News in Brief | World Environment Day
In the UK and beyond, the Society for the Environment sponsors World Environment Day, a United Nations initiative that takes place on June 5 each year. The initiative provides a platform for global education and inspiration; to focus attention on a particularly pressing environmental issue.
This year, the global theme for World Environment Day is ecosystem restoration, as part of the launch of the United Nations “Decade for Ecosystem Restoration” (2021 – 2030).
Earlier this year, Chartered Environmentalists explained why ecosystem restoration is such a timely theme choice.
You might think that restoring ecosystems is only a problem for global institutions and governments. Yet this couldn’t be further from the truth. Imagine if we could increase our connection with nature, especially in cities, and through this repair and restore all our ecosystems, all over the world… This is our vision as World Environment Day approaches. (June 5), throughout the United Nations Decade for the Restoration of Ecosystems (2021 – 2030)… and beyond!
To realize this vision, SocEnv has continued this year to work alongside its key partners Canary Wharf Group, CIEEM, IEMA, Siemens, Skanska and Wilmott Dixon, to develop the Ecosystem Restoration Hub. Here you’ll find inspiring resources on the importance of restoring our ecosystems and what we can all do to help!
Sarah Jones CEnv, Environmental Manager at Siemens, said: “We all have a role to play in restoring ecosystems, whether from an individual or organizational perspective. At Siemens, we work with Wildlife Trusts to encourage our teams to engage with the natural world by volunteering and participating in # 30DaysWild. A strengthened relationship with nature will help us all play a role in achieving the goals set by the United Nations Decade for Ecosystem Restoration.
To maximize their combined impact, SocEnv has also partnered with the National Park City Foundation, as well as Wildlife Trusts’ 30 Days Wild campaign, which encourages people to do one wild thing every day during the month of June.
To learn more about what you can do to restore our ecosystems and how you can encourage others to do the same, visit socenv.org.uk/ecosystemrestoration
To mark World Environment Day, Birmingham Airport highlighted its latest efforts to reduce waste in its quest for a more sustainable future and help local people.
In May 2021, airport shops and restaurants donated 2.7 tonnes of merchandise and foodstuffs to local charities who are able to reuse the products, estimated to be worth £ 16,000 in Retail price.
Items such as candy, snacks, soft drinks, bottled water, gift sets, t-shirts, books, stationery, games, toys and travel accessories were graciously donated and will be used to support the work of three local charities – Unite4homeless, Birmingham Children’s Hospital and Beginning at Home.
Tom Redfern, Head of Sustainability at Birmingham Airport, said: “As part of our sustainability strategy, we are committed to improving recycling rates, embracing circular economy principles and be a responsible neighbor.
“World Environment Day reminds us of the importance of these issues and these numbers show that we are making great strides in achieving all three of these goals. There is still a lot of work to do but, with the support of our partners, we are determined to reduce our environmental impact while supporting neighboring communities.
The work is being coordinated by the airport’s waste business partner, Novati. Darren Andrew, Senior Corporate Sustainability Manager, said: “We believe the success of Birmingham airports is because together we are talking about resource management and innovation rather than waste and trash management.
“It is essential that we focus on reducing and reusing materials, as this has the greatest impact on the environment and the climate crisis. It’s great to be able to deliver a project that has a positive impact on the local community.
Waitrose has introduced new reduced plastic packaging for its UK strawberries, which will help eliminate 16.89 tonnes of plastic and adhesive this summer.
The new ‘Air-Light’ tray, which will be supplied by Waitrose’s longtime supplier, Berry Gardens, is made from 80% recycled material, is lighter and incorporates a padded design that helps protect the fruit from damage.
This eliminated the need for a separate bubble pad used in previous designs to maintain product quality. In turn, the glue used to attach the stamp to the packaging has also been removed.
The tray, which was developed by packaging company Sharpak, will be available in select stores and on select lines ** as part of a trial run throughout the summer. The trial period will be used to ensure product quality is maintained and should roll out more widely next summer if successful.
Marija Rompani, Director of Ethics and Sustainability at John Lewis Partnership, comments: “Strawberries and cream have been a summer staple since their introduction at Wimbledon in the late 1800s.
“While many fans will still have to watch events from their living room this year, British strawberries are thankfully now in season – meaning much of the tradition can still be enjoyed by all, and this further reduction in packaging plastic will help make them taste that much sweeter this summer.
The UK strawberry season has been delayed due to bad weather in May, but a supportive harvest is now expected from June as the country enjoys sunnier conditions. The warm weather over this holiday weekend saw strawberry sales increase by 18% from the previous weekend.
Waitrose was ranked number one earlier this year in Greenpeace’s ranking for its work to reduce single-use plastics.
Ahead of World Environment Day this Saturday (June 5), HLP Klearfold, the world’s largest producer of innovative and eco-friendly printed plastic / acetate packaging, has created a helpful downloadable guide to recycling symbols found on plastic packaging in the UK.
It comes after recent research from the company found consumers in the UK want more plastic packaging advice and education.
HLP Klearfold commissioned a report that used comparative linguistic analysis (CLA) to help unravel the language, phraseology, topics and sentiment of millions of words from public conversations and online content.
The data found that people were 7.4 times more likely to refer to the term “advice” when commenting on plastic packaging in 2020 than in 2019 and 1.9 times more likely to refer to the term “know.” ”(For example“ I don’t know ”) in the comment on plastic packaging during the same period.
The analysis also found that people were unsure of regulations on how things should be recycled (eg local councils). With statements including “the advice of the board is unclear” and “my current scarecrow is the recycling advice on a lot of currently non-recyclable plastic packaging”.
This new guide has been designed so that consumers can easily identify symbols, know what they mean and whether products can be recycled or not.