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Economy

We have lift off: 108% growth in readership

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Blue & Green towers has been buzzing as we look back at September. We took off again with more than twice as many people reading us as did in August. Thank you, to each and every one of you, new readers and old.

Please don’r forget to sign up to our newsletter, follow us on twitter and like us on Facebook.

This is what you/they read in September. The wisdom of the Blue & Green crowd:

Scottish Air Pollution Death Toll Almost Double Previous Estimates

As revealed in yesterday’s Sunday Herald the number of people being killed of by air pollution every year in Scotland may be nearly twice what was previously thought. Read more.

On this day 1935: Hoover Dam dedication ceremony

The Hoover dam was built between 1931 and 1936 and dedicated on September 30 1935, by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Controversially named after President Herbert Hoover (Boulder Dam was the project’s name) the construction cost 112 lives and involved thousands of workers. Read more.

TUC Congress: Unions to consider change of voting system for UK elections

Trade unions have made a major step today in agreeing to consider electoral reform, just two days after the election of Jeremy Corbyn as the new Labour leader. Read more.

B Corp UK launches to redefine success in business

Today sees the launch of the B Corp community in the UK.  This is a global movement that is redefining success in business. 61 companies have now been awarded B Corp status in the UK – representing the biggest initial community of certified B Corps yet seen globally. Read more.

Kickstarter is now a Benefit Corporation

Crowdfunding platform Kickstarter Inc. has re-incorporated as a Public Benefit Corporation. In their announcement they say they’re spelt out exactly what it means. Read more.

Good Money Week: Money for Positive Change (03 Oct)

This event has been organised by the Church of Scotland’s Society, Religion and Technology Project. The event hopes to provide you with an opportunity to consider how your faith, values and finances interact and how you, and your Church, can make positive decisions about how your money is used in the future. Read more.

Scientists alarmed by ‘seismic blasting’ by oil industry in the Arctic Ocean

Firing seismic airguns to find new oil reserves in the Arctic Ocean is ‘alarming’ and could seriously injure whales and other marine life, according to a new scientific review. The oil industry is increasingly looking towards the region as climate change melts large areas of Arctic sea ice. Read more.

Emma Thompson joins Greenpeace celebration as Shell announce end of Arctic oil drilling

Emma Thompson joined Greenpeace UK Executive Director John Sauven to deliver a celebratory speech outside Shell’s London head offices this morning. Yesterday, the Anglo-Dutch oil major announced it was pulling out of Arctic oil drilling. Read more.

Dieselgate: other car manufacturers ‘on the same line’ as Volkswagen

The International Council on Clean Transportation issued a report in 2014, building on original findings in 2012 and 2013, saying the gaps between official and real-world fuel consumption and CO2 emissions “grow at an accelerated pace.” Read more.

“Biggest conservation commitment by any government ever.” UK Overseas Territories ‘Blue Belt’

Britain once ruled the waves and used its naval might to end the transatlantic slave trade. One of the positive legacies of that imperial past, is that Britain can take a lead in changing the world for the better – creating the world’s largest marine protected areas around our Overseas Territories – the Blue Belt. Read more.

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Economy

A Good Look At How Homes Will Become More Energy Efficient Soon

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energy efficient homes

Everyone always talks about ways they can save energy at home, but the tactics are old school. They’re only tweaking the way they do things at the moment. Sealing holes in your home isn’t exactly the next scientific breakthrough we’ve been waiting for.

There is some good news because technology is progressing quickly. Some tactics might not be brand new, but they’re becoming more popular. Here are a few things you should expect to see in homes all around the country within a few years.

1. The Rise Of Smart Windows

When you look at a window right now it’s just a pane of glass. In the future they’ll be controlled by microprocessors and sensors. They’ll change depending on the specific weather conditions directly outside.

If the sun disappears the shade will automatically adjust to let in more light. The exact opposite will happen when it’s sunny. These energy efficient windows will save everyone a huge amount of money.

2. A Better Way To Cool Roofs

If you wanted to cool a roof down today you would coat it with a material full of specialized pigments. This would allow roofs to deflect the sun and they’d absorb less heat in the process too.

Soon we’ll see the same thing being done, but it will be four times more effective. Roofs will never get too hot again. Anyone with a large roof is going to see a sharp decrease in their energy bills.

3. Low-E Windows Taking Over

It’s a mystery why these aren’t already extremely popular, but things are starting to change. Read low-E window replacement reviews and you’ll see everyone loves them because they’re extremely effective.

They’ll keep heat outside in summer or inside in winter. People don’t even have to buy new windows to enjoy the technology. All they’ll need is a low-E film to place over their current ones.

4. Magnets Will Cool Fridges

Refrigerators haven’t changed much in a very long time. They’re still using a vapor compression process that wastes energy while harming the environment. It won’t be long until they’ll be cooled using magnets instead.

The magnetocaloric effect is going to revolutionize cold food storage. The fluid these fridges are going to use will be water-based, which means the environment can rest easy and energy bills will drop.

5. Improving Our Current LEDs

Everyone who spent a lot of money on energy must have been very happy when LEDs became mainstream. Incandescent light bulbs belong in museums today because the new tech cut costs by up to 85 percent.

That doesn’t mean someone isn’t always trying to improve on an already great invention. The amount of lumens LEDs produce per watt isn’t great, but we’ve already found a way to increase it by 25 percent.

Maybe Homes Will Look Different Too

Do you think we’ll come up with new styles of homes that will take off? Surely it’s not out of the question. Everything inside homes seems to be changing for the better with each passing year. It’s going to continue doing so thanks to amazing inventors.

ShutterStock – Stock photo ID: 613912244

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Economy

IEMA Urge Government’s Industrial Strategy Skills Overhaul To Adopt A “Long View Approach”

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IEMA, in response to the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, have welcomed the focus on technical skills and education to boost “competence and capability” of tomorrow’s workforce.

Policy experts at the world’s leading professional association of Environment and Sustainability professionals has today welcomed Prime Minister Teresa May’s confirmation that an overhaul of technical education and skills will form a central part of the Plan for Britain – but warns the strategy must be one for the long term.

Martin Baxter, Chief Policy Advisor at IEMA said this morning that the approach and predicted investment in building a stronger technical skills portfolio to boost the UK’s productivity and economic resilience is positive, and presents an opportunity to drive the UK’s skills profile and commitment to sustainability outside of the EU.

Commenting on the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, Baxter said today:

“Government must use the Industrial Strategy as an opportunity to accelerate the UK’s transition to a low-carbon, resource efficient economy – one that is flexible and agile and which gives a progressive outlook for the UK’s future outside the EU.

We welcome the focus on skills and education, as it is vital that tomorrow’s workforce has the competence and capability to innovate and compete globally in high-value manufacturing and leading technology.

There is a real opportunity with the Industrial Strategy, and forthcoming 25 year Environment Plan and Carbon Emissions Reduction Plan, to set long-term economic and environmental outcomes which set the conditions to unlock investment, enhance natural capital and provide employment and export opportunities for UK business.

We will ensure that the Environment and Sustainability profession makes a positive contribution in responding to the Green Paper.”

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