General Motors and Detroit Renewable Energy have announced a renewable energy project to turn solid municipal waste from the city of Detroit into process steam that will be used to heat and cool portions of GM’s Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant.When the project is operational, 58 percent of the plant’s energy needs will come from renewable energy, making Detroit-Hamtramck the top GM facility in the world by percentage of renewable energy used.
Sainsbury’s new supermarket in Leicester, opening Wednesday, November 27, is one of the British retailer’s two new “triple zero” stores. The 81,700 sq ft store will produce zero carbon emissions from all on-site energy used, send zero waste to landfill and have zero impact on the water usage of the local catchment area because of its water-neutral status.Neil Sachdev, Sainsbury’s Property Director, said: "We aim to be the UK’s greenest grocer and achieve our 20x20 target to reduce our operational carbon emissions by 30 percent absolute. To do this we’re now building and running highly sustainable, low-carbon stores.
In the spirit of the just-wrapped SB London conference, the city has announced just the kind of ingenious, waste-to-resource solution that we love: Excess heat generated by London Underground trains will now be captured and used to help warm homes and cut energy bills in the Islington district.The project — the first of its kind in Europe — is a partnership between Islington Council, London Mayor Boris Johnson, UK Power Networks and Transport for London.As anyone who has ever ridden it knows, the Tube generates large amounts of heat; its capture and utilization through a nearby vent off the Northern Line will not only warm local homes, it could very well make the ride more comfortable for the millions of daily commuters.
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. is the first to receive the US Zero Waste Business Council’s platinum certification — the highest possible rating — for successfully diverting 99.8 percent of its waste.The company says its waste-management efforts also saved some $5,398,470 in avoided disposal costs and $903,308 in 2012 revenue, which we believe is called "proving the business case." By diverting 51,414 tons from landfill and incineration, Sierra Nevada avoided 11,812 tons of carbon dioxide, according to USZWBC.USZWBC audited the Zero Waste diversion processes at Sierra Nevada in Chico, Calif. and found that the facility is successfully reducing, reusing, recycling and composting at an unprecedented rate.
For Ben Kneppers and David Stover, the dream was always sun, sand and a great day of skateboarding and surfing. But their passion for sustainability and the environment made them keenly aware of plastic pollution in the oceans — when the two took on beach cleanups as a hobby, all it took was a brief epiphany that this plastic could be put to use, and Bureo Skateboards was born.
Over the past fiscal year, more than 99.35 percent of all materials entering Procter & Gamble’s (P&G) plants were used in products and through recycling, reuse, and conversion of waste to energy, according to the company’s 2013 Sustainability Report.Additionally, more than 50 of the Company’s global sites now send zero manufacturing waste to landfill, including every site in Germany. Since 2010, P&G says it has reduced manufacturing waste by 56 percent per unit of production — more than double the company’s original goal.
A Dutch wastewater treatment facility (WWTP) and paper mill are testing out a new sewage recycling system that reduces sludge formation by half, cuts operational costs by 30 percent, significantly increases treatment capacity and yields biosolids that can be used in a host of applications.Developed in Israel, Applied CleanTech’s Sewage Recycling System (SRS) converts the bio-solids found in wastewater into Recyllose — a new sterilized product based on cellulose extracted from the wastewater, which is automatically packed into a reusable commodity and transported to paper, construction, plastic and energy industries.Allow us to provide a visual aid:
An old Chinese proverb says, “We are all born, grow old, get sick and die,” but those who are interested in sustainability would likely add that we are all then born again. Rebirth and recycling are two themes that have helped us to understand cyclical movement in the business world, and there are a few companies that exemplify those themes.
techfortrade, a UK charity that aims to connect developing nations with emerging technology in order to facilitate trade, today announced the launch of the Ethical Filament Foundation (EFF). The EFF will collaborate with organizations around the world to ensure the availability and viability of ethically produced 3D-printing filament, made from recycled plastic waste.
Sustainability think tank Sustainia today presented TaKaDu, an Israeli company that produces technology that reduces water distribution losses, with an award honoring the world’s best sustainability innovation.In front of an audience of over 1,000 guests gathered in Copenhagen, TaKaDu was announced winner of the Sustainia Award 2013. TaKaDu was first chosen as the best solution for IT when Sustainia announced its top 10 innovations, out of more than 500 projects and technologies from 79 countries, in September.
Since appearing on season two of NBC’s Fashion Star, Daniel Silverstein has made a name for himself in the eco-fashion world. According to the New York Times, the fashion industry generally discards 10-20 percent of the fabric used to manufacture apparel, but Silverstein disrupts the paradigm, using design-driven innovation to create a fashion line without fabric waste. We chatted with Silverstein and brand manager Chris Anderson to see what inspires them about designing without waste and where the future of fashion is headed.
Innovative carpet-tile manufacturer and environmental pioneer Interface has announced its participation in 'Healthy Seas, a Journey from Waste to Wear' — a new initiative designed to address the growing environmental problem of marine waste. Interface is the first flooring company to participate in this global program, founded by yarn manufacturer Aquafil, conservation group ECNC Land & Sea Group, and Dutch manufacturer Star Sock, as part of Interface's long-term 'Mission Zero' sustainability goal.
Sainsbury's has announced that its new store at Weymouth Gateway will be water neutral — 100 percent of its water demand will be met through water-efficient infrastructure and offsetting partnerships in the local community, and the total water used within the local catchment area will not increase as a result of this new store. The grocery retailer says it will also replicate this approach at its new supermarket in Leicester, opening at the end of November.
Best Buy, Dell, HP and Samsung have won the Consumer Electronics Association’s (CEA) inaugural eCycling Leadership Award, which recognizes consumer electronics companies that recycle above and beyond levels mandated by government.In 2011, CEA announced the eCycling Leadership Initiative to increase the amount of recycled consumer electronics to one billion pounds annually by 2016, an effort known as the Billion Pound Challenge. CEA says the industry is on track to meet this goal by recycling 585 million pounds of products in 2012.
The Hershey Company announced two more of its plants have achieved zero-waste-to-landfill (ZWL) status. The chocolate maker now has six U.S. plants that no longer dispose routine waste into landfills. With the addition of the Y&S Plant in Lancaster, Pa., and the Robinson Plant in Robinson, Ill., Hershey has exceeded its goal to convert five plants to ZWL by 2015 well ahead of schedule.“Converting plants to ZWL is challenging, but our plant employees have shown how deeply dedicated they are to environmental stewardship,” said Terence O’Day, SVP and Chief Supply Chain Officer at the Hershey Company. “They have worked extremely hard to reach this important milestone.”
UK paper manufacturer James Cropper has developed another innovative recycling process that incorporates cocoa husk waste from chocolate production into unbleached cellulose fiber to produce a food-grade paper. The company says turning the otherwise wasted skins of many of the 3.5 million metric tons of cocoa beans produced each year into paper could be a significant breakthrough for the food and packaging industries.The paper is now in production and certified for use in the food supply chain, including as wrapping for chocolate bars.
Waste Management has announced it is building a facility that will create pipeline-ready natural gas from its Milam Landfill in Fairmont City, Ill. At a ceremony last week at the landfill, state, county and local officials joined the company to celebrate the groundbreaking.The processed renewable natural gas will be injected into the pipelines of utility provider Ameren Illinois for withdrawal at other locations, including some Waste Management facilities. Once there, it will be used to fuel truck fleets and other equipment that run on compressed natural gas (CNG). Waste Management is calling the plant the Renewable Natural Gas Facility and expects it to begin delivering gas to the pipelines in late summer 2014.
Today, UK grocery retailer Tesco unveiled food waste figures for its operations and supply chain, alongside figures that show 68 percent of bagged salad in particular is wasted and that 35 percent of this waste occurs in the home.As a first step in reducing this waste, Tesco announced it will end multi-buys on large bags of salad and is developing mix-and-match promotions for smaller bags in a bid to help customers reduce the amount they are wasting at home.Bagged salad is just one of the 25 best-selling grocery products that Tesco has tracked from farm to fork to gain a detailed understanding of where food waste occurs. This is part of the grocer’s commitment to lead in tackling food waste and to work with suppliers and customers to address this.
Nestlé today announced it will achieve zero waste in all 150 of its European factories by 2020, meaning no factory waste will go to landfill or be incinerated without energy being recovered from the process.“The decision to achieve zero waste illustrates Nestlé’s commitment to environmentally sustainable business practices,” said Laurent Freixe, Nestlé Executive Vice President and Zone Director for Europe. “We already have over 25 factories in Europe that do not dispose of waste into the environment.“By relentlessly eliminating all sources of waste, or by recycling or recovering energy from unavoidable residues, I am convinced we can achieve the same for all our European operations,” Freixe said.Cleaning up
Each week leading up to our SB London conference, where the winner of the SB London Innovation Open (SBIOL) will be announced on November 18, we will get to know each of our four finalists. This week, meet the SBIOL public vote winner, O2E Technologies.