Spain's coal phase-out and Danone's carbon-neutral factory: The sustainability success stories of the week
As part of our Mission Possible campaign, edie brings you this weekly round-up of five of the best sustainability success stories of the week from across the globe.
'Good all round': Exploring Innocent Drinks' first sustainability report
EXCLUSIVE: Innocent drinks has launched its first "good all round" report, the company's innovative take on the traditional sustainability report outlining progress against its carbon-neutral, circular economy and staff engagement ambitions.
45-Minute Masterclass: Accelerating the smart grid transition for your business
With distributed energy assets fast becoming a mainstream part of the UK power network, this live online masterclass will equip businesses with the insights and inspiration they need to decentralise, decarbonise and democratise their energy through smart grid technologies and systems.
Britain goes 60 days without coal-fired power generation
As of midnight today (10 June), Britain has had no coal-fired power generation on its grid for a full two months - the longest period since the Industrial Revolution.
Fossil fuel profits set to collapse by two-thirds
The global market value of fossil fuels is set to collapse by almost two-thirds, creating heightened economic risk for companies, financial markets and countries failing to embrace new low-carbon technology.
Purpose from passion: How UK communities can help deliver net-zero
As we continue to seek new and innovative strategies to 'Build Back Better', Anda Baumerte, Sustainability Manager and Community Energy Contact at Northern Powergrid outlines how with DNO support community energy projects can transform our energy network and play a vital role in the transition to net-zero.
BNP Paribas accelerates coal phase-out as BlackRock predicts clean energy future
Corporate bank BNP Paribas is speeding up its phase-out of support for coal projects, while BlackRock has claimed that renewables are still the course of action for the global energy mix. However, other investors that have made low-carbon commitments have been accused of supporting a tar sands oil project in Canada.
Oil and gas giants overstating net-zero ambitions, study finds
Recent announcements from European oil and gas majors such as Total, Shell and BP to commit to net-zero aren't actually aligned to the required, science-based cuts to emissions to reach net-zero or the 1.5C target of the Paris Agreement, new research has found.
Coronavirus lockdown: UK hits coal-free month
The UK has gone more than 30 days without relying on coal for power, with gas, nuclear and renewables providing enough demand during a period of lower energy demand because of the coronavirus lockdown.
Total commits to net-zero emissions by 2050 following investor pressure
Global energy company Total is the latest in the sector to commit to net-zero emissions, setting a target for 2050 or sooner after extensive engagement with a climate action investor coalition.
IEA: Global emissions in 2020 to plummet by largest margin ever recorded due to Covid-19
The Covid-19 pandemic is set to deliver the biggest disruption to the energy system since the 1930s, with global electricity demand to fall by 5% while the level of emissions for 2020 are set to fall by 8% - the largest annual decrease in emissions ever recorded, according to the IEA.
UK sets new record for coal-free generation
The UK has this morning broken its existing record for coal-free power generation, surpassing 18 consecutive days and counting.
Barclays and HSBC blasted over £158bn fossil fuel financing
Banking giants Barclays and HSBC have been accused of financing a combined £158bn into the fossil fuel sector since the signing of the Paris Agreement in 2015, despite both organisations pledging to ramp up sustainable investment portfolios.
In numbers: Public attitudes and pollution impacts of the coronavirus lockdown in the UK
A survey has explored how public attitudes towards sustainable living have changed during the UK's Covid-19 lockdown, while separate analysis has examined the potential carbon reductions that a 12-week lockdown would generate in the UK.
UK smashes solar generation record
Solar use in the UK broke an all-time peak generation record on Monday (20 April), accounting for almost 30% of UK electricity demand, with the UK also operating for more than 11 consecutive days without coal.
Royal Dutch Shell commits to net-zero emissions by 2050
One of the world's largest emitters, Royal Dutch Shell, is set to announce plans to become a net-zero emissions business by 2050 at the latest at its Responsible Investment Annual Briefing today (16 April).
Coronavirus: Business leaders join European Green Recovery alliance
Business members of the European Corporate Leaders Group (CLG Europe) have joined the European Parliament, policymakers and NGOs in forming an alliance for a "green recovery" of the European economy that assists with the ongoing fight against the climate crisis.
Carbon emissions from fossil fuels could fall by 2.5bn tonnes in 2020
Global carbon emissions from the fossil fuel industry could fall by a record 2.5bn tonnes this year, a reduction of 5%, as the coronavirus pandemic triggers the biggest drop in demand for fossil fuels on record.
Nations risking 'uneconomic' coronavirus responses by prioritising coal, report warns
China, the US, India and European nations are at risk of being burdened with uneconomic, long-term plans to stimulate their economies in response to the coronavirus outbreak by focusing on new coal capacity, a new study from Carbon Tracker warns.
Solar demand could fall for first time in 30 years due to Coronavirus
BloombergNEF (BNEF) analysis suggests that the ramifications of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) will lead to downgrades in forecasts for renewables deployment and electric vehicle (EV) development, with solar capacity set to fall 16% compared to previous estimates.
Low-carbon generation edges past 50% share of UK's power demand
New statistics from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) have confirmed that low-carbon generation accounted for more than 51% of the electricity supplied in the UK in 2019, a 2% growth on 2018 levels.
Drax to end coal generation in 2021
Drax has announced plans to end commercial coal generation at its coal-fired power station in North Yorkshire in 2021 - ahead of the UK's 2025 deadline - in a move expected to cost up to £35m and lead to job reductions off at least 200.
Glencore slams BP's net-zero target as it outlines measures to cap coal use
The chief executive of coal giant Glencore dubbed BP's 2050 net-zero target "wishy-washy" as he outlined how his firm will tackle scope 3 emissions through to 2035.
RBS's climate goals and Aldi's plastic bag crackdown: The sustainability success stories of the week
As part of our Mission Possible campaign, edie brings you this weekly round-up of five of the best sustainability success stories of the week from across the globe.
RBS to rebrand, plans for 'climate-positive' operations by 2025
The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has unveiled plans to go beyond net-zero emissions for its operations by 2025 and to at least halve the climate impact of its financial decisions and activities by 2030, as part of the organisation's rebrand to the NatWest Group.
Reports: BlackRock and Barclays to act on climate investment calls
As reports emerge that Barclays is set to agree on shareholder calls to phase-out fossil fuel investments, BlackRock has already made strides on its stance to remove fossil fuel firms from its portfolio.
Five key takeaways from edie's net-zero energy masterclass
Last week, edie undertook a masterclass with Smartest Energy on evolving your energy strategy for net-zero, which included a case study with property giant JLL.
COP26: Boris Johnson to move diesel ban forward to 2035 and call for global net-zero transition
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson will use the COP26 climate conference to call on other nations to follow the UK in setting a net-zero target and is also set to reveal plans to move the ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars forward five years to 2035 as part of a "year of climate action".
Climate activist turns down Siemens board role over Australian mine deal
German climate activist Luisa Neubauer has declined an offer from Siemens' chief executive Joe Kaeser to sit on a supervisory board off the firm's new energy business, following controversy over an Australian mining project.
8 steps for overcoming the behavioural change challenge
During the SPARK 2.0 event, energy and sustainability professionals discussed the barriers to behaviour change and how businesses could harness the wider awareness of the climate strikes to engage all staff members on the need to manage energy use.
America's Pledge and Europe's Green Deal: What happened on days 8 & 9 of COP25?
COP25 - the UN's annual two-week-long climate summit - has entered its second week in Madrid. Here, edie rounds up all the key news and views from the last few days of the event.
COP25: Drax to become carbon negative by 2030
UK energy company Drax will announce ambitions to become carbon negative by 2030 at the UN's COP25 climate summit in Madrid today (Tuesday, December 10).
UN: Carbon-intensive businesses will lose trillions as climate policies tighten
Large oil and gas, metals and mining and heavy industry firms are likely to lose almost half (43%) of their value in the next decade, as nations introduce more stringent climate policies.
Report: Coal 'becoming uninsurable' as cover withdrawal doubles
The number of insurance firms withdrawing cover for coal companies and assets has more than doubled between 2018 and 2019, a new report has revealed.
BNP Paribas vows to end coal financing by 2040
Corporate bank BNP Paribas has pledged to stop all funding for thermal coal globally by 2040, with an interim target of 2030 for EU Member States.
Fossil fuel production on track for double the safe climate limit
The world's nations are on track to produce more than twice as much coal, oil and gas as can be burned in 2030 while restricting the rise in the global temperature to 1.5C, analysis shows.
National Grid commits to net-zero emissions target for 2050
The National Grid has announced a commitment to reduce its direct greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by 2050, the same timeframe as the UK Government's legislative target.
Just one in 10 of world's largest energy firms have net-zero targets, report finds
Just 10% of the world's largest 132 coal, electricity and oil and gas companies have set time-based commitments to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero, with just three companies also pledging to reduce indirect emissions as well.
Beyond Carbon: The $500m plan to create a low-carbon US, with or without Trump
EXCLUSIVE: President Donald Trump may have officially kickstarted the process to withdraw the US from the Paris Agreement, but there is a movement of cities, states and businesses that is driving the nation towards 100% clean energy, with or without support from the federal government.
Oil and gas giants must cut production by a third to meet climate targets
The world's largest oil and gas companies must cut combined production by 35% by 2040 if nations are the meet the collective ambitions of the Paris Agreement and limit global warming to below 2C, a new report from Carbon Tracker has found.
Energy giants call for post-Brexit carbon price certainty in 'Net-Zero Budget'
Energy giants Drax, Orsted and SSE have penned a joint letter to Chancellor Sajid Javid calling for the Government to outline post-Brexit carbon pricing mechanisms, warning that it is crucial to the resilience of business and acts as a key indicator for investors.
Study: EU coal power plants incurred €6.6 billion losses in 2019
Increasing environmental regulations and fierce competition from renewable energies are increasingly making coal-fired power operate at a loss. According to a British think tank, coal-fired power plants are losing billions of euros every year, but energy companies say this is nonsense.
Renewable energy to expand by 50% in next five years - report
Global supplies of renewable electricity are growing faster than expected and could expand by 50% in the next five years, powered by a resurgence in solar energy.
'Risking a carbon budget blowout': UK Government gives go-ahead to Drax gas plant
The UK Government is "risking a carbon budget blowout" by overruling a recommendation from its planning authority in order to give the green light to Drax's large-scale gas power plant, which had been refused on climate grounds.
Total signs cleantech deal to produce hydrogen at refineries
French energy giant Total has signed a cooperation agreement with the Sunfire cleantech company to integrate capture waste heat and CO2 at a German refinery to create synthetic methanol and hydrogen to be used to reduce energy and transport emissions.
RWE to become carbon-neutral by 2040
German utilities giant RWE has unveiled a new strategy to transform itself into a carbon-neutral company by 2040 by funnelling billions into renewables projects, decommissioning existing coal-fired plants and backing carbon capture and storage technology.
Coal drops to record low generation share in UK
Coal power generated a record low of 0.6% of the UK's grid mix between April and June, the latest official Government statistics have revealed.
Banks representing one-third of global market to align with Paris climate targets
A coalition of 130 banks, representing one-third of the worldwide banking sector, have committed to aligning their actions with the aims of the Paris Agreement.
Global decarbonisation efforts 'stall', pushing climate goals out of reach
Global decarbonisation efforts will need to be seven times greater than current efforts, if the world is to stand a fair chance of limiting global warming to 1.5C, according to a new PwC report which found that the rate of global decarbonisation has slowed to its lowest level since 2011.
Meet edie's 30 Under 30 class of 2019: Luke Landers, University Hospitals Birmingham
This new series profiles the members of edie's 30 Under 30 - a nomination-based community of 30 hugely talented young sustainability and energy professionals who have already achieved great things or are showing fantastic promise. Next up: Luke Landers, energy and sustainability manager at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Trust.
EU countries have 'no concrete plans' to phase out fossil fuel subsidies: report
Not a single EU member state has so far spelled out a comprehensive plan to phase out fossil fuel subsidies, despite a commitment taken at the G20 ten years ago to eliminate them, according to a fresh analysis of the bloc's 28 National Energy and Climate Plans.
Coal generation becoming a 'distant memory' as share of energy mix falls to 0.7%
The amount of energy generated from coal sources in the UK has fallen to a record-low output of 0.7% - a 63% decline on the same period the year prior - with low-carbon making up more than half of the UK's energy mix.
The Barker Plan: How a former UK Energy Minister used sustainability to transform a sanctioned Russian aluminium firm
EXCLUSIVE: Over the course of a year, Russian aluminium and hydropower firm EN+ Group has gone from being banned on the US market to launching a new sweeping sustainability strategy and having those sanctions lifted. Here, edie speaks to former UK Energy Minister Greg Barker, who has been the surprise driving force behind this transformation.
CCS, food waste and deposit return schemes: Recapping a week of major green policy announcements
As Boris Johnson settles into his first day as the UK Prime Minister, Defra, the Treasury and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) have released a flurry of documents to strengthen approaches to environmental regulation, energy policy and packaging production.
National Grid ESO joins Powering Past Coal Alliance
The National Grid Electricity System Operator (ESO) has announced it is joining an international group, called the Powering Past Coal Alliance (PPCA), which is working on the transition away from coal power.
Emergency response Q&A: How can business accelerate towards net-zero emissions?
The UK has declared a climate emergency and the Government has set a legally binding target for net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. This one-hour webinar takes the form of a live Q&A session with a range of climate policy and business energy experts to explore how businesses should respond to the situation.
G20 nations triple coal power subsidies despite climate crisis
G20 nations have almost tripled the subsidies they give to coal-fired power plants in recent years, despite the urgent need to cut the carbon emissions driving the climate crisis.
UK to use more electricity from renewables than coal for first time in 2019
2019 will be the year that the UK's electricity system distributes more power generated from zero-carbon sources than from coal-fired power stations for the first time, new data from National Grid has concluded.
UK to be left with five coal power stations after Fiddler's Ferry closure
The UK's race to increase renewable energy sources has intensified with the announcement of plans to close another coal-fired power station.
Energy industry's carbon emissions rise at fastest rate in nearly a decade
Carbon emissions from the global energy industry rose at the fastest rate in almost a decade in 2018 after surprise swings in global temperatures stoked extra demand for fossil fuels.
Michael Bloomberg announces $500m campaign to end US coal generation
Billionaire businessman and philanthropist Michael Bloomberg has announced a $500m investment aimed at fighting climate change by ending coal-fired electricity generation in the US.
UK celebrates first coal-free fortnight for electricity grid
The UK's electricity grid will have operated without coal-fired power for a fortnight at 3.12pm today (31 May), marking a first since pre-industrial times.
UK goes 11 days coal-free (and counting)
The UK has set another energy-related record in 2019, with the National Grid confirming on Tuesday (28 May), that the UK has gone 11 days without relying on coal for power generation.
UK completes first coal-free week since Industrial Revolution
The UK has just completed its first week without any domestic coal generation on the power grid since before the Industrial Revolution, marking a significant milestone in its low-carbon energy transition.
Cambridge University agrees to explore fossil fuel divestment plan
The former archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams has welcomed an "urgent change" by Cambridge University, after it agreed to provide fully costed plans setting out how it could divest multibillion-pound endowments from fossil fuel corporations.
Britain notches up another coal-free record over Easter
Great Britain's power grid notched up another coal-free record over the Easter weekend, operating for nearly 92 consecutive hours without any domestic coal generation.
UK breaks coal-free power generation record by huge margin
Coal has historically been at the cornerstone of the UK's electricity mix, but the first three months of 2019 saw the electricity grid clock up 650 hours of coal-free generation - more than was achieved during the entirety of 2017.
In charts: The UK's record-breaking year for low-carbon energy generation
With the latest Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) statistics revealing that 2018 was a record-breaking year for renewables and low-carbon generation, edie dives into the data to pull out the key achievements.
First deep coal mine in 30 years given go-ahead in Cumbria
Cumbria County Council has granted planning approval for a new coal mine facility, Woodhouse Colliery in Whitehaven, the first of its kind in more than 30 years.
UK carbon emissions fall for record sixth year
CO2 emissions have fallen for a sixth consecutive year - the longest continuous decline since records began - according to new data provided by the Government.
Etsy to offset global shipping emissions
Online retailer Etsy has announced plans to offset 100% of its carbon emissions generated from shipping items, free of charge for its customers.
Global energy demand to decouple from economic growth by 2035, but not quick enough for a 2C world
Global energy demand will decouple from economic growth for the first time by 2035, due to zero-carbon energy sources accounting for more than half of the global power supply - a feat that still puts a 2C-pathway "out of reach".
Carbon Brief: UK's emissions could have doubled since 1990 without renewable energy
The UK's total carbon footprint has decreased by 38% since 1990 - but could have doubled if the renewable energy revolution had failed to gain traction, new analysis from Carbon Brief has concluded.
Germany agrees to end reliance on coal stations by 2038
Germany has agreed to end its reliance on polluting coal power stations by 2038, in a long-awaited decision that will have major ramifications for Europe's attempts to meet its Paris climate change targets.
Analysis warns of lack of progress on 2020 global emissions target
Removing coal from the global energy mix is taking too long, too many forests are still being destroyed, and fossil fuel subsidies are ongoing despite their distorting effect on the market, a new study has found.
Nuclear strategy in 'meltdown' after Wylfa suspension
The government's nuclear strategy is in "meltdown" following Hitachi's announcement that it is halting work on its plans for a new UK atomic power plant in north Wales, Alan Whitehead has said.
Renewables forecast to overtake fossil fuels in 2020
Renewables will overtake fossil fuels in 2020 to become the "dominant" source of power in Great Britain, EnAppsSys has predicted in a new report.
Minister urged to drop new coal-mining plans in Northumberland
A wild stretch of Northumberland beach has become the ultimate testing ground of the Government's much-vaunted commitment to phase out coal by 2025, according to campaigners.
EU forges deal on coal phase-out, with special Polish clause
European Union legislators reached agreement in the early hours of Wednesday (19 December) over a proposed reform of electricity market rules that includes a 2025 cut-off date for coal subsidies, and a special clause for Poland.
Wales pledges to phase-out fossil fuels in favour of renewables
The Welsh Government has committed to phase out the continued extraction and use of fossil fuels, including those obtained by fracking, as it strives to reduce national carbon emissions by 80% by 2050, against a 2011 baseline.
'We are last generation that can stop climate change' - UN summit
The UN climate change summit begins on Monday with a warning that today's generation is the last that can prevent catastrophic global warming, as well as the first to be suffering its impacts.
Five ideas to capitalise on your energy data
This report showcases the output of edie's SPARK! event, where roundtable participants shared experiences of energy data management tools and techniques, and explored some of the practical steps that can be taken to generate energy and cost savings through more effective monitoring and measuring approaches.
In action: EDF Energy's smart data focus to drive energy efficiency
In September 2017, EDF Energy installed its PowerNow live energy monitoring system at one of its own offices as a way of trialling its own solutions whilst improving the energy efficiency of the building. As revealed in this case study, the project has achieved excellent results all round.
Sustainable mobility: A blueprint for business leadership
This edie insight report explores five of the most important areas of focus for sustainability professionals - from electric vehicles (EVs) and greener fleets, to smarter business travel.
Big-name retailers collaborate to spur uptake of clean domestic fuels
Several big-name retail brands including B&Q, Asda and Wickes have this week unveiled fresh measures to help consumers make the switch to low-carbon, smoke-free and energy-efficient home fuels.
Fresh warnings over lack of climate action across finance sector
The reinsurance and pension fund sectors are failing to progress the finance sector towards key climate goals by continuing to invest in coal projects over low-carbon alternatives, two reports have claimed.
Tata Steel unveils technology that could halve emissions from steel production
Tata Steel has unveiled new technology that is able to reduce the carbon emissions from iron and steel production by more than 50%.
Meet the Sustainability Leader: The Coal Authority - Recycling and Resources
With entries soon closing for edie's revamped 2019 Sustainability Leaders Awards, this new feature series will showcase the achievements of the 2018 winners, revealing their secrets to success. Up next: our 2018 Recycling and Resources winners, The Coal Authority.
Trump administration scraps Obama-era regulation on coal emissions
The Trump administration has put forward a greenhouse gas emissions plan that could boost output from coal-fired power plants rather than push them towards closure and result in as many as 1,400 premature deaths each year.
Report: EU carbon prices could hit €40 over next five years
European Union (EU) carbon prices could more than double to €40 per tonne between 2019 and 2023, spurring the transition away from coal power across the bloc.
The Climate Coach: Renewable Energy
I have a dream, of a society where children play safely outside in green, common areas, where there are no cars. People travel to work in electric powered trains, buses and through electric car share. They walk and cycle to school, to the local shop and to meet friends. A dream where renewable energy sources provide all the power we need - for heating, electricity and transport - in businesses as well as in homes.
Ireland becomes world's first country to divest from fossil fuels
The Republic of Ireland will become the world's first country to sell off its investments in fossil fuel companies, after a bill was passed with all-party support in the lower house of parliament.
edie at 20: Is sustainability finally coming home?
It's official - edie is now 20 years old. Our 20th anniversary as a sustainable business media brand offers a chance to celebrate and reflect upon the tremendous achievements of the green economy - but it is also a time for us to realise the immense opportunity that now lies ahead.
G7 countries pour $100bn a year into oil, gas and coal: study
Each year, at least $100bn goes to support the production and consumption of oil, gas and coal, according to a major new study published on Monday (4 June). That is despite a promise from all G7 and G20 members to stop subsidising fossil fuels by 2025.
Top pension funds and insurers failing to engage with climate risks
Some of the UK's biggest pension funds are failing to address climate-related impacts, while 25 of the world's largest insurance brokers continue to invest in coal or tar sands projects, two damning reports have claimed this week.
UK insurers lead the ranks for climate action
UK insurance companies Aviva and Legal & General have taken two of the top four spots in a ranking of global insurers on their climate strategies, but globally the sector is struggling to set climate targets in line with the Paris Agreement.
'From coal to clean' - UK does not need to turn to gas, says WWF
The UK has no need to build new large gas-fired power stations to replace the coal plants that the government has pledged to switch off by 2025, the World Wide Fund for Nature has argued.
Allianz pledges to stop insuring coal plants as pressure mounts on insurance industry
Financial services firm Allianz has set a target to eliminate its insurance coverage for coal, amid heightened pressure on the industry to end its support for the fossil fuel.
Sector insight: The state of sustainability in hospitality & leisure
This exclusive insight report explores the key drivers, challenges and opportunities facing sustainability in the UK's hospitality & leisure industry.
UK runs without coal power for three days in a row
The UK has been powered without coal for three days in a row, setting a new record and underlining the polluting fuel's rapid decline.