August 10th, 2018

Cash and carry: the missed opportunities of England’s plastic bag charge

by Iona Horton

 

There’s no doubt that England’s 5p plastic carrier bag charge has had an impact. We’ve all either been or seen the person who, on forgetting to bring a bag to the shops, refuses to pay for one and proceeds to cram their groceries into every available pocket. After some near escapes involving eggs, I never go anywhere without my trusty reusable.

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July 20th, 2018

How long should things last?

by Marcus Valentine and Steve Watson

 

This article began with an Xpelair extractor fan, made in England in 1972, and 46 years later removed from Marcus’s kitchen. Already installed when he moved in a decade ago, it had presumably provided continual service since soon after it was manufactured before he took interest in how something so thoroughly covered in grease could still be soldiering on.

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February 23rd, 2018

Avoidable confusion: the unwelcome return of TEEP

by Bethany Ledingham

 

The government’s long-awaited 25 year environment plan (25YEP) received a pretty lukewarm response when it was published in January: good as far as it went, but short on ambition, detail and money. Michael Gove may have outdone his predecessors by actually getting the 25YEP published, but it doesn’t seem that he managed to inject much new life into a document that Theresa May is said to have once ordered to be as boring as possible.

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September 15th, 2017

Informal gathering: improving waste management in the Philippines

by Amy Slack

 

You can’t separate the issue of marine litter from waste management. For those who work in waste, this might go without saying, but it is a truth that has really hit home with me over the last six weeks away from Eunomia, working in the Philippines.

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April 7th, 2017

Period of adjustment: the case for reusable feminine hygiene products

by Katharine Blacklaws and Harriet Parke

 

Periods. As a society we struggle to talk about them, think about them and sometimes even to acknowledge they exist. Despite the fact that they are part of the human experience for half the population, cultural taboos nonetheless persist into the 21st century.

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March 24th, 2017

Throw away your chains: waste in food manufacturing

by Mark Hilton

 

Much of the UK’s efforts to address food waste have been directed towards retailers and householders. This focus is not without some justification: household food waste accounts for nearly half of the nearly 10m tonnes of post-farm gate food waste in the UK each year. However, that should not lead us to ignore the substantial amounts of waste arising from other parts of the food supply chain, where there are fewer individual actors to influence and perhaps greater scope for small, cost-effective changes that result in significant reductions in waste.

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March 10th, 2017

Art of gold: Japanese ceramics and the circular economy

by Steve Watson

 

It’s a fundamental circular economy principle that we need to rethink how products are made so that they last longer and can be repaired or more easily recycled when their time is up. While the challenges this poses are significant enough, they are at least more tangible – in terms of design, engineering and policy – than the cultural task of, as consumers, reimaging what we want from our products.

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