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Corporate climate lobbying in times of corona

Welcome to Carbon Countdown, a podcast by Carbon Market Watch covering all things carbon pricing, climate action and just transition

Episode 2: Corporate climate lobbying in times of corona

Music: Ambient Technology by Joystock –

The Covid-19 debate has moved from the immediate measures to stop the spread of the virus to the economic recovery and longer-term action. Governments are busy putting together massive financial aid packages – and corporate lobbyists have been very active too.

In this episode, our guests Danny Magill, an analyst at InfluenceMap and Sam Van den plans, policy director of Carbon Market Watch discuss corporate climate lobbying amidst the pandemic.

Over the years, Danny has observed influencing on highly political issues being outsourced to industry associations, which are taking up a major role in the corona crisis-related lobbying. According to Danny, this has sometimes led to competing or even contradictory lobbying efforts within industries. This was the case for example when different car manufactures came out with opposing positions on CO2 standards for cars leading to the European car industry lobby ACEA seemingly not being able to take a clear position on the topic. But Danny also underlines that there is a lot of “positive lobbying”, involving, for example, renewable energy companies, and a real conversation around what this recovery should look like from climate perspective.

Sam talks about the EU carbon market developments since the beginning of the lockdown as well as industry efforts to weaken or delay European and global climate initiatives. Examples include BusinessEurope calling to delay the implementation of key pieces of the EU Green Deal and airlines pushing for rule changes in the global aviation carbon market. Together with Transport & Environment and Greenpeace, Carbon Market Watch has also compiled an “Airline bailout tracker” to track and scrutinise bailout talks between European governments and airlines and to advocate for environmental conditions in these agreements.


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