On packaging recycling, EU aims to close the loop | EURACTIV.com


Not all recycling is equal. As the European Commission prepares to revise the EU’s packaging waste directive, policymakers want to remove degradation and waste from the process.

As consumers, when we put our recycling bags in the bin or out on the street, that’s the last we hear of them. We trust that the effort we’ve taken to sort and dispose of our waste means that this material will be recycled and used in another product.

But that’s not always how it works.

How effective the recycling is depends on how closed the recycling loop is.

Source: On packaging recycling, EU aims to close the loop – EURACTIV.com

Green jobs and the green transition: A long, bumpy but exciting journey | EURACTIV.com


The green transition will profoundly impact Europe’s labour markets. While a few regions will be exposed to job losses in fossil fuel-reliant sectors like coal mining, the energy transition will keep generating demand for low- and medium-skilled roles, write Maroš Šefčovič and Bertrand Piccard.

Maroš Šefčovič is vice-president of the European Commission in charge of interinstitutional relations and foresight. Bertrand Piccard is the initiator behind Solar Impulse, the very first airplane capable of flying perpetually without fuel

It was not so long ago that the notion of an ecological transition remained intangible. We were unsure what it would look like or what it would require. All that has changed.

Source: Green jobs and the green transition: A long, bumpy but exciting journey – EURACTIV.com

Europe proposes mandatory due diligence to stop deforestation in supply chains | EURACTIV.com


The European Commission tabled its plan on Wednesday (17 November) to introduce mandatory due diligence for products sold on the EU market to make sure they are not linked to deforestation or forest degradation.

Europe is one of the biggest importers of global deforestation, second only to China. In 2017, the EU was responsible for 16% of deforestation associated with international trade, according to WWF.

“EU demand for commodities like palm oil, soy, wood, beef, cocoa and coffee are strong drivers of deforestation. More and more citizens want us to put an end to this,” EU climate chief Frans Timmermans said as he unveiled the legislation.

Source: Europe proposes mandatory due diligence to stop deforestation in supply chains – EURACTIV.com

Europe cracks down on illegal waste exports, eases intra-EU trade | EURACTIV.com


The European Commission put forward new rules on Wednesday (17 November) to crack down on the illegal shipment of waste to foreign countries, while easing procedures to trade recycled materials within the EU’s borders.

The proposed rules, which still need approval from EU countries and the European parliament, are part of Brussels’ plan to reduce pollution and ensure that materials like plastic, textiles and metals are reused and recycled, rather than thrown away.

Source: Europe cracks down on illegal waste exports, eases intra-EU trade – EURACTIV.com

EU plans single database to certify carbon content of hydrogen, low-carbon fuels | EURACTIV.com


The European Commission is preparing to launch an EU-wide database to certify the carbon footprint of hydrogen and other low-carbon fuels in a harmonized way.

The carbon certification of hydrogen production – currently 96% reliant on fossil fuels – is seen as crucial to introduce some transparency and traceability in the emerging EU market for low-carbon fuels.

To achieve this, the Commission is planning an EU-wide database, which is due to be unveiled in December as part of a package of EU laws aimed at decarbonizing the gas sector.

Source: EU plans single database to certify carbon content of hydrogen, low-carbon fuels – EURACTIV.com

Down in a hole: Bosnia miners fear green revolution | EURACTIV.com


For years, life in Bosnia’s Breza revolved around its coal mine, but the global shift from fossil fuels to renewables threatens the industry that was once the pride of communist Yugoslavia.

Armel Jekalovic and other miners, once hailed as local heroes who brought home steady incomes, now fear theirs could be the last generation to earn a living from Bosnia’s coalfields.

“This situation around the energy transition worries us,” says Jekalovic, 36, who oversees the operations at the mine northwest of Sarajevo.

“Production is constantly decreasing, as are the number of employees. People don’t feel safe and are looking for an alternative.”

Source: Down in a hole: Bosnia miners fear green revolution – EURACTIV.com

Heating homes with hydrogen fails on economic and climate merit: report | EURACTIV.com


As homeowners across Europe worry about the fate of their ageing gas boilers, some have pinned their hopes on switching them to hydrogen – but this may not be the way forward, a new study suggests.

The new ’12 Insights on Hydrogen’ report published by German think-tank Agora Energiewende gives a closer look at the “enormous hype” around hydrogen over past two years and tries to determine whether it is here to stay.

“The role of hydrogen for climate neutrality is crucial but secondary to direct electrification,” write the authors, who forecast that hydrogen will account for 16-25% of final energy demand in Europe by 2050.

Source: Heating homes with hydrogen fails on economic and climate merit: report – EURACTIV.com

Dreams are a precious resource. Don’t let advertisers hack them | Aeon Essays


Advertisers have begun invading our sleep in an attempt to place their products in our dreams. This is neither metaphor nor fiction; it’s a fact. The night before Super Bowl LV, the beverage company Molson Coors ran what they called the ‘world’s largest dream study’. They explicitly aimed to place images of Coors beer, along with positive imagery (of refreshing alpine rivers, for instance), into dreamers’ minds. They hired a Harvard psychologist to design dream-incubation stimuli, incentivised participation with offers of free drinks, and, in a marketing coup, had the pop star Zayn Malik agree to sleep on Instagram Live while having an incubated Coors dream – though he did mention the whole project was ‘kinda messed up’.

Source: Dreams are a precious resource. Don’t let advertisers hack them | Aeon Essays

ISS escapes space debris collision after Russian weapons test destroys satellite | Vox


Russia shot down one of its Soviet-era satellites in a weapons test on Monday, sending more than 1,500 pieces of trackable debris into space. This forced astronauts on the International Space Station to shelter for about two hours in two spacecraft that could return them to Earth in the event of an imminent collision. While the ISS appears to be in the clear for now, experts say the situation is still dangerous. Satellite operators will likely need to navigate around this new cloud of space junk for several years and possibly decades.

In fact, Russia’s latest missile test may have increased the total amount of space junk, including discarded pieces of rockets and satellites in Earth’s orbit, by as much as 10 percent.

Source: ISS escapes space debris collision after Russian weapons test destroys satellite – Vox

VIDEO | Don’t miss Lake Kawaguchiko’s fantastic fall foliage


If you still haven’t made a daytrip to check out the vivid colors, heading to the Fuji Five Lakes in Yamanashi Pref. might be a great option you and your entire group will enjoy.

Fuji Kawaguchiko Town is only about a two-hour drive from most U.S. military bases in the Kanto Plain. This year its annual Momiji Matsuri, an autumn foliage festival, is back on until Nov. 23.

Source: VIDEO| Don’t miss Lake Kawaguchiko’s fantastic fall foliage