You can be sure of Shell? Probably not. The multinational oil company has come under intense criticism for only the most limited testing of a key piece of equipment aimed at preventing a Gulf of Mexico style blow out in its expected exploration in the Chukotka Sea off Alaska. Shell has said that it would use a ready-made containment dome that could cap off a well if anything went wrong, but Ben Aycliffe, a senior Greenpeace Campaigner for the Arctic said “The only option now is for the US Government to call a halt to Shell’s plans because the company is so clearly unable to operate safely in the planet’s most extreme environment”. It seems Shell spent just two hours (yes, ypu read that right, 2 hours) testing the system. Shell said that the containment dome was just one of a number of pieces of equipment that could be used in an emergency. Other scientists have warned that they are even more worried about drilling methods in the Russian Arctic, where environmental concerns were lower down the agenda.
Keep an eye out for the new docu-feature TRASHED, produced and directed by British filmmaker Candida Brady and fronted by Jeremy Irons which has been selected to receive a Special Screening at the Cannes Film Festival this month. The film sets out to discover the extent and effects of the global waste problem – especially on places of natural beauty. You can find out more at http://www.trashedfilm.com/
Stack-Cup™ is washable, durable, and reusable cup for live events – a green solution for contributing to today’s growing revolution against a throw-away society – and it boasts a unique patented handle design that enables spiral-pattern stacking for easy portability. More at stack-cup.com/.
Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage Canteen in Plymouth has been rated the UK’s most sustainable restaurant by the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA). The Canteen narrowly beat Dixcart Bay Hotel, Sark, which scored 88% in its rating in July.
Energy-from-waste companies are sitting on a lucrative “gold mine” of valuable metals in incinerator bottom ash which they could profit from if these materials were recovered.
The UK Government must begin planning against the increased health risks that climate change could bring to the UK, according to a report published today by the Health Protection Agency (HPA). The study, Health Effects of Climate Change in the UK 2012, looks at the effect of temperature rises on death rates in hot and cold spells and the impact a changing climate will have on pollen production, outdoor and indoor air pollution, floods, ultraviolet radiation, food, water and insect-borne diseases.
The European Commission has launched an anti-dumping investigation into imports of solar panels from China. More on Edie.net
Edie.net reports that seabed pollution at almost two thirds of Scottish salmon farms is either unsatisfactory or borderline. A Salmon and Trout Association (S&TA) study reviewed 311 reports of seabed self-monitoring by farms between 2009 and March 2012. Of these, 44% were deemed by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) as “unsatisfactory,” 21% were considered “borderline” and only 34% were considered satisfactory.
Particle physicist, ex-D:REAM keyboard player and now TV star Professor Brian Cox has calculated the cost of sending waste into space based on current space technology capabilities
According to Cox, the cheapest rate a rocket could launch mass into the lower earth orbit would be $2,000 per kilogram – and to blast it further out of the earth’s orbit would cost even more!
Tesco expects to make 30% energy savings at its first store run solely on LED lighting, as it continues to move towards its target of being carbon neutral by 2050.
Fujitsu has developed what it claims is the industry’s first system for recycling used CDs and DVDs into new notebook PCs. The Japanese manufacturer will embark on a pioneering closed loop venture to collect the CDs and DVDs at its own recycling centres across the country and reuse them by incorporating the plastic into the bodies of its notebook products.
The UK’s Environment Agency has launched an initiative to encourage debate and discussion on what it takes to achieve greener businesses in economically challenging times. The initiative aims to highlight hundreds of organisations driving greener business approaches and to recognise the SMEs, entrepreneurs and other businesses helping to improve the environment and reduce carbon emissions. A wide range of organisations including Waterwise, Keep Britain Tidy, the Carbon Trust, the Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM), Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) will be joining the Environment Agency to carry out the initiative and the publication of the new Greener Business Report this autumn.