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Tuesday, 18 October 2022

TODAY: 50 projects seeking finance at COP27 + What’s low-carbon hydrogen worth?

Good morning, wonderful people. Based on the paucity of news flow this week, it’s looking like more and more of you out there are waiting until COP27 to unveil new projects and partnerships.

THE BIG CLIMATE STORY- There’s no one story stealing the climate show in the region this morning as y’all hold your firepower ahead of COP. That said, there’s some interesting news from the GCC this morning: Abdul Latif Jameel Energy’s FRV is investing in German solar firm Ecoligo; and we’ve got our eye on a sleek solar-powered EV out of Sharjah.

Speaking of COP: Some 50 global projects will be showcased at the summit through the Egypt- and UN-led climate finance roadshow, Egypt’s climate czar Mahmoud Mohieldin said yesterday. Some of those projects will serve as best-practice examples, while others will be looking to drum up finance in Sharm El Sheikh. Mohieldin was speaking at the fifth and final pre-COP regional climate finance roundtable in Geneva, Switzerland. We have more details below.


Egypt’s House of Representatives will debate a bill today that would, in part, regulate EV assembly in the country. The bill would set up a Supreme Council for Vehicle Manufacturing that will set policies for the automotive sector in general, including EVs, and a fund to provide incentives to the local EV assembly industry. The bill will be sent to the floor of the House general assembly after getting its preliminary approval yesterday. If passed, the law will be sent to President Abdel Fattah El Sisi to sign it into law, but will only come into effect once the executive regulations that bring it to life are published.

Need a refresher? We dove into the details of the legislation here.

ALSO TODAY- The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa is holding a webinar on North African food security from 1:00-4:45pm CLT. Topics will include the region’s dependence on cereal imports from global food markets (which have been rocked by the pandemic, war in Ukraine, and trade disruptions) and look at how North African countries will adapt to the global energy shortage. Tap or click here to register.

COUNTDOWN TO COP (19 days to go)-

Some 50 climate and development projects set to be showcased at COP27: A global climate finance roadshow organized by the UN and Egypt in the run-up to COP27 has identified 50 climate and development projects to be showcased during the Sharm El Sheikh conference, COP27 czar Mahmoud Mohieldin said at the roadshow’s fifth and final regional forum held yesterday, according to a statement (pdf). Some 400 projects were reviewed at the forums, which were held in each of the UN’s global regions. Enterprise's Going Green vertical took a look at the roadshow, which aims to bring together public and private stakeholders to drum up investment for national climate projects, a few weeks back.

Another 100 projects are earmarked for further review and possible funding: Another 100 projects will be posted online to discuss their financing and implementation, with many standing to benefit from the USD 130 tn committed by the Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero (GFANZ) in November 2021, Mohieldin added.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El Sisi will launch a water adaptation and resilience initiative at COP27 in coordination with the World Meteorological Organization, the president said in a speech at the opening of Cairo Water Week on Sunday. Egypt will launch the African Center for Water and Adaptation to Climate Change, in efforts to support African work in the field, as part of the initiative.

*** Take our EV survey: Are you an ex-petrolhead shopping around for your first electric vehicle? EV-curious and wondering what all the fuss is about? Or are you not ready to say goodbye to that sweet smell of benzene as you wait at the gas station?

We want to hear from you: We’re taking the pulse on how the region feels about MENA’s EV transition. Take a few minutes to fill out our short survey. We’ll be back with the results in a couple of weeks

THE BIG CLIMATE STORY OUTSIDE THE REGION– There isn’t a single big story dominating the global headlines today. Vying for your attention:

  • The “green revolution” is coming for coal country in the United States (Financial Times);
  • Natural disasters: Flooding has displaced 1.3 mn people and killed 600 in Nigeria, while several thousand people have been evacuated in Washington state in the US as fires rage.

THE NEXT BIG THING corporates will be accused of? That would be “green hushing.” Bloomberg reports that a growing number of western companies are so worried about being accused of greenwashing that they’re keeping their climate goals secret, according to a climate consultancy.

SMART POLICY- Indonesia’s government has told all state-owned companies to switch to EVs within three years, Bloomberg reported yesterday, part of the country’s goal to hit net-zero emissions by 2060. Some 3.5k buses run by state-owned operators will also be switched out for electric vehicles. The government said public firms could rent rather than buy to help allay the upfront costs of the switch. The move will also help slash the fuel subsidy budget, Indonesian news agency Antara quotes a top government official as saying.

WORTH READING- How should low-carbon hydrogen be priced? Most hydrogen currently produced goes to a “captive” market — it’s produced and consumed on site by industrial players, mostly makers of fertilizers and other chemicals. If low-carbon hydrogen is to become a viable large-scale alternative for fossil fuels, it will need to be traded through markets, like any other commodity, writes Ghassan Wakim, zero-carbon fuel production manager at the Clean Air Task Force, in an op-ed published last week. Until those markets are properly established, the usual forces of supply and demand won’t be strong enough to set a price on hydrogen, Wakim argues. In the meantime, global pricing mechanisms will need to be established to set a “fair” value that allows for global trade in the fuel. Wakim lays out several potential pricing regimes that could get hydrogen markets up and running.

WORTH NOTING- Remember the Nord Stream methane leaks? They’re dwarfed by the oil and gas industry’s business-as-usual emissions. The amount of methane released by the Nord Stream gas pipeline leaks earlier this month was equivalent to two days of the oil and gas industry’s usual methane emissions, writes Flavia Sollazzo, senior director of the Environmental Defense Fund Europe’s EU energy transition team. The leak is likely the biggest ever recorded in the oil and gas industry — but the real crisis is its day-to-day emissions of the harmful gas, Sollazzo says. The tech exists to eliminate 75% of these emissions, but legislation forcing the industry to implement it is lacking, she contends.

YOU’RE READING ENTERPRISE CLIMATE, the essential regional publication for senior execs who care about the world’s most important industry. Enterprise Climate covers everything from finance and tech to regulation, products and policy across the Middle East and North Africa. In a nod to the growing geographical ambitions of companies in our corner of the world, we also include an overview of the big trends and data points in nearby countries, including Africa and southern Europe.

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THE DANGER ZONE- A call to action on Iraq’s climate change-driven food shortages on world food day: Worsening droughts caused by rising temperatures and reduced rainfall and water flows have increased Iraq’s soil salinity and harmed its arable land, driving food shortages, the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization and World Food Programme said in a joint statement (pdf) this week. That negatively impacts food production and puts a burden on the state budget from rising food imports, the statement notes on World Food Day.

GO DEEPER- We have explainers here and here on Iraq’s water troubles.


The International Exhibition of Renewable Energies Clean Energies and Sustainable Development will run from 24-26 October in Oran, Algeria. The event will focus on the role of startups in the green transition and the bankability of renewable energy projects.

ADIPEC will run from 31 October to 1 November in Abu Dhabi, UAE. Some 40 ministers from around the world, including eight from MENA, will attend the event. Those include energy and oil ministers from the UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain and Egypt. Discussions will partly focus on the transition toward carbon neutrality, a statement picked up by Zawya details. You can register as an exhibitor here, and as an attendee here.

Check out our full calendar on the web for a comprehensive listing of upcoming news events, national holidays and news triggers.

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