Financial Times  
China’s domestic nuclear rivalries are spilling overseas as state-owned rivals jostle to promote their reactor designs despite Beijing’s efforts to present a united front. 

Clean tech

Space-bound energy storage system could power your commute 
By Will Nichols – BusinessGreen 
A new energy storage technology chosen by the European Space Agency (ESA) to help satellites store solar power could soon be used to run electric cars back on Earth. 

RBS green innovation programme could save bank £7.5m 
By Will Nichols – BusinessGreen
A cap for urinals and a power-saving app have helped put an RBS programme to adopt green innovations on course to save the company over £300,000 during its first year. 


Drought Frames Economic Divide of Californians 
By Adam Nagourney and Jack Healy – The New York Times 
Alysia Thomas, a stay-at-home mother in this working-class city, tells her children to skip a bath on days when they do not play outside; that holds down the water bill. 


Arctic Oil Spills In Canada Likely To Spread Across Borders: Study 
By Bob Weber – The Canadian Press 
New research suggests that any type of significant oil spill in Canada’s western Arctic would likely spread quickly and foul oceans around Alaska and possibly as far west as Russia.  

US To Assume Arctic Council Chair Amid Dispute Over Russian Military Moves 
By Tim Ellis – KUAC  
The United States will take over Friday as chair of the Arctic Council, the international body of representatives from eight nations with territory in the region.

How Many More? 116 Environmental Defenders Were Murdered Last Year, Mostly in Latin America 
By Billy Kyte – Democracy Now 
As we continue to mark Earth Day, we look at a new report that finds killings of environmental activists on the rise, with indigenous communities hardest hit.

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