Last Week in Sustainability News – 24.06
Updated: Jul 15
This past week was filled with interesting sustainability and climate news, we’ve summarised the top stories below
UK pension schemes to measure and publish sustainability information
New government measures will require pension schemes to measure and disclose how their investments align with the Paris Agreement, which aims to limit global warming to 1.5C.
In light of these measures, by October, over 80% of UK pension scheme members will be invested in schemes that measure and disclose sustainability information via climate risk reports.
The UK government state that these new rules will “create the opportunity to invest in green businesses, support jobs for the future, and ultimately help grow a stronger and more sustainable economy”.
Electric ferry sails 92km without recharging; a new record
A Danish, battery-powered, electric ferry (Ellen) has broken the record for the longest journey on a single battery charge, sailing 92km while returning from the International Energy Agency’s 7th Global Conference on Energy Efficiency.
The ferry was launched in 2019 and cost €21.3m to develop and build. While this is considerably more expensive than a similarly sized diesel vessel, savings are made due to the electric ferry’s lower operating costs.
Experts predict that future electric ferries will quickly break even with the most efficient diesel-electric vessels, and will incur additional yearly savings due to lower operating costs.
People urged to eat locally as transport found responsible for 19% of food-related emissions
A recent study has uncovered that 19% of food-related emissions are due to transport; a figure up to seven times higher than previously thought.
This makes food transportation responsible for around 6% of total global emissions.
The study’s authors urge that people, especially those in rich countries, acquire their food locally. This is especially pertinent for foods that require temperature-controlled transportation, as this further increases emissions.
Other measures can also be taken to reduce food transport emissions. These include electrifying transport vehicles and using less climate-damaging refrigerants.
Appetite for frogs’ legs driving species close to extinction
Europe’s importation of over 200 million frogs per year is driving species of wild frogs in Indonesia, Turkey, and Albania to the brink of extinction.
Frog populations are depleting and are expected to continue to decline if Europe’s appetite for the animal remains. It is estimated that the Anatolian water frog could become extinct in Turkey by as early as 2032.
Frogs play a vital role in ecosystems and help to keep insect populations stable. Experts have noticed that when frog populations decline, the use of toxic pesticides increases.