All posts tagged: Greenhouse gas emissions

Concrete without CO2: can our biggest building material go green? – podcast | Science

Concrete without CO2: can our biggest building material go green? – podcast | Science

Concrete is strong and durable – which is why it’s the basis for so much of our infrastructure. It’s also terrible for the planet, due to one key ingredient: cement, which is responsible for almost 90% of concrete emissions. Researchers have now found a way to recover old cement while also reducing the environmental impact of recycling steel. Madeleine Finlay speaks to Julian Allwood, professor of engineering and the environment at the University Of Cambridge, to find out how the process works, and what it could mean for the emissions generated by the construction industry How to listen to podcasts: everything you need to know Source link

Plastic pollution treaty would be ‘failure’ without tackling emissions

Plastic pollution treaty would be ‘failure’ without tackling emissions

People took part in a rally in Ottawa to support ending plastic pollution Canadian Press/Shutterstock Delegates from nearly every country are gathered in Canada to hammer out the details of a global treaty to address ballooning plastic pollution. One source of division at the summit, which concluded 29 April, was how to address the greenhouse gas emissions generated by producing and using plastic, a growing and under-recognised driver of climate change. “When people think about plastic, they think about what they see visually,” says Alice Zhu at the University of Toronto in Canada. But extracting and processing the fossil fuels and other chemicals used to make plastic produces substantial greenhouse gas emissions, as does generating the energy required to make plastic products. Plastic now accounts for around 10 per cent of total demand for oil and natural gas; coal is also increasingly used to power plastic production. Incinerating plastic waste is another source of greenhouse gas emissions. As it degrades, plastic in the environment can also produce carbon dioxide and methane emissions. Plastic may even …

The incredible new tech that can recycle all plastics, forever

The incredible new tech that can recycle all plastics, forever

Satakorn Sukontakajonkul/Alamy I spend an inordinate amount of time in my kitchen scrutinising pieces of plastic, trying to discern whether they are recyclable or not. If they are, they go into a bag alongside glass, cans, cardboard and paper. If not, or if I am unsure, I put them in a plastic bag (non-recyclable) and shove it into the cupboard under the stairs. My intention is to deposit it in a container for non-recyclable plastics in a nearby supermarket. But the road to landfill is paved with good intentions. Sometimes I get exasperated and just end up chucking it. Whether my obsessive sorting actually makes any difference, I don’t know. I hope the recyclables do end up being recycled. As for the other stuff, which makes up about half of my plastic waste, I have no idea of its fate. I presume it is called “non-recyclable” for a reason. Hopefully, I soon won’t have to waste any more of my precious time triaging this type of waste. A suite of “advanced recycling” technologies is gradually …

Trading Russia for America – POLITICO

Trading Russia for America – POLITICO

However, he added, the priority should now be replacing gas with renewables: “We don’t want really this business. Our business is to have clean energy here in Spain and also in Europe.” Nicolás González Casares, an MEP from Spain’s governing Socialist party says the priority should now be replacing gas with renewables. | Ander Gillenea/AFP via Getty Images Industry representatives caution against leaving fossil fuels behind too quickly. They insist that even under the EU’s gas reduction plans, there is still a need to secure extra LNG supplies, particularly given the pressure to divest from Moscow’s exports.  Narek Terzian, a spokesperson for the International Association of Oil and Gas Producers, pointed to a “gap between projected demand” under the EU’s current forecasts “and the actual supply that we know of, if you take out Russia.” “That’s the supply gap to be bridged,” Terzian argued. “And so it is extremely important that Europe be able to secure the necessary volumes from the U.S.”  The numbers paint a mixed picture. European gas demand hit a record low …

Why we must de-risk and embrace regenerative farming

Why we must de-risk and embrace regenerative farming

Over the past few years, the EU has been at the forefront of the fight against climate change and pushing for sustainability across all its policies. As president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen set the tone by presenting in her political guidelines for 2019-2024 the main pillar of the EU’s work during her mandate: the European Green Deal. The goal was simple, yet challenging: To make Europe the first ever climate-neutral continent by 2050. Five years later, although a vast majority of the work has been delivered, we are still awaiting some crucial initiatives on agriculture and environment. Understandably, the Covid crisis and recent geopolitical events have shifted the focus of the European Commission and the EU member countries toward competitiveness, economic recovery, defense, and EU enlargement. However, green priorities should be a vital part of all policies put forward by the EU, a complementary piece to the wider policy puzzle. This year is marked by the European elections and the new mandate of the European Commission. The political momentum is strong …

Methane leaks from US oil and gas are triple government estimates

Methane leaks from US oil and gas are triple government estimates

A methane plume in California detected by an airborne spectrometer NASA/JPL-Caltech Major oil and gas-producing regions in the US are leaking much more methane than current estimates suggest, according to nearly a million aerial measurements of the potent greenhouse gas. “Our study used the largest such dataset that’s ever been assembled,” says Evan Sherwin at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California, who conducted the research while at Stanford University. He and his colleagues combined data from numerous aerial surveys that used infrared sensors to measure methane leaking from wells, pipelines… Source link

How cruise ships became a catastrophe for the planet – video | Environment

How cruise ships became a catastrophe for the planet – video | Environment

Cruising is booming – 2023 ticket sales have surpassed historic levels and 2024 has seen the launch of the largest cruise ship ever built. But as cruise tourism’s popularity has increased, so have the pollution problems it brings. To customers, it may not be evident that any problems exist, since some cruise line companies claim to be becoming more climate-friendly. But the truth can be quite different. Josh Toussaint-Strauss interrogates what impact the world’s biggest ships are having on the planet Source link

Satellite launched to track down leaks of potent greenhouse gas

Satellite launched to track down leaks of potent greenhouse gas

An artist’s impression of MethaneSAT Environmental Defense Fund/NASA A satellite expected to transform our view of planet-warming methane emissions from oil and gas production has launched from the Vandenburg Space Force Base in California. Called MethaneSAT, the satellite will orbit the planet 15 times per day, using infrared sensors to measure methane leaking from all of the world’s major production centres. “We designed MethaneSAT explicitly to serve one goal,” says Steven Hamburg at the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), the non-profit advocacy group that developed the satellite along with a consortium of universities and aerospace firms. “To produce policy-relevant data to track methane emissions from the oil and gas industry, globally.” Methane is the most significant greenhouse gas behind carbon dioxide. And oil, gas and coal production are among the largest sources of anthropogenic methane emissions. Many governments have set targets to slash methane emissions by 30 per cent by 2030, and at the COP28 climate summit last year, a number of large oil and gas companies pledged to zero out all methane emissions from their operations by …