PSI sustainability news round-up

Our fortnightly primer on the latest environment and sustainability news. If you would like to receive this newsletter via email, sign up to our mailing list here.

PSI NEWS
BEIS expert workshop on the consumer benefits of smart meters
On 3 October, PSI’s Dr Kevin Burchell attended a BEIS expert workshop on Smart Metering Consumer Engagement and Benefits. Dr Burchell’s research on smart meters places the idea of energy consumption feedback within a community context.

PSI researchers in CRESS celebratory video
Dr Pete Barbrook-Johnson and Ben Fagan-Watson both make cameo appearances in a 20th anniversary celebratory video for the University of Surrey’s Centre for Research in Social Simulation (CRESS).

PSI at Social Simulation Conference
PSI Research Fellow Dr Pete Barbrook-Johnson attended and presented some of his current work on modelling commons-based peer production at the 13th Annual Conference of the European Social Simulation Association (ESSA). 

TEDDINET Advisory Panel meeting
TEDDINET is a research network dedicated to transforming energy demand through digital innovation. This final advisory meeting, held at the University of Westminster, focused on what the network should aim to achieve over its final 10 months and the ways in which the work of the network might be continued beyond the project period.

CIRCULAR ECONOMY
Government accused of starving councils of cash for recycling plastic

i paper, 9 October 2017
A spending squeeze has forced more than half of councils to cut recycling budgets.

ENERGY
Cost of Energy Review: Insights from UKERC research
UKERC, 9 October 2017
This briefing paper argues that it is important to focus on measures that can reduce the quantity of energy required for a given level of service as well as trends that could help to reduce or moderate prices.

There’s enough wind energy over the oceans to power human civilization, scientists say
Washington Post, 9 October 2017
New research finds there is so much wind energy potential over oceans that it could theoretically be used to power the globe - assuming we are willing and able to cover enormous stretches of the sea with turbines. 

Britain’s switch to low-carbon energy could give a £21bn boost to the economy
The Conversation, 29 September 2017
The authors argue that new markets electricity utilities could access up to £21 billion per year of new value by 2050.

Scottish government bans fracking after public opposition
Guardian, 3 October 2017
Energy minister Paul Wheelhouse says allowing unconventional extraction of coal and gas would put climate goals at risk.

FOOD AND AGRICULTURE
Appetite for Destruction
WWF, October 2017
This report examines the impact of growing crops for livestock feed on the climate, biodiversity, land use and nutrition.

Grazed and confused?
FCRN, October 2017
This new report ‘ruminates’ on cattle, grazing systems, methane, nitrous oxide, the soil carbon sequestration question – and what it all means for greenhouse gas emissions.