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Greta Thunberg named the youngest ‘Person of the Year’ by Time magazine

Greta Thunberg, the Swedish schoolgirl who inspired a global movement to fight climate change, has been named Time magazine’s Person of the Year for 2019.

The 16-year-old is the youngest person to be chosen by the magazine in a tradition that started in 1927.

Time magazine cover with Greta Thunberg

Speaking at a UN climate change summit in Madrid before the announcement, she urged world leaders to stop using “creative PR” to avoid real action.

The next decade would define the planet’s future, she said.

Last year, the teenager started an environmental strike by missing lessons most Fridays to protest outside the Swedish parliament building. It sparked a worldwide movement that became popular with the hashtag #FridaysForFuture.

Since then, she has become a strong voice for action on climate change, inspiring millions of students to join protests around the world. Earlier this year, she was nominated as a candidate for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Source: BBC News

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Super-insulated home: Heating by cat power?

Not a lot of people know this, but the average domestic cat gives off nearly 20W of heat. Why is this relevant? Because if your home was super-insulated so that it only lost 1kwh of heat a day, then the body heat of a couple of domestic cats could be sufficient to keep the living space warm – at least until the temperature outside was 16° colder than inside.

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The total heat lost of a building depends on two main factors – its average heat lost (ie how insulated it is) and the temperature difference between inside and outside. Together these two factors tell you how much heat you need to generate to keep the interior cosy. So in this example your living space set to be a comfortable 20°C, only once the outdoor temperatures fell below 4° would you need to invite additional household pets into the home to boost the heating.

If the building is well insulated enough, the internal gains will be more than the total losses through the building. In other words the number of watts of heat required would be less than the heat given off by occupants and from everyday activities, such as waste heat from appliances, cooking, hot water use, plus any solar gains received through windows.

 

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Dennis Bebo – MSC, BSC, DEA, CeMAP

TA DenEco Consultancy – www.deneco.co.uk

UK Election: Lim Dems pledge £100bn climate fund

A Liberal Democrat government would spend £100bn tackling the effects of climate change and protecting the environment, the party’s deputy leader has announced.

Sir Ed Davey said the five-year investment would “jump-start” efforts to combat the “climate emergency”.

The pledge would be funded through borrowing and tax changes, to be set out in detail in the party’s manifesto.

The Conservatives and Labour both have targets to reduce carbon emissions.

Sir Ed, who served as secretary of state for energy and climate change in the coalition government, said his party would “decarbonise capitalism” if elected.

He said a Lib Dem administration would be a “government of business” by stopping Brexit, increasing investment in infrastructure, and promoting new green jobs.

Speaking in Leeds, he also pledged his party would build a new tram or metro system in the West Yorkshire city.

Sir Ed, who is also the party’s finance spokesman, said the climate investment would include a new £10bn “renewable power fund” to leverage more than £100bn of extra private climate investment.

“This will fast track deployment of clean energy, to make Britain not just the world leader in offshore wind, but also the global number one in tidal power too.

“And we will invest £15bn more to make every building in the country greener, with an emergency ten-year programme to save energy, end fuel poverty and cut heating bills.”

The party said the policy would be funded through £85bn of borrowing and £15bn raised through tax changes, which will be detailed in its manifesto.

Sir Ed also attacked the “fantasy economics” of Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, claiming that the spending plans unveiled by the two parties represent a “debate between fantasies”.

“Fantasies born of nostalgia for a British Imperial past. Competing with fantasies from a failed 1970s ideology.”

Source: BBC News