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Introducing The Jolt, a new series from FORESIGHT Climate & Energy, which will keep you updated on all the essential energy transition stories
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Welcome to today’s episode of The Jolt by FORESIGHT Climate & Energy. In a world underpinned by climate and energy stories, it is sometimes hard to cut through the cacophony of noise and get to the news you need to hear.
This is where The Jolt comes in. Tune in on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays for bite-sized updates, expert analysis and a global view.
We kick off with a look at the major global climate and energy news stories.
What you need to know
Here are some of the main climate and energy stories making the news around the world:
- Hydrogen should not be used to heat homes, according to a UK government advisory committee. The National Infrastructure Commission instead says significant financial support for heat pumps should be prioritised instead.
- An Australian pension fund that controls more than $100 billion intends to invest $1.3 billion into clean energy projects, particularly small-scale solar and battery installations.
- The United States National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine says government initiatives like the Inflation Reduction Act have put the country onto a pathway where its net-zero 2050 goal is now achievable.
- According to a new ranking by WalletHub, a personal finance company, Utah is the most energy efficient US state, while South Carolina is the worst. California, Colorado and New York make the top ten.
- Oil price jumped 2% thanks to ongoing tensions in the Middle East. A deadly hospital blast in Gaza that left hundreds dead, as well as the cancellation of a peace talks summit between Egyptian, Jordanian, Palestinian and US leaders contributed to the spike.
- EU member countries finally agreed to an update of electricity market rules after ministers were able to find a compromise on the finer details of contracts for difference (CfDs). Talks with the European Parliament and Commission can now begin.
Today’s big story
An EU COP-out
Image MidJourney / Prompts FORESIGHT.
- The European Union wants to go to November’s COP28 summit with a strong negotiating position, in order to convince other countries to follow its lead on energy transition issues like renewable energy and fossil fuel reductions.
- But at a meeting of environment ministers this week, where that position was discussed and voted on, governments did not agree that the EU should call for a full fossil fuel phaseout, rather the phaseout of “unabated fossil fuels”.
- This means that oil and gas used to generate easy to abate sectors like power generation and light vehicles should be nixed but heavy industry should be allowed to continue emitting if they use carbon capture.
- Spanish minister Teresa Ribera says getting rid of fossil fuels is a “step by step process” while Maltese minister Miriam Dalli says that it is a big consideration for smaller countries.
- The EU also failed to get an agreement on upgrading its emissions reduction target for 2030 from 55% to 57%. Ministers would only accept a deal that included “at least 55%”.
“It is problematic because this is one of the biggest issues we will be discussing at the next COP”
- Greens member of the European Parliament Michael Bloss warns that the EU now risks going to COP without a strong position and doubts that the Union can convince others to be more ambitious, given that it has failed to show that ambition itself.
- Check out FORESIGHT’s latest episode of the Policy Dispatch which features a discussion with Wales’ climate minister and stay tuned for our next deep-dive article on North American cities and how they are facing up to transport challenges.
Audio clip credits:
European Council video archive
We want The Jolt to be as listener-driven as possible! Get in touch with us about what you like, what you don’t like and what you’d like to see in future episodes. All feedback is appreciated so don’t be shy!
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