Which country has just set a world record for using wind power? Which major fast food chain plans to go green by 2025? And, what’s needed to clean up the fashion industry?
This, and more, in the week’s ten biggest climate innovation stories.
French startup launches hydrogen-powered bicycles
A French startup has become the first company to start factory production of hydrogen-powered bicycles for use in corporate or municipal fleets.
Denmark positions itself as the flag bearer for wind power
Denmark just set a world record for using wind power to drive its economy. It obtained 43.4 per cent of its electricity from wind last year, beating its own record. The government’s goal is to derive 50 per cent of the country’s entire energy consumption from renewables by 2030.
Giant twisting staircase revealed in Schmidt Hammer Lassen-designed solar-powered office
Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects has unveiled designs of a new sustainable office campus in Oslo for the Norwegian Geotechnical Institute (NGI), Norway’s largest geotechnical specialist community. Topped with green roofs and solar panels, the approximately 30,000-square-meter campus comprises two modern structures that will accommodate up to 300 employees.
Evian will make all its water bottles out of 100 per cent recycled plastic
Can the bottled water industry solve its sustainability problem? Evian, the France-based mineral water brand, plans to become “circular” by 2025 by increasing consumer recycling rates and partnering with a nonprofit that works on collecting ocean plastic. Also, all Evian bottles will be made from 100 per cent recycled plastic.
The world’s largest wildlife sanctuary proposed for Antarctica
A campaign led by the EU and Greenpeace is seeking to protect an area the size of Germany in Antarctica. A nearly 700,000 square-mile area around the Antarctic Peninsula and the Weddell Sea would become the world’s largest sanctuary if the proposal is accepted, protecting killer and blue whales, seals, penguins, and other sea life.
Santander invests €32.3 million in battery energy storage solutions
Spanish banking giant Santander has announced it will invest €32.3 million into London-based Battery Energy Storage Solutions for the express purpose of building and operating a grid-scale battery storage portfolio of 100 megawatts by the end of the year.
If McDonald’s keeps its promise, your Happy Meal could be green within seven years
On Tuesday, McDonald’s announced that, by 2025, all packaging on customer products will come from “renewable or recycled sources,” or sources certified by environmental organizations Forest Stewardship Council or the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification.
Green-roofed office is the first large-scale CLT structure in southeast Europe
Instead of concrete or metal, this striking eco-friendly office building in Romania features a sturdy timber skeleton—making it the first large-scale CLT structure in southeast Europe. Romanian firm Tecto Arhitectura designed the building as the new office for HSR factory in Reci, Covasna. Designed for long-term sustainability, the office building draws on geothermal energy, uses energy-efficient technologies, and is topped by an extensive green roof.
Denmark is cleaning up US pollution in Greenland
Half a century ago, the US abandoned several military bases in Greenland, leaving behind toxic pollution. Now, the Danish government announced that it will foot the bill to clean it up, to the tune of €24 million dollars.
What’s needed to clean up the fashion industry?
A new report from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation outlines steps to a circular fashion economy. Titled “A New Textiles Economy: Redesigning Fashion’s Future,” the report outlines a vision and sets out actions for a circular clothing economy, in which the planet is no longer ravaged by our lust for new, trendy clothes, and this enormously influential industry is turned into a force for good.