Snippets for 9 September 2021


Welcome to our latest Snippets newsletter.


In this edition of SnippETS we start off with a great tongue in cheek article about EVs that will make you think and laugh, followed with an article that discusses reducing embodied emissions in the EV itself. Next, we discuss the trials and tribulations of the UK’s Committee on Climate Change and we learn why climate activists are targeting the insurance companies to act on climate change. With insurance being all about risk, it certainly makes sense!


We then turn our lens to biodiversity and ecosystems with a look at the coming COP15 summit and discussions around mangrove restoration and the benefits of allowing trees to plant themselves. If there are to be changes in land cover, they must be tracked by remote sensing and mapping, so we got you covered there. No discussion around biodiversity and GHGs is complete without an article about deep sea microbes that do some very important work when it comes to helping reduce methane emissions!


Speaking of work, we wind it all up with an article that ponders what the future of work will be like in the wake of what we have learned from COVID-19.



Our first article this week may make you want to sell your EV and buy a Ute… or not! With utes being such a huge seller in NZ, maybe they are the best vehicle around to own? This article may make you think, or just smile. Read more...






On a more serious note, with EVs and their minimal exhaust emissions hopefully being the future, there needs to be consideration, and minimisation, of the manufacturing emissions in creating the EVs themselves. These manufacturing, and upstream supply, emissions will likely be the majority of emissions from the auto industry in the future, and ways to minimise or eliminate these need to be implemented. Read more...


How optimistic should we be about things such as a zero-carbon car? According to the UK’s top climate adviser, now is the time to strive for our carbon goals – not to be “defeatist” about them. Chris Stark, the CE of the Committee on Climate Change argues we need to frame the conversation on carbon reduction in a more positive light, pushing back on a wave of criticisms that argue the costs are too high. Furthermore, it is a good opportunity to modernise the economy. Read more...


It may be that the costs of adapting to new carbon targets is hefty, but not adapting brings high financial risks. A coalition of insurers, the Net Zero Insurance Alliance (NZIA), aims to transition their underwriting portfolios to net-zero by 2050. This will be costly for businesses resisting the carbon neutral push, and it’s coming from the people whose job it is to think about risk. Read more...





Efforts to protect the natural world have yet to achieve the same high profile as those to limit climate change, but are just as important. The COP15 summit aims to shine a light on biodiversity issues. Originally signed in 1992 and ratified by 195 countries, it is designed to protect diversity of plant and animal species and ensure natural resources are used sustainably. Something we have had a lot of trouble doing! Final goals are to be set early in 2022. Read more...


Mangroves can play a big part in carbon capture but also prevent coastal erosion and act as a nursery for young fish and act as a natural water filter. Indonesia is scaling up restoration projects to try to recover part of the one million hectares it has lost. It’s a delicate balancing act to ensure that no one loses an income source through these projects, but containing about 23% of the world’s mangroves, it is of great importance. The project is looking to rehabilitate 600,000 hectares by 2023. Read more...



Trees play a big part in biodiversity and carbon capture and we certainly need more of them; but what is the best way to reforest an area? Might letting nature do what it does best be the way to go? Trees naturally grow from seeds blown by the wind, carried by animals or birds, or from plant parts such as stems or roots. Furthermore, allowing natural re-growth means the right tree grows in the right place. Read more...



It is one thing to makes claims about afforestation or deforestation, but with millions of dollars of carbon credits relying on these claims, surely we need to be monitoring and verifying their credibility. As this article discusses, experts drawn from academia, the private sector and environmental NGOs have identified 12 attributes of zero deforestation commitment (ZDC) mapping and monitoring systems, that contribute to their credibility, salience, legitimacy and scalability – the four criteria that enable stakeholders to make better-informed decisions and their commitments to protect forests. Read more...



A new study has examined microbes that live in undersea carbonate rock mounds and their interactions with methane. By collecting samples at seven different seafloor seeps around North America it has been found that rock-inhabiting microbes were actually consuming methane inside the rocks. Furthermore, these microbes appeared to consume methane 50 times faster than microbes in sediment. Microbial communities, including those inside carbonate rock mounds, prevent methane from moving up into the water column and into the atmosphere. Read more...




As we slowly emerge from another Covid lockdown, it is time perhaps to consider what the future of work may look like. Participants at Ricoh Eco Action Day 2021 noted that companies need to find a balance between connecting physically distributed work teams, employee’s mental wellbeing and the ability to cope with a rupture to office work. Research by the DBS bank Singapore found that a 60-40 configuration works best for its employees, where employees are in the office 60 per cent of the time. Read more...





We bring you a couple of interesting innovation articles this week:

















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