Millions of tones of water and fabric is wasted every year in Bangladesh, the world’s second largest exporter of garments. But the country might also be the source of a solution, in the form of a process called upcycling.
Mounting tension in Ukraine has pushed up oil prices. The benchmark Brent crude rose over $110 per barrel at one stage, with UK light crude also up. Traders ignored the slower economic growth in China, which could reduce demand.
Saudi Arabia has replaced influential intelligence chief Prince Bandar bin Sultan “at his own request”. Replaced by his deputy Yousef Al Idrissi, Prince Bandar was the Kingdom’s pointman on the Syrian conflict, and was a former ambassador to the USA.
Engineers in Australia claim to have perfected renewable energy supply for sustained periods. The energy, developed and used on King Island, is at times completely renewable, servicing the needs of its 2,000 inhabitants. The system could provide a blueprint for other small communities.
Ireland’s most powerful agricultural lobby says fracking could be disastrous for the country’s farming and tourism. It also claims that plans for shale gas extraction would set back plans for Ireland’s economic recovery.
Millions of people in more than 150 countries have taken part in Earth Hour to raise awareness of climate change. Cities across the world turned off their lights at a specific hour to both save power, and highlight environmental issues.
Two of Saudi Arabia’s major banks have joined western financial institutions in cutting off dealings with Sudan. Al Rajhi and Ahly banks are the latest to stop doing business with the African state, following the lead of the US which imposed economic sanctions on the country in 1997 over charges of terrorism and human rights abuses.
The US government has lifted a ban on BP bidding for new federal contracts. The company reached an agreement with Washington on safety, ethical, and corporate governance requirements. The ban was imposed after the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
Utility companies E.ON is to shut down a quarter of its power plants in a cost-cutting exercise brought on by the rise of renewable energy. It has also halved the dividend paid to shareholders for 2013, and has said profits this year will decline.
The Libyan government has threatened to bomb a North Korean tanker if it does not leave an oil terminal in Sidra. Libyan rebels have bypassed the government and are allegedly trying to export oil to Pyongyan themselves.
The UAE, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain have withdrawn their ambassadors from Qatar because Doha has not implemented an agreement among Gulf Arab countries not to interfere with each others’ internal affairs. But Qatar has called the move ‘a big mistake’.
Oil has become a major issue in the upcoming referendum on Scottish independence. British prime minister David Cameron has traveled to northern Scotland to meet oil workers ahead of the vote which could see Scotland break away from the rest of Great Britain.