The European Union announced this week that it would regulate emissions from the shipping industry for the first time.
Starting in 2024, shipping companies operating in European ports will be compelled to purchase carbon credits corresponding to at least 40% of their emissions. Those requirements will quickly scale up to 70% in 2025, then 100% in 2026.
The European Union’s Emissions Trading System has been active since 2005, but until now had left out emissions from the shipping industry due primarily to a lack of alternatives. No less than 90% of the world’s goods travel in shipping containers at some point in their supply chain journey and fossil fuels are still the only viable fuel to propel commercial vessels around the globe.
The short on-ramp for the new regulations is designed to usher in both long and short-term changes in the shipping industry. Increased costs associated with fossil fuels are expected to push the industry to invest in low-carbon innovations such as green hydrogen or green ammonia, but those technologies are still not quite ready for prime time.
The world’s largest shipping companies said as much on the sidelines of COP27 when they announced a commitment to net-zero emissions… by 2050. The European Union is hoping to nudge that target up a couple of decades to fall in line with more ambitious proposals in other parts of the world.
Until then, cargo ships have more immediate options for reducing fuel consumption. The first would be to simply slow down. One study showed that a 10% reduction in speed produced a 27% hourly reduction in fuel consumption for container ships. Adapting ships to plug into ports’ electrical grids when they reach land would also eliminate the need to burn fuel while idling to keep electricity running on board.
Then there’s black carbon. Ships emit a particulate known as black carbon— the result of incompletely burnt fuel, and an example of the rare short-lived climate change contributor. Black carbon only stays in the atmosphere for a few days, but it attracts the sun’s rays while it’s in the air. When those sun-heated particles land on snow, they accelerate snow melt and contribute to the loss of ice in places like the Arctic.
Electrification will be key to reduce the emissions associated with shipping, which account for 3% of the world’s carbon profile, on par with fully industrialized countries like Japan and Germany.
Brazil’s incoming environmental minister announced the new administration will cancel a series of planned natural methane gas pipelines and powerplants as one of its first official acts.
Brazilian President-elect Lula da Silva returned to power earlier this year on a climate action platform that included promises to halt the nauseating levels of deforestation encouraged under his predecessor, Jair Bolsonaro.
Since then, Lula has promised to halt deforestation full stop once he takes over, and last week floated a pact in cooperation with the soy industry to protect the Cerrado savanna. The Cerrado’s rich network of roots acts as a major carbon sink that is teetering toward becoming a carbon source, on the order of 3.2 Gigatons of CO2, due to deforestation for soy and cow ranching.
But Lula also made clear during his campaign that he supports the expansion of Brazilian offshore oil exports well into the future. Brazil only produces 12% of its electricity with oil, but crude is a critical revenue source for a country laser-focused on lifting its people out of poverty.
Lula received a hero’s welcome at COP27 last month with his expected Environment Minister Marina Silva in tow.
Marina Silva said the proposed methane gas network would line the pockets of Brazilian energy executives with $22 billion of taxpayer money over four years, and roughly another billion to keep it running each year. Time will tell how far Lula’s government will go to reduce emissions, but for now the most egregiously expensive ones are the easiest to cut.
Construction of new wind farms has been banned in the UK since 2015, but those days could soon be over. New UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is reportedly looking at reversing the ban to help ease surging energy costs.
Wind energy comes in at about a quarter of wholesale electricity prices in the UK, which has reached historic highs. It’s unlikely that any repeal will bring back commercial-scale farms but it could create room for smaller installations at a local level.
Historically, resistance to wind farms in the UK has been of the NIMBY variety, with local mayors and authorities leading the movement in 2015 to ban wind farms. But with energy subsidies due to be reduced in coming weeks, municipalities are increasingly looking for quick solutions for a potential energy crunch.
Small wind turbines can be assembled in a matter of days, if not hours, and have slowly won over conservative advocates in the country as the energy crisis drags on.
Check out some of the latest featured jobs below. If you don't see anything that speaks to you, you can always go to Climatebase to explore thousands of other opportunities.
"Spherical is a strategic design and integrative research studio supporting projects regenerating the health and integrity of Earth’s living systems. Current Project Spherical is building a field kit of open-source tools to support community-driven climate resilience in Los Angeles. ..."
"The Global Warming Mitigation Project is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that exists to pave the way to a livable future; we bring visibility, credibility, and funding to science-backed climate solutions across the globe while providing inclusive and positive opportunities for individuals, companies, and organizations to contribute to climate mitigation efforts. ..."
"Sunstone Credit is democratizing access to solar for businesses. We provide flexible financing solutions for businesses and non-profits of all sizes, offering commercial solar loans with borrower-friendly terms and an efficient application process ..."
"The New York City Energy Efficiency Corporation (NYCEEC), the country’s first local green bank, is a non-profit specialty financier of projects that save energy and reduce greenhouse gases. ..."
"SPAN is developing products to enable rapid adoption of renewable energy and deliver an intuitive interface for the home. We believe that powering your home with clean energy should be a simple and delightful experience that is technology-forward and human-centered. ..."
They are hiring across the following departments:
"Impact Experience builds bridges and deep relationships between impact investors, foundations, corporates, entrepreneurs, artists and local leaders to co-create solutions with marginalized communities. ..."
"The US Department of Energy is hiring for multiple roles with the DOE Loans Office. ..."
"Charge Robotics is a YC-backed startup building robots that build large-scale solar farms. Demand for new solar projects is booming (1/5th of all the solar that exists in the US was installed last year!), but today’s construction companies can’t keep up due to limited labor resources. ... "
"We build APIs that connect to EVs, home batteries, solar panels and other energy hardware so our customer can build awesome green energy apps. An electricity grid powered by renewable sources needs flexible and intelligent demand. ..."
"Voltus is a fully remote clean energy technology platform. Our mission is to be the Distributed Energy Platform that fulfills the promise of the energy transition. The Voltus Platform connects any distributed energy resource to any energy market across the US and Canada, providing flexibility, reliability, and resilience to the grid. ..."
They are hiring across the following departments:
"We’re a leading energy technology company providing a better experience for our customers through transparency, automation and simplicity. Better for the planet, through real long-term investment in renewable generation and a low CO2 future. We make energy green and flexible for consumers, with fair and transparent pricing. ..."
"Sunwealth’s mission is to invest in the future of energy, generating financial, social and environmental returns for investors and communities. We are a team of industry experts who have built careers in solar development, structured finance and impact investing. ..."
"Tapestry is a team within X working to rapidly decarbonize the electric grid. Our mission is to help create a shared understanding of what is happening on the grid for everyone who is involved in building, managing and using it. ..."
"ev.energy is a technology company on a mission to decarbonize mobility. Recently named “World’s Best Energy Start-up,” we are a team of former management consultants, data scientists and software developers working on an industry-leading algorithm that obtains real-time data from utilities to charge electric vehicles with the cheapest, greenest energy available while supporting the long-term stability and resilience of the ..."
"Nitricity is a startup addressing climate change. We are innovating in an essential chemical industry that supports global food systems. The bedrock of modern agriculture is the production, distribution, and application of the essential nutrients found in fertilizers. However, nitrogen fertilizer is currently made in coal- and gas-fired facilities located hundreds to thousands of miles away from farmers who need ..."
"ClimateView is a Swedish climate tech startup that helps cities transform climate planning into progress. We combine data, agent-based modeling, and interface design to help cities manage the transition to zero carbon economies. ..."
That's it for this week! Remember, you can always view thousands of more jobs on Climatebase.org.
👋 Get discovered. Complete your profile to be seen by hundreds of employers hiring on Climatebase.
🚀 Accelerate your climate career. Apply to join the Climatebase Fellowship.
🌱 Hiring? Post your jobs to reach tens-of-thousands of Climatebase users and over 30,000 weekly newsletter subscribers.
👋 New here? Subscribe!
❤️️ Share a link to this week's edition
We sat down with Dimitry Gershenson, the co-founder and CEO of Enduring Planet. Dimitry and his co-founders Erin and Josh are no strangers to climate finance, and they’re leveraging their expertise to help climate tech startups and SMBs get the funding they need to save the planet.
A world where crops risk disappearing offers an opportunity for climate tech.
Brood X is coming.
In today's edition of This Week in Climate, we look at evolving cooling solutions to combat record heat.
In today's edition of This Week in Climate, we examine climate change and the rise of disease, viruses, and antibiotic resistance.