Chinese HCFC Quotas Released

China assigned hydrochlorofluorocarbon production quotas to 40 businesses for 2014 and released details on 2013 quotas in compliance with the Montreal Protocol November 25 and December 5, respectively.

Eurostat Resource Efficiency Scorecard Released

The Eurostat Resource Efficiency Scorecard was released December 6, and data cover a range of topics from resource consumption to soil erosion for all EU countries. Resource productivity, represented as economic output per unit of energy, was another category. The U.K., Luxembourg, and the Netherlands had the highest resource productivity while Bulgaria, Romania, and Latvia had the lowest.

Attention to Risk Needed

Chief Science Advisers to the European Union and United Kingdom said during the Society of Risk Analysis December 9 that governments need to pay more attention to perceptions of environmental risks and improve their related communications if they want resources and funding to be focused on the most important risks.

EBRD to Shun Coal-Fired Plant Funding

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development voted December 10 on a new investment strategy that will do away with most assistance for coal-fired power plants, providing funding only in rare and exceptional circumstances. The World Bank and European Investment Bank already have announced plans to shun most coal investments. In November, Britain joined a U.S. initiative to do so.

European Parliament Approves ETS Backloading Plan

The European Parliament approved the Emissions Trading System Backloading plan December 10. 900 million carbon allowances will be delayed under the plan, which was informally agreed to by Parliament and European Council members in November.

Mexican Congress Approves Oil Investment Proposal

The lower house of the Mexican Congress voted December 12 to open the state-run oil industry to private investment. The proposal was part of President Enrique Pena Nieto’s first-year reform effort and must be approved by 17 of the 31 states. The oil industry was nationalized in 1938, and Petroleos Mexicanos has a monopoly.

EU Fails to Cap Biofuels

European Union energy ministers failed to approve a compromise proposal December 12 to limit crop-based biofuels to seven percent of an EU 2020 goal to have renewable energy provide ten percent of all transportation fuels. The proposal came following concerns about the biofuel’s negative impact on climate change and food prices.

Sustainable Energy Index Released

The World Economic Forum released the Global Energy Architecture Performance Index for 2014 December 13 of the global transition to more sustainable energy. The top ten countries on the index, mostly members of the European Union and Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, used low-carbon energy sources for 41 percent of their energy supply, compared to a global average of 28 percent.

Global Climate Investment Index Published

The Asset Owners Disclosure Project released a report December 13 charging that global asset owners are failing to manage the risks that climate change poses to the value of their portfolios, potentially resulting in smaller returns and lower retirement savings.