International Climate Efforts

COP 24 negotiations culminated in the 2018 “Paris Rulebook” (“Rulebook”) but fell short of resolving all issues implementing the 2015 Paris Agreement (“Agreement”).  In 2019 and subsequent years, we expect dynamic debates between negotiators on at least five key issues:

  1. How to implement voluntary market mechanisms under Article 6 of the Agreement,
  2. How to increase collective ambition through each country’s voluntary pledges,
  3. How to recognize the IPCC 1.5◦C Report’s scientific findings,
  4. Setting a new climate financing goal for developed nations to meet, and
  5. Continuing discussions on “loss and damage” issues for vulnerable nations.


Continue Reading COP 24 Round-Up Part Two: Looking Ahead from Katowice

On December 15, 2018, climate negotiators in Katowice, Poland reached agreement on a “Paris Rulebook” (“Rulebook”) which will implement the Paris Agreement (“Agreement”).  Reactions to the ambitiousness of the Rulebook have been mixed.  Although negotiators found some common ground on specific reporting and transparency rules, they could not reach consensus on implementing more ambitious voluntary market mechanisms, including the linking of global carbon markets.

This is the first of a two-part series discussing the results of the COP 24 summit.  Part Two will address unresolved issues for climate negotiations in 2019 and future years.  
Continue Reading COP 24 Round-Up Part One: The Paris Rulebook

The Trump Administration will take office intent on reversing many Obama Administration policies. Although the Trump Administration’s publicly released 100-day plan does not announce a new energy policy, campaign promises and priorities of the Republican-controlled Congress suggest a number of early initiatives that will impact the power sector.  Moreover, the Trump transition team for the Department of Energy signaled a variety of potential energy policy priorities in requesting information from the outgoing Obama Administration.  The impacts of these regulatory and legislative initiatives will need to be evaluated against the backdrop of market, technology, international, and consumer driven dynamics that are transforming the power sector independent of federal law and policy.  The Covington Energy Group will be watching closely the new Administration’s and Congress’ initiatives and evaluating their significance in altering or reinforcing the transformative changes sweeping the power sector.  Below, we identify the more prominent expected initiatives from the new Administration.
Continue Reading Watching for Initiatives from the Trump Administration and Congress Affecting the Power Sector

Europe is stepping up enforcement of its climate change rules against foreign airlines.  Recently, a Belgian authority competent for the enforcement of the EU Emissions Trading System (“ETS”) on airlines flying to and from Brussels, collected a fine of €1.4 million.  The fine was imposed on Saudi Arabian Airlines for failing to surrender emission allowances. 

The African continent is revolutionizing itself as the place where no infrastructure is no problem.  This began in the telecommunications field:  Africa lacks a robust system of landlines, which traditionally enable better access to desktop computers, online services, and financial institutions.  But the emergence of cellular telephony has allowed individuals across Africa to bypass

After months of speculation and mounting pressure, it’s finally here: the government of Nigeria has released the long-awaited PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) forensic audit of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), the country’s national oil company. It’s not often that the release of a highly technical accounting report makes the headlines—much less grabs the attention of

The new year may only be a few months old, but 2015 has already ushered in a number of exciting developments in the solar power space in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Solar projects coming online across the continent and more in the pipeline. Riding the momentum of 2014 in which it brought online the largest photovoltaic (PV)