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Economy

Countdown Begins For International Festival of Business 2016

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There are less than 30 days remaining before the start of the International Festival of Business 2016 (IFB2016). The countdown was announced at an exclusive roundtable event at BT Tower in London last week. Britain’s business leaders came together to mark the date.

The roundtable event featured an exhibition including and showcasing British businesses that epitomise the best of “Brand Britain”. They included:

– Balance Me: Family run start-up that has grown into a hugely successful premium, British-made natural skincare business over the last 10 years with results-focused formulas. The brand has won a legion of fans that include Oscar-winning actresses and British Olympians, amassing over 40 industry and media awards

– Brompton Bicycle: Run by IFB2016 ambassador Will Butler-Adams, Brompton designs, produces and globally distributes over 45,000 bikes each year from their UK factory. The company has grown from £2m turnover in 2002 to £33m and exports account for 80% of sales

– Candy Kittens: A gourmet sweets manufacturer founded by Made in Chelsea star Jamie Laing and Ed Williams. The business currently exports to more than 15 markets worldwide, including the US, Malta, Netherlands and Germany

– Cobra Beer: Founded by IFB2016 ambassador Lord Karan Bilimoria, Cobra Beer has grown into a global brand that exports to more than 40 countries and is produced in three locations worldwide

– Kymira: Established in 2013 in the renowned Science and Technology labs at the University of Reading, its combined team of Scientists and Sport’s enthusiasts has developed a range of performance and recovery enhancing sportswear that incorporates its unique, patented KYnergy infrared technology

– M Squared Lasers: One of the UK’s fastest-growing tech firms, the business produces innovative laser products that are used to do everything from treating cancer and developing regenerative medicines, to detecting chemical warfare agents and teleporting information. M Squared was awarded the Queen’s Award for Enterprise last month

Attendees were given an update on the plans for this world’s biggest business event by IFB2016 chair Max Steinberg, with the organisers spelling out what delegates can expect from the festival. Dr. Catherine Raines, CEO of UK Trade & Investment, set out the role IFB2016 will play in the government’s efforts to boost UK exports and encourage inward investment.

Max Steinberg CBE, Chair of IFB2016, said: “IFB2016 is a central part of Britain’s ambition to promote economic growth, rebalance the UK economy, and hit our ambitious exports targets.

“As a showcase of all that’s great about British industry, IFB2016 will shed light on the industries that are fueling the UK in the 21st Century, the businesses that are driving these sectors, and the future stars of British enterprise across Energy and Environment, Creative and Digital and Manufacturing.

“These are businesses that are thriving across the country – firms with the ambition and creativity that embody the spirit of Brand Britain that resonates around the globe. It’s this spirit that will be on full display in Liverpool in just 30 days’ time for the start of the International Festival for Business 2016.”

Dr. Catherine Raines, CEO of UK Trade & Investment, added: “The International Festival for Business 2016 will be the premier event of the business calendar this year and I am proud UK Trade & Investment is partnering with BT and Liverpool Vision on this opportunity.

“I am particularly excited by the UKTI programme, which will bring together UK companies of all sizes, experienced exporters and first timers with buyers and investors around world. From UK Food and drink businesses who want to build their e-commerce capabilities to global investors looking for oil and gas opportunities here in the UK – I am calling on all companies to attend by registering for the IFB2016 Business Club today.” 

Backed by HM Government, IFB2016 will open on Monday 13 June and run for three weeks. It will bring together thousands of global businesses, providing a platform for companies to connect and conduct international commerce.

BT, Google and HSBC are the lead sponsors of IFB2016, with the Festival’s commercial partners including ARUP, DLA Piper, DONG Energy, Heathrow, PwC, Siemens and Virgin Trains.

Economy

New Zealand to Switch to Fully Renewable Energy by 2035

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renewable energy policy
Shutterstock Licensed Photo - By Eviart / https://www.shutterstock.com/g/adrian825

New Zealand’s prime minister-elect Jacinda Ardern is already taking steps towards reducing the country’s carbon footprint. She signed a coalition deal with NZ First in October, aiming to generate 100% of the country’s energy from renewable sources by 2035.

New Zealand is already one of the greenest countries in the world, sourcing over 80% of its energy for its 4.7 million people from renewable resources like hydroelectric, geothermal and wind. The majority of its electricity comes from hydro-power, which generated 60% of the country’s energy in 2016. Last winter, renewable generation peaked at 93%.

Now, Ardern is taking on the challenge of eliminating New Zealand’s remaining use of fossil fuels. One of the biggest obstacles will be filling in the gap left by hydropower sources during dry conditions. When lake levels drop, the country relies on gas and coal to provide energy. Eliminating fossil fuels will require finding an alternative source to avoid spikes in energy costs during droughts.

Business NZ’s executive director John Carnegie told Bloomberg he believes Ardern needs to balance her goals with affordability, stating, “It’s completely appropriate to have a focus on reducing carbon emissions, but there needs to be an open and transparent public conversation about the policies and how they are delivered.”

The coalition deal outlined a few steps towards achieving this, including investing more in solar, which currently only provides 0.1% of the country’s energy. Ardern’s plans also include switching the electricity grid to renewable energy, investing more funds into rail transport, and switching all government vehicles to green fuel within a decade.

Zero net emissions by 2050

Beyond powering the country’s electricity grid with 100% green energy, Ardern also wants to reach zero net emissions by 2050. This ambitious goal is very much in line with her focus on climate change throughout the course of her campaign. Environmental issues were one of her top priorities from the start, which increased her appeal with young voters and helped her become one of the youngest world leaders at only 37.

Reaching zero net emissions would require overcoming challenging issues like eliminating fossil fuels in vehicles. Ardern hasn’t outlined a plan for reaching this goal, but has suggested creating an independent commission to aid in the transition to a lower carbon economy.

She also set a goal of doubling the number of trees the country plants per year to 100 million, a goal she says is “absolutely achievable” using land that is marginal for farming animals.

Greenpeace New Zealand climate and energy campaigner Amanda Larsson believes that phasing out fossil fuels should be a priority for the new prime minister. She says that in order to reach zero net emissions, Ardern “must prioritize closing down coal, putting a moratorium on new fossil fuel plants, building more wind infrastructure, and opening the playing field for household and community solar.”

A worldwide shift to renewable energy

Addressing climate change is becoming more of a priority around the world and many governments are assessing how they can reduce their reliance on fossil fuels and switch to environmentally-friendly energy sources. Sustainable energy is becoming an increasingly profitable industry, giving companies more of an incentive to invest.

Ardern isn’t alone in her climate concerns, as other prominent world leaders like Justin Trudeau and Emmanuel Macron have made renewable energy a focus of their campaigns. She isn’t the first to set ambitious goals, either. Sweden and Norway share New Zealand’s goal of net zero emissions by 2045 and 2030, respectively.

Scotland already sources more than half of its electricity from renewable sources and aims to fully transition by 2020, while France announced plans in September to stop fossil fuel production by 2040. This would make it the first country to do so, and the first to end the sale of gasoline and diesel vehicles.

Many parts of the world still rely heavily on coal, but if these countries are successful in phasing out fossil fuels and transitioning to renewable resources, it could serve as a turning point. As other world leaders see that switching to sustainable energy is possible – and profitable – it could be the start of a worldwide shift towards environmentally-friendly energy.

Sources: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-11-06/green-dream-risks-energy-security-as-kiwis-aim-for-zero-carbon

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-france-hydrocarbons/france-plans-to-end-oil-and-gas-production-by-2040-idUSKCN1BH1AQ

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Economy

How Going Green Can Save A Company Money

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going green can save company money
Shutterstock Licensed Photot - By GOLFX

What is going green?

Going green means to live life in a way that is environmentally friendly for an entire population. It is the conservation of energy, water, and air. Going green means using products and resources that will not contaminate or pollute the air. It means being educated and well informed about the surroundings, and how to best protect them. It means recycling products that may not be biodegradable. Companies, as well as people, that adhere to going green can help to ensure a safer life for humanity.

The first step in going green

There are actually no step by step instructions for going green. The only requirement needed is making the decision to become environmentally conscious. It takes a caring attitude, and a willingness to make the change. It has been found that companies have improved their profit margins by going green. They have saved money on many of the frivolous things they they thought were a necessity. Besides saving money, companies are operating more efficiently than before going green. Companies have become aware of their ecological responsibility by pursuing the knowledge needed to make decisions that would change lifestyles and help sustain the earth’s natural resources for present and future generations.

Making needed changes within the company

After making the decision to go green, there are several things that can be changed in the workplace. A good place to start would be conserving energy used by electrical appliances. First, turning off the computer will save over the long run. Just letting it sleep still uses energy overnight. Turn off all other appliances like coffee maker, or anything that plugs in. Pull the socket from the outlet to stop unnecessary energy loss. Appliances continue to use electricity although they are switched off, and not unplugged. Get in the habit of turning off the lights whenever you leave a room. Change to fluorescent light bulbs, and lighting throughout the building. Have any leaks sealed on the premises to avoid the escape of heat or air.

Reducing the common paper waste

paper waste

Shutterstock Licensed Photo – By Yury Zap

Modern technologies and state of the art equipment, and tools have almost eliminated the use of paper in the office. Instead of sending out newsletters, brochures, written memos and reminders, you can now do all of these and more by technology while saving on the use of paper. Send out digital documents and emails to communicate with staff and other employees. By using this virtual bookkeeping technique, you will save a bundle on paper. When it is necessary to use paper for printing purposes or other services, choose the already recycled paper. It is smartly labeled and easy to find in any office supply store. It is called the Post Consumer Waste paper, or PCW paper. This will show that your company is dedicated to the preservation of natural resources. By using PCW paper, everyone helps to save the trees which provides and emits many important nutrients into the atmosphere.

Make money by spreading the word

Companies realize that consumers like to buy, or invest in whatever the latest trend may be. They also cater to companies that are doing great things for the quality of life of all people. People want to know that the companies that they cater to are doing their part for the environment and ecology. By going green, you can tell consumers of your experiences with helping them and communities be eco-friendly. This is a sound public relations technique to bring revenue to your brand. Boost the impact that your company makes on the environment. Go green, save and make money while essentially preserving what is normally taken for granted. The benefits of having a green company are enormous for consumers as well as the companies that engage in the process.

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