Solutions Series Vol. 2

Just The Good Stuff

1. The UK Had It’s First Coal Free Week Since the 1880s

And it’s about to become the new norm. The UK plans to phase out all coal power plants by 2025 with plans to go nearly emission-free by 2050.

“We lead the world when it comes to tackling climate change and we want to carry on breaking records, which is why we’ve put foundations in place to allow our renewables sector to thrive…We’re now on a path to become the first major economy to legislate for net zero emissions,” – Business and Energy Secretary Greg Clark.

2. Renewable Energy Surpassed Coal

The U.S. may not have run a whole week without coal, but for the first time in history, U.S. renewables generated more electricity than coal. While spring is an unsurprising time for this shift (few people using furnaces or air conditioning) it’s a trend that is expected to continue and grow in frequency.

“Coal’s proponents may dismiss these monthly and quarterly ups and downs in generation share as unimportant, but we believe they are indicative of the fundamental disruption happening across the electric generation sector,” Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis author Dennis Wamsted writes. “As natural gas achieved earlier, renewable generation is catching up to coal, and faster than forecast.”

3. Sustainable Investments Are Going Up

More and more people are putting their money toward sustainable investments, with potential policy measures to limit carbon emissions already being priced into some markets. And now, there are more than 2,100 signatories to the United Nation’s Principles for Responsible Investing (PRI), which commits investors and investment managers to more responsible investment practices. Those 2,100 signatories represent $81 TRILLION of assets.

4. We’re About to Know the Exact Air Pollution from Every Power Plant in the World

We can set all the air quality and emissions standards we want, but if we don’t have good data on those emissions (which we historically haven’t) it’s pretty hard to enforce those standards. That’s where the nonprofit WattTime comes in. Using satellite imaging and artificial intelligence, WattTime will track all emissions from powerplants around the globe in real time––and they’re going to make that data available to the public. Not only will this help clean energy companies source their projects in places where they can maximize emissions reductions, but it will also help make a global issue VERY visible to the public.

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