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EU carbon price hits all-time high of Eur99.14/mtCO2e

Highlights

All-time intra-day high for nearest December contract

Fresh gains as tight supply adds to squeeze

Drought conditions increasing need for gas-fired power

Carbon allowance prices under the EU Emissions Trading System hit an all-time high of over Eur99/mtCO2e Aug. 19, as a cut to auction supply in August combined with bullish demand.

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EU Allowance futures contracts for December 2022 delivery rallied as high as Eur99.14/mtCO2e ($99.70/mt) on Aug. 19 -- the highest intraday price ever recorded for the nearest-December futures contract on the ICE Endex exchange.

That compared with a close of Eur96.53/mtCO2e on Aug. 18, according to Platts assessments published by S&P Global Commodity Insights.

The latest gains came amid a short-term supply crunch with monthly auction volumes down to 24.1 million mt in August, dropping 43% from July levels.

On the demand side, drought conditions in Europe this summer have curtailed electricity generation from low carbon sources such as hydro-electric and nuclear, increasing the need for gas-fired generation, which raises CO2 emissions and demand for allowances.

The high temperatures have also boosted summer cooling demand, raising the need for electricity in homes and commercial buildings, and supporting natural gas and coal prices in Europe, Platts Analytics said in a spotlight report Aug. 19.

However, September could see carbon prices come under downward pressure as auction supply rebounds to normal levels, while bearish pressure builds from a weakening macroeconomic outlook, it said.