Affordable Energy News for Friday, June 2

Affordable Energy News for Friday, June 2

Paul Wells: Donald Trump changes the climate game

This won’t be a popular thing to say, but what the heck: a lot of what Donald Trump said on Thursday about measures to contain carbon emissions is true. Climate action imposes certain costs today against a hope of staved-off catastrophe in the future. Many of those costs are borne in areas of heavy industry or natural-resource extraction. Even if cost across a society is low, or there’s a net benefit across a society, the cost to some segments of the society is real. – Maclean’s


Lawrence Solomon: Canadians should be grateful to Trump for killing the Paris climate deal

The repercussions of President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement will be profound and positive — for the global environment, for the global economy, and especially for Canada, which stands to be one of the biggest winners of all. The Paris accord always was a sham. But though it did gull a large segment of the public into thinking the countries of the world had made some grand bargain to which they must adhere, giving politicians new justifications for taxing the public through carbon policies. Canada’s left-leaning politicians, led by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, have especially leapt at this opportunity. – National Post


Terence Corcoran: Trump calls out the global-control agenda of the Paris deal, but Canada remains oblivious

On Thursday, the Paris agreement crashed as U.S. President Donald Trump announced: “We are getting out.” Canada embraced the Paris agreement in 2015, committing to a new carbon-emissions target of 30-per-cent below 2005 by 2030. The targets will not be met under current policies. Should Canada now join the United States by withdrawing from Paris with a view to renegotiating a new global climate protocol? Nobody in Canada will want to entertain such drastic action today. It would mean facing the wrath of the environmental organizations. – National Post 


Bjorn Lomborg: A path forward after the Paris climate agreement

Like the Kyoto Protocol before it, the drastically over-hyped Paris climate treaty has fallen victim to political and economic reality. Now that President Donald Trump has officially pulled the United States from the accord, it is time to declare the entire Kyoto-Paris approach to global warming dead and buried. – Globe & Mail 


Trump pulls U.S. from Paris climate accord, raising challenges for Canada

In a news conference at the White House Rose Garden on Thursday, Donald Trump slammed the 195-country accord as a “bad deal for America,” saying it would force the country to abandon its world-leading reserves of coal and would create job losses in the coal, oil and natural gas industries and in the manufacturing sector. “So we’re getting out,” he said. “But we’ll start to negotiate and we will see if we can get a deal that’s fair. And if we can, that’s great. And if we can’t, that’s fine.” – Globe & Mail 


U.S. withdrawal from climate change deal will hurt N.B.: economists

The U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Agreement, a climate change accord signed by 195 countries in 2015, will hurt New Brunswick’s heavy industries, says University of New Brunswick honorary research professor of economics David Morrell. Trump’s decision is bad news for New Brunswick’s heavy industries, which will now face a competitive disadvantage, said Morrell. It will likely mean heavy industry competitors across the border will no longer have to deal with carbon pricing and other “green” fees. The province is currently working on a carbon plan to meet the federal government’s demand that all provinces have one by next year. Green Party of New Brunswick leader David Coon disagreed, saying that the U.S. withdrawal won’t impact climate change action in New Brunswick. – The Telegraph Journal


McKenna “deeply disappointed” in U.S. decision to pull out of Paris

President Donald Trump’s decision to pull out of the Paris climate-change agreement is disappointing, but the world is marching inexorable towards a greener future with or without the United States, says Canada’s environment minister. Catherine McKenna was responding to news that the U.S. is pulling out of the landmark 190-country agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, although the president says the U.S. is willing to try to negotiate its re-entry, under better terms. – The Chronicle Herald


European leaders: climate change deal can’t be renegotiated

Top European leaders pledged Thursday to keep fighting against global warming as President Donald Trump announced he was pulling out of the Paris climate accord, but they rejected his suggestion that the deal could later be renegotiated. The leaders of France, Germany and Italy said in a joint statement that they regretted the United States’ decision to withdraw from the accord, but affirmed “our strongest commitment” to implement its measures and encouraged “all our partners to speed up their action to combat climate change.” – The Chronicle Herald 


Ontario could benefit if U.S. dumps Paris agreement, says Green leader

Pulling out of the Paris climate agreement would be an economic "loser" for the U.S., said Ontario Green Party leader Mike Schreiner, but their loss may be Ontario's gain. – CBC News 


Trump’s decision on the Paris accord and what it means for the oilpatch

An interesting thing happened after U.S. President Donald Trump announced he was pulling the United States out of the Paris climate pact. The stock markets, which were nearing the end of their day, popped up, with the Dow Jones, S&P 500 and Nasdaq all closing at all-time highs. U.S. oil shares were higher, no surprise there; but so were Canadian energy stocks. – CBC News 


“Red meat to the base”: Trump scores points with supporters by rejecting climate deal

Had President Donald Trump decided to keep the U.S. in the Paris climate accord, it would have been a slap in the face to the very people who put him in office, says Republican strategist Ford O'Connell. Instead, the president said the U.S. was "getting out." And he delivered the line that was music to the ears of his political base: "I was elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris." – CBC News


Choosing U.S. over Alberta and Sask: Apache sells Canadian oil assets to Cardinal for $330M

U.S. oil and gas producer Apache Corp is selling Canadian light oil assets to Canada’s Cardinal Energy Ltd to focus on high-growth areas like the Permian basin shale play, an Apache spokesman said on Thursday. The $330-million cash deal includes the House Mountain assets in Alberta and Apache’s share of the Midale and Weyburn oil assets in southeast Saskatchewan, which together produce 5,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd). Apache becomes the latest international oil firm to sell Canadian operations in favour of concentrating on U.S. shale plays. This year alone international oil majors including ConocoPhillips and Marathon Oil Corp have sold off $22.5-billion of Canadian assets.Financial Post



Tim Harper: How hard will Trudeau push to get the Trans Mountain pipeline built in B.C.?

Justin Trudeau clearly has the constitutional right to push forward on a major pipeline expansion on the British Columbia coast. We may yet see how much political capital the prime minister is willing to spend in proceeding with his approval of Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain expansion that would transport bitumen from Alberta to tankers in Burnaby. He would have to buck the opposition of British Columbia’s soon-to-be-installed NDP government, backed by the Green party, and there would be major ramifications for the federal Liberals’ climate change bona fides, their pledge of Indigenous reconciliation, the future of Trudeau ally Rachel Notley in Alberta, even the future of the federal NDP. It’s hard to see Trudeau going to the ramparts to support a pipeline that faces opposition from a B.C. NDP premier, John Horgan, and a number of Indigenous communities. – Toronto Star


Notley stands up for climate change plan and Kinder Morgan pipeline

“When we make a promise to the world, we keep it,” Notley said in a video statement distributed through social media on Thursday, shortly after Trump confirmed the U.S. would withdraw from the international agreement aimed at lowering worldwide carbon emissions. “As the United States pulls back from its global climate change commitments, I want people to know, in Alberta we remain committed to ours.” The Notley government’s climate initiative includes a broad-based carbon tax, a cap on oilsands emissions and an accelerated phase-out of coal-fired electricity in the province. – Calgary Herald


Big businesses want to nix climate change from regulator’s Energy East review

Canada's largest corporations want to stop a federal panel from investigating how a cross-country oil pipeline would contribute to global warming. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce and other industry stakeholders raised their objections in a series of letters sent to Canada's pipeline regulator, the National Energy Board (NEB), over the past few weeks. The complaints are the latest in a saga of controversies that have plagued the Calgary-based TransCanada Corp.'s Energy East oil pipeline, the largest project of its kind ever to be proposed in North America. – National Observer


B.C. NDP Leader John Horgan calls on BC Hydro not to finalize Site C contracts

NDP Leader John Horgan has advised BC Hydro not to sign any new contracts on the divisive Site C hydroelectric dam project. The $8.8-billion dam will be the third on the Peace River, flooding an 83-kilometre stretch of valley, and local First Nations, landowners and farmers have fiercely opposed the project. In a letter addressed to BC Hydro’s president and CEO, Horgan urges the corporation not to finalize any contracts that do not contain a penalty-free cancellation clause “until a new government has gained the confidence of the legislature.” – National Post


Don Braid: In pipeline dispute, Alberta has ways to get tough with B.C.

B.C. Green Leader Andrew Weaver says Alberta should “get with the program” and move away from oil and gas. OK, let’s do it. The first step would be to stop shipments through the existing Kinder Morgan pipeline to the B.C. Interior and Lower Mainland. Almost 90 per cent of the fuel for Vancouver and the southern coast comes out of that pipeline, either as gasoline or crude to be refined. Kinder Morgan is also a major supplier of gasoline to Kamloops and the wider interior. In a separate operation, the company pipes jet fuel to Vancouver Airport. Imagine the progress if all that was cut off — car-free streets, silent skies, parked transport trucks, happy strolls to pick up the kids and the groceries. Such a blessing! – Calgary Herald


Ontario’s Fair Hydro Act ‘a Ponzi scheme’

Residents of Ontario cannot afford electricity at current rates. Some families have to choose between electricity and food. Industries faced with exorbitant charges are relocating to the U.S. jurisdictions that offer much lower rates are taking jobs with them. An urgent remedy is required. Bill 132 is no remedy. It is a Ponzi scheme. – Toronto Sun 


Maritime electric president promises improvements to P.E.I. service and power system

Maritime Electric is looking to do a better job keeping the lights and heat on across P.E.I. when nasty weather threatens the supply of power. – The Journal Pioneer 


Exports hit record high in April, driven by car, truck, and energy shipments

Statistics Canada says exports hit a record high in April, driven by shipments in cars, trucks and commodities including energy and forestry products. Exports rose to $47.7-billion, a gain of 1.8%, strengthened by a Canadian dollar that was trading between 73 and 75 cents U.S. for the month. Exports of energy products increased to $8.8-billion, up 2.5%. The country’s trade deficit narrowed to $370-million, down from a revised shortfall of $936-million for March. – The Chronicle Herald 


United States

Donald Trump withdraws from Paris Climate Deal despite allies’ opposition

President Donald Trump said Thursday he will withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate accord in an effort to boost the nation’s industry and independence, making a dramatic shift in policy despite intense lobbying from business leaders and close allies. “I was elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris,” Mr. Trump said. – The Wall Street Journal


Trump, Prioritizing Economy Over Climate, Cites Disputed Premises

In making his case for abandoning the Paris climate accord, President Trump characterized the agreement as an economic straitjacket — one that would impose terrible burdens on Americans by shuttering the coal industry, suffocating growth and redistributing jobs and wealth from the United States to its competitors. One thing Mr. Trump did not do in the Rose Garden on Thursday afternoon was question the underlying science behind climate change. Indeed, the president suggested the 194-nation accord did not go far enough in stemming the rise in global temperatures because of greenhouse gas emissions. – The New York Times 


Big businesses — even energy companies — disapprove of Trump's decision to walk away from climate deal

President Donald Trump's decision on Thursday to abrogate a worldwide agreement to curb carbon emissions was met with widespread condemnation by big businesses. – CNBC 


Coal industry officials pledge to maintain projects aimed at reducing carbon dioxide emissions

North Dakota's coal industry won't back down from its carbon capture initiatives despite the country's withdrawal from the U.S. Paris Climate Agreement. "We could have lived with a modified Paris Climate Agreement," said Lignite Energy Council President Jason Bohrer, who indicated the country's removal from the agreement reduces the risk that a future president may use the agreement as an excuse to clamp down on carbon dioxide emissions again. Either way companies are not stopping pursuit of projects that will create an economic benefit for collecting carbon. – Grand Forks Herald


United Kingdom

The European Union needs to meet decarbonisation targets at affordable prices

Nuclear is the only reliable source of low carbon energy, without which decarbonisation targets simply cannot be met at affordable prices, writes Tim Yeo, chairman of the pro-nuclear group New Nuclear Watch Europe (NNWE). The recent International Energy Agency (IEA) report, ‘Tracking Clean Energy Progress’, highlights the extent of the current challenge facing the civil nuclear power sector. In fact, the IEA’s verdict is nothing short of alarming. Without positive action global nuclear capacity will fall 70-90 GW short of the 2025 two degrees scenario target (the target to cut emissions to a level that will keep global warming below 2°C above pre-industrial temperatures), unless annual grid connections double compared to the 2016 rate. The message is clear, the EU and member state governments should revisit their policies to encourage foreign investment in nuclear, not discourage it. – Euractiv



Trump sparks business call for certainty

Industry groups say the United States' withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement makes it even more important that Australian governments stop political point-scoring and focus on a clear long-term climate policy. The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Friday called for a firm commitment from the federal government to clean, affordable and reliable energy that would provide confidence about future prices and policy. – The Australian


Emissions scheme needed for electricity

The Turnbull government is under renewed pressure to establish an emission intensity scheme after two of its agencies said it was their preferred option for affordable, secure and lower emissions electricity generation. In joint advice to the government, the Australian Energy Market Commission and the Climate Change Authority recommended better integration of energy and emissions reduction policies. Doing so would help keep electricity prices as low as possible while improving power system security, they said in a report released on Friday. – The Australian


Malcolm Turnbull's new climate policy

Gas and potentially coal-fired power will remain part of the nation's energy mix under a new "Low Emissions Target" climate change scheme, which the government believes will help Australia meet its Paris accord commitments on cutting carbon emissions while heading off backbench and industry revolts. Unlike an emissions trading scheme, in which every tonne of carbon emitted attracts a price, or an Emissions Intensity Scheme (EIS), where polluting is free to a certain level above which penalties are imposed, the LET would dictate a certain percentage of energy that must be generated from "low emissions" sources. – Australian Financial Review


This is your chance to fight rocketing power bills, Do more than just turning off lights

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is holding an inquiry that focuses on finding out what factors pushed the cost of electricity higher, and what could be done about that. Australians are paying almost twice as much for electricity as they were just 10 years ago, a Grattan Institute report released in March found. “Electricity bills are the number one cost concern for Australian households. High gas prices, the shutdown of older coal-fired generators and the shift to renewables are increasing bills everywhere,” the well-respected research body said in a report that slammed the energy suppliers. – Starts at 60