Global to Local Newsletter - 
30 January 2015
Read the Jan - Feb issue of eg magazine


European funded projects bring lots of benefits - and not only for the project partners. They leave a legacy of research, case studies and good practice which is freely available to everyone.


We report on three examples in this issue:


  • REBus - the advancement of resource efficient business

  • POSSE - Open Specifications and Standards for Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) as applied to urban road traffic management.

  • IFORE - Eco-retrofitting for social housing


Also we look at the work of the Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) in helping businesses get their circular economy vision off the ground.




Global Calculator shows how the world can 'prosper' while tackling climate change

The world's population could live a prosperous, European-style lifestyle by 2050 at the same time as avoiding dangerous climate change, according to a new Global Calculator developed by the UK's Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC).


The online tool shows how global prosperity can increase, even as emissions fall by 60 per cent from current levels in line with climate targets. This feat, according to the calculator, would require a series of  massive changes to how we use energy, such as a shift from fossil fuels towards nuclear and renewables, and much wider use of electric heat and transport. 


Anyone can use the web-based Global Calculator tool to model the world in 2050, by making a series of choices about lifestyle (such as diet and appliance use), transport, buildings, industry, land use and energy. The tool then shows whether these choices are consistent with meeting the internationally agreed target to  limit warming to two degrees above pre-industrial temperatures.


Paris mayor calls for diesel ban by 2020
The Mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, wants to ban diesel cars in the French capital by 2020 and create pedestrianised areas in the city centre to tackle pollution. In an interview with the Journal du Dimanche, Ms Hidalgo also hinted of  a 'very ambitious' € 100m cross-city cycling network that would double the amount of bicycle lanes and integrate electric bikes into the city bike rental scheme. 
Six sustainable transport systems for 21st century has delved into six transport ideas that take us beyond the internal combustion engine and into the 21st century. They are:
  • Elon Musk's 'Hyperloop' 
  • Maglev trains
  • Velomobile 
  • Algae-powered Airship
  • Solar roads
  • Wirelessly-charged buses

Read more:
Recycled glass transformed into construction
material for wall coverings

Landfill waste - glass and plastic - is the main component of a new low C02 wall board material, recycled glass hybrid (RGH) for sustainable construction.


It consists of the crushed glass recycled almost to dust that usually goes to landfill. By combining RGH with recycled plastic the UK firm C2M has created a material that can be formed into numerous products including wall boards. These can be used in the building industry to replace the far more eco-wasteful gypsum-based boards, and have the added benefit that they can be ground down and used again. The boards are 50 times greener to manufacture than gypsum-based boards, the company says, and uses just 238 grams of carbon in its manufacture compared to 12 kilos for the gypsum.


The new material already has 43 applications, from wall boards to roof tiles to concrete plinth under graveyard headstones. The process will be available internationally by 2016.

The impacts of large-scale Concentrated Solar Power on the local environment

Construction of Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) plants - electricity generation which concentrates sunlight to generate heat - can have a range of negative effects on wildlife, but these effects are short lived, new research has found. Once in use, CSP plants can even have some positive effects, reducing soil erosion, for instance.
Successful Solar Crowfunding Scheme
A project to site 749 solar panels on social housing in Berwickshire is the most effective crowdfunding campaign ever hosted by the investment platform Abundance Generation 
The scheme, called Oakapple Berwickshire, will be Europe's largest crowdfunded solar project having raised over �700,000 of its �3.1m target since launching on October 31 2014.

'Green Innovation: industrial policy for a low-carbon future'
This report for the Trade Union Congress (TUC) argues that government has a key leadership role in creating a 'dynamic and vibrant innovation system' that meets society's environmental and economic aspirations. The direction the UK's economic growth now takes depends much on government vision and leadership in driving eco-innovation. Innovation is essential for greening growth and yet innovation policy is not currently aligned with aspirations for a green economy. The report argues that a more active, dynamic approach is required.
Limitations of the waste hierarchy for achieving absolute reductions in material throughput
This article explores 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 prioritises waste prevention over reuse, recycling, incineration, and landfill. 

The authors describe the origins of the waste hierarchy and compare its original aims with its current use. It is found that the waste hierarchy can serve to minimise landfill but may not always lead to the best environmental outcome. The implementation of the hierarchy has emphasised avoidance of the least preferred options but paid little attention to achieving the top priority of prevention. Furthermore, reuse and recycling can reduce primary inputs but the hierarchy allows the total material throughput to grow unrestrained. Recycling figures have greatly improved over the last decades, but a distinction between open-loop and closed-loop recycling is necessary to further limit the environmental impacts of material flows. 

The paper concludes that the hierarchy in itself is not sufficient and instead needs to be used within an overarching framework to achieve dematerialisation of the economy. The article was published with Open Access in the Journal of Clean Production. 
Resource Event: 3-5 March 2015 ExCeL, London

Resource 2015 combines exhibition, workshop and conference to form the world's largest gathering of circular economy pioneers.  As supporters of Resource, Innovate UK and the Knowledge Transfer Network will be providing a range of activities including:

  • an interactive circular economy business models mindmap exercise
  • partner searching on the networking wall
  • scheduling of 1:1 meetings with Resource delegates
  • advice and support from the KTN team
  • a series of SME speakers on the 'SME soapbox'
  • workshops for potential competition applicants.


Register for free to attend Resource:


eWorld Procurement & Supply 3 March 2015

eWorld Spring 2015 will take place at the QEII Conference Centre central London will focus on topics such as:

  • Future trends and market conditions
  • Procurement's future in driving business value
  • Stakeholder engagement and change management
  • Social media and procurement
  • Sustainable procurement strategies

Attendance is FREE for senior executives from the commercial, public and third sectors  


Urban Ecosystem Services 

The decline of urban populations and abandonment of buildings and land could provide an opportunity to promote ecosystem services, a new study suggests. The researchers examined the relationships between the use of abandoned land and ecosystem services, providing insight into the pros and cons of different urban planning policies. 

Twitter: @AnneFinnane (Editor of eg magazine)