Daily Planet

This week’s ten biggest climate innovation stories — 30 November

How can we better finance small-scale energy efficiency projects? What’s a “Biological House”? And, can you guess how long it takes a new, zero-electricity washer to wash clothes?

This, and more, in the week’s ten biggest climate innovation stories.


Airbus, Siemens, and Rolls-Royce collaborating to develop hybrid electric engine (E-Fan X Program)

Three of the top aviation engine engineering firms in the world—Airbus, Siemens, and Rolls-Royce—are now collaborating on the development of a hybrid electric aircraft engine, the companies have jointly revealed.

Read more on Clean Technica.


Finance expert: Small-scale energy efficiency loans deserve more EU attention

There are many creative ways to finance small-scale energy efficiency projects such as building renovations, but they need to be discussed more at the European Commission level, and defined more precisely, Jessica Stromback told EURACTIV Czech Republic.

Read more on Euractiv.


The world’s first “Biological House” opens in Denmark

Danish firm Een til Een just unveiled the world’s first “Biological House.” The designers developed a process that converts agricultural waste (including grass, straw and seaweed) into raw building materials—and the resulting home leaves virtually zero impact upon the environment.

Read more on Inhabitat.


There’s now a vessel that produces zero pollution

Cie. Maritime Belge SA has built the first commercial ship that runs on hydrogen and produces zero pollution, taking the world a step closer to cargo without emissions.

Read more on Bloomberg New Energy Finance.


Fair fuel pricing: A test for Europe’s climate ambitions

Is the EU committed enough to increase taxes on fossil fuels? That is a question that needs to be raised now considering the long-running debate on the best measures, including energy taxation, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, write Kai Schlegelmilch and Zoltán Szabó.

Read more on Euraciv.


Stella McCartney’s new campaign trims textile waste

Fashion designer Stella McCartney has joined forces with circular economy campaigner Ellen MacArthur to kickstart a new push to reduce textile waste across the fashion industry after new figures lay bare the shocking levels of waste generated by the sector.


The zero-electricity Gentlewasher does the laundry in five minutes flat

The Gentlewasher washes clothes in five minutes with less water than washing machines and zero electricity. The hand-powered device can wash up to 12 T-shirts or eight dresses at a time, and it uses around 4.7 gallons of water—compare that to 13 gallons for an Energy Star washing machine, or 40 gallons for an older model washing machine.

Read more on Inhabitat.


Food waste: Clearer label plan in bid to cut

A new attempt is being made to improve labeling to prevent edible food going to waste. Wrap wants retailers to prioritise the term “best before”—suggesting clearly that the food can still be safely eaten after that date, even though it is less fresh.

Read more on BBC News.


Giant climate camera will watch how our planet changes

On 18 November, a behemoth of a scientific instrument was launched into orbit so it could look down on Earth to monitor its climate. Called a Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS), it takes pictures of our planet in infrared and visible light for a variety of purposes, including to measure the temperatures of the sea and atmosphere, to watch how ice and water move, and to analyse the vegetation level on Earth’s surface.

Read more on New Scientist.


‘We are the Energiewende’: German villages go 100 per cent renewable

Local communities are at the forefront of the clean energy transition in Germany, with some villages relying 100 per cent on renewables. EURACTIV Slovakia spoke to mayors there.

Read more on Euractiv.