So the latest series of my favourite show, Earthrise, is on, and I have been neglecting to watch and comment on it. Here is the second episode, which features Entrepreneurs in the US who are turning used cooking oil into bio fuel, some Italians making biodegradable plastics at an industrial scale, and a company in England trying to store renewable energy with air. Here it is:
The fact that companies like Grease lightning have taken an industry (the disposal of waste cooking oil) from the point that they were being paid to take grease away, to a stage where they now pay restaurants for their grease, shows the innovation and economic output that green thinking can produce. The term “green economy” is no longer a barb to be hurled at unwashed tree hungers. It's a real thing now.
I am not so sure about making plastics out of sugar. Yes it's great that there is one less reason to drill for oil, and of course biodegradable bottles would be great. But we have already damaged so much of our environment clearing land for sugar plantations, and poisoning rivers and seas (etc.) ensuring the land is fertilised. Doesn't this just create more incentive for more of the same? After all, even if we recycle bio plastic, most of those coke bottles will still have to be grown anew every year.