Pollution

European Union Poised to Increase Recycling
June 6, 2008 09:42 AM - , Worldwatch Institute

The European Union is currently debating waste management targets that could significantly increase recycling rates throughout Europe. Legislators on the European Parliament's Environment Committee overwhelmingly supported reforms earlier this year that would halt the steady rise in the region's garbage. By 2012, waste production would have to stabilize at 2009 levels, the committee recommended.

Toyota develops improved hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle
June 6, 2008 08:49 AM - Reuters

Toyota Motor Corp said on Friday it has developed an advanced fuel-cell vehicle that can run for 830 km (516 miles) on a single tank of hydrogen and in temperatures as low as 30 degrees Celsius below freezing (-22 F). The zero-emission FCHV-adv will be leased to government agencies, among other possible users, in Japan starting later this year, a spokeswoman said.

Mexico City smog hurting people's sense of smell
June 5, 2008 09:18 AM - Reuters

Chronic pollution in Mexico City, which stains the sky yellow and can trigger government warnings to stay indoors, could be killing off residents' sense of smell, scientists say. Tests showed people in Mexico City -- a sprawling metropolis crammed with around 20 million people and 4 million cars -- struggled to sniff out everyday odors like coffee and orange juice compared to residents of a nearby town.

Flying High on Algae - KLM Tests Algae-Based Kerosene for Airplane Fuel
June 5, 2008 09:07 AM - , Triple Pundit

Dovetailing nicely into my post last week about the work GreenFuel is doing with algae and their emissions-to-fuel process, air carrier KLM reported last week their intention to begin testing airplanes that run on an algae-based fuel. In a pilot program with AlgaeLink, a Netherlands-based global manufacturer of algae growing equipment and “earth-to-engine” technology, KLM expects to conduct test flights this fall. AlgaeLink will also open two plants this year in the Netherlands and Spain.

World Environment Day calls for end to CO2 addiction
June 5, 2008 09:03 AM - Reuters

The United Nations urged the world on Thursday to kick an all-consuming addiction to carbon dioxide and said everyone must take steps to fight climate change. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon said global warming was becoming the defining issue of the era and will hurt rich and poor alike.

DOE Taps Manufacturers to Advance Wind Power

The Dept. of Energy joined forces with six major wind turbine makers this week in a bid to grow wind energy production high enough to account for a fifth of total generation by 2030. The DOE and GE, Vestas, Siemens Power Generation, Clipper Turbine Works, Suzlon Energy and Gamesa Corp. signed a memorandum of understanding to advance wind energy manufacturing and address issues such as turbine reliability and standards, site strategies and workforce development.

China builds plant to turn coal into barrels of oil
June 4, 2008 09:36 AM - Reuters

ERDOS, China (Reuters) - With oil prices at historic highs, China is moving full steam ahead with a controversial process to turn its vast coal reserves into barrels of oil. Known as coal-to-liquid (CTL), the process is reviled by environmentalists who say it causes excessive greenhouse gases.

U.K. Committee Supports Personal Carbon Trading
June 4, 2008 09:24 AM - , Worldwatch Institute

A House of Commons committee suggested last week that the U.K. Parliament create a personal carbon-trading scheme for all citizens of the United Kingdom. It was the strongest statement yet by any government in favor of an individual cap-and-trade system for buying and selling greenhouse gas emissions. Personal carbon trading would provide a set "carbon emissions allowance" to each citizen and establish a national carbon budget.

Illegal European scrap dealers cause fierce competition
June 2, 2008 09:12 AM - Reuters

A growing number of illegal scrap yards in Europe endanger the environment and increase competition for valuable scrap metals, European industry sources said on Monday. Record metal prices, with copper hitting an all-time high of $8,880 per tonne earlier this year, have sparked a hunt for secondary raw materials.

OPINION: China’s Wind Power Development Exceeds Expectations
June 2, 2008 08:55 AM - , Worldwatch Institute

A recent boom in Chinese wind power development has surpassed the government's original target and forced policymakers to set a new goal that might still be too modest. In 2007, cumulative wind installations in China exceeded 5 gigawatts (GW), the goal originally set for 2010 by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), China's top economic planner. The Commission had set the target in its 2006 mid- and long-term development plan for renewable energy. The plan's target for 2020 was 30 GW, a level that is now projected to be reached by 2012, eight years ahead of schedule.

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