UK supermarkets launch voluntary pledge to cut plastic packaging

UK supermarkets and food companies launched a new voluntary pledge to cut plastic packaging on Thursday as ministers consider forcing them to pay more towards collecting and recycling the waste they produce.

In a first response to a growing public backlash against the huge volumes of plastic rubbish, most of the UK’s largest supermarkets signed up to support the UK Plastics Pact – an industry-wide initiative which says it aims to transform packaging and reduce avoidable plastic waste.

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Source: The Guardian

Etihad Airways slashes carbon emission in ’17

Etihad Airways successfully eliminated around 195,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions in 2017, thanks to a wide range of fuel-saving initiatives across its network.

Following a number of improvements aimed at enhancing operational efficiencies, Etihad was able to reduce the amount of fuel consumed by its aircraft by over 62,000 tons of fuel. The result represents a 3.3 per cent improvement from the year before, and is the equivalent of 850 flights between Abu Dhabi and London.

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Source: Saudi Gazette

Thomas Cook launches new sustainability strategy

Thomas Cook has unveiled a new sustainability strategy which seeks to lower fuel emissions, reduce food waste in resort and increase charitable activity.

The three-year strategy follows a year-long review of the operator’s sustainability activity and aims to “limit environmental impacts and maximise the social and economic benefits” of travel.

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Source: Travel Weekly

UEFA and the European Commission join forces for sustainability

A new agreement has been signed to further sustainable development at Europe’s football grounds, sports facilities and stadiums.

UEFA, football’s governing body in Europe, and the European Commission have signed an agreement in Brussels this week that will see the two cooperate on issues around sustainability, fair competition, good governance and integrity within the game.

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Source: Climate Action

CDP data reveals shortfall in carbon disclosure by North American companies

Many North American companies are not fully disclosing their carbon emissions — especially from their supply chain and use of products. For many sectors, this is where most risks lie. Nevertheless, there are encouraging signs that companies are investigating these blind spots and taking action to prepare for the low-carbon transition.

The findings come in Trucost’s analysis of the latest data on carbon disclosure gathered by CDP from companies in 2017. Some 1,900 companies worldwide responded to CDP’s data request, of which about a quarter are headquartered in the U.S or Canada.

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Source: Green Biz

Experts have worked out the carbon footprint of your sarnie

It could be time to give up your daily BLT…

The British public eat over 11.5bn sandwiches every year, spending around £8bn in the process, according to the British Sandwich Association (yes, there really is such a thing).

But whether your choice is the classic cheese and tomato or the heartier chicken and bacon, your sarnie option could have more riding on it than you think.

Researchers from the University of Manchester carried out the first ever study into the carbon footprint of sandwiches, for both ready-made and home-made products.

More than 40 different sandwich recipes were studied, with researchers taking into consideration the whole life-cycle of the sandwich from farming the raw ingredients to packaging and transportation as well as refrigeration and food waste.

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Source: BBC

Government returns to court over air quality plans

UK government once again forced to defend its plans to tackle air pollution in face of ClientEarth legal challenge

The UK government is back in court once again today to defend its plan to cut air pollution across England against a challenge from environmental law firm ClientEarth.

It is the third time the UK government has faced a legal challenge over the same issue, with previous cases resulting in rulings forcing the government to rewrite the plan to make it stronger and more ambitious.

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Source: Business Green

Theresa May proposes plastic-free supermarket aisles in green strategy

PM declares war on scourge of plastic waste as she unveils much-heralded 25-year environmental plan.

Theresa May has announced a war on plastic waste, with proposed policies including plastics-free aisles in supermarkets and a tax on takeaway containers.

The prime minister set out her ambition to eliminate all avoidable plastic waste within 25 years in a speech on Thursday in which she promised the UK would lead internationally on environmental issues. But campaign groups said the aspirations would need to be backed up by legislation.

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Source: The Guardian

Non-carbon-emitting electricity generation in UK hits new highs

Government figures showing over half of electricity generation by renewables and nuclear in the third quarter of 2017 prove renewables are viable, says think tank

Statistics released by the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) shortly before Christmas reveal that low-carbon generation accounted for 54.4 per cent of all electricity contributed to the National Grid in the third quarter of 2017, with renewables’ share accounting for 30 per cent of the total, a record for this period of the year. Renewables’ share was up almost 5 per cent year on year, owing to increased generation capacity, BEIS added.

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Source: Engineer

Iceland’s fightback against climate change turns Carbon Dioxide into rock

Seven miles outside the Icelandic capital of Reykjavik, a remarkable fight back against climate change is starting to take shape.

To tackle Carbon Dioxide (CO2) in the Earth’s atmosphere, some scientists want to suck it from the air using special filtering boxes.

These machines can take CO2 from the air and turn it into rock underground.

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Source: ITV News