Thursday, 31 December 2009
Wednesday, 23 September 2009
Wednesday, 2 September 2009
Saturday, 22 August 2009
Dutch newspaper “De Telegraaf” mentions that the consumers who choose to drive an electricity driven vehicle, do not have pay (additional) taxes on their vehicles. This counts for the first two years and the years after that it will be 7 per cent. The normal percentage in The Netherlands for an environmental-friendly car is 14 per cent.
The measurement will be announced later this year, as say well-informed sources from the car sector. Purchasing an elecrical car will remain tax-free untill 2018.
The aim of the new financial plans is to encourage manufacturers to produce electricity driven vehicles, there these type of cars are cleaner, more silent and environmental-friendly.
Source: “De Telegraaf”
Wednesday, 19 August 2009
Tuesday, 18 August 2009
Next year at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol there will start a test where the plastic couvert, cups and meal rests will be transformed into electricity and warmth. With the generated electricity the suitcases will be transported into the planes. The obtained CO2 will be used as plant nutrition in the greenhouses nearby the airport.
The traditional problem for the airline companies is that the garbage rests from the flights cannot leave the airport area due to the strict security rules. With this new green test they try to find a solution to improve the environment.
Sunday, 16 August 2009
- The support of sustainable business by seeking out environmentally conscious vendors and suppliers to partner with
- Educating the general public on the importance of sustainable living through ecological community service, consumer education and environmental mentoring
- Lobbying for political action to support a more sustainable future
- The support of organic agriculture
- The continuous evaluation of the ecological impact in their processes to reduce their nvironmental footprint.
Friday, 14 August 2009
In 2008 the organization placed in Veenendaal “ the most sustainable warehouse of The Netherlands”. This distribution center measures 1.500 square meters (300 sqm offices) and is constructed resulting into an emission free building. All the aspects of the building: design, architecture, materials and the construction methods were realized with the focus on sustainability and energy savings.
The total electricity consumption of 55.000 kWh is completely covered by sustainable energy sources at this location. The builder DGBC-participant VolkersWessels (designer and constructor) had the task to reduce the energy consumption as much as possible. This means good isolation, triple glass and smart ventilation. For the lighthing the day light is used as much as possible. The cooling and refrigeration of the building with subtarrenean warmth and cooling storage. On the roof there are placed several sun panels. When there is no sun, TNT consumes green energy of the electricity network.
A surplus of energy is returned to the energy network when for example the sun panels generate more energy than needed.
Thursday, 13 August 2009
The Netherlands shows the greenest and most social side: big companies and small businesses present their green products, social organizations organize promotions and governments show their effort in promotiong electric cars, scooters and electric recharge points. There are congresses with the theme sustainability, schools participate with several activities and many more actions are done during this sustainable day.
A team of the initiator Urgenda visits, together with several Famous Dutch People, per train and with a total of 99 electrical vehicles several proyects. Urgenda is an organization which target is to promote the sustainability in The Netherlands. Dutch companies, governments, organizations or schools (and even consumers) who want to participate or want to have more information can take a look at their website. http://www.dagvandeduurzaamheid.nu/.
This can be recycling of products, the start of a green campaign, a press release or congress or discounts for green products.
Monday, 27 July 2009
Tuesday, 21 July 2009
Their newest Klimamarkt can be seen as an example of an environmental-friendly store. This green supermarket uses 50% less energy than the traditional supermarket and they also succeeded to reduce the emission of CO2 to almost the level of 0.
What did they do and how did they do it? This green supermarket of the newest generation, warmth is being used to transform it into energy, the cooling and refrigeration departments have environmental-friendly furniture with all the doors closed. Furthermore there was a lighting plan created, were LED-lighting could promote the products, make them more sustainable and reduce the level of energy.
The Belgian supermarket chain Colruyt is looking for ways to obtain a sustainable way of obtaining energy, this energy needs to support reducing the emission of CO2-gases. The price stunter will install as many sun panels as possible on the roofs of their supermarkets, where possible this will be the new way how the supermarkets obtain their energy.
Currently Colruyt already obtains 7 million kWh of electricity by wind mills, sun panels and warmth recuperation. The Belgian is with these action leading the Benelux revolution in green retailing. In neighbour country The Netherlands we do not yet see this many way to use sustainable energy in the supermarkets.
This manufactured chocolate will be used in the Mars products like Bounty, Twix and Mars. Next to the UTZ certification Mars also works with Rainforest Alliance. The method of UTZ is a structural approach to improve the productivity and reduce the level of poorness in the areas. Farmers learn how to improve their productivity, with improved methods. Furthermore they explain that farmers need to produce a wider assortment of products, to avoid depending to much on one product. Mars thinks this new production methods will increase the benefits between 30 and 50 per cent, mainly focusing on Ivory Coast (worlds biggest manufacturer of cocao for Mars).
UTZ Certified Good Inside is dedicated to creating an open and transparent marketplace for agricultural products. It offers coffee, tea and cocoa certification programs and manages traceability for RSPO certified palm oil, UTZ CERTIFIED vision is to achieve sustainable agricultural supply chains where farmers are professionals implementing good practices which lead to better businesses, where the food industry takes responsability by demanding and rewarding sustainably grown products, and where consumers buy products which meet their standard for social and environmental responsability.
Monday, 20 July 2009
American retail study shows that low Income Shoppers are More Willing to Pay a Premium for Sustainability
In the study it states that Income is not the only important factor when consumers decide to do green shopping, consumers with lower income are willing to pay a premium for green products. Women are also willing to pay more than men for green products.
The study also shows the channels that are most effective to trigger the interest of the shopper in green products as well as differences between the different generations and genders.
To download a copy of the study results, visit the Miller Zell blog, Inside the Aisle at http://insidetheaisle.com/mz-research-surveys/.
'Carbon neutral,' as applied to the banana and pineapple product supply chains, means that the carbon dioxide (CO2) emitted to produce, pack, transport and distribute the fruit will be offset by mitigation practices which increase the capture of CO2 in order to achieve a 'neutral' balance. These practices entail new, more efficient transportation methods, changes to agricultural processes to reduce CO2 emissions, and partnering with local farmers to implement preservation and reforestation programs. http://www.doleorganic.com
In the United Kingdom they expect the online Shopping to grow up to 21,3 billion pounds in 2011, a growth with almost 9 billion pounds. Some people do their shopping with the computer, because they consider it to be green, less transport and less shopping bags. There have been several studies on this topic.
One of these studies goes back to 2000 when Webvan, a big US onliner retailer, when they concluded that wider adoption of online shopping would not result into environmental profits, another study in 2002 of US book retailing did not see greater energy savings when buying online.
This effect is caused by the save of the driving to the stores and for example less receipts. But both ways to do your shopping need the transportation to get it to the distribution centers, stores or at home. We can now see more and more retailers who introduce electricity home-delivery cars like the Spanish supermarket chain Condis or the Eco-Truck of Delhaize in Belgium where the route is better planned and the load is bigger to save extra kilometers.
Online shopping may prove marginally more green in terms of energy saving but we see retailers more and more take measurements to save energy, reduce CO2 emissions and acting green.
Sunday, 19 July 2009
Some important questions retailers need to think about when they choose a supplier looping at the environmental benefits of this supplier and his products.
What kind of company is your supplier, how are their production methods, are they looping for ways to reduce pollution and garbage and are they reducing the level of energy and water?
Where is your supplier located? What does this mean for the pollution of the transport from the factory to the distribution center and finally the supermarket? This is a difficult paradox, once a company decided to quit all the African products from their assortment to reduce the level of transportation and emissions of gases, on the other hand this decision resulted into a lot of difficulties of the farmers and suppliers in Africa.
What happens with the product after use of this product? What is the level of garbage? Can this be re-used? Can it be recycled?
Communicate with your clients, make sure that your claims can be proved! If you say to reduce the level of plastic bags, reduction of CO2 make sure it happens and very important make it understandable for the consumers.
Communicate how things are measured and what the effects on the environment are. Display these environmental friendly products on an important place, support them with labels of the environmental impacts of the products and the packaging.
Opportunities in green retail
Green retailing gives you a good opportunity to win the trust and the loyalty of the consumers. Search for the measurements you can take to get a green store: Offer reusable packaging and bags, to return it to the supplier or that the consumer can re-use it. Install energy efficient lighting and water saving devices in-store (for example rainwater installation to re-use the water). Reward your customers when they do not need a bag.
Vary the size of a bag; convenience stores can work with smaller bags than traditional supermarkets, offer different sizes.
Tell your customers and employees about your efforts to save the planet!
The advantages for the retailer
- Your customers feel good about shopping in your store
- You reduce your impact on the environment
- Your employees enjoy a better working environment
- You improve your companies “green” image
- You save and earn money
Friday, 17 July 2009
In history this is the biggest impact on green retailing. The data obtained will result into a rating-system, which will be communicated on the shelves of the supermarkets.
The aim of this new environmental program is to reduce the use of energy, the reduce the level of garbage and to stimulate sustainability in retail. For the manufacturers and suppliers it has a big impact, they need to invest in obtaining the information. To better compete with their competitors and to obtain a better score on the Wal-Marts scorecard and the communication to the customers. To get the total plan operation it will take several years, the Wal-Mart concern expects everything to be ready in ten years. Experts think they can introduce it earlier, in 2011, supported by the wave of environmental measurements international retailers introduce.
An earlier measurement of Wal-Mart (the introduction of energy-efficient lamps in their assortment) had a positive effect on the environment, this green initiative already resulted into the sales of over 100 million energy-efficient lamps.
Leading supermarkets have failed to meet a target on cutting the use of carrier bags given to customers despite Government campaigns
The amount of plastic bags used by supermarkets has dropped according to research by almost a half in the last three years. This means that retailers were very close to achieving their desired aim of cutting the use by 50%.
This measurement has been taken from leading supermarkets in the United Kingdom Tesco, Waitrose, Asda, Somerfield, Marks and Spencer and the Co-op. This announcement comes as there have been calls this week for supermarkets to be more open about the amount of carriers they use.
Last year, these seven supermarket chains signed up to a voluntary agreement with the Government to achieve a 50 per cent cut in the number of bags given out compared to 2006. In May 2006, 718 million bags were being given out - by May 2009 this had almost halved to 372 million, a reduction of 48 per cent.
Wednesday, 15 July 2009
Sustainability - should it be just about "green" products or should we focus on sustaining our generations?
Together with Jos de Vries The Retail Company the formula Aquié has been developed during in 2008 which was based on a new, modern design, the use of new technologies and a well-balanced assortment of healthy groceries. Everything developed thinking of the trend on sustainable Retailing. The company only supplies bio-recycable bags and when the client brings his own bag the client gets a small reward from Aquié. The furniture and lighting was selected on the environmental advantages because of the low consumption of energy.
This fifth generation supermarket of Aquié directly was very succesfull with this new innovative concept. They are that succesfull that they opened their 2nd store already (in A Porriño, Galicia). The first supermarket could welcome over 1.250 visitors on a daily base and the turn-over is over 29% higher than the other stores of the Grupo Cuevas.
The study, from market analysts Datamonitor, said while sustainable packaging is not yet the main reason for purchasing a product, it is becoming a “consumer expectation”. It is one of a growing number of issues – including ethics, economics and environmentalism- that is driving consumer choice, said report author Matthew Adams.
Tuesday, 14 July 2009
Introducing the Green Order system they also hope to reduce the number of traffic jams and have lower costs because of a more efficient delivery system. The client will benefit by the more efficient receival of products. Clients will also get a “logistic customer scorecard”, where supplier and client can formulate their environment goals.
More than 60 per cent of the total emissions of REWE Group are caused by the factor "electricity". By increasing the energy efficiency of the stores and by the switching to green electricity important steps towards achieving the corporate climate goals have already been taken. Now, the aspects of refrigerating agents (15 per cent of the emissions), heat (12 per cent), logistics (8 per cent), paper consumption (3 per cent) and business travels (2 per cent) are on the agenda.
If we look at the typs of material we can see that paper and cartoon was the biggest product group, followed by plastics (+12%) and metal.
The results are higher than the law of packaging from 1997 states. Spain can be placed more and more by the best recycling countries of Europe, countries like France, United Kingdom, Sweden, Czech Republic or Norway.
Since the start of Ecoembes in 1998 they avoided the waste of over 10 million tons of packages, this is the same amount as the contact of 750 football stadions of FC Barcelona. Of this number they recycled over 8 millions of tons, a saving of 7,7 million of tons of CO2, 8.900 Mwh energy (yearly consumption of 900.000 housholds).
In Spain an increasing number of families and companies have the option to separate their garbage. A number of 12.376 Spanish companies work with Ecoembes (90% of the total amount of packaging). The biggest sector of recycling is the food sector, followed by the drinks sector and companies of hygienic and beauty products.
Monday, 13 July 2009
When the economical crisis began, many people were afraid of the effects on green retailing, that companies would choose for cost savings instead of social responsability. Partly this happened, retailers competing on price without thinking to much of the environment, but we also some innovative new initiatives to develop environment-friendly retail projects.
Research shows that 59% of the Dutch people is prepared to pay an extra for more sustainable products and/or services.
Below we give some examples of the Dutch retail sector of how some of the mayor players adapted to environmental-friendly and honest retailing.
Maxeda, the organization of 11 retailers launched a program called “keen on green”.
La Place for example serves only Max Havelaar coffee and biological tea
V&D increased the assortment of with a lot of new green products
DIY-markets Formado and Praxis increasingly add new construction materials which are used to make houses more environmental friendly, they even decreased the format of the leaflets which are now printed on environmental friendly paper.
The total area measures 2.500 sqm, everything built in an environmental friendly way, including a supermarket, biological restaurant, several stores and 28 appartments (selected for the image and sustainability).
While the logo may be simple, the environmental criteria behind it are tough, and only the very best products, which are kindest to the environment, are entitled to carry the EU Ecolabel. What is more, this is a label that consumers can genuinely trust. The criteria are agreed at European level, following wide consultation with experts, and the label itself is only awarded after verification that the product meets these high environmental and performance standards.
The EU Ecolabel is a rapidly growing brand. Many producers wanting to sell their products across Europe have realised the benefits that the European Ecolabel brings. Products bearing the Flower logo can be marketed throughout the European Union and the EEA countries (Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein).
There are currently twenty-three different product groups, and already more than 250 licences have been awarded for several hundred products.
The EU Eco-label is administered by the European Eco-labelling Board (EUEB) and receives the support of theEuropean Commission, all Member States of the European Union andthe European Economic Area (EEA).The Eco-labelling Board includesrepresentatives such as industry,environment protection groupsand consumer organisations.
The focus point of the agreement is to lower the quantity of energy per product, for example looking to reduce the quantity of water. The participating companies are responsable for 80% of the energy use in the soft drinks sector.
At the area of eco-retailing / green retailing the most important changes of the retail sector are seen. The consumer can rapidly change their buying behaviour but with the choice for green companies and green products they are secure of their choice; they think green. The influence of green retailing is increasing, many new companies are launched. The companies need to invest in new, fresh concepts with the real green story. It is not only telling that you are a green retail company but more important think and act as a green retailing company.
Asda hopes that the operation can benefit their stores throughout the UK and that it results into a greener and cheaper product which benefits suppliers, retailers and consumers alike. The group hopes to extend this production process into dairy products like eggs.
The new ecological delivery van reaches a maximum speed of 80 kilometer per hour and has a reach of 160 kilometer with an availability of 2 tons of weigth. The recharge point is located at the central office in Montcada I Reixach (province of Barcelona), where the chain also placed 200 sun panels and biodiesel tank for the current vans.
At this moment the Condis Group posesses 20 delivery vans in the metropolitan area of Barcelona to deliver the internet orders at home. The new delivery van, being the first food distributor in Spain, will not be added to the current number of delivery vans but will replace the traditional ones. The big advantage of this new delivery van is that there is no emission of CO2, next to the lower costs in maintenance there the motor is more easy to repair.
Condis supermarkets are located in Catalonia and in the centre of Madrid, with 193 owned supermarkets and 224 franchisers. In 2008 the Condis Group made a turn-over of 762 million euros.
Sainsbury´s opened a new flagship green store in Dartmouth, Devon (United Kingdom), in August 2008. Built with respect for the use of natural resources, including energy, water, waste, timber and land, the store was specifically designed to reduce both its operational and embodied carbon.
The pioneering store will save 40% of its overall CO2 emissions, achieved by the use of cutting edge technology. The store’s ‘biomass boiler' will heat both the building and water, using locally sourced wood that would otherwise be wasted. By using renewable energy, the amount of energy consumed from the national grid has been dramatically reduced by 50%.
Sainsbury's Dartmouth has been designed to leak fewer draughts and employs other measures, such as 'quiet revolution wind turbines' ™, to power the checkouts. This is contributing to cutting electricity usage (kWh) by a third overall.
Further carbon savings are made through the use of lower lighting levels and increased use of daylight, and cool air will be collected from chillers to keep the store cool during warmer months.
Rainwater harvesting is one of the techniques being used to reduce water consumption. Collected rainwater is used to flush customer and colleague toilets, and to irrigate plants. The store will save over one million litres of mains water every year, and uses 60% less water overall as a result.
The store's construction is also environmentally responsible, and where possible recycled or recyclable materials have been used or FSC-approved timber. As 200 trees have been used for the frame of the store, Sainsbury's will also re-plant 400 trees in the local community.
The Dartmouth store is an important stage in the plans to roll out sustainable features to the remainder for further expansion of Sainsbury´s in the United Kingdom. These plans make a significant contribution to their overall target to reduce CO2 emissions per square metre by 25% by 2012.
More information on http://www.j-sainsburys.co.uk/
The restaurant’s exterior signage is constructed around energy-efficient light-emitting diodes (LEDs), just the second time such lighting has been used on a McDonald’s. By using signage with LEDs rather than traditional sign lighting, McDonald’s will consume less energy – aprox. 25% less enegry. The LEDs will last ten to twenty times longer than the average incandescent light bulb. Along with the environmental benefits and energy efficiency they provide, LEDS also supply strong lighting In addition, TV screens in the dining area help educate customers about the restaurant’s green features.
When fast food diners have finished their burgers they don’t have to dump their waste in the trash. Collection containers around the property encourage patrons to recycle food containers, newspapers and plastic bottles, and the kitchen preparation area has its own set of receptacles for packing related recycleables.
McDonald’s new “learning lab” also features a green roof: the upper portion is more functional, planted with extensive species, while the lower portion has been made attractive to passers-by through the use of more visible plants, semi-intensive.
Inside the restaurant, the dining room is filled with materials made from recycled content, and paints and cleaning chemicals were chosen for their low environmental impact.
In 2007, hundreds of rich fashionistas queued outside Sainsbury’s to buy a bag designed by Anya Hindmarsh (a designer, see left for an example) carrying the slogan “I’m not a plastic bag”. For a while this became the latest must-have accessory.
In February 2007, the retail industry agreed to reduce the overall environmental impact of carrier bags by 25 per cent by the end of 2008. This is a comprehensive objective aimed at cutting the total amount of raw materials and energy used in bag manufacture and minimising the effect of their disposal. This will involve: reducing the environmental impact (using alternative materials and lighter weight bags); encouraging customers to take or use fewer bags; and enabling the recycling of bags, eg by offering collection facilities.
7 billion plastic bags are given away annually in the UK of which only 1 in 200 are recycled, according to The Guardian. Environmental groups complain that the bags use up natural resources, consume energy to manufacture, create litter, choke marine life and add to landfill waste. It goes without saying, of course, that all those copies of The Guardian, its supplements and blasted wallcharts never add to global warming.
London Councils are to urge the Government to allow them to set a charge of 10p per bag in London. Retailers would oppose this as being too comprehensive.
Waitrose is trialing baglessness: free carrier bags have been removed from all checkouts at the Saffron Walden store and at selected checkouts in fourteen other stores for a two-week trial in May. No results provided yet.
Meanwhile The Guardian is campaigning to encourage shoppers and retailers to support the first ever national plastic bag-free Christmas. We Are What We Do hopes to persuade retailers to tell shoppers that they will not automatically get a plastic bag, and to display a colourful logo saying "Plastic Ain't My Bag". Who thinks these things up?