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Race to Net Zero

Your weekly CogX briefing on green tech and the future of energy

Can AI make air travel cleaner?

Eight Amazon nations convened at the rainforest summit in Brazil, but failed to agree on a joint conservation plan. With illegal mining and deforestation increasing, are we running out of time?

The UK government announced millions in funding to enhance renewable energy subsidies but industry experts cautioned that more finance will be needed to achieve climate goals.

Meanwhile, Google’s AI breakthrough could drastically reduce air travel emissions, while an exciting new breakthrough in low-carbon shipping is set to revolutionise the maritime sector, bringing hydrogen power to marine propulsion technology.

Read on for more on these topics — as well as the latest on unprecedented ocean temperatures, a surge in electric vehicle sales and New Zealand's renewables plan - in the CogX Must Reads.

Top Stories
Latin American countries pledge to end deforestation, but lack delivery plans

Eight Amazon countries converged for a crucial rainforest summit in Brazil, aimed at enhancing regional collaboration to tackle climate change and deforestation. Although shared measures were taken, such as the formation of an alliance against deforestation, collective efforts ultimately failed to reach a joint conservation policy.

UK boosts renewable subsidies amid climate concerns

UK Energy Secretary, Grant Shapps, unveiled a £22 million increase in renewables subsidies. While the majority of the funding will go to established technologies like solar and offshore wind, £2 million will be targeted at emerging technologies such as floating offshore wind.

Climate change
Unprecedented ocean heat threatens earth’s balance

Global sea surface temperatures soared to 20.96°C (67.73°F), shattering all historical records. Scientists caution that this unprecedented warming poses serious risk for marine ecosystems, glacier melting and the overall stability of our planet’s natural systems.

UK’s oil and gas licences invade protected seas

40% of new licences for oil and gas drilling in the North Sea are located within marine protected areas, campaigners warn in an open letter to the UK’s Prime Minister. Experts warn against drilling within these marine protected areas as they are home to hundreds of species of fish and fragile ecosystems.

Green tech
Google AI breakthrough could drastically reduce air travel emissions

Google developed an AI system using satellite imagery and weather data to generate contrail-avoiding flight paths. During 70 test flights flown over six months, the team managed to reduce an impressive 54% of contrails. With air travel producing 1 billion tons of greenhouse emissions, this technology could significantly lower the climate impact of flying.

A wave of change in clean shipping

MV Sea Change, the world’s first commercial ferry solely powered by hydrogen, is set to embark on its maiden voyage in the coming weeks across the San Francisco Bay area. With technology moving towards cleaner shipping, the maritime sector could slowly steer away from fossil fuels.

UK’s new electric vehicle market surges

The UK’s Electric Vehicles (EVs) market experienced a remarkable 90% summer surge in deliveries, with an electric car being registered every minute. According to reports, July’s registrations showcased over 35% of total cars as electric, while hybrid registrations rose by 79%.

New Zealand aims to reach 100% renewable energy

New Zealand has partnered with BlackRock to launch a $1.2 billion fund aimed at boosting investments in wind, solar energy, battery storage, and green hydrogen. The partnership seeks to reach full renewable generation by the end of the decade, with a focus on fostering the growth of the country’s clean-tech sector.

CogX Must Reads

In case you missed it

Check out this special report on the environmental challenges felt in developing countries as companies rush to secure rare minerals:

We'd love to hear your thoughts on this week’s Issue and what you’d like to see more of.

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