Tag Archive for: renewable energy

Last minute opportunity at the Oxford Spring School in Ecological Enonomics

One extra place is available at the Oxford Spring School in Ecological Economics to take place 24 – 30 March 2019, the deadline has been extended until 31 January 2019.
Mr Marco Lambertini, Director General of WWF will be giving a special talk at the School to take place at St Hilda’s College, Oxford. This year the School is devoted to Green Economy for Countries, Cities and Regions: Ecosystems, Economy, Policy. The programme includes interventions from The Club of Rome, Sustainable Europe Research Institute The Open University, Imperial College London, Autonomous University of Barcelona, Institute of Sustainable Development Strategies and Environment Europe.

DG Marco Lambertini (WWF), Prof. Joachim Spangenberg (SERI), Dr Stanislav Shmelev (Environment Europe Ltd), Prof. Herbert Girardet (The Club of Rome), Prof. Dave Elliott (The Open University), Prof. Erik Gomez-Baggethun (University of Life Sciences, Norway), Prof. Victoria Hurth (Plymouth University), Dr. Stanislava Boscovich (Imperial College London), Prof. Irina Shmeleva (Institute of Sustainable Development Strategies) have confirmed their participation in the School.

The School will take place at St Hilda’s College, Oxford and will address key elements of the green economy transformation with a particular focus on ecosystems, economy and policy, exploring the cutting edge methods and policy applications in ecological economics. With a clear sustainable development focus, it will draw on the expertise of a range of disciplines: economics, ecology, physics, environmental sciences, finance, politics, international relations, sociology, psychology, complex systems theory, etc. to address the current challenges: climate change, biodiversity loss, resource depletion, water shortages, social cohesion and achieving sustainability.
The course will be composed of theoretical and applied modules and will address the key elements of the environment-economy interaction: the foundations of ecological economics, methodological approaches of input-output analysis, multi-criteria decision aid, ecological conflicts around the world, regenerative cities, smart cities, sustainable transport, sustainable urbanism, renewable energy, urban planning, ecosystem services and case studies from around the world. The Summer School will feature interactive simulation games.
The course is designed for multiple points of entry and could be helpful for PhD students, government experts, representatives of international organizations and business. The course will give participants an opportunity to explore key methodologies for ecological-economic analysis and to apply these to various case studies.
Oxford Summer, Winter and Spring Schools in Ecological Economics organized by Environment Europe attracted participants from  53 countries, including Canada, USA, Mexico, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Argentina, UK, France, Germany, Austria, Switzeland, Spain, Italy, Malta, Portugal, Belgium, the Netherlands, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Denmark, Sweden, Iceland, Norway, Serbia, Bosnia, Croatia, Albania, Latvia, Ghana, Nigeria, Jordan, Lebanon, Sri Lanka, China, India, Bhutan, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Philippines, and Australia, including representatives of UNEP, UNDP, IUCN, OECD, ILO, DEFRA staff, NGOs, academia and business, including Shell and Deloitte.

Microplastics and circular economy, the challanges of the Mediterranean media

Two days and five sessions of work were held with scientists and journalists to discuss the energy transition of the Mediterranean region, the circular economy and combatting plastic pollution. The program has been completed with two sessions dedicated to initiatives and tools for the journalistic profession, and to debating and exchanging experiences between professionals.
Around 50 environmental journalists and scientists from 20 countries in the Mediterranean basin, researchers, experts, NGOs, and international institutions attended the 3rd Meeting of Environmental Journalists of Mediterranean News Agencies, held at the UfM headquarters, in Barcelona, Spain (13th and 14th Novamber).
The event has been promoted by the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), in collaboration with the Alliance of Mediterranean News Agencies (AMAN) and EFEverde of the EFE Agency.

As part of the activities, journalists, scientists and experts paid a visit to the Switchmed Connect’s exhibition on “The Circular Economy in the Mediterranean region”. The exhibition showcased impactful stories from the SwitchMed programme, an initiative that supports and connects stakeholders to scale-up social and eco innovations in the Mediterranean.

“Our ocean plays such a critical role in our economy, and the Mediterranean is both a tourism and conservation hotspot filled with rich biodiversity. We cannot afford to continue turning our ocean into a vast, contaminated plastic soup”, highlighted Antonio Troya, director of the IUCN Centre for Mediterranean Cooperation.

“The Mediterranean is one of the most vulnerable regions in the world to the effects of climate change and environmental degradation. Promoting a collective response from the countries of the region to these challenges is at the heart of the Union for the Mediterranean’s mandate”, said Jorge Borrego, UfM Senior Deputy Secretary-General for Energy and Climate Action. George Penintaex, Secretary General of the Alliance of Mediterranean News Agencies (AMAN) and Arturo Larena, Director of EFE Verde at the EFE News Agency, also addressed the audience at the opening session.

The leit motiv across all the work sessions was that of plastics and microplastics in the sea, the tip of an iceberg that everyone sees and whose consequences are easily understood even by the general public.

The challenge of the energy transition, focusing on the role of renewable resources and energy efficiency, also for its social consequences, was the theme of the first and second round table discussions. Among the best practices presented: the Plastic Buster project that analyzes how waste affects marine life, the film A plastic Ocean. On the subject of microplastics Marie-Aude Sevin, IUCN expert on the marine program dedicated to plastics presented the site marplasticcs.org in which are gathered resources, best practices, events and other useful information on the topic of microplastics. Lucile Courtial of the Prince Albert Foundation in Monaco presented Beyond Plastic Med, a network of stakeholders connected with the objective of collecting data and giving concrete and sustainable solutions to the problem of marine pollution.
The meeting was also an opportunity to compare policy-makers, consumers and the plastics industry and to present useful initiatives and tools for disseminators and journalists on the issues of pollution and science. For example, Patrick Wegerdt of the European Commission DG Environment pointed out that we are moving towards a 100% recyclable plastic and that 50% of waste at sea is made up of disposable plastic objects. The video “Are you eating plastic for dinner?” can be an interesting example of how plastic negatively affects our lives and our health. How to build a society without plastic? From this provocative question Jesus Iglesisas (Ecopreneurs for the Climate) started to explain how the problem of plastic is above all social “the alternatives exist – he said – but we must start from a radical change of habits” in which the key words are inclusion, cooperation, sustainability. The climateinnovation.city site presents events, actors and workers in this direction.

This initiative wants to establish a network of communicators and journalists,  a meeting point where to exchange opinions and discussions. In addition, this event facilitates direct access to important sources of environmental information in both scientific and political areas, as well as aspects of management.

The two previous meetings in Málaga (2015) and Marrakech (2016) enabled the consolidation of this network of communicators, and resulted in several important outcomes including; the publication titled “A journalist’s guide on environmental information”, the launch of the MAP Ecology section as part of the Moroccan News Agency, and the creation of the online platform medgreenjournalism.net to foster networking of environmental journalists across the Mediterranean.