Edition for 25 April 2020

Top Stories

Cheung: Covid-19 and The Energy Transition: Our Greatest Decade Awaits (BloombergNEF)

  • More than 1,000 companies support the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures, and 350 have approved science-based targets to reduce their own emissions in line with Paris.
  • Indeed, our Sustainable Energy in America Factbook highlights $8 billion in annual spending by U.S. utility companies on energy efficiency measures, driven by state-level policies, and another $2 billion in energy performance contracts signed by federal government agencies.
  • In the emissions-accounting world, industry, buildings and transport are three distinct sectors – but in the real world, they are interlinked supply chains that will need to collaborate in the transition to low carbon.

‘Pie in the sky ideological schemes’: Premier rebuffs push for renewable transition (660 News - Calgary)

  • “In that world, twenty years from now, when the world needs that energy we want to make sure that it’s coming from a stable, environmentally responsible, market-based democracy with the world’s highest human rights, labour and environmental standards,” said Kenney.
  • “We’re not going to work with the small minority in Congress that wants to pursue the ideological fantasy of shutting down the modern industrial economy.” The Premier said they are promoting the Technology, Innovation and Emissions Reduction (TIER) plan, that looks to incentivize more energy-efficient energy production, but is not as drastic as other moves such as those put in place by the former NDP government.
  • “It would just be a terrible missed opportunity for us to ignore this pathway of development,” said Dr. Mishka Lysack, a professor at the University of Calgary specializing in climate change and sustainable development.

Chicago City Council Votes for Equitable Access to EVs (NRDC)

  • It’s not just Chicago aldermen focused on getting more EVs on the road: the Illinois Clean Energy Jobs Act (CEJA) focuses on the impact of transportation on carbon emissions, even creating “EV Access For All,'' to ensure more people have access to EVs through car-sharing and electric shuttles in transit deserts.
  • The city is ranked eighth in the world for its carbon footprint, with over 31 million metric tons of climate-warming emissions released annually according to the city’s latest Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Inventory Report.
  • While this ordinance will not reduce Chicago’s emissions overnight, its passage is a major step in clean energy investment and innovation, allowing the city to eventually make a big difference in carbon emissions reductions.

Campbell Soup Company Releases 2020 Corporate Responsibility Report (Business Wire Retail News)

  • Campbell Soup Company today released its 2020 Corporate Responsibility report, detailing the company’s fiscal year 2019 achievements and measurable progress against sustainability goals, including accomplishments in the areas of water use, greenhouse gas emissions, food waste, sustainable growing practices and community support.
  • “This year’s report highlights our progress against existing commitments and sets forth new goals as we continue to embed sustainability into our operations and build healthier communities with our partners,” said Roma McCaig, Campbell’s Vice President of Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability.
  • In fiscal 2019, Campbell was named one of the 100 Best Corporate Citizens by Corporate Responsibility Magazine and one of the 100 Most Sustainable Companies in the World by Corporate Knights.

Local Governments Across the County File Legal Brief Challenging EPA’s Failure to Address Power Plant Pollution (Climate Law Blog)

  • Today, the Sabin Center filed an amicus brief on behalf of local governments in support of state and environmental petitioners in American Lung Association v. EPA, the lawsuit challenging the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s repeal of the Clean Power Plan and the dangerously weak replacement rule.
  • The Clean Power Plan was the Obama Administration’s rule regulating greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuel-fired power plants, the nation’s largest stationary source of climate pollution.
  • The rule was expected to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by approximately 30% by 2030.

Explainer: How the U.S. could use taxpayer dollars to save oil and energy companies (Reuters)

  • President Donald Trump said: “The energy business is very important to me, and we’re going to build it up.” About half of the top 60 independent companies in the U.S. oil and energy sector could be forced here into bankruptcy, after oil prices plunged 75% this year, sending prices to levels well below what companies and advisers had modeled in worst-case scenarios.
  • Some energy companies qualified for the Treasury’s $349 billion “small business” payroll lending program, including coal company Hallador Energy Co. Others could nab some of the next $310 billion in funding.

Dutch officials reveal measures to cut emissions after court ruling (Guardian)

  • Green activists claim victory as government will spend €3bn on new climate initiatives.
  • The Dutch government has announced measures including huge cuts to coal use, garden greening and limits on livestock herds as part of its plan to lower emissions to comply with a supreme court ruling.
  • “For many people this will give hope that it is possible to use the law as a strategic instrument for change.” After a seven-year legal battle, the supreme court in the Hague ordered the government in December to reduce emissions by 15 megatonnes in 2020.
  • Along with earlier steps – including lower speed limits to control emissions of nitrogen dioxide, €2bn for rooftop solar and other forms of renewable energy, solar panels on all school rooftops, more sustainable forestry and changes in the use of concrete, the measures are expected to save 8 megatonnes of emissions this year and provide extra benefits in terms of air quality and wildlife habitat.

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