Today’s edition focuses on info on carbon trading, a key component of policies addressing climate change. While the value of the global carbon market grew by 15 percent in 2014, South Korea opens a trading exchange next week and two Shanghai-based companies launched a $32 million fund to invest in projects that generate carbon credits for China’s fledgeling carbon market. 

Quote of the day

“We don’t expect the cap-and-trade system to be vigorous from the beginning because it takes time for a new system to take root. We will implement various measures under mid- and long-term plans to facilitate trading depending on the market situation.”

Yoon Suk-youn, in charge of the Korea Exchange’s derivatives market division, in the Yonhap’s story S. Korea to open carbon trading exchange next week 

Lead stories 

S. Korea to open carbon trading exchange next week 
By Kim Eun-jung – Yonhap
South Korea will open a carbon trading system next week after years of delay, but the road ahead remains bumpy due to resistance from the business community and weak confidence in the nascent program.

Global carbon market to reach record volumes by 2017
Commodities Now
The value of the global carbon market grew by 15 percent during 2014 to 45 billion euros, according to the latest analysis from the Point Carbon team at Thomson Reuters. 
***LB: Also in this story “Higher prices in the European emissions trading scheme (EU ETS) and steady liquidity and prices in the North American markets were the main reasons for the increasing value of carbon markets. In terms of trading activity, however, the traded volume shrank by 17 percent to 7.7 billion (Gt) in 2014.”

EU Carbon Market Has First Volume Drop Amid Supply Cut
By Mathew Carr – Bloomberg
Buying and selling of European Union carbon allowances on ICE Futures Europe declined for the first time last year after the bloc began withholding supply to reduce a surplus that’s built up since 2008.

Shanghai companies launch 200 mln yuan carbon fund 
Two Shanghai-based companies launched a 200 million yuan ($32 mln) fund on Wednesday to invest in projects that generate carbon credits for China’s fledgeling carbon market.

Paris climate talks the most significant task ahead of us in 2015 
By Andrew Simms – The Guardian
This year’s almost mythic, defining task is to roll the boulder of a new climate agreement uphill to Paris.

Businesses urged to make resource efficiency their New Year’s resolution
By James Murray – BusinessGreen
As households and offices across the UK prepare to dispose of their Christmas trees and decorations today, businesses at opposite ends of the country are being urged to prioritise resource efficiency efforts throughout 2015.

Climate change groups split on fossil fuel divestment
By Pilita Clark – Financial Times 
A rift is emerging among investors in some of the world’s biggest energy companies over a global campaign that aims to combat climate change by making fossil fuels as unpopular as tobacco.

Sen. Schumer lays out battle over Keystone pipeline
By Rebecca Kaplan – CBS News
Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-New York, said Democrats have enough votes to support the president if he vetoes a bill to begin construction on the Keystone XL pipeline.

Tribes, activists protest Keystone permit in SD
By Laura Barron-Lopez – The Hill
A coalition of landowners, tribal leaders, and activists are protesting the Keystone XL oil pipeline’s route through South Dakota this week.


Defense, National Security & Climate Change Symposium
January 7-8, 2015
Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, Washington DC

2015 Climate Leadership Conference
ACCO, EPA, The Climate Registry, C2ES
February 23-25, 2015
Ritz-Carlton Pentagon City (Arlington, VA) 


Entrepreneurs Find Ways To Make Money From Carbon Emissions 
By Christopher Joyce – NPR (Audio)
President Obama in September set a formidable goal for American industry and agriculture — reduce greenhouse gases by a quarter in 10 years. But several states are ahead of the game.

Feds want ‘zero-energy’ building standards
By Timothy Cama – The Hill
The Department of Energy (DOE) wants regulators and the private sector to agree on standards for zero-energy buildings.

DMRC comes under UN’s Clean Development Mechanism 
Z. News,
The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) has been registered as the world’s first transport sector project under the Programme of Activities (PoA) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), enabling it to quantify climate change benefit from all metro operations in India, a statement said today.

Natural gas / coal 

UK loaned £1.7bn to foreign fossil fuel projects despite pledge
By Adam Vaughan – The Guardian
The UK government has provided well over a billion pounds in loans to fossil fuel projects around the world despite a pledge to withdraw financial support from such schemes, an analysis of loans made by the UK’s export credit agency has revealed.


US relaxing of Chinese solar import tariffs ‘a step in the right direction’
A group of US solar firms has welcomed proposals to lower tariffs imposed on Chinese solar imports as “a step in the right direction” for the industry.  

Utilities Fight For Revenue Lost To Solar Power
By Dan Boyce and Lauren Sommer – NPR (Audio) 
Solar energy had a banner year in 2014, but as more U.S. households make their own electricity, they’re paying electric utilities less. Utility companies across the nation are fighting back.

UK wind power smashes annual output record
By James Murray – BusinessGreen
Trade association RenewableUK has seized on new data from National Grid revealing the country’s wind energy sector smashed its previous annual power generation record during 2014.

Clean tech 

Tesla charges up Roadster 3.0 with 400 mile range
By Will Nichols – BusinessGreen
Tesla has updated its Roadster electric sports car with a new battery enabling it to drive up to 400 miles on a single charge.


EU fish discard ban comes into force
The UK has hailed the first step towards a full ban on the controversial practice of fish “discards” whereby fishing vessels tip unwanted fish back into the sea.


As Louisiana’s marshes erode, so does the Houma Indians way of life
By Stell Simonton – Al Jazeera America
Streams of oil slid into the bayous of southeastern Louisiana after the Deepwater Horizon explosion in 2010, damaging the marsh grasses, the wildlife and the livelihood of the 17,000-member Houma tribe.

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