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iCS’ Newsletter: December/2017
Inside iCS
iCS does an internal evaluation iCS evaluation efforts included workshops with staff, interviews with board members and some funders, consultation with selected partners, and a survey with all grantees
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COP 23
iCS actively participates in COP23, alongside its grantees Organizations such as IDESAM, Observatório do Clima and CEBDS held events and press conferences to launch studies and generate discussions on low-carbon economy
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News coverage of COP 23 is boosted with support from iCS In addition to Daniela Chiaretti, from Valor, the journalists selected for the trip had won the first Climate Journalism report award, which targeted communication students throughout Brazil
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Climate Change Policy and Economics
Third edition of What Design Can Do is held in São Paulo with a focus on climate Ana Toni participated as a jury member and speaker on panels focused on how design can create solutions for a sustainable future, and Gustavo Pinheiro talked about technology and urban mobility
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Climate Ventures - Laboratório de Inovação Climática holds a soft opening in Rio Held by Aoka Labs, in partnership with Observatório do Clima and iCS, the laboratory aims to provide a space for innovation and the building of low-carbon development solutions
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The Colaboramerica Festival goes back to Rio de Janeiro and highlights climate changes as its main theme Gustavo Pinheiro, from iCS, participated as a panel speaker on the opportunities of a low-carbon economy, and Ana Toni took part in the round table on circular economy
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Power
With the growth of its economy, Brazil uses more and more energy The movement goes against the global average, where a larger production of goods and services is not linked to an increase in energy generation
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Urban Mobility
Infographic shows the relationship between cyclists and pedestrians and the need for cities that are more bicycle- and pedestrian-friendly A live broadcast on Youtube, organized by Bike Anjo, Cidades Ativa, Como Anda e Corrida Amiga debated the theme and presented results within the #BicicletaNosPlanos campaign
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Britain’s The Guardian accompanies a resident from the outskirts of São Paulo to experience the problems of public transportation
Gabriela Vuolo, from Cidade dos Sonhos, explained the reality of the bus system in the largest Brazilian metropolis
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Bike Anjo turns 7, with activities all over the country
The initiative teaches people to ride a bicycle safely and is now present in 28 countries and more than 619 cities
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What’s happening in Brazil
New law sanctioned by the government of Rio de Janeiro exempts donations to civil-society organizations from the payment of ITCMD While great progress has been made, there is still much to be done, especially in relation to other states that do not yet offer a tax exemption
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Biofuel and oil subsidy bills passed in the House of Representatives and now await a vote by the Senate RenovaBio is presented as a means to meet Brazil's commitments under the Paris Climate Agreement, but the "Trillion Reais Provisional Measure" goes in the opposite direction, subsidizing the oil industry
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Doações Aprovadas em Novembro
ISA – Instituto Socioambiental | R$ 245.000 To promote public accountability and enforcement of social, environmental and climatic rights in Brazil
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Sitawi | R$ 200.000
To foster private investment in low carbon development by establishing a seed demonstrative fund.
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Diálogo Chino | R$ 45.000
To produce articles with the goal to develop and exchange knowledge of the shared climate and energy challenges faced by emerging countries China and Brazil
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Inside iCS
iCS does an internal evaluation

Throughout 2017, iCS sought to intensify the efforts to evaluate its work. In particular, in recent weeks, the Institute has embarked on an evaluation effort led by consultants Martina Otero and Emilia Bretan, involving the iCS team, its board, grantees, some funders and other partners. This effort included the evaluation of results of iCS' work using the Outcome Harvesting methodology and an anonymous online survey with grantees about their relationship with iCS, as well as their perceptions about the Institute. The initial results of this evaluation effort will be discussed with the iCS board in December and will serve as basis for the 2018 planning.

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COP 23
iCS actively participates in COP23, alongside its grantees

Ana Toni, executive director, and Gustavo Pinheiro, Coordinator of the Climate Change Policy and Economics Portfolio, represented iCS during COP23, in Bonn, Germany. In addition to monitoring the negotiations, the two participated in a range of side events, including those organized by grantees, funders and other Clima e Sociedade partners.

One of the side events was the launch of the study carried out by IDESAM with the support of iCS, entitled “Hydroelectric and CDM projects in the Brazilian Amazon: deceiving investors and cheating the atmosphere?”. The study, which was co-authored by IDESAM, the Environmental Securities Exchange of Rio de Janeiro (BVRio), the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), Fundação Amazonas Sustentável (FAS), Instituto Centro de Vida (ICV) and Instituto Socioambiental (ISA), highlights three controversial plans to build hydroelectric power plants in the Amazon: Santo Antônio and Jirau, both in Rondônia, and Teles Pires, in Mato Grosso. It defends that a project should only be classified as a Clean Development Mechanism if it generates additional, measurable and real emission reductions, in addition to the fact that it must rely on CDM carbon credits revenues to be viable - which is not the case of the hydroelectric plants that have been examined.

Other iCS grantees also participated in the COP as speakers or organizers, such as Observatório do Clima and the Brazilian Business Council for Sustainable Development (“Conselho Empresarial Brasileiro para o Desenvolvimento Sustentável” - CEBDS)

News coverage of COP 23 is boosted with support from iCS

Daniela Chiaretti, a special reporter for Valor, carried out a thorough coverage for the publication’s printed and web versions. In her articles and notes, the journalist wrote about speeches given by international political figures, such as Chancellor Angela Merkel, covered the news from the Brazilian delegation and the Brazilian proposal to host COP25 - whose final decision was postponed. iCS supported Daniela's trip to Bonn.

In addition, Climate Journalism, an iCS grantee, sent, in partnership with Clima e Sociedade, three young Brazilian journalists to cover COP23. Heloisa Aun and Alessandra Petraglia, from Catraca Livre, and Lucas Veloso, from Agência Mural, attended the Conference between November 10 and 16. The articles produced by them addressed the differences between the German bus systems and those found on the peripheries of São Paulo, investment in bicycles and the difficulties faced by island countries as a result of the effects of climate change, among others. Check out the reports on Catraca and in the Mural na Folha blog.

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Climate Change Policy and Economics
Third edition of What Design Can Do is held in São Paulo with a focus on climate

On November 22 and 23, São Paulo hosted the third edition of What Design Can Do, which addressed matters such as how design can create solutions for a sustainable future. Supported by iCS, the event brought together designers, business people, environmentalists and the public in general to discuss innovative strategies and initiatives to change the way we live, eat and produce energy. Ana Toni participated as a jury member and took part in the panels during the two days of debates.

Gustavo Pinheiro, in turn, led the "Design and Technology for Resilient Cities" session, which dealt with the challenge of not only decarbonizing the urban mobility system, but ensuring quality and increasing people's access to the opportunities that an urban space offers. In his speech, Gustavo explained how design and the use of technology can contribute to a reduction in the current public transportation deficit, with simple and inspiring solutions.

Climate Ventures - Laboratório de Inovação Climática holds a soft opening in Rio

Nex, a co-working space in Rio de Janeiro, hosted the soft opening of Climate Ventures - Laboratório de Inovação Climática. Supported by Aoka Labs in partnership with Observatório do Clima and iCS, this is a space for innovations that brings together companies, entrepreneurs and civil society organization to build solutions for low-carbon development in Brazil.

The Colaboramerica Festival goes back to Rio de Janeiro and highlights climate changes as its main theme

From November 23 to 25, Colaboramerica, a festival of inspiration, connection and co-creation of new economic models in Latin America and in the world, was held in Rio de Janeiro. Gustavo Pinheiro, from iCS, participated in the “Climate Changes and the Opportunities of a Low-Carbon Economy” panel, as a speaker. On the agenda were the possible ways and opportunities to leverage a higher-oxygen economy in Brazil, with the support of technology associated with impact finance. Ana Toni, in turn, took part in the roundtable discussions on circular economy.

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Power
With the growth of its economy, Brazil uses more and more energy

Brasil uses an increasing volume of energy to generate economic growth which goes against the global trend of lower energy generation for an increased production of goods and services. The data from the International Energy Agency (IEA) show that, on the global average, energy intensity - a measure of the energy used to produce one dollar of GDP - fell by 1.8% in 2016. In Brazil, on the other hand, this indicator rose by 2% in the same year. The numbers, which also take into account the firewood used in Brazilian homes and the fuel of cars and trucks, can be explained by a number of factors, which range from the recession to planning failures and the lack of a consistent policy of energy efficiency. iCS has identified the need to improve energy efficiency in Brazil and has been working in partnership with EPE in this regard.

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Urban Mobility
Infographic shows the relationship between cyclists and pedestrians and the need for cities that are more bicycle- and pedestrian-friendly

iCS grantees Bike Anjo, Cidade Ativa, Como Anda and Corrida Amiga organized a Live Transmission on November 28, which involved a discussion on the relationship between cyclists and pedestrians and what measures are still necessary to enable the achievement of more bicycle- and pedestrian-friendly cities. They presented an infographic prepared as part of the #BicicletaNosPlanos campaign, which shows that 36% of daily travel within the Brazilian cities is done on foot and only 4% by bicycle. Besides, 80% of the road space is occupied by cars and motorcycles. See here the infographic, which has been prepared with the support of iCS.

Britain’s The Guardian accompanies a resident from the outskirts of São Paulo to experience the problems of public transportation

The British newspaper The Guardian published a lengthy article on the problems arising from the low historical investments by the authorities in public transportation in the city of São Paulo. Portraying Alcione, a citizen of São Paulo who lives in the neighborhood of Itaquaquecetuba, the article shows the difficulties that the population who live farthest away from the city center face on a daily basis, going to and from work. Gabriela Vuolo, from Cidade dos Sonhos (an iCS grantee), stated, in an interview to the Guardian, that the actual state of the bus system is invisible to those who do not go to the peripheries. Find the full text here.

Bike Anjo turns 7, with activities all over the country

Sunday, November 26, was a celebration day for Bike Anjo. The organization, which is a iCS grantee that teaches people to ride bicycles for free in Brazilian cities, in addition to providing safety and traffic notions, has turned 7. To date, there are 5,945 bike angels (as volunteer instructors are called) and 15,414 applications, in 619 cities of 28 countries. The celebration took place all over Brazil and included what the organization does best: to help people first get onto a bicycle and to promote transformation through bicycle use.

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What’s happening in Brazil
New law sanctioned by the government of Rio de Janeiro exempts donations to civil-society organizations from the payment of ITCMD

The government of the state of Rio de Janeiro sanctioned Law No. 7,786 on November 16. This law amends Law No. 7,174/2015, which deals with the Causa Mortis and Inter Vivos Donation Tax (“Imposto sobre Transmissão Causa Mortis e Doação” - ITCMD). From now on, donations to foundations and to civil society organizations (CSOs) are exempt from ITCMD in Rio. This initiative will also serve as an example for other states in the country. iCS, which organizes roundtables to talk about this topic, together with GIFE and other institutions, considers the new Law to be an important advance for CSOs.

“With this law, we no longer need to ask the government for a tax exemption. The legal text states that the exemption does not require certification. As long as the organization fulfills the requirements defined in the law, it is exempt. That's a big difference. It's a good step up, but there's still a lot to do. We still have all the other states to think about”, says Tatiana Zanotti, the Administration and Finance Manager of Clima e Sociedade, in an article published by GIFE.

Biofuel and oil subsidy bills passed in the House of Representatives and now await a vote by the Senate

The Environment Minister, José Sarney Filho, announced in Bonn a bill of law that establishes the RenovaBio Program, whose objective is to implement the National Biofuels Policy. On November 28, the House of Representatives approved the text that sets forth the rules for encouraging the production of renewable fuels in the country. The final wording , however, included amendments, such as the removal of the definition of compulsory annual targets for the addition of biodiesel to diesel oil and the addition of ethanol to gasoline. The maximum fine for non-compliance with individualized targets went from R$ 500 million to R$ 50 million. The bill now awaits a vote by the Federal Senate.

The following day, over 120 civil society organizations protested in the House of Representatives against the government’s proposal to offer subsidies to multinational oil companies to burn the pre-salt oil reserves. This is Provisional Measure 795/2017, which involves a tax waiver estimated at R$ 1 trillion, over 25 years. Despite the efforts, the Provisional measure was approved and will now also be submitted to a vote by the Federal Senate.

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Grants Approved in November
ISA – Instituto Socioambiental Grant Amount R$ 245.000 Grant Period 7 months Portfolio Climate Policy and Economy Purpose of Grant: To promote public accountability and enforcement of social, environmental and climatic rights in Brazil through the implementation of a litigation initiative in Federal Courts and a broad communication and mobilization initiative to foster public opinion support to legal actions.
Sitawi Grant Amount R$ 200.000 Grant Period 12 months Portfolio Climate Policy and Economy Purpose of Grant: To foster private investment in low carbon development by establishing a seed demonstrative fund to certify pioneer green bonds issuances that meet the requirements of high climatic additionality in key economic sectors related to the Brazilian National Determined Contribution (NDC).
Diálogo Chino Grant Amount R$ 45.000 Grant Period 6 months Portfolio Outreach Purpose of Grant: To produce articles with the goal to develop and exchange knowledge of the shared climate and energy challenges faced by emerging countries China and Brazil, in particular in relation to energy efficiency, passenger transportation and climate finance mechanism.
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