EU carbon market reform hits rocks ahead of crucial vote

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EU: Plans to reform Europe’s struggling carbon market received a fresh blow on Wednesday with the largest party in the European Parliament, the European People’s Party, announcing that most of its 265 MEPs would vote against “backloading plans” in a crucial vote next Tuesday.

MEPs will decide whether to correct the vast oversupply of carbon credits by holding back more than 900m emissions allowances from the next phase of the scheme. It was hoped this would help lift the flagging carbon price. (European Voice)

It is looking an increasingly difficult task for the European Commission to find sufficient support for its planned reforms to the carbon market (Source: Wikimedia/Azla)

EU: The EU’s chief scientific advisor has given the green light to shale gas in Europe. “I am in favour of producing shale gas, particularly for safety reasons, and to reduce gas prices. In the United States, which is a big producer of shale gas, the price of gas is four times less than in Europe,” said Anne Glover.

Climate action Commissioner Connie Hedegaard recently downplayed the potential for shale gas to make an impact in Europe comparable to that in the US. (EurActiv)

Australia: Climate change Minister Greg Combet has said climate change is impacting the country now and is no longer a problem just for future generations. “Australia has always had floods, bushfires and droughts. The problem is, these events are becoming more frequent and more severe, and record breaking weather is becoming more common-place,” he said. (IPS)

Arctic: Oil majors Statoil and ConocoPhillips have joined Shell in delaying their drilling efforts in the Arctic territory until 2014, according to Greenpeace, which has campaigned against exploration in the region. (Greenpeace)

USA: A Texas Republican Congressman has cited the biblical flood of the Old Testament as evidence that manmade climate change does not exist. “I would point out that if you are a believer in the Bible, one would have to say the great flood was an example of climate change. That certainly wasn’t because mankind had overdeveloped hydrocarbon energy,” Joe Barton told a congressional hearing yesterday. (The Guardian)

Iran: The Iranian government has assured the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) that there was no damage to its Bushehr Nuclear Power Plant following Tuesday’s earthquake. The plant was 91km from the quake. (IAEA)


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