First Word

Exchange CEO Series – Asian Opportunity: CME Group’s Phupinder Gill says Asia is the place to be

Exchanges have never faced more challenges and opportunities than they do today.

John Lothian News sat down with six exchange CEOs at the 2014 FIA Boca Conference to talk about their views on four main topics: competition, regulation, growth and technology. Phupinder Gill, CEO of CME Group, said that regulation will continue to define the competition and industry framework for the foreseeable future and rising global demand for existing and new products, particularly from Asia will drive growth.

“The competitive landscape, as it stands now, is going to be largely dictated by where the regulatory landscape takes us,” Gill said. “As exchanges with a global footprint start to think about how the world might evolve, you have to take into account a few things – what the impact of Dodd-Frank is, the finalization of the SEF rules, how MIFID and EMIR work themselves out and implications for infrastructure providers such as ourselves. The trick for us is to make the experience for our client base as seamless as we possibly can.”

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Lead Stories

George Osborne is preparing to kill off Britain’s renewable energy revolution
Ashley Seager – The Guardian
George Osborne quietly moved to kill off Britain’s renewable revolution in Wednesday’s budget as he stealthily enacted David Cameron’s rumoured call to his cabinet to kill off the “green crap”.
With such stealth that it went almost entirely unspotted by environmentalists and journalists, who were busy focusing on his move to reduce fossil-fuel energy costs for big business, Osborne at a stroke abolished a key tax break that has attracted hundreds of millions of pounds of private money to help build Britain’s green energy future.

The U.S. Energy Chief on Gas Exports, Russia, and the Keystone Pipeline
Matthew Philips – BloombergBusinessweek
In a wide-ranging discussion with U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz at Bloomberg’s Washington office on March 21, Moniz acknowledged what many observers have already deduced: U.S.-Russia relations are “under strain,” and yes, “everything in terms of the relationship is going to be reevaluated.”

Obama administration grants approval for more US natural gas exports
Jennifer A. Dlouhy – Fuel Fix
As pressure builds on the Obama administration to speed up approvals of plans to sell U.S. natural gas overseas, the Energy Department on Monday authorized exports from a proposed Oregon terminal.
The Jordan Cove LNG Terminal in Coos Bay, Ore. is the sixth project to win a coveted license to export liquefied natural gas to countries that don’t have free-trade agreements with the United States. If built, it would be the first new export project on the West Coast.

Supreme Court Rejects Arch Coal Challenge To EPA Powers On Permits
Brent Kendall – The Wall Street Journal
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday dealt a setback to Arch Coal Inc., refusing to consider whether the Environmental Protection Agency exceeded its powers when it retroactively withdrew parts of a permit the company had secured for a large mountaintop coal mine in West Virginia.

EPA budget proposal signals major changes ahead for state regulators
Jean Chemnick – E&E
President Obama has packed cash for state air regulators in his U.S. EPA budget proposal, pointing to a leading role for states in shaping rules for curbing greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants.
The fiscal 2015 proposal would provide $24.3 million to help states prepare for the climate rule — offering $19.8 million in Clean Air Act grants for writing implementation plans and $4.5 million for greenhouse gas permitting, including the collection of emissions data.

Lawmakers urge renewal of wind energy tax credits
Timothy Cama – The Hill
A group of 144 members of the Congress sent letters Friday urging their colleagues to renew tax credits that help the wind energy industry.
The members want credits for investment in renewable energy technology and production of electricity to be renewed. Both credits expired at the end of 2013.

[Ohio] GOP may freeze ‘green’ standards
Dan Gearino – The Columbus Dispatch
Get ready to hear a lot about hitting the “pause button” on the state’s benchmarks for renewable energy and energy efficiency.
Ohio Senate Republicans are putting together a plan that would freeze the annual targets at current levels while a special panel studies the issue.

[Kansas] Senate panel advances bill to repeal renewable energy standards
Bryan Lowry – The Wichita Eagle
Supporters of wind energy say the industry is under attack by the Legislature, pointing to a bill that would eliminate renewable energy standards for utility companies as evidence.
The Senate Utilities Committee approved a bill on Thursday that would repeal the state’s renewable portfolio standards, better known as RPS to supporters and critics. The standards, passed in 2009, mandate that electricity suppliers get 20 percent of their energy from renewable sources by 2020.

Climate change to disrupt food supplies, brake growth: U.N. draft
Alister Doyle – Reuters
Global warming will disrupt food supplies, slow world economic growth and may already be causing irreversible damage to nature, according to a U.N. report due this week that will put pressure on governments to act.

China Smog Is Economic, Regional Health Problem, WHO Chief Says
China’s air pollution is a regional health issue and impacts the economy in terms of foreign investment and talent retention, the United Nation’s health agency chief said.

China premier says environment protection will spur growth
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said on Sunday that efforts to improve the country’s environment would create new business opportunities, state news agency Xinhua reported.

Newedge Adds to Energy Desk
Press Release (Newedge)
Newedge, a global leader in multi-asset brokerage and clearing, today announced the appointment of Edward Kevelson as Head of US OTC Energy. Based in New York, he will report to Robert Vujtech, Global Head of Energy.


Navigating the American Carbon World (NACW) 2014
March 26-28, 2014
San Francisco, California

GLOBE 2014
13th Biennial Conference and Trade Fair on Business and Sustainability
March 26-28, 2014
Vancouver, British Columbia

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


China’s Shenzhen says carbon market had 10 pct surplus in first year
Kathy Chen and Stian Reklev – Reuters
Companies covered by the carbon emissions trading scheme in China’s fast growing city of Shenzhen saw a surplus of 3 million permits in the first year of the market, vice mayor Tang Jie said, meaning around 10 percent of the allowances were unused.

Rio Tinto Pushes for Carbon Capture & Storage Technologies, Slams Government’s Too Much Focus on Renewable Energy
Vittorio Hernandez – International Business Times
Mining giant Rio Tinto (ASX: RIO) finds the current climate change policy debate too idealistic and over focused on renewable energy. Rio Energy Division Chief Harry Kenyon-Slaney is pushing instead for the Australian government to place more investment in clean technologies such as carbon capture and storage.

Few thrilled about low-carbon car support scheme
Kim Se-jeong – Korea Times
No one disputes how much the automobile industry means for Korea. Automobile exports helped the country realize its “miraculous” growth, and still plays a key role in contributing to the economy.
As the country struggles to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the face of climate change, people have high expectations that the auto industry will do more to help reduce CO2 emissions.

Natural Gas/Coal

Europe doesn’t need America’s fracked natural gas
Dean Baker – Al Jazeera America
In the wake of the Russian takeover of Crimea, there have been a number of calls for weaning Europe from dependence on Russian natural gas. Some have suggested that Europe would abandon environmental restrictions on drilling for oil and gas to increase domestic production. To help, the U.S. would continue to massively increase production of oil and gas as well as its capacity to liquefy natural gas and transport it to Europe.

Carbon Tax Freeze to Extend U.K. Coal Profits, New Energy Says
Alessandro Vitelli and Rachel Morison – Bloomberg
U.K. coal-fed power stations will gain an extra year of profitability after the government froze a carbon dioxide emissions tax designed to help fight global warming, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

China to Figure Among World’s Largest LNG Importers
M Rochan – International Business Times
China could become the world’s top liquefied natural gas (LNG) importers within the next six years, with volumes close to the current import levels for Japan, the world’s largest LNG consumer.
The world’s second largest economy is expected to import up to 110 billion cubic metres (bcm) of LNG in 2018, from 52 bcm at present. By comparison, Japan imported 118 bcm of natural gas in 2013, according to Thomson Reuters Point Carbon data.

Coal leaves deep, wide wake in West Virginia
Kimberly Johnson – Al Jazeera America
Trucks laden high with coal lurch and careen into every bend as they barrel down WV Route 3, slipping past a nondescript tawny brick building flanking the tight mountain road in this rural hamlet. The old brick community center, still outfitted with hard-backed restaurant booths, is now headquarters to a homegrown revolution, fighting to loosen the grip of coal.


Nordex Estimates Record $2.2 Billion Orders From European Demand
Nicholas Brautlecht – Bloomberg
Nordex SE sees orders rising to as high as a record 1.6 billion euros ($2.2 billion) on demand for wind turbines from Europe including Germany and France.

NEC to Buy A123’s Grid Energy Storage Business From Wanxiang
Chisaki Watanabe – Bloomberg
NEC Corp. (6701), a Japanese maker of computers and telecommunications equipment, will acquire the grid energy storage business of A123 Systems LLC from China’s Wanxiang Group Corp. for about $100 million.

Samsung, Pattern Get $850 Million Canada Wind-Farm Loan
Ehren Goossens – Bloomberg
Samsung C&T Corp. (000830), Pattern Energy Group Inc. and Capital Power Corp. (CPX) started construction on a 270-megawatt wind farm in Canada after arranging $850 million in financing.

Ohio coal-price case could leave consumers out of luck
Kathiann M. Kowalski – Midwest Energy News
A case before the Ohio Supreme Court could leave the state’s ratepayers with no way to recover unreasonable utility overcharges.
American Electric Power-Ohio is challenging an order requiring it to credit customers for $35 million in excess coal costs. In another case just last month, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled that AEP could keep $368 million in past overcharges.


World’s two largest water and energy organisations team up to highlight the water-energy nexus in celebration of World Water Day
Press Release (World Energy Council)
he World Energy Council (WEC) and World Water Council (WWC) announce that they have joined forces to bring the issue of the water-energy nexus to the fore in the run up to the 7th World Water Forum, to be staged in Daegu, Korea from 12 to 17 April 2015.

Weekend in Pictures: World Water Day, Better Access in East Timor
Sara Schonhardt – The Wall Street Journal
World Water Day was marked over the weekend with public gatherings, online campaigns and poignant pictures of the lengths people go to in some communities to access fresh water. The United Nations designated March 22 as World Water Day back in 1993 as a way to raise awareness about the importance of clean water and to promote better management of the world’s water resources.

Ohio PUC may strip hydro plant of renewable eligibility
A large hydropower facility owned by Exelon and LS Power could lose its renewable status in Ohio when the Public Utilities Commission convenes in Columbus on March 26.


Intelligent Energy Gets $63 Million From Singapore for Expansion
Louise Downing – Bloomberg
Intelligent Energy Holdings Plc, a U.K. fuel-cell manufacturer that works with Suzuki Motor Corp., received $63 million from Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund to expand in consumer electronics.

Study on element californium could change ballgame on radioactive waste
Groundbreaking work by a team of chemists on a fringe element of the periodic table could change how the world stores radioactive waste and recycles fuel.
The element is called californium—Cf if you’re looking at the Periodic Table of Elements—and it’s what Florida State Professor Thomas Albrecht-Schmitt, the lead researcher on the project, calls “wicked stuff.”

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