Top stories

1) $140bn for climate action, profit drop for BP and lowest oil price for four months

A dozen leading US corporations have pledged a whopping $140bn to combat climate change – that means banks like Goldman Sachs and the Bank of America committing to financing renewable energy plants and tech companies like Google and Microsoft committing to 100% green energy. Walmart and the like are looking at their supply chains.

The news comes as BP misses its second-quarter profit forecasts due to the charges levied on them for Deepwater Horizon. Falling oil prices are also contributing to the$4.2bn loss in the first half of 2015. investors in oil stocks will be looking to dividends, suggests the head of equities at Hargreaves Landsdowne in thisBloomberg business video.

Elsewhere in oil, prices have slid to their lowest level in four months. Andrew Critchlow in the Telegraph reviews the status of Europe’s four biggest oil companiesas cost cuts take hold.

Elsewhere in energy business news, renewable energy developer Pacific Hydro’s $1.5bn sale has drawn interest from AES and Statkraft.

2) Running on sun: Hillary’s pledges, SunPower, Pakistan and Kenya solar solutions

As Hillary Clinton released her solar surge plan making her best friends with the industry, commentators note she has been unwilling to comment on her position on the much-reviled (by environmentalists) Keystone XL.

Meanwhile SunPower Corp, the second-biggest US solar manufacturer, bought 1.5GW of projects under development across 11 US states from Australian Infigen.

Across the world, solar solutions are providing light for rural Africans in Kenya (seen in this Bloomberg Business video on solar lighting systems provider M-Kopa). Solar lanterns are changing lives in rural Pakistan, too.

3) Climate survey, big city flood risks

Robert McSweeney writes up the latest Nature climate survey in Carbon Brief, reporting that a third of the world’s adults have never heard of climate change – rising to two-thirds in South Africa, Bangladesh and Nigeria. Oliver Milman in the Guardian leads with the concern (or not) of the wealthiest about the climate – and that in every South American country (and in Mexico, Tanzania and Morocco) concern is over 90%.

Bloomberg’s Alex Nussbaum reports scientists’ concerns that the chance of flooding in New York has more than doubled in the past 80 years – also published in Nature Climate Change.

Carbon Brief again has a guest post from Dr Wahl and Dr Jain of the University of Maine on the same study – which details exactly how flooding potentially threatens US coastal areas which hold 40% of the population.

4) UK green cuts sending country back to the dark ages, cost £29bn and 175,000 jobs

The head of waste and water firm Veolia has slammed UK green energy cuts for risking sending the country back to the “dark ages” of relying on fossil fuels. The companies own research undertook with Imperial College London suggests aresource efficient economy would provide £26bn to the UK and provide 175,000 jobs.

The comments come as the UK’s Department for Energy and Climate Change report“worryingly low” solar deployment on commercial rooftops.

Meanwhile the sale of solar panels in the Netherlands has skyrocketed by between 70 and 100 percent in the first half of 2015 compared to the same period last year.

5) China financial crash and coal impact

China is going through something of a financial crisis, but no one really knows what the government will do – writes Samuel Oakford in Vice News. Energy companies China Shenhua Energy and PetroChina have fallen sharply – but Shenhua (China’s biggest coal producer) is planning a $1bn wind farm offering in Hong Kong.

Australia worries about China’s appetite for more imported coal, but luckily tourism has just pipped coal to be Australia’s biggest business.

In other news:

Nuclear: French state faces 5bn euro bill to rescue struggling Areva

Coal: Indian company that bought Rio Tinto out in Mozambique eyes expansion

Margaret Atwood: Mega multimedia essay “It’s not Climate Change – it’s Everything Change”