Reproduced from Moody's, with April data from Refinitiv; Chart: Axios Visuals

In the short term, the coronavirus pandemic is reducing global emissions and helping clear out smog around the world, but it may end up doing more damage to the environment in the long term.

The big picture: The pandemic is helping reduce the use of fossil fuels, but it is decreasing investments in things like wind and solar power and financial assets like green bonds, says Jessica Ground, global head of stewardship at Schroders.

  • "Those longer-term issues that we need finance to solve like climate change haven’t gone away and they’re still going to be here whenever we emerge from lockdown."

Driving the news: In April, total issuance of ESG bonds — green, sustainability, and social bonds — increased by 272% year over year and was double the total from March, reaching $48.5 billion, according to data from Morgan Stanley.

  • And for the first time ever, monthly sustainability bond issuance ($19.4 billion) eclipsed green bond issuance ($16.8 billion).

What it means: ESG bonds are specifically earmarked to raise money for positive social outcomes or climate and environmental projects.

Yes, but: 76% of the total ESG issuance in April came from multilateral development banks, with the majority supporting COVID-19 relief efforts, Moody's found in a recent analysis.

  • The pandemic also is pushing more companies to issue new debt to fortify their balance sheets, crowding out green bonds and other environmentally focused financial instruments.

Where it stands: Total global sustainable bond issuance fell 32% in the first quarter from Q4 2019, and green bond volumes declined 49%, per Moody's.

  • Analysts now expect their original $400 billion forecast for total sustainable bond issuance in 2020 is no longer in reach and anticipate green bond volumes falling well below their previous estimate of $300 billion.

Go deeper: 10 ways coronavirus is changing energy and climate change

Go deeper

Aug 14, 2020 - Health

California passes 600,000 confirmed coronavirus cases

A healthcare worker in Los Angeles handling a coronavirus test on. Aug 11. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

California reported almost 8,000 new coronavirus cases on Friday, bringing the state's tally to more than 600,000 since the pandemic began, according to the state's Department of Public Health.

Why it matters: California is the first state to surpass the 600,000-case milestone. It also reported 188 deaths associated with the virus on Friday, bumping its total to almost 11,000 — the third-highest death toll in the U.S. behind New York and New Jersey, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Updated Oct 7, 2020 - Health

World coronavirus updates

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Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

New Zealand now has active no coronavirus cases in the community after the final six people linked to the Auckland cluster recovered, the country's Health Ministry confirmed in an email Wednesday.

The big picture: The country's second outbreak won't officially be declared closed until there have been "no new cases for two incubation periods," the ministry said. Auckland will join the rest of NZ in enjoying no domestic restrictions from late Wednesday, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said, declaring that NZ had "beat the virus again."

Aug 14, 2020 - Health

CDC: Those who recover from COVID-19 have 3-month window for safe mingling

Test tubes with blood samples of donors that have developed antibodies against the coronavirus. Photo: Robin Utrecht/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated its guidance Friday evening suggesting that those who test positive for COVID-19 and recover "do not need to quarantine or get tested again for up to 3 months as long as they do not develop symptoms again."

What they're saying: "...this science does not imply a person is immune to reinfection with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, in the 3 months following infection. The latest data simply suggests that retesting someone in the 3 months following initial infection is not necessary unless that person is exhibiting the symptoms of COVID-19 and the symptoms cannot be associated with another illness."