April 13th, 2018

China crisis: what import restrictions mean for Europe

by Ad Lansink

 

Over recent years, the Chinese government became increasingly aware that solid waste being imported into China for recycling also contained large amounts of dirty and hazardous wastes. To ensure the health of its citizens and protect China against serious environmental pollution, in 2013 it launched ‘Operation Green Fence’, which stepped up container inspections with the aim of stopping shipments of illegal and low quality waste. This was followed in 2017 with operation ‘National Sword’, which specifically targeted imports of WEEE and industrial waste.

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August 4th, 2017

Myth takes: renewables consume more energy than they produce

by Peter Jones

 

I had a kitchen contractor over to quote for some work in my house. As he ran a company that specialised in using reclaimed wood, the conversation turned to green issues – and let’s just say he wasn’t averse to sharing his opinions. “Those wind turbines,” he grumbled, “they’re an eyesore and they’re not even carbon neutral.”

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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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December 4th, 2015

COP 21: what wood George Perkins Marsh do?

by Sophie Harvey-Franklin

 

This week, delegates from 195 countries are coming together in Paris to discuss a global approach to tackling climate change. It’s the 21st meeting of the Conference of the Parties (or COP) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and after the disappointingly scant results of previous meetings, this time there are some more encouraging signs.

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November 13th, 2015

Look, no hands: tackling air pollution and climate change

by Dominic Hogg

 

If there is a silver lining around the breath-constricting cloud that hangs over Volkswagen (and, perhaps, other manufacturers of diesel vehicles as well), it’s that the publicity raises awareness of the damages caused by air pollution. While a cadre of politicians and journalists strive to maintain the impression that there’s a debate to be had on the science of climate change, there’s far less dissent from the view that air pollution brings a trail of misery, and even death, in its wake.

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March 19th, 2014

Incineration: let’s get fiscal

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by Dominic Hogg

 

If you are serious about encouraging waste prevention, eco-design, re-use, remanufacture and high recycling rates, then it helps if you stop people throwing stuff away for peanuts. A high price on residual waste management is not a panacea; and it isn’t impossible to achieve good results in its absence. However, the decline in recycling rates in Germany as incinerator gate fees have bombed is testament to the fact that, whatever other regulations you have in place, at some point the economic imperative begins to bite: make chucking stuff away cheap, and it will kill off better alternatives.

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August 30th, 2013

Playing chicken with the climate: why environmentalists should go veggie

by Francis Vergunst

 

You’ve heard it from the Greens, you’ve heard it from your friends, you’ve probably even heard it from your grandma… and now you’re hearing it from the government too. What’s the big deal? Do we really need to eat less meat – or none at all? I would argue that becoming vegetarian could be the most effective action you take against climate change. Consider the following.

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