United Renewables




Our bi-weekly newsletter complements the Conversations on Climate Podcast, offering insights and highlights from discussions with leading figures in business, climate science, and academia.

Innovation and profit in the climate age: so you think you’re Jimmy Hendrix?

Raise your hand if you’re ambidextrous. Let me try that again – raise your other hand if you’re ambidextrous! I don’t know many genuinely ambidextrous people. If you’ve ever tried that internet challenge where you brush your teeth with your other hand for a month, you know it’s not easy. At least at first, you’re […]

Burning out and burning up: lessons in sustainable management from Henry Ford’s mad utopia

The way many businesses treat their workers echoes the way we trash the planet. Time to rethink the outdated management approach common to both. Deep in the Amazon rainforest, nearly 200 miles south of the Brazilian city of Santarem, lies abandoned one of the strangest chapters in the history of the American dream. Visitors to […]

Hydrogen – a cool gas or just a lot of hot air?

Ok, so I’m not an engineer or a chemist but I know plenty of both who are very excited about Hydrogen, however channeling my inner economist I’m not sure the so called ‘H2 Revolution’ will come close to living up to all the hype. Inefficient, expensive to compress and move, H2’s relatively low energy density […]

The wobbly stool of ESG: what does governance have to do with climate change anyway?

Environmental, Social, and Governance issues are interconnected – but are still not treated equally. That needs to change. As 2022 comes to a close, we begin to see headlines announcing the ‘word of the year’. I must confess that ‘splooting’ is new to me – clearly, I’ve been lying face-down on the floor wrong all […]

COP 27 in review – the last gasps of a dying process?

Long-awaited success on loss-and-damage cannot distract us from the reality of a system which is no longer fit for purpose Another year, another COP. As the banners come down, the private jets take off for home, and the final headlines fade from the front pages, what are we to make of COP 27? This year, […]

The selfish case for climate reparations

This long-neglected pillar of environmental justice will top the agenda at COP27. The Global North must get real on Loss and Damage – for our own sake. With COP27 just a month away, the cyclical momentum of climate reporting is back in gear. Sadly, if predictably, the news in 2022 is not good. The UN […]

How to blow your mind: Reflections from the first ten episodes of the Conversations on Climate Podcast

Wow – our first ten episodes finished already! In the five months since we began this adventure, Conversations on Climate has been, without doubt, a wonderful experience. I have had the pleasure – and honour – to host discussions with some fantastic individuals, all at the top of their respective fields. Every one has been […]

Bloom and bust – regenerative business lessons from a microalgae start-up

True sustainability pays attention to means, as well as ends. Here’s how Brilliant Planet are demonstrating regenerative design principles in practice. Tell me twelve things about algae. It’s ok – I’ll wait. I’m joking, of course; but also admitting that before I sat down with Riccardo Gubbioli, I don’t think I could have told you […]

Want to make money in renewable energy? It’s all about respect!

Why the secret to green investing is more grounded than you might think? What is a wind farm, really? Don’t worry, I’m not in the midst of an existential crisis. But after meeting Giannis Komitas -renewable energy investor and COO of National Energy Holdings – for an episode of Conversations on Climate, I’m thinking differently […]

This cost-of-living crisis was entirely predictable

Here’s how to future-proof society – and your own firm – for the next crisis. The financial revelations of 2022 were a long time coming – and are here to stay until we change our behaviours. Only properly pricing in the future can save businesses from themselves. What has happened to the UK? Inflation is […]

Big Oil in transition: Four strategies for a dying industry, Part II

From investor-generators to political-integrators, oil firms are gambling on different approaches to decarbonisation. What they all have in common is a question of culture. Last week, I set out a framework for classifying Big Oil firms according to their transition strategy, based on my conversation with industry insider Julio Dal Poz. If you haven’t already […]

Big Oil in transition: Four strategies for a dying industry, Part I

The transformation we are seeing in global energy markets is anything but quick and easy. Here is my framework for understanding how fossil fuel firms are responding – and why. I worry about oil. You might say that, as someone in the renewables world, I should be happy to leave the past behind. After all, […]

Are Renewables Firms are Ignoring Government Relations?

If so, that’s a mistake! From regulation to investment, the clean energy industry needs government on its side. Why leave that to someone else? I love hosting the Conversations on Climate. Every episode has felt like a privilege, as I get to sit down with some of the most thoughtful and impressive people I have […]

Our sustainable future will be no-size-fits-all.

From London to Hong Kong, the right technologies and policies matter, but local conditions matter more. The only constant must be a focus on demand. Anyone who has been to Hong Kong has seen firsthand that it is a truly global city. In fact, looking out over the glittering skyscrapers from Victoria Peak at night, […]

How Decision Making and Judgement affect Climate Change

Is the issue that others ‘don’t care enough’ – or do we communicate our care in unhelpful ways? I care about the climate. That word – care – expresses more than rational disinterest or professional obligation. I feel it. And, like almost anyone who has been in this space a while, I know that this […]

Welcome to the era of big data for Climate

Good intentions are no longer enough It’s time to get real on the road to net zero – and we can’t change what we don’t measure “Life is a journey, not a destination.” This quotation has come to mind a lot in the last year, as we seem finally to have arrived at the age […]