In today’s edition, a bit of frustration: though all evidence point in the same direction, ie that tougher energy efficiency targets would boost the world economy (and the UK’s, according to a new study), the will and the money seem to be lacking in some places (like the UK and Australia) to put the shoulder to the wheel and be green once and for all.
Quote of the day
“The mantra in Brasília is that they have deforestation under control, but the evidence on the ground shows this is not true.”
Philip M. Fearnside, a prominent researcher at the National Institute for Amazon Research in Manaus, the Amazon’s largest city, in the New York Times’ story Clashing Visions of Conservation Shake Brazil’s Presidential Vote
Tougher energy efficiency target would boost UK economy by £62bn – study
Arthur Neslen, The Guardian
A 40% cut in energy use by 2030 through efficiency measures would increase the UK’s GDP by £62bn and create 40,000 new jobs, according to unpublished EU figures.
***LB: Also in this story “GDP gains are three times higher with a 40% reduction target than with 30%. It is significant that the countries which were hardest hit by the financial crisis – Greece, Portugal, Ireland – are among the strongest advocates of going as far as we can.”
Clashing Visions of Conservation Shake Brazil’s Presidential Vote
Simon Romero, The New York Times
As the fires rage, the helicopters of the environmental police at this outpost in the Brazilian Amazon cannot even take off some mornings because the sky is so thick with smoke.
Is this the death of Australia’s renewable energy industry?
Giles Parkinson, REnewecononomy
The Australian government – and ministers Greg Hunt and Ian Macfarlane in particular, like to tell everyone how much they support renewable energy. But they seem to be doing their level best to trash the industry in Australia.
Green deal (UK) finance firm warns about funding gap
Terry Macalister, The Guardian
A finance company established to provide loans to homeowners as part of the government’s flagship energy efficiency programme has warned it may consider voluntary liquidation at a board meeting next week.
***LB: Also in this story “The Green Deal Finance Company, set up with more than £240m of public money, has run into trouble partly because it has been unable to convince the state-owned Green Investment Bank to continue funding.”
Holcim mulls next move after EU court rejects carbon theft lawsuit
Michael Szabo, Reuters
European cement maker Holcim is mulling its options after the European Union’s top court dismissed its lawsuit against the European Commission over the theft of 1.6 million emissions allowances in 2010.
EMA’s 18th Annual Meeting
Join the Environmental Markets Association and environmental industry professional for two days of dynamic sessions, two nights of networking receptions, and countless opportunities to increase your business contacts.
October 22 – 24, 2014
Santa Monica, CA
FT European Gas Summit
The FT European Gas Summit brings together leading and aspiring gas suppliers from around the globe, as well as energy industry experts, commentators and government decision makers to review the potential barriers to new gas supplies for Europe, and the impact on the region’s economic competitiveness. The summit will be chaired by Guy Chazan, Energy Editor, Financial Times.
23 October 2014
REDD+ In Ecuador: A Forest Of Opportunities
The vast majority of Ecuador’s forest communities live in poverty and are wholly dependent on their natural environment to sustain them.
Natural gas / coal
EEX New Participant Natural Gas Spot Market: Solvay Energy Services
Solvay Energy Services additionally has been admitted to exchange trading for the products NCG-H-Gas and NCG-L-Gas.
Indian coal import growth outstrips China
Neil Hume, Financial Times
Could India soon overtake China as the world’s biggest consumer of seaborne thermal coal?
Shell suspends Russian shale oil venture with Gazprom Neft
Jack Farchy and Ed Crooks, Financial Times
Royal Dutch Shell has suspended work on its joint venture with Gazprom Neft to develop Russian shale oil, the latest evidence that co-operation between western and Russian oil companies has ground to a halt because of sanctions.
Greenpeace slams standby payments for (Uk’s) coal power plants
Will Nichols, BusinessGreen
Plans to subsidise a raft of coal power plants to remain open have been strongly criticised by campaigners.
Wind power needs subsidy to compete in US, says Siemens
Ed Crooks, Financial Times
The US wind power industry still needs subsidy to compete with fossil fuels, according to Germany’s Siemens, one of the world’s largest wind turbine manufacturers.
Ecotricity: (UK) Coalition rocking renewables investment climate
Jessica Shankleman, BusinessGreen
Independent energy supplier Ecotricity has completed a 9MW wind farm in Devon, but accused the government of contributing to declining investor uncertainty in the renewable energy sector.
Tesla Model S – yours from £820 a month
Tesla has launched a new financing programme in the UK that will offer customers the chance to drive its Model S all-electric sedan from £820 a month.
Brazil Prepares Water Rationing Plan
Circle of Blue
By the end of the month, Brazil’s national water regulator hopes to finalize proposed water restrictions in two states hit by the region’s worst-ever drought.
EPA Regulations Provide Inadequate Protection against Hazardous Chemicals in Waterways
Circle of Blue
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations are insufficient for guarding against pesticides, heavy metals, solvents, and other hazardous chemicals being put into waterways from sewage treatment plants, according to an investigation by the agency’s internal watchdog.
Millstone discharging warmer water into Sound
Bill Cummings, CTpost.com
A decision a few months ago to allow the Millstone nuclear power plant to cool its reactors with increasingly hot water from Long Island Sound also confirmed a decades-long belief the waterway is warming and changing.
Geothermal Energy Raises Concerns About Drinking Water in California
Circle of Blue
A community in California’s Sierra mountains is concerned that plans to expand geothermal energy production in the area could threaten drinking water supplies.
Fish failing to adapt to rising carbon dioxide levels in ocean
Oliver Milman, theguardian.com
Rising carbon dioxide levels in oceans adversely change the behaviour of fish through generations, raising the possibility that marine species may never fully adapt to their changed environment, research has found.
***LB: Also in this story “The study, published in Nature Climate Change, found that elevated CO2 levels affected fish regardless of whether their parents had also experienced the same environment.”
Wilderness as economic stimulus? A closer look at the evidence
Shawn Regan, contributor, The Hill
There are many good reasons to love wilderness. The Wilderness Act, which passed 50 years ago this year, describes several of them: outstanding opportunities for solitude, primitive and unconfined recreation experiences, and the preservation of special places “where the earth and its community of life are untrammeled by man.”
(UK’s) Lib Dems set out vision for a greener Treasury
James Murray, BusinessGreen
As the Lib Dem conference in Glasgow prepares to this week highlight the junior coalition partner’s green credentials, a group of leading Lib Dem MPs have today backed a new pamphlet arguing that drastic reforms are required at the Treasury if the UK is to accelerate the development of its low carbon economy.