Renewable Roundup: Green finance
Rule One of Green Finance: Fossil Foolishness has become vastly more expensive than wind, solar, storage, and so on, and increasingly unprofitable. Rule Two: When you talk about Real Money, even the most hidebound practitioners have to take notice. Not those who are paid to deny reality, of course. But those profits are looking increasingly thin.
Finance is an insane business, between the shenanigans of the banksters and the marketeers, the politics of economics denial, the Ponzi scheme of fracking, the Oil and Gaslighting industry, and the lack of access to finance in “risky” “developing” countries.
So how come trillions of dollars got poured into those countries when they were dictatorships, subject to endless civil wars, and only now is the risk deemed too great, when so many are transitioning to democracy, the rule of law, and economic growth? Oh, of course. Sane economic and financial regulation, too. One could be forgiven for concluding that the financial Masters of the Universe, as some of them call themselves, want other countries to be messed up. As in Naomi Klein’s vision of The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism.
Even so, about $300 billion a year has been going into solar and wind power, and now more into battery storage, electric vehicles, decarbonizing various industries, renewable agriculture, and much more. Divestment from carbon is also taking off.
Throughout Q2 2020, pv magazine is diving deep into the topic of green finance and what it means for solar industry players, as a part of its UP initiative. Topics will include the European Green Deal, regional growth opportunities, green bonds, and the role of the carbon bubble. Stay tuned and get involved!
Yes, definitely. I have done the EGD, various Green New Deals, divestment, and the situations of various countries and US states. There is getting to be more and more and more of it. Isn’t it wonderful? (Except for the remaining Denialists and other Obstructionists.)
Felicia Jackson explains why green finance is changing the energy world and is not just a dream for solar fans. Hailing from London, she is a financial expert, a co-founder of New Energy Finance, now Bloomberg NEF, a member of the UN working group that discusses methods for environmental goals, and a professor at the University of London. Jackson will also author a pv magazine white paper on the topic, scheduled to publish this summer.
Excellent. I’ll definitely Diary that, too.
There is no way to take a comprehensive look at Green Finance in a single Diary. So I won’t. I will just mention some of the main topics here that we can come back to frequently as various aspects develop.
pv magazine: Green finance is a buzz word on which many base their hope that the energy transition will accelerate to new speeds. How much is such thinking caused by us living in a “solar bubble” and missing the world outside where the major part of the population, and experts from other industries, don’t witness the fast change to a renewable-powered economy?
Felicia Jackson: What stood out to me the most was the notion of the solar industry being in a bubble, and that’s something that is true across the board for every sector. The oil industry is in a bubble, mainstream finance is in one, ESG (environmental, social and governance) practitioners and green finance experts are in another. It’s a really important point and one that should be made clearer. Everyone thinks that their own perspective is the only realistic one. And when someone is incapable of seeing beyond ones own expectations, this can become dangerous and myopic. We’ve seen the impact of digitalization on the music industry, AT&T’s failure to address the smartphone, Kodak and the digital camera. The markets remain, for music, for telecoms, for cameras, but they look completely different.
Yes, I know too many of those people, who can only look at Global Warming in terms of fossil fuels, or only solar, or only wind, or only nuclear, or only population, and so on. So let’s try to make this clear.
Single-factor analysis is always dead wrong.
It is always all of the above.
We also have to take account of outright fraud.
China recently confirmed that it will no longer finance ‘clean coal’ through green bonds, which is a significant step in aligning with international standards.
And yet, there are those of us who are capable of focusing on global need rather than insensate greed, and of taking it all in, and making comprehensive plans such as the various Green New Deals, including a new one that Joe Biden has high-powered people working on to become part of his official platform. More on that when we know more.
The world is watching to see whether signatories to the Paris Agreement can increase emission reduction targets to match the 1.5°C goal. While Covid-19 and oil shocks rock the markets and delay negotiations, if the financial community is given the correct information, tools and frameworks to shift its focus, the transition to a low carbon greener future may yet be assured. Felicia Jackson in London explores the implications of the EU’s Climate Law and the Green Deal that it promotes.
I say at every opportunity that countries and industry analysts suffer from massive failures of imagination about what is possible and what is likely to happen. Nobody wants to talk about going 100% renewable yet, or they push it off to 2050. Everybody wants to talk about the death of the gas guzzler as though it, too, were far off, not an imminent cliff edge.
The short version is that it will all happen much more quickly than any of them can imagine because the technology is better than they can believe, and advancing more too quickly for them to keep up with the news. Most importantly, the people are way out ahead. That means you, if you are taking in what I and others have been reporting. You can take part in educating all of these Muggles about the world that they are too purblind to see in front of them.
(Crossposted with DailyKos.)