The circular economy, a generic term for an economic model that aims to decouple growth from resource constraints through designing out waste by intention, was the subject of a parallel stream at Base London 2012. As reported previously, the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, with analysis from McKinsey & Co, has identified the circular economy could be worth between $340bn and $630bn per annum to the EU economy by 2025. Sustain Worldwide supports the movement and attended the session, hosted by the Aldersgate Group.
Speakers including Andrew Raingold, Executive Director, Aldersgate Group; Ed Metcalfe, Director, Institute for Sustainability: Cradle to cradle innovation zones and the London Sustainable Industries Park; Douwe Jan Joustra, Managing Partner, One Planet Architecture institute: Innovation in cities and enhancing local based circular economy initiatives; and Adam Elman, Head of Plan A Delivery, M&S, debated the opportunities a circular economic model presents at the micro level - for both individual cities and businesses – and aimed to identify opportunities to adopt a circular economy approach for London, based on the experiences of leading practitioners in the field.
Sustain Worldwide, in partnership with our India-based sustainability sector specialist partner SEnS, is planning a tailored business mission to Gujarat, India, from 8-13 January 2013. The trip is being timed to coincide with the biennial Vibrant Gujarat Summit (VGS). VGS is the country’s most dynamic b2b event, and will be attended by more than 10,000 delegates. Gujarat is India’s most progressive state, one in which economic activity is outperforming the prodigious national average. Gujarat outshines its peers in offering uninterrupted power supply, state-wide gas grid, rich gas reserves, extensive road and rail network and airports which makes it conducive for all types of investments to thrive.
Those joining the Sustain Worldwide and SEnS hosted mission, which will be limited to 8 non-competing participants, will receive senior level introductions to companies seeking British and European partners with specialist sustainability knowledge and services. One-to-one meetings and group networking events will be arranged for you to forge new business opportunities, build partnerships, impart best practice, share knowledge and develop supply chains. Delegates will be assisted to identify potential customers or partners and to arrange meetings with them prior to leaving the UK. Delegates will also have the time and opportunity to pursue their own contacts. For further information about how to join the delegation, the outline programme, and indicative costs, contact Gordon@SustainWorldwide.com.
Sustain Worldwide delivers tangible results for European Premium Member
Sustain Worldwde is in discussions with representatives of the EEN to provide business development, communications, and educational services to European companies seeking to enter or develop their business in the UK’s construction, clean tech and sustainability sectors. You can download a Case Study detailing how Sustain Worldwide Premium Membership has delivered tangible results in the areas of communications, education and business development for Italian HVAC and HPAC market leader Climaveneta.
INNOVATION & EDUCATION
SLIPS when (not) wet
A novel coating that repels almost every type of liquid and solid - from blood and crude oil, to ice and bacteria - has received a 2012 R&D 100 Award from R&D Magazine. The winning technology, called SLIPS (Slippery Liquid-Infused Porous Surfaces), was developed by a team of scientists from the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University and from Harvard's School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS). Wyss' Adaptive Materials Technologies platform aims to change the world by emulating the way Nature solves problems. The institute does not take products to market but works with commercial partners to license the innovations.
Ecoining it in
Ecoinomy is an innovative for profit (but not just for profit) online social venture that helps companies to make a difference to their environmental impact, to their communities and also to their own efficiency. Backed by Dragons' Den’s Deborah Meaden, employees collect for causes; funded by taking actions that make the company less wasteful in economic as well as environmental terms. The online systems track the value of their savings and calculates the net CO2 saving. Each employee has their own individual user dashboard that keeps count of what they have claimed. They also choose which Cause to join (resembling Facebook groups), which allow people to join together to save.
Pyramids may hold clue to more efficient solar cells performance
A team at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has found a new approach to maximize power output while minimizing silicon usage that could reduce the thickness of the silicon required by more than 90% while still maintaining high efficiency. The ‘secret’ lies in a pattern of tiny inverted pyramids etched into the surface of the silicon. These tiny indentations, each less than a millionth of a meter across, can trap rays of light as effectively as conventional solid silicon surfaces that are 30 times thicker. If the theory holds up in practice it would rduce the cost of production significantly while also increasing efficiencies and therefore outputs.
Sustain Worldwide builds global partnerships
Sustain Worldwide, in addition to organsing a delegation to visit Gujarat, India, continues to forge closer working relationships with representatives of organisations in China (China UKTI and RHS), Brazil (Sustainable Hub) and sub-Saharan Africa (Consortium Africa). The ambition is to open up new business openings e.g. to supply knowledge, technical services, and to generate development opportunities for Sustain Worldwide members and broader alliance in each of the emerging markets.
Members' news in brief
Climaveneta has developed an exclusive air conditioning system for the new Warsaw National Stadium that will host the semi-finals of the 2012 UEFA European Football Championship (Euro 2012). The project is the latest in a broad portfolio of sports stadia installations.
Medina Palms reports works are now underway for the expansion of the water supply pipeline into Watamu. A new pipeline comprising a larger 14 inch diameter pipe has now reached Timboni, near Watamu. The project has been funded by the Government of Kenya and is expected to ease water supply problems into the area, supporting environmentally sensitive tourism.
MGM French Property reports that the number of sales achieved by the London sales office in the first four months of 2012 exceeds the total for the whole of 2011. Sales manager Richard Deans said: “Increasingly Britons are regarding the properties they can buy in the French Alps as better value for money than they perceived a couple of years ago and they are acting accordingly.”
What does innovation through sustainability mean to you? Our understanding of innovation through sustainability is reaching out for ways to adjust our working practices, educate our clients and increase our understanding of sustainability from a practical and theoretical perspective.
How important is sustainability to your company’s philosophy, strategy and practices? Sustainability is extremely important within our space. With clients throughout the world we are constantly seeking alternative methods to communicate which reduces our travel. Within the creative sector we can implement simple practices such as using sustainable resources for the production of our work. If we can demonstrate to our clients and educate them about sustainability we are fulfilling our role as their marketing and creative agency.
What is the biggest sustainability challenge facing your company e.g. Supply chain, consumer buy in? Our biggest challenge is educating our clients that by using sustainable products in the marketing pieces that we produce that they are not necessarily more expensive, which is a common misconception. In addition within the current global financial situation we are in, our clients are reluctant to do business remotely and request we travel to see them.
What is the one sustainable aspect or feature in your business of which you are most proud? As a company we meet once a week to discuss how we can streamline our practices to become more sustainable, we adopt more online, digital experiences with our clients. All of our note taking is done digitally so that that our clients can share our experiences and collaborate on projects in real time.
In addition we are striving to produce products for our clients, for example, a money box for the Children at Variety, the children's charity which will be able to be constructed out of one piece of sustainable card, printed with sustainable inks. The concept is not only to reduce the number of elements to make it easier for the children but this also reduces the number of mechanical actions required to manufacture which also reduces the cost for the client.
Do you think developing sustainably is a moral imperative or a business decision – and are the two mutually exclusive? I feel that sustainability is both a moral imperative and business decision, if we can prove to our clients that through sustainability there are cost savings as well as a moral obligations we are fulfilling our role within our space.
What would encourage your company to strive for even higher sustainability aspirations e.g. Corporate social responsibility, tax breaks, consumer demand? Naturally any incentives will increase the number of businesses and people adopting more sustainable practices, consumer demand will drive traffic to us in the same way. My concern is that due to the recession our clients from a production perspective want the cheapest solution which may not always be the most sustainable, and as a small and growing business we cannot afford to turn away the work.
If you had a super power what would you use it for – within a sustainability context? I would educate everyone on the power of the bicycle as a mode of transport!
Sustain Worldwide drives profitable sustainability to the heart of global property development. Join our exclusive alliance to: demonstrate your leadership qualities; access our extended and expanding business, technical support, and communications & marketing network; receive gratis invitations to Sustain Worldwide hosted seminars, conferences and networking events; gain independent endorsement (use of Sustain Worldwide logo) to underpin your corporate sustainability initiatives and enhance your business reputation. See www.sustainworldwide.com/join.html or call +44 (0)20 7754 5557.