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September 21, 2016

French study shows organic food is healthier

by David Masters
Sustainability Environment

Organic food is better for you, according to a new report from the French food agency. The AFSSA report claimed organic plants product more dry matter, minerals and anti-oxidents. Between 94% and 100% of organic food did not contain any pesticide residues, while organic vegetables were found to contain 50% fewer nitrates. The report contradicts claims earlier this year by Britain's Food Standards Agency (FSA) that organic food has no health benefits. Denis Lairon, ...





September 18, 2016

Northern Ireland reveals climate concern

by David Masters
Environment

Floods, damage to wildlife, severe weather, and a more polluted atmosphere are the main worries of people in Northern Ireland when asked about climate change. Unlike the country's former environment minister Sammy Wilson who argued that climate change was not caused by human activity, the majority of people in Northern Ireland believe climate change is caused by a mixture of human activity and natural processes. Edwin Poots, Northern Ireland's new environment minister, ...





September 17, 2016

Public fed up with “self-righteous” environmentalists

by David Masters
Environment

Britain is bored with hearing about climate change, fed up with "smug" environmentalists, and cynical about green government initiatives, according to a new report. Research by the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) found climate change-related communications cause most people to switch off. Interviews and workshops by IPPR discovered people are tired of hearing about climate change despite its implications. The public either views the government's stance on climate change as an excuse ...





September 15, 2016

Queen told to give up land for allotments

by David Masters
Sustainability Environment

The 100,000 people waiting for an allotment could all be given a vegetable patch if local councils converted brownfield sites and the Queen gave up some of her land. A report published this week by the New Local Government Network thinktank said the Government should offer tax incentives to landowners who rent out unused plots as allotments. In some areas of the UK, waiting lists for allotments are up to 40 ...





September 11, 2015

Consumers embrace tinted recycled glass

by David Masters
Sustainability

Consumers are "just as likely" to buy food and drink packaged in tinted recycled glass, according to a government-commissioned study. Research by the Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP) in partnership with Sainsbury's found customers are not put off buying products packaged in glass tinted with a green hue. In 90% of cases, customers were equally likely to buy products packaged in mixed-colour recycled glass. Mayonnaise was found to be the only product ...





September 10, 2009

Save on energy bills by upgrading your fridge

by David Masters
Energy

Comet is offering a 20% discount for customers who part exchange their old fridge, freezer or washing machine for a new model. Customers at the electrical store will be offered up to £200 cashback for their used appliances and white goods. There are currently 15 million fridges, freezers and washing machines over ten years old in UK homes. The British Retail Consortium (BRC) estimates replacing these would cut the UK's carbon emissions 1.3 ...





September 9, 2009

Fish farms threaten marine eco-system

by David Masters
Sustainability

Consumer demand for fish with high levels of omega-3 fatty acid means half of all fish consumed worldwide are raised on farms. The health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids are well known, but a new study has found that demand for fish with high levels of these oils is stretching the marine system to breaking point. This is because farmed fish are fed large quantities of fishmeal and fish oil made from ...





London encouraged to drink regular tap water

by Alan Harten

In an effort to promote awareness of tap water as a viable option over bottled water businesses, MPs, and community groups across London will receive a total of ten thousand water carafes designed by the Thames Water. The Houses of Parliament will also receive some water carafes which chief executive of Thames Water, David Owns, said he hopes will make MPs think about drinking tap water on a frequent basis. Even the ...





September 4, 2009

Wales ahead of schedule on landfill targets

by David Masters
Environment Money

Welsh councils have smashed recycling targets a year ahead of schedule. Figures published this week show Wales sent 599,703 tonnes of biodegradable waste to landfill in 2008/09, 24% less than its target for the year, and 16% less than its target for next year. Reaching the landmark ensures Wales won't face financial sanctions when the EU's landfill directive comes into force next year. “These new figures are great news and show how councils ...





September 2, 2009

Solar panels add value to UK homes

by David Masters
Energy

One third of British adults would pay extra for a home kitted out with a renewable energy source, the Energy Saving Trust (EST) revealed today. A poll by the energy advice group found 35% of people in the UK would be willing to pay more for a home where some of their energy supply came from renewable resources such as solar, wind, or hydro-power. Nearly half (49%) of those surveyed said they'd ...





August 27, 2009

Samsung sees “green” as money grubbing opportunity

by David Masters
Money

Samsung is looking to take advantage of eco-conscious phone users by charging a premium for green handsets. A survey by the handset maker found 52% of American consumers would pay more for green products. Over one in five (22%) Americans would pay up to 20% more to salve their conscience of environmental guilt. Environmental concerns now make up almost a third of the most important reasons to buy a new product, the research ...





New, Old, Scottish green town to be built

by Alan Harten

Soon a new town will be built in Scotland to honour the memory of Robert Owen who had a mill in New Lanark from the time period of 1800 to 1835. The town will be called Owenstown and will be home to about 20,000 people. Owen helped his factory workers by installing a coop shop in the small village surrounding the mill and using the profits from the shop to ...





August 26, 2009

Anti-litter campaign collects 50,000 bags of rubbish

by David Masters
Environment

Over 50,000 bags of rubbish have been picked up from Britain's streets in the last 12 months following the launch of the Big Tidy Up campaign. Since the campaign was set up in September last year, nearly 15,000 groups have signed up to carry out a Big Tidy Up. The waste they've collected is enough to fill 714 skips, and would stretch 31 miles if the bags were laid out end-to-end. Natalie Forrester, ...





August 18, 2009

New build homes too small for recycling

by David Masters
Environment

Nearly three-quarters of new build homes in the UK aren't big enough for their occupants to properly recycle waste, research by CABE has discovered. The Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment polled 2,500 private owners of new build homes, of whom 72% said their home does "not have enough space for the three small bins required to recycle properly". Richard Simmons, CABE chief executive, said: "This research brings into question the ...





August 9, 2009

Urban bee hive for your home?

by Alan Harten

Natural England, a conservation agency sponsored by the Government, is attempting to encourage urban livers to experiment with a new kind of furry winged pet: bees. The conversation agency aims to reverse the dwindling bee population by encouraging those with rooftops and balconies to adopt bee hives because they can offer the bees’ easy access to flowers in gardens and parks that are located nearby. Also, the agency claims that ...





July 9, 2009

Dell, HP, and Lenovo still use toxic plastics

by David Masters
Environment

Three of the world's biggest PC makers have failed to meet their own targets for removing toxic plastics from their products by the end of 2009. Hewlett Packard (HP), Dell, and Lenovo have all backtracked on their commitment to remove polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plastic and brominated flame retardants (BFRs) from their computer systems. Their failure was exposed by Greenpeace in its latest 'Guide to Greener Electronics'. “Greenpeace takes voluntary commitments very seriously and ...





July 8, 2009

“Breakthrough ideas” to make Britain sustainable

by David Masters
Sustainability

The Sustainable Development Commission (SDC) has unveiled a list of 'breakthrough ideas' to transform Britain into a sustainable society. The 19 "breakthrough ideas for the 21st century" include free bikes to encourage cycling for journeys under five miles, growing vegetables in public flowerbeds, and giving children 'personal well-being lessons' and more outdoor education. The shortlist was put together from nearly 300 ideas submitted by businesses, academics, sustainability professionals, and the general public. Other ...





June 24, 2009

Expect a £5,000 energy bill in 2020

by David Masters
Energy

UK households could find themselves spending nearly £5,000 per year on energy within a decade, according to new research. A study by uSwitch.com found that the cost of cutting carbon through renewable energy and carbon capture initiatives will cause the average annual energy bill to quadruple from £1,243 to £4,733. The price comparison site found that gas and electricity prices have more than doubled in the last five years, and said it ...





June 15, 2009

Badgers coming to a back garden near you

by Alan Harten

Badgers are starting to pop up in British gardens, which is surprising given that they are normally reclusive nocturnal creatures. A survey of UK homeowners reports that one in ten householders have seen badgers in their gardens noting the popular black and white face popping out in search of food. The survey was organized by RSPB and expected to find that foxes, hedgehogs, and robins would be the main wildlife found in ...





June 5, 2009

Fujitsu’s netbook first to score GreenTech approval

by David Masters

Eco-conscious gadget geeks will be relieved to discover they can finally buy a netbook without feeling guilty. The Fujitsu M2010 is the first mini-laptop to achieve PC Magazine's “GreenTech Approved” award. Most netbooks have a low energy footprint and easily meet energy consumption requirements specified by Energy Star – so they have to be extra special to achieve Greentech status. The M2010's green specialities include energy consumption 30% below the maximum specified by ...





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