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California needs forests to fight climate change, but they are going up in smoke By Reuters

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By Nichola Groom

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – California’s record wildfires pose a problem for the state’s plan to use its forests to help offset climate-warming emissions.

It is unclear how much California’s plan for becoming carbon-neutral by 2045 depends on its forests. But as climate change fuels increasingly frequent and intense blazes, any plan that relies on keeping forests healthy could be frustrated.

California’s climate-change agenda is among the most ambitious in the United States, but thanks to wildfires, forests are “part of the problem, not part of the solution,” Edie Chang, a deputy executive director at the California Air Resources Board (CARB), told Reuters.

With global efforts to cut the use of fossil fuels falling short of what is needed to avoid the worst effects of climate change, scientists believe capturing climate pollution already emitted will be necessary to limit warming. Maintaining the health of forests, which suck up and store carbon, are among those solutions.

The most populous U.S. state has suffered five of its six largest wildfires in history this year as heat waves and dry-lightning sieges coincided with drier conditions that climate scientists blame on global warming.

This year, a record 4 million acres in California have burned, releasing decades of stored carbon into the atmosphere. That amounts to more than 200 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, assuming the scorched acres held similar amounts of carbon as acres burned in previous years, said Emily McGlynn, an environmental economist at the University of California, Davis.

That is equivalent to nearly half the state’s annual human-caused emissions.

And that is just for 2020.

Between 2001 and 2014, California’s forests and natural lands lost an amount of carbon equivalent to 511 million metric tons of CO2 emissions, McGlynn said – roughly the same amount emitted by the state’s transportation sector over three years, according to data from the state’s Air Resources Board.

Wildfires accounted for three-quarters of that carbon release from forests, while logging and tree pruning as part of forest management made up the rest, state records show. While some amount of fire is needed for maintaining healthy forests, scientists say the size and frequency of recent fires may be pushing natural systems out of balance https://www.reuters.com/article/idUSKCN26C30W.

“California is kind of ground zero for some of the most extreme climate impacts,” McGlynn said.

FORESTS OFFSET EMISSIONS

Alarmed by the scale of destruction, California Governor Gavin Newsom this week asked state agencies to craft policies toward storing more carbon on natural lands, calling that “a critical part of the climate change conversation.”

The state next year will implement changes to its cap-and-trade program that could boost the market price for carbon credits and spark more private investment in improving forests in California.

Under the cap-and-trade scheme large emitters face a carbon limit and can buy allowances if they exceed it. Companies can currently use forest carbon credits to offset up to 8% of their greenhouse gas emissions.

However, conservation projects covered by the program to date account for only about 1.5% of California’s 33 million forested acres, or about 490,000 acres. Since the program launched in 2013, those projects have been issued credits to offset 26 million metric tons of carbon dioxide. That is equivalent to about 6% of the state’s total annual emissions.

California’s market prices 1 metric ton of carbon at around $17 – not enough to incentivize landowners to conserve land rather than develop it, said Noah Deich, executive director of Carbon 180, a nonprofit that advocates for practices that remove carbon from the atmosphere.

“The goal of that carbon-offsets program was never primarily to incentivize large-scale forest preservation and or restoration,” Deich said, but rather to make it cheaper for emitters to meet their cap and trade obligations.

If the state’s carbon price of about $17 per metric ton were applied to this year’s estimated wildfire emissions, that would work out to roughly $3.4 billion in potential carbon market value up in smoke.

Most of this year’s burned lands, however, are not part of the cap-and-trade scheme, which serves California-based companies but includes conservation projects outside the state. Next year, California will limit the contribution of out-of-state projects in order to make sure the offset program benefits Californians directly. Companies, however, will be able to offset only up to 4% of their emissions with those projects starting next year.

SCALING UP INFRASTRUCTURE

Since 2018, another ferocious wildfire year, the state government has sought to help private businesses reduce wildfire risks by gathering forest debris for commercial use such as transportation fuels or building products. An August report by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (NYSE:) suggested 800,000 acres of California’s forests could be treated profitably each year.

California had developed a forest management plan for state-owned lands, but it was never finalized because Newsom’s administration said it was not ambitious enough and failed to account for the fact that the federal government owns about 60% of the forests, said CARB spokesman Stanley Young.

The state already spends more than the federal government in maintaining forests, according to an analysis https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-wildfires-forests-insight/california-outpaced-trumps-forest-service-in-wildfire-prevention-work-data-idUSKCN26E2QO of recent data by Reuters.

In August, California announced an agreement with the U.S. Forest Service to reduce wildfire risk in part by using controlled burns and other means to clear 1 million acres of dead wood and other debris each year up to 2025. The deal also seeks to develop markets for woody biomass and a comprehensive statewide plan for forest management that will last 20 years.

The plan is aimed at protecting large trees in particular, which absorb and store carbon over hundreds of years.

“We need to be able to scale up an entire infrastructure around this,” said Jessica Morse, deputy secretary for forest resources management with the California Natural Resources Agency.





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U.S. EPA considering E15 labeling changes at gas pumps: sources By Reuters

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© Reuters. A sign advertising E15, a gasoline with 15 percent of ethanol, is seen at a gas station in Clive

By Stephanie Kelly

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is considering changes to labels for gasoline containing higher blends of ethanol, or E15, in an effort to appease the biofuel industry’s concerns that current labels discourage use of the fuel, according to four sources familiar with the matter.

Expanding the market for E15 has long been a policy goal for farmers and producers of ethanol, a corn-based product, but concerns that some older vehicles don’t run well on the product have been a headwind. Current federal E15 labels warn of possible engine damage.

The Trump administration, meanwhile, has been trying to shore up support in the Farm Belt ahead of the election through favorable announcements for biofuel advocates.

An announcement for a proposal on the labeling changes could come soon, two of the sources said. None of the sources could say exactly how the administration might alter the labeling.

EPA and the White House did not immediately comment.

President Donald Trump in mid-September said in a tweet he would allow states to permit fuel retailers to use their current pumps to sell E15.

Under U.S. law, refiners must blend billions of gallons of biofuels into their fuel pool, or buy credits from those that do. Refiners that prove the requirements harm them financially can get waivers from the obligations.

So-called small refinery exemptions, or SREs, have been a lightning rod of controversy between the Corn and Oil lobbies. Biofuel advocates say the exemptions hurt demand for their product, while the oil industry refutes that and says the waivers helps small refiners stay afloat.

The Trump administration in September sided with farmers in the ongoing debate when it rejected scores of requests from refiners for waivers that would have retroactively spared them from their obligation.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.





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Gold Rock-Solid Just Above $1,900 as Dollar Holds, Dow Plunges By Investing.com

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© Reuters.

By Barani Krishnan

Investing.com — A meltdown in stocks a week before the U.S. election and amid alarming new Covid-19 cases sent investors scurrying to safe havens on Monday, solidifying gold’s hold at just above $1,900 an ounce.

While the gain — just $5 on the day for gold futures — was nothing to shout about, it was remarkable for one reason: it came despite a rally in the dollar, which typically would have sent the yellow metal the other way.

It was the second time over the past two weeks that the pair moved the same way, the last being on Oct. 16, when both were down about 0.2% on the day. While it’s too early to suggest that the inverse correlation trade between the dollar and gold is over, the breakdown was certainly something to muse over

“Gold prices are hanging in there despite a strong dollar as investors flee to safe-havens over anxiety over the coronavirus crisis (and) growing expectations for a ‘blue wave’,” said Ed Moya at OANDA in New York, referring to the win expected for “blue” or Democratic party candidate Joe Biden versus red or Republican party president Donald Trump.

settled at $1,905.70, up 50 cents, or 0.03%, as the  plunged almost 3%.

, which reflects real-time trades in bullion, was up $1.99, or 0.1%, at $1,903.55 by 3:00 PM ET (19:00 GMT).

The , which pits the greenback against six major currencies, was up 0.3% at 93.04.

Back in March, when risk aversion for the year was at its heights right after the global outbreak of the coronavirus, gold and the dollar surged at the same time.

The dollar then sank and gold continued its climb almost relentlessly, gaining more than $500 or 30% to hit record highs of almost $2,090 on Comex in early August.

At that point, gold tumbled as investors turned back to the dollar, which became the haven of choice due to its standing as a reserve currency. Gold hit 11-week lows of around $1,851 by late September before digging its heels into the low $1,900 support last week.

“From what we know, people are being drawn to gold now for different reasons now,” said Phillip Streible, chief market strategist at Blueline Futures in Chicago.

“The possibility of additional stimulus is certainly one; we all know another relief plan is happening, it’s just a matter of when. Another is that people are still reliving the after the election in 2016 when the Dow swung up 1,500 points overnight. So there’s this theory that gold could continue to dive with all the uncertainty we have over the present election before snapping back. Gold could benefit over this week and it has had low volatility anyway.”

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.





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Have Wheat Prices Topped Out ? – Growing Your Money

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Have Wheat Prices Topped Out ?

Wheat Futures—Wheat futures in the December contract  is currently trading lower by 10 cents at 6.22 a bushel or 1.62% this Monday afternoon in Chicago as many commodity sectors are lower today due to the fact that the Coronavirus is making new headlines once again as the Dow Jones Industrial Average is down nearly 900 points.

Wheat prices are trading far above their 20 and 100 day moving average as the trend remains to the upside, however for the bullish momentum to continue prices have to break the October 20th high of 6.38 which happened in last week’s trade.

I have been recommending a bullish position over the last month or so from around the 5.40 level and if you took that trade continue to place the stop loss under the 2 week low on a hard basis only standing at 5.87 as an exit strategy, however the chart structure will start to improve on a daily basis later this week as the monetary risk will be reduced substantially.

At the present time I also have bullish recommendations in soybeans and soybean meal which continue to hit contact highs today as the entire sector has entered into a long-term bullish secular trend in my opinion so stay long as the volatility will remain extremely high. 

TREND: HIGHER

CHART STRUCTURE: IMPROVING

VOLATILITY: HIGH

 

 

 

If you are looking to contact Michael Seery (CTA—COMMODITY TRADING ADVISOR) at 1-630-408-3325 I will be more than happy to help you with your trading or visit www.seeryfutures.com

TWITTER—@seeryfutures

 Email: mseery@seeryfutures.com
If you’re looking to open a Trading Account click on this link www.admis.com

There is a substantial risk of loss in futures and futures options. Furthermore, Seery Futures is not responsible for the accuracy of the information contained on linked sites. Trading futures and options is Not appropriate for every investor.

 

  

 



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