Oil and gas industry faces a defining decade for its future, says Environmental Defense Fund director

first_imgWhen new BP boss Bernard Looney announced last month he would oversee the oil major’s transition to net zero by 2050, he credited consultation with the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) as a key influence in shaping his decision.The US-based advocacy group has established itself as a prominent voice in the ear of major companies around the world — advising on a range of sustainability issues, as well as how to maximise opportunities presented by the response to climate change.For the oil and gas industry, in particular, it says the next 10 years will be critical for executives, who will need to make tough decisions that will come to define the long-term success or failure of their organisations.“Business-as-usual for the oil and gas industry is over,” EDF senior director Ben Ratner announces to a room packed with industry delegates at London’s IP Week.“The defining decade has arrived. This is the decade in which the decisions energy executives make will define their companies’ future viability, and shape the standing of the entire industry on which every company in the value chain depends.” Environmental Defense Fund director Ben Ratner addressed oil and gas delegates at London IP Week on why the industry needs to embrace a low-carbon future Environmental Defense Fund’s Ben Ratner spoke at IP Week 2020 (Credit: Twitter/Energy Institute) At London’s IP Week, senior director for the Environmental Defense Fund’s business energy transition team, Ben Ratner, took to the stage to address oil and gas delegates on what he sees as a “defining decade” for the future of the industry. Andrew Fawthrop was in the audience for NS Energy to hear what he had to say. Investor decisions are changing the future outlook of the oil and gasThe subject of climate change is, without doubt, working its way up corporate agendas with greater urgency than ever before. Several significant developments, even since the turn of the year, emphasising the fact that the oil and gas industry must sit up and take notice, or risk both financial and reputational damage.Ratner tells his audience: “The CEO of BlackRock says climate change has become a defining factor in companies’ long-term prospects. Jeff Bezos donates $10bn to climate change solutions. BP’s CEO announces a set of new ambitions to net zero by 2050 or sooner.“Financial analyst Jim Cramer goes on live TV and goes so far as to declare fossil fuel stocks dead. Not because they are not paying dividends, but because an increasing group of investors are unwilling to tolerate the environmental and social costs that come with those dividends.“Already investors are making decisions, like whether to maintain exposure to oil and gas for a set of reasons — and, if so, which companies deserve their capital and their trust. The talent are making their decisions about what kind of industry they want to work in and what kind of company they want to work for.”center_img Ratner tells industry to think of renewables as ‘core growth’While some sections of the environmental movement call for an immediate end to all fossil fuel activity and the companies associated with it, Ratner says his goal, and the goal of his organisation, is to work alongside industry and policymakers as a partner to support them transition to a low-carbon economy.Citing International Energy Agency data showing oil and gas firms currently only direct about 1% of their capital expenditure into “non-core” areas — effectively meaning renewables and clean technology — he tells the delegates to instead think of these business segments as “core growth”.He adds: “Whatever we disagree on, I think there’s common ground that oil and gas is not going to have a massive growth trajectory.“We can discuss and debate when peak oil is going to be, but massive growth is not on the horizon. However, we have already seen a massive hockey-stick adoption in electrification and renewables.” Measurable goals and advocacy for climate policy are key to progressFour pillars make up this strategy for transforming the face of the oil and gas industry: commitment to ambitious goals, support for science-based climate policy, collaboration to achieve results at scale, and innovation.Ratner says the first step for any company is to set measurable and ambitious targets in line with the Paris Agreement, while putting pressure on governments and regulators for policies that reward environmental performance.“Conventional wisdom has taught us that what gets measured gets managed,” he says.“We face a systems problem that requires a systems approach to deliver a systems solution. Any serious set of climate goals must include Scope 3 emissions — they should be at priority level one.“Net zero by 2050 is an ambition, but it’s a distant point on the horizon to steer the ship towards.“The medium tenure for an oil and gas CEO is about four and a half years, so long-term ambitions must be backed by interim targets that help drive actual plans, and I would encourage you to include measurable goals for 2025 and 2030.“Change this big requires government and business to work together. I know that stricter environmental regulation doesn’t come easily for many people in the industry, but times are changing, and there are good business reasons to make seeking strong climate policies a part of your business as usual.“Well-designed policies send signals for innovation — they reward environmental performance and make it easier for companies to turn that big ship and achieve their goals cost-effectively with the support of government and other stakeholders.“When I talk to investors I hear their growing appreciation not just of the essential role of ambitious government action but of the influential and important duty of companies to engage and support governments in stepping up.“If industry can unlock the same innovation above ground as it has below ground in the last century, this defining decade could well be yours.“In an era that’s fluid and competitive, all companies must put their innovation agenda front and centre because the opportunity is that great and it’s what customers, investors, employees and civil society demand.”last_img read more

Spike in activity

first_imgSpike Global, the software company that provides a resident portal app, Spike Living, has grown its client list by an impressive 120 per cent in the last nine months. Spike Living is white labelled and tailored for each client, creating a customer-friendly communication tool allowing residents to interact with their neighbours and the management team whilst connecting them to amenities and services.Spike Living creates communities whilst improving operational efficiencies. Although popular before the COVID-19 crisis, the need for such software has become even more apparent over the last six months.Jeremy Heath-Smith, founder and CEO of Spike Global commented, “Lockdown has had profound impacts on the property sector. Not only did it have to respond to changing government policy, employees working from home and restricted movement, it had to find a way to function and communicate where traditional means had been removed.”Spike also offers a tenancy management software solution plus their recently launched workplace portal.www.spikeglobal.comSpike Global customer-friendly communication tool Jeremy Heath-Smith resident portal app proptech app November 30, 2020Jenny van BredaWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Hong Kong remains most expensive city to rent with London in 4th place30th April 2021 Home » News » Spike in activity previous nextProptechSpike in activityThe Negotiator30th November 2020041 Viewslast_img read more

Finke Furniture Company By Pat Sides

first_img Finke’s Furniture was a major retailer in downtown Evansville during most of the nineteenth-century.Founded in 1902 by brothers L. B and C. E. Finke, the store was originally located at 623 Main Street. In 1914, it moved to 7 S. E. Seventh Street, “37 steps from Main,” as their famous slogan advertised.Brass foot plates were embedded in the sidewalk to guide customers to the store. The building also housed Evansville’s first radio station, WGBF, which went on the air in 1922, with Harold Finke serving as the first announcer.The Finke family retained ownership of the business until 1968, and the downtown store closed in 1975, soon after a new one opened on S. Green River Road. In 1989, Finke’s was sold again and renamed Kittle’s.FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

Costa sales perk up Whitbread

first_imgCosta Coffee, the Whitbread-owned retail chain, unveiled another set of blockbuster results this morning – after it revealed that its underlying profit had increased by 41.8% to £27.8m.The company, reporting its interim management statement for the six months to 1 September, said that worldwide sales had soared by 23.3% to £383.6m in the period and that UK like-for-like sales (LFLs) had improved by 6.7%.Costa, which recently opened its 2,000th store, said it had been boosted on the drinks front by the launch of an Ice Cold Costa range and the introduction of Costa Light – a coffee that has less caffeine and fewer calories.However, the group gave no indication of the breakdown of its food sales.Andy Harrison, chief executive of Whitbread – which also owns Premier Inn and several pub chains – said the group-wide performance had put the company “on track” to deliver full-year results in line with expectations. However, he also warned that trading on a month-to-month basis continued to be “variable in the face of the challenging consumer environment”.City analyst Mark Brumby at Langton Capital described Costa’s performance as “storming”.For Whitbread as a whole, total sales increased by 10.7% to £891.3m, up from £805.4m the year before – and group LFLs had grown by 3.3%. Whitbread delivered an interim dividend of 17.50p – a whopping 55.6% increase.>> Costa Coffee to “recharge” its siteslast_img read more

BBB: How to tell fake shopping websites from real websites

first_img Pinterest Google+ (Photo supplied/Indiana News Service) What is bad for businesses can sometimes mean sales for shoppers, but the latest coronavirus scam is causing the Better Business Bureau Serving Central Indiana to remind you to make sure you aren’t falling for a con before you jump on a deal.You are scrolling through your Facebook feed or doing a web search when you come across an advertisement for a going-out-of-business sale. The company is closing because of COVID-19 and selling off its inventory at what appears to be a great discount.If you click on the ad or type in the promoted URL, it will lead you to a website selling anything from designer goods to electronics to novelty items. From looking at the photos, you may think the products seem like a great deal only to buy it and find out it’s nothing like it seems.“One of two things is going to happen. Either the quality of the item you get is not going to be what you expect or you’re going to give your money and you’re not going to get anything in return,” says Tim Maniscalo, president and CEO of Better Business Bureau Serving Central Indiana. “Scammers have put up these fake websites saying they’re going out of business and they have fantastic prices on these great goods. These people will try and copy a well-known brand, a well-known store, that type of thing.”Maniscalo says that recently happened to a person who ordered $250 worth of “designer” clothes from a New York-based store. Instead, they received low-quality items shipped from overseas.“What was supposed to be cotton and/or linen was the worst quality polyester,” they told BBB. “The clothes, in general, were nowhere close to the advertised quality on the website images. Definitely NOT the quality I paid for.”The key is knowing how to spot the difference between a legitimate and a phony website.“Up in the URL bar, you should look for the letters ‘https.’ ‘S’ is the important letter there. That gives you additional security,” says Maniscalo.If it begins with “https” instead of “http” it means the site is secured using an SSL certificate (the s stands for secure).“Also a lot of times, those URL bars will have the little icon of the lock. That’s also some added security,” says Maniscalo.Maniscalo says it’s so important to follow these tips because if you fall victim to this scam or any scam, it poses two challenges.“If the scammers know the police are on to them, they’re just going to shut that website down and ten minutes later, they’re going to have another website come up. They’re probably going to be in a country where that government is not particularly interested in cooperating with international law enforcement,” says Maniscalo. “It’s almost impossible to catch them and when you do give them your money, that money is almost immediately sent outside the country and you may never get it back.”Maniscalo urges you to go to https://www.bbb.org/scamtracker/ to find scams near you and report a scam if you think one is happening. Twitter Facebook Facebook Twitter WhatsApp Pinterest By Jon Zimney – September 26, 2020 0 452 CoronavirusIndianaLocalMichiganNews Google+ BBB: How to tell fake shopping websites from real websites WhatsApp Previous article18 year-old South Bend man charged with two shootingsNext articleMan, 51, sentenced to 50 years after violent home invasion robbery Jon ZimneyJon Zimney is the News and Programming Director for News/Talk 95.3 Michiana’s News Channel and host of the Fries With That podcast. Follow him on Twitter @jzimney.last_img read more

City of South bend to offer free Christmas tree disposal starting next week

first_img Google+ City of South bend to offer free Christmas tree disposal starting next week (“Christmas Tree Disposal” by Chris Marchant, CC BY 2.0) Pinterest WhatsApp IndianaLocalNews Twitter Twitter WhatsAppcenter_img Google+ The City of South Bend will offer free Christmas tree disposal for residents within city limits from Monday, January 4 to Thursday, January 28. Christmas tree collection will take place on the same day as trash pickup. Residents can schedule their pickup by submitting an online request at southbendin.gov/treepickup or by calling 311.Residents are asked to follow the guidelines for safe and efficient tree pickup:All trees must be placed at the curb by 6:00 a.m. on the day of pickup. Trees should not be placed in the street or alley. Cars should not be parked on top or in front of the tree, as this could hamper crews from collecting it.All lights, ornaments, plastic coverings/wraps and metals, such as nails or tree stands, must be removed from the tree prior to pick up. Items left on trees can injure employees or seriously damage the tree shredding equipment, leaving it inoperable.Artificial trees and trees containing any metal, glass or wire will not be collected. Residents will be responsible for the proper disposal of these items.Free Christmas tree pickup only includes the removal of one tree per household. Additional Christmas trees can be removed and billed at a rate of $10 per tree. After January 28, any Christmas tree pickups scheduled will be used as the residents’ free monthly yard waste extra pickup. For more information on Christmas tree disposal, visit southbendin.gov/treepickup or call 311. Facebook By 95.3 MNC – December 29, 2020 0 190 Pinterest Facebook Previous articleJoliet woman arrested after alcohol-fueled crash on U.S. 12Next articleMan accused of armed break-in at former workplace near Middlebury 95.3 MNCNews/Talk 95.3 Michiana’s News Channel is your breaking news and weather station for northern Indiana and southwestern Michigan.last_img read more

Bonnaroo Unveils Two SuperJam Lineups

first_imgThe Bonnaroo SuperJam has become one of the most unique and collaborative sets of music at any festival on the circuit today. Artists from different genres come together for one night only to produce something wonderful, memorable, and timeless. Last year’s “Heart, Soul & Spirit: A Tribute To Tennessee” saw Kamasi Washington lead Miguel, GRiZ, Devonte Hynes, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, Eric Krasno & The Shady Horns, Allen Stone, Vulfpeck, Michelle Williams,The Internet, Chicano Batman, Lizzo, and more through a spiritual celebration of the state that has housed Bonnaroo for its 15-year reign as one of the premier music North American music festivals.Today, the festival announces that the Bonnaroo SuperJam theme is “The Soul Shakedown.” Presented by Preservation Hall, the SuperJam will feature Jon Batiste (Stay Human, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert), members of The Head and the Heart, Sam Cohen, George Porter Jr. (The Meters), Lecrae, Margo Price, Tank and the Bangas, Lukas Nelson, Nicole Atkins, and Flint Eastwood. The festival also promises that more names will added soon! Additionally, the Bluegrass Situation Superjam hosted by Ed Helms has revealed its lineup. This year’s jam will see the actor/comedian/banjo maestro backed by the Bryan Sutton Band and joined by such stars as Martina McBride, Aaron Lee Tasjan, Greensky Bluegrass, Mandolin Orange, River Whyless, Gaby Moreno, Baskery and Lillie Mae. According to the press release, “Additional special guests – both announced and unannounced – will take the stage during both SuperJam events, assuring two memorable sets full of surprises, musical discovery, and unexpected excitement.”Headlining the 2017 Bonnaroo, going down June 8-11, will be U2, Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Weeknd, and Chance The Rapper. U2’s performance comes in the midst of their 30th anniversary “The Joshua Tree” tour, and their set will include a full playing on the classic 1987 album.The full lineup continues with Major Lazer, Flume, Lorde, The xx, Travis Scott, Cage The Elephant, Marshmello, The Head and The Heart, Big Gigantic, Glass Animals, Future Islands, Tory Lanez and more. Entries like Umphrey’s McGee, Greensky Bluegrass, Turkuaz, Khruangbin, Twiddle and a few others are throwbacks to the festival’s roots in the jam scene, though this year’s lineup is distinctly focused on larger pop, rock, hip hop and EDM performers.Additional performers include Tove Lo, Crystal Castles, Portugal. The Man, Tegan & Sara, Milky Chance, Cold War Kids, Yellow Claw, Kaleo and more.You can check out Bonnaroo’s website for more information and tickets.last_img read more

Wood recognized with Planck-Humboldt Medal

first_imgIn the inaugural award ceremony held Wednesday in Berlin, Robert Wood, together with the American mathematician Sam Payne, received the Max Planck-Humboldt Medal, and British astrophysicist Catherine Heymans received the Max Planck-Humboldt Research Award.The prestigious prizes, which are funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMFT), recognize extraordinary scientists with outstanding future potential.As an electrical engineer and roboticist, Wood has made numerous critical contributions to the field of robotics, and specifically to the subfield of soft robotics that focuses on the design of robots using highly compliant materials. Inspired by the ways in which living organisms move and adapt to their surroundings, soft robots have the potential to be used in many real-world applications for which rigid robots are not suitable.Wood and his team at Harvard’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering and the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) have worked out some of the basic engineering principles for the construction of soft robots at different scales and with different functionalities. These are key to creating soft robots with a much broader range of abilities in the future, including devices that can grasp and manipulate items with dexterity resembling that of the human hand, or that carry out a variety of tasks at different scales or in challenging natural and unstructured environments.Wood is a founding core faculty member of the Wyss Institute and a leader of its Bioinspired Soft Robotics Initiative. He is also the Charles River Professor of Engineering and Applied Sciences at SEAS and a National Geographic Explorer.With a highly multidisciplinary team, he has already developed soft robots that, for example, function as artificial muscles, able to grip and lift objects many times their own weight; small soft endoscopic devices for potential use in surgeries and industrial micromanipulation; and soft gripping devices for deep oceanic research that can be operated remotely to collect fragile specimens. His team increasingly integrates soft robots with new sensor technologies to make them responsive to different control or environmental stimuli, and actuator technologies that rival the remarkable abilities of muscle. To complement these efforts, Wood’s group has developed new fabrication approaches to monolithically integrate new functionalities into soft material architectures, often at scales well below other demonstrations of soft robots.For the 2018 awards, Wood and his two fellow recipients were selected for their unusual ability and future potential to carry out innovative and high-risk research, and to develop new research areas in the natural and engineering sciences. As an additional criterion, the committees also considered researchers’ interest in a research residency or close collaborations with established research groups in Germany. Future awards will also go to researchers from the human sciences and life sciences.“I am deeply honored to have been awarded the Max Planck-Humboldt Medal and I hope this will help to establish close collaborations with German robotics groups who have complementary research interests in the field of soft robotics,” said Wood.“For example, we hope to work with the group of Professor Oliver Brock at the Technical University of Berlin, a leader in soft robotics and specifically in robotic manipulation using soft hands. Forming a collaboration could help us formalize device and algorithm designs that may enable soft robots with human-level dexterity across a range of objects.”The prizes were jointly presented by the president of the Max Planck Society, Martin Stratmann; the president of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Hans-Christian Pape; and the BMFT state secretary, Michael Meister.last_img read more

Saint Mary’s to offer new program for ’Laudato Si’ anniversary

first_imgIn light of Pope Francis’s announcement of the special anniversary celebration of the ‘Laudato Si,’ the Center for Spirituality of Saint Mary’s College is sponsoring a new study-faith-in-action program.The program consists of one to two environmentally-related service projects or immersion experiences, one lecture related to ‘Laudato Si’ and one to two prayer experiences related to care for God’s creation. Students will also attend face-to-face discussion groups about how to take care of the common good and common home, as defined by Francis in the encyclical, throughout the academic year.“‘Laudato Si:’ On Care for Our Common Home” is the second encyclical of Pope Francis. Originally published in 2015, it urged people all over the globe to care for the planet and the poor. Francis declared a special year of observance from May 2020-2021 regarding the goals of the encyclical for its fifth anniversary.“I invite all people of goodwill to take part, to care for our common home and our most vulnerable brothers and sisters,” Francis said in May when he made the announcement.The program is open for “students [who] may be looking to deepen their knowledge on environmental and social issues or to deepen their personal spirituality and commitment to action,” Arlene Montevecchio, the director of the Center for Spirituality, said in an email.In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and other hardships facing the world today, participants will also be invited to reflect on their experiences in a formal presentation at the conclusion of the program, she said.The ‘Laudato si’ program will be run by Montevecchio. She plans on inviting faculty guest speakers to discuss topics including ecosystems, food waste and recovery, eco-friendly lifestyle choices such as vegan eating and the sacraments and spirituality of ‘Laudato Si.’The program will extend into the spring second semester. Depending on the state of the country at that time in regards to the pandemic, Montevecchio said students may also have the opportunity to participate in environmental service projects.The ‘Laudato si’ program is designed for students who wish to “learn more about their own faith, the spiritual and social vision of Pope Francis, and how to make a difference for environmental and social justice,” Montevecchio said.This program is only open to eight to ten Saint Mary’s students, and students who wish to apply should email Montevecchio. Participants will also receive a $300 stipend and certificate along with a copy of ‘Laudato Si’ and a journal. Applications are due by Sept. 16.The College is hosting a lecture series on the same encyclical anniversary this October entitled the 2020 Fall Endowed Lectures Series: A Year of ‘Laudato Si.’ The series is sponsored by the Saint Mary’s College Annual Endowed Lecture Series Fund.The first panel discussion set for Oct. 19 at 7 p.m. is “The Reception of Laudato Si.’” The second panel is entitled “The Signs of the Times and Laudato Si,’” and will be held Oct. 29 at 7 p.m. Both panels will be held virtually.Tags: Center for Spirituality, laudato si’, Pope Francislast_img read more

Institutional Investors Continue to Notch Heavy Losses on Coal Holdings

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Taylor Kuykendall and Junaid Daher for SNL:Across the board, the investment market value of the coal holdings of major institutional investors was rocked by poor performance in the fourth quarter of 2015. The 25 top institutional holders of coal held positions worth about $2.30 billion as of the end of the fourth quarter 2015, down from $2.84 billion in the prior quarter and down from $7.42 billion a year-ago.Of the top 25 investors in coal that held positions in the fourth quarter of 2014, only two have seen the value of their positions grow. Citadel LLC has seen the market value of its coal positions increase 43.8% to $27.0 million spread across eight investment positions and UBS Group AG has seen its coal holdings grow 3.2% to $99.9 million across its 12 coal industry investment positions.Several of the top investors saw their coal positions shrink by more than 80%. On average, the top 25 investors in the coal sector have seen the value of those positions shrink 60.6%.At the end of the fourth quarter of 2014, the top investors held 127 positions in coal. By the end of 2015, those companies shed 26 of those positions.Since the third quarter, the value of SNL Energy’s coal index has decreased 32.8% while the S&P 500 index has climbed 3.1% in the same period.Full article ($): Equity investors shed coal exposure in 2015 while a few boost holdings Institutional Investors Continue to Notch Heavy Losses on Coal Holdings 

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