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Waste management choices in Europe Waste management choices in Europe
Not long ago the amount and composition of waste was such that it could be simply diluted and dispersed into the environment. Most items were reused and only a few remained, that would not decompose naturally. With industrialisation and rising urban density, a new concept followed: collect and dump out of sight. The aim was to eliminate waste or at least protect the population from it. This generally involved either openly burning it (still pract...
15 Dec 2006 - by Emmanuelle Bournay
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Shipbreakers of Asia Shipbreakers of Asia
A few recent changes in national and international regulations provoked a massive drop in the tonnage of ships being broken up and major shifts in the shipbreaking market. Bangladeshi shipbreaking yards are, for example, gradually gaining ground on their Indian counterparts because Bangladesh does not enforce mandatory “gas-free for hot work” certification for oil tankers (Greenpeace).
15 Dec 2006 - by Emmanuelle Bournay
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Energy production waste in selected European countries Energy production waste in selected European countries
Waste is a major environmental concern for the energy sector. Depending on the type of energy, the production process itself will generate substantial quantities of waste. The energy sector generates specific types of waste: waste from mining and upgrading coal and lignite (tailing); waste from oil and gas refining; combustion waste from thermal power stations; waste from air-pollution abatement devices and fi nally the components of the power st...
01 Oct 2006 - by Diana Rizzolio
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Markets for Caspian oil and gas Markets for Caspian oil and gas
The prospects for rapid oil wealth contrast with fast spreading poverty following the collapse of the Soviet economy. Although massive investment has suddenly been channelled into the area, its effect is still both geographically and socially very limited, with little widespread impact on society.
29 Nov 2007 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Energy production, consumption and export - Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan Energy production, consumption and export - Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan
The land-based activities of the oil and gas industry in Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan have had a much more severe impact on the environment than marine activity. In particular the growth in hydrocarbon-related activity has destroyed the environmental balance of whole areas throughout the region.
29 Nov 2007 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Emissions and energy scenarios by source Emissions and energy scenarios by source
Despite the Kyoto protocol and increased concern over the consequences of climate change, world wide emissions of CO2 continues to grow. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA) world total CO2 emissions will increase by 62% from 2002 – 2030. More than two-thirds of the increase will come from developing countries. They will overtake the OECD as the leading contributor to global emissions early in the 2020s. Despite the strong increase ...
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Kyoto protocol, 2002 target status Kyoto protocol, 2002 target status
Target reached in 2002, but the emissions are increasing again. By the end of 2005, countries that are obliged to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions shall report on their progress towards reaching the emission targets set in the Protocol. Even if the total emissions from Annex 1 countries decreased by 6,4 % between 1990 and 2002, only a few of these countries can report on a real progress in reaching their emission targets. The decrease is mai...
17 May 2005 - by Robert Barnes, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Cooling factors Cooling factors
The amount of aerosols in the air has direct effect on the amount of solar radiation hitting the Earth's surface. Aerosols may have significant local or regional impact on temperature. Water vapour is a greenhouse gas, but at the same time the upper white surface of clouds reflects solar radiation back into space. Albedo - reflections of solar radiation from surfaces on the Earth - creates difficulties in exact calculations. If e.g. the polar ice...
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Kyoto protocol, timeline and history Kyoto protocol, timeline and history
The Kyoto Protocol In 1997 world leaders adopted the Kyoto Protocol requiring rich countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions to 5.2% below the 1990 level, calculated as an average over the period 2008-2012. Under the Kyoto Protocol the rich countries have different targets, that in sum adds up to a reduction of 5.2%. For example, the European Union aims for an 8% cut in total, Germany committed to a 21% cut and the United Kingdom to 12.5...
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Greenhouse effect Greenhouse effect
Human activities are causing greenhouse gas levels in the atmosphere to increase. This graphic explains how solar energy is absorbed by the earth's surface, causing the earth to warm and to emit infrared radiation. The greenhouse gases then trap the infrared radiation, thus warming the atmosphere.
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Temperature trends (1976 - 2000) Temperature trends (1976 - 2000)
Over the 20th century there has been a consistent, large-scale warming of both the land and ocean surface, with largest increases in temperature over the midand high latitudes of northern continents. This graphic shows the temperature changes across the planet from the years 1976 to 2000, as long-term deviations from the expected mean. The higher temperature increases over land surface - compared to ocean surface - is consistent with the observed...
17 May 2005 - by UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Main greenhouse gases Main greenhouse gases
A table of the main greenhouse gases and their attributes, sources and concentration levels from 1998. Naturally occurring greenhouse gases include water vapour, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and ozone. Greenhouse gases that are not naturally occurring include hydro-fl uorocarbons (HFCs), perfl uorocarbons (PFCs), and sulphur hexafl uoride (SF6), which are generated in a variety of industrial processes. Water vapour is the most abunda...
17 May 2005 - by UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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National carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions per capita National carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions per capita
Shows various countries and their levels of CO2 emissions per capita. Also indicates the difference from high income to low income nations on CO2 output. Central to any study of climate change is the development of an emissions inventory that identifies and quantifies a country’s primary anthropogenic sources and sinks of greenhouse gas. Emissions are not usually monitored directly, but are generally estimated using models. Some emissions can b...
17 May 2005 - by UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Kyoto protocol, 2002 target status Kyoto protocol, 2002 target status
After more than 10 years of negotiations, the Kyoto Protocol finally becomes legally binding for the countries that have ratified it. The overall goal in the Protocol is a 5,2 % reduction of greenhouse gas emissions below the 1990 level by Annex 1 countries by 2010. As of 2 February 2005, 141 states and regional economic integration organizations had ratified, acceded to, approved, or accepted the Protocol. Only USA, Australia, Monaco and Croatia...
17 May 2005 - by Robert Barnes, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Development of fossil fuel resources in the Arctic, 2005 Development of fossil fuel resources in the Arctic, 2005
Barents Sea: The 2004 lifting of an embargo on offshore hydrocarbon exploration in the Norwegian Barents has renewed activity there. Regulation of exploration is animportant political issue. Debate in 2005 focused on environmental protection and establishing areas free of oil development. In Russia five companies were selected as finalists in the joint development of the Shtokman gas field, in the Barents Sea. This field is estimated to hold twic...
07 Oct 2005 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Arctic sea routes - Northern sea route and Northwest passage Arctic sea routes - Northern sea route and Northwest passage
Sea routes along the edges of the Arctic ocean, or rather along the coasts of Northern Canada and Russia, holds potential for decreasing the number of days in shipping goods from the Pacific to Atlantic coasts in Europe and North America, and vice versa. In addition, this could provide a means to transport natural resources, such as oil and gas, extracted in the Arctic. Currently these routes have not been possible to use this, due to the ice con...
07 Oct 2005 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Arctic development hotspots Arctic development hotspots
Projects in developing extraction of fossil fuels, such as oil and natural gas are underway in several places in the Arctic - both on land and in the sea. The fuels are to be transported by both land and sea pipelines, as well as shipped on water. The development of these activities threaten natural habitats, in hotspots for conservation and wildlife. This map displays some of the latest hotspots with current or proposed development, together wit...
01 Nov 2006 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Oil and gas development in the Mackenzie valley Oil and gas development in the Mackenzie valley
The Mackenzie Valley in Arctic Canada, Northwest Territories, represents one of the main sites for development of fuels extraction in North America. Activities, including the development of pipelines, impact indigenous peoples, as well as sensity environment.
06 Dec 2006 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Barents Sea vulnerability index Barents Sea vulnerability index
Areas that are vulnerable to pollution from oil and chemical spills where identified using a multiple index in a geographical analysis. Factors, including shoreline sensitivity, corals, benthic conditions, sea birds, marine mammals, fish and fisheries and other sea resources where taken into account and weighed for their importance.
06 Dec 2006 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Barents Sea ecoregion conservation priority areas and oil and gas infrastructure Barents Sea ecoregion conservation priority areas and oil and gas infrastructure
The Barents Sea ecoregion - the part of the World Ocean north of the Nordic countries and Northwest Russia, has a unique environment with major sea bird colonies, rich benthic and plankton fauna and many major sea mammal species. To identify priority areas for conservation, thirty experts delineated sea areas based on ecological criteria in a WWF study. One of the main threats to the region is the development associated with the expansion of foss...
06 Dec 2006 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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