Top Stories

January 04, 2022


French plastic packaging ban for fruit and vegetables begins

A law banning plastic packaging for large numbers of fruits and vegetables came into force in France on New Year’s Day, as campaigners and shoppers continue to urge other countries to follow suit. Since January 1st 2022,  supermarkets and shops in France have been banned from selling a total of 30 types of fruit and vegetables in plastic packaging. Some varieties, including soft fruits such as raspberries, have been given longer for producers to find alternatives to plastic, with the goal of phasing out plastic packaging for all whole fruits and vegetables by 2026. With an estimated 37% of fruit and vegetables sold wrapped in plastic packaging in France in 2021, the government believes the ban will cut more than 1 billion items of single-use plastic packaging a year. (The Guardian)


French regulators urge financials to be consistent on fossil fuels

France’s financial regulators have announced the publication of a new report examining the exposure and policies related to the fossil fuel sector of financial institutions, including banks, insurers and investment management companies. The report found a broad movement in the industry towards strengthening climate commitments, with actions focused in areas including divestment and exclusion policies and shareholder engagement, as well as pledges supporting green finance and investment and insuring environmentally sustainable activities. However, it noted that the ability to assess, evaluate and compare these commitments remains challenging, given ambiguities in the institutions’ communication of the scope, implementation, and definitions used in setting their policies and pledges. The regulators have issued recommendations for the institutions to adopt concise and consistent frameworks and methodologies to measure and communicate fossil fuel exposure. (ESG Today)


Brussels proposes green label for nuclear and natural gas

The European Commission wants to recognise nuclear power and forms of natural gas as “green” activity as part of the landmark EU taxonomy scheme to help financial markets decide what counts as sustainable investment. The draft taxonomy text says nuclear power should be considered sustainable if countries hosting power stations can safely dispose of toxic waste and meet a criteria to cause “no significant harm” to the environment. The construction of new nuclear plants will be recognised as green for permits granted until 2045. Natural gas is included as “transitional” energy but must meet a set of conditions, including producing emissions less than 270g of CO2 per kilowatt hour for new gas plants approved before the end of 2030, and if it is replacing traditional fossil fuels such as coal. (Financial Times)*


Deutsche Post to offset all carbon emissions from letter mail transport

Logistics giant Deutsche Post DHL Group has announced that its mail and parcel delivery business Deutsche Post will offset all carbon emissions generated by its letter mail operations at no extra charge to customers, effective immediately. The company has said it aims to introduce further options and emissions-reduced products to enable customers to contribute to sustainability and reduce absolute CO2 emissions. The new initiative builds on the ‘GoGreen’ service offered to Deutsche Post and DHL customers, which has provided the option of climate-neutral shipping through offsets. Previously, GoGreen was offered at a charge and available only to businesses with a shipping volume of at least 50,000 items per year. According to Deutsche Post, the expanded programme would translate into an offset of over 300,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions. (ESG Today)


Real estate CDL sets 1.5ºC-aligned science-based emissions goals

After setting a 2030 net-zero target, City Developments Limited (CDL) has set stricter emissions reductions targets and had them verified in line with 1.5ºC by the Science-Based Targets Initiative (SBTi). The new targets include reducing Scope 1 and 2 emissions by 63%, on an intensity basis, by 2030, against a 2016 baseline. On Scope 3, it is targeting a 41% reduction in the intensity of purchased goods and services-related emissions by 2030 against a 2016 baseline, and to cut absolute emissions from investments by 58.8% within the same timeframe. Residual emissions at 2030 will be inset or offset to bring CDL to net-zero. The business is following the World Green Building Council’s (WGBC) Net-Zero Buildings Commitment framework to reduce operational and embodied emissions for new and existing buildings. (edie)


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B4SI Annual Review 2021