Colonialism caused Climate Change
It caused extinction, deforestation, pollution
IPCC, The International Panel on Climate Change mentioned this in their last report.
It has included the term colonialism in its last report’s summary for the first time.
Colonialism refers to the practice of acquiring full or partial control over another group’s territory.
Many communities on the ground are still living through the remnants of colonialism—and fighting the forms into which it has evolved. We only have to look at the Russian occupation of Ukraine to remember that colonialism is still alive and well. Or to fossil fuel tycoons who desecrate Indigenous lands in chase of profit. Or the U.S. military-industrial complex whose tanks and fighter jets make it among the world’s top carbon polluters.
European colonialism exploited land and resources.
They not only devastated the local communities living on the lands. They also devastated ecosystems.
Communities from Africa to North America were impacted and are still grappling with the issues.
Undoing the damage of colonialism will be an uphill struggle, but the IPCC has made the work just a wee bit easier.
What do you think?
For this week, I’ve 3 startups that are making sure that what we say is recyclable is actually recycled.
Pretty obvious…To cut our emissions and avoid catastrophic climate change, we need to reduce our consumption. We need to stop using virgin materials and instead upcycle and reuse what we have. Recycling plays an integral part in this but 90% of the plastic never gets recycled- primarily because recycling is complex and producing virgin plastic is easier and more profitable. And so…
Bringing AI to recycling…Material recovery facilities or MRFs are the places where useful material is separated from trash, recycled and sold again in the market. The process of sorting this trash is manual and capital intensive. The UK-based True Circle is changing that by bringing data-driven AI to the recycling industry. They apply computer vision technology to waste streams flowing in MRFs, which makes the sorting task easier.
It installs cameras and lighting kits in its customers’ waste processing plants.
The data is put in the cloud and the computer vision machine learning model tags every single item.
Real-time data on what’s passing through their plants allows MRFs to do waste analytics and get timely alerts.
More credibility…Effective sorting of the trash means that MRFs can effectively extract more high-value material from the trash, recycle it and sell it in the market with confidence. True Circle is also planning to certify the material that is processed using their technology- making it easier for sellers and buyers of recycled material.
Facts…90% of the raw material used by the plastic industry is coming from the fossil fuel industry. So one harmful industry is causing more harm by fueling another one. And of all the plastic that is produced, less than 5% of it is used more than once. The remaining just sit in our landfills or oceans- choking the planet.
A carbon-free economy…That’s what Canada-based Loop Industries is striving for. Its mission is to accelerate a circular plastics economy by manufacturing 100% recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET) plastic and polyester fibre. PET and polyester fibre are usually found in plastic bottles, packaging, carpets and textiles. Loop has a patented and proprietary technology that breaks no and low-value waste PET plastic and polyester fibre into their base building blocks- dimethyl terephthalate (DMT) and monoethylene glycol (MEG)
DMT and MEG are then purified and re-combined into Loop™ branded PET plastic and polyester fibre.
Loop™ branded PET is a high purity, virgin-quality plastic suitable for use in food-grade packaging.
This prevents plastic from harming the environment and effectively reuses the plastic already in the ecosystem.
That’s big…Loop recently signed a multi-year supply agreement with French food group Danone and will supply them with Loop™ branded PET resin made from 100% recycled content. This would also be used by Evian, Danone’s bottled water brand.
Everyone is clueless…It’s hard to find a packaging these days that doesn’t have a recycling symbol. The recycling symbol has been badly abused. Brands are putting the symbol on every product and consumers think that every packaging is recyclable. No one has time to read the fine print and the packaging eventually ends up in the environment- sitting there for decades, if not centuries.
It’s not just material properties…When it comes to recycling infrastructure and regulation, every country has different rules. Brands don’t build the packaging according to those rules. And that’s the problem that Recycda is solving. Their software tool helps companies design for country-specific recycling infrastructure and regulations.
The tool can be used by brand owners, retailers, and packaging producers to align with country-specific requirements.
It shows how changes in specification affect recyclability.
It makes it easier for brands to decide on the packaging if they are selling internationally.
They took it seriously…The three minds behind Recyda Christian Knobloch, Anna Zießow and Vivian Loftin came together in September 2019 at ‘The Mission’. It was an initiative that brought together 11 leading companies from the food industry and 20 young talents from around the globe to jointly fight plastic waste. And this team was tasked with developing a world map for recycling.
🙋Trivia of the week
Tropical rainforests are often called the “lungs of the planet” because they generally draw in carbon dioxide and breathe out oxygen.
They cover less than 2 percent of Earth's total surface area but are home to 50 percent of Earth's plants and animals.
The biggest one is the Amazon Rainforest.
On a country basis, _______ ranks number one in terms of rainforest cover, followed by the Democratic Republic of Congo, Indonesia, Peru, and Colombia.
Which country are we talking about?
Thanks for reading today’s edition. If you liked it, please share it with your network.
Have a good weekend and see you next week👋