Kyungeun Sung organised the upcycling practitioners’ workshop with 12 practitioners at SOAS University of London on 9th of March. Professor Rebecca Earley from the University of the Arts London and Jamie Billing from Plymouth College of Art gave keynote speeches.
Jonathan Norman has published a new paper in Resources, Conservation & Recycling. Read the paper here.
The steel industry is the world’s largest industrial source of CO2 emissions. Recent UK economic policies have led to reduced domestic steel production giving an apparent reduction in national emissions. However, demand for goods made from steel has not reduced. Emissions have thus been transferred not reduced and implementation of UK climate policies may in future expand this ‘carbon leakage.’ This paper explores how future UK demand for goods made from steel might be supplied while satisfying national climate policies, and how this will influence global CO2 emissions. Current flows and stocks of steel are estimated from existing databases. Evidence from other developed economies suggests that per capita stocks are tending towards a saturation level so future demand is forecast from population growth and the expected rate of replacement of a stable stock. The carbon intensities of five different steel-making routes are used to predict the allowed scale of future domestic steel production within the industrial emissions allowances set in four energy pathways defined by the UK Government. The remaining requirement for steel must be sourced offshore and the associated emissions are predicted, to give an estimate of the global emissions arising from final demand in the UK. The results show that current UK climate strategy may have a limited effect in reducing the CO2 emissions of the global steel industry, unless the UK shifts towards producing more of its own steel products with domestic secondary steel-making. This option would also increase the security of UK supply and support an expansion of UK manufacturing.
Jannik Giesekam presented at a CIRIA Event addressing ‘Advances in innovative sustainable materials’. This event was designed to reconsider what is meant by sustainable building materials and showcase a number of new and emerging technologies and methods for construction products and materials.
Is Britain really using far less food, fuel, metals and materials now than at the turn of the century? Have we reached “peak stuff”? Certainly the UK Office of National Statistics figures for 2000-2013 seem to suggest this is the case. The problem is that these figures don’t take into account the full range of materials that went into the products we import.
CIE-MAP Director John Barrett gave evidence to the Commons Select Committee for Energy and Climate Change on 1st March on ‘Setting the fifth carbon budget’.
Professor Barrett (of the University of Leeds) joined by Richard Leese (Mineral Products Association), Lawrence Slade (EnergyUK), Philip Sellwood (Energy Saving Trust) and Nina Skorupska (Renewable Energy Association).
Researchers from CIEMAP have been working with Arup to produce a progress update against the 2013 Green Construction Board Low Carbon Routemap for the Built Environment. The Routemap serves as a visual tool enabling stakeholders to understand the policies, actions and key decision points required to achieve the UK Government target of an 80% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in the built environment vs 1990 levels by 2050. The Routemap sets out actions, together with key performance indicators that can be used to deliver and measure progress in meeting the 2050 target. This 2015 update includes more recently available data and significant improvements to the consideration of capital (embodied) carbon. Overall the findings indicate towards an increase in built environment emitted carbon and a widening of the gap to the 50% sector reduction ambition by 2025. A significant transformation from the ongoing ‘status quo’ trajectory is urgently needed.
In a research visit to China, the Centre Director was invited to address senior policy makers from the Chinese Government and senior academics on the issue of “Consumption based emissions and their application to China”. The presentation is available here.
On the 20th – 21st October Anne Owen attended an OECD-UNEP Expert Workshop on demand-based measures of material flows. The meeting was held at the OECD in Paris and explored two different measurement methods for estimating raw materials embodied in international trade: a pure input-output based methodology using 3 different multi-regional input-output databases; and a hybrid methodology using the OECD Inter Country Input-Output database in combination with raw material coefficients. The purpose of the meeting was to provide expert advice on the most appropriate method for measuring demand-based material flows in an international context, to guide related work at the OECD, and to pave the way for a consensus among international organisations on the approach to use. As part of the whole systems analysis research undertaken as part of the CIEMAP work programme, we aim to develop a UK focused database that will allow calculation of the materials required to satisfy UK demand. The discussions and connections made at the workshop will help steer the data selected and development of the UK focused database.