Billionaires Beating the Government in Race to Net Zero 

Andrew Forrest, Mukesh Ambani, and Larry Fink walk into a bar — “looks like it’s coke zero all round,” says the bartender. The richest man in India (Ambani) has set a goal of net-zero emissions by 2035 for his company. Australia’s Andrew Forrest has pledged net-zero emissions in phases, mostly by 2030 (scope 1 & 2) and but then the rest by 2040 (scope 3). BlackRock, meanwhile, is seeing massive capital flow into the renewable energy sector.

The Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net-Zero is now “collectively holding assets under management of a staggering US$90 trillion to invest in alignment with a 1.5°C trajectory — and one might think that billionaires and the financial industry are acting ahead of governments to deliver on global solutions to the climate crisis at the scale and speed needed,” IEEFA writes.

On the weekend, Reliance Industries (Ambani) announced the “acquisition of REC Solar, a global scale solar module manufacturing pioneer founded in Norway. This immediately gives Reliance Industries the management capacity necessary to underpin one of four proposed gigafactories at its Dhirubhai Ambani Green Energy Giga Complex on 5,000 acres in Jamnagar, Gujarat, with a near term target of 9 gigawatts (GW) of annual module manufacturing capacity globally. […]

“Meanwhile in Australia, Andrew Forrest’s Fortescue Future Industries (FFI) has announced numerous (as yet non-binding) memorandums of understanding (MoUs) from around the globe as part of its world-leading investment of US$400-600m in 2021/22 alone in research, development and deployment of breakthrough hydrogen technologies spanning green ammonia for shipping, hydrogen fuel buses, and green iron to accelerate decarbonisation of the global steel industry.”

Andrew Forrest, Twiggy, has been in the news a lot this weekend, holding hands with a lot of politicians as he announces a massive electrolyser manufacturing facility on land near one of Queensland’s major coal exporting hubs (Gladstone). When operational, this facility is expected to double green hydrogen production capacity across the globe. 

Billionaires like Ambani and Forrest are leading the way, supported by global financial institutions looking to invest in a socially acceptable green energy revolution. They are not waiting for political leadership. Just as well. 

Sources: IEEFA & ABC.net.au


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