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Research & Development

The latest environmental research and development news, from green packaging and low carbon technologies, to advances in biofuels and batteries.

Offshore wind: £6.5m trial to begin of ground-breaking innovation to cut costs

An enormous bucket will be sunk into the floor of the North Sea to anchor a new generation of turbines in a £6.5 million trial to begin this summer in a bid to slash the cost of offshore wind.

Cars made of tomatoes: Heinz and Ford ink bio-plastics partnership

The union between car and tomato may not be the first thing to come to mind when envisioning the avant-garde of transport, but a new partnership today announced between car conglomerate Ford and food giant Heinz suggests an imminent breakthrough for vehicle manufacturing using sustainable bio-plastics.

£800,000 grant fund for SMEs pioneering waste prevention

Grants of up to £50,000 are to be offered to local businesses, SMEs and voluntary groups through a scheme which aims to jump-start pioneering partnerships in waste prevention.

Celebrations at last for vehicle engine innovator crowned 2014 Shell Springboard winner

A Lancaster-based entrepreneur has proved that grit and determination go a long way in the search for the UK's most innovative low carbon idea, walking away with the coveted national Shell Springboard Award after being told by the judges first time round that his high-efficiency vehicle engine didn't make the grade.

RBS to provide grants and ‘road-testing’ for resource efficiency innovations

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) is on the hunt for innovative ideas and "garage-tested" green solutions that could enable the bank to become more resource efficient and, it says, help small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) get their products to market more successfully.

Share of €2.5m grant up for grabs for digital innovations tackling green challenges

A new competition is being launched at the end of the month to encourage the development of innovative digital solutions that tackle societal challenges, including those addressing sustainability and environmental issues.

Fracking: councils to get 100 per cent business rates as Total enters UK shale gas market

David Cameron is to declare that his Government is "going all out for shale" as he announces that councils will be entitled to keep 100 per cent of business rates raised from fracking sites in a deal expected to generate millions of pounds for local authorities.

Tidal energy firm Atlantis looks to raise £20m on AIM

Atlantis Resources, the Singapore marine energy company behind the giant tidal project MeyGen in Scotland’s Pentland Firth, is looking to raise £20 million on London’s AIM market.

£19m energy storage project goes on trial in Leighton Buzzard

A trial of the largest battery in Europe, which proponents hope will transform the UK electricity grid and boost renewable energy is due to start in Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire.

BRE opens sustainable building 'Centre of Excellence' in Brazil

Leading UK sustainable building innovation and certification body, BRE, is to set up its first research and showcase park in Latin America.

Google banks on airborne wind turbine device to help address future world energy needs

Google has found a new way to play a part in the future of the world’s energy production needs, this time working on a "radically cheaper" wind energy project from its 'secret' innovation facility Google X.

Phase two of £35m Energy Entrepreneurs Fund opens for bids

Small businesses and entrepreneurs with innovative low carbon energy technologies are being invited to bid for funding in the second and final tranche of the Government’s £35 million Energy Entrepreneurs Fund.

Sustainable business: how we can learn from India’s ‘frugal’ innovators

India’s culture of jugaad, or frugal innovation, has helped produce a wide range of sustainable breakthroughs. Are there lessons there for the rest of the world? Ian Thornton meets the innovators.

Naked Energy to begin UK trials of its ‘two-in-one’ solar system

Naked Energy, the UK cleantech firm that has developed a super-efficient 'two-in-one solar’ energy system, will shortly begin trialing its patented technology with two commercial partners.

Bringing closed loop into the mainstream: HP opens the doors on its pioneering plastics recycling

In an effort to reduce their environmental footprint and 'insure’ their businesses against the risks of a resource constrained world, more and more companies are introducing 'closed loop’ systems into their manufacturing businesses. But one company claims to be doing it on scale not seen before. Louise Bateman reports on Hewlett Packard’s printing cartridge recycling business that has seen it team up with a small, pioneering plastics recycling firm in Montreal, Canada.


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Offshore wind: £6.5m trial to begin of ground-breaking innovation to cut costs
The suction bucket is to be lowered at the sites of three planned offshore wind farms in the North Sea
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