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Companies Moving To Implement Large-Scale Low-Carbon Technology Projects

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Climate Emergency - PeoplesClimate-Melb-IMG_8280 by takver via flickr

The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) announce the release of LCTPi2016: From Ambition to Implementation Report, as COP22 opens in Morocco today.

The new report shares first year progress and results from the Low Carbon Technology Partnerships initiative (LCTPi), the ground-breaking business-led program to bring scaled-up solutions to meet the climate challenge.

The initiative was welcomed last year at COP21 as CEOs publicly expressed support for a set of LCTPi ambitions and mobilized their companies to implement the LCTPi action plans. 2016 has been the year to start making good on the promises made.


96 companies have now made 103 public endorsements of LCTPi and are moving to implementation. Nearly 80 partners are working with companies across the eight active LCTPi working groups.

LCTPi is an essential driver for collaborative initiatives and since the start of LCTPi, 165 companies have been part of the program. Over 1,500 business representatives and policy makers have contributed to shaping the solutions in international dialogues conducted in key emerging markets over 2015 and 2016.

The report includes results from each of the eight active LCTPi working groups on cement, chemicals, climate smart agriculture, energy efficiency in buildings, forests and forest products as carbon sinks, low carbon freight, renewables and sustainable transport fuels.

The above-mentioned LCTPi methodology is applied by the eight active working groups and consists in the following steps:


• quantifying the emissions reduction potential for the sector which sets the working group’s ambition;
• assessment of the barriers to achieve that ambition and identification of solutions to overcome those barriers;
• development of action plans against which groups will focus their efforts;
• setting a monitoring framework with annual and longer term performance indicators; and
• preparing an annual progress report that includes outcomes and deliverables.

LCTPi companies are large and influential. The combined revenue of companies engaged in 2016 exceeds US$ 2.25 trillion and 43 LCTPi companies are listed in the Forbes Global 2,000 list. LCTPi is truly global in its reach.

LCTPi companies have operations in over 200 countries and territories around the world.

National and regional engagement is increasing across the LCTPi working groups, for example, three new energy efficiency in buildings platforms were launched in Jakarta, Shanghai and Jaipur and the climate smart agricultureworking group will shortly roll out programs across north America, Brazil, India, Ghana and the ASEAN region.

The LCTPi 2016: Ambition to Implementation report is available here.

96 companies publicly engaged in LCTPi (as of November 2016):

ABB, Acciona S.A., Akzo Nobel N.V., Ambuja Cement, APRIL Group, ARCADIS, ArcelorMittal S.A., Audi, BT, Bunge, Carbon Recycling International, Cementos Argos, CEMEX, China National Building Material Group, China Resources Cement, CLP Power Hong Kong Limited, Companhia Geral de Cal e Cimento S.A., Copersucar, CPFL Energia, CRH plc, Dalmia Cement (Bharat) Limited, Diageo plc., DNV GL, DSM N.V., Dunar Food, DuPont, EDF, EDP, Enel, Eskom, Evonik Industries AG, EY LLP, Fibria, First Solar, Forestal Mininco S.A. (CMPC Forestal), Friesland Campina, Granbio, Grupo Cementos de Chihuahua, S.A.B. de C.V. (GCC), HeidelbergCement AG, Iberdrola, Infosys Limited, InterCement, Italcementi Group, ITC, Jain Irrigation, Joule Unlimited, Kellogg Company, LafargeHolcim, LanzaTech, Leveraged Green Energy, Metsä Group, Michelin, Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings Corporation, Monsanto Company, Nestlé S.A., Norton Rose Fulbright LLP, Novozymes A/S, NRG Energy, Olam International Ltd., Old Mutual, PepsiCo, Inc., POET, LLC, PwC, Red Rock Biofuels, Route Monkey, SAB Miller, Scania, SCG Cement, Schneider Electric, SGS S.A., Shree Cement Limited, Siemens AG, Skanska AB, SkyNRG, Solvay S.A., Starbucks Coffee Company, State Grid Corporation of China, Stora Enso, Suzano, Syngenta International AG, Tata Group, The Coca-Cola Company, The Navigator Company, Titan Cement Group, Total, Tyson Foods, UltraTech Cement Limited, Unilever, United Technologies, UPL, UPM, UPS, Votorantim Cimentos, West China Cement Limited, Yara International ASA, Yes Bank

Quotes from participating member companies and partners

“The transition to a low-carbon economy is unstoppable, and with the Paris Agreement now in force, national governments can and should look to business for solutions that will help achieve their national determined contributions. Through LCTPi, business is delivering the latest innovations, technology and ready solutions. This sends a strong signal of support to governments and policymakers, as they look to implement their ambitions and head towards the first review process in 2018.” – Peter Bakker, CEO and President, WBCSD

below50:

“No more significant organization, in potential, has appeared on the horizon in the history of renewable fuels — owing to its global reach, low-carbon focus, and the reputation of the players involved. We’ll be fascinated to see how [below50] turns ambition to practical action over the coming months” Biofuels Digest, June 2016

Cement:

“CNBM supports LCTPi and will effectively promote the technology communication and cooperation in the cement industry. Following the suggested action plans, our Company will accelerate technical innovations and optimize solutions in key fields. It is important to accomplish low-carbon development from materials to production and application, to explore the way of harmonizing the industry with nature.” – Zhiping Song, Chairman, China National Building Materials (CNBM) Group

“Combining strong focus and stakeholders drive enables low carbon technology initiatives to be successfully implemented. It is simply not possible to achieve long-term sustainable growth without taking consistent measures to promote sustainable economy. This is a global matter and involves the development of technologies across all value chain drivers of the industry.” – Walter Dissinger, Global CEO of Votorantim Cimentos

Low-Carbon Freight:

“With a recent International Transport Forum study projecting that freight volumes could quadruple by 2050, the LCTPi Low-Carbon Freight initiative is an important catalyst to spearhead solutions to help manage and mitigate transport sector emissions. UPS is glad to collaborate, innovate and share our learnings.” – Alan Gershenhorn, Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer for UPS.

Chemicals:

“As an ‘industry of industries’, the chemical sector is a key enabler to the low-carbon future. We engage with our partners within the industry and along the value chain on low-carbon, sustainable solutions. A common framework for product portfolio sustainability assessment will steer others across the industry and along value chains towards more low carbon solutions. The technology roadmaps on breakthrough technologies and on the synergies of CCU with other energy-intensive industries are also critical for the chemical industry to understand where we will invest in new technologies in the future. Together, initiatives such as these have the potential to stimulate action towards achieving the Paris Accord and I encourage others to join us on this journey.” – Jean-Pierre Clamadieu, CEO, Solvay

Energy

Are the UK Governments Plans for the Energy Sector Smart?

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The revolution in the energy sector marches on, wind turbines and solar panels are harnessing more renewable energy than ever before – so where is it all leading?

The UK government have recently announced plans to modernise the way we produce, store and use electricity. And, if realised, the plans could be just the thing to bring the energy sector in line with 21st century technology and ideologies.


Central to the plans is an initiative that will see smart meters installed in homes and businesses the length and breadth of the country – and their aim? To create an environment where electricity can be managed more efficiently.

The news has prompted some speculation about how energy suppliers will react and many are predicting a price war. This could benefit consumers of electricity and investors, many of whom may be looking to make a profit by trading energy company shares online using platforms such as Oanda – but the potential for good news doesn’t end there.

Introducing New Technology

The plan, titled Smart Systems and Flexibility is being rolled out in the hope that it will have a positive impact in three core areas.

  • To offer consumers greater control by making smart meters available for all homes and businesses by 2020. Energy users will be able to monitor, control and record the amount of energy they use.
  • Incentivise energy suppliers to change the manner in which they buy electricity, to offer more smart tariffs and more off-peak periods for energy consumption.
  • Introduce new standards for electrical appliances – it is hoped that the new wave of appliances will recognise when electricity is at its cheapest and at its most expensive and respond accordingly.

How the Plans Will Affect Solar Energy

Around 7 million houses in the UK have solar panels and the government say that their plan will benefit them as they will be able to store electricity on batteries. The stored energy can then be used by the household and excess energy can be exported to the national grid – in this instance lower tariffs or even payment for the excess energy will bring down annual costs significantly.


The rate of return on energy exported to the national grid is currently between 6% and 10%, but there are many variables to take into account, such as, the cost of battery storage and light levels. Still, those with state-of-the-art solar electricity systems could end up with an annual profit after selling their excess energy.

The Internet of Things

Much of what the plans set out to achieve are linked to the now ubiquitous “internet of things” – where, for example, appliances and heating systems are connected to the internet in order to make them function more smartly.

Companies like Hive have already made great inroads into this type of technology, but the road that the government plans are heading down, will, potentially, go much further -blockchain technology looms and has already proved to be a game changer in the world of currency.

Blockchain Technology

It has already been suggested that the peer to peer selling of energy and exporting it to the national grid may eventually be done using blockchain technology.

“The blockchain is an incorruptible digital ledger of economic transactions that can be programmed to record not just financial transactions but virtually everything of value.”

Don and Alex Tapscott, Blockchain Revolution (2016)

The upshot of the government’s plans for the revolution of the energy sector, is that technology will play an indelible role in making it more efficient, more flexible and ultimately more sustainable.

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Energy

4 Case Studies on the Benefits of Solar Energy

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Demand for solar energy is growing at a surprising rate. New figures from SolarPower Europe show that solar energy production has risen 50% since the summer of 2016.

However, many people are still skeptical of the benefits of solar energy.Does it actually make a significant reduction in our carbon footprint? Is it actually cost-effective for the company over the long-run?


A number of case studies have been conducted, which indicate solar energy can be enormously beneficial. Here are some of the most compelling studies on the subject.

1.     Boulder Nissan

When you think of companies that leverage solar power, car dealerships probably aren’t the first ones that come to mind. However, Boulder Nissan is highly committed to promoting green energy. They worked with Independent Power Systems to setup a number of solar cells. Here were the results:

  • Boulder Nissan has reduced coal generated electricity by 65%.
  • They are on track to run on 100% renewable energy within the next 13 years.
  • Boulder Nissan reduced CO2 emissions by 416,000 lbs. within the first year after installing their solar panels.

This is one of the most impressive solar energy case studies a small business has published in recent years. It shows that even small companies in rural communities can make a major difference by adapting solar energy.

2.     Valley Electric Association

In 2015, the Valley Electric Association (VEA) created an 80-acre solar garden. Before retiring from the legislature, U.S. Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid praised the new project as a way to make the state more energy dependent and reduce our carbon footprint.


“This facility will provide its customers with the opportunity to purchase 100 percent of their electricity from clean energy produced in Nevada,” Reid told reporters with the Pahrump Valley Times. “That’s a step forward for the Silver State, but it also proves that utilities can work with customers to provide clean renewable energy that they demand.”

The solar energy that VEA produced was drastically higher than anyone would have predicted. SolarWorld estimates that the solar garden created 32,680,000 kwh every year, which was enough to power nearly 4,000 homes.

This was a major undertaking for a purple state, which may inspire their peers throughout the Midwest to develop solar gardens of their own. It will reduce dependency on the electric grid, which is a problem for many remote states in the central part of the country.

3.     Las Vegas Casinos

A number of Las Vegas casinos have started investing in solar panels over the last couple of years. The Guardian reports that many of these casinos have cut costs considerably. Some of them are even selling the energy back to the grid.

“It’s no accident that we put the array on top of a conference center. This is good business for us,” Cindy Ortega, chief sustainability officer at MGM Resorts told Guardian reporters. “We are looking at leaving the power system, and one of the reasons for that is we can procure more renewable energy on the open market.”

There have been many benefits for casinos using solar energy. They are some of the most energy-intensive institutions in the world, so this has helped them become much more cost-effective. It also helps minimize disruptions to their customers learning online keno strategies in the event of any problems with the electric grid.

4.     Boston College

Boston College has been committed to many green initiatives over the years. A group of researchers experimented with solar cells on different parts of the campus to see where they could produce the most electricity. They discovered that the best locationwas at St. Clement’sHall. The solar cells there dramatically. It would also reduce CO2 emissions by 521,702 lbs. a year and be enough to save 10,869 trees.

Boston College is exploring new ways to expand their usage of solar cells. They may be able to invest in more effective solar panels that can generate far more solar energy.

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