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2023 Year in Review

· 4 min read

Perspectives from Politics, Economics, Science, and Technology

We've witnessed political tension and social unrest worldwide, including the U.S. shooting down a Chinese balloon, massive protests in Israel against judicial reform, coup d'états in Niger and Gabon, and the Israel-Hamas war. These events collectively point to a world grappling with complex challenges. They each have profound implications for international relations, domestic policy, and the global quest for stability and peace.

In the economic realm, notable events unfolded, including the acquisition of Credit Suisse by UBS and the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and First Republic Bank in the United States. Simultaneously, China and Brazil forged an agreement to abandon the use of the U.S. Dollar as an intermediary currency, while an Indian oil refiner commenced payments for Russian oil imports in Chinese Yuan.

In the dynamic landscape of science and technology, India made significant strides by successfully reaching the lunar south pole. The mainstream adoption of generative AI witnessed the inclusion of various key players alongside OpenAI, such as Anthropic, Cohere, Mistral, among others, each securing substantial funding in the order of hundreds of millions. Notably, Nvidia attained a market capitalization of one trillion dollars.

The Climate Change

The most significant long-term crisis we face is climate change. The undeniable reality that 2023 stands as the hottest year on record underscores the gravity of the challenges posed by climate change.

Intensified by the influence of El Niño, the year witnessed a heightened occurrence of acute wildfires and prolonged droughts, which, in turn, were succeeded by severe flooding in various parts of the world. Even more concerning was the revelation that the Antarctic ice sheet reached a critically low level, while the Arctic endured its warmest summer on record. Adding to the gravity of the situation, the global average temperature temporarily surpassed 2 degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial average for the first time in recorded history, signaling a pivotal moment in the ongoing climate crisis.

And it's crucial to acknowledge that emissions from fossil fuels have surged to a new high: 36.8 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide.

Yet amidst the deluge of negative news, glimmers of hope shine through. UN member states have united in agreement on a framework for the High Seas Treaty, aiming to safeguard 30% of the world's oceans by 2030. Additionally, notable strides in climate-related legislation include the EU's approval of a law prohibiting the sale of new combustion car vehicles in the EU from 2035. California has taken substantial steps with the enactment of two pivotal laws: the Climate Corporate Data Accountability Act and the Greenhouse Gases: Climate-Related Financial Risk. Furthermore, the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) went into effect in October, commencing with a transitional phase.

Subsequently, COP28 took place. Despite facing numerous controversies, the summit succeeded in incorporating a significant commitment to "transition away" from fossil fuels. Additionally, a multitude of pledges and initiatives were launched during the summit, underscoring a collective effort towards a more sustainable and environmentally conscious future.

In 2024, optimistically, we anticipate the abatement of El Niño's impact, a potential alleviation for the global economic slowdown. The EU will require CSRD reporting starting 2024, in addition to extending ETS to cover CO2 emissions from all large ships. The US SEC will release its final rule on climate disclosure. Brazil's upcoming launch of a regulated carbon market signifies a positive stride in environmental policies. The momentum from COP28 is anticipated to foster increased investments in renewable energy. Looking ahead, we anticipate the forthcoming COP29 in Azerbaijan, bringing forth more pledges and initiatives in the ongoing pursuit of sustainable practices.

Throughout 2023, HanaLoop experienced growth through collaborations with diverse partners, customers, advisors, and mentors.

Looking ahead to 2024, our commitment stays focused on continual improvement of and dedicated efforts towards proactively contributing to the mitigation of climate change.

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