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The value of share offerings in fossil fuel producing and related companies dropped by $123 billion in the last decade underperforming a key world equities index by 52 percent, while levels of new shares issued in the sector fell sharply, a Carbon Tracker study published on Wednesday said.
This trend was in marked contrast to activity in clean energy initial public offerings (IPOs) which overtook carbon-heavy flotations worldwide for the first time last year, suggesting investors are shifting finance towards a low-carbon future as the coal, oil, and gas industries have struggled.
Fossil fuel issuance fell by 85 percent from $70 billion to $10 billion in the period analyzed from 2012 to 2020, while renewables raised a record $11 billion from public equity offerings in 2020 alone.
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Henrik Jeppesen, report author and US head of investor outreach, said: “Investors have woken up to the fact that fossil fuel companies are no longer the growth stories they once were. Climate risk is now very much a material one that cannot be ignored and clean energy stocks are rapidly replacing the old order as the choice investment for a transitioning world.”
A Tale of Two Share Issues: How fossil fuel equity offerings are losing investors billions found that over the decade investors have bought almost $640 billion of equity issued by fossil fuel producers, fossil fuel-dependent utilities, pipelines, and service companies.
But their investments have lost roughly 20 percent in value despite one of the longest and strongest equity bull markets on record.
The report analyzed the stock market fortunes of fossil fuel companies and compared them with electric utilities and renewables and cleantech companies as well as the general equity market (the MSCI All Country World Index, or ACWI, is used as a benchmark).
An investor who bought into all fossil fuel and related equity issuances from 2012-2020 would have seen their investment underperform the ACWI by 52 percent.
However, despite equity raised by clean energy companies have grown rapidly, it is still trivial in the context of what has to be generated to finance a global energy transition.
According to the IPCC special report on global warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius, investments into clean energy infrastructure need to be in the order of $3 trillion to $3.5 trillion annually.
Moreover, of the total equity raised by companies on world markets, 10 percent was accounted for by fossil fuel producer and electric utility companies but only one percent in renewables and cleantech in the period analyzed.
Nevertheless, investors in renewable energy have received a good return, according to the study, with the MSCI Global Alternative Energy index outperforming the market (ACWI) by 54 percent and with most of that return coming in 2020 — making it one of the best performing sectors of the decade.
Share issuances raised $56 billion over the period and investors have gained $77 billion in value.
Since 2016, there has been a decline in fossil fuel IPOs, where companies raise money through new share issues, and an increase in sales by existing long-term holders, for example, founders, owners, and governments, that could indicate declining confidence in the future prospects for the sector.
The proportion of equity issuances comprising secondary share sales surged from six percent in 2016 to 58 percent in 2020.
Mark Campanale, founder and executive director, said: “It’s astonishing that exchanges are still listing new fossil fuel companies intent on expanding production or developing new reserves in direct contravention of the Paris temperature goals. But what this shows is that confidence is really beginning to evaporate as incumbents struggle to access historically strong flows of finance.”
The report notes that while oil and gas producers were able to tap equity markets in the market collapse of 2011-14, this does not seem to have been the case in the 2020 price downturn.
From 2018-20 annual equity offerings have been less than half that of 2014-2016. (IANS/KB)
Canadian researchers have discovered an overlooked gene that plays a major role in the development of antibodies, which help the immune system recognize and fight viruses including SARS-CoV-2, bacteria and other causes of infectious disease. The gene -- FAM72A -- facilitates production of high-quality antibodies by enabling the effect of an enzyme called AID (for Activation-Induced Deaminase), the researchers showed.
Immunologists have known for two decades that AID is essential to produce antibodies capable of clearing infections, but the full mechanism of its effect has remained unknown. "Our findings answer the long-standing question of how AID does its work," said Alberto Martin, a professor of immunology at the University of Toronto's Temerty Faculty of Medicine. "FAM72A helps AID to promote mutations in antibody genes that are essential for the development of effective antibodies," he added.
Genetic mutations that lead to lasting changes in DNA occur through a process called mutagenesis. | Pixabay
Genetic mutations that lead to lasting changes in DNA occur through a process called mutagenesis. In the context of antibody development, mutagenesis unfolds largely through the AID-driven mechanisms called somatic hypermutation and class switch recombination -- both of which help antibodies gain the diversity and potency they need to counter a wide range of pathogens.
The results published in the journal Nature will help researchers better understand antibody development broadly, but they also have implications for cancer. Uncontrolled mutagenesis in B cells that produce antibodies is linked to B cell lymphoma, and FAM72A is present at very high levels in other cancers such as gastrointestinal, breast, lung, liver and ovarian cancers.
"Our data show that high levels of FAM72A promote mutations in antibody genes, so increased levels of FAM72A could spur cancer development, progression or drug resistance by increasing mutagenesis,a Martin said. Martin's team is now exploring those possibilities. Intriguingly, unlike other mammals, humans have four gene versions of FAM72A and their roles in cancer and antibody production are still unknown. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: researchers, cancer, mutagenesis, antibody, development, antibodies, canada, COVID
Mahanadi Coalfields Limited (MCL), a subsidiary of Coal India will set up a 50 megawatt (MW) solar power plant in Odisha's Sambalpur at a total cost of Rs 301.92 crore, moving steadily towards its goal to achieve carbon neutrality by 2024. MCL has placed a turnkey order to set-up a 50 MW solar power plant with a Chennai-based firm M/s Hild Energy Ltd, which will establish this green energy project within a timeline of 10 months, the MCL said in a statement on Saturday.
This solar plant would cater to the captive power requirement of MCL. The Central PSU had successfully set-up a 2MW solar power plant in Sambalpur in 2014. The company said it has pledged a target of installing 182 MW of solar power by 2024 in order to become a net zero energy company, aligning itself to use cleaner forms of energy for coal production.
The company said it has pledged a target of installing 182 MW of solar power by 2024. | Photo by Mariana Proença on Unsplash
This 50 MW solar power project will reduce CO2 emission by 91,020 tonnes per annum and carbon offsets of around 24,824 tonnes per annum, claimed the MCL. MCL is the leading production subsidiary of Coal India, having mining operations in Angul, Jharsuguda and Sundargarh districts of Odisha. Having achieved the highest ever capital expenditure of Rs 2,419 crore in the financial year 2020-21, the company has coal production and dispatch targets of 163 million tonnes and 182 million tonnes, respectively.
MCL was the coal mining company to introduce environment-friendly surface miner technology, which contributes over 95 per cent in coal production. As another environment-friendly initiative, the company has successfully introduced vertical rippers for blast-less over-burden removal in Hingula and Kaniha opencast projects. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: solar plant, carbon neutrality, Odisha, Sambalpur, Coal India, subsidiary, Mahanadi Coalfields Limited, solar energy
As the nation celebrated the 114th birth anniversary of his father - renowned poet Harivansh Rai Bachchan - megastar Amitabh Bachchan remembered his dad as he penned a heartfelt note for him. The actor took to his blog where he poured his heart out and also shared an unseen photo with his father. The image in question is from Big B's wedding in 1973, where the two are caught in a sweet moment as they look at each other.
Amitabh Bachchan wrote on his blog,
"My Father , my all .. November 27th his birth in the year 1907 .. Which makes it his 114th Anniversary .. He is in the heavens, with my Mother and they celebrate .. as do we , in thought word and deed .. (sic). But first."
He then posted the picture followed by elaborate paragraphs. The megastar wrote,
"Those rare moments when one would find himself rushing against the winds to prevent the distance between us and to close it down as soon as it can be. The day of my wedding and his expression of fulfilment to not just be in congratulation but instead to be in the face of a belief, a chime, an ultimate season of love and great passion, of the quarries of the fears and conditionings of these deprived gym routines kart ..(sic)". "This could have been unknown for long facilitating years, to give not expected versions and lastly large scale informations of the insides ; but as time passed by, as does now , they explained purposely, the values of education and similarity .. Be in peace and love .. (sic)",
the veteran actor concluded his note. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: Amitabh Bachchan, Harivansh Rai Bachchan, actor, blog, birth anniversary, 114th birthday