What a let down! Though the European Commission had originally proposed more ambitious targets, MEPs voted in favor of a watered down deal on aviation emissions. 

Quote of the day

“Without doubt the Commission would of course have preferred and fought for a higher level of ambition, it would’ve been better for Europe’s self-respect and reputation, and even more important, for the climate. But we are where we are.”

EU’s Climate Commissioner Connie Hedegaard in the story “EU fails to curb aviation emissions”.

Lead Stories

EU fails to curb aviation emissions 
MEPs voted in favor of a watered down deal on aviation emissions on 3 April, after the EU Commission backed down from its own proposal a day before.

Wind tax credit survives Senate Finance markup
Laura Barron-Lopez and Timothy Cama, The Hill
The Senate Finance Committee passed its tax extenders package Thursday and wind energy’s production tax credit (PTC) made it into the final bill.
The PTC wasn’t in the first draft unveiled Tuesday, but come Thursday morning, Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Ore) had restored it, drawing approval from renewable energy advocates.

Energy-Saving Company Set for Public Offering
Diane Cardwell, The New York Times 
For decades, regulators, environmental advocates and utilities have struggled to persuade consumers to use less electricity.
Now, a fast-growing company that has shown promising results by rewarding energy misers with smiley faces on their monthly statements is taking its concept to Wall Street with an initial public offering of its stock, set for Friday.

China may sell debt to combat climate change
China Daily
China may sell debt and is considering other ways to raise funds for combating climate change, an official at the country’s top economic planner said on Tuesday. “China is exploring and tapping bond markets,” the official from the National Development and Reform Commission told a three-day climate conference in Beijing.

Wind farms are paid £8.7m in one month to stop turbines
Ben Webster, The Times
Wind farms were paid a record £8.7 million last month to switch off, according to figures that show how an increasing amount of subsidised renewable energy is being wasted.
National Grid made the “constraint payments” to 27 wind farms because it was unable to use their electricity at the time it was generated, the Renewable Energy Foundation said.

Whisky gets greener as Scottish distillers burn waste byproducts
Scotch whisky distillers are burning their unwanted grain byproducts, wood chips and other types of biomass for a source of energy in remote areas of the Highlands, where gas links are scarce and fuel oil is pricey.
***LB: Also in this story ” The production of Scotch whisky has evolved over more than 500 years and is steeped in tradition. It is also a big business, generating 4 billion pounds ($6 billion) a year in exports – a quarter of all Britain’s food and drink sales abroad.”


Solar Summit
Greentech Media’s flagship annual solar conference that focuses on global market trends, relevant technologies and project finance. With sessions on everything from Latin American market dynamics to BOS innovations, Solar Summit attracts high-level decision makers from all areas of the industry.
April 14-16, 2014
Phoenix, Arizona

Minnesota’s Marquee Solar Event
The Midwest Solar Expo is bringing together solar leaders from across the Midwest to advance dialogue on key issues, provide insight on the latest industry trends and best practices, and serve as a nexus between the solar industry and the public.
May 16, 2014
Minneapolis, Minnesota


Can Canada’s worst polluters lead the battle against CO2 emissions?
Marc Gunther,
Canadian oil producers have been pilloried for their role as environmental polluters. But with increased carbon taxes on the horizon, yesterday’s villains may become tomorrow’s heroes.

Entrepreneurs vie to turn heat-trapping gas into a red-hot commodity
Katherine Ling, E&E 
The Energy Department recently hosted a debutante party. Awkward, adolescent companies that capture carbon emissions or convert them into chemicals or fuels nervously gussied up booths and showed off nearly mature technology ready for commercial partners at the agency’s annual Energy Innovation Summit.

Airlines miss EU ETS reporting deadline 
Only five per cent of airlines have complied with an EU deadline to report their 2013 emissions under the EU’s emissions trading system (EU ETS tax), preliminary figures published by the European Commission show.

PG&E Ratepayers Will See $30-40 Climate Credit on April Bill
Kelly O’Mara, KQED
Next month you should see a $30-40 credit on your PG&E bill — thanks to California’s new greenhouse gas regulations. Under the cap-and-trade program, the state’s biggest power companies will be paying $750 million in credits on consumers’ April and October bills.

Natural Gas/Coal

Clean Coal Test: Power Plants Prepare to Capture Carbon
Robert Kunzig, National Geographic
In Juliette, Georgia, Southern Company operates a coal-fired power plant that is the single largest source of planet-warming carbon dioxide emissions in the United States.

Plan to reopen coal-fired power plant draws pollution, economic concerns
Brian Nearing,
An aging coal-fired power plant in the Hudson Valley that appeared headed for the scrap heap may survive under plans filed this week with the state by a Texas-based company and a Swiss global energy conglomerate.

US offers Europe hope on LNG
Ed Crooks, Financial Times
As European buyers look around the world for new sources of liquefied natural gas, the most promising prospects lie in the US. Other possible new developments in places such as east Africa, Canada and Australia face a variety of political and financial challenges.

Asian gas buyers trying to break out of rigid market structure
Meeyoung Cho and Jane Chung, Reuters
Asian gas and power companies are starting to pair up for joint purchases of LNG after more ambitious efforts to form a regional group to win lower prices and less rigid contracts have stalled.
*** LB: Also in this story “Japan, India, South Korea and other Asian gas importers take about 70 percent of global liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports”.

Power Cut Forces Biggest Coal Terminal to Review 2015 Target
A South Africa’s Richards Bay Coal Terminal is reviewing targets for 2015 after a power cut in February forced it to reduce this year’s goal, the head of the world’s largest standalone export facility for the fuel said.


Boeing-built Guam solar plant to generate cheapest power
Boeing Co. is building Guam’s first solar plant, which will help the Pacific island generate electricity more cheaply than from the imported fuel oil and diesel it currently burns.

E.ON hires Citi as advisor for Spanish asset sale -sources
Julien Toyer, Arno Schuetze and Christoph Steitz, Reuters
Germany’s biggest utility E.ON SE has hired Citi to advise it on the sale of its assets in Spain, three people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Jaguar Land Rover flicks switch on UK’s largest rooftop solar system BusinessGreen
Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) has completed the UK’s largest rooftop solar array at its £500m Engine Manufacturing Centre in the West Midlands.

E.ON inks Unipart biomass deal
Manufacturing and logistics firm Unipart has become the latest company to cut its energy costs and carbon emissions by deploying renewable heat technology, after it inked a deal with E.ON to install a large scale biomass boiler at its Oxford head offices.

Report slams biomass sector, dubbing it ‘the new coal’
Daniel Lippman, E&E 
While the biomass energy sector has been labeled as green renewable energy, a report released today says burning scrap lumber and wood debris and agricultural waste products to create electricity is producing lots of air pollution and carbon dioxide emissions.

Clean Tech

Energy Catalyst fund aims to spark clean tech innovations with £25m fund
The government yesterday officially launched the UK’s new Energy Catalyst fund, confirming that it will seek to plough £25m of funding into early stage technology companies working to tackle the energy “trilemma” by providing affordable, secure and low carbon energy.


Ban Ki-Moon: EU must agree to a 2030 climate package in June 
The UN’s secretary-general has called on EU leaders to set an example and agree on an ambitious 2030 target at a Council Summit in June, that can be taken to a UN conference in Lima three months later, and shape a global, legally-binding treaty by the end of 2015.
***LB: Also in this story “Under pressure from Poland and other east European states, the bloc’s heads of state failed to agree the package at a Council meeting last month, setting an October deadline for reaching consensus instead. Ki-Moon blamed “political situations like the Ukraine, and the EU’s dependency on gas and oil energy,” for the impasse.”

Private investment in sustainable economy set to reach $10tn by 2020
Charlotte Malone, blue and green tomorrow
By the end of the decade, private investment in the green and sustainable economy will almost double, reaching $10 trillion (£6 trillion), according to new research. The scale of investment by 2020 will reduce the costs of green technologies and drive innovation. 

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