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.

AUTUMN STATEMENT

DECC budget slashed
renews, 25 November 2015
DECC’s day to day resource budget has been cut by 22 per cent. Treasury expects managed expenditure on environmental levies, which include the Renewables Obligation, CfDs and feed-in tariffs as well as the carbon reduction commitment, capacity markets and the Warm Homes Discount, to rise from £6.2 billion in 2015-16 to £13.1 billion in 2020-21.

UK climate diplomats face axe after COP21 Paris summit
Climate Home, 25 November 2015
Network of envoys working on low carbon strategies and climate vulnerability in developing countries likely to shrink after Foreign Office cuts.

CLIMATE CHANGE

UN climate talks and the Paris deal: A bluffer’s guide
Climate Home, 11 November 2015
It’s a treaty like no other, that will transform the world economy – if 195 nations can agree at COP21, that is.

Changing Climate, Changing Diets: Pathways to Lower Meat Consumption
Chatham House, 24 November 2015
New report argues that reducing global meat consumption will be critical to keeping global warming below the ‘danger level’ of two degrees Celsius, the main goal of the upcoming climate negotiations in Paris.

Past five-year period was warmest on record due to climate change
Guardian, 25 November 2015
UN weather body says man-made global warming and El Niño oceanic phenomenon made 2011-2015 the warmest five-year period on record.

Why cities are key to success at the Paris climate talks
CityLab, 24 November 2015
Researchers found municipalities are concerned about climate change and many of them have a lot of indirect policies that address it, but there is room for improvement.

Canadian city will put climate change warning stickers on petrol pumps
GOOD, 18 November 2015
North Vancouver’s petrol-nozzle toppers will include a variety of messages designed to encourage behaviour change.

CIRCULAR ECONOMY

Radical Rethink: The Birth of Circular Manufacturing
PR Newswire, 23 November 2015
Capitalising on the significant new business opportunities offered by circular economics can be best realized by developing three key approaches: shifting from asset owning models to service based ones, utilizing the Internet of Things technology to track products and materials, and developing strong Take Back systems.

HP, Tetra Pak win big with the circular economy
GreenBiz, 24 November 2015
Two major companies are using circular economy ideas to boost profits and improve resource efficiency.

RENEWABLE ENERGY AND ENERGY EFFICIENCY

UK coal plants must close by 2025, Amber Rudd announces
Telegraph, 18 November 2015
Energy secretary says it is imperative that Britain builds new gas-fired power plants to replace polluting coal plants, but green groups criticise ‘dash for gas’.

Moroccan solar plant to bring energy to a million people
BBC News, 22 November 2015
A giant plant using energy from the Sun to power a Moroccan city at night will open next month.

How Africa’s fastest solar power project is lighting up Rwanda
Guardian, 23 November 2015
East African plant is completed in less than a year – creating jobs and setting the country on the path to providing half its population with electricity by 2017

Solar power may be cheaper than coal in India by 2020
Quartz, 23 November 2015
Experts suggest renewable energy in Asia’s third-largest economy may become up to 10 per cent cheaper than coal power by the end of the decade.

Eon calls for policy clarity on energy efficiency
Edie.net, 20 November 2015
Big Six suppliers asks government to provide the clarity on how the ECO scheme will proceed after the current obligation period ends in March 2017.


SUSTAINABLE TRANSPORT

Bikeability Cambridge cycling scheme warns of government budget cuts
Cambridge News, 20 November 2015
In cutting funding for cycle infrastructure, the government is effectively reneging on its manifesto commitment to “reduce the number of cyclists and other road users killed or injured on our roads every year”, says CTC.