Last Week's Climate News – 3/13/23
Here's what happened last week
Last week’s news
Clean energy finance
Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) failed last week. In addition to sparking fears of a larger economic crisis, the failure has some worried about the impact on climate tech and clean energy financing. SVB banked more than 60% of community solar projects and many emerging climate tech companies.
In order to avert climate disaster, clean energy financing needs to double from its record levels in 2022. But due to high interest rates and inflation, offshore wind financing plummeted last year.
Oil and gas
The Biden administration moved towards approving the Willow oil project. The project will release an estimated 280 million tons of CO2 and represents a betrayal by the administration after it pledged to not approve drilling projects on federal lands. Update: The Biden administration approved the project minutes before I planned to send this newsletter.
Oil and gas companies are much less worried about Biden’s climate plans than they were a year ago. Last week at CERAWeek, their biggest conference of the year, executives said the administration appears to be “moving towards the middle” on climate.
At the conference, oil and gas executives talked about their plans to double down on fossil fuels. Few talked about their plans to shift to renewables and electrification.