September 11th, 2018

Law in disorder: the Environment Agency and the waste hierarchy

by Peter Jones   Plenty of legislation is poorly written. Some is badly thought out, or pursues objectionable goals. But I’m only aware of one instance of legislation that is untrue. Laws rarely make statements of fact of the kind that can be true or false. For the most part, legislation: directs or forbids actions; […]


June 1st, 2018

Food for thought: should we stop using palm oil?

by Debbie Fletcher   Recently, haunted by images of deforestation and homeless orangutans, I decided to cut palm oil out of my diet. After spending a long time during my weekly shop carefully checking lists of ingredients, I can report that going palm oil free is incredibly difficult. Not only is the stuff present in […]


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 […]


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 […]


July 1st, 2016

Taking stocks: is Brexit possible for UK fisheries?

by Thomas Appleby   Britain’s legal bilateral arrangements with its neighbours on fishing rights date back to the middle ages. Yet many fishermen have broken with this international tradition and voted to leave the EU on the basis that Brexit will result in greater fishing rights for British vessels. However, while a vote can be […]


June 22nd, 2016

Unknown environment? Brexit certainties and uncertainties

by Dominic Hogg   Much has been written in recent weeks – tomes, in fact – regarding the EU membership referendum decision that faces UK citizens. Each day, we are drip-fed new opinion, and new faces come to the fore in the media, swearing their allegiance to one or other side. Just occasionally, a little […]


June 10th, 2016

Resource plumbing: plugging the leaks in the circular economy

by Ad Lansink   Zero waste, Cradle to Cradle design and the Circular Economy are all great concepts, presenting attractive targets to work towards. However, their ultimate feasibility is another matter. As we use and recycle products, won’t there always be some loss of material? Across different technological and biological chains, time and time again […]