Maitland/AMO Green – 4 October 2018

4th October 2018

In Business

  • CHARGED: Germany-based Hubject and China-based Star Charge, two of the biggest businesses in electric vehicle charging, have agreed to lay the foundations for the “world’s largest charging network”.The companies have said they aim build an international network of over 100,000 charge points open to any EV driver.
  • RECHARGED: Currys PC World has launched a new scheme to boost heavy metal recycling. The store will equip its stores and 365 home installation vans to double up as mobile battery collection services.
  • LIKE A VIRGIN: Richard Branson has said he is poised to launch the first commercial flight using waste-based biofuel. Virgin Atlantic’s VS16 flight from Orlando to London Gatwick will arrive tomorrow morning and is expected to use a new jet fuel, developed with support from the UK and US governments, made from recycling waste carbon gases.

In Politics

  • FEEDING CHANGE: In his speech to the Conservative conference the Environment Secretary, Michael Gove, unveiled a new initiative to redistribute almost £1 bn worth of food waste from supermarkets and manufacturers to charities. In a statement, Defra said the consultation will ensure the scheme “drives down food waste in the most effective way possible”.
  • BABY, BATHWATER: Environment Secretary, Michael Gove, has suggested disposable nappies could face government action. Though he has ruled out banning them, he indicated Defra was looking at ways to reduce their use. Disposable nappies make up around 3 percent of average household waste and take hundreds of years to degrade.
  • WASTING THE FUTURE? The London Assembly Environment Committee have urged London Mayor, Sadiq Khan, to sign the city up to WRAP’s UK Plastics Pact. The Pact has been signed by 99 organisations so far, including Marks & Spencer and Defra.
  • WATT? EU diplomats have admitted the introduction of new energy efficient products, including fridges and dishwashers, has been delayed. The new eco-designs for common products are considered crucial to meeting Europe’s Paris climate pledge.

In Innovation 

  • TO BOLDLY GO: The UN and European Commission have launched a new platform to address plastic pollution. The Global Plastics Platform will share best practice to reducing plastics and transitioning to a circular economy.
  • FLAT-PACK AND FRIES: Ecovative, the startup making biodegradable packaging for Ikea, believes the mushroom roots it uses to protect furniture could be used to create lab-grown meats.
  • BUZZ OF THE DAY: The Evening Standard profiles London’s most sustainable restaurants, from beeswax packaging in the kitchens to gourmet food made from leftovers.
  • HAMMAR TIME: Stockholm’s most environmental suburb, built on a former industrial wasteland, has been inspiring new neighbourhoods across the globe. Hammarby Sjöstad’s range of environmental innovations support 25,000 people and is on track to become a net zero greenhouse gas emitter by 2030. Its methods are now known as the Hammarby Model.
  • LEAVE ONLY FOOTPRINTS: The demand for sustainable tourism has driven a new type of travel agency. Mauritius Conscious encapsulates the trend with its agents assessing businesses on 12 different ethical criteria before they are promoted. The agency also offers C02-free tourist actives and promotes local micro-enterprises.

In Peril

  • NO PULSE: The Blue Marine Foundation and Bloom, marine conservation charities, have revealed Dutch trawlers are electrocuting fish in British marine reserves. In January the European parliament voted to ban pulse fishing but the European Commission overruled the decision saying it needed to continue to study the impact of the technique.
  • DOCUMENTED DROWNING: A new BBC documentary has focused on plastic pollution in the sea. “Drowning in Plastic” revealed plastic could outweigh fish by 2050.
  • FREE WILLY? Research led by the Zoological Society of London has warned toxic chemical pollutants could trigger a “killer whale apocalypse”, causing the whales to disappear entirely from parts of the ocean within a few decades. While many of the chemicals cited  are banned, they still pose a threat in the sea where their build up attacks the whales immune systems and ability to reproduce.
  • POLLOCKS: The Marine Conservation society has urged consumers to eat more pollock and less squid to alleviate pressure on threatened stocks. The MCS’s latest Good Fish Guide has been published.

In Investment

  • EMERALD BONDS: Ireland plans to release a green bond before the end of this year. The market for green bonds has grown rapidly in recent years but Ireland will be just the eighth sovereign nation to sell a green bond.
  • SMOKED SMOGG SMOTE: Carmignac, France’s largest independent asset manager, has joined the battle against climate change by formalising its long-term policy of excluding tobacco producing companies and coal miners.
  • GOOD TO GO: Good Money Week 2018 has been showcasing the case for ESG investing all this week. Its latest surveys show that while 85 percent of British millennials are investing in ethical and socially responsible funds, this declines to 69 percent of those 55 years or older.
  • GO TO GOOD: The Association of Charitable Foundations have found charitable foundations gave out £3.3bn worth of grants in 2016/17. This is a 10.9 percent increase on the previous financial year.
  • WASTED INVESTMENT: London has dropped from first to third place in a global ranking of the world’s greenest financial centres. The Global Green Finance Index ranks 59 cities. Amsterdam has been named global leader in the latest ranking.

Installation of the Week – Design Museum, London

Ikea has unveiled a symbolic ‘last straw’ installation at London’s Design Museum. Ikea have banned plastic straws from their stores and will phase out all single-use plastic products globally by 2020.

Survey of the Week

Ipsos Mori has revealed forty percent of Europeans believe their next car is likely to be electric.