In this issue:
TNFD guidelines published
We’ve been talking about it for a couple of years and the final framework from the Taskforce on Nature Related Financial Disclosures has now been published. The framework covers 14 recommended disclosures and there is supporting guidance around implementation. More than 190 countries, including NZ, have committed to mandating TNFD reporting by 2030.
Offset markets hitting new heights
Despite major and growing concerns about the integrity of offset markets, market growth is skyrocketing. Analysis just published by Trove Research reveals investment in carbon credit projects in the period 2020-22 was 160% higher than in the previous 8 years. Over the last 10 years US$36bn (NZ$61bn) has been invested in carbon credits.
100 becomes 9 to 15
A new technique for assessing the likelihood of severe flooding indicates the frequency of events will increase ten-fold by 2050. The historic technique for assessing flood risk that gave us the concept of a once in a hundred years event, i.e. a 1% probability, is based on historic data and the probability of repetition. The new study, from scientists at the University of Alabama, builds on data of sea levels collected from 300 sites around the world. Its analysis indicates events of the scale previously described as one in a hundred years are likely to be seen with frequencies of 9-15 years by 2050.
UK leads the way
The latest update from Climate Action Tracker informs us that no country is on track to eliminate fossil fuels from its generation mix. The analysis looks at 16 countries or regions with none being at a stage consistent with achieving 1.5C. The UK appears best placed to come close because of the likely cessation of coal fired generation in 2024. Worryingly, the powerhouse users of coal, China, India and the US are all heading in the wrong direction in eliminating that fuel.
We need to travel 12 times faster
The latest PwC Net Zero Economy Index tells us we need to decarbonise at a rate 12 times faster than our twenty year average if we are to meet the 1.5C target by 2050. To stay within 1.5C, we need to decarbonise at a rate of 17.2% a year, that’s 2 percentage points higher than the equivalent rate last year. Again, the UK is reported as the best performer, averaging decarbonisation of 3.7% a year this century, although this remains woefully short of what is needed.
Accessing finance in the Pacific Islands
The Climate Finance Access Network (CFAN) is partnering with the Pacific Community (SPC) and Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) and extending its network to include representation in French Polynesia, the Cook Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia as well as embedding an advisor in the SPC. CFAN has advisors across the region and has helped unlock US$67m (NZ$113m) investment in its first year, with a pipeline of another US$348m (NZ$587m). To learn more, a good place to start would be the Pacific Resilience Meeting on 11-13 October. Attendance can be in-person or virtual and is free. There is a link on our Events page.
Chameleon buildings for cooling and warming
While building coatings to help cooling and warming are already in extensive use, scientists from Harbin Institute of Technology (China) have developed the first colour-changing building coatings that both cool in summer and warm in winter. When heated above 20C the surface starts to change colour from dark to light grey and even in its light state remains cooler than white paint in comparative testing. It has been tested to 80C without signs of damage. The developers believe the coating will deliver a significant improvement in building energy efficiency, especially in regions that experience significant seasonal temperature variation.
Plastic waste to “free” hydrogen win-win-win
Scientists at Rice University (Texas) have developed a technique for generating hydrogen from waste plastic. The technique involves exposing the waste plastic to rapid flash Joule heating which brings it up to 3100 Kelvin in 4 seconds. The process leaves saleable graphene in sufficient quantities to cover all the operating costs, hydrogen, which can be captured, and deals with the waste.