Sustainable Actions: Positive News 8th Jan 2024

Sustainable Actions: Introduction

Welcome to Play It Green’s Weekly Sustainability News, where every Monday, we bring you inspiring updates on Sustainable Actions from across the globe.

We’re all about celebrating achievements in sustainability and encouraging positive change across the globe.

Today, let’s explore some fantastic developments that are shaping a greener tomorrow that can inspire others to make positive change!

Sustainable Actions: Renewable Energy Could Power the Whole UK

2023 marked a pivotal year in the UK’s renewable energy journey, achieving a landmark feat. The nation’s renewable electricity production soared, generating an astonishing 90 terawatt hours (TWh) from wind, hydro, and solar sources. This triumph is incredible and has great significance; it was enough to power all 28 million homes across the UK.

Reflecting on this, the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit’s (ECIU) Power Tracker highlighted a significant over 10% increase in renewable generation compared to 2019. Meanwhile, gas generation saw a noteworthy decline of approximately 25%. This shift is not just about cleaner energy; it represents a fundamental change in how we power our lives, moving away from fossil fuels towards a sustainable future.

Jess Ralston, the ECIU’s head of energy, said: “Every turn of an offshore wind turbine’s blades reduces our dependence on gas.”.

Each quarter of 2023 witnessed consistent growth in renewable energy, with the first and fourth quarters experiencing substantial increases. 

Sustainable Actions - 2023 saw enough sustainable energy generated to power all the UK
2023 saw enough sustainable energy generated to power all the UK

This steady rise emphasizes the UK’s commitment to sustainable energy sources, showcasing a path that other nations can follow. It’s a beacon of hope and a testament to what can be achieved with collective will and innovation in the realm of sustainable actions.

Sustainable Actions: Aldi Smashes Sustainability Targets and Sets New Ones

Aldi has taken an impressive leap forward in sustainability, setting a new food waste reduction goal after surpassing its 2030 target a remarkable eight years early. The supermarket chain initially aimed to reduce food waste by 20% by 2025 and by 50% by 2030. 

However, having already achieved a 50.7% reduction, Aldi is now boldly aiming for a 90% reduction by 2030.

This milestone, announced in Aldi’s first sustainability report, is a testament to the chain’s commitment to environmental stewardship. Liz Fox, Aldi UK’s national sustainability director, emphasised their dedication to impacting the environment positively.

She said: “We’re proud of the progress we’re making, which we’re pleased to share in our first sustainability report, and that’s why we’re looking to push ourselves even further. “.

Aldi’s approach includes trialling refill fixtures and employing energy-saving initiatives like solar panels and chiller doors.

Sustainable Actions - Aldi has smashed its food waste reduction targets 8 years early (image courtesy of Aldi)
Aldi has smashed its food waste reduction targets 8 years early (image courtesy of Aldi)

Giles Hurley, Aldi UK’s chief executive, highlighted the intersection of sustainability and affordability, noting the importance of acting responsibly in times of economic strain. Aldi’s new target demonstrates that environmental considerations can go hand-in-hand with offering unbeatable prices. This balance of sustainability and affordability is pivotal for the mainstream adoption of eco-friendly practices.

Sustainable Actions: The King Honours Sustainability Leaders

The 2024 New Year’s Honours List has brought forth a constellation of environmental champions, recognising their pivotal roles in shaping a sustainable future. This year’s list includes a diverse array of individuals from various sectors, all united by their commitment to environmental sustainability and the fight against climate change.

Amanda Blanc, CEO of Aviva, was awarded a Damehood for her services to Business, Gender Equality, and net zero, symbolising the crucial link between corporate leadership and environmental responsibility. Aviva’s pledge to achieve net zero across its operations by 2040 reflects this commitment. Another notable figure is Rachel Watkyn, head of the Tiny Box Company, honoured for her work in Sustainability, Ethical Business Growth, and Exports, demonstrating the power of innovative and eco-conscious entrepreneurship.

The list also features prominent figures like James McDonald, President of the Royal Academy of Engineering, and Lee McDonough, Director General at the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero, recognised for their contributions to energy and climate. 

Sustainable Actions - King Charles has honoured a number of sustainability leaders in the New Year's Honours
King Charles has honoured a number of sustainability leaders in the New Year's Honours

These honourees embody the spirit of progress, showcasing how expertise in various fields, from science to business, plays a critical role in advancing environmental goals.

The recognition of these leaders and activists in the King’s 2024 Honours List not only celebrates their individual achievements but also underscores the importance of collaborative effort in tackling global environmental challenges. Their work inspires us all to contribute to sustainable actions in our own capacities.

Sustainable Actions: Wrap Up

This week’s news on renewable energy, Aldi’s sustainability milestones and the King’s Honours exemplifies the power of Sustainable Actions. These stories are not just about technological advancements or corporate initiatives; they are about the collective will to make a difference. They remind us that every step towards sustainability, no matter how small, contributes to a larger, global movement towards a greener future.

Join us next Monday for more inspiring stories and remember, every action you take makes a difference. Together, let’s continue this journey towards a more sustainable world.

Play It Green: Empowering Your Sustainability Journey

Ready to take your commitment to sustainability to the next level? Play It Green stands as your partner in creating positive environmental change. From educational resources on sustainable practices and signposting to sustainable services to initiatives like tree planting and social giving, Play It Green offers a holistic approach to environmental stewardship. 

Join us in the journey toward sustainability—embrace eco-conscious practices and be a force for positive change in our world. All whilst staying relevant, meeting legislation and aligning with the values of today’s consumers and employees.

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