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  • 26 Apr 2021 7:09 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    TORONTO (26 April) –– On 24 April, the Washington state legislature passed the Climate Commitment Act (Senate Bill 5126), which commits the state to an economy-wide cap-and-invest system to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions starting in 2023. This law makes Washington one of 13 states in the US to launch a carbon market.

    “We warmly welcome this new ambitious state-level market,” said Dirk Forrister, IETA’s President and CEO. “The programme sets a firm emissions reduction target, and covered sources are free to choose how to make the reductions in a market that rewards additional action with economic value. The system is economically efficient for consumers, workers and businesses alike.”

    The state’s new carbon market will help drive emissions to achieve previously-agreed goals of cutting GHGs by 45% below 1990 levels by 2035, and net zero by 2050.

    “2021 is shaping up to be one of the most remarkable years in our collective response to climate change," Forrister added. "China and the UK are launching new emissions markets, New Zealand has revamped its system to set an absolute cap on emissions for the first time, and the voluntary market is growing by leaps and bounds.”

    Washington’s market has been explicitly designed to link to other “allowance-based” markets such as California’s cap-and-trade system or the 11-state Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative in the US northeast.

    “We’re particularly pleased that Washington has recognised the value of program alignment and linked markets, which can offer greater economies of scale and widen the pool of available abatement,” Forrister said.

    “We look forward to playing an active role as the state’s Department of Ecology begins the process of turning legislation into the regulations required to operate the market.”

    BACKGROUND INFORMATION

    Washington’s economy-wide cap-and-invest program covers all industrial facilities, power stations, natural gas suppliers and fuel suppliers that emit more than 25,000 tonnes a year.

    Emissions allowances will be auctioned no more than four times a year, while energy-intensive and trade-exposed installations will receive allocation of free allowances until 2034. Thereafter, these allocations will decline until 2050. 

    Auction proceeds will be transferred to two special accounts, the “Forward Flexible Account” and the “Climate Investment Account”, from where they will be disbursed only for specific, climate-friendly projects.

    The program will begin its first compliance period in 2023, running to the end of 2026. A cap on emissions will be set by the state’s Department of Ecology. Reviews of the system are set to take place in 2027 and 2035.

  • 23 Apr 2021 10:01 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    GENEVA, 23 April - IETA welcomes the enhanced ambition from some of the world’s largest economies and stands ready to assist and participate in the transition to net zero emissions.

    At this week’s Leaders Summit on Climate, President Joe Biden welcomed heads of state from over 40 countries to deliver enhanced climate ambition commitments and reduction targets.  

    The new pledges represent a strong increase in climate ambition, aimed at meeting the Paris Agreement goal of driving the global economy to net zero emissions by the middle of the century.

    The steeper government goals are expected to drive a significant increase in both public and private investment in emissions abatement, and this in turn will increase interest and demand for carbon removals and offsets.

    “This week’s announcements set the stage for a Glasgow success on ramping up climate ambition,” said Dirk Forrister, IETA President and CEO. “We know where national leaders want to go – so now, the focus must turn to how best to deliver it. Our best hope of meeting these goals will be to ramp up our market cooperation and finance to inspire businesses to invest at scale.”

    Several leaders made specific references to the critical role of carbon pricing and use of market mechanisms to help drive down emissions and accelerate the transition. France’s President Macron underlined that the transition to net zero requires a price on carbon, while China’s President Xi confirmed that his country’s emissions market would start trading this year.

    “As markets in Europe, California, Quebec and South Korea are proving, carbon markets can deliver climate targets faster and more effectively than old style command-and-control policies,” Forrister added. “It is encouraging to see China’s commitment to start its carbon market this year, putting its power sector on a course for a cleaner future.”


  • 15 Apr 2021 1:10 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    BRUSSELS/LONDON, 15 April - A coalition of more than 40 industry associations from Europe and the UK has written to the President of the European Commission and the UK Prime Minister, urging them to agree to link the UK’s and Europe’s emissions trading systems (ETS) before this year’s COP26 climate summit.

    After leaving the European Union last year, the UK has introduced its own domestic emissions trading system, designed along very similar principles to the EU ETS.

    “In choosing an ETS over a carbon tax, the UK has shown that carbon markets offer cheaper, more efficient, and legally binding decarbonisation” said Adam Berman, European Policy Director at IETA. 

    “If the UK wants to reach Net Zero, linkage to the EU ETS is key. It will allow emissions reduction targets to be reached more quickly, easily, and at better value. A larger market means a better market with more liquidity, fewer competitive distortions which damage industry, and more decarbonisation opportunities.”

    The coalition pointed out that linking emissions markets requires two key elements: political will and alignment of climate goals.

    “Given the similarities between the UK and EU’s carbon trading regimes, there should be no two emissions trading systems that are easier to link,” the groups said in the letter.

    “The advantages of linkage are clear in terms of liquidity, price discovery, and the ability to attract abatement from across Europe rather than just the UK. It would also create a level playing field in terms of carbon pricing, avoiding competitive distortions, and leading to aligned cost implications for industry across the UK and the European Economic Area (EEA).”

    A linkage would also send a strong political signal ahead of this year’s climate talks, the groups added.

    “Linking the UK and EU ETS ahead of COP 26 would reaffirm the UK and EU as climate leaders, and demonstrate strong advocacy for international carbon markets,” the coalition said. 

    “A linking agreement between the UK and EU would show commitment to Article 6 of the Paris Agreement in a year during which the EU hopes to help finalise the Article 6 framework as a key outcome of COP 26, thus ensuring that the EU can lead by example in respect to the international climate agenda."

    “Linkage will [also] allow the UK to reach Net Zero faster and more cost effectively,” the group said.

    A copy of the letter to Prime Minister Johnson can be found here, and to Commission President von der Leyen here.

  • 27 Jan 2021 8:07 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    GENEVA, 27 January - IETA warmly welcomes today’s publication of the final recommendations of the Task Force on Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets (TSVCM), which can be instrumental in scaling, transparency, accountability and ambition of the global drive to achieve net zero emissions, in line with the ambitious goals of the Paris Agreement and the requirements of IPCC science.

    “We would firstly like to congratulate Mark Carney and Bill Winters for their leadership in driving this important piece of work,” said Dirk Forrister, CEO of IETA. 

    “It’s a powerful initiative because it can encourage large emitters to voluntarily reduce their emissions in support of government mandates and beyond."

    IETA is pleased at the scale of engagement in compiling the report, and notes that there is still much work to be done to bring the TSVCM’s work to a successful conclusion.

    The report supports the goals of increasing global climate ambition even more – and the central role that markets play in achieving the transition to net zero emissions.

    IETA looks forward to engaging with fellow stakeholders in advancing the work on such issues as market governance, standardised contracts and stronger market infrastructure to provide transparency and efficiency to an expanding market. 

    “This work on the Task Force’s implementation plan is essential so that more financial institutions, investment groups and entrepreneurs can build confidence to invest at scale through carbon markets,” Forrister said.

    “We agree that robust standards are essential for net zero, and are pleased that a number of expert consultations are underway by various standards to ensure that they are effective in aligning with Paris goals.”

    As IETA’s Governing Council expressed in its Net Zero vision document last year, saying that it sees “a valuable role for promoting high ambition through voluntary commitments that tap international carbon markets for credits to compensate for emissions that cannot be reduced or avoided.”

    According to IETA’s Net Zero vision, “many companies... may not have sufficient opportunities to reduce, avoid or remove emissions cost-effectively in their operations.”

    Both the voluntary carbon market and the future structures under Article 6 of the Paris Agreement will play a critical role in scaling up such reductions, and this is underpinned by today’s TSVCM report.

    IETA is committed to help deliver a growing and effective voluntary market, aimed at achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement and its net zero vision. We congratulate the TSVCM team on producing this report, and we look forward to collaborating on its implementation.

  • 17 Dec 2020 10:21 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    GENEVA, 17 December - The Council of the International Emissions Trading Association is delighted to announce that it appointed two new Fellows at its Annual General Meeting on 15 December 2020.

    • Kelley Kizzier served as co-chair of the UNFCCC’s Article 6 negotiations during her tenure at the European Commission and now works as Assistant Vice President for International Climate at the Environmental Defense Fund, a position that continues to draw on her deep expertise, contagious enthusiasm and consensus-building skills.

    • Frances Seymour serves as the Distinguished Senior Fellow at the World Resources Institute and has provided years of expert advice on the formation of incentives for forest protection in carbon market designs, building a reputation as a role model for young women who want to be drivers of change by way of environmental leadership.

    “Kelley Kizzier and Frances Seymour are luminaries In the fight against climate change – particularly in bringing insight on innovative policies that scale up action at the time we need it most,” said Dirk Forrister, President and CEO of IETA. 

    Each year, IETA awards honorary fellowships to individuals in recognition of their contributions to developing market-based solutions to climate change and in strengthening the role of the IETA in building the profession.

    Previous nominees as IETA Fellows include leaders such as Christiana Figueres, James Cameron, Joan Macnaughton, John Kilani, Richard Sandor and Anne-Marie Warris. A full list is available here.

    “Often our honorary Fellowships have recognised business achievement in carbon markets, but we also want to highlight successful partners in non-governmental groups – because they play such an essential role in getting the right policies in place so that business can grow while protecting the climate,” Forrister said. “Kelley and Frances continue to inspire us to reach for greater climate ambition, tapping the power of market incentives.”


  • 17 Dec 2020 10:20 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    GENEVA, 17 December - Following its Annual General Meeting (AGM) on 15 December, the International Emissions Trading Association (IETA) is pleased to announce the re-appointment of eight Council members for the coming year.

    The following Members of the Council were re-appointed::

    • Paul Dawson, RWE
    • Lisa DeMarco, DeMarco Allen
    • Mary Grady, American Carbon Registry
    • David Hone, Shell
    • Abyd Karmali, Bank of America
    • Ed Ma, Suncor
    • Rick Saines, Pollination
    • Jonathan Shopley, Natural Capital Partners

    The AGM also confirmed the continuation of Jonathan Grant as Chair and Lisa DeMarco as Vice Chair.

    Full details of our Council and governance can be found at www.ieta.org


  • 15 Dec 2020 11:27 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    GENEVA, 15 December - IETA welcomes the decision by the Executive Board of the Clean Development Mechanism to temporarily extend CDM operations past the end of 2020. This means that projects can continue to operate while negotiators complete the rulebook for Article 6 of the Paris Climate Agreement and decide on the future of the CDM at COP26 in Glasgow next year.

    “The decision offers a lifeline to CDM offset projects around the world,” said Dirk Forrister, President and CEO of IETA. “It brings a degree of clarity that will enable the continued flow of finance to greenhouse gas reduction projects  in the world’s largest crediting system.”

    IETA and other business observer groups have called repeatedly on UNFCCC negotiators to resolve CDM transition issues as part of the decisions on a rulebook for trading provisions of the Paris Climate Agreement. 

    But Article 6 negotiations stalled at COP25 in Madrid last year, adding pressure for resolution at COP26 in Glasgow this year. 

    However, the postponement of COP26 due to the Covid-19 pandemic left international negotiators with no opportunity to resolve the issue before the end of the second commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol on December 31, 2020.

    A dispute arose when three CDM Executive Board members asked for a review of the issue as part of their consideration of requests for extensions of crediting periods for several operating projects. This review process exacerbated uncertainties on the future of the CDM. 

    The dispute threatened the continuation of operating projects and Programmes of Activities (PoAs), which could have led to project suspensions and investment cancellations worth tens of millions of dollars across the public and private sectors.

    IETA, together with several other stakeholders, urged the CDM Executive Board to provide clarity on this issue and to take the necessary interim measures to ensure that, at a minimum, CDM projects and PoAs can continue to operate and issue CERs until a decision is taken on the issue at COP26. 

    The decision by the Board means that clean-energy projects in developing and emerging economies can continue to earn UN-sanctioned offsets by reducing emissions after the Kyoto Protocol’s commitment period ends on 31 December, pending a formal decision at COP26.

    While the temporary fix is not perfect, as it still leaves uncertainty until a decision is taken at COP26, it probably is the best outcome we could have hoped for, considering the limits of CDM EB powers and the current challenges, said Stefano De Clara, IETA’s director of international policy. 

    “We want to thank the CDM EB Chair, EB members  and the Secretariat for their hard work on this issue and we want to congratulate them on this outcome”.

  • 15 Dec 2020 8:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    GENEVA, 15 December – IETA’s GHG Market Report 2020, released today, focuses on long-term climate goals and how to achieve them – kicking off with an introduction by Christiana Figueres on the choices for 2050.

    Vision 2050, available online, includes two carbon market scenarios by Baker McKenzie, a piece by Bill Winters on how the voluntary market can play a role in driving ambition and the latest on net-zero pledges from IETA members. The opening session of today’s European Climate Summit will feature a panel discussion about the report with some of this year’s authors – see the event website to sign up for free.

    Other highlights include how a swathe of government net-zero pledges is pulling the world closer to meeting the Paris Agreement’s goals, how the EU ETS is being changed for the future, and moving from planning to carbon pricing implementation in developing countries. It also includes a series of mini-profiles of innovations by IETA members which are transforming the way things are done, from sustainable farming to green steel, as well as a look at what policies are needed to deliver on these technologies for tomorrow.

    “Decisions taken in this new decade are critical to whether or not we realise our 2050 goals, and this year’s report drills down into some of the issues, such as transparency, accountability and innovation,” says IETA President and CEO Dirk Forrister. “Even despite the chaos and tragedy that COVID-19 has unleashed on the world, governments, business and other stakeholders are doubling down on climate commitments, in recognition that time is running out to make meaningful changes to secure the vision of 2050 we collectively share.”

    The report also looks at how to ensure a just transition in a resource-rich economy, focusing on South Africa, and how to successfully fight back against legal challenges to carbon pricing policies.


  • 14 Dec 2020 11:21 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    LONDON, 14 December - IETA welcomes the announcement by the UK government today that it will launch an emissions trading system (ETS) for domestic industry and power generation from January 1 next year.

    “The announcement of a new UK ETS is a bold step in the right direction toward climate neutrality," said Adam Berman, director of EU Policy at IETA.

    "Choosing a carbon pricing system that can be truly aligned with net-zero sends a strong message that the UK is serious about action on climate change."

    "Emissions trading provides multiple options for strengthening and enhancing price signal. The UK ETS will ensure both flexibility for industry and environmental certainty for policymakers.”

    Britain left the European Union at the start of 2020 and will leave the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) in less than three weeks. IETA has been one of many entities calling on the UK to implement its own carbon market mechanism.

    "The UK has almost two decades worth of experience in emissions trading," Berman said. In choosing an ETS, the government have shown that the UK is willing to build on that experience and lead by example through a market mechanism that is tried and tested as the best route to economy-wide emissions reductions."

    The UK has already issued regulations establishing the structure of the UK ETS, including a cap on emissions each year to 2030, and will complete more preparations in the coming days, according to a government statement.

    "The UK ETS will ensure that decarbonisation occurs where it is cheapest and most efficient, providing a clear and predictable low-carbon pathway for business," Berman said.

    "It also opens up the possibility of linkage to other jurisdictions, which can move the world one step closer to a global carbon pricing system."

    "The Government must now consult on how to increase the ambition of the ETS in line with the UK’s enhanced -68% emissions reductions target for 2030."

    This is likely to take the form of strengthening the mechanisms of the ETS, and possibly extending the system to new sectors. Although the Government has designed a strong ETS, one crucial element is missing and will be required to meet the revised 2030 target; a supply adjustment mechanism. 

    IETA strongly encourages the Government to consider implementing such a mechanism which can reduce surplus allowances if the market becomes oversupplied. This has been shown to be an effective mechanism in the EU’s Emissions Trading System and will be critical to maintaining a robust price signal in the UK ETS.


  • 09 Dec 2020 11:28 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    GENEVA, 9 December - Efforts to increase investments in Natural Climate Solutions (NCS) must recognise the importance of reducing and avoiding emissions from forestry activities, according to a paper published today by the International Emissions Trading Association (IETA).

    The paper highlights the invaluable contribution that reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+) can make to the fight against climate change, alongside efforts to restore and enhance natural ecosystems.

    The International Civil Aviation Organisation’s (ICAO) Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) recently approved two REDD+ standards, Winrock International’s Architecture for REDD+ Transactions (ART) and Verra’s Jurisdictional Nested REDD+ (JNR) framework. This represents the first acceptance of REDD+ standards in a compliance market and is an important moment in the development of REDD+.

    At the same time, NCS is becoming an increasingly large component of the voluntary market. In 2019 forestry and land use represented over 50% of the market by value. With initiatives such as the private sector-led Taskforce on Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets looking to scale the voluntary market by at least 15-fold by 2030, there is an opportunity to direct significant new finance into forest protection.

    IETA’s paper calls for carbon markets to channel finance to all pathways that protect, restore and enhance the ecosystems that draw down and store carbon from the atmosphere. “We need to scale up finance to avoid deforestation – especially tropical deforestation – in a way that contributes to sustainable development goals in forested regions,” said Dirk Forrister, IETA’s CEO. 

    “The preservation of standing natural forests is essential from both an emissions abatement and removals perspective, while simultaneously protecting against negative climate change impacts, preserving the planet’s biodiversity and supporting the livelihoods and well-being of 1.6 billion forest-dependent peoples globally,” the paper asserts.

    The paper points out that many countries have included REDD+ activities as part of their Nationally Determined Contributions to the Paris Agreement, while scenario modelling indicates that dramatic reductions in deforestation are necessary to help achieve the Paris goal of pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

    “Reducing deforestation and the conversion of natural habitats must be prioritised and recognised for its significant climate change mitigation potential in the short to medium term,” said Ellen Lourie, senior policy associate at IETA.

    “If forests are allowed to be destroyed, it won’t be possible to recapture and store the lost carbon in new forests quickly enough to meet the Paris goals.”

    IETA has also published a fact-sheet on Natural Climate Solutions, which you can find here.


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