World

As donors dither, Indigenous funds seek to decolonise green finance  

Tired of waiting for donor dollars for climate and nature protection to trickle down, Indigenous rights groups are creating new funds to do things differently

World Bank climate funding greens African hotels while fishermen sink

Climate Home reveals that the World Bank Group has counted support for luxury hotels as climate finance, which experts say fails the most vulnerable

SBTi’s rigid emissions rules don’t reflect business reality

The Science Based Targets initiative ignores the good a company’s products do in avoiding planet-heating emissions – only counting those from its operations

SBTi needs tighter rules on companies’ indirect emissions

Businesses are not required to cut all their value chain emissions in line with a 1.5C warming limit – and allowing offsetting could weaken efforts further

Spring Meetings can jump-start financial reform for food and climate 

The World Bank and IMF have a big part to play in raising the $3 trillion needed to help countries meet global development goals and the Paris accord

Louisiana communities are suffering from Japan-funded LNG exports

When the Japanese and US leaders meet in Washington, they should back a renewable energy future that will end harm to our health and livelihoods from fossil gas

Forest carbon accounting allows Guyana to stay net zero while pumping oil

Experts say UN rules around forests and oil are open to abuse, so that countries like Guyana can claim to be carbon-negative without cutting emissions

What will it take to protect India’s angry farmers from climate threats?

Indebted farmers, facing falling yields and water scarcity, want legally guaranteed price support for more crops – but that may not fix their climate woes

African dismay at decision to host loss and damage advice hub in Geneva

The UN agencies that will run the Santiago Network recommended it should be based in Nairobi but governments have instead chosen the world’s third-most expensive city

Fossil fuel industry under pressure to cut record-high methane emissions

New regulations and monitoring advances could turn the tide on methane emissions from oil, gas and coal production this year

World

US

US trade agency backs oil and gas drilling in Bahrain despite Biden pledge

Ex-Im’s financing would boost fossil fuel production in the Gulf state with the construction of over 450 new oil and gas wells

John Podesta replaces Kerry as top US climate diplomat

Podesta will lead US international climate diplomacy alongside his current job overseeing the rollout of domestic clean energy subsidies

Biden misses chance to tackle “huge” US landfill emissions

Food and plants dumped into US landfills are rotting and warming the planet but “weak” regulations have not been improved

US government pauses new gas export terminals in ‘historic win’ for climate

The Biden administration is freezing approvals of new LNG export permits as climate considerations take centre stage.

After gas pipeline sabotage, German activists claim solidarity against US gas export terminals

A group celebrating the sabotage said they opposed the pipeline out of solidarity with marginalised people in the USA

Veteran US and Chinese climate envoys step down

Xie Zhenhua has stepped down and John Kerry has announced he will do the same in a few months time

US tees up Congress battle with $3bn Green Climate Fund pledge

Vice-president Kamala Harris pledged $3 billion to the Green Climate Fund at Cop28, which Congressional Republicans will likely try to block

The US and China’s resurgent climate cooperation is a big deal

Even though we now have the Paris agreement, cooperation between the world’s two biggest emitters, US and China, is still crucial

US

China

China steps away from 2025 energy efficiency goal

The government aims to cut the amount of energy needed for its economic growth by 2.5% in 2024, putting it far off track for a key five-year climate target

Junk offset sellers push to enter new UN carbon market

Renewable energy schemes make up four-fifths of Kyoto-era projects hoping to keep selling offsets under Article 6, sparking concerns over the credibility of the new market.

China announces plans to manage electric vehicles power demand

The government will consider incentives to charge electric vehicles at off-peak hours and to let vehicles sell their electricity to the grid

China objects to UN fund warnings on solar’s forced labour risks

China opposed six Green Climate Fund projects because the proposals flagged the risk of forced labour in the manufacturing of solar panels.

China’s Belt and Road gets ‘green’ reboot and spending boost

Clean energy is a priority as China promises $100 billion of development funding – but don’t call it climate finance

China opposes ‘not realistic’ global fossil fuel phase-out

From Beijing, climate envoy Xie Zhenhua stood firm against stronger rhetoric against coal, oil and gas deployed at UN headquarters

Devastating Beijing floods test China’s ‘sponge cities’

Despite Beijing’s sponge city project, the capital was overwhelmed by recent floods with dozens dying and a new “sponge airport” shut down

China plans to recycle solar panels and wind turbines

China is the world’s biggest manufacturer of renewable energy equipment and is making plans for how to dispose of it once it stops working

China

India

Capturing coal’s carbon can ease pain of India’s energy transition

Nearly two fifths of India’s districts depend on the coal sector and a rapid phasedown would be devastating for millions of people

Sugar rush: how farmers spurred India’s G20 biofuels alliance

Nineteen countries signed up to an India-led alliance this month to boost production of biofuels, but experts raise sustainability concerns

Why India is rebuffing a coal-to-clean deal with rich nations

The country is not moving away from coal yet, doesn’t want to hand rich nations a win and thinks the JETP terms aren’t good enough

G20 leaders strike renewables deal, stall on fossil fuels

The world’s largest economies agreed to push for a tripling of renewable energy capacity by 2030, but made no progress on oil and gas phaseout

India mulls end to coal plant construction

If approved by the cabinet, India’s new electricity policy would end the construction of new coal-fired power plants after the planned 28 GW are built

India announces $4.3 billion investment in clean energy

India wants to become a leader in green hydrogen production and to develop huge solar projects in the Ladakh region of the Himalayas

Sinking town exposes perils of Himalayan hydropower

The government ignored warnings that building large hydropower projects in the Himalayas was unsafe. Now Josimath town is falling apart

Cost of a KitKat: Big brands leave sugar farmers at the mercy of climate extremes

Nestlé, Coca Cola and Pepsi are among the buyers from Nanglamal Sugar Complex, which smallholders say gives no help with climate resilience

India

EU

Germany uses funding to pressure climate groups on Israel-Gaza war

Many Global South climate groups are funded by the German government, a political ally of Israel, and feel unable to criticise Israel’s military action in Gaza

Revealed: UK civil servants’ secret doubts over climate techno-fixes

The government is relying on special cow food and green plane fuel to cut emissions – but officials warn some solutions may fall short

Despite Cop28 pledge, France keeps fossil fuel subsidies for farmers

France has abandoned plans to phase out tax breaks on agricultural diesel in efforts to appease its increasingly disgruntled farmers

Oil drilling while in the Energy Charter Treaty is economically reckless

The UK is opening itself up to repeated lawsuits from foreign oil and gas firms if it passes the Offshore Petroleum Licensing Bill

EU floats 90% emissions target but drops green farming measures

The European Commission has proposed a 90% cut to net emissions by 2040 but has dropped specific targets for farming

While Europe’s green backlash grows, Poland tells different story

As the backlash against laws protecting nature intensifies across Europe, public pressure has helped push forests centre stage in Poland

Italy launches ‘ambiguous’ Africa plan fuelling fears over fossil fuels role

Giorgia Meloni has unveiled a long-awaited plan for African development named after Enrico Mattei, founder of oil and gas giant Eni.

Poland’s green tide arrives in Brussels

While the previous Polish government tried to water down the EU’s climate action, the new one is supporting ambition

EU

Africa

Problems mount for Sahara gas pipeline, leaving Nigerian taxpayers at risk

The Nigerian government is sinking billions into the long-delayed project but economic and security problems are mounting

Shell accused of trying to wash hands of Nigerian oil spill mess

Shell’s oil spills have ruined farms and fisheries and locals want compensation before it sells up

Witness bribing minister’s family own Congolese carbon credit company

The minister Jean-Pierre Bemba bribed witnesses in his war crimes trial and holds power over the environment minister Eve Bazaiba

South African ministry uses opaque modelling to argue for weakening climate ambition

Gwede Mantashe’s ministry argues for cutting ambition on renewables and investing more in gas. also plugging so-called “clean coal”

Leaks reveal how McKinsey drives African climate agenda

Whistleblowers raise alarm over American consultancy’s growing influence in pushing carbon markets and developing energy transition plans

Ghana’s flood victims blame government for overflowing dam destruction

Last month, a government-owned electricity company deliberately spilled water from its dam, displacing tens of thousands

Total is disrespecting graves in East Africa as it pursues pipeline

To build the East African Crude Oil Pipeline, Total is moving over 2,000 graves in Uganda and Tanzania, with no respect for local customs

Shades of green hydrogen: EU demand set to transform Namibia

Backed by the EU, Namibia has a $20 billion plan to export green hydrogen. A secretive tender process raises concerns for nature and citizens.

Africa

South America

Argentine resistance hinders Milei’s forest and glacier destruction

Ultra free-market president Javier Milei has not so far been able to get cuts to environmental regulations through Congress

Germany and US warn Brazil against using Amazon Fund to pave rainforest road

The Brazilian government wants to tap forest protection funds to pave a major highway. Western donors say that goes against the fund’s rules.

Brazil lawmakers approve using green fund to pave road through Amazon rainforest

Donations meant to preserve the Amazon rainforest may be spent paving the road, which critics say will worsen the forest’s destruction

Colombia’s big green plans run into headwinds

Tricky politics have hampered renewable growth and plans to stop oil and gas exploration have sparked economic fears

Argentine rewilding debate descends into legal threats

A nature conservation foundation has accused Argentine scientists of slander after criticism of their rewilding methods

Lula scraps Bolsonaro’s cuts to Brazilian climate target ambition

Brazil will go back to the climate targets it drew up in 2015 while it works on new and improved ones

Green debt swaps, explained

Debt-for-nature and debt-for-climate swaps are becoming more common, with Ecuador’s recent $1.6bn deal the biggest yet. How do they work?

Soy, beef and gold gangsters: Why Bolivia and Venezuela won’t protect the Amazon

Bolivia wants to chop down trees to grow soy, beef and palm oil while Venezuela is unwilling or unable to restrain illegal gold mining

South America

Middle East

Saudi Arabia cancels plan to raise oil pumping cap

Analysts said Saudi Arabia’s government may be losing faith that the world wants to keep buying more of its oil

‘I hug you deep inside my heart’: In memory of Khalil Abu Yahia

Khalil was a researcher who drew attention to the impacts of climate change on the Gaza Strip before being killed by Israel’s bombs

Battle lines drawn in talks on new plastics treaty

US and Saudi Arabia want a bottom-up deal focused on recycling, while a “high ambition coalition” wants top-down curbs on plastic production

Deadly flash floods in UAE highlight need for resilience investment

The Middle East has not been used to planning for intense rainfall but the region must learn the lessons of recent flooding which killed Asian migrants, experts warn

Europe must set robust clean hydrogen standards to mobilise MENA investment

Europe needs low-carbon hydrogen and the Middle-East and North Africa can produce it

Saudi Arabia’s senior negotiator Ayman Shasly steps back from climate talks

Chair of the Arab group for a decade, Shasly is absent from interim climate talks in Bonn and is being replaced by Albara Tawfiq

German minister backs Middle East ‘peace through water’ plan

The proposals aim to harness solar power to bring drinking water to Palestinian territories but Israel’s support is needed

Saudi energy minister touts pink hydrogen made by “emancipated young ladies”

Saudi Arabia wants to become a leading exporter of hydrogen from both clean and dirty sources as part of an economic diversification plan

Middle East

Asia

Why didn’t China and India sign Cop28 tripling renewables pledge?

China and India are on track to triple renewable capacity this decade, but were put off by anti-coal language and cost concerns

Fearing repression in Dubai, non-binary people stay away from Cop28

Non-binary and trans people have been detained and deported at Dubai airport and being gay is effectively criminalised in the UAE

Slow start for Indonesia’s much-hyped carbon market

Since President Widodo launched Indonesia’s exchange two months ago, there’s been barely any trading of carbon credits

China sets out methane plan, but no reduction target

Experts said that China didn’t want to shut down coal mines and was likely under-counting its coal mine methane emissions

Indonesia delays coal closure plans after finance row with rich nations

After its pleas for grants not loans fell mostly on deaf ears, Indonesia has watered down its plans to shut coal power plants early

Rich nations offer loans not grants for Vietnam’s coal transition

The G7 has offered to mobilise $15.5 billion to get Vietnam from coal to clean energy but just 2% of this is grants

ADB set to launch first coal early retirement scheme in Indonesia

A finance tool to shut down Asian coal plants up to a decade early will swing into action “soon”, says Asian Development Bank climate envoy

Vietnamese climate activist jailed in ‘unjust’ government crackdown

Five environmentalists have been jailed in the last two years, while the government works on a clean energy partnership with rich nations

Asia

Pacific

Australia to accept migrants from climate-hit Tuvalu in security pact

Australia has offered visas and climate finance to Tuvalu in a security pact to counter China’s influence in the Pacific region

Australia’s bid to host climate talks is welcome but must be matched with action

The climate minister of Pacific Island Vanuatu says those choosing the Cop31 host should examine Australia’s gas expansion plans

Small islands struggle to get help from UN’s flagship climate fund

While small islands still say the Green Climate Fund is better than the rest, they are facing problems getting money from it

UK sued over plan to import more polluting Australian beef

Campaigners are challenging the UK government over its assessment of environmental impacts of a trade deal with Australia

Greens stop blocking Australia’s new fossil fuel projects

They folded after winning concessions from the government which will make producing coal and gas more expensive

Nations fight to be called climate vulnerable in IPCC report

Being recognised as partiuclarly vulnerable can help countries access climate finance and plan adaptation strategies

Pacific islands welcome Australia’s renewed climate ambition – and ask for more

At this week’s Pacific Island Forum the new Australian government got a warmer response from its smaller neighbours but was pressed to keep fossil fuels in the ground

Billionnaire activist forces Australia’s biggest polluter into climate-friendly U-turn

AGL had planned to split in two and keep burning coal for another two decades or more, before Mike Cannon-Brookes led a shareholder revolt

Pacific