Top Stories

July 30, 2021


New body consults on credibility of global carbon offsets

The UK Government has partnered with the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation to fund a new initiative to ensure that voluntary carbon markets actually deliver the levels of mitigation and sequestration needed, and to bring credibility to the voluntary carbon offsets market. The ‘Voluntary Carbon Markets Integrity Initiative’ (VCMI) will develop guidance for businesses on how they can ensure that their claims around becoming ‘carbon-neutral’ or ‘net-zero’ using offsetting are credible. It will also develop a taxonomy for categorising claims, which it hopes to make universal among the private sector globally, and monitor, collaborate with and engage in efforts to ensure integrity. The VCMI will also work to support countries in accessing finance for ‘high-integrity' carbon offsetting scheme delivery, thus helping the market to scale. (Edie)


EU sets checklist for 'climate proof' infrastructure projects

The European Commission has published a guide to assess whether planned infrastructure projects are equipped to cope with climate change impacts like floods and heatwaves. Developers seeking to receive EU funds are required to ensure projects like roads, railways and power plants can cope with extreme weather events. In its guide, the EU Commission said developers should assess what climate-related risks their project may face in the coming years based on data that could include national or regional climate change projections, or the update of a UN climate science report expected in August. If significant risks are identified, the developer should redesign the project to manage and reduce them. The assessment should also calculate the project's expected greenhouse gas emissions to see if it is compatible with EU climate goals. (Reuters)


Co-op to turn plastic bottles from festivals into uniforms

British supermarket Co-op has confirmed plans to host reverse vending machines for plastic bottles and drinks cans at five music festivals this summer, with collected materials recycled into uniforms for staff. Co-op became the first UK retailer to host reverse vending machines in 2018 at Download, Latitude, Reading and Leeds festivals. This year, in partnership with recycled corporate clothing and merchandise supplier Reborn, two machines will be hosted at five festivals. Collected aluminium cans will be recycled and sent for reuse in other aluminium products, while collected plastic will be shredded and turned into RPET pellets at Reborn’s new flagship recycling centre. RPET pellets can then be used to manufacture Co-op uniform items like t-shirts and fleeces, as well as umbrellas, worktops and furniture for use in-store and at events. (Edie)


TotalEnergies and Amazon partner on renewable energy

Oil and gas company TotalEnergies and tech giant Amazon have announced a collaboration agreement aimed at advancing Amazon’s renewable energy strategy and TotalEnergies’ digitization transformation. The companies have entered into power purchase agreements under which TotalEnergies will provide 474 MW of renewable energy capacity to power Amazon’s operations in the US and Canada, with the anticipation of expanding their cooperation in the Middle East and Asia Pacific. Amazon hopes that the deal will help it to achieve its sustainability goals, including reaching net-zero emissions by 2040, and powering 100% of company activities with renewable energy by 2025,The deal was announced a day after TotalEnergies revealed its acquisition of Blue Charge, which will see it take over the largest electric vehicle charging network in Singapore – roughly 85% of installed charge points. (ESGToday 1; ESGToday 2)


US customs urged to probe Goodyear over worker abuse

Anti-trafficking and rights group Liberty Shared has asked US customs authorities to investigate the Malaysian operations of US firm Goodyear Tire & Rubber over accusations of abusive labour practices. Goodyear's Malaysian unit was asked by an industrial court to pay back wages to migrant workers and comply with a collective pact, after dozens of foreign workers sued over unpaid wages and unlawful overtime. Liberty Shared believes its petition to US customs, based on lawsuits and police reports by migrant workers, was probably the first such effort against a subsidiary of a US-owned company in southeast Asia. Similar petitions to US customs, including one last year by Liberty Shared regarding Malaysian palm oil producer Sime Darby Plantation, have led the United States to block imports over suspected use of forced labour. (Thomson Reuters Foundation)


Senior Climate Change Consultant, London

Executive Assistant and Office Manager, New York

Sustainability Senior Consultant, North America

Sustainability Senior Researcher, North America