When it comes to the climate crisis we seem to be bombarded with news on just how bad things are. Whether it’s in a national news programme or all over Twitter, it seems almost inescapable and can lead to eco-anxiety and the feeling that there’s nothing we can do. But there are good new stories that are easily missed, and here are 3 from the last week!
Cycling to the F1
Sustainability is quickly becoming one of the biggest topics in the sport of F1 which, for a sport that involves 20 petrol-powered cars driving around in circles using multiple sets of rubber tyres every weekend, seems like quite a challenge to achieve.
Unless it’s a city street track like Baku in Azerbaijan or Singapore, a lot of the race tracks are located miles outside of city centres and not always easy to travel to. The Zandvoort track is located just outside the town of Zandvoort, just over 30km from Amsterdam, making it one of the easier race tracks to travel to.
Race organisers wanted to make this the most sustainable race on the F1 calendar and getting supporters to the track in the most efficient and cleanest way possible. With Zandvoort only being a town of 17,000 people, getting over 100,000 supporters to the track meant that roads would need to be closed to avoid huge traffic jams and alternative forms of transport would be required. Fleets of electric buses were put on to take people to the circuit and there was a train running every 5 minutes to and from Amsterdam, maximising public transport usage.
But in true Dutch fashion, the use of bicycles dominated the method of transport with an estimated 45,000 people cycling to and from the Grand Prix event. Check out just what the bicycle parks looked like!
Pulling Out of the ECT
You may well not have heard of the ECT, I admit that it was new to me. However, its having a major impact on the ability of governments to pass laws and regulations that would see cuts in carbon emissions and significant improvements to the environment. The Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) allows fossil fuel companies to sue governments over things like coal phase-outs, fracking and stopping new oil licenses in the shadows and away from public view, even though it often leads to payouts funded by the taxpayer!
Whilst a number of EU nations have either left or previously stated their intention to leave the treaty, the UK has long avoided conversation on this and continued to remain within the treaty. Only us and Japan are still part of the ECT although the UK has now threatened to leave without major reform. Hopefully that means any ability to sue governments would be removed but its an encouraging sign that the few that remain are looking to make an exit!
Recycling Wagamama Uniforms
Billions of tonnes of textiles goes to waste each year with just 2% being recycled, its a waste stream that urgently needs more recycling opportunities to be made widely available. Staff uniforms are just one part of the waste, but with staff turnover, company rebranding and the replacement of old uniforms, they can be quite a large part.
In an attempt to reduce the amount of waste they produce as a company, Wagamama are now working in partnership with Pangaia to recycle staff uniforms and turn them into hoodies that will be made available to staff working at Wagamamas. This will help the company reduce the amount of waste it produces, costs and improve their environmental footprint!