Riya Mehta: Seville plans to turn its oranges into electricity
Spain plans to take its famous Seville oranges and turn them into clean energy. The streets of Seville are home to over 48,000 orange trees and with that, comes a lot of waste in the form of falling fruit. Not only is this a hazard for passers by, it’s a waste of vital energy resources too. Rotting oranges emit methane. Now, however, an opportunity has been identified: to use this to generate electricity and help fuel water purification plants. In fact, if all of Seville’s oranges were harvested, they could power 73,000 homes.
Raeya Arora: Biden administration announces the plan to expand wind power
In the coming decade, they plan to expand offshore wind energy by opening new areas to development, speeding environmental permitting, and boosting public financing for projects. The plan is part of President Joe Biden’s broader effort to rapidly transition the US economy to net zero greenhouse gas emissions to fight climate change.
Dia Arora: Tesco, the UK’s Biggest Supermarket Chain, Removed 1 Billion Pieces of Plastic from Across Its Stores in 2020
The UK’s largest grocery store, Tesco, has permanently removed 1 billion pieces of plastic from its stores as part of a new strategy. This strategy, named the “4Rs Packaging Strategy”, focuses on removing plastics wherever possible, reducing it wherever possible, reusing more plastic, and recycling the leftovers especially in reference to the packaging of many products. This includes the small plastic bags available for packaging loose fruits and vegetables, plastic covers on greeting cards, secondary lids on containers of yogurt, cream, etc., and so on. This strategy involves the assessment of each piece of plastic in stores and removing all unnecessary plastic packaging. Sarah Bradbury, Tesco’s Quality Director, commented on the strategy making remarks such as “… removing a billion pieces of plastic is fantastic progress” and that their 4Rs strategy “… will continue into 2021 — [since] there is no place for unnecessary or non-recyclable packaging in [their] business”. The company has made it clear to suppliers that they hold the right to and will no longer stock products containing excessive packaging, especially that of plastic. As a result, Tesco’s annual packaging footprint has reduced by 3,480 tonnes since the launch of the strategy in August 2019. The company has removed 11,000 tonnes of hard-to-recycle materials since 2018 by informing suppliers of their intentions to only stock easy-to-recycle materials.