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ANOTHER PLANET

John Vidal has written a scathing damnation of activities of international oil companies in the Niger Delta in Nigeria in the Observer (07.08.11), naming and shaming Shell for polluting what was once a beautiful and productive environment.  You can read more about the destruction of the Ogoni region in “Deep in the delta, the perfect village that died from a tide of oil pollution”  here  http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/aug/06/shell-oil-spills-niger-delta-pollution . News is also breaking that Shell appear to have a leaking oil platform in the North Sea. The Gannet Alpha platform is 112 miles east of Aberdeen. The company did not say how much oil had been spilt.

Torrential rains and floods in North Korea have destroyed at least 4,700 homes in the South Hwanghae province with more than 28,000 people affected according to the Red Cross.

A new film by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, updating British viewers on his Fish Fight against barmy EU fishing policies – and unsustainable overfishing . Its a great campaign and there is a thoughtful article in the Guardian by George Monbiot “EU and fish quotas: who will protect these fish from our feeding frenzy” saying “the EU tells Iceland and the Faroes to stop their fishing frenzy of mackerel, but only because it wants to plunder the stock itself …. more at  http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/aug/08/eu-fishing-quotas-feeding-frenzy .

British designers hope to have a fully electric and partly solar powered ferry operational by late 2012. Southampton based BMT Nigel Gee has won the order for the design of a £25M all electric 150 passenger ferry for the Chinese market. 

Edie.net reports that Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium has announced it is the first stadia in the UK to achieve BS 8901.  It comes less than one year after the stadium decided to improve its sustainability credentials in line with the British Standard.  The stadium now boosts a host of environmental features with a palletised pitch system, with rainwater harvesting below the grass beds,  Infra-red controls fitted to the urinals also stop unnecessary flushing, meters monitor energy and water consumption, new LED lighting and light controls as well as alternative methods of water heating mean boilers can be shut down in summer.  The stadium also promotes public transport on event days. 

Abandoned dogs are going to be kept warmer in a more environmental way after a wood pellet heating system was built at their Dogs Trust home in Shropshire. The kennels will have its heating and hot water powered by a wood pellet boiler. Other new improvements include wall insulation, triple glazing, rainwater harvesting and recycling and solar PV panels on the roof. 

Dragons Den businessman Peter Jones has been criticized after deeming solar energy ‘unaffordable’ on the popular BBC programme. All the other Dragons were impressed and Ploughcroft Solar secured an investment of £100,000 for a 25% equity share in the business from two Dragons, Deborah Meaden and Theo Paphitis

Extra support is being offered to local authorities in Wales by the Welsh Assembly to help them meet ambitious waste and recycling targets. Wales has statutory targets for municipal recycling. The first target is 52% in 2012-13, increasing to 58% by 2015-16, 64% by 2019-20 and 70% by 2019-20. 

Amrik Johal, 53, of Slough has been ordered to ordered to repay more than £800,000 under the Proceeds of Crime Act (2002) and given a two year community sentence after pleading guilty to five charges of causing controlled waste to be kept contrary to Section 33 of the Environment Protection Act 1990 for running the illegal waste dump on his land at Colnbrook Bypass, Colnbrook, Slough. 

Organic Recycling has announced it is planning develop a ‘super waste’ site in Crowland, Lincolnshire, with the capability to treat over 100 different types of waste. The facilities will include anaerobic digestion (AD) plant and biomass boiler, an in-vessel composting facility, a dry recycling transfer station, a water treatment plant, with further concrete areas for windrow composting and a dry recycling facility. 

Plastic bottles left on the London Underground are going to be reprocessed back into food packaging in a recycling drive. Brewer Corrs Moslon have said that they will target  waste and carbon emissions from their four UK plants, hoping to divert all production waste from landfill by 2012.

New Research from LG Refrigeration shows that more than half of UK households chuck away at least 10% of the food they buy – and 20% of us waste more than 25%.  Turn these percentages into cash and you get five billion pounds heading for the bin. Yes, the UK wastes £5 BILLION in food every year. The most wasteful by region are the Northern Irish (30.75%) while the Welsh are seen as the most careful (wasting just 11.63%). Most of all this wasted food will not be going into council food disposal or composting programmes; the rotting food will be heading for landfill sites – another a cost not included here.

Hummer have  launched a ‘green’ car  – the new electric MEV Hummer HX. However, the car only has 60-100 mile driving range and only seats two,  And it isn’t four wheel drive.  But wth a top speed of 45-50mph, you wont be risking to many speeding fines!