Roundup – World Environment News (1st October, 2017)

EasyJet could soon be the world’s first eco-friendly airline

The airline industry accounts for 1.3% of global emissions and has not been included in the Paris Agreement. This is a welcome step and among the first of it’s kind in an industry that has largely skirted the issue of emission reductions. In order to create electric engines that cut emissions, reduce noise pollution, and  lower costs, EasyJet has teamed up with the American start-up Wright Electric. These battery-propelled planes could be half as noisy and 10 percent cheaper than those that require jet fuel, and could begin shuttling passengers on flights shorter than two hours within a decade.

https://psmag.com/environment/easyjet-could-soon-be-flying-fuel-free

 

Kenyans become innovative in face of plastic ban

It has been a month since Kenya introduced an all-out ban on plastic bags. This ban was one of the most ambitious plastic ban steps till date, given that Kenya handed out 100 million plastic bags every single year. The steps include fines ranging from $19,000 to $38,000, with possible four-year jail terms. All travelers are required to leave their plastic bags at the airport and residents are encouraged to drop off old bags at local grocery stores for collection. While this is a tough adjustment, especially for small businesses and stores, many Kenyans have found innovating eco-friendly ways to deal with the gap created by removing plastic.  Some supermarket chains are offering cloth bags (which can be reused) Market sellers are tying strings around vegetables, wrapping items in banana leaves, and delivering food in spare shoe boxes and other containers.

More power to Kenya for leading the way.

https://www.treehugger.com/environmental-policy/kenya-adjusts-life-without-plastic-bags.html

 

Wetherspoons says no to straws

Major pub chain Wethershpoon will be banning plastic straws across all of its considerable 900 outlets starting January 2018 in a bid to become more ecofriendly. Plastic straws will be replaced with biodegradable paper straws and drinks will no longer come with straws but they will be available for customers on request.

http://www.somersetlive.co.uk/whats-on/food-drink/wetherspoons-ban-plastic-straws-favour-547676

 

London air worsens, Mayor sounds emergency warning

Sadiq Khan, has triggered the capital’s emergency air quality alert as polluted air from the continent combines with toxic air in London creating dangerous levels of pollution. The alerts will prominently display warnings at bus stops, road signs and on the underground.

TV and radio stations across London have also been requested to warn viewers and listeners in news bulletins. This alert has been triggered by “high” levels of air pollution. This is the 7th time in 13 months.

Khan said: “The shocking and illegal state of London’s filthy air means once again I am triggering a high air pollution alert today under my new comprehensive alert system.

Khan has also started to introduce measures to reduce pollution by targeting leading emission sources like wood ovens, construction equipment and road vehicles.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/sep/29/air-pollution-sadiq-khan-calls-for-ban-on-wood-burning-stoves

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/sep/27/london-issues-red-alert-for-extremely-high-air-pollution

 

Taiwan, Chile and Mumbai in bids to go plastic free

Governments of Taiwan, Chile and Mumbai are taking steps to reduce the use of plastic. Read more here.

Chile – https://www.bna.com/chiles-plastics-industry-n73014467358/

Mumbai – http://www.dnaindia.com/mumbai/report-shiv-sena-pushes-for-complete-ban-on-plastic-in-city-2548649

Taiwan – http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/front/archives/2017/10/02/2003679553

 

Bad news as Trump reverses National Park Ban

A US national park service study found that the ban on bottled water in 23 national parks prevented up to 2 million plastic bottles from being used and discarded every year. That is equivalent to up to 326 barrels of oil worth of emissions, 419 cubic yards of landfill space and 111,743lb of plastic, according to the May study.

Despite that, the Trump administration reversed the bottled water ban just three months later, a decision that horrified conservationists and pleased the bottled water industry.

Read more here –

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/sep/26/national-park-plastics-bottled-water-ban

 

500 kg of trash collected from Singaporean waterways

About 500kg of rubbish was collected by about 100 volunteers, comprising students and members of the public, who ventured out in groups on kayaks to collect trash between Sembawang Beach and Seletar Island. Children’s toys, food wrappers, plastic containers, water bottles and even motorcycle helmets. These are some of the trash collected during a three-hour clean-up of Singapore’s waters on Saturday (Sept 30) morning.

See more here –

https://youtu.be/OUBKZrQKUkE

http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/environment/500kg-of-trash-collected-in-event-to-tackle-litter-in-waterways

 

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