Get a Quote
Greenzone Facilities Management

Ryanair Environmental Sustainability Review

Ryanair: 'We're reviewing everything around environmental sustainability' Aviation was firmly in the spotlight in 2019 – and for all the wrong reasons. Greta Thunberg’s insistence on not flying over environmental concerns took the so-called ‘flight-shaming’ movement global. Add that to calls to action by Sir David Attenborough, national governments, international bodies and some of the world’s largest investors, and you have a perfect storm – which, the Air Transport Association (Iata) is warning, could limit industry growth. These trends, coupled with the growing global prevalence of net-zero legislation, have hit companies across the global aviation sector. But for Irish budget airline Ryanair, the hit has been particularly hard. A report by Transport & Environment (T&E) last year concluded that the company was the EU's ninth-highest corporate carbon emitter in 2018, making it the first corporate without holdings in coal-fired power plants to ever rank within the bloc's top 10. It made headlines in many of Europe’s major tabloids. At the time, Ryanair countered the report’s claims by pointing out that the emissions were calculated on an overall company basis and not by its preferred metric – emissions per passenger, per kilometre travelled. Speaking exclusively to edie, Ryanair’s director of sustainability Thomas Fowler stood by the company’s choice to use that metric and insisted that it was gaining traction among airlines, their investors, and their passengers alike. “We try and tell investors that yes, in totality, we are going to have a big number, because we’re the largest airline in Europe,” he said. “You ultimately have to measure on a per-passenger, per kilometre basis…. The aviation industry have all agreed on the metric… A lot of investors are realising this is the metric.” Fowler also took issue with the fact that the T&E report only accounted for emissions reported under the EU’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), which excludes international flights departing from or arriving to the bloc from non-member countries. “We’re in a unique position as aviation in that we already get taxed heavily under the ETS. We’re paying €150m this year in ETS, which isn’t being re-invested in the aviation sector.” Ryanair’s emissions per passenger per kilometre stood at 66g at the end of 2019. The firm is targeting a reduction to 60g by 2030 Orginal Source

Greenzone Facilities Management

World's first 'human detector' to protect homeless people sleeping in bins

A waste management company has developed a device to help protect homeless people who seek shelter inside industrial bins. As temperatures drop across the country, waste containers become increasingly important for rough sleepers, of which there are currently 320,000 in the UK, according to the latest research by Shelter. While finding people sleeping inside bins is relatively rare, the rise in homelessness means that it is becoming an increasingly common situation. Over the last 10 years, the Waste Industry Safety and Health (WISH) forum states that 20 people have died after being accidentally thrown into trucks by rubbish collectors. The number of deaths means that checking bins for people has become a regular occurrence for many waste disposal companies. However, manufacturer Total Waste Solutions (TWS) has come up with a more reliable solution by creating what it claims is the world’s first “human detector”. The device, which fits on to the outside of an industrial bin, has been designed to give workers an extra layer of protection against unwittingly emptying bins with people inside. TWS states that the device is programmed to pick up on movement, gas, temperature and humidity, and will light up green if no one has been in the container since it was last emptied. If the device suspects someone is or has been inside the bin, the light will turn red. The “human detector” can also be controlled using bluetooth on a smartphone or tablet. The company adds that the data, which is saved to the device's memory for 30 days, could be passed to homeless organisations and help to identify “high risk bins” which homeless people are more likely to use. Orginal Source

Greenzone Facilities Management

Fertiliser made from recycled batteries now available

ZM-Grow contains zinc, manganese, and sulphur extracted from used batteries, and can be used to grow a variety of crops, including amenity turf. The micronutrients are extremely valuable for crops. Manganese improves nitrogen uptake and photosynthesis, while zinc boosts cell elongation and sugar consumption and sulphur helps crops build protein. Additionally, because there are limited recycling options for alkaline batteries, recycling them into fertiliser reduces the risk of toxic substances contaminating groundwater and the environment. ZM-Grow is distributed in the UK exclusively by Badger Crop Nutrition and is retailed by selected partners. Johnny Beck, agronomist at Agrovista Amenity, a retail partner of Badger Crop Nutrition, said: “In excess of 10 billion alkaline batteries are manufactured in the world each year, and just one battery can contaminate more than 160,000 litres of drinking water, should it not be disposed of correctly. “ZM-Grow is making a real difference in overcoming this problem. “Following trials at STRI over the summer, we’ve been able to launch the product at golf courses across the country, providing our customers with a highly ecological, organic fertiliser.” Orginal Source

Greenzone Facilities Management

University students save 922 tonnes of recycling from landfill

Ten universities and students’ unions participated in the RecycleLeague competition, which was run by SOS UK on behalf of the National Union of Students, and funded by Coca-Cola. After passing an application process, they were each given £1,800 in funding to set up initiatives to increase recycling among students and staff. The universities competed to win £15,000 to invest in future recycling initiatives. The competition was launched in Recycling Week in September 2019. Over a two-month period, the universities were assessed on the increase of their recycling rates as compared to the same period in 2018, and their student and community engagement. The average recycling rate increased by 8.3% across the universities, who recycled on average 70 tonnes more than they had in 2018. In total, 922 tonnes of recycling were diverted from landfill across the universities. Recycling activities across the country included a Thames litter-picking event, DIY soap-making, and cooking workshops aimed at highlighting food waste reduction. Overall, the various campaigns engaged more than 39,000 people. The University of Worcester won the competition, with a recycling rate increase of 28% against its 2018 baseline. Its recycling activities were focused in its St John’s campus halls of residence and involved a video and ‘bin poll’ game. Students visited flats around the campus, talked to them about recycling, and ensured they had an accurate poster explaining what belonged in each bin. Katy Boom, director of sustainability at the University of Worcester, said: “Students and staff were really committed to boosting recycling efforts and are passionate about continuing its legacy moving forward. “The activities the students undertook, particularly giving more information, proved really effective. “Thanks to the prize money from Coca-Cola, we’re planning to run workshops with local community groups in Worcester, and we’ll be working with a local social landlord and the city council to run a similar competition for local people.” Orginal Source

Greenzone Facilities Management

Environment Bill passes first Parliamentary stage

Given an automatic First Reading yesterday (30 January) without discussion, the Bill now moves to a Second Reading although no date has yet been announced for this. The Bill is short on detail of what will actually change, especially in terms of producer responsibility, with measures mainly in place to give ministers relevant powers; for example there are paragraphs on producer responsibility in Part 3, the waste and resource efficiency chapter, but little detail. Attention for the waste and recycling sector is instead likely to also focus on detailed consultation documents, which will reflect government thinking, and these are due out in the early summer or before.< /p> Policy paper Alongside the Bill, a detailed policy statement has been issued setting out the rationale for various environmental measures covering key topics such as waste management and air quality. The statement emphasises how the Bill will move the economy towards a “more circular economic model”. There will be clauses to set out minimum ecodesign for products and measures to support “a shift towards durable, repairable and recyclable products, and banning those products or packaging which cannot be reused or recycled (where appropriate).” Confirmation of perhaps the most radical changes which will impact on waste and recycling – a revamp of the PRN system – comes in the document which says that “Powers in the Environment Bill to introduce new extended producer responsibility schemes will enable us to reform our existing producer responsibility arrangements and introduce new schemes in the future. Extended producer responsibility schemes seek to make producers responsible for the full net costs of managing their products at end of life. The powers provide for modulated fees that incentivise producers to design their products with re-use and recycling in mind, as those that make their products easier to recycle will pay less.” Orginal Source

Greenzone Facilities Management

WRAP to target 'antisocial' food waste

It said a ”national food conversation” would be launched later this year to reach those who “remain unreceptive” to food waste messages. The campaign has been developed “to get citizens to be outraged about the issue of food waste, in the same way that ocean plastic and the climate crisis have created such a massive impact in the public’s consciousness”. Among its objectives is that wasting food should be considered as antisocial behaviour by the public. WRAP announced the conversation as it pointed to new data showing a reduction of almost 480,000 tonnes in UK food waste over three years – equivalent to filling the Royal Albert Hall 10 times. It said reduced food waste had saved citizens more than £1bn a year compared with 2015, and household food waste stood at 6.6 million tonnes, down from 7.1 million tonnes in 2015. Total UK food waste was 9.5 million tonnes – including wastage from the supply chain – down from 10 million tonnes in 2015. The data came from WRAP’s milestone report on its Courtauld Commitment in 2025, which sets out progress in food waste reduction since 2007. It said 1.4 million tonnes of food has been saved from going to waste each year against 2007 levels – enough each year to fill 150,000 food collection trucks. But the organisation said that households still wasted 4.5 million tonnes of food that could have been eaten, worth £14bn a year. Chief executive Marcus Gover said: “It is untenable that we carry on wasting food on such a monumental scale when we are seeing the visible effects of climate change every day, and when nearly a billion people go hungry every day.” WRAP also said its annual citizen survey had found that, despite more of the public being aware of food waste, only 39% connected wasting food at home with its environmental impact. Orginal Source