Top Stories

May 11, 2022


UK must grow EV battery production more than fortyfold by 2030

A report published by the Green Finance Institute argues that the UK Government’s 2030 commitment to end the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles lacks adequate supply chain and scaling up support. Members of the Institute’s ‘Coalition for the Decarbonisation of Road Transport’ (CDRT) represent more than 45 organisations, including Uber, Triodos Bank, Mitie, NatWest, Lloyds Banking Group and Transport for London. The report states that organisations across the electric vehicle battery supply chain are finding it challenging to secure funding in the UK because their investments are considered “high-risk” by banks and investors. The report recommends allocation of further government funding to de-risk private investment. The report additionally floats the creation of a lenders’ handbook, giving investors information on battery technologies of the present and future. (edie)


Malaysia considers tax cut to palm oil export amid global supply crisis

Malaysia’s commodities ministry has proposed cutting the export tax on palm oil by as much as half to help fill a global edible oil shortage and grow its market share. A government minister said the country could cut the tax, likely a temporary measure, to 4%-6% from the current 8%. A decision could be made as early as June. Malaysia is looking to boost its share of the edible oil market after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine disrupted sunflower oil shipments and Indonesia’s ban on palm oil exports tightened global supplies. Malaysia will also slow the implementation of its B30 biodiesel mandate, which requires a portion of the nation's biodiesel to be mixed with 30% of palm oil, to prioritise supply to global and domestic food industries. (Reuters)


Avoid using gas as ‘transition’ fuel in move to clean energy, study urges

Countries should move from coal to renewable energy without shifting to gas as a “transition” fuel to save money, analysis from analytics NGO Transition Zero has found. High gas prices and market volatility have made gas an expensive option despite being long touted as a transition fuel for economies dependent on coal for their power needs. Gas produces less carbon dioxide emissions compared to coal but requires similar centralised infrastructure, and gas-fired power stations only take a couple of years to build. However, high prices for gas, and the plummeting cost of renewable energies such as wind and solar power have reversed that logic. The cost of switching from coal to renewables has plunged by 99% since 2010. (The Guardian)


Starbucks announces fund for reusable & refillable packaging innovation

Coffee giant Starbucks has extended its partnership with environmental charity Hubbub to launch a £1 million fund to support projects that reduce the impact of single-use packaging, such as disposable coffee cups. The ‘Bring It Back Fund’ will aim to accelerate the development of reuse models and remove barriers to the wider use of reusable packaging in the food and beverage industry. The fund will see up to five projects each receive grants of between £150,000 and £300,000. It is feared that efforts to switch to reusable and refillable packaging may have been set back by the pandemic, with one in five people worried about catching Covid-19 from reusable items, despite scant evidence of surface transmission. The fund is looking for innovations that can address barriers to adoption. (Business Green)*


Report finds 1.5 million UK households will struggle to pay future bills

New research estimates 1.5 million households in the UK will struggle to pay food and energy bills over the next year. Conducted by thinktank the National Institute of Economic and Social Research, the research urges the UK Chancellor to do more to prevent people sliding into debt and poverty. The research states that a combination of rising prices and the decision not to scrap a planned rise in National Insurance tax are hitting poorest households hardest. Inflation is also at a 30-year high with the Bank of England warning it may reach 10% within months. The thinktank is urging the government to raise Universal Credit by £25 per week between May and October, which would cost around £1.35 billion, and give £250 each to 11.3 million lower income households. (BBC News)

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