Monday, 12 January 2015

2014 QUIZ

Pit your wits against colleagues on important environmental developments in 2014.

1. What will the European commission withhold to drive up their price?

EU emissions trading system allowances. The European commission plans to withhold 900,000 allowances.

2. Which country, along with Luxembourg, tops the league for being the most resource productive in the EU?

The UK.

3. Which UK power station is set to become the country’s largest single renewable electricity generator in 2016 and why?

Drax power station, Yorkshire. It is converting to biomass feedstock.

4. According to a survey, 81% of the world’s largest 250 companies now report the environment and social risks facing their operations, but what vital piece of accompanying information do they usually omit?

Most fail to disclose the value of those risks.

5. What was introduced in 2014 that will significantly increase the cost of breaching environmental laws?

Sentencing guidelines, which came into force in July for England and Wales.

6. Which disappearing online information source has created a storm among environment practitioners and many businesses?

Moving the Environment Agency’s website to has been heavily criticised by practitioners, who have found it hard to find information that was previously available.

7. Air quality experts identified a street in the UK in the summer as the most polluted in the world. Which street achieved that unwanted accolade?

Oxford Street in London.

8. What was adopted by EU leaders in 2014 but will not come into force at national level until spring 2017?

The revised EIA Directive. Member states have been given three years to transpose it into domestic legislation.

9. A UK company sought the first substance authorisation under the EU REACH Regulation in 2014. Which company and what was the substance?

Rolls-Royce, the aero engine company, for the continued use of bis(2-ethlyhexyl) phthalate.

10. What information went electronic from January 2014?

Waste transfer notes, with the introduction by the edoc scheme.

11. Which country became the latest to introduce a charge for single-use carrier bags?

Scotland, from 1 October 2014.

12. What is being reduced by more than 80% to help businesses?

100,000 pages of environmental guidance by Defra.

13. Which countries top the global league tables for ISO 14001 and ISO 50001 certifications?

China for 14001 (91,590 in 2012); Germany for 50001 (1,115 in 2012) – according to the latest figures from ISO.

14. What should have cost £30 by 2020 but will now cost just £18 after the chancellor changed his plans?

A tonne of carbon under the carbon price floor.

15. Which European city restricted cars entering its boundaries in March to tackle high levels of air pollution?

Paris, after levels of PM10 reached double the safe limit.

16. Which 10 football teams participating in the 2014 World Cup finals played in kits made from recycled plastic bottles?

Brazil, France, Greece, Portugal, the USA, Australia, South Korea, Croatia, England and Holland. Each Nike kit contains 13 recycled bottles.

17. Which three cities were ranked as the world’s smartest in 2014 for their long-term sustainability by academics at the IESE Business School in Spain?

Tokyo, London and New York.

18. A UK company reported this year that it had saved £25 million in 2013/14 by reducing its operational carbon emissions. Can you name the firm?

Telecoms giant BT.

19. Which football stadium is installing 380,000 LEDs to to provide coloured lighting patterns and animations?

The Allianz Arena, home of German football champions Bayern Munich.

20. Which UK food retailer reported in 2014 that 95% of its fresh produce was at risk from climate change?

Asda, owned by US retailer Walmart.

21. Eight of these have been used to cross the capital. What are they?

The tunnel boring machines used on the Crossrail project, linking Heathrow and Reading in the west with Abbey Wood and Shenfield in the east.

22. How many of the 43 air quality zones in the UK are on course to meet the 2015 deadline for EU limits on nitrogen dioxide?

Just five, with three – London, Leeds and parts of the west Midlands – not expected to be comply until 2030.

23. Better use of what could save European businesses a cumulative €630 billion a year and reduce annual greenhouse-gas emissions across the EU by up to 4%?

More efficient use of resources, according to the European commission.

24. What are expected to contribute 0.6% of global warming by 2050?

Small particle climate pollutants, such as methane, hydrocarbons, chlorofluorocarbons, tropospheric ozone and dirty particulates.

25. What is the department of communities and local government proposing to raise from 0.5 hectares to 5 hectares?

The EIA screening thresholds in England for industrial estate schemes and urban projects.

26. Which investment fund, built on oil money, has taken the decision to divest from fossil fuels?

The Rockefeller Brothers Fund, which was set up by Standard Oil tycoon John D Rockefeller. It is shifting $50 billion from fossil fuels to clean energy technologies.

27. Which UK company has placed a $40 price tag on 1 tonne of carbon?

Oil company BP.

28. What can deliver economic, social and environmental benefits worth, on average, $664?

One tonne of carbon offset, according to research by the International Carbon Reduction and Offset Alliance.

29. What could trigger £33 billion worth of investment and create 64,500 skilled and semi-skilled jobs in the UK?

Successful exploitation of the country’s estimated shale gas reserves, according to the trade body, UK Onshore Oil and Gas.

30. Name the new EU commissioners for energy and climate, and environment, maritime affairs and fisheries?

Miguel Arias CaƱete and Karmenu Vella.

31. The onshore wind industry received €10.1 billion in subsidies across the EU in 2012, according to the European commission. What other energy source received the same amount?


32. What percentage of respondents to a survey by EEF reported that their senior management had little or no involvement in their environment management system (EMS)?


33. Which three environmental issues in particular did the Environmental Audit Committee find that the government was failing on?

Flooding, biodiversity and air quality.

34. 500 million hectares of which type of land use need to be restored by 2030, according to the Global Commission on Economy and Climate?

Lost or degraded forests and agricultural land.

35. Which UK politician said this, and to whom was he speaking? “I remain open-minded to the possibility that climate change may one day turn dangerous.”

Former environment secretary Owen Paterson; speaking at the Global Warming Policy Foundation.

Source: The Environmentalist

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