Here at Sustainable Life we like to keep up to date with what is going on the in the eco-world, updates, new policies, and innovations. In this blog we thought we would highlight some of the updates we have come across recently to give you a recap of what’s been going on recently.
Innovation – New eco-friendly inventions
Late last year Rolls Royce unveiled its new electric plane at Gloucestershire Airport. Since then a team of expert engineers and designers have been working tirelessly on getting the electric plane -named the ACCEL, ready to take to the skies. The plane will reach speeds of at least 300mph making it the fastest electric aeroplane ever. The plane is being developed as a part of Rolls Royce’s “strategy to champion electrification” and making the massive leap towards electric. The battery capacity will provide enough energy for the plane to travel 200 miles which is enough to take you from London to Paris. And best of all, it is zero-emissions!
Learn more about the ACCEL here.
Winner of the CES Best of Innovation award 2020, Hydraloop is a water recycling system. It will take used water from your shower, wash basins, and the washing machine, then clean, treat and recycled that water for use in your toilet, washing machine or garden. Hydraloop claims to be able to recycle 85% of your household water, reduce more than 45% of your sewage emissions and save on your water bill and your energy consumption. This can be installed in your home, or in commercial buildings regardless of where bathrooms and water outlets are located.
This is a great step forward in making your home eco-friendlier and energy efficient, and an innovation like this had to get a mention in this blog!
Business and Government
A huge milestone was met last month, and Great Britain was officially coal free for over two months! Starting on the 9th April at midnight, England, Scotland, and Wales was powered by gas and renewable energy for 67 days, 22 hours and 55 minutes, smashing records for the longest period Britain had gone without coal.
The stint ended when Drax Power Station in Yorkshire turned on a coal unit for maintenance which then contributed to the National Grid.
Drax will stop using coal to produce energy, making the complete shift to biomass in March of 2021. This is great news for the future of energy use in the UK, the deadline for the elimination of coal powered energy in the UK is October 2024.
Despite the global event not taking place this year as planned, the Tokyo 2020 Olympics deserves a mention for the green approach the committee took to the games.
Uniforms worn by torch bearers, volunteers and other staff will be made from recycled plastic Coca Cola bottles. Medals will be produced from precious metals from recycled technology, and materials to create infrastructure will be dismantled and returned or reused following the games. With this alongside renewable energy to power with the goal of a carbon neutral games and Toyota designing a range of zero-emission vehicles for transporting athletes and spectators around the Olympic parks. The Tokyo Olympic committee have set themselves as sustainability pioneers for future Olympic events.
Impact of COVID – Recovery plan
The topic that has been at the forefront of the news this year is COVID-19. But what has come from the pandemic is a Government “Green Recovery” Plan.
In his economic recovery plan, Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced the “Green Homes Grant Scheme”. This scheme is designed to help people who want to make green additions to their homes, such as double glazing, solar panels, or insulation. The government will provide vouchers up to the cost of £5000 for green home improvements, and in poorer households will provide up to £10,000 for these eco-friendly additions.
With Prime Minister Boris Johnson emphasising the need for the nation to “build, build, build” it came as a worry that maybe it could be to the detriment of the environment and native UK creatures. However, Environment Secretary George Eustice has announced a plan to protect certain species and habitats within the UK to avoid destruction during development. He stated, “We can set out which habitats and species will always be off-limit, so everyone knows where they stand.” Also, “And we can add to that list where we want better protection for species characteristic of our country and critical to our ecosystems” This means that vulnerable British species such as voles and red squirrels will be protected. The Secretary announced a £5m project to find out which animals and habitats require the most protection from this project.