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Tag: waste

UK plan to tackle plastic waste threat

UK plan to tackle plastic waste threat

Science
A four-point plan for tackling plastic waste has been outlined by the Environment Secretary Michael Gove. He told BBC News that he wants to reduce the amount of plastic used in the UK, and to make it simpler for people to recycle. Environmentalists fear Mr Gove will be reluctant to set tighter rules for firms which benefit from the current use of plastics.The Environment Secretary outlined his thoughts during an informal meeting.He says he wants to:Cut the total amount of plastic in circulation. Reduce the number of different plastics in use, because that will help recycling firmsImprove the rate of recycling, which has been slipping recently. And make it easier for individuals to know what goes into the recycling bin and what goes into general rubbish.Reality Check: Are seafood lovers eat...
UN commits to stop ocean plastic waste

UN commits to stop ocean plastic waste

Science
Nations have agreed that the world needs to completely stop plastic waste from entering the oceans.The UN resolution, which is set to be sealed tomorrow, has no timetable and is not legally binding.But ministers at an environment summit in Kenya believe it will set the course for much tougher policies and send a clear signal to business.A stronger motion was rejected after the US would not agree to any specific, internationally agreed goals.Under the proposal, governments would establish an international taskforce to advise on combating what the UN's oceans chief has described as a planetary crisis.Environmentalists say ministers are starting to take plastic waste more seriously, but need to move much more quickly.Li Lin from the green group WWF said: "At last we are seeing some action on ...
Study: More evidence links earthquakes to energy waste wells

Study: More evidence links earthquakes to energy waste wells

Technology
Scientists say they have more evidence that an increase in earthquakes on the Colorado-New Mexico border since 2001 has been caused by wells that inject wastewater from oil and gas production back underground, similar to human-caused quakes in Oklahoma and other states. A paper published last week by researchers at the University of Colorado concluded that the wastewater caused a big enough increase in underground pressure to make rock formations slip along fault lines. "You find that the pressure changes at a given depth are enough to trigger earthquakes," said Jenny Nakai, the paper's lead author and a doctoral student at the university. The paper, published in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, is the latest to link wastewater injection wells to earthquakes. Most oil and...
Waste products, not crops, key to boosting UK biofuels

Waste products, not crops, key to boosting UK biofuels

Science
The UK should focus on using waste products like chip fat if it wants to double production of biofuels according a new study.The report from the says that making fuel from crops like wheat should be restricted.Incentives should be given to farmers to increase production of fuel crops like Miscanthus on marginal land. Even with electric vehicles, biofuels will still be needed for aviation and heavy goods say the authors. While the European Union has mandated that 10% of transport fuels should come from sustainable sources by 2020, these biofuels have been a slow burner in the UK. Suppliers are already blending up to 4.75% of diesel and petrol with greener fuel, but doubling this amount will take up to 10 years say the authors of this new report, that was commissioned by the government. To ...
Raw waste water use on farms is '50% higher' than estimated

Raw waste water use on farms is '50% higher' than estimated

Science
The global use of untreated waste water from cities to irrigate crops is much more widespread than previously estimated, says a new report.According to this updated assessment, nearly 30 million hectares are now using untreated water within 40km of an urban centreSome 800 million people, including farmers, vendors and consumers are said to be exposed to serious health risks.China, India, Pakistan, Mexico and Iran account for most of the treated land.The huge populations in big cities across the developing world make very attractive markets for farmers. The lack of refrigeration and transport means that crops need to be grown close to these consumers. Being close to cities also provides a key element for the crops - plentiful amounts of nutrient-rich waste water."Some might call it sewage, ...