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Ann Danylkiw's articles

Global Drug Giant AstraZeneca Aims to Protect Biodiversity in Supply Chain

Drug maker teams up with UK researchers to pilot new biodiversity risk assessment tool

By Ann Danylkiw

May 29, 2010

One of the best-known green business mantras is "first mover advantage." In the past, corporate giants like shipping firm TNT and networking company Cisco have proved this is true with industry-first pledges to green up their operations. 

Now it appears that drug giant AstraZeneca is the latest company to follow in that tradition.

Together with the the UK's (DEFRA) and Derek Whatling, a researcher at the University of Cranfield and the consultancy , AstraZeneca is piloting a new model for biodiversity risk management in the supply chain of its pills and other products.

According to Robert Bloomfield, head of the UK's initiative (IYB-UK), current models for biodiversity appraisal are lacking in sophistication.

"The sophistication at the moment is not there frankly in terms of quality biodiversity assessment," Bloomfield said. "The fact of the matter is the measurement systems for those are still quite fragile and rudimentary."

Whatling believes his model has solved these problems. It has the flexibility to be mashed up with any product in a supply chain, and can be a stand-alone metric or used alongside ISO14001, the internationally recognized standards designed to help firms minimize how their operations harm the environment.

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Visualizing CO2: Making Emissions Tangible to Change Behavior

Carbon Budgets, Landmarks Help People Wrap Their Minds Around Emissions

By Ann Danylkiw

Apr 30, 2010

Despite increased awareness about carbon emissions and the ability to quantify it, there is still a gap between pledges of a low-carbon lifestyle and true behavioral change.

The reason, say carbon consultants, psychologists and policy analysts, is that carbon emissions aren't tangible. People can’t see the CO2 emissions from their cars and homes and airplane travel, and most can’t visualize their impact.

Companies and ecopreneurs alike are now testing strategies to change that, from introducing personal carbon budgets to making carbon into relational metrics like calorie counts and spatial objects.

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A Look at UK Energy Policy If the Tories Take Control

Prime Minister Gordon Brown Set the Election for May 6

By Ann Danylkiw

Apr 26, 2010

In less than two weeks, the British people will elect their next government. While small “c” conservative politics in the U.S. have hampered action on climate change and movement toward low-carbon energy and a renewable energy market in that country, would the same be true of a swing to conservative politics in the UK?

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Coalition of the Tired of Waiting: Fighting Climate Change at Ground Level

More Nimble Cities and Regions Eyeing First Mover Advantage

By Ann Danylkiw

Apr 16, 2010

A pattern is emerging in the geopolitics of climate change this year: Countries are banding together to begin to map out strategies to adapt to and mitigate climate change outside of the UNFCCC process and ahead of a final international climate agreement.

With the U.S. and Australia — both key players for a clear global cleantech market signal — notably lagging behind the rest of the developed world in managing national climate affairs, governments in other developed countries and emerging market countries are lining up to take first mover advantages.

Wagering on how long it’s going to take the laggards to get their affairs in order, the policy community is consolidating what bare minimum can be done at the international level and forging national, regional and local governance ties and legislative infrastructure in the meantime.

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EU Urged to Claw Back Surplus Carbon Trading Permits

Companies Stockpiling Valuable Permits Could Avoid Future Emissions Cuts

By Ann Danylkiw

Apr 2, 2010

In a few months time, the EU Emissions Trading System must the sectors that will receive exemptions meant to avoid carbon leakage for Phase III of the EU ETS.

European industry has been lobbying hard to increase the number of free, sectoral allocations. But a new by the NGO Sandbag shows that despite the political pressure to grant “sweeping exemptions” to steel, aluminum, cement, iron and energy industries, in Germany and France in particular, almost no new allowances will actually be needed.

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China's Rush Toward Green Development Suffers from Lack of Planning

Capacity, Implementation Gaps Trouble World's Biggest Investor in Clean Energy

By Ann Danylkiw

Mar 26, 2010

In China, local officials are in such a hurry to implement the central government's new renewable energy policies that some projects are going up with too little planning.

Some of the massive wind farms being built in parts of northwest China, for example, are in arid regions where they will be to quick erosion by sand and dust. Their expensive turbines will need to be replaced far earlier than the usual 20- to 30-year life spans, and the necessary transmissions lines to carry their renewable power aren't always in place. In fact, adverse conditions for turbines are found in three of the where large wind projects have been implemented: Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia and Gansu.

Ministry of Industry Information and Technology Vice Minister Miao Wei recently went so far as to call a wind farm currently under construction in Gansu province an “” and an inefficient use of government resources because of the erosion danger.

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CDM for the Everyman Ecopreneur: Reforming the Carbon Credit Process

The Bureaucracy Requires Consultants to Navigate, Pricing Out Many Entrepreneurs

By Ann Danylkiw

Mar 16, 2010

Sebastian Foot hadn’t meant to create such a frustrating job for himself.

Last year, he founded a Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) project finance structuring firm called with the “intention to take equity” in the emerging green market space. Instead, he ended up in a constant tussle with an interminably slippery bureaucracy that is the .

Foot has watched the debate surrounding its reform, and, in his mind, it doesn’t go far enough.

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Miliband Suggests UNFCCC Reforms: Smaller Groups, More Expertise

One Idea Is a UN Security Council for Climate Change

By Ann Danylkiw

Mar 15, 2010

Reporting from London

The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change would be far more effective if it relied more on smaller, representative groups of countries meeting year-round to hammer out the details of a future climate agreement, Britain’s climate change secretary, Ed Miliband, told Parliament.

He also suggested that the leadership of the UNFCCC’s annual Conference of Parties meetings needs an overhaul — instead of career politicians leading the way toward an international agreement, the COP needs diplomatic and climate change experts at the helm.

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Smart Grid Arms Race? U.S., China Face Very Different Challenges

By Ann Danylkiw

Mar 8, 2010

Talking about a green revolution as a competition between China and the U.S. is like putting two teams on the same field that play different games. Yet, this has been the popular spin on news that China’s spending on smart grid technology will exceed that of the U.S. by $200 million. It has also been the spin on and the so-called "."

But had this really ought to be understood as a competition? And is a fair comparison being made? The answer, according to some China experts, is no.

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Climate Policy Experts Not Optimistic About a Binding Agreement This Year — or Next

By Ann Danylkiw

Feb 28, 2010

Reporting from London

International policy experts discussing the future of climate change policy said they aren’t optimistic about achieving a comprehensive legally binding agreement at the COP16 meeting late this year in Mexico, and they’re not too optimistic about COP17 in South Africa in 2011 either.

The problem seems to be that trust between developed and developing countries was severed at Copenhagen in December during the last big meeting of the Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

“For Mexico to succeed, a few issues have to be addressed. The main one will be the building of trust,” Bruno Sekoli, chief negotiator for Lesotho and the COP15 chair for the least-developed countries group, said at a forum held Thursday by the Foundation for International Environmental Law and Development (FIELD) at London’s Institute for Physics.

“I do feel that Mexico may be too soon for us to reach a legally binding [agreement], we need maybe a little bit more time,” he said. “Damage from 2009 will take sometime to heal.”

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