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    ZE is Sponsoring at the Mid-c Seminar 2021

    Virtual
    July 13, 2021

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    Global Tech Summit 2021

    Virtual
    September 28, 2021

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    ZE in the News

    We're making headlines. Here's what you hear about ZE and ZEMA in the news.

    ZE PowerGroup and Kpler Announce Partnership to Provide Increased Access to Kpler Commodity Data

    ZE PowerGroup Inc. (ZE) and Kpler are excited to join hands and offer customers quick and easy access to Kpler data. ZE PowerGroup is a one-of-a-kind business with an exceptional global reputation, specializing in data management and analytics. The company caters to the unique needs of organizations across industries from finance and commodity to energy […]

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    2021 brings big changes to the carbon market landscape

    ZE PowerGroup Inc. explores how newly launched emissions trading systems, recently established task forces, upcoming initiatives and the new US President, Joe Biden, and his administration can further the drive towards tackling the climate crisis This year will see some major changes to the carbon market landscape, as new national trading systems are launched, others […]

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    ZE Ranked No. 9 On the Chartis Energy50 Ranking Report for Top Energy Fintech Technology Firms

    ZE PowerGroup (ZE) has been ranked 9th on the Chartis Energy50 Rankings for top Energy Fintech firms across the globe. A technology powerhouse, ZE is a global leader in providing state-of-the-art end-to-end data management and data analytics solutions in energy, agriculture, mining, commodities, supply chain, and other data-driven organizations. ZE’s award-winning ZEMA data management platform […]

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    What we have to say

    Read our blog to learn more about ZE, ZEMA, and how we're revolutionizing the market for our clients around the world.

    EU carbon prices set new records amid speculative buying

    The EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) has had a tumultuous start to 2021. Prices have risen by 22% to new record highs in the last six weeks as a wave of speculative investment has come into the market, and industrial and utility compliance companies have been shoved to the sidelines.

    The rally is part of a longer-term trend that has seen the price of EU emissions allowances (EUAs) soar by 73% since November 2 last year. Over the same period, the number of financial and speculative entities holding positions in EUAs has leapt from 308 to 426, according to ICE Futures data.

    EUA CHART

    What has driven this wave of investment in carbon?

    Many experts attribute the renewed popularity of EUAs to political ambition by the EU. Last year incoming Commission president Ursula von der Leyen announced the 27-nation bloc would adopt a goal of achieving “net zero” emissions by 2050, and implement a Green Deal to transform the European economy.

    A significant portion of the burden will be borne by he energy sector, through EU initiatives including directives covering renewable energy and energy efficiency, but industry will also face tougher emissions trading goals.

    In 2017 lawmakers agreed to set a goal of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 40% from 1990 levels by 2030. However, under the Green Deal that target will this year be raised to 55% or potentially even 60% by 2030, and an interim target will be set for 2040 on the way to net zero in 2050.

    The European Commission will table legislative proposals to achieve these goals in the summer, and they will represent a significant tightening of the parameters of the EU ETS.

    What changes are coming?

    According to an impact assessment published by the commission last year, the annual cap on emissions in the EU ETS would need to be adjusted to account for a steeper reduction trajectory to 2030. But because the so-called linear reduction factor (LRF) – the annual reduction – has already been set at a 2.2% decrease from 2021 to 2025, lawmakers will have to consider a much steeper LRF after 2025.

    Some experts say the LRF would need to be raised to 6.8% from 2025, or that the EU would need to make a one-off reduction in the cap of 363 million EUAs starting from 2026. For comparison, the EU ETS cap in 2021 stands at 1.57 billion EUAs.

    Other elements could include making adjustments to the Market Stability Reserve (MSR), the mechanism that adjusts market supply each year by removing a proportion of the calculated surplus EUAs in circulation.

    The MSR presently withdraw 24% of the surplus each year, and is scheduled to continue at 24% until 2023, when it will revert to 12%. It’s possible the EU may decide to extend the 24% rate for an additional period to take up even more of the surplus in a shorter period. As more and more coal-fired power plants are closing,  emissions are expected to drop more sharply in the EU, and a flexible MSR is considered by some to be the best way to manage supply.

    The EU is also considering including emissions from maritime transport, buildings and road transport in the EU ETS, though it’s not yet clear what impact these sectors would have on demand and supply.

    Analysts have predicted that with these tighter targets, EUA prices could reach as much as €80 towards the end of the decade.

    Back to the market…

    While the overall trend in carbon prices has been to a large extent a function of political ambition and investors’ reaction to those signals as described above, there are plenty of fundamental drivers that are also driving higher prices.

    Chief among these has been energy prices. 2020 saw an armada of LNG cargoes from the US push European gas prices down by as much as 55%. Cheaper gas combined with rising carbon prices helped push coal-fired generation into negative margins.

    Since October 2020, all energy markets have enjoyed a recovery that has taken front-month natural gas in particular from around €13.18/MWh to as much as €20/MWh in February, an increase of more than 57%. But because coal prices have risen too, but by only 15%, more efficient coal plants have begun to be favoured, again boosting fundamental demand.

    MONTH-AHEAD SPREADS CHARTS

    To be sure, coal fired power is still uncompetitive for generation in 2022 and later, and it may well be that once the current spell of colder weather ends, nearer-dated generation spreads for 2021 may also revert to favouring natural gas.

    Other fundamental factors are related to physical supply and demand. As the market entered a new trading phase in 2021, the European Commission has had to recalculate the parameters for allocating free EUAs to industries at risk of carbon leakage (relocating abroad to jurisdictions with fewer penalties on carbon emissions).

    The process of calculation has taken longer than expected, with the result that industrial installations have not been told how many free EUAs they will receive this year, nor have any been issued. The normal deadline for such issuance is at the end of February, but the Commission has said it may only start to hand out EUAs from the second quarter of the year.

    While all participants in the EU ETS won’t need to surrender their 2021 EUAs until April 2022, the psychological impact of the delay may be impacting prices.

    Another contributing factor is that installations cannot use 2021-issued EUAs to surrender for their 2020 compliance, which will take place in March and April this year. Typically, companies have been able to “borrow” new EUAs to pay off older compliance debts, but this has been specifically ruled out for 2020 compliance.

    Already there are signs of industrial companies that have been caught out by this rule, and the anticipation of “distressed” buying up to the April 30 deadline has helped support EUA prices. Trading sources expect that a premium will emerge for 2020-eligible EUAs in the coming two months.

    But most traders agree that by far the biggest driver has been speculative buying. After articles about carbon prices appeared on both Bloomberg and the Financial Times in the same week, prices leaped even higher as new money entered the market and, despite a brief reversal last week, the EU ETS looks set to consolidate its gains in the coming weeks.

    View Article
    Congratulations to the 2020 Global Energy Awards Winners and the Finalists!

    Energy companies from 10 countries, spanning 4 continents, received honors for leadership, innovation and exemplary performance in 2020 at the annual Platts Global Energy Awards event held Virtually on December 10.

    Hosted by celebrity Jason Alexander (George from Seinfeld TV show), the winners were announced virtually, and we had a virtual table with members of the Platts Channel Partners team being the hosts at the ZE Table.

    This Energy Awards honored organizations and individuals in the energy industry who are dedicated to achieving excellence. This year’s winners and finalists represents the best of the best in the industry.

    Dr. Zak was a finalist for the Lifetime Achievement award and the list of finalists was impressive with Dawood Al-Dawood, Vice President-Northern Area Oil Operations at Saudi Aramco being the winner.

    It should be noted that Dr. Zak was the ONLY Technology company represented on the list.

    Lifetime Achievement Award Finalist were:
    • George Sakellaris, Ameresco
    • Dr. Debesh Chandra Patra, Bharat Petroleum Corporation
    • Kate Chisholm, Capital Power
    • Tan Sri Ngau Boon Keat, Dialog Group
    • Rt Hon The Lord Barker of Battle, En+ Group
    • Rocky Plemons, Fluor Corporation
    • Prabhat Singh, Petronet LNG
    • Dawood Al-Dawood, Saudi Aramco
    • Augustine ‘Austin’ Avuru, Seplat
    • Dr. Zak El-Ramly, ZE PowerGroup

    View Article
    Tender Dashboards and Data trends for agriculture and soft commodities

    Tim Worledge,
    Editorial Director at Fastmarkets
    AgriCensus

    Tim spoke about the role of price reporting agencies (PRAs) and the advantages they bring to modern markets. PRAs rely more on “old-school” methods rather than technological solutions.

    The primary role of PRAs is to “research, write and distribute original market-moving news and trade intelligence, and to provide reliable physical price indices in key locations that can be used for everything from trade negotiations to physical contracts to derivative instruments that are designed to better manage risk.”

    Agricensus began covering corn, wheat and soybeans in 2017, and has expanded to vegetable oil and meal among others. The agricultural sector has been attracting attention from older, more established PRAs recently.

    In addition to price indices, PRAs produce detailed market commentary that explains what has happened during the course of the trading day, as well as news reporting that puts prices and markets into context.

    PRAs are independent organizations that do not take or hold any position in the markets and which have no vested interest in any counterparty, price or traded volume. Their only obligation is to provide an impartial price assessment. PRAs are regulated by both the G20 through IOSCO and the EU.

    Around one-third of Agricensus’ 750 price indices are actually assessed, based on actual bids, offers and trades. Another one-third is derived from those assessments, such as differentials, and the final third are calculated assessments, such as delivered (CFR) or FOB prices, crushed margin assessments, etc. Assessments are normally made in US dollar terms, but can be converted to 17 local currencies.

    In addition to prices, Agricensus has created a variety of dashboards for insight into individual countries, imports and exports data, statistics, trades, and stock levels.

    Worledge introduced the Agricensus Tender Dashboard, which aggregates data on buying tenders from around the world for analysis. The tender process is seen as a price discovery process for often opaque bulk buying volumes that can influence pricing for the wider market.

    Countries such as Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Egypt are among the largest buyers of agricultural products via tender. Agricensus has built a database of 1053 tenders or private purchases. The data covers 3398 cargoes totaling 144.6 million tons.

    This data is gathered through standard PRA journalistic processes; it does not capture tenders that are not concluded. The data also generates insights into underlying fundamentals: for example, it reveals the growth of Brazil as a source of corn for South Korea as US prices have become less competitive; it also shows the ebb and flow of specific companies as dominant participants in individual markets.

    Register now for on-demand sessions from Global Tech Summit!

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    Webinar: Mitigating spot market risk for Latin America’s LNG buyers

    May 12, 2021 00:May PST

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