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News round-up 26/3

New kit investment for testing; Car maker confirms aluminium commitment; Euro-shoppers prefer paper; Backing for sustainable designers

New kit investment for testing

Environmental testing lab ESG has completed its investment in new kit to prepare for the green energy market.

ESG carries out environmental inspection, testing and compliance services and has seen testing in its lab for coal drop by 53% over the past ten years.

The company is anticipating a further increase in biomass and solid recovered fuel work, which has lead it to invest more than £500,000 in kit.

ESG, energy services operations director Jim Clay said: “We have seen a steady decline in the amount of coal being tested over the past 10 years due to the rate at which deep mines have closed, as well as other factors such as the fall in international gas prices - which has driven down energy generation using coal.

“As the first laboratory in the UK to gain extensive accreditation for the analysis of solid biofuels and solid recovered fuels, we have long been aware of the need for a low carbon alternative to reduce carbon emissions and the dependency on fossil fuels such as coal.”

Press release

Car maker confirms aluminium commitment

Jaguar Land Rover, above, has reaffirmed its long-term commitment to the West Midlands, with confirmation of a £600m investment in the region to support product creation and advanced vehicle manufacturing.

The package includes the previously announced £320m aluminium body shop - the largest single investment in the history of the company’s Castle Bromwich site.

£16m has been spent on a new blanker line which will allow the plant to turn coils of aluminium into ‘blank sheets’ that will be pressed into body panels and parts on a new Aida £50m press line which is currently under construction.

Press release

Euro-shoppers prefer paper

Paper based containers are the preferred choice of packaging for shoppers for groceries and fresh produce, according to an international survey.

Out of the 7,086 consumers surveyed by YouGov in Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Poland and Spain, 4,857 indicated a preference for the type of container in which groceries and fresh produce are stored and displayed on-shelf. The survey gave the choices for container type as paper-based or plastic: of the 4,857 consumers who gave a preference, 68% preferred paper-based containers compared with 32% preferring plastic.

Out of all the consumers asked, 41% stated either that the type of container made no difference to their likelihood to buy a product, or that they did not know. But of the remaining majority of consumers, 85% stated that they would be more likely to buy a product in paper-based containers compared to plastic containers.

The results are said to mirror a similar study conducted last year in the UK where, amongst the 1,114 consumers who stated a preference, 93% said they would be more likely to buy products in paper-based containers than in plastic containers.

Press release

Backing for sustainable designers

Five Scottish designers with ideas to create more sustainable clothing and accessories have been announced as the successful applicants for funding from Zero Waste Scotland at the Scottish Textile and Leather Association’s annual conference.

Zero Waste Scotland’s circular economy fund for textile and apparel designers is the first of its kind in Scotland, and will help the designers adopt new innovative methods for a more circular economy, where materials are kept in high -value use for as long as possible, rather than being used once and discarded.

Ideas from the successful designers include plans for a transformable accessory which can be used as a scarf, hood or bag; shoes made from wild Scottish deer skin (which would otherwise go to waste); and a new repair and recycle service for cycling clothing.

Press release

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