The zero-emission fuel may exist in abundant reserves below ground. Now large sums are being invested to look for it
For more than a decade, the village of Bourakébougou in western Mali has been powered by a clean energy phenomenon that may soon sweep the globe.
The story begins with a cigarette. In 1987, a failed attempt to drill for water released a stream of odourless gas that one unlucky smoker discovered to be highly flammable. The well was quickly plugged and forgotten. But almost 20 years later, drillers on the hunt for fossil fuels confirmed the accidental discovery: hundreds of feet below the arid earth of west Africa lies an abundance of naturally occurring, or “white”, hydrogen.
Today, it is used to generate green electricity for Bourakébougou’s homes and shops. But geologists believe that untapped reservoirs of white hydrogen in the US, Australia and parts of Europe have the potential to provide the world with clean energy on a far greater scale.
Lyrics of Stop changed to ‘stop right now, no more oil and gas’ because of bank’s fossil fuel funding
Dozens of activists from groups including Fossil Free London and Extinction Rebellion UK began their action less than five minutes into the meeting where its chair, Nigel Higgins, was addressing shareholders at the QEII Centre in Westminster, central London.
A choir was the first to interrupt, with a rendition of the Spice Girls song Stop. Reworking the 90s classic’s lyrics, the group sang: “Stop right now, no more oil and gas, stop burning fossil fuels and end this madness … hey you, burning up the Earth, gotta stop it now baby we have had enough … you dirty, dirty bank.”
This firm is committed to advising clients on better outcomes for the planet. As an example, 20% of funds that we advise on are alternative energy investments.
Our clients, with millions invested in clean energy, are making a real contribution.
Some other funds we support: – Developing better engineering solutions, such as medical devices and prosthetic limbs. – Technology that saves energy by stopping the cold escaping from freezer cabinets in supermarkets. Software solutions to manage risk. – Financing childcare facilities, GP practices ambulances and better care homes.
Britain claims to be at the forefront of the fight against climate change and our scientists and engineers are trusted to provide solutions; your savings and pension pots can make a difference for your children and grandchildren.
Alternative Energy – facts.
The sector offers a range of funds to either provide capital growth, by investing in new developments, windfarms, solar, hydro, anaerobic digestion. Or income generated by buying into long term income contracts, usually 30 years.
Examples of Alternate Energy investments; One provides money to build has returned 84.17% since its launch in June 2019 The other is an income fund gaining profit from long term energy contracts and returned 101,92% since December 2017. NOTE: These are no guarantee of future returns
Coal and gas generation is increasing in cost whilst solar is substantially cheaper. The economic argument for solar is strong.
Despite a study claiming that food-mile emissions are higher than previously thought, eating less animal produce remains much more important than how far your food travels
Eat locally to reduce food miles and your carbon footprint. That is the message promoted by some environmentalists and businesses, but it has long been clear that often this isn’t true – foods that travel thousands of kilometres can have a lower carbon footprint than local produce.
At least, that is what many studies have found. But research published today in the journal Nature Food claims that global food miles account for 20 per cent of food-related emissions – a much higher proportion than reported in earlier work. So do food miles matter more than we thought? Spoiler: no, they don’t.
The production of the food we eat is responsible for more than a third of global greenhouse gas emissions, so reducing food-related emissions is crucial to limiting further global heating. The question is, what should consumers do to help reduce these emissions?
Previous studies have found that the emissions from food miles – the distance that food has to be transported from where it is produced to where it is eaten, measured in kilometres travelled multiplied by the tonnage – are tiny compared with those from growing that food.
Emissions can be calculated based on how the food is transported – by air or by sea, for instance. A study of US diets by researchers at Carnegie Mellon University in Pennsylvania concluded that transporting food from farms to shops produces just 4 per cent of food-related emissions, while a 2018 study of European diets put it at 6 per cent.
What this means is that if you want to reduce the carbon footprint of your diet, you should focus on buying foods with lower overall carbon footprints rather than those that don’t have to travel far. This basically means eating less meat and dairy.
For instance, producing 1 kilogram of beef can emit as much as 99 kg of carbon dioxide or equivalents, and making a kilogram of cheese emits up to 24 kg, compared with 0.9 kg for bananas and 0.4 kg for apples.
In other words, what you eat matters to a far greater extent than where it comes from. What’s more, even with the same food types, local isn’t always better. For instance, if you live in a nation with a cooler climate where tomatoes can be grown only using heated greenhouses, these local tomatoes will typically have a higher carbon footprint than those shipped in from a warmer country where no heating is needed.
The latest study doesn’t overturn any of this. For starters, the main reason why it concludes that food miles account for such a high proportion of food-related emissions is that the 20 per cent figure includes all the transport involved, including that of fertilisers, farm equipment and pesticides, not just the transport of food.
“Our study looks at the entire supply chain for food consumption, and naturally non-food commodities are part of it,” says team member Mengyu Li at the University of Sydney in Australia.
It is worthwhile to estimate this, but the team should use a term other than “food miles” to avoid confusion, rather than redefining the existing term, says Hannah Ritchie at the University of Oxford, who is head of research at Our World in Data.
If the standard definition were applied to the numbers in the study, food miles would account for only 9 per cent of food-related emissions, says Ritchie. That is much closer to previous research, though she thinks it is still an overestimate.
What’s more, the study itself calculates that even if it were possible to produce all food in the countries where it is eaten, food-related emissions would fall by only 1.7 per cent overall. This is because although food wouldn’t travel as far, more of it would be transported by road instead of sea, says Li, and trucks produce higher emissions per tonne of cargo than ships.
“So, overall, the bottom line is still that what you eat has a much bigger impact on emissions than the distance that food has to travel to reach you,” says Ritchie.
The UN secretary general has told new university graduates not to take up careers with the “climate wreckers” – companies that drive the extraction of fossil fuels.
António Guterres addressed thousands of graduates at Seton Hall University in New Jersey, US, on Tuesday. “You must be the generation that succeeds in addressing the planetary emergency of climate change,” he said. “Despite mountains of evidence of looming climate catastrophe, we still see mountains of funding for coal and fossil fuels that are killing our planet.
“But we know investing in fossil fuels is a dead end – no amount of greenwashing or spin can change that. So we must put them on notice: accountability is coming for those who liquidate our future.”
He added: “You hold the cards. Your talent is in demand from multinational companies and big financial institutions. You will have plenty of opportunities to choose from. My message to you is simple: don’t work for climate wreckers. Use your talents to drive us towards a renewable future.”
Guterres has become increasingly outspoken on the climate crisis in recent months, telling world leaders in April: “Our addiction to fossil fuels is killing us.”
Caroline Dennett tells staff in video she made decision because of ‘double-talk on climate’
A senior safety consultant has quit working with Shell after 11 years, accusing the fossil fuel producer in a bombshell public video of causing “extreme harms” to the environment.
Caroline Dennett claimed Shell had a “disregard for climate change risks” and urged others in the oil and gas industry to “walk away while there’s still time”.
The executive, who works for the independent agency Clout, ended her working relationship with Shell in an open letter to its executives and 1,400 employees. In an accompanying video, posted on LinkedIn, she said she had quit because of Shell’s “double-talk on climate”.
Environmental campaigners are suing the Dutch airline KLM over “greenwashing” adverts they say misleadingly promote the sustainability of flying.
Lawyers from ClientEarth are supporting Fossielvrij NL, a Netherlands-based campaign group, to bring a claim that KLM’s ad campaigns give a false impression of the sustainability of its flights and its plans to address its impact on the climate.
“KLM’s marketing misleads consumers into believing that its flights won’t worsen the climate emergency. But this is a myth,” said Hiske Arts, a campaigner at Fossielvrij NL.
“Unchecked flying is one of the fastest ways to heat up the planet. Customers need to be informed and protected from claims that suggest otherwise.”
Activists from Fossielvrij NL submitted a pre-action letter to Air France KLM, KLM’s parent company, during its AGM in Paris on Tuesday. Their legal action takes aim at KLM’s “Fly Responsibly” campaign, which presents the airline as “creating a more sustainable future”.
The system of executive pay is “broken”, the Church of England’s pension board has said, as it challenged more companies to ease the pain of soaring inflation by committing to paying workers the living wage.
Frustrated with the Australian government’s inaction on climate change, software king Mike Cannon-Brookes is trying to buy several big coal plants so he can shut them down in favour of renewables
Mike Cannon-Brookes, the third-richest person in Australia, has launched an audacious bid to buy the country’s biggest electricity company – and shut its coal-fired power plants. It is a bold approach to decarbonisation, but can he pull it off?
Australia currently produces the highest carbon emissions per capita in the world from burning coal for power generation. The country’s government is highly attached to fossil fuels. Not long before becoming the current prime minister, Scott Morrison brought a lump of coal to parliament and announced: “This is coal. Don’t be afraid, don’t be scared, it won’t hurt you.”
Cannon-Brookes, co-founder of software giant Atlassian, has been a vocal critic of the government’s climate inaction. Now, he is using his net worth of A$20 billion to try to take matters into his own hands.
Most comprehensive scientific analysis to date finds words are not matched by actions
The research, published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal, examined the records of ExxonMobil, Chevron, Shell and BP, which together are responsible for more than 10% of global carbon emissions since 1965. The researchers analysed data over the 12 years up to 2020 and concluded the company claims do not align with their actions, which include increasing rather than decreasing exploration
As Good Money Week 2020 begins, the ninth Good Investment Review finds that sustainable funds have outperformed the sector average over the last five years – and in particular throughout the coronavirus crisis.
Since 2015, the ethical UK equity funds monitored in the review have brought average returns of 25.76 per cent compared with 16.52 per cent for all funds in the sector. Meanwhile, the ethical global equity funds monitored have returned an average of 85.23 per cent compared with 76.12 per cent for the sector.
In the eight months to October 2020, 12 of the 15 ethical UK equity funds studied performed better than the market average (80 per cent), as did 41 out of the 56 global ethical funds (73 per cent).
The October 2020 review reveals that despite the financial turmoil of the global pandemic, ‘assets under management’ held within funds with an ethical or sustainable label in the UK have continued to rise, reaching a whopping £158 billion – up 14 per cent from the previous six months.
The rise represents further evidence of the surge in interest in investing for positive impact or with environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors in mind.
John Fleetwood, founder of 3D Investing (now part of Square Mile Consulting and Research), said: “The evidence shows that positive impact need not come at the expense of financial returns, and if anything, investing for positive impact can improve returns.”
The latest review covers developments in methodology for measuring ethical and sustainable funds, and attempts to clear up some of the confusion over the different terminology used to describe them.
There is must-read commentary from some of the UK’s top ethical and sustainable fund managers.
The Review rates funds that have an ethical or sustainable approach according to how well they do what they say on the tin.
I offer this reminder, as I am often asked about the need to pay National Insurance and the most appropriate way to achieve full benefits. It is easy to check your personal account on line.
the State Pension changed in April 2016.
if you reached State Pension Age before April 2016, you needed to
have National Insurance contributions or credits for 30 years to receive the
if you reached State Pension age prior to April 2016, the State
pension is made up of the Basic Old Age Pension and the Additional State
Pension; otherwise known as State Second Pension (S2P), State Earnings Related
Pension (SERPS) or the Graduated Retirement Benefit.
Those who enter the National Insurance system on or after 6 April
2016, will need to have a minimum of 10 years National Insurance contributions
or credits to qualify for a State Pension. To receive the full pension, they
will need to have National Insurance contributions or credits of 35 years. For
everyone else, transitional rules apply.
Clearly most of us do not rely on the State Pension and the
question is how much additional funding is needed to achieve a realistic income
at the time you plan to stop earning or reduce your working
Most people are shocked once they look at the levels of funding
necessary, which means that you can either choose to fund to the desired outcome
or delay your plans. Most importantly start early and fund realistically but
also take the opportunity to get a realistic
Pension funding is still the most tax efficient way for all but
basic rate tax payers, with Stocks and Shares ISAs used for anyone who is
currently a basis rate tax payer.
One important warning, Cash ISAs give a return less than inflation
and the only tax benefit is that the small amount of interest is tax free.
They do not make financial sense for medium and long-term savings.
Inflation is expected to run at about 2.5% in the foreseeable future. Stocks and Shares ISAs are exposed to market
fluctuations but rarely give a negative return in the longer