Emerging tech critical to manufacturers embracing the Circular Economy whilst facing big industry challenges – Sage study

Read the full story at The Manufacturer.

A new study by Sage, the leader in accounting, financial, HR and payroll technology for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), has revealed the significant hurdles faced by manufacturers and distributors shifting to a sustainable Circular Economy business strategy, despite widespread acknowledgement of the many benefits it will deliver.

Photographers don’t (always) harm bird nesting behavior

Read the full story from Treehugger.

The newfound interest in bird-watching and bird photography might be great for human mental health and social distancing. But scientists have been concerned about how all this up-close observation is affecting birds in their nests.

New research finds they didn’t have to worry as much as they thought.

Depave Chicago joins national movement to reclaim paradise from parking lots: ‘It’s really about a transformation’

Read the full story from WTTW.

A grassroots “depaving” movement that originated in Portland, Oregon, is slowly spreading across the country, with communities ripping up strips of asphalt and concrete to make way for pocket parks, gardens and nature play spaces. Affiliates of Depave Portland have popped up in cities like Detroit, Cleveland and Nashville, forming a loose network that is now being joined by Chicago.

Mary Pat McGuire, associate professor of landscape architecture at the University of Illinois, is leading the Chicago program under the umbrella of her Water Lab.

Webinar: What still challenges us to detect microplastics and nanoplastics in the environment?

Nov 10, 2022, noon CST
Register here.

Microplastics have been identified in many aquatic environments and are considered as sources and transport vectors for toxic chemicals (e.g., heavy metals and POPs) or pathogenic microorganisms. In our research group, we have been investigating the colloidal properties and photochemical aging/weathering of microplastics as well as the release of potentially toxic substances from the weathered microplastics. In this presentation, I will briefly introduce my own microplastic research and primarily focus on the introduction of challenges of microplastics and nanoplastics detection and identification due to their small sizes and interferences from size-dependent and extrinsic factors such as surface contamination or coating by organic matters or additives. I will also give an overview of the latest research results utilizing various of novel technologies/techniques for separation from environmental media (e.g., water or soil) and characterization. I will also introduce a few recent studies that demonstrated the use of scanning probe microscope, AFM combined with IR/Raman, sequential pyrolysis (Pyr-GC/MS) and thermal desorption pyrolysis (TD-Pyr-GC/MS) for ultrafine plastics particle analysis.

Speaker: Wen Zhang is currently an associate professor of NJIT’s Newark College of Engineering in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering with a second appointment in the Department of Chemical and Material Engineering. Wen is a licensed Professional Engineer (P.E.) registered in the States of New Jersey and Delaware. He is an American Academy of Environmental Engineers and Scientists (AAEES) Board Certified Environmental Engineer (BCEE). Dr. Wen Zhang’s research focuses on colloidal interfaces and processes that are crucial for environmental and chemical engineering applications. His research embraces environmental behavior and interfacial processes for nanomaterials, microplastics and soft particles such as microbes and bubbles, catalytic/reactive membrane filtration systems for desalination, resource recovery and emerging contaminant removal, photocatalysis, microalgal removal and harvesting. His lastest research also expands from agricultural applications of nanobubbles to lithium recovery from spent lithium ion batteries.

University receives £220,000 from UK Government for hydrogen research

Read the full story in Circular.

The University of Aberdeen’s School of Engineering has been awarded £220,000 in funding from the UK Government for a project that aims to create a new process to obtain hydrogen from organic waste as part of the energy transition.

Collision course: Will the plastics treaty slow the plastics rush?

Read the full story in The Revelator.

A massive new plastics plant will soon start operating in Pennsylvania, even as support grows for international limits on plastic production.

How local governments and communities are taking action to get fossil fuels out of buildings

Read the full story from the Rocky Mountain Institute.

Across the United States, 80 cities and counties have adopted policies that require or encourage the move off fossil fuels to all-electric homes and buildings. As of August 2022, nearly 28 million people across 11 states live in a jurisdiction where local policies favor fossil fuel-free, healthy buildings. And the momentum behind these policies keeps building — dozens more local governments have strong commitments to decarbonize their buildings stock, which will soon become formal policy.

A car ban will improve the state of the climate, but is it ableist?

Read the full story at Treehugger.

Recently, I sent an appreciative tweet about fellow Treehugger Lloyd Alter’s argument for banning cars from our cities as a means to reduce the urban heat island effect. But a minute after I sent out my tweet, I noticed a Twitter friend of mine discussing some strangely familiar language. 

Car bans, she said, were ableist and marginalizing, and the environmental movement could probably do better. It was a point worthy of discussion, so I sent it further out into the world.  

Leadership lessons for a career in sustainability

Read the full story at GreenBiz.

To have a long and impactful career in sustainability, flexibility, conviction, openness and planning are key.

60+ years of monitoring large river fishes in Illinois

Read the full story in Outdoor Illinois.

Survey and Assessment of Large-River fishes in Illinois (commonly referred to as LTEF for Long Term Electrofishing) has been tracking changes in the Illinois River fish community, water quality and habitat since 1957. Over the years, funding and program leadership has periodically changed, but monitoring has always been conducted by Illinois Natural History Survey (INHS) biologists out of Havana, Illinois, currently at the Illinois River Biological Station (IRBS). Since 1989, funding for the LTEF program is provided by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Federal Aid in Sportfish Restoration program.