In this post, Stijn van Ewijk writes about the environmental impact of academic conference travel, options for reducing emissions, and priorities for post-COVID conferencing.
The Journal of Industrial Ecology published our study on the potential for reducing conference travel emissions. We studied the effect of a shift to land transport, a carbon tax, exclusion of long‐distance flyers, multi‐site conferencing, and a virtual conference. Here’s what we found: Read More
(This article first appeared on the UCL ISR website)
Authors from the UCL Institute for Sustainable Resources (ISR) and the UCL Energy Institute (EI) have published a paper in the journal Nature Communications titled ‘Diffusion of flue gas desulfurization reveals barriers and opportunities for carbon capture and storage’.
(The original article was published here by The Conversation.)
Every year, we buy 30 billion tonnes of stuff, from pizza boxes to family homes. We throw out or demolish 13 billion tonnes of it as waste – about 2 tonnes per person. A third of what we discard was bought the same year. The extraction, use and discarding of so much stuff creates a large environmental burden, from the depletion of minerals to the destruction of rainforests.
The article focuses on EU waste legislation and the need to balance between regulating waste for environmental and health protection, and promoting waste prevention through resource cycling. We suggest a new requirement for “recognising use potential” to counterbalance the very restrictive definition of waste. Access the article here.
Last month we published this paper on the limitations of the waste hierarchy for achieving absolute reductions in material throughput in the economy. The waste hierarchy is an established rule of thumb for waste management and prioritizes waste prevention over reuse, recycling, incineration, and landfill. The paper describe the origins of the waste hierarchy and compares its original aims with its current use and implementation. The paper concludes that the hierarchy in itself is not sufficient and instead needs to be used within an overarching framework to achieve dematerialization of the economy. The article was published with Open Access in the Journal for Cleaner Production.