Eventually a building comes to the end of its life and is dismantled. Significant resources will have gone into its construction and ongoing maintenance. What can be recovered, reused and recycled? And what waste gets left behind?
Making a positive impact on the environment doesn't always require huge protests and big investments. Students at Western Washington University started a grassroots campaign that's encouraged composting. It's a simple measure seen in most cities in the UK - a separate composting bin is provided for organic waste, which is then collected and turned into compost. The only caution we'd offer is there's a heavy emphasis on disposable coffee cups. Some UK councils have stopped including cardboard in their collections as too much significantly reduces the quality of the compost.
Sustainable housing should have more ‘built-in’ environmental features, report finds – Environment Journal
Relying on the good behaviour of residents isn't enough to ensure long-term sustainability of housing developments, argues research from the University of York. Ensuring there are sufficient transport links, open spaces and embedding renewable energy into a new development should be included as part of planning decisions.
Concern about losing agricultural land to developers is driving opposition moves against a legal notice on the archipelago. They've cited rules restricting who can inherit farms and imposing short time limits on eligibility for Government support as barriers to retaining and growing the farming community.
The German car giant has been rolling out charging stations across the US as part of its plan to make EVs a viable alternative to gas guzzlers. A wide availability of recharging points along key routes is essential to make EVs practical for longer range journeys. While they've used some of their own technology to date, VW has decided to switch to Tesla Powerpacks as the roll-out continues.
Another US city has announced it has exceeded their 2018 goal for renewable energy. Columbia, Ohio, bought more than 15 per cent of its energy from renewable sources as it tracks towards 30 per cent by 2028. Although these numbers may seem modest by some measures, it is a move in the right direction and should stimulate more renewable developments as the market expands.
VietNam's capital city has set modest targets to improve its environmental impacts. The usual suspects are there, such as reducing plastic waste and treating wastewater from industry. Also there is a target of ensuring "80 per cent of residents in communes and wards affected by climate change have basic knowledge about climate change". What this means in practice is unclear, but it seems to point to a mass education or communication programme to raise environmental awareness.
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