EVs, Ad Bans and Sustainable Investing
Climate, Health and Equity Newsletter

EVs, Ad Bans and Sustainable Investing

The Climate, Health & Equity Brief is GMMB’s take on the week’s news on the current impacts of climate change. If you haven’t subscribed yet, you can do so by clicking here.

Hot Topic: Carbon neutrality. Oil and gas took a hit around the world this week as evidence shows that a shift away from fossil fuels continues to gain steam in multiple sectors.

The UK announced that it will ban the sale of all non-electric cars by 2035 in an effort to slash emissions from the transportation sector. British newspaper The Guardian has banned ads from oil and gas companies on principle, despite the impact the move is likely to have on the paper’s bottom line.  And in Denmark, Ørsted—a company once responsible for one-third of the country’s entire carbon footprint—is now on track to become the first carbon-neutral utility in the world as it rapidly scales up its wind power business and converts its last remaining coal plant to biomass.

In the world of finance, European sustainable investment funds swelled by 56% in 2019, demonstrating a clear shift toward green investment options among consumers. And in the US, even Jim Cramer, fiery television host of CNBC’s Mad Money, declared fossil fuels “dead” as major oil and gas companies posted disappointing fourth-quarter earnings.

One place oil and gas received top billing this week?  President Trump’s State of the Union Address, in which he avoided any mention of climate change and credited his aggressive rollback of environmental regulations with a boom in domestic fossil fuel production.

—Matt & Traci, GMMB

*Programming note: The Brief will be on hiatus next week; we will be back in your inboxes with two weeks’ worth of coverage and analysis on Friday, February 21.

Action
The UK will ban non-electric car sales by 2035 in an effort to reduce carbon emissions and move towards meeting their net-zero goals in 2050. (CNBC)

A new report found that 40 percent of Australia’s local governments are committed to meeting Paris Climate Agreement goals despite inaction and denial by the country’s federal government. (One Step Off the Grid)

Danish energy company Ørsted will soon become the first carbon-neutral utility in the world once it closes its last remaining coal plant and eliminates the final 2% of emissions from its operations. (Fast Company)

The Guardian newspaper has announced it will ban advertising from oil and gas companies, effective immediately, due to decades-long industry efforts to “prevent meaningful climate action by governments around the world.” (The Guardian)

Politics & Economy
European sustainable investing funds generated a record $132 billion from clients in 2019, signaling a shift in demand toward green investment options. (Bloomberg)

Jim Cramer, television host of the investment-advice show Mad Money, declared fossil fuels dead last Friday, acknowledging a shift towards sustainability among investors after disappointing fourth-quarter earnings reports from ExxonMobil and Chevron. (CNBC)

Young American farmers, who have limited government support compared to their older counterparts, are less able to recover when extreme weather destroys harvests and sickens livestock. (Grist)

Equity
A recent study found evidence that resource scarcity and stress related to climate change are increasing gender-based violence, imposing disproportionate impacts on women and girls. (The Guardian)

A new off-grid solar company is bringing renewable power to the Navajo Nation, which has the highest rate of homes without electricity in the U.S. (The New York Times)

A newly released diversity report card examined the top 40 US-based green NGOs and foundations and found that while there has been an increase in gender and ethnic diversity on staffs and boards since 2017, much work remains to be done. (Grist)

Health
A new study revealed that rapid weather variability, which is increasingly common due to climate change, heightens the risk and severity of seasonal flu epidemics. (Yale Environment 360)
Kicker
In honor of Rosa Parks’ birthday and her fight for a just transportation system, February 4 was celebrated as Transit Equity Day. Sign this petition to demand that your state and local officials adopt clean power public transit that is affordable and accessible to all.
“Oil and gas firms find themselves alongside tobacco companies as businesses that threaten the health and wellbeing of everyone on this planet.”
– Anna Bateson, CEO of The Guardian newspaper
Have feedback on this issue? Email us.

Press Inquiry