ANOTHER PLANET?

Mobile Visual Information Services (MVIS) have launched a solar powered multi use trailer platform capable of delivering cost savings and operation efficiencies in traffic and venue management. It runs as a stand alone unit with a 12V battery powered by 250w PV panels.

Nantes Saint-Nazaire, which is a major conference venue, is the European ‘Green’ city for 2013, the first French city to hold the title.

SHAMBALAShambala Festival has won the top level three star Industry Green (IG) award from Julies Bicyle, highlighting the event’s success in reducing its carbon footprint and greenhouse gas emissions.

Professor Lee White, head of Gabon’s National Park Service, has said the forest elephants could be wiped out on five years as the demand for ivory fro the booming markets of China and South East Asia fuels poaching. The forest elephants are smaller than their savannah cousins and their ivory has a pinkish tinge and is less brittle to carve and along with rhino horn can generate huge cash rewards – rhino horn can sell for up to US $60,000 per kilogram, ivory $2,000 per kilo.  China has denied the claims pointing to its regulated ivory market – 37 companies can work with ivory, 145 others are licensed to sell ivory products – despite evidence that its illegal  ivory market dwarfs the legal counterpart. Ya Xun fron the Chinese state Forestry Commission said “Has China’s legal ivory trade caused the poaching of wild elephants? I don’t think there is necessarily a connection” and that other factors such as competition between humans and elephants was to blame for poaching. The price of ivory had risen threefold between 2006 and 2011.

peral bordredThe UK’s wildlife has suffered 50 years of relentless decline according to a new report, State of Nature, compiled by 25 conservation bodies. Birds, small mammals and insects have all suffered – Grey partridges have declined by 91%, there are just 1 million hedgehogs left (there were 36 million 50 years ago), starlings are 80% down, water voles 88% were down in just 7 years in the nineties, turtle doves 93% down, High Brown Fritillary butterflies have declined 79% and the Wood White is 65% down. The reasons for the decline are destruction of natural habitats and climate change.

A call for fact-based research on the role of renewables within the UK’s energy mix has been issued by cross-party think tank Carbon Connect. The call came during the launch of an inquiry into the role of renewable energy in future of UK electricity generation. Speaking at the event, Opposition Energy and Climate Change Spokesperson in the House of Lords, Baroness Worthington, said: “We need less ideology and more evidence within the energy debate. That is what characterised the first report of the Future Electricity Series and will continue in [this enquiry].

Royal Bank of Scotland’s (RBS) deputy head of sustainability Duncan Young has highlighted the importance of sustainability reporting in shrugging off the negative reputation of his company. Speaking at the Sustainability Communications Forum, Mr Young noted that a ranking one year ago showed RBS was the most “reputationally challenged” company in the UK.

The UK Government has announced plans to amend the Energy Bill to include financial incentives via the capacity market to deliver permanent reductions in the UK’s electricity demand. The proposal is a response to a consultation launched by the Government in November 2012, which sought views on a range of options to unlock the potential benefits of energy efficiency including the use of financial and non-financial incentives.

windturbines_300The Carbon Trust today unveiled its latest wind energy research project which aims to help the industry to improve prediction accuracy, reduce financing costs and optimise wind farm layouts. The project will help cut the cost of offshore wind power by increasing the energy yields from Round 3 wind farms, located up to 290Km from the UK coast. The new £2m ‘wake effects’ measurement project, which looks at the loss of wind power as it passes through the wind farm, will provide detailed measurement data to the wind industry to help better understand how the wind behaves in complex situations offshore. http://www.edie.net/news/6/Carbon-Trust-launches-2m-offshore-wind-project-to-increase-energy-yields/

American tycoon Donald Trump has launched a legal case against plans to build an offshore wind turbine test facility off Aberdeenshire, Scotland. Investigation work started last week at the site of the proposed wind farm, despite staunch opposition from Trump whose luxury golf course is located nearby.

DRAX POWERGreenhouse gas emissions from power plants and manufacturing installations participating in the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) fell by 2% last year, according to new data from the European Union (EU). According to the EU, greenhouse gas emissions from “stationary installations” have fallen to 1,867 billion tonnes of CO2-equivalent last year, about 2% below the 2011 level for installations. EU climate action commissioner Connie Hedegaard said: “The good news is that emissions declined again in 2012. The bad news is that the supply-demand imbalance has further worsened in large part due to a record use of international credits. http://www.edie.net/news/6/EU-ETS-emissions-fall-2-percent-but-surplus-allowances-approach-2-billion-/

The Environmental Industries Commission (EIC) has called on the Government to provide incentives to stimulate greater resource efficiency in the UK economy. EIC director of policy & public affairs Michael Lunn told edie that ministers did not seem to be putting in the time nor the resources to move the UK towards a resource-efficient economy. His comments come after an EIC delegation returned from China where it signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on 13 May with the Chinese Society for Environmental Sciences, which reports to the Chinese Environmental Ministry. The MoU eases UK environmental firms’ access to Chinese markets.

The waste sector must have “sensible policy and strategic development” if the UK is serious about achieving the new and ambitious five-year recycling targets for plastic packaging from 2013 to 2017. Unless urgent action is taken, the nation will struggle to meet these targets and could be left with a legacy of poor quality material, which will affect the whole industry, leading plastics recycling association Recoup has warned.

Abbey Metals Limited has been ordered to pay a £133,000 fine and £33,000 in costs for polluting the River Anker, following a fire at one of its operating sites in Nuneaton, Warwickshire. The aerospace and industrial surface treatments provider was sentenced at Birmingham Crown Court on a charge of failing to take measures to prevent major accidents and limit its consequences to the environment. The company also pleaded guilty to three other charges under the Environmental Permitting Regulations 2010, which included breaches of its environmental permit around failing to prevent emissions of contaminated firewater, and failing to meet Environmental Quality Standards for cyanides, copper and cadmium in the River Anker.

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