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Tagged with " Environment"

Indonesia’s new president clamps down on deforestation

Nov 27, 2014   //   by Kim Alviar   //   New and Views  //  No Comments

Indonesia is the world’s third largest emitter of carbon dioxide. This has been caused by destroying peatlands and widespread deforestation, where 80% of it is illegal and used for palm oil and timber plantations which are usually operated by large companies that do not take the environment into consideration. Indonesia’s new president Joko Widodo, announced “If they (plantation companies) are indeed destroying the ecosystem because of their monoculture plantations, they will have to be terminated. It must be stopped, we mustn’t allow our tropical rainforest to disappear because of monoculture plantations like palm oil.”

deforestation

The new president also believes that the peatlands should be managed by the community to farm sago (a staple food), as he can trust that the community will use the area in a correct manner that looks after the environment, something that the larger companies won’t do.

Greenpeace hopes that from now on, the protection of Indonesia’s forests and peatlands will be greatly improved and that strict rules will now come in to place. They have mentioned that the “existing laws are weak and poorly enforced.”

Norway’s untouched, idyllic fjord to be spoilt?

Nov 19, 2014   //   by Kim Alviar   //   New and Views  //  No Comments

Norway is always a great tourist attraction for its idyllic scenery and it’s unspoilt lands. But unfortunately, a mining company, ‘Nordic Mining’ wishes to dump 6m tonnes of tailings into a fjord, per year for 50 years. The annual waste would include 1,200 tonnes of sulphuric acid, 1,000 tonnes of sodium, 1,000 tonnes of phosphoric acid, 360 tonnes of carbonic acid and 90 tonnes of acrylamide as well as other acids, solvents and heavy metals including copper, nickel, lead, zinc and mercury.

The mining company claims that the waste will only cover 13% of the surface at the bottom of the fjord and although it will effect the environment, it will be temporary. They believe the waste would be more harmful if it was dumped on land rather than in the sea.

Of course the locals and conservationists do not accept these justifications. They believe the damage will be more devastating than what the mining company is saying. “The waste from the planned mine would smother everything on the bottom of the fjord. In addition, ocean streams would likely carry the toxic mining waste far from the dumping area, with detrimental effects on marine life” says a volunteer from Friends of the Earth Norway.

Scientists from the Norwegian Institute of Marine Research have even mentioned that the very fine waste particles will spread far from the fjord, polluting the food chain and harming its vulnerable ecosystem.

Seafood and fishing industry leaders and tourists have requested for further research to support the mining company’s plans, or the plans should be rejected.

The Government will be announcing a decision within the next few days.

 

5p bag-charge to commence in England next year

Nov 14, 2014   //   by Kim Alviar   //   New and Views  //  No Comments

Although many of us have got into the habit of reusing our plastic bags, single-plastic bags are still a huge issue. Seals, turtles, a million seabirds and 1000,000 sea mammals are killed every year by ingesting them or getting them selves tangled.

The average EU citizen used 191 plastic bags in 2010 and only 6% of them were recycled, according to the commission. But when Ireland used a compulsory charge for single-use plastic bags in 2002, their use was reduced by 90% within a year. In Wales, the compulsory charge began in 2011 and have already resulted in a 76% fall in plastic bag use. Northern Ireland and Scotland began their charges this year. And England will be following next year October, where all big supermarket chains and large stores will charge 5p per bag. It’s proceeds will go to charities involved in clearing up the environmental damage caused by the bags.

We certainly know that many shoppers will be irritated by the 5p bag-charge, but can’t the large supermarket chains provide strong paper bags instead? Or 100% biodegradable bags?

Finally! Easy to open toy packaging

Oct 27, 2014   //   by Kim Alviar   //   New and Views  //  No Comments

I’m sure many of you have come across that problem where it takes light-years just to remove the toy from all that fancy packaging. It’s extremely annoying how those wires and clips are securely attached to the box, especially when you have an eager child begging you to hurry up so they can finally get their hands on this brand new toy. That’ll soon come to an end as major British retailer Marks and Spencers have recently announced that they will be replacing those annoying plastic and wire clips with paper ties.

This also means that we no longer have to separate all the packaging into what can be recycled and can’t be recycled. We’ll be able to just toss the whole lot into the recycling bin knowing that we’re doing good for our lovely earth. The paper ties work with a locking teeth design made with a 310gsm material which will help secure the toy in its packaging. As stated on their website, they aim to become the world’s most sustainable major retailer. And with this new paper tie invention, they will be replacing all their plastic and wire ties across their product range, where possible.

This great idea has just come in time for Christmas, which means less screaming children waiting to play with their Christmas gifts. Hopefully other retailers will soon diminish those old fashion fiddly wire ties, (it’s about time too!) which will also mean no more cuts on your fingers!

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