IGPN - International Green Purchasing Network


News

Archives

2017
01   02  
2016
01   02   03   04   05   06   07   08   09   10   11   12  
2015
01   02   03   04   05   06   07   08   09   10   11   12  
2014
01   02   03   06   07   08   09   10   11   12  
2013
01   02   03   04   05   06   07   08   09   10   11  
2012
01   02   03   04   05   06   07   08   09   10   11   12  
2011
01   02   03   04   05   06   07   08   09   10   11   12  
2010
01   02   03   04   05   07   08   09   10   11   12  
2009
01   02   03   05   06   07   08   10   11   12  
2008
01   03   04   07   08   09   10   11   12  
2007
02   03   04   05   06   07   08   09   10  
2006
02   03   04   05   06   07   08   09   10   11   12  
2005
06   07   09   10   11  

Categories

News Archives

May 22, 2013

Defra hosts waste industry growth summit

Defra will today seek to bring together investors, bankers, entrepreneurs and waste management firms at a “growth summit” designed to help identify how to accelerate investment in the waste, recycling, and resource management industry.

Hosted by Environment Secretary Owen Paterson, the meeting is designed to explore how government and industry can build on the recent success of the waste sector, which has recorded growth rates of between three and four percent throughout the economic downturn. The industry is now worth £12bn a year and employs over 100,000 people, and Paterson said he was keen to attract to more investment to a sector that is not only critical to meeting the UK’s various environmental target but also offers significant export opportunities.

“There is a huge global market in waste and recycling and I want to see UK businesses leading the way on this,” he said in a statement. “Dealing with waste and recycling properly is good for business as well as the environment and has the potential to boost economic growth and create jobs. To make it happen I want to break down the barriers businesses face to ensure they can compete and lead in the global race.”

The UK has delivered drastic improvements in its recycling rates over the past decade, but there is evidence that progress has stalled in recent years, as well as concerns that over £5bn worth of recyclable materials are exported each year, primarily as a result of a shortage of recycling capacity in the UK.

Read more at Business Green.

...continue to read

category : Topics

May 21, 2013

Australian researchers hail printable solar cells breakthrough

Scientists in Australia have drastically scaled up the size of printed solar cells, potentially paving the way for the renewable energy technology to be rolled out across a multitude of buildings and every day technologies, from windows to laptops.

The Victorian Organic Solar Cell Consortium, a collaboration between the University of Melbourne, Monash University and a number of industry partners, announced late last week that they had printed A3 sized solar cells, 10 times the size of their previous efforts.

The achievement was made possible by a new printer installed at Australia’s national science agency, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial research Organisation (CSIRO). Three years ago, they were only able to print solar cells the size of a fingernail, but the new printer has allowed them to produce cells that are 30 centimeters wide.

CSIRO materials scientist Dr. Scott Watkins said the printer technology could represent a major breakthrough for the solar industry, resulting in a host of new applications for solar cells and also raising the prospect of boosting the efficiency of existing silicon-based solar panels. With the ability to print at speeds up to ten meters per minute, the team reckons they could produce on cell every two seconds, drastically reducing the cost of solar cell manufacturing.

Read more at Business Green.

...continue to read

category : Topics

May 21, 2013

Kroger to power distribution center with spoiled food

Kroger has come up with a solution that will put a dent in the food waste generated by the supermarket chain ? it will turn it into biogas energy that powers a distribution center.

Kroger is the biggest supermarket chain in the U.S. with 2,400 supermarkets in 31 states. Any food that can’t be sold or donated will help power its 650,000-square-foot Ralphs/Food 4 Less distribution center in Compton, California.

An anaerobic digester will process more than 55,000 tons of food waste a year, about 150 tons a day, providing 20 percent of the facility’s energy. And it will use 150 zero emission fuel cell forklifts to do the job. The system will also reduce truck trips by more than 500,000 miles each year. Rather than making special trips to haul food waste to landfills or waste-to-energy plants, the biodigester will be on-site. The same trucks that deliver food to supermarkets from the distribution center will make their return trip with food waste from supermarkets.

Kroger’s biogas system is designed and operated by Boston-based FEED Resource Recovery, Inc., which has developed a closed-loop, zero waste solution for the food industry.

Kroger says its investment in the biogas digester will be paid back within five years and an 18.5 percent return on investment. It’s considering adding biogas to other distribution sites.

Read more at GreenBiz.

...continue to read

category : Topics

May 20, 2013

Hong Kong launches first electric taxis

Hong Kong saw its first electric taxis hit the streets on Saturday in a step towards reducing the city’s high levels of roadside pollution. The cars have been rented by the Hong Kong Taxi and Public Light Bus Association, which is testing them over the next six months.

The 45 bright red cars were launched by Chinese electric vehicle producer BYD, which is partly backed by US investment titan Warren Buffett. Called the BYD e6, the five-door crossover sedans are powered by iron phosphate batteries and take two hours to charge, a statement from BYD said, adding that they can then travel for 300 kilometers (more than 180 miles).

“The idea of being environmentally friendly is a global trend and the electric car is one good example,” said Wong Chung Keung, President and Chairman of the association. “An electric car saves the cost of fuel and will allow our taxi drivers to earn more,” he added, saying that a normal taxi would cost HK$0.8 to run per kilometer while an electric car would cost HK$0.2 ? HK$0.3.

Hong Kong’s Financial Secretary John Tsang was quoted in a BYD statement as welcoming the electric car and saying he was committed to “promoting environmental sustainability by laying the foundation for Hong Kong to become a zero emissions city.”

Read more at Eco Business.

...continue to read

category : Topics

May 16, 2013

New Singapore project first to replace more greenery than is lost

A new project, Jem, in Singapore has become the first mixed-use development project to achieve the Singapore Building Construction Authority (BCA) Green Mark Platinum Award rating for its eco-friendly features and for replacing lost landscape by 122 percent.

The mall and office tower, located at the Jurong Lake District, is a 19,124 square meters development designed by SAA Architects, one of the leading architectural firms in Southeast Asia with several Green Mark Awards in its belt.

The designers recognized the project’s sheer size and aimed to address its urban impact on the local community by applying a landscape replacement strategy. It is also a policy promoted by Singapore’s Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) with the following objectives: to enhance the quality of life through greenery and spaces of relief; to create a distinctive image of the city in the tropics; and, to help environmental benefits like air quality improvement and urban island heat mitigation.

In the case of Jem, the greenery lost due to its development, as well as its carbon footprint, was replaced with abundant skyrise greenery and landscape areas within the complex. Being a Green Mark Platinum Awardee, Jem is expected to minimize energy consumption equivalent to energy generated about 2,400 HDB apartments annually.

Read more at Eco Business.

...continue to read

category : Topics

May 16, 2013

Plasticity Forum: Adidas and others find gold in plastic

The issue of plastic waste has grown too large to ignore. As of 2013, 40 percent of the world’s oceans surfaces were covered with floating plastic garbage of some sort, according to the Center for Biological Diversity.

Instead of burying their heads in the sand, companies, nonprofits and governments are beginning to not only address the issue but also the benefits from doing so. An international forum next month will bring these stakeholders together and highlight solution-driven thinking about plastic waste, while promoting the material’s vast, untapped opportunity.

By harnessing plastic waste streams, several brand leaders already have enjoyed substantial savings, while others are reaping lucrative rewards. Major apparel brands, such as Adidas and Hagger, are winning the hearts of Gen Y consumers by weaving post-consumer plastic bottles into selected garments. Newer brands such as Rethink, modeled their entire business model on the recycled plastic waste concept.

Closing the plastic loop has also been found to yield significant benefits. Consumer goods behemoth Unilever has realized savings to the tune of more than $256 million from efficient use of materials and plastic waste capture since 2008.

The Ocean Recovery Alliance is hosting its second annual Plasticity Forum on June 6 in Hong Kong to accelerate uptake of the sustainable plastics concept. Conventional plastics and bioplastics manufacturers, sustainable packaging and green branding gurus, waste management practitioners, NGOs, think tanks and government agencies will share at the event progressive thinking on new ways to harness plastic, both pre- and post-consumption. Discussions will focus on design, packaging, materials, innovations, re-use and waste reduction.

Read more at GreenBiz.

...continue to read

category : Topics

May 14, 2013

Shanghai companies enjoy recycled water on tap

Shanghai is promoting the sale of recycled water among corporations as a way to save the resource.

In one trial project, Shanghai Shenmei Beverage & Food Co. Ltd., the local producer of Coca-Cola, will pump its reclaimed water from its factory in the Pudong New Area to Sharp China, which is in the same industrial park.

According to the Shanghai Water Authority, Shenmei’s reclaimed water was produced after purifying the water used to wash beverage bottles. It will be used to flush toilets or as cooling water for Sharp’s air-conditioners. “Reclaimed water is treated wastewater,” said Gui Yi, an official with the water authority, adding that it can be used in landscaping irrigation, to flush toilets and clean streets, or as cooling water for factories rather than flushing it into rivers.”

Shenmei produces about 2,000 cubic meters of reclaimed water every day, and with the new system, 250 cubic meters will be piped to Sharp China. Sharp will pay Shenmei about 50 percent of the tap water price.

“It’s a win-win situation,” Gui said. “For Shenmei, the money can be used to maintain the pipes and pumping system while Sharp reduces its water bill.”

Gu said the system could help the city save 30,000 cubic meters of tap water per year. Of the trial goes well, the plan is to duplicate it at more industrial parks across the city.

Read more at CleanBiz Asia.

...continue to read

category : Topics

May 8, 2013

UN: Greening trade can spur sustainable development

Sustainable goods and services offer developing countries new commercial opportunities that can help drive sustainable development though the “greening” of global trade, according to a major new UN report.

The new report from the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) acknowledges that international trade has played a key role in creating economic growth and helping eradicate poverty. But it also details how increasing trade volumes have put huge stresses on natural resources, land, oceans and biodiversity, while also leading to increased greenhouse gas emissions.

It argues that developing countries, particularly the group of least developed countries, still depend heavily on natural resource-based products and raw materials for their exports. But it also identifies “significant and real opportunities” for developing nations with abundant renewable resources to diversify their economies and position themselves to benefit from growing global demand for green goods and services. Along with agriculture and renewable energy, the report concludes that tourism, forestry, manufacturing and fisheries also offer promising markets for developing countries, which are well-placed to catalyze a move to more sustainable international trade.

“Transitioning to a green economy can facilitate new trade opportunities which in turn will help to make global trade more sustainable,” said Achim Steiner, UN Under-Secretary General and UNEP Executive Director.

Read more at BusinessGreen.

...continue to read

category : Topics

May 8, 2013

A second life for rice husk

The rice husk (or hull) is the outermost layer of the paddy grain that is separated from the rice grain during the milling process. Around 20 percent of paddy weight is husk and rice production in Asia produces about 770 million tons of husk annually.

Rice husk was largely considered a waste product that was often burned or dumped on landfills, according to Martin Gummert, postharvest expert at the International Rice Research Institute. “In Vietnam, it used to be a waste some years ago and was dumped in the rivers, causing a big problem, but now it has value,” Mr. Gummert said. “In fact, in most countries, rice husk is not waste anymore.” Some enterprising companies are turning it into various products not only for eco-conscious market place but also for the industrial sector.

India, one of the biggest rice producers in the world, not surprisingly, also produces vast amounts of rice husk. For Mr. Gyanesh Pandey, an engineer and co-founder and CEO of Husk Power Systems (HPS), this was an inexpensive energy source to light up villages outside India’s industrial power grid. HPS is a rural empowerment enterprise that designs, installs, and operates mini power plants using a biomass gasification technology he co-developed. The mini power plants, operated by local villagers trained by HPS, can generate from 25 kW to 10 kW of electricity.

Another company is bringing rice husk back to the dining table, not as food but as the main material for producing disposable chopsticks. Algan Technology, a company that specializes in reusing waste products and by-products, has developed a new material that contains 90 percent rice husk and only 10 percent resin. This nontoxic material, called SOLIT RICEIT, can be used for manufacturing reusable and disposable chopsticks without cutting down a single tree.

Read more at Eco Business.

...continue to read

category : Topics

May 6, 2013

Breakthrough in solar efficiency by UNSW team ahead of its time

Australian scientists have found a way of hugely increasing the efficiency of solar panels while substantially reducing their cost. The University of New South Wales researchers have come up with improvements in photovoltaic panel design that had not been expected for another decade. The breakthrough involves using hydrogen atoms to counter defects in silicon cells used in solar panels. As a consequence, poor quality silicon can be made to perform like high quality wafers.

The process makes cheap silicon “actually better than the best-quality material people are using at the moment”, the head of the university’s photovoltaic center of excellence, Professor Stuart Wenham, said. Silicon wafers account for more than half the cost of making a solar cell. “By using low quality silicon, you can drastically reduce that cost.”

At present, the best commercial solar cells convert between 17 to 19 percent of the sun’s energy into electricity. UNSW’s technique, patented this year, should produce efficiencies of between 21 and 23 percent.

Read more at The Sydney Morning Herald.

...continue to read

category : Topics

May 3, 2013

Pollution fears as ban on plastic foam items lifted

The end of a 14-year ban on the sale and use of disposable food containers made of plastic foam has sparked concerns over pollution and potential health risks. The time was right for the ban to end, the National Development and Reform Commission said, as plastic foam could now be recycled to become raw materials in construction, paints and stationery.

A decision to ban plastic foam dinnerware was imposed in 1999 over environmental pollution concerns. The lifting of the ban on Wednesday has not met with universal approval.

Dong Jinshi, deputy general secretary of the Beijing Society for Environmental Sciences, said a recycling system had not yet been established and it was more dangerous to use such products today as many companies were using waste plastic to make dinnerware.

“There are no authorities supervising the issue, and there is a legal vacuum,” Dong said.

Read more at Eco Business.

...continue to read

category : Topics


Focus on

Information

IGPN Events