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We thought friends of The Wendel Forum might be interested in this upcoming event.  The Air & Waste Management Association will be hosting a program to be held at the Wendel Rosen law firm on December 12, 2012.  Registration by December 10 is required to attend.

Come learn more about the first carbon allowance auction, which was held in November, from the perspective of participating industry experts and financial market players.

The speakers will cover auction process, logistics, carbon pricing, the reaction of the markets and various industries, and the motivation behind the legal challenge filed by the California Chamber of Commerce, as well as the implications for future auctions and markets.  We will leave ample time for Q&A from the audience.

BACKGROUND

Pursuant to AB 32, implementing regulations for California’s cap and trade were adopted on December 13, 2011.  They are contained in Article 5:  “California Cap on Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Market-Based Compliance Mechanisms.”

After several postponements, and in the face of a last-minute legal challenge, on November 14, 2012 the Air Resources Board conducted the first auction of allowances for the first compliance period starting on January 1, 2013 and for vintage year 2015.

Those affected by the program include electricity generators, carbon dioxide suppliers, petroleum and natural gas facilities and large industrial sources that emit 25,000 metric tons of CO2 (equivalent) per year or more.  On November 13th, the California Chamber of Commerce filed a lawsuit challenging certain provisions of ARB’s cap-and-trade program.

MODERATOR

Jonathan Redding, Environmental Partner at Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP

Jonathan Redding

Jonathan Redding, program moderator and environmental partner at Wendel Rosen

SPEAKERS

Brad Neff is Manager of AB 32 Cap and Trade Imple

mentation for PG&E.  Brad’s responsibilities at PG&E include coordinating the overall cap and trade implementation effort—including regulatory affairs, market readiness, and customer impact.  Brad graduated top of his class from the University of Utah in both Finance and Economics.  Brad also holds an MBA from HEC Paris where he was the president of the Sustainability Club and developed a renewable energy business plan for EDF’s green energy services group.

He will be introducing the basics of the Auction process and PG&E’s perspective on cap and trade.

Loren Kaye is President of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education, an affiliate of the California Chamber of Commerce, and a Gubernatorial appointee to the Little Hoover Commission.  Prior to joining the Foundation in 2006, Loren served in senior policy positions for Governors Pete Wilson and George Deukmejian, including Cabinet Secretary to the Governor and Undersecretary of the California Trade and Commerce Agency.

He will speak on the motivations for and reasons why the Chamber of Commerce opposes the auction and filed the lawsuit.  In short, the lawsuit does not challenge any of the provisions of AB 32 nor the merits of climate change science.  The only issue addressed in the litigation is the portion of CARB’s regulatory program that seeks to permit the Board to allocate to itself GHG emissions allowances and to profit by selling them to GHG emitters.

Dusty Granet is a Broker with BGC Environmental Brokerage Services L.P. (BGC).  He joined BGC in January 2012 from Evolution Markets where he spent three years advising the environmental marketplace on California emissions and U.S. water markets.

He will be speaking about pre action and post auction carbon pricing and market reactions on the process and the pricing; options within the secondary market for future transactions involving allowances and offsets; and how to minimize risks through the OTC market.

IMPORTANT:  Pre-registration is required for this event.

AGENDA
– 5:00 pm – Arrival/Reception
– 5:30 pm – Dinner
– 6:00 pm – Presentation
– 8:00 pm – Adjournment
To register visit: http://www.awma-gws.org/events/20121212/index.html

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In Episode 53 of The Wendel Forum (originally aired on March 10, 2012, on 960 KNEW AM radio), show host Dick Lyons visits Natural Products Expo West 2012 in Anaheim.  The show sees 60,000 attendees and more than 2,000 exhibitors showcasing their products including a wide range of natural living products, specialty foods, natural ingredients, supplements, and health and beauty aids.  In addition there are numerous seminars and presentation, as well as informal discussions on topics from fair trade and supply chain issues to organic labeling and greenwashing. 

While attending the Expo, Dick had the opportunity to speak with Sarah Roquemore, Outreach Coordinator with the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), on the topic of palm oil, a product that appears in nearly 50% of the food on your grocer’s shelves and in products as diverse as toothpaste and laundry detergent.

Although palm oil is a widely-used product, most people have no idea how prevalent it is in our food stream. Nor do they realize the environmental impact its cultivation has on our planet.  In recent years, the high demand for palm oil has contributed to the deforestation of many tropical regions.  UCS claims that 15% of emissions that cause global warming come from tropical deforestation (more than all cars, planes, trucks and ships combined).  The connection between deforestation and emissions is not obvious. However, trees can be viewed as big carbon storage devices.  They absorb carbon dioxide out of the air as they grow.  When trees are cut down and burned or left to rot, the carbon they have stored is released back into the atmosphere.  In addition, deforestation has destroyed habitat for numerous animals and leads to loss of biodiversity.

Of course balancing the needs of the supply chain, the environment and local economies in (often) poor regions of the world is a challenging proposition.  But there are some bright spots.  Sarah suggests that there is movement on multiple fronts to address this problem, including promoting changes to the way we grow and produce vegetable oil, local jurisdictional controls on farming practices, and consumer campaigns that have changed the practices of companies who use the oil.

A relatively recent example of a successful consumer-driven corporate shift on palm oil sourcing happened in 2010 with Nestlé.  After being targeted for their use of palm oil from sources of deforestation in a public campaign, led largely by Greenpeace, Nestle has adopted Responsible Sourcing Guidelines. The company has committed to “ensuring that its products do not have a deforestation footprint,” according to its website.

The Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil is another growing resource in the fight to produce palm oil in a more responsible way. This group actively looks to improve the sourcing options, simplify the distribution channels and verify the supply chain for palm oil.  But it’s a complex problem, and some feel that the group has not gone far enough in establishing guidelines and certifications. 

In the meantime, the Union of Concerned Scientists will continue their program to publicize the issue, taking knowledge to product manufacturers and the public. 

Post Links:

Listen to the interview with Sarah Roquemore:  Episode 53 of The Wendel Forum(27:53 mins; mp3)

UCS Report “Recipes for Success: Solutions for Deforestation-Free Vegetable Oils”: http://www.ucsusa.org/global_warming/solutions/forest_solutions/deforestation-free-vegetable-oils.html

Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil website: http://www.rspo.org/

Greenpeace follow up story on Nestle campaign (dated 5/23/2011): http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/news/features/One-year-after-Nestle-committed-to-giving-rainforests-a-break–what-has-been-achieved/

Nestlé Responsible Souring Guidelines: http://www.nestle.com/Common/NestleDocuments/Documents/Media/Statements/2011-Nestle_Responsible_Sourcing_Guidelines.pdf 

Natural Products Expo West 2012 website: http://www.expowest.com/ew12/public/enter.aspx

960 KNEW AM Radio website: http://www.960KNEW.com

Dick Lyons’ online profile: http://www.wendel.com/rlyons

 

[Note: Thanks to Wendel Rosen attorney Greg Jung for this update and guest post.  You can be sure we’ll be watching what happens with cap-and-trade in California.]

Greg Jung, attorney at Wendel Rosen

Greg Jung, attorney at Wendel Rosen

On Tuesday, the San Francisco Superior Court Judge who had previously ruled in March 2011 that the California Air Resources Board (CARB) had not adequately considered alternatives to its plan to create a cap-and-trade market for carbon emissions found that CARB has demonstrated satisfactory compliance with adequately complied with his prior orders. (ASSOCIATION OF IRRITATED RESIDENTS et al VS. CALIFORNIA AIR RESOURCES BOARD et al , case no. CPF-09-509562.)

This order paves the way for California to implement the cap-and-trade program. CARB approved and submitted its final cap-and-trade regulations to the California Office of Administrative Law in October 2011. The program is scheduled to take effect in 2013 and is part of the regulations implementing the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 (AB32), which requires California to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to 1990 levels by 2020.

Post Links:

Superior Court of California, County of San Francisco, Register of Actions in case: http://webaccess.sftc.org/Scripts/Magic94/mgrqispi94.dll?APPNAME=IJS&PRGNAME=ROA22&ARGUMENTS=-ACPF09509562

AB32 Bill Text: http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/pub/05-06/bill/asm/ab_0001-0050/ab_32_bill_20060927_chaptered.pdf

CARB website info on AB 32: http://www.arb.ca.gov/cc/ab32/ab32.htm

In Episode 32 of The Wendel Forum (originally aired on September 17, 2011 on Green 960 AM radio) show host Bill Acevedo takes a closer look at our oceans, a subject near and dear to his heart as an avid surfer. Show guests are Ashok Kamal, CEO of Bennu, and Dean LaTourrette, Executive Director of Save The Waves Coalition, a non-profit engaged in coastal protection.

Ashok Kamal Photo

Ashok Kamal of Bennu

Ashok was the author of “Blue is the New Green” a recent blog post on Triple Pundit that gotten a fair amount of attention for its focus on the issues of preserving our oceans.

He argues that when we talk about environmental issues, we often fail to talk about our oceans as a part of this holistic system. Problems ranging from trash in our oceans and its impact on the ocean ecosystem to the acidification of our oceans can go largely unnoticed, but are not separate from what happens above the waterline.  Bennu, his social media marketing company, has taken on a number of initiatives to build creative and tactical online campaigns supporting eco-friendly companies and causes, including a recent one called Ocean Aid.    

Dean LaTourrette Photo

Dean LaTourrette of Save the Waves Coalition

Dean shares some of the programs that Save the Waves has in place to help combat issues around sea level rise and coastal erosion. He points to a study just released bySan Francisco State University professor Phil King that attempts to place economic valuations on coastal environmental losses for California cities.  

Other Save the Waves programs discussed on the show include the Surfenomics program (which has put an environmental and economic value to Mavericks of about $24 million annually), world surfing reserves, and analysis of the fight to save Sloat beach, a 3 mile stretch that offers world-class surfing in San Francisco.  

Show Posts:

Listen to the interview: Episode 32 of The Wendel Forum (27+ minutes, mp3)

Bennu: www.bennuworld.com  (from here you’ll find links to all of their social media pages)

Blue is the New Green blog post on Triple Pundit:  http://www.triplepundit.com/2011/09/blue-new-green-environmentalists-need-pay-closer-attention-ocean/

Save the Waves website: www.savethewaves.org

Bill Acevedo’s website bio: www.wendel.com/wacevedo

Green 960 AM radio website: www.green960.com

In my humble opinion, one of the things that sets Wendel Rosen apart from other firms in the green space is our desire to move the needle forward.  Not only do we represent clients who focus on sustainability as an operating principle, but we also take part in legislative initatives that are designed to expand the principles of sustainability to all.

Today, I am proud to state that SB 582 passed through the California State Legislature on Wednesday.  SB 582 – a commuter benefits bill – was modeled on a San Francisco ordinance that required employers to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, congestion, and air pollution by offering employees options to pay for alternative commuting expenses with pre-tax dollars (e.g., commuter checks to buy high-value BART or Muni passes).  This legislation doesn’t just benefit employees, however.  There is a financial benefit to the employer, as well, because participation in this initiative is sweetened through a reduction in the payroll taxes that the employer pays.

It is estimated that approximately forty percent (40%) of transportation-related greenhouse gas emissions is due to commuting.  Reducing vehicle miles traveled by the sole driver is a priority to reducing these emissions.  By offering commuter benefits, such as those outlined by SB 582, employers and employees can work together to consider alternatives to simply driving alone to the office.

Wendel Rosen, like other mission-driven businesses, happily supported SB 582 (as you can see from the Wendel Rosen Letter of Support for SB 582).  We’ve been offering commuter benefits to our employees for years.  We’re proud of that track record, and we are equally pleased to have assisted in the passage of this bill. 

We can’t wait for Governor Jerry Brown to sign it into law.

In the second part of our two part series, show host Dick Lyons chats with three more finalist companies from this year’s San Francisco Business Times Cleantech & Sustainability Awards, held on June 16, 2011.  In Episode 22 of The Wendel Forum (originally aired on Green 960 AM radio on July 2, 2011), Dick learns more about the following companies:
 

Winner: Cleaire (interview with Brad Edgar, President and CTO, and Gale Plummer, CEO)
Category: Transportation

Description: Based in San Leandro, Cleaire designs and manufactures diesel engine filtration systems that could be used to remove particulate matter from exhaust in one million diesel engines in California –- and an estimated potential universe of 40-50 million vehicles already in service world wide.  They distribute and service the technology through a qualified dealer network whose customers include fleets of buses, construction equipment and trucks.

Winner: Solazyme (interview with Harrison Dillon, Co-Founder, President and Chief Technology Officer)
Category: Sustainable Fuels/Chemicals

Description: Solazyme makes oil – all kinds.  Their renewable oils are used in applications ranging from jet fuel to food products.  Dillon and his partner, CEO Jonathan Wolfson, started the company eight years ago in a garage in Palo Alto (where have we heard a story like that before?), originally setting  out  to make a diesel oil substitute from algae.  Since then, they’ve expanded to be able to custom design oils that can be used in a multitude of products.  Their oil can even be found in natural products carried by retailers such as Whole Foods and GNC.  By putting these healthy oils into food products, they are able to take out the saturated fat and keep the products both low fat and satisfying.

Winner: Driptech (interview with Peter Frykman, CEO)
Category: Water

Description:  Driptech makes affordable drip irrigation systems that allow small-plot famers in developing countries to have access to the same water-efficient irrigation that large plot farmers have used for decades.   The key to the technology (which includes some nifty precision laser manufacturing technology) is distributed local manufacturing.  Amazing what a class project at Stanford might turn into!

Coming up this week:

Tune in Saturday morning (July 9) to hear from a company that gives collective buying power to individual employees in organizations for home energy improvements (such as solar panels, insulation and water heaters).   If you’re out of radio signal range, remember you can always click the “Listen Live” button on the station’s website at www.green960.com

Post Links:

Listen to the Interviews: Episode 22 of The Wendel Forum(22.17 mins)

Cleaire website: http://www.cleaire.com

Solazyme website: http://www.solazyme.com/

Driptech website: http://driptech.com/

Green 960 AM radio website: www.green960.com

About show host Dick Lyons: www.wendel.com/rlyons

On April 2, 2011, we launched the inaugural episode in our new half hour format! 

Episode 9 of The Wendel Forum (originally aired on Green 960 AM radio, April 2, 2011) kicks off the show’s new half hour format.  Bill Acevedo interviews Blakely Atherton and Pic Walker of the Alliance for Climate Education (ACE).

Photo of Bill Acevedo during show

Bill Acevedo in Studio

The organization’s climate change education comes in the form of a multi-media “rocumentary” with live presentation that engages high school students around the country. Pic and Blakely discuss how this innovative nonprofit program not only educates high school students, but it inspires them to take personal action regarding climate change.  

They talk about how they originally identified a need to communicate acurate climate science information with high school students; the form, content and regional challenges associated with these lively presentations; and how they measure success.  They even share a short trailer (posted on YouTube) that showcases the program through presentation footage and audience testimonials. 

Photo of Walker and Atherton in Studio

Walker and Atherton discuss Alliance for Climate Education

Bonus Material!

At the end of the Episode 9 audio, you’ll get a set of bonus material – a repeat set of some of our previous 3 minute segments. Keep listening to catch up on some of what you’ve missed so far (segments below, each about 3 minutes long):

  • Episode 3 “The Supply Chain Ripple Effect” – using Walmart as an example, Dick Lyons discuss the impact that all businesses can have on their supply chains.
  • Episode 5 “Investing Through Convertible Preferred Stock” – Dick Lyons discusses how preferred stock allows investors to get involved with our fictional company, GreenCo. 
  • Episode 6 “Series A Stock & Redemption Rights” – Dick’s analysis of issues that may face company owners when Series A stock redemption rights kick in.
  • Episode 7 “Natural Products Expo West 2011” – Dick Lyons reports back from this annual conference that has grown exponentially during the last thirty years
  • Episode 8 “Are You Sure You Know What ‘Organic’ Means?” – Dick Lyon’s discusses the labeling requirements related to organic and natural products.  

 

Be sure to tune in to Green 960 AM radio at 11:30 a.m. (PDT) on Saturday during the Green Morning lineup to listen to our next episode.  If you are out of signal range, have no fear.  You can listen live online via the station’s website (www.green960.com).  Host Bill Acevedo will be talking with leaders at two very different companies, each with its own unique way of lightening the load in our nation’s landfills.  Guests are James Reinhart of ThredUp and Dustin Page and Aaron Parrish of Platinum Dirt.

 We hope you like the new longer format.  After you’ve listened, come back and tell us what you think!  What future topics interest you?

 Post links:

 Listen to Interview with ACE:  Episode 9

Green 960 AM Radio: www.green960.com

Alliance for Climate Education organization website: www.acespace.org

Alliance for Climate Education YouTube video trailer:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kGJRKBQzAx0