Uneven efforts by world’s top waste exporters to reduce and recover waste, new study shows

Japan emerged top in RAJA’s ranking of 29 countries in the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) which submitted municipal waste generation and treatment data.

It had relatively low waste per capita of about 352 kilograms and a high waste recovery rate of nearly 92 per cent. Belgium emerged second—although it generated more waste per capita at about 419 kg, it recycled more of its trash (98 per cent). Sweden ranked third with almost 442 kg of waste per person and a waste recovery rate of over 99 per cent. The US was at the bottom of the ranking, with 738 kg waste per capita and a recovery rate just shy of 48 per cent. 

RAJA’s analysis took into account figures submitted for five years up until 2017 or 2018. Most of the countries were in Europe, and Japan was the sole Asian country studied.

<img alt="top waste exporters" src="https://www.hoteldealsphuket.com/phukettraveltips/wp-content/uploads/2020/10

Korea’s Shinhan Financial Group declares net zero ambition

Shinhan Financial Group, one of South Korea’s largest banks, has committed to a zero-carbon future with a plan to decarbonise its business activities.

It is Korea’s first bank to commit to net zero emissions in a frenetic period for corporate climate action in the East Asian country.

The company aims to measure the carbon emissions of the group’s assets, set reduction targets, and reduce its net carbon footprint to zero by expanding loans in renewable energy, according to a report in Korean newspaper ChosenBiz. 

Societe Generale appoints Yasmine Djeddai as Asia Pacific head of sustainable finance

Societe Generale has appointed Yasmine Djeddai as the French financial services group’s first head of sustainable finance for the Asia Pacific region.

Djeddai takes on the role after 15 years with the company, and will be based in Hong Kong.

Her appointment was made in response to growing demand for environmental, social and governance (ESG) related products in the region, the company said in a statement.

Solar is now ‘cheapest electricity in history’, confirms IEA

The world’s best solar power schemes now offer the “cheapest…electricity in history” with the technology cheaper than coal and gas in most major countries.

That is according to the International Energy Agency’s World Energy Outlook 2020. The 464-page outlook, published today by the IEA, also outlines the “extraordinarily turbulent” impact of coronavirus and the “highly uncertain” future of global energy use over the next two decades.

Reflecting this uncertainty, this year’s version of the highly influential annual outlook offers four “pathways” to 2040, all of which see a major rise in renewables. The IEA’s main scenario has 43 per cent more solar output by 2040 than it expected in 2018, partly due to detailed new analysis showing that solar power is 20-50 per cent cheaper than thought.

Despite a more rapid rise for renewables

Sustainability concerns are growing. But can companies make products that consumers can afford?

The poll of 27,000 adults across 27 countries found that awareness of impacts on the planet is growing, with more consumers recognising the need to protect it. For instance, 74 per cent of the respondents said the world needed to consume less to preserve the environment for future generations. This is an increase from 66 per cent last year.

And while 94 per cent of Asian respondents currently perceive Covid-19 as the most serious global issue, such concerns were closely followed by climate change (91 per cent) and air pollution (90 per cent) across the climate-vulnerable region. Asian nations surveyed included India, China, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Vietnam, Hong Kong, South Korea, and Japan.

Yet although respondents indicated a willingn

Quick fix for hunger and climate goals? More spending on small farmers

Global goals to tackle climate change and end hunger by 2030 are within reach if donors and developing nations help small farmers grow more climate resilient crops, access irrigation and tap into social safety nets, researchers said Monday.

In a new report, they identified 10 key shifts that could lift nearly 500 million people out of hunger, double the incomes of 545 million small farmers in low and middle income countries, and limit agricultural emissions.

The changes would cost an extra $33 billion a year, said researchers from Ceres2030, a partnership between Cornell University, the International Food Policy Research Institute, and the International Institute for Sustainable Development.

Of that money, $14 billion would need to come from donors, who already s

Offshore wind takes off in China

In the past two years, China’s offshore wind power has increased more than any other nation.

A Global Wind Energy Council report on offshore wind in 2019 described the year as the best yet for the sector – and the biggest ever for China’s offshore wind capacity. China and the Asia-Pacific region look set to drive growth in the sector for the coming decade.

According to the report, China accounted for 40 per cent of global added offshore wind capacity in 2019, with a record 2.5 gigawatts (GW), 51 per cent more than the previous year. China now has 23 per cent of the world’s offshore wind capacity.

Most of China’s new capacity was added in Jiangsu, Guangdong and Fujian, with Jiangsu

China still making pangolin-based treatments despite banning use of scales: Study

Pangolin scales — armor-like, keratin-based plates that cover a pangolin’s body — are still being used in medicines sold and produced by Chinese companies, a new report has found.

This is being done despite the Chinese government banning pangolin scales from the official list of approved ingredients in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), and even giving the highest level of national protection to three species — the Chinese (Manis pentadactyla), Sunda (M. javanica) and Indian (M.

DBS and Fujitsu CEOs join expanded WBCSD exco

The head of Singapore’s DBS Bank, Piyush Gupta, and Japanese electronics firm Fujitsu, Takahito Tokita, have been appointed as executive committee members for the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD).

They join new exco members that include the heads of Compass Group, Stora Enso, and DSM to make up a line-up of 23, the largest in WBCSD’s 25-year history. New exco members, announced on Wednesday (14 October) were added to increase the diversity of backgrounds and experience represented in WBCSD, a CEO-led organisation working to accelerate the sustaina

South Korean utility Kepco moves away from coal

South Korea’s biggest electricity distribution company said on Friday (16 October) it will not invest in further new overseas coal power ventures and would either cancel or convert two out of four remaining projects in the pipeline to gas-powered ones.

Korea Electric Power Corporation (Kepco) “and its subsidiaries will not be pursuing new overseas coal power projects”, said the firm’s chief executive Kim Jong-gap at an annual governmental audit hearing by the Korean National Assembly.

The two planned projects affected by the turnaround are the 1,000-megawatt (MW) Sual 2 coal venture in the Philippines and the 630-MW Thabametsi coal-fired power plant in South Africa, which have both been <a href="https://www.news24.com/fin24/Economy/sa-power-plant-listed-4th-dirtiest-i

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