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America’s offshore wind power industry risks being left “dead in the water” if the US clamps down on the use of foreign materials and equipment, according to the Spanish-owned company jointly building the country’s first big project.
Bill White, head of offshore wind at Avangrid, part of Iberdrola, said that demands for local content could cripple development of offshore wind farms that for now rely on equipment made in Europe.
Congressional Democrats last week unveiled green tax credits in a proposed $3.5tn infrastructure package they hope will help clean up the electricity sector by sparking a boom in renewable energy.
But the proposed legislation includes clauses linking some tax credits with targets for job creation and the use of US steel — provisions that operators say could raise costs and slow down construction.
Do you have any feedback on the newsletter? Let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for reading FirstFT Europe/Africa — Jennifer
Five more stories in the news
1. Hedge funds riding crypto wave post bumper returns Cryptocurrency hedge funds gained nearly 24 per cent in August as large price swings in digital assets helped them outperform investors in sleepy equities and currencies markets.
Fighting the good fight? A Twitter salvo by Coinbase boss Brian Armstrong reflected rising anger among crypto entrepreneurs who argue that regulators are holding back innovation.
Go deeper: Regulators fear that blockchain technologies will make it easier for criminals and kleptocrats to move money around the global financial system.
2. Signs US inflation is levelling off US government bonds rallied while bank shares weighed on major stock markets yesterday, as moderating US inflation warmed investors to the view that the Federal Reserve would have more time to remove crisis-era stimulus.
3. Apple introduces four iPhones in product event Apple launched four 5G-enabled iPhones and unveiled an array of refreshes to some of its most popular devices, including the iPad and Watch, as the world’s most valuable company attempted to refocus the public’s attention after months of antitrust scrutiny.
4. German liberal leader signals bumps on road to coalition Christian Lindner, the leader of Germany’s liberal Free Democratic party, has set strict conditions for joining a possible coalition with the Social Democrats and Greens after the national election, demanding tax cuts, curbs on new borrowing and a return to pre-pandemic spending rules.
5. Chinese ambassador banned from Houses of Parliament event The UK parliament’s two Speakers have banned Zheng Zeguang from attending a reception amid wider outrage over human rights abuses in China, in a move that risks further damaging bilateral ties.
Vaccine passports, mandatory face masks and work-from-home orders will be reintroduced in England if the NHS faces unsustainable pressure this winter, Boris Johnson announced yesterday.
The UK has joined nine other nations, including France and Israel, in announcing booster jab campaigns. The head of the country’s largest rapid test supplier, expects an end to the provision of free kits to the public by spring 2022.
Pfizer said it expected to apply in November for US authorisation of its vaccine for children aged between six months and five years old. Today, the FT hosts a digital conference on the future of healthcare in the US. Register for the event here.
Vladimir Putin has said he will self-isolate for a “period of time” after being exposed to coronavirus in an apparent outbreak in the Kremlin. (FT, Bloomberg)
The FT View is that the UK is right to press ahead, belatedly, with boosters and vaccines for teens. Follow our live coronavirus blog for more and sign up to our Coronavirus Business Update newsletter on how the pandemic is affecting the markets, global business, our workplaces and daily lives.
The day ahead
Ursula von der Leyen’s State of the EU speech The European Commission president will address the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France today. It will come as the bloc’s statistics agency, Eurostat, publishes industrial production figures. For the latest news from the continent, and for the news you need to know ahead of Germany’s upcoming pivotal election, sign up for our Europe Express newsletter.
UK culture secretary to defend Channel 4 sell-off In an address to the Royal Television Society conference in Cambridge, Oliver Dowden will defend government plans to privatise the broadcaster, arguing that “a granny in Stockport or Southend” should not have to underwrite investments required to compete with the likes of Netflix.
What else we’re reading
Brexit: an exercise in quiet damage limitation For the first time in the five years since the Brexit referendum, acrimony in the relationship between the EU and the UK shows tentative signs of thawing. Rhetorical hostilities are as fierce as ever, but on the ground, both sides are quietly moving into damage limitation mode, writes Chris Giles.
China’s cosmetic surgery to get a facelift Since the start of July, the market value of the country’s three largest publicly traded medical aesthetics companies has fallen by a third, despite the popularity of cosmetic procedures. That shift in investor sentiment comes as state media ramps up criticism of the industry for promoting the idolisation of physical appearances — and some youths are welcoming the reckoning.
Turkish wall to keep out Afghan refugees President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was once the champion of his country’s open-door policy, especially for 3.6m displaced Syrians. But a faltering economy has soured public sentiment towards foreigners, eating into support for his party. Now he has vowed Turkey will not serve as Europe’s “warehouse” for refugees.
The flexibility factor: who is going back to the office? FT management editor Andrew Hill assesses the latest return-to-work plans at some of the world’s biggest companies. Working at home may also lower emissions in some cases but in others, it may just shift them around.
The return of Parler George Farmer, a 31-year-old former hedge fund partner and the Oxford university-educated son of a British baron, has been plotting a route back for the “free speech” social network that attracted millions of Donald Trump’s supporters in the run-up to last year’s US election. San Francisco tech correspondent Hannah Murphy interviewed him about his plans for the controversial app.
Are you a ‘skinimalist’? A wave of skincare brands and products — akin to the normcore trend that has infiltrated fashion — has emerged to simplify, demystify and even underplay your beauty regime, writes Nicola Moulton.