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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 ...





August 30, 2009

UN puts a figure on Global Warming costs

by Alan Harten
Money

In the past the United Nations has said that in order to pay for sea defences, damage to infrastructure, and deaths from global warming that will occur by 2030 it would cost anywhere from £25b to £105b. The news appears to be more grim however as a study released by the Gratham Institute for Climate Change at Imperial College London and International Institute for Environment and Development now estimates ...





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 ...





August 4, 2009

UK coins minted from unethical metals

by David Masters
Environment Money

The copper and nickel used to mint British coins is sourced from environmentally destructive mines, a MailOnline investigation has uncovered. Raw materials used by the government-owned Royal Mint have been linked to water shortages and hazardous pollution in Chile, and rainforest destruction in Madagascar. The revelation comes despite a commitment from the Mint to "only select suppliers that use environmentally balanced practices". The Royal Mint casts 20,000 tons of copper and nickel alloys ...





August 1, 2009

Beautiful countryside vital for environment and economy

by David Masters
Environment Money

Northern Ireland's beautiful countryside is as vital for the country's economy as it is for its environment. Edwin Poots, Northern Ireland's Environment Minister, said the tourism attracted to the country by its Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) makes them a crucial resource. Poots made the claim as he opened the 11th Conference of the National Association of AONB. “Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty not only bring enjoyment and enhance ...





July 10, 2009

Carbon focused eco-businesses risk wasted opportunities

by David Masters
Employment Money

The government's narrow focus on reducing carbon emissions could cause Britain to miss out on becoming a world leader in environmental commerce, an industry body has warned. A report published this week by the Environmental Industries Commission outlines how UK industry can best take advantage of the £3 trillion global market for low-carbon goods and services. EIC policy director Danny Stevens said the government's narrow vision for eco-friendly business "risks putting the ...





Accountants back sustainability audits

by David Masters
Sustainability Money

Accountancy firms around the world have backed Prince Charles's proposals to audit the social and environmental impacts of businesses alongside their finances. Sixteen professional bodies signed up to the five principles outlined in the Prince of Wales's Accounting for Sustainability (A4S) Forum. It is the first time that an international group of accountancy firms have publicly affirmed sustainability guidelines. By signing up to the principles, the participating bodies aim to bring sustainability to ...





July 4, 2009

Eco-campaigners sue government over RBS investment

by David Masters
Environment Money

A coalition of eco-campaigners are suing the government for giving billions of pounds to "dirty and destructive projects" through its investment in the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS). Platform, People & Planet, and the World Development Movement claim that through its recapitalisation of RBS the government is allowing taxpayer funds to be invested in human rights violations and heavily polluting energy companies. "RBS has the worst record by far of any UK ...





June 21, 2009

Renewable energy start-up seeks £10m investment

by David Masters
Energy Money

A new eco-friendly energy supplier is currently looking to raise £10 million from investors. Greenrock Energy Limited plans to become an industry leader across Europe in ground source heat pump (GSHP) systems. GSHP energy is a highly efficient technology, using the solar energy stored just below the earth's surface to heat buildings. It can also be used to cool buildings by sending heat back underground. GSHP systems typically produce up to 6.5 ...





June 15, 2009

Eco-design would save £900m

by David Masters
Money

British businesses could save £900 million by incorporating eco-design into their products, a government department said today. Defra announced the potential savings as it launched a consultation today on the best ways to implement minimum energy standards and energy labelling for high street products such as washing machines, televisions, and fridges. “[Energy] standards can save our economy so much money and can save millions of tonnes of CO2 from going into the ...





May 27, 2009

Two zoos go Knuts over polar bear ownership

by Alan Harten
Money

An unlikely candidate is involved in a Berlin custody dispute - three year old Knut, a polar bear who currently lives in the Berlin Zoo but is technically owned by the Neumunster zoo. A Berlin judge has now ordered the two zoos to resolve the ownership rights to the bear. Knut is at the centre of the battle due to the fact he has generated approximately €10m in entrance fees and merchandise. The ...





May 18, 2009

Big cash injection for green US schools

by Alan Harten
Money

The United States passed a school modernisation bill last Friday in the House of Representatives, that set aside $6.4 billion for updating school buildings to make them more energy efficient and eco friendly. The piece of legislation also aims to place money into school construction in an effort to create jobs for the needed repairs, and to help combat global warming by placing more clean energy jobs into the market. The Bill ...





May 15, 2009

Huge UK lawsuit over toxic dumping in Africa

by Alan Harten
Money

The largest group lawsuit in British history is in the process of being prosecuted, with over 30,000 people from the Ivory Coast claiming that toxic waste from the oil trading company, Trafigura, was dumped into the coastal areas of the country. The lawsuit targets toxic waste that was chartered aboard the Probo Koala ship and billed as cargo by Trafigura and taken to the Ivory Coast, which incidentally is one of ...





May 13, 2009

Alaska gold company huge pollution fine

by Alan Harten
Money

Nova Gold Resources, an Alaskan Gold Company has reached a settlement with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as a result of its failure to follow proper environmental procedures when discharging water from its mine located near Nome, Alaska. The companies violated the terms of their building permit to construct the Rock Creek Mine in Alaska when they discharged storm water into three nearby creeks, Rock Creek, Glacier Creek, and ...





Britain takes Falkland’s seabed dispute to UN

by Alan Harten
Money

On Monday the United Kingdom placed a claim on the area around the Falkland Islands with the United Nations, in an effort to secure the oil, gas, and mineral reserves of the seabed area. This is expected to spur a fight with Argentina, which feels the area belongs to its government, specifically the area around the Falkland Islands, the South Sandwich Islands, and South Georgia which is approximately 1.2 million sq ...





May 7, 2009

Women happier than men, but both obsessed with money

by David Masters
Money

Women in the UK are happier than men, according to new research released this week. A poll by Internet bank 'smile' found that 64% of British women consider themselves 'truly happy' compared to just 59% of men. Men also said they'd need more money to be happy, with the average male respondent saying they'd need £1.25 million to fill their life with joy. By contrast, women would settle for £980,000. However, it would appear ...





April 29, 2009

US move to tax plastic bags out of existence

by Alan Harten
Money

Plastic bags at the supermarket may soon be a thing of the past in the United States, if the initiative known as the Plastic Bag Reduction Act passes in the United States Congress. Introduced on April 22nd by US Rep Jim Moran, the act imposes a five cent tax on all single use carrier and other plastic bags from supermarkets, convenience stores, takeout bags, and all other retail bags. The tax is ...





Cash for acid ocean research

by Alan Harten
Money

Among the many environmental concerns facing the earth today, according to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and the Natural Environment Research Council, is ocean acidification. As results of research that shows oceans are becoming more acidic due to increased CO2 emissions from humans, the UK Government has initiated an £11 million program to study how to decrease emissions and what the direct effect of CO2 on the oceans ...





April 27, 2009

Shell shells out $5.8 million in pollution claim

by Alan Harten
Money

Royal Dutch Shell reached a landmark settlement in court on Thursday, in the city of Houston, Texas, that requires the oil company to reduce air pollutant emissions by 80% in three years, upgrade the chemical processing units at its factory, and pay a fine of $5.8 million US dollars for its blatant air pollution. The refinery involved in the lawsuit with several environmental groups is located in Deer Park, Texas near ...





Breastfeeding reduces heart attack risk for mothers

by David Masters
Money

Mothers who breastfeed are less likely to suffer from a heart attack, heart disease, or a stroke in later life, according to new research published this week. A study at University of Pittsburgh found that women who had breastfed for more than a year were 10% less likely to develop these conditions that women who had never breastfed. Mothers who breastfed for at least a month were found to have reduced risk ...





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