Top Stories

June 14, 2021


G7 reaffirms net-zero and biodiversity targets with 2030 outlook

Following the G7 Summit, member countries formalised net-zero targets in the 2030s. Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, and US pledged to end direct government support for new thermal coal generation capacity without co-located carbon capture and storage technologies by the end of 2021. All other “inefficient” fossil fuel subsidies will be phased out by 2025. The G7 also committed to publishing strategies outlining efforts to deliver a global transition to net-zero. On biodiversity, the G7 has formally agreed to a shared ‘G7 Nature Compact’, which commits nations to supporting the target to conserve or protect at least 30% of global land and at least 30% of the global ocean by 2030. The G7 has also committed to strengthen their deployment and implementation of nature-based solutions. (Edie)


G7 members step up climate financing commitments to 2025

In last weekend’s G7 meetings, participating nations reaffirmed their commitment to provide $100 billion annually in climate finance to developing nations through to 2025. Ahead of the summit, only the UK and US agreed to increase funding from current levels. During the discussions Canada announced it would double its financing to $4.4 billion over the next five years, with Germany raising its contribution to $7.3 billion annually through to 2025. Ministers called upon Multilateral Development Banks, bilateral Development Finance Institutions, multilateral funds, public banks, and export credit agencies to “ensure that financial flows from these institutions are aligned with the goals of the Paris Agreement”. Green groups remain critical, with recent research from Oxfam suggesting the G7 have been failing to deliver on their $100 billion pledge so far. (Edie)


Germany & Australia sign hydrogen accord to boost renewables tech

Germany and Australia on Sunday signed a bilateral alliance on hydrogen production and trade in an attempt to facilitate a renewable energy-based hydrogen supply chain between the two countries. Both countries’ ministers signed a letter of intent to set up a "Germany Australia Hydrogen Accord", to enable the import of sustainably produced hydrogen in relevant volumes to reach tighter climate targets. Their stated ambition is to produce the cheapest clean hydrogen in the world, which will transform transport, mining, resources and manufacturing. Big energy firms including German utilities RWE and Uniper have started looking into possible new trade routes for hydrogen, a cleaner alternative to fossil fuels, from Australia and other places. (Reuters)


Serco and G4S order NHS test-and-trace suppliers to clean up on tax

The outsourcing companies Serco and G4S have ordered the recruitment agencies that they rely on to provide workers for the NHS test-and-trace system to clean up their supply chains, after a Guardian investigation prompted concerns over tax dodging. Serco confirmed it had passed information on some of its suppliers to HM Revenue and Customs, after evidence emerged that agency staff were being paid via controversial “mini-umbrella companies” (MUCs), which are often used to fraudulently dodge national insurance contributions. The UK government relies on a network of private companies to carry out its pandemic response work, although the system is labelled as NHS test-and-trace. The Guardian found evidence of MUCs across the system, from mobile testing units to contact tracing call centres, to laboratories testing samples. (The Guardian)


McDonald's among latest big firms hit by cybersecurity breaches

Fast food chain McDonald's is the latest big company to be hit by a data breach that has exposed customers' details. The company said cyber attackers had accessed a "small number" of files on customers in South Korea and Taiwan. Operations at its restaurants were not affected by the hack, but personal data on employees was accessed. It is the latest big firm to be targeted by cyber attackers in recent weeks. Game publisher Electronic Arts (EA) said that hackers had stolen valuable information including source code for games such as FIFA 21. The chief executive of Colonial Pipeline also handed over a $4.4 million ransom to hackers in Bitcoin in May, the majority of which has since been recovered by the US Department of Justice. (BBC News)


Wednesday, 16th June 2021

Credible societal impact – staying ahead of the game with the S in ESG

Daily Sessions: Monday 21st June to Friday, 25th June 2021

Social Impact Knowledge Exchange