Top Stories

November 22, 2022


UN climate chief plans shake-up of COP annual talks after criticism

The recently appointed UN climate chief is planning a shake-up of the annual international summit to ensure it is transparent and produces results after a controversial conclusion to COP27 in Egypt. The summit ended with key participants expressing dissatisfaction with the handling and negotiations, which drew more than 45,000 participants. Some diplomats questioned the integrity of the COP27 presidency, calling it “untransparent, unpredictable and chaotic”. The attendance of more than 600 lobbyists from the fossil fuel industry also provoked complaints from scientist and climate advocacy groups. The UN body intends to provide recommendations to the next presidency held by the United Arab Emirates in 2023. Despite the disappointment, the UNFCCC head said COP27 had not been a failure and that there will be “opportunity for greater performance” at COP28. (Financial Times)*  


Nord Stream gas pipe explosions were sabotage, say investigators

Investigators have discovered traces of explosives and “foreign items” at the point where the Nord Stream gas pipelines sprang dramatic leaks in September. The Swedish Security Service said that its investigation “shows that the pipelines have been subject to gross sabotage”. Prosecutors said the preliminary investigation was “complex and comprehensive” and will in time show whether anyone can be charged. Russia has denied any involvement. Two key gas pipelines designed to bring Russian gas to Europe, Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2, developed leaks within hours of each other, prompting immediate speculation about sabotage. Seismologists reported large explosions at the time the leaks began, adding to speculation about sabotage. Huge volumes of methane leaked from the Nord Stream pipelines, with one estimate claiming it was equivalent to the annual methane emissions of Paris. (New Scientist)


Morgan Stanley IM launches $1b climate private equity strategy

Capital market company Morgan Stanley Investment Management (MSIM) has launched a $1 billion private equity strategy to invest in companies which will remove 1 gigaton of carbon dioxide by 2050. The strategy will also invest in companies that will prevent that amount from entering the atmosphere. Through its 1GT strategy, MSIM will invest in private companies in North America and Europe whose activities aim to collectively prevent or remove 1GT of emissions. Investments will focus on transport, power, sustainable food and agriculture sectors and circular economy and deliver both financial returns and positive environmental impact, MSIM said. The firm added it would also tie some investment team compensation to the emissions performance of its underlying investments. The $1 billion will be in addition to $600 million MSIM has already deployed. (Reuters)


Twitter charity partners condemn Musk's moderation changes

One of social media platform Twitter's most important charity partners says it is considering ending its relationship with the platform because of recent policy changes. Anti-Defamation League (ADL) says Elon Musk's surprise move to reinstate former President Donald Trump's account is "dangerous and inconsistent". It also says allowing Kayne West back on Twitter has "raised concerns". According to ADL, Musk met the civil rights group on the 1st of November to assure them that no one previously banned would be reinstated until he had installed a transparent, clear process that took into consideration the views of civil society. The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), another civil rights organisation cited as a major Twitter partner, is calling for advertisers to boycott the site. (BBC News) 


Nespresso introduces paper-based compostable coffee capsules

Coffee brand Nestlé’s Nespresso has revealed a new range of compostable paper-based coffee capsules. The capsules will be launched in a pilot in France and Switzerland in spring 2023, with plans to roll out to other European countries within a year. The company said the new capsules are being launched following three years of research and development, meeting increasing consumer demand for compostable packaging. Nespresso said that the new capsules are aimed at widening the sustainability choices for consumers, providing an alternative for those with access to composting. Nespresso’s current capsules are made using 80% recycled aluminium, and the company offers over 100,000 aluminium capsule recycle collection points in 70 countries. The company said the capsules utilise proprietary technologies, including a lining to protect the coffee against oxidization. (ESG Today)

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