HSBC warns clients against fossil fuel investment, 1st London university divests, Prince Charles divests, US pro-carbon-fuel Right seeks to convert Pope: Week 17, 2015.

Price Charles shuns fossil fuel investments. So too does Richard Branson. So an FT survey of the rising tide of divestment shows. The National Trust and CoE are reviewing.
Number Ten lets it be known that it would oppose any foreign takeover of BP. It thinks the oil giant should stay British.
“Like shale oil, solar power is shaking up global energy”: Reuters. “Solar power is set to become profitable in Japan as early as this quarter, according to the Japan RE Foundation.”
Conservative US thinktank seeks to change Pope Francis’s mind on climate change. The Heartland Institute is trying to head off the Pope’s forthcoming encyclical.
World’s plants and soils to switch from carbon sink to source by 2100. So a study by the scientists from US National Centre for Atmospheric Research and other institutions concludes.
SOAS becomes first London university to divest from fossil fuels. It will pull out of oil and gas (it holds no coal) withion 3 years.
Renewables are pushing gas and coal out of markets in EU: UBS. A study shows 70GW shut down in the last five years, with the pace accelerating.
1,000 prospective MPs pledge to oppose fracking in next parliament. This is >20% of all Labour & Lib-Dem candidates prepared to defy the party line. (Only 3 Tories).
A half-million barrel backlog of shut-in production has built up in US shale. Bloomberg analysis shows this “fracklog” could be released by end 2016.
Fracking is “perhaps the most important innovation of the 21st century”. So says Ed Crooks in the FT, in a review of US shale.
HSBC threatens to leave UK for Hong Kong. Meanwhile, the bank is facing criminal investigation for tax fraud in France, and is financing even more coal than in 2010.
BP renewable energy archive still closed despite promise at AGM to open to public. HQ spokesman: no material for the last 40 years is made available to the public.
A guide for companies on preparing for climate change and low fuel prices. Carbon Tracker’s latest report, “Blueprint”, takes aim at the risk of a business as usual approach.
RWE will explore a split of its businesses like E.ON if the utility sector’s crisis intensifies. The company has lost nearly €40bn in market value since 2007.
Renewables account for 75% of new US generating capacity in Q1 2015. FERC says 1.2 GW in all (214 MW solar), 300 MW of gas. RE half all new capacity in 2014, 16.9% total US electricity.
Oil and gas drilling triggers man-made earthquakes in eight states, USGS finds. Waste water injection process is activating long-dormant faults.
Will New Dominion survive the seismicity its activities have induced? Bloomberg considers the extraordinary record of the underground re-injection specialist oil company.
US oil production fell 135,000 barrels per day in January. 37,000 of that was in the Bakken, so EIA data show. Art Berman says the EIA showcases all increases, but is silent about decreases.
Hedge funds place big bets on oil price recovery. Record number of futures and options contracts placed.
Scientists” Earth Day statement: 75% of fossil fuel reserves must stay in the ground. The window to stay below 2 degrees is closing, yet the ceiling is frustratingly achievable.
“The US shale industry has failed to crack as expected.” Ambrose-Evans-Pritchard reverses early views in the Telegraph. US could now have greater staying power than OPEC, he suggests.
“Half of US fracking companies will be dead or sold this year.” So an exec of Weatherford International, 5th largest, tells Bloomberg of the current crop of 41 fracking companies.
EU hits Gazprom with an anti-trust charge. The state-controlled Russian gas giant has been over-charging customers in eastern Europe, Brussels says. The fine could total €10bn.
85% of Chinese electricity and 60% of energy could be renewable by 2050. So says a Chinese government report. Provided wind, solar and bioenergy are rolled out fast.
First zero net energy community opens in California. 20 homes by Meritage Homes at Fontana. All new residential construction in the state must be ZNE by 2020, commercial by 2030.
Solarcity launches a first-of-kind $1bn solar and storage fund. For commercial and industrial roofs, backed by Credit Suisse, it will fund 300 MW in next 2 years.
“HSBC Warns Clients of Fossil Fuel Investment Risks”: Newsweek. “Analysts warn of the growing likelihood that fossil fuel companies may become ‘economically non-viable’.
Google almost bought Tesla in May 2013. Musk was running out of money, and went to Larry Page, who shook hands on a rescue deal.
Australia’s climate policy challenged by US, China and Brazil at the UN. They doubt even its inadequate target of 5% cut from 2000 levels by 2020 can be reached on policies described.
US shale oil cannot turn off and on like Saudi as a swing producer. The response will be “jagged”, and “sticky”, analysts say.
“Renewables ride wave of success as prices fall and spending jumps”: FT. Global investment was up 17% on 2013 to $270bn. But RE minus hydro is still only 9% of global power.