October 12th, 2018

Should horses run on tyres?

by Alice Thomson

 

Horses require year-round exercise even when the conditions outdoors disagree. It’s not that horses particularly mind a bit of mud, but difficult weather conditions can raise the risk of injury and limit options for exercise. The multimillion-pound equestrian industry has adopted technological solutions to address this problem, but those proving most popular raise significant but little-appreciated environmental concerns.

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October 5th, 2018

Sound effects: the problem of sonic litter

by Steve Watson

 

How is a drum and bass banger like a polystyrene takeaway container? Maybe you’re thinking that they’re both most likely encountered at 2am on a Friday night down the town centre. But I’m more concerned about their presence down residential streets during waking hours. In fact, I’m thinking both should be considered forms of environmental pollution.

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May 25th, 2018

Sanitary check: a year’s progress on menstrual products

Tampon Applicator Beach Litter

by Katharine Blacklaws and Natalie Fee

 

The ‘Blue Planet Effect’ following David Attenborough’s celebrated documentary series has led to a wide-ranging and popular ‘War on Plastic’. It has been endorsed by both the Prime Minister and the Queen; while organisations across the land, ranging from the BBC and Parliament to small businesses, have taken action to reduce or eliminate single use plastics. But while our cultural acceptance of the ubiquity of throwaway plastic is undergoing a serious challenge, attitudes to the 4.3 billion disposable sanitary products (sanpro) that are used in the UK every year seem slower to change, despite the large amount of plastic they contain. Hardly anyone would flush plastic bags down the loo, but we don’t apply the same standard to sanpro.

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January 5th, 2018

The uncalculated benefits of pollution control

by Phil Sheppard

 

Did you know that, while the effects of chemical pollution on human health are poorly defined, its contribution to the global burden of disease is almost certainly underestimated?

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July 14th, 2017

No-fly zone: is low carbon travel worth the effort?

by Sarah Ettlinger

 

I last set foot on an aeroplane in 2015, for a Copenhagen-London round trip. The time before that was the same journey in 2008. Yet during this time I have split my time between Denmark and the UK for reasons of work, study and family, and thus still chosen to travel a lot. These days, my ‘commute’ is to the UK from my base in Copenhagen once each quarter.

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May 10th, 2017

Air cover: politics and the air quality plan

by Dominic Hogg

 

The Government finally published its long awaited revised air quality plan, albeit in draft form, last Friday. Many have expressed disappointment with its lack of ambition, but less has been written about the signs of some key last minute ‘tweaks’. The apparent aim of the late changes was to minimise the risk of a potential political backlash against the plan from angry diesel drivers – but their effect could well be to delay the effective action on air quality that is so urgently needed.

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April 21st, 2017

Waste to wealth in Uganda

by George Cole

 

At home in the UK, I’m used to the council regularly collecting my household waste from the street outside my door. Missing a waste collection is a little inconvenient. You have to keep the waste until the next collection day, by which time you might have more waste than you can fit in your boxes and bins.

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