Daily Planet

This week’s ten biggest climate innovation stories — 20 July

Image via Flickr: carsten_tb

Which tech giants are teaming up to advance smart urban renewables? Why does the circular economy need to be part of a bigger discussion about growth? And, how is one engineer using old cell phones to stop illegal logging?

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


Climate scientists flock to France’s call

Hundreds of climate scientists, including many from the United States, have applied to work in France under a €60-million scheme set up by the country’s president, Emmanuel Macron.

Read more on Nature.com


Tech giants team up to promote smart city vision

Envision Energy, Microsoft, Accenture and others have launched a new alliance to support integration of renewables and Internet of Things technologies.

Read more on Business Green


More sustainable resource use could net electricals sector €5bn

The electrical and electronic equipment industry could benefit by up to €5bn from using resources more sustainably and improving on re-use and consumer take-back schemes, research by UK organisation WRAP has estimated.

Read more on Business Green


China says it won’t take any more foreign garbage

China has notified the World Trade Organisation that it will stop accepting shipments of rubbish such as waste plastic and paper as part of a campaign against “foreign garbage”.

Read more on Reuters


Countries flirt with maritime decarbonisation deadline

As a 2018 target to complete a strategy looms on the horizon, there are signs that China’s attitude has softened and that talks are coming out of the doldrums. Shipping is the only sector without any internationally agreed strategy on how to tackle emissions.

Read more on GreenBiz.com


Best ways to cut climate change are overlooked

Researchers from Lund University in Sweden have analysed 39 peer-reviewed papers, carbon calculators and government reports to estimate the potential of a range of individual lifestyle choices to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The four ways which have the most substantial effect in decreasing someone’s climate impact are eating a plant-based diet, avoiding air travel, living without reliance on a car, and having smaller families.

Read more on Eco Business


Use waste rather than crops for biofuels, says UK report

A Royal Academy of Engineering report backs increased use of biofuels but says more should come from waste rather than food crops. Biofuel use in aircraft and ships will be needed in coming decades to reduce emissions, according to a new report for the UK government.

Read more on New Scientist


Circular economy needs to be part of bigger effort to tackle growth

Micha Narberhaus and Joséphine von Mitschke-Collande, Founder of Smart CSOs Lab and programme manager at Innaxis Research Institute argue that the circular economy needs to be part of a bigger effort to tackle economic growth, and the shaping of the circular economy should not be left to global corporations.

Read more on The Guardian


How one engineer is using old cell phones to stop illegal logging

Each cell phone is protected by a plastic case and powered by a small solar array. A highly sensitive microphone records the sounds of the rainforest, which is sent to the cloud to be analysed. When it hears a chainsaw, it sends a text or email to authorities.

Read more on Clean Technica


Blockchain-based electricity network would be energy-intensive

Blockchain-enabled energy trading could help lower carbon emissions but energy intensity, energy efficiency and privacy issues must first be overcome.

Read more on The Guardian