What we learned this week

Great to see the Climate Change Committee – the UK government’s official climate advisors – recommend a frequent flyer levy this week. This is something I’ve written about before, it has a well thought out campaign in afreeride.org, and it’s moving forward as an idea.

The Scottish parliament voted unanimously for a 2045 net zero carbon target this week, five years faster than the rest of the UK.

130 banks announced this week that they are going to align their businesses with the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals. I don’t know what this will mean in practice and if it will involve divestment from fossil fuels, but it’s certainly welcome.

You may remember that earlier this year the High Court ruled that arms sales to Saudi Arabia were illegal. Since they could be used in human rights abuses, the government could not authorise any further sales. Defence exports have apparently carried on “inadvertently”, and the government still invited Saudi Arabia to the international arms fair last week.

The HERU, a hybrid boiler that gasifies household waste to generate domestic hot water, has published its first results. It’s a technology I’ve got an eye on as it’s so unusual, though I still can’t work out if it’s a mainstream or a niche solution.

Speaking of technologies to watch, nuclear fusion is definitely in the top five things I’d most like to be wrong about, and the Fully Charged Show has a fascinating episode on the company First Light.

1 comment

  1. For instance, on the road map, NASA reports it’s still working to determine the dose limits of radiation an astronaut can receive before getting seriously sick, and determining what, overall, this radiation does to an astronaut’s immune system. It also doesn’t know the probability that an astronaut will be sterilized (made unable to have children) in spaceflight. They don’t know how much radiation contributes to bone loss. Does radiation in space cause or worsen neurological diseases ? That’s another gap.

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