31

DEC

The launch of a new site mixing sustainable innovation

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The launch of a new site mixing sustainable innovation, community action and some massive corporations could be set to increase debate around the shape of the ‘green economy’. Collectively.org has the support of companies like Google and Coca-Cola, and showcases more than just green innovation, but there are some well-known thinkers from environmental activism behind it, including Jonathan Porritt, founder of Forum for the Future. It’s about engaging community action, an

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19

DEC

The Power Africa Off-Grid Energy Challenge

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Political tensions can push energy innovators from future-gazing to dealing with present problems. This is certainly proving true in Ukraine, where a group of tech wizards are trying to build a more collaborative and renewable-based energy system in the face of border troubles with Russia and European market reform. Solar panels, laptops and good ideas are the basis of a series of energy ‘hackathons’led by Greencubator. These meetings have generally happened in rural areas, ful

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16

DEC

Fundamental to this is the Climate Change Act

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Some of the biggest names in construction have come out in support of green building, claiming that firm targets to reduce carbon emissions are “far from a burden” to them or the economy at large. In a letter to the Daily Telegraph, signed by representatives of giants such as Balfour Beatty and Saint-Gobain, plus sustainable building products specialists like Rockwool and Knauf, the companies, under the banner of the UK Green Building Council (UKGBC), show unequivocal supp

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15

DEC

accompanied by some criticism of solar farms

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Government ministers have been asserting their aim to turn solar investment away from the ground and towards roofs – accompanied by some criticism of solar farms. Whether these developments are a ‘blot on the landscape’ is more down to personal opinion than anything else, but concerns about land use, and Britain’s potential to grow enough food, persist. While announcing plans to remove agricultural subsidies on land used for solar, the environment secretary Liz

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10

DEC

UN climate talks

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The latest round of UN climate talks have been under way in Peru for more than a week now – and it’s undeniable that there’s a greater mood of optimism about forging a strong, binding agreement in place next year in Paris. Perhaps it’s got something to do with the kind of high-level backing action on climate change is getting these days. The World Bank has chimed in just ahead of the talks with Turn Down the Heat: Confronting the New Climate Normal – a re

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9

DEC

EU Carbon Targets at Risk from Biomass

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Biomass boilers in the UK are working between 10% and 20% less efficiently than they should, leading to higher emissions than those observed in laboratory testing, a report published by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has found. Desk-based review of performance and installation practices of biomass boilers was commissioned by the DECC to better understand the real-life performance of biomass heating systems. It revealed the lack of installation standards in the UK is damagin

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