Fossil fuels

DEFINITION: A natural fuel such as coal or gas that were formed from the remains of living organisms millions of years ago. Fossil fuels are non-renewable energy resources which are harmful for the environment because they release carbon dioxide when they burn.

See also: Greenhouse gas

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Reaching the EU’s 2030 climate goal will require a significant build-up in the production of renewable electricity, which is needed to feed the electrolysers generating green hydrogen

EU's green hydrogen plans hailed as 'true game-changer' by industry

The European Commission boosted regulatory support for green hydrogen in its proposed overhaul of climate legislation published last week, with the renewable hydrogen coalition calling it "a true game changer" for the nascent EU industry.

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edie launches new business guide on net-zero carbon heating

edie has today (7 April) launched a new guide detailing everything businesses need to know and consider when looking to decarbonise heating in line with the net-zero movement.

Green groups claim the decision is against efforts to champion climate action in the build up to COP26

'Outrageous hypocrisy': Government condemned over £16bn oil and gas sector 'bailout'

Green groups have expressed their anger at the Government's new £16bn sector deal that pledges to align the oil and gas sector with the national net-zero target, while also ending financing for overseas fossil fuel projects, with many frustrated by a refusal to end oil and gas licensing.

Renewables were affected by supply chain shocks and decreased investment, but growth as a proportion of the energy mix outpaced fossil fuels year-on-year for the first time

UK's fossil fuel generation reached a record low in 2020, as renewables reached new heights

The UK Government has released new data on energy generation and consumption during 2020, revealing that fossil fuel generation plummeted to new lows as demand dipped due to Covid-19 restrictions affecting the transport sector.

WGS claims that, across the entire production lifecycle, the biogas reduces carbon emissions by more than 95%

Glenfiddich to power delivery trucks with onsite biogas fuelling stations

Scotch whisky brand Glenfiddich has introduced fuelling stations at a distillery in Scotland to enable parts of its fleet to run on biogas made from the residues of its own distilling process.

Scottish Widows research found that 56% of defined benefit (DB) pension savers would consider investing their pension funds in clean, fossil fuel-free energy

Scottish Widows 'reboots' £250m environment fund to screen against fossil fuels

Scottish Widows has launched a 'rebooted' Environmental Fund that will give six million customers the chance to invest in "great green" British businesses, while screening against exposure to fossil fuels.

edie summarises how the world can reach net-zero emissions by 2050, according to BNEF

How the world can reach net-zero emissions by 2050, according to BloombergNEF

BloombergNEF has published its latest New Energy Outlook report, examining three progress pathways to reach net-zero globally by 2050. Here, edie summaries what will need to change to deliver this low-carbon trajectory.

All of the state-owned businesses and major corporates analysed have increased either oil or gas production, or both, since 2014

Report: Oil and gas companies set to eat up 80% of global carbon budget

The oil and gas sector is set to burn through some 80% of the total global carbon budget the world will need to stick to if the Paris Agreement's 1.5C trajectory is to be realised, a major new report has revealed.

Pictured: The San Juan Generating Station, one of the US's 241 coal-fired power plants

G20 nations have funnelled $3.3trn into fossil fuel subsidies since 2015, BNEF reveals

G20 member countries collectively allocated subsidies topping $3.3trn to the oil, coal, gas and fossil-fuelled electricity generation sectors between 2015 and 2019 - a level incompatible with the Paris Agreement.

Currently, Shell is aiming to reduce the carbon intensity of its products by 20% by 2030

Shell to appeal court ruling compelling it to set more ambitious climate targets

Royal Dutch Shell has confirmed plans to appeal a court ruling ordering the energy major to set stronger targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The sustainability report claims that “just one of our inert anode cells can generate the same volume of oxygen as 70 hectares of forest”

EN+ Group turns to oxygen-producing method to decarbonise aluminium

Aluminium and hydropower giant EN+ Group has built on a target to reach net-zero emissions by 2050 by also confirming the development of the world's lowest carbon aluminium from inert anode technologies.

Pictured: Solar panels being installed on a farm in India

Report: Global demand for fossil-fuel-fired electricity has peaked

After demand for fossil fuels for electricity generation peaked across developed markets in 2007, it has now peaked across developing markets as well, according to a new report.

Persil, Comfort, Sunlight, Surf and Seventh Generation formulations with the enzymes will be tested 

Unilever eyes optimised enzymes in bid for fossil-fuel-free laundry products

Unilever has announced a new partnership with protein design start-up Arzeda, which will see it test new enzymes in cleaning and laundry products in order to lower their carbon footprint.

Businesses believe the East Coast Cluster can capture, transport and store up to 27 million tonnes of carbon emissions annually by 2030

East Coast Cluster: Teesside and Humber gear up to host CCS technologies

Energy giants and businesses operating in Teesside and Humberside look set to collaborate on the deployment of carbon capture usage and storage (CCUS) technology in a bid to create net-zero industrial clusters.

As few as six materials, including concrete and steel, account for 70% of the construction-related embodied carbon

Report: Built environment failing to account for lifecycle emissions of projects

Businesses operating in the built environment sector have been called upon to adopt a whole lifecycle approach to assessing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, with a new report finding that less than 1% of global building projects currently calculate and report on lifecycle emissions.

So far the European Commission has endorsed nine recovery plans from EU countries

Recovery plans fall short of EU green spending goals, campaigners warn

As the European Commission starts endorsing national recovery plans submitted by EU countries, campaigners are growing concerned that the EU executive may not fully enforce the fund's green spending target.

Enabling policies could also support up to 60,000 new jobs in the sector

Biogas sector spells out role in helping UK reach net-zero emissions

Almost 50 organisations have supported a declaration sent to the Prime Minister outlining how the biogas sector can support the net-zero ambition, provided clear and enabling policies are introduced.

The retailer has committed to moving its entire heavy goods vehicle (HGV) fleet from diesel to gas by 2024

Asda reduces emissions by 16% over 12-month period

Supermarket giant Asda has reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 16% over the last year, as it builds towards a net-zero carbon goal set for 2040.

The Group will also upskill employees to educate them on new climate-related initiatives as they are introduced

Addo Food Group targets net-zero emissions by 2035

The owner of food brands such as Wall's, Bowyers and Pork Farms has announced its intention to reach net-zero emissions by 2035 by setting science-based targets across its whole value chain in line with the 1.5C ambition of the Paris Agreement.

Hundreds of shareholder motions on climate have been filed this year already

'Votes have jumped dramatically': Why investors are pressing companies to accelerate climate action

The 2021 AGM season saw a flurry of climate-related shareholder resolutions being filed - and passed - at the world's biggest banks and fossil fuel majors. Here, edie interviews the architects of these resolutions to get an inside look at their development and growing success.

Policy loopholes need to be closed urgently to shift the world in favour of low-carbon energy at a pace needed to deliver net-zero, REN21 is warning

Report: Global fossil fuel use not yet in decline, despite renewable energy pledges

Fossil fuels accounted for some 80% of global final energy consumption in 2019, the same share of the energy mix as a decade ago, a major new report has revealed.

The best performer, the DAX 30, still failed to meet Paris Agreement requirements, with a 2.2C temperature trajectory

G7 nations failing to align major stock indexes with climate commitments, report reveals

None of the largest stock indexes operating in G7 nations are aligned with either of the Paris Agreement on climate change's two pathways, according to new research out today (10 June).

If the same pace of investment is maintained, peak oil will happen “around 2030,” according to CMS Research

Study: World set to hit 'peak oil' by 2030 as energy majors shift to renewables

The world's largest oil and gas companies increased investment in clean energy by 34% in 2020, despite a 6% fall in global energy demand caused by the coronavirus pandemic, according to new research.

Image: XR South East UK

UK urged to end new oil and gas licencing as Extinction Rebellion protestors target BP

More than 50 environmental charities and campaign groups are urging the UK Government to ban new oil and gas licencing either at the G7 Summit this month, or ahead of COP26 in November.

HSBC must now publish a plan outlining its new phase-out policy

Shareholders pass vote for HSBC to phase-out global coal financing by 2040

Shareholders of HSBC have today passed a proposed management resolution that commits the bank to phase-out financing for the coal industry by 2040 worldwide, following successful campaigning from investors.

After BP shareholders rejected a climate motion earlier this month, several other major players will now be forced to strengthen targets 

Climate activists appointed to ExxonMobil board as Chevron shareholders back stronger emissions goals

Shareholder motions filed by climate activists have passed at US fossil fuel giants ExxonMobil and Chevron, with disgruntled investors clearly keen to see more ambitious emissions reduction targets.

Currently, Shell is aiming to reduce the carbon intensity of its products by 20% by 2030

Dutch court orders Shell to strengthen carbon reduction targets

A Dutch court has ordered a groundbreaking ruling for Royal Dutch Shell to raise its commitments to carbon reduction, in what could mark the first of many legal cases against energy firms on climate grounds.

McCormick has partnered with Natural Capital Partners to offset any remaining emissions

Manufacturer McCormick's first net-zero building set for Peterborough

Multinational food ingredients manufacturer McCormick has confirmed that a new facility in Peterborough looks set to become its first net-zero carbon building.

Viridor is aiming to have the technology installed and running at its Runcorn site (pictured) by 2026

Viridor targets net-negative emissions by 2045 through carbon capture technology

Waste management firm Viridor has committed to becoming a net-zero emissions business by 2040 and to then move further by reaching net-negative emissions five years later.

Campaigners claimed that Shell's plans could only cut emissions by 10% by 2030, in absolute terms

Shell shareholders vote against climate activists' net-zero plans

Royal Dutch Shell received overwhelming backing for its own energy transition strategy at its AGM today (18 May), but a shareholder resolution that would have forced accelerated climate action did not pass.

Chemical companies, oil majors, banks and investors all come under fire in the new report

Beyond retail: Banks and fossil fuel giants urged to face role in plastic pollution crisis

Just 20 businesses are responsible for half of the world's single-use plastic waste, with fossil fuel majors including ExxonMobil and Total among the worst offenders, a new study has revealed.

Pictured: St Andrew's Church, a Church of England location in Surrey

'Care for creation': Fossil fuel divestment promised by dozens of major faith institutions

The Church in Wales, Diocese of Bristol and Diocese of Oxford are among a group of 36 faith institutions to have jointly committed to divesting from fossil fuels, stating that they have a moral imperative to help combat the climate crisis.

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edie kicks off new COP26 Primer report series with Clean Energy focus

As part of the brand-new Countdown to COP26 Festival of digital content and events, edie has this week launched a series of "Primer Reports" which provide need-to-know insights into the key themes of this year's crucial climate talks. First up: Clean Energy.

HGVs account for 4.2% of UK carbon emissions

Royal Mail to add 29 biogas HGVs to delivery fleet

Royal Mail is adding 29 biogas-powered trucks to its fleet in a bid to reduce emissions while saving costs on fuel, while it has been confirmed that the world's largest biofuel station is set to open in Bristol this year.

Pictured: A semi-submersible oil rig off the coast of Aberdeenshire 

'Unlawful and irrational': UK Government taken to court over oil and gas subsidies

Environmental campaigners have launched a legal challenge against the UK Government, arguing that its continued support for expanding oil and gas production in the North Sea is incompatible with its climate laws and commitment to 'levelling up'.

Compass Group has become a signatory of Business Ambition for 1.5°C

Food services firm Compass targets net-zero emissions by 2030

The UK's largest food services company, Compass Group UK & Ireland, will switch to 100% electric vehicles (EVs), move 40% of its food offerings to plant-based proteins and will launch a £1m carbon reduction fund in a bid to reach net-zero emissions by 2030.

PLFs are found in products including paint, cosmetics, shampoos and adhesives. They are classed as 'low environmental concern' in terms of toxicity, but bear a high carbon footprint and are hard-to-recycle. 

Consumer goods giants team up for greener chemicals drive

Unilever and Crown Paints are among the members of a new task force exploring how to make the polymers commonly used in consumer products - often based on fossil fuel derivatives - more sustainable.

Green groups are concerned that Barclays' investors are potentially less engaged with climate issues than they were last year

Barclays shareholders reject resolution on fossil fuel phase-out

Despite continued campaigning from non-profits, activists and investors, Barclays' shareholders have rejected a proposal that would require the bank to reduce fossil fuel finance on climate grounds.

After this year's Budget and the first 'Tax Day', further announcements are due in the second half of the year

MPs accuse Treasury and HMRC of shirking climate responsibilities

The Treasury and HMRC are failing to respond to a "climate storm breaking all around us", failing to make the necessary changes to tax systems and short-term funding packages needed for the 'just' transition to net-zero.

BlackRock now manages more than $200bn in long-term sustainable strategies

BlackRock launches temperature-aligned investments funds

The world's largest investor BlackRock has unveiled two new temperature-based exchange funds aimed at helping investors align portfolios with the pathways of the Paris Agreement.

Coal and gas demands could be higher this year than in 2019, but oil is set for a far slower recovery

Global energy emissions set to rebound as Covid-19 lockdowns lift, IEA warns

Global energy demand is rebounding rapidly from the Covid-19-related slump, with fossil fuels set to play a major role in meeting this demand, the International Energy Agency (IEA) is warning.

Solar costs have fallen by an average of 18% every year since 2010 with wind prices down 9% annually

Report: Solar and wind can meet global energy demand 100 times over

The tumbling costs of wind and solar can unlock demand that could power the world 100 times over, with a new report from think tank Carbon Tracker finding that renewables are set to push fossil fuels out of the electricity mix by the mid-2030s.

The LEAF initiative aims to mobilise at least $1bn to support emissions reductions by ensuring tropical forests that act as carbon sinks are protected from deforestation

Amazon and Unilever among businesses teaming with governments on $1bn deforestation pledge

A group of businesses including Amazon, Unilever, and Nestlé has joined the UK, US and Norwegian governments in setting up a new public-private initiative committing $1bn to combat the climate crisis through the conservation and preservation of tropical forests across the globe.

The target will become enshrined in law by the end of June 2021

Sixth Carbon Budget: UK to reduce emissions by 78% by 2035

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has agreed to legislate a new target to reduce national emissions by 78% by 2035, including emissions from international shipping and aviation, following the Climate Change Committee's advice on the Sixth Carbon Budget.

Coal accounted for almost 58% of China's energy generation pre-pandemic

Report: China's carbon neutrality goal only achievable with major coal phase-out

If China is to meet its 2060 ambition of carbon neutrality, announced last year, it must shut hundreds of gigawatts of coal generation and reform emissions trading as a priority, a new report has revealed.

The net-zero commitments cover business operations, digital infrastructure and the sector’s historic emissions

Crypto Climate Accord aims for 100% renewables and net-zero digital currency by 2040

A new global accord has been set up to align the swelling cryptocurrency market with the ambitions of the Paris Agreement by ensuring that blockchain and energy-intensive currency mining systems are powered by renewables and reach net-zero emissions by 2040.

UK peatlands store more than three billion tonnes of carbon

Co-op bans sale of peat-based compost to reduce emissions

Retailer Co-op has introduced a ban on peat-based compost in a bid to help customers reduce their greenhouse gas emissions footprint and reach its own carbon commitments.

A drop in energy demand and increased uptake in renewables are accountable for parts of the decline

Emissions covered by EU pricing markets fell 12% in 2020

Emissions regulated under the European Union's (EU) carbon market decreased by more than 12% last year, with the coronavirus severely limiting energy demand and industrial output.

The UK government imposed a moratorium on fracking in England in 2019. Scotland and Wales have moratoria in place against hydraulic fracturing.

Fracking ban should continue for UK to meet net-zero, CCC warns

The Climate Change Committee (CCC) has told the UK Government that restrictions on onshore fracking for shale gas must be continued until scientists have a better understanding of its full environmental impact.

The report shows how fossil fuel investments have begun to underperform, while renewable energy investments increasingly outperform

Report: Investors ditching fossil fuel stocks as value drops by billions of dollars

The value of share offerings in fossil fuel firms has plummeted by $123bn since 2012, a new report has revealed.

The 10.7% reduction is the largest proportional fall in UK greenhouse gas emissions in a single year 

Covid-19 sees carbon emissions fall 10% in 2020 as UK nears half-way mark to net-zero

The impacts of the coronavirus pandemic delivered an estimated 10.7% reduction in carbon emissions in 2020, with total greenhouse gas emissions almost 50% lower than they were in 1990, the baseline year for the UK's net-zero target.

Pictured: Oxford, UK

UK cities leading the way on net-zero and renewable energy, report finds

Almost three-quarters (73%) of the UK's urban population live in towns and cities with net-zero targets and/or strong local policies on renewable energy, compared to a global average of just 25%.

Swiss Re's UK headquarters are located within the Gherkin (pictured)

'Systematic climate approach': Swiss Re plots global coal phase-out by 2040

Insurance and reinsurance giant Swiss Re has announced new climate targets for financed emissions and pledged to stop serving the global coal sector by 2040.

Money needs to be re-aligned in order to stimulate this demand

IRENA: Existing solutions can spur progress to net-zero

Global power sourced from renewables is set to treble by 2050, with wind, solar and hydrogen all required to account for 90% of all decarbonisation solutions to push the global economy towards the 1.5C pathway, a new report from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has found.

The resolution will be put to a vote in May at HSBC’s AGM

HSBC to vote on phase-out of fossil fuel funding

HSBC will propose a new commitment to completely phase-out financing of coal-fired power and thermal coal mines by 2040 globally, following negotiations with a group of investors with $2.4tn in assets under management.

SWR has committed to reducing the energy consumption of its building portfolio by 41% by 2024

LED retrofit reduces energy use by 21% for South Western Railway

South Western Railway (SWR) has delivered a 21% reduction in the energy consumption of its properties, following the installation of more than 16,000 LED light fittings across its properties.

Almost one-quarter of the directors analysed have a close link to the fossil fuel sector

'Climate conflict': 4 in 5 UK bank directors have connections to high-emitting corporates

An analysis of the activities of directors at the UK's biggest banks has revealed that almost 80% have close ties to corporates in industries linked to climate change and pollution - which could undermine their net-zero commitments.

The IPCC has stated that achieving the Paris Agreement's 1.5C pathway will require net global emissions to reach zero by 2050

US takes step towards 2050 net-zero target with sweeping climate bill

A wide-ranging climate bill has been introduced to the US House of Representatives this week that, if passed, will commit the nation to net-zero by 2050.

The EU's Green New Deal is meant to see the EIB becoming 'the climate bank' for the bloc

EIB spent €890m on fossil gas since phase out pledge, activists say

The European Investment Bank (EIB) has invested €890m in gas projects since it pledged to phase out investments into fossil fuels by 2022, contradicting the bank's "gas is over" narrative, activists say.

The requests reveal the pension investment trends of more than 80 UK councils

As Trinity College Cambridge divests, UK council pensions still hold £10bn in fossil fuels

Freedom of information requests by environmental campaigners have revealed that UK local government pensions held almost £10bn in fossil fuel companies last year, despite the trend towards climate emergency declarations.

The success of the transition would hinge on enabling policies and roadmaps, steered by the UK Government

UK can create 200,000 jobs through clean technology drive

The Association for Renewable Energy and Clean Technology (REA) has claimed that the UK can reach 100% renewable electricity in the next 11 years, with clean technology uptake set to create 200,000 new jobs provided the Government can deliver enabling policies.

Like many fossil fuel majors, Shell has significantly changed business plans in the wake of the IPCC's landmark report and, latterly, Covid-19

Shell reaches peak oil and emissions as it plots net-zero pathway

Shell has published an updated business strategy in light of the Covid-19 pandemic and its pledge to reach net-zero emissions, which confirms that 2019 will be its peak in terms of oil production.

The report argues that legislation is needed to stop fast fashion's negative environmental impact from spiralling 

Fast fashion: Polyester production has doubled since 2000, with huge climate implications

The production of fossil-based synthetic textiles has doubled globally within 20 years, as fast fashion production and consumption has increased. According to a new report, this will have sizeable implications for climate change.

A host of green finance experts met virtually on day one of the Sustainability Leaders Forum

Finance and policy: The external drivers forcing businesses to take climate action

Sustainability professionals have often found frustration when trying to embed CSR across an entire organisation, but the mainstreaming of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) investing looks set to create new momentum behind the green recovery.

Along with Barclays, HSBC has often been the target of environmental campaigners

Survey: UK banks could lose millions of customers unless they get tougher on climate

A survey of more than 2,000 bank customers in the UK has found that more than one in ten would switch banks if they thought their choice of company was investing heavily in fossil fuels. The impact could be significant for big high-street brands, that could lose millions of customers each.

Wind output grew as coal, gas and nuclear declined

Report: Renewables overtook fossil fuels as UK's main electricity source in 2020

Renewables generated a record 42% of the UK's electricity in 2020, while fossil fuels accounted for 41% of electricity generation, according to a major new analysis.

Pictured: Solar panels on an Ikea store in Sydney, Australia 

Ikea surpasses renewable energy generation milestone after installing 920,000 solar panels

Ikea's parent company Ingka Group generated more renewable energy that it consumed last year, marking a milestone on its vision to become a "planet-positive" business.

The Biden Administration is expected to reverse more than 100 climate-related policies introduced by Trump

Biden signs flurry of executive orders on nature conservation and fossil fuels

After re-committing the US to the Paris Agreement last week, President Biden has this week signed a string of executive orders around nature conservation and minimising emissions from the energy sector.

The bank doubled its corporate bond programme in response to Covid-19. Image: George Rex, CC BY SA

Bank of England's high-carbon financing a 'moral hazard', MPs warn

The Bank of England risks creating 'moral hazard' by continuing to finance high-carbon projects and companies and providing no-strings-attached financing to carbon intensives companies, the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) has warned.

Pictured: A CGI mock-up of the proposed plant. Image: Drax

Legal bid to stop UK from building Europe's biggest gas-fired power plant fails

The Court of Appeal has thrown out a legal challenge to the UK Government's decision to grant planning permission for Drax's major new gas-fired power plant.

Pictured: An artist's impression of the completed mine. Image: West Cumbria Mining Company 

Kwasi Kwarteng admits 'tension' between UK's new coal mine and climate ambitions

BEIS Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng has admitted that the Government's decision not to intervene with the planning process for a new coal mine in Cumbria is at odds with its domestic climate targets and the messages it wants to send as COP26 host.

The IEA is highlighting how methane leaks have environmental and financial costs - and how regulation is likely to get toucher in the near future

IEA: Oil and gas sector must 'lock in' methane emissions reductions seen amid Covid-19 lockdowns

Methane emissions from the global oil and gas industry fell 10% year-on-year in 2020, the International Energy Agency (IEA) has revealed. But the body believes this is mostly because of lockdown restrictions, rather than heightened environmental ambitions.

The net-zero ambition will be delivered through the creation of an internal “climate change taskforce” led by chief operation officer Vyacheslav Solomin

EN+ Group commits to net-zero by 2050

Aluminium and hydropower giant EN+ Group has announced its intention to become a net-zero business by 2050, with a target also in place to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 35% by 2030.

Gas and renewables have proven more resilient to the impacts of the pandemic than oil

McKinsey: Global fossil fuel demand will peak in 2027

One of the world's largest consultancies has published analysis outlining how global fossil fuel demand could peak by 2027. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic accelerating trends in electrification and energy efficiency.

In action: the world's first fully commercial carbon capture and utilisation plant

Carbon Clean – in partnership with Tuticorin Alkali Chemicals and Fertilizers Limited (TFL) – has been operating the world’s first low-cost, industrial-scale carbon capture and utilisation (CCU) plant in India since October 2016. Take a look inside the project with this new download.

Pictured: Drax's power station in North Yorkshire, where two coal units will close later this year. Image: Drax/ A.Chadwick

UK's coal power spikes amid cold snap, despite 'greenest year on record' for electricity in 2020

Coal and gas have routinely accounted for 60% of electricity generation in Britain over the past week, sparking concerns around the nation's ability to maintain energy security in a low-carbon manner during winter weather conditions.

If the new resolution receives more than 75% of votes at the bank’s upcoming AGM in April, HSBC would be required to publish a strategy

Investors file climate resolution at HSBC

Investors with a combined $2.4trn in assets under management have filed a resolution at HSBC, calling on the bank to publish a strategy that outlines efforts to reduce exposure to fossil fuel assets.

For oil and gas firms, Scope 3 sources can account for some 80% of annual emissions on an absolute basis

ExxonMobil discloses emissions of oil and gas product use for the first time

ExxonMobil has disclosed the full extent of its Scope 3 (indirect) emissions from the final use of its energy products, which are more than Canada's national annual emissions.

marine and airborne monitor and offshore floating wind will be championed through the funding

Government commits £200m innovation fund to tackle Covid-19 and climate crisis

Computers capable of tracking diseases and a floating offshore wind test lab are just two of the technologies to benefit from a new £213m government investment pot that aims to upgrade scientific approaches to combatting Covid-19 and the climate crisis.

Environment ministers want more done to guarantee renewable production and to support local businesses in the hydrogen supply chain

Five EU countries object to bloc's latest hydrogen 'manifesto'

Austria, Denmark, Luxembourg, Portugal and Spain have issued a joint letter calling on the EU to clearly prioritise renewable energies under an EU-led project aiming to accelerate hydrogen deployment, research and infrastructure.

The UK's oil and gas sector employs 270,000+ people and pays £350m+ in taxes annually

UK's oil and gas sector outlines net-zero vision, but remains reluctant to downsize

The watchdog for the UK's oil and gas industry has published a strategy designed to align businesses with the 2050 net-zero target, but green groups want more done to cap production and increase investment in renewables.

Lloyds of London's members have previously supported projects like the Adani thermal coal mine in Australia 

Lloyds of London finally agrees to divest from coal

Insurance giant Lloyds of London has promised to end investment in coal, oil sands and fossil fuel exploration in the Arctic, following years a pressure from climate campaigners.

The Treasury reiterates that net-zero is “essential” in delivering long-term prosperity

Net-zero impact on UK economy to be 'relatively small', Treasury finds

The HM Treasury has published a final report in the build-up to a Net-Zero Spending Review, claiming that the transition to meeting the UK's long-term climate goals could deliver "slightly positive or slightly negative" economic growth for the UK, depending on how decisive policy action is.

Exxon said it would prefer to develop short-term goals than developing a long-term net-zero vision

ExxonMobil's new climate targets slammed by investors and green groups

US-based oil major ExxonMobil has outlined new emissions reduction targets through to 2025, but green groups have called them "woefully inadequate" and investors are pushing for a restructure to its board of directors.

The White Paper builds on the Ten Point Plan and National Infrastructure Strategy

Five things you need to know about the Energy White Paper

After months of delays, the UK Government finally unveiled its Energy White Paper on Monday (14 December) detailing how an overhaul to transport, energy and infrastructure will deliver an "overwhelmingly decarbonised power in the 2030s" on the road to net-zero by 2050.

The Chancellor announced in March the UKEF would receive an additional £2bn to finance clean energy projects overseas

UK Government to end support for overseas fossil fuel projects

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has confirmed that the UK Government will end financing and support for overseas fossil fuel projects in the build-up to COP26 in 2021.

CCC chair Lord Deben said many high-emitting industries will need to become "wholly different"

'A game-changer': UK's green economy leaders react to the Sixth Carbon Budget

Green groups and trade bodies have broadly welcomed the Climate Change Committee's Sixth Carbon Budget, headlined by a recommendation to cut annual emissions by 78% by 2035. But they want to see the Government act rapidly and boldly to prove it can deliver.

Pictured: Uniper's gas storage plant in Etzel, Germany

Uniper targets carbon neutrality by 2050, outlines coal-free vision

German multinational energy giant Uniper has pledged to achieve carbon neutrality across its global business by 2050, outlining new goals around coal phase-outs and green hydrogen.

The UK's oil and gas sector represents 230,000 onshore jobs and 30,000 offshore roles

Green recovery: UK urged to accelerate 'just' transition from North Sea oil and gas

With thousands of UK-based oil and gas workers on furlough and the sector's economic recovery likely to be slow, policymakers are facing calls to cap North Sea fossil fuel production and reskill communities for low-carbon industries.

The new target meets the recommendation of the Climate Change Committee 

UK to slash emissions by 68% by 2030, as part of Paris Agreement NDC

The UK Government will aim to reduce emissions by 68% by 2030, as part of a domestic action plan that will deliver the nation's contribution towards the Paris Agreement and limiting global temperature increases to well below 2C and build towards net-zero by 2050.

The report warns that failure to support the already struggling sector could result in the UK becoming a buyer, rather than supplier, of green energy and technology

North Sea energy sector requires 'urgent investment' to reach net-zero

Investment into net-zero technologies such as floating offshore wind and clean hydrogen could capture up to £125bn in annual benefits from the North Sea energy sector, but a new report has warned that jobs in the area could fall by at least 20% without incentivising policies.

The latest draft text, obtained by EURACTIV, “significantly weakens the priority given to renewable hydrogen,”

Renewable or 'low-carbon'? EU countries face off over hydrogen

EU member states are fighting over which type of hydrogen to support, with two opposing camps facing off: those backing green hydrogen produced exclusively from renewable electricity, and those in favour of a broader "low-carbon" definition, which also includes nuclear power and decarbonised gases.

Growth will be delivered by a rollout of the Vegetarian Butcher, which Unilever acquired in 2018. In addition, more vegan options for brands such as Hellmann’s, Magnum and Wall’s will be introduced

Unilever to halve food waste, sets €1bn sales target for plant-based food alternatives

Consumer goods giant Unilever has unveiled a new "future foods" strategy that will see the company commit to halving food waste, improving nutritional standards and set a €1bn sales target for plant-based meat and dairy alternatives.

Continual emissions reductions are needed to meet net-zero, but recovery from the pandemic will likely see an increase

Emissions from energy sector likely to rebound from Covid-19, Capgemini warns

Emissions from the global energy sector will be 7-8% lower in 2020 than in 2019, but most nations are still failing to align their energy generation and consumption patterns with long-term climate targets, Capgemini is warning.

The firm has made several major climate announcements since Anders Opedal took over as chief executive

Equinor sets 2050 net-zero target, says 'peak oil' is likely in 2030

Norwegian energy major Equinor has set a 2050 net-zero target, going beyond its previous commitment to reach 'near-zero' emissions for North Sea operations.

Collectively, G20 nations have allocated 33% more funding to fossil fuels than low-carbon generation since March

UK's Covid-19 recovery package for energy 'not net-zero aligned', report finds

The UK Government has earmarked £3.8bn of stimulus funding for legacy fossil fuel and nuclear generation, compared to just £121m for renewables, a damning new report has claimed.

On average, each of the 50 banks was linked $52bn in finance that is causing biodiversity loss risk

Banks and agribusiness linked to biodiversity loss

Some of the world's largest banks have been linked to industries that are causing mass deforestation and biodiversity loss, with some in the finance sector providing loans and underwriting worth more than $2.6trn to climate-wrecking initiatives.

Unilever is aiming to use at least 25% PCR by 2025 and expects to double the amount it uses over the next 12 months

Unilever expects to double use of recycled plastics in next 12 months

Unilever has confirmed that 10% of its plastic footprint now consists of post-consumer recycled plastic (PCR), as the company pushes ahead to meet a target of halving the use of virgin plastic.

The Council is additionally calling for organisations to declare support for inclusion, equality and diversity and to eliminate discrimination

WBCSD launches net-zero criteria for new and existing business members

The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) has launched new criteria to ensure that its business members align to science-based and net-zero targets to reduce emissions by no later than 2050.

Mike Townsend, founder and chief executive of Earthshine Group, summarises the net-zero journey

Towards net-zero: Are we really the smartest of monkeys?

Setting the scene for edie's upcoming Net-Zero November month of themed content and events, sustainable business expert and commentator Mike Townsend takes a thought-provoking look at the various drivers, challenges and opportunities that lie ahead for businesses on our pathway towards a net-zero carbon, circular economy.