Top Stories

May 12, 2022


Oil majors over-reliant on tech and offsetting to cut emissions

A report published by thinktank Carbon Tracker has found the climate plans and targets of 15 of the world’s largest listed oil and gas firms continue to lack credibility. The report assessed emissions mitigation efforts and plans to deliver targets. All companies examined, except Chevron, have publicly claimed to support the net-zero transition by 2050. However, the report reveals that many net-zero plans do not cover emissions from all scopes and are therefore not science-based. For instance, ExxonMobil does not include Scope 3 emissions in its net-zero plans, despite accounting for 95% of its total emissions. The report also expresses concern that several of the companies are turning to solutions that may have less of a real-world impact, such as buying offsets, selling assets and scaling up carbon capture technology. (edie)


Employers signing up for Living Wage reach 10,000 milestone

More than 10,000 UK employers have now signed up to pay the Living Wage, the voluntary rate suggested by campaign organisation the Living Wage Foundation. The rate is set annually by the foundation with the calculation based on the cost of food, bills and rent. The Foundation said that almost half of that figure (4,500) pledged to pay the rate since March 2020, the start of the pandemic. The Living Wage is £9.90 per hour outside London and £11.05 per hour in London, compared to the statutory minimum rate set by the government of £9.50. Research from Cardiff Business School estimates signatory employers have paid out £1.8 billion in extra wages since the campaign started 20 years ago. More than half of FTSE 100 companies are Living Wage employers. (Personnel Today)


Companies worth more than $38trn now committed to SBTi

More companies set approved science-based climate targets in 2021 than in any other year to date, with companies collectively representing $38 trillion of global market capitalisation now working with the Science-Based Targets Initiative (SBTi). SBTi’s latest annual report confirms that by the end of 2021, 2,253 companies had either committed to having their emission reductions targets verified by SBTi or had already achieved verification. The number of companies in this cohort more than doubled year-on-year. While uptake of science-based targets has been unequal between regions and sectors, the Initiative believes it has now reached “critical mass” for the adoption of verified targets in all key regions. Globally, 27% of companies classed as high-impact in terms of their emissions and their wider influence have now set science-based targets. (edie)


Electric car battery shortage looms in 2025, warns Stellantis

The chief executive of Stellantis – which owns brands including Peurgeot, Vauxhall, Fiat, Chrysler and Jeep – has warned battery shortages could affect the industry as soon as 2025 as the transition towards electric vehicles accelerates. The Stellantis chief executive, Carlos Tavares, argues that current plans for battery production may not address the demand from carmakers as they increase electric car sales in the coming years. The car industry has struggled with persistent shortages of computer chips since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. Tavares claims that battery supply could be the next bottleneck facing the industry, just as carmakers around the world try to accelerate production of electric vehicles. Tavares also warns of geopolitical risks associated with the dependence on minerals mined in countries seen as strategic rivals. (The Guardian)


Billions of pounds of Ukrainian wheat trapped amid food crisis

Some £6.8 billion worth of wheat is trapped in Ukraine unable to be exported because the war has blocked off access to the sea, according to the European Investment Bank. Ukraine was the world's sixth-largest exporter of wheat in 2021, but Russia's invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 has disrupted shipping in the Black Sea, a major route for grains and other commodities. African markets, many of which were already struggling with food shortages, are among the worst-affected, but the United Nations has already warned that the fall in exports could see food prices worldwide rise by up to 22%. The World Food Programme said in April that the cost of a food basket in Ethiopia had risen by 66%, with costs up by 36% in Somalia. (Sky News)





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