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Threat to banks: Banks have a big problem: they have to get out of activities that bring them a lot of money. Especially a business sector with a high share of financing of greenhouse gas producing companies is affected. Almost all major European banks have committed themselves to implementing the requirements of the Paris Agreement and reducing carbon emissions to net zero by 2050 at the latest. Institutions would probably have to divest portfolios or withdraw from certain business areas. Overall, this will also further increase the pressure to merge.

290 gigawatts more – another new record for renewable energies in 2021

This year, renewable energy plants with a capacity of 290 gigawatts will be installed worldwide, more than ever before in a single year. This was determined by the International Energy Agency, which at the same time assumes that the growth rate will continue to increase. By 2026, the global capacity of photovoltaic plants, wind farms and other renewable energy plants will increase to 4800 gigawatts, over 60 percent more than in 2020.

WWF demands climate aid for poor countries: Because so much CO2 has already been emitted in this country, Germany should in future help poorer countries to emit fewer exhaust gases. This is what the WWF is demanding and would like the future finance minister to open the coffers for this purpose. In the view of the environmental organisation WWF, Germany must support emerging and developing countries with billions of euros annually to build climate-neutral infrastructure.

Drought risk in the northern hemisphere on the rise: Man-made climate change and the resulting changes in the global water cycle will lead to a significant increase in the frequency of droughts in the northern hemisphere in the coming decades.

Australia opposes UNESCO: The world’s largest coral reef has lost more than half of its corals in just over two decades, and the world’s largest reef is in bad shape, the Australian government admits in an internal report. The reason for this is man-made climate change and the associated warming of the oceans. Now, however, the Australian government wants to prevent A the 2,300-kilometre-long reef area from being classified as endangered. This would put it on the UNESCO Red List of threatened world heritage sites. Canberra fears a loss of face.

Coalition agreement pro solar: The coalition agreement can be a turning point for solar energy: Such expansion targets have not been seen for a long time. However, they must be implemented quickly. Because if politicians do not act fast enough, there is a risk of a solar crisis in the end, at least that is the fear of Wolfgang Gründiger , who is Chief Evangelist at the Berlin solar start-up Enpal.

New concepts for the city centres: Closed shops, desolate pedestrian zones: The inner cities are suffering particularly from the Corona restrictions. But the pandemic is only a catalyst, urban planners state, the problems are much more structural in nature. The goal is inner cities where people can live, learn, work and shop again in equal measure.


Wohin wollen wir? – Grundriss einer guten Gesellschaft

What does a good future look like for all of us? Where do we want to go as individuals, where do we want to go as a society? And how do we get there?
The coronavirus, climate change – our everyday life is currently marked by crises. Crises shake society, but at the same time they encourage us to question the life we have led so far. So every crisis is an opportunity and a chance for reorientation.
But which course do we want to take? What constitutes a „good life“ anyway? In order to answer these questions for society as a whole, the interests of all those involved must be taken into account – those of humans, but also those of non-human living beings. Michael Rosenthal takes up numerous scientific findings and brings them together to form a whole. In the process, a picture emerges that conveys an idea of what constitutes a good society. It invites us to set out on the path towards a good life that takes account of fellow human beings and nature.

Climate targets: Photovoltaics could fill gaps.
Awarded: Russian environmentalist Vladimir Slivyak wins alternative Nobel Prize.
Siemens: Wants to enforce more sustainability in its supply chains and significantly reduce CO2 emissions.
USA: 130 kilograms of plastic waste per capita, the United States is the biggest plastic waste producer.
Insulation industry: Building ministers move away from one-sided focus on building insulation.
Germans: Know nothing about EU environmental policy.
Top managers: Support the plans of the traffic light coalition for the energy turnaround.
RWE: Builds Denmark’s largest offshore wind farm.
Coal phase-out: Saxony’s Minister President spurs unions to protests.

The seventeeen goalsmagazine tells inspiring stories about how people move the world and shows how everyone can make a contribution to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

Making Europe wild again – The valuable work of rewilding and renaturation: The Rewilding Europe initiative wants to dare more wilderness again: more bears, bison, beavers, wetlands. For an ecological balance and biodiversity that was once taken for granted. Because nature needs it – and so do humans.


Populists are agitating against the energy transition. But the traffic lights can make the project of the century a success and win many people over to it. In order for the complete transformation of the energy system to be a success, citizens in particular must be much better involved in the implementation, says Harald Uphoff, Managing Director of the „100 percent renewable“ foundation. This requires many more professional mediators as well as economic benefits from the energy plants for the local people. Because it is also clear that populists, especially from the right, are focusing on the energy transition. AfD politicians have massively sharpened the tone, says Uphoff: „They turn opponents into enemies“.


Mobility and Corona: In November 2021, below pre-crisis levels for the first time since June 2021. Fourth Corona wave, 2G rule and increased home office: In November 2021, for the first time since June 2021, people in Germany were on the move less than before the Corona pandemic. Mobility nationwide was two per cent below the pre-crisis level in November 2019, following similar levels of movement in October 2021 as in the reference month of October 2019.

Shortage of skilled workers: puts the brakes on climate protection, digitalisation and e-mobility.

90 percent want employers to get involved in e-mobility: The trend towards e-cars also has an impact on companies, as a recent survey* by E.ON shows. „90 percent of German driving licence holders are in favour of employers who provide company cars also offering their employees electric vehicles and corresponding charging options,“ summarises Christoph Ebert, who is responsible for B2B e-mobility solutions at E.ON.

AI in mobility: Artificial intelligence will make mobility better, safer and more comfortable. But these systems need an ethical and moral framework.

E-vehicles are catching up with combustion engines in terms of price: Electric vehicles will reach the same price level as petrol cars in the next few years, saving thousands of euros over their lifetime: Cheaper batteries drive adoption of electric vehicles, BlackRock analysts report.

Mobility platform: Provider „Free Now“ is growing in Berlin and can significantly increase journeys. The goal is to unite all means of transport in one platform.

PrioBike: The PrioBike app is designed to make cycling more attractive. Cyclists can see how fast or slow they have to ride in order to use a „green wave“. So far, this is a pilot project in Hamburg.


Blue hydrogen can protect the climate: An international group of researchers led by the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI and Heriot-Watt University have extensively analysed the climate effects of so-called blue hydrogen. It is extracted from natural gas, with the resulting CO2 emissions being captured and stored. The study shows that blue hydrogen can play a positive role in the energy transition under certain conditions.

What paper has to do with hydrogen production: The energy supply is facing a dramatic turnaround. Green hydrogen is seen as a great source of hope. A research project that effectively reduces the costs of the water electrolysis required to produce this hydrogen using paper-based electricity distributors was awarded the Otto von Guericke Prize yesterday, 1 December 2021. The AiF Federation of Industrial Research Associations „Otto von Guericke“ e.V. has been awarding the €10,000 prize since 1997 to scientists for special innovative achievements in the field of precompetitive industrial collaborative research (IGF).

Green hydrogen: Thanks to lavish subsidies, plants for the production of green hydrogen are now really being built. Share prices should benefit.
Decarbonisation: Tipping point analysis: When will green hydrogen become economically viable?Green hydrogen is a crucial pivotal point in the energy transition. But only if its potential is optimally exploited in those areas where its economic use seems possible. To this end, the authors have calculated the tipping points for various sectors and areas.

Heide/Holstein: In Dithmarschen, more electricity is often produced than is needed. The surplus energy can be stored as hydrogen.

Gas boilers – EU wants at least 20% hydrogen capability: New gas boilers launched in Europe could soon have to run on „at least 20% hydrogen“ under new rules planned at EU level. The new standard for domestic boilers is part of the new „Ecodesign and energy labelling requirements for space heaters and water heaters“ currently being discussed by representatives of the 27 EU Member States.

Ports as hydrogen hubs: The German government is laying the foundation for an entire hydrogen economy. In order to make the technology around the green energy carrier competitive in industry in the long term, it is therefore funding selected collaborative projects within the framework of an EU-wide programme with a total of eight billion euros. The main aim is to strengthen the domestic production of hydrogen. The ports could become an important centre for hydrogen production.

Green ammonia needs green hydrogen: Hydrogen is a versatile energy carrier, but transporting large quantities over long distances is still a challenge. One solution could be green ammonia, because NH3 is easier to handle than H2 when it comes to transport and storage.  Ammonia has some positive properties that could make it an important energy carrier. These concern not only chemistry and physics, but also infrastructure: no other chemical is produced in such large quantities worldwide as ammonia. The production and transport technology therefore does not have to be laboriously scaled up, but is already established in large corporations.

Two-billion-euro Clean Hydrogen Partnership signals shift away from hydrogen cars: Fuel cell-powered cars and trucks once seemed to be the future of environmentally friendly mobility. But with electric cars now set to dominate the market, the EU’s joint hydrogen venture – which involves industry, public authorities, civil society and other stakeholders – was renamed this week to signal a shift in priorities towards the production of low-cost green hydrogen through electrolysis. The focus of the EU hydrogen strategy is now no longer on transport, but on heavy industries such as steel production and chemicals, which cannot be fully electrified and require liquid and gaseous fuels as feedstocks or for high-temperature heat. This change in priorities is reflected in the third version of the European Commission’s Joint Hydrogen Undertaking, presented on Monday (29 November).


For St. Nicholas and Christmas, we should send a signal for fair chocolate – because only a fair St. Nicholas is a good St. Nicholas“,

Gerd Müller, Executive Minister for Economic Cooperation, for the second time the Advent season is ­now falling into ­the pandemic. Now more than ever, we should pay attention to fairness, also towards the people who produce ­our products.  1.5 million children in the cocoa-growing regions of ­Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire have to help out ­because their parents‘ wages are not enough for the family to survive. Corona has dramatically worsened the situation: studies show an increase in child labour by one fifth during the 2020 lockdown in the cocoa-growing ­areas of Côte d’Ivoire­. According to Müller, one fifth of the chocolate in Germany is now fair trade certified. That is good, but the conditions on the ground show that there is still a lot more to be done. Without a complete change in the economic system ­and consumer behaviour, the ­fight against child labour will not be ­won. We must finally understand that part of our prosperity is also based on exploitation.

One has to recall this astonishing story in order to grasp the full implications of the coalition agreement that has just been concluded between the parties of the „traffic light“ coalition for the BMU. What can be seen is nothing less than the organisational deconstruction and political devaluation of a ministry whose foundation can be described as the only institutional success of the ecology movement in Germany.

Michael Schroeren, head of the press department of the Federal Ministry for the Environment from 1998 to 2009 and from 2014 to 2017, that this was happening not only with the connivance but at the active instigation of a party that also had its roots in the environmental movement, would be material for a tragicomedy on Netflix: „Darling, I shrunk the BMU!“, starring: Robert Habeck and Annalena Baerbock. The BMU would be left behind as a torso: a department bordering on immobility and insignificance, which hardly anyone would still be interested in and whose continued existence would therefore be a matter of serious concern. According to all political experience, there is not much to suggest that the dismantling of the BMU that has now begun will ever be reversed. Rather, it is to be feared that it will be dealt with even more unrestrainedly in future government formations, should the BMU end up on the scrap heap as „environmental junk“.


China-Africa Summit: The eighth conference of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) began a week ago Sunday in Dakar, the capital of Senegal. For the first time, the two-day summit took place as a ministerial conference at the level of foreign, trade and economic ministers. Chinese President Xi Jinping opened the conference in a digital address and announced, among other things, that he would support Africa in the fight against Covid-19 with 1 billion vaccine doses, 600,000 of which would be provided free of charge. He also promised far-reaching economic support packages for member states, although the pledges made at the summit totalled US$40 billion, well below the US$60 billion pledged at the last FOCAC in 2018.

South Africa and the Omikron dilemma: South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa strongly criticised the international community earlier this week for the travel restrictions imposed on his country and many other southern African states in connection with the discovery of the new Covid 19 variant Omikron. South Africa, he said, was being punished for its transparent communication in dealing with the new virus variant. Ramaphosa received support from the World Health Organisation (WHO), the African Union and the United Nations, whose representatives expressed similar sentiments and described the reactions of other countries as unjustified. Especially at the beginning of the peak travel season, the travel restrictions mean a great economic loss for South Africa, numerous livelihoods are at stake.

Ethiopia: Government troops have apparently recaptured world heritage site. Lalibela and other towns are back under Addis Ababa’s control, according to government sources.

Burkina Faso: In the stranglehold of terror. After protests, President Kaboré has announced an improved fight against terrorism. Many people feel that these are empty words and demand the resignation of the head of state.

No flight bans in Kenya: Kenya will not ban international flights because of the Covid variant, says PS, Direct flights from the affected countries have been banned for the UK.
This came after at least 59 cases of the new strain B.1.1.529, which is feared to be more transmissible and evade vaccines, were detected in South Africa
and Botswana as well as Hong Kong.

Congo: Judicial investigation opened against Kabila clan. Africa’s biggest data leak reveals how ex-president Joseph Kabila’s closest circle enriched themselves from the state treasury over the years. The government wants to investigate the case.
Lesotho: Thomas Thabane, ex-Prime Minister of Lesotho, charged with murder of his wife.
Tanzania: Mothers are also allowed to learn, Tanzania overturns ban on pregnant women attending school. President Samia Suluhu Hassan thus also complies with a demand of the World Bank.
Hello Tractor: In Kenya, agricultural equipment is unaffordable for many small farmers. They can rent the machines via a smartphone app – according to the principle of the taxi service „Uber“.


Forest fires and smoke shorten lives: Smoke from forest fires is responsible for tens to hundreds of thousands of premature deaths.Scientists at Stanford University, like a worldwide scientific network by the way, have systematically studied the health effects of smoke exposure. Among other things, they are looking into the question of who is most exposed to the pollutants and how people and their health can be protected from the smoke. Socio-economic status also plays a role here, as people in poorer areas were more likely to work outdoors, for example in agriculture or construction. They are also more likely to have other diseases and less access to adequate health care or air filtration systems. Due to these factors, forest fires become an even greater burden for low-income regions.

Freshwater just as stressed as the oceans: The oceans are receiving a lot of attention due to their sheer size, temperature increases and acidity levels are rising. The situation of freshwaters looks just as bad: In lakes, rivers and wetlands, biodiversity is declining at an excessive rate, and the loss of species is even faster in freshwater than in the oceans or on land. In the scientific journal „Ecology Letters“, researchers from 38 countries draw attention to the situation. They call for more efforts to protect the areas as well as more attention and money for the relevant research.

Threatened Wadden Sea: The World Conservation Union warns that climate change poses a major threat to the Wadden Sea. The survival of this unique habitat depends on the implementation of conservation and protection measures. Last week, 180 scientists from the riparian states discussed the effects of climate change on biodiversity, for example, at the „International Scientific Wadden Sea Symposium“. Millions of birds visit the Wadden Sea every year on their migration from the breeding grounds in the Arctic to their winter quarters in Africa. They always pass by when they find enough food. This synchronisation can be disrupted by climate change, according to the responsible national park administration.

Russia: Russia is also struggling with the consequences of climate change, the country is warming up faster than others. It wants to become climate-neutral by 2060.
Wolves: Spreading further and further in Germany.
Water shortage in. Europe: Climate change, agriculture and industry threaten Europe’s freshwater supplies.


Was that something with the DE-Mail? The Federal Audit Office is taking the Federal Ministry of the Interior (BMI) to court over the De-Mail fiasco. The ministry failed to establish the communication service „as an electronic counterpart to letter post in the federal administration“, the Federal Audit Office complains in its comments on the budgetary and economic management of the federal government for 2021 published on Tuesday. Authorities, citizens as well as companies hardly used De-Mail at all for the digital exchange of messages.

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