Renewable financing gets boost; Iraq regains Baiji; Senate blocks Keystone XL [Recharge]

Industrialized nations make good on a pledge to finance sustainable development. Iraqi troops reportedly retake the Baiji refinery. The US Senate votes down the Keystone XL pipeline. Catch up on global energy with Recharge.

Juan Karita/AP/File
A technician walks through solar panels at the government-run Fotovoltaica Solar Plant in Cobija, in the Amazon area of northern Bolivia.

Recharge delivers the big ideas in global energy to your inbox every Saturday. Subscribe for free.

GCF: Industrialized nations are making good on a pledge to finance sustainable development across the industrializing world. With new commitments from Japan, Canada, and the US this week, the Green Climate Fund is just shy of its $10 billion fundraising goal for this year. That commitment, combined with strong new European climate targets and a US-China emissions deal, make the road to next year's Paris talks look less onerous.

BaijiReports of Iraqi troops retaking the Baiji refinery from Islamic State control doesn't directly impact global fuel flows, but it is doubly good news for Iraqis and broader regional stability. Iraqi control of the refinery means IS loses a potential source of financing while northern Iraq regains a critical source of transportation fuel and electricity for Baghdad and elsewhere. It could prove a decisive turn in broader efforts to reverse the terrorist group's advance.

59-41The US Senate narrowly blocked a bill to approve Keystone XL, but the pipeline's outsize role in the US energy conversation is far from over. Once Republicans take control of the Senate in January, they'll likely pass a bill immediately to score an early political victory. President Obama might veto it, but it looks increasingly likely that he will use it as a bargaining chip for other energy goals.

In the pipeline

 

Drill deeper

What It Would Really Take to Reverse Climate Change [IEEE Spectrum]
In 2011, Google shuttered its "moonshot" renewable energy program, deflating hopes the sprawling tech giant might play a core role in developing new renewable technologies. In this thoughtful, nuanced essay, two of the project's lead engineers reflect on what they learned about decarbonizing our energy supply and the technological hurdles that remain.

Oil Dispute Takes a Page From Congo’s Bloody Past
[The New York Times]
The dispute over drilling in Virunga National Park underscores an age-old tension between economics and the environment, amplified by sub-Saharan Africa's widespread energy poverty and its iconic landscapes and wildlilfe. It also threatens to replay the brutal exploitation of Congo's rubber, ivory, copper, and other minerals.

Tech, Not Oil Prices, Spurred $35 Billion Halliburton Merger
[U.S. News & World Report]
“These negotiations have been going on for a year if not longer. The timing’s irrelevant," Fred Beach, assistant director at the University of Texas-Austin's Energy Institute, tells U.S. News. "Instead of two overseas offices, you’ve now got one; instead of two logistics pipelines, you’ve got one.... It makes them a much stronger international company.”

Energy sources

  • The White House: "We are supporting Ukrainian efforts to enhance its own energy production, including through technical assistance to help restructure Ukraine’s national oil and gas company, Naftogaz, and through the introduction of new technologies to boost outputs from existing and new conventional gas fields in Ukraine. "
  • EPA: "Today EPA is announcing that it will not be finalizing 2014 applicable percentage standards under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program before the end of 2014. In light of this delay in issuing the 2014 RFS standards, the compliance demonstration deadline for the 2013 RFS standards will take place in 2015."
  • UNEP: "The best estimate is that global carbon neutrality is reached between 2055 and 2070 in order to have a likely chance of staying within the 2 degree C limit."

Recharge delivers the big ideas in global energy to your inbox every Saturday. Subscribe for free.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.

QR Code to Renewable financing gets boost; Iraq regains Baiji; Senate blocks Keystone XL [Recharge]
Read this article in
https://www.csmonitor.com/Environment/Energy-Voices/2014/1124/Renewable-financing-gets-boost-Iraq-regains-Baiji-Senate-blocks-Keystone-XL-Recharge
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today
https://www.csmonitor.com/subscribe