Highlights include Coalition support for a federal government carbon storage Bill, a new WA adaptation strategy, and a Victorian ban on gas for new homes.
Events include a rail decarbonisation conference. Jobs include executive director with the Victorian Energy Upgrades program, head of DCCEEW's Energy Transformation Division, and roles with Origin Energy and Alstom.
ESG Snapshot is a concise weekly update for C-suite executives and sustainability and climate professionals in Australia.
ESG Snapshot is produced by the Business Council of Sustainable Development Australia (BCSDA), which is the local network partner of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development.
News items are listed by jurisdiction. However, they can also be searched by relevant Sustainable Development Goal category. To do this, go to the SDG key at the end of this issue and click on the icon for the SDG that interests you.
BCSDA welcomes enquiries from organisations and companies interested in distributing ESG Snapshot under their own logo to their members, clients or suppliers.
In cumulative terms there has been more climate litigation in Australia than in any other jurisdiction except for the US, according to the UN Environment Programme's new Global Climate Litigation Report: 2023 Status Review.
July will be the hottest month in human history, constituting one of many developments that signal "the era of global warming has ended, the era of global boiling has arrived", UN Secretary-General António Guterres Echoing has warned (see youtube clip below).
The new Permanent Representative of Australia to the UN, James Larsen, has presented his credentials to UN Secretary-General António Guterres today. Larsen was previously a deputy secretary at DCCEEW, and also served as climate coordinator/deputy secretary in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet in 2021.
The Integrity Council for the Voluntary Carbon Market has released its global benchmark for high-integrity carbon credits, which describes the framework it will use to assess whether carbon credits meet its high-integrity Core Carbon Principles (CCPs).
Financial institutions, central banks, regulators and governments have seriously underestimated the economic damage of climate change, concludes a new report from international think-tank Carbon Tracker.
The European Commission has released new guidelines to help member states update and implement national adaptation strategies, plans and policies.
Government and Opposition members of a Senate inquiry into the government's Environment Protection (Sea Dumping) Amendment (Using New Technologies to Fight Climate Change) Bill have recommended that it be passed, with Greens members of the Senate committee dissenting.
Consultation opportunity. The federal government is consulting on a proposed update of Australia's Critical Minerals List, with submissions due by 17 August.
A joint statement from a meeting between Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and NZ Prime Minister Chris Hipkins includes a section on climate that proposes cooperation on several fronts.
State governments must urgently overhaul their approach to land use planning to ensure no more homes are built without regard to flood plain risk, organisations representing planners, builders and insurers said today in a joint statement.
The Business Council for Sustainable Development Australia has released a report and survey results on the post-pandemic business landscape and sustainability trends (webinar below, featuring report team Mora Estafanous and Regina Jobson, interviewed by BCSDA chief executive Andrew Petersen).
Consultation opportunity. The federal government has released a discussion paper on developing a national framework for recycled content traceability. Submissions are due by 31 August.
A Senate committee inquiry into the Nature Repair Market Bill is due to release its report tomorrow (Tuesday).
A Senate committee inquiry into climate-related invasive species is due to report today (Monday).
The Australian Energy Market Operator's Quarterly Energy Dynamics report shows that from April to June wholesale electricity prices in the National Electricity Market averaged $108 per megawatt hour (MWh), 59% lower than the record high quarterly price set in Q2 2022 ($264/MWh), but 31% higher than the March quarter.
Grant opportunity. The federal government is offering grants of between $1 million and $20 million for projects that deliver solutions for hard-to-recycle plastics. Applications must be submitted by 13 November.
Consultation opportunity. DCCEEW is inviting submissions by 11 August on proposed international best practice benchmarks and guidelines for use under the Safeguard Mechanism.
Consultation opportunity. The federal government is seeking comments by 1 September on proposed scheduling decisions for managing three groups of PFAS chemicals that have been widely used in firefighting foams - PFOA, PFOS and PFHxS .
The Green Building Council of Australia and the Property Council have released a report on carbon offsets that advocates a "last but not later" approach.
Climateworks has released a Natural Capital Measurement Catalogue that contains a comprehensive set of natural capital metrics and methods.
Tender opportunity. The Clean Energy Regulator has invited audit companies with suitably qualified auditors to tender to be part of its Greenhouse and Energy Audit Services panel. Tenders must be submitted by 15 August.
Grant opportunity. The federal government has invited applications by 16 August for a share of $8.5 million in grants for research into reducing methane emissions in the resources sector. Grants of between $1 million and $5 million are available.
Consultation opportunity. The ACCC has published draft guidance on environmental and sustainability claims, with comments due by 15 September.
Consultation opportunity. Submissions are due by 29 September to a Senate Economics Standing Committee inquiry into residential electrification.
Consultation opportunity. The federal government is seeking views by 3 August on its planned $2 billion Hydrogen Headstart program, which aims to support the deployment of up to 1GW of electrolyser capacity by 2030.
Grant opportunity. ARENA has invited expressions by 1 November for grants under a $30 million funding initiative to reduce emissions in the aviation sector.
Consultation opportunity. The federal government is seeking views by 18 August on a proposed revamp of the national hydrogen strategy.
Consultation opportunity. The Independent Expert Scientific Committee (IESC) on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mines has released draft updated guidelines on the information that proponents should provide to the Committee. Submissions close on 18 August.
ACCUs last traded on the spot market at $28.75, with spot Human-Induced Regeneration ACCUs trading at $33.00, according to broker Jarden.
The Department of Environment and Science has suggested that a working group of federal, state and territory governments be established to work on the design of a nature repair market framework that aligns with related reforms, such as the Chubb review recommendations and EPBC Act changes.
It makes the suggestion in answers to questions on notice submitted to a Senate committee inquiry into the Nature Repair Market Bill.
Grant opportunity. Farmers and other landholders can now apply for the next round of funding under the state's Carbon Farming Advice Scheme, which provides grants of up to $10,000 to obtain carbon farming advice from approved advisors.
Consultation opportunity. The state government is seeking views on options to better protect the Queensland section of the Lake Eyre Basin, with comments due by 25 August.
Minister for the Environment Penny Sharpe has released the NSW Biodiversity Conservation Trust’s Investing in Private Land Conservation plan, which outlines key investment priorities for private land conservation, and has also released an executive summary.
Nexa Advisory has released a report by Endgame Economics on the the likely impacts of delaying closure of NSW's ageing coal-fired Eraring and Vales Point power stations.
Consultation opportunity. The Department of Planning and Environment is seeking submissions by 11 August to its five-yearly review of the Biodiversity Assessment Method.
Consultation opportunity. Submissions are due by 4 August on an IPART issues paper on NSW's biodiversity credit market.
Award opportunity. Nominations are now being accepted for the 2023 NSW Sustainability Awards. Entries close 8 September.
From 1 January 2024, planning permits for new homes and residential subdivisions won't allow for gas connections, the state government has announced.
Federal climate change minister Chris Bowen has issued an Offshore Electricity Infrastructure Declaration for an area in Bass Strait off Gippsland.
Grant opportunity. Sustainability Victoria is offering grants of up to $100,000 to businesses in Melbourne's western suburbs to help them reduce particulate pollution. Applications close on 30 August. Businesses can either apply individually or as collaborative partnerships.
Grant opportunity. Applications close on 4 September for grants under the Recycling Modernisation Fund's plastics technology stream, which is offering grants of between $1 million and $20 million.
Grant opportunity. Sustainability Victoria is offering circular economy grants of between $50,000 and $250,000, with applications closing on 11 August.
The state government has awarded Abergeldie, BMD & KBR (ABK) the construction contract for the $72 million Dingley recycled water scheme project, a new 42km pipeline that will deliver recycled water to Melbourne's south-east.
Statutory development and consultation opportunity. A draft Water Miscellaneous Amendments (Delegation and Industrial Water Supply) Bill will enable Tasmanian Irrigation to enter into contracts for the supply of water for hydrogen production at sites such as the Bell Bay Green Hydrogen Hub. Submissions are due by 8 August.
Consultation opportunity. Comments are due by 13 August on the state government's green paper on the energy transition.
The state government has released Western Australia's first climate adaptation strategy.
The state government has awarded carbon farming grants totalling $2.15 million to eight farming businesses.
The Eastern Metropolitan Regional Council is proposing a new immobilisation plant to treat Air Pollution Control Residue (APCr) from waste to energy plants, and to construct a dedicated landfill cell for the treated residues.
Consultation opportunity. Submissions are due by 11 August to Parliament's Public Accounts Committee inquiry into how the state government's progress in achieving ESG outcomes is assisting international investment. The committee will report in August next year.
Consultation opportunity. The Territory government is inviting submissions by 4 August on a proposed new mineral royalty scheme.
ANU is offering a climate essentials professional short course on 15 August.
The Monash Sustainable Development Institute is running a two-day course on climate change and business risk, on July 19 and 20 ($2,970).
LRQA is offering training courses on the ISO50001 standard on energy management.