Sustainability Momentum Sdn Bhd

British Airways to Use Landfill Waste as Jet Fuel

Photo Credit: British Airways

The British Airways (BA) has recently moved a step closer on its delayed GreenSky project by announcing a new fuel plant which will be located in Thurrock, Essex. The GreenSky project is a joint venture between BA and Solena Fules which plans to build the world’s first facility to convert landfill waste into jet fuel. The facility is expected to be completed in 2017 and BA has committed to purchasing 50,000 tonnes of fuel produced from its partner for at least 11 years. BA claims that the carbon offset from this initiative is the same as taking 150,000 cars off the road.


Date & Source: April 16, 2014; The Guardian

Perak’s Last Marine Turtle Beach and Forest Reserve at Risk!

Photo Credit: Nadine Ruppert

The state government of Perak has degazetted 60 hectares of Tanjung Hantu Permanent Forest Reserve in order to build a liquefied natural gas plant and a steel coil mill. The reserve is known for the habitats of two endangered dipterocarp tree species, Shorea glauca and Shorea lumutensis, while the adjacent Pasir Panjang beach is the only remaining nesting site for green sea turtles, Chelonia mydas in the state. The industrial projects will not only cut through the reserve but also severely affect the survival of endangered species. Currently, local activists are trying to persuade the state government by collecting signatures from the public through an online petition. 


Date & Source: April 15, 2014,

High Carbon Dioxide Levels Cause Fish to be attracted to Predators

Photo Credit: Bates Littlehales/Corbis

A collaborative study conducted by Australian and US researchers has recently revealed that the CO2 content in water alters nerve stimulation mechanisms and behaviour of coral reef fish which might increase its vulnerability to predator. This study concluded that fish exposed to environment with high CO2 will become bolder and travel further away from its shelter as it is not able to distinguish between odours of different habitats and is also attracted to its predator’s odour. One of the scientists involved in the research, Hugh Sweatman, states that ocean acidification (due to dissolved CO2 in water) seems to reverse sensations in fish such that the repulsive smells of a predator become attractive.


Date & Source: April 13, 2014; The Guardian

Diapers Made From Jellyfish? A Cleaner Option for Your Baby

Photo Credit: Wiki Commons

Cine’al Ltd, an Israeli nanotechnology start-up has developed eco-friendly diapers that are made from jellyfish. Researchers have found that the super-absorbent quality of jellyfish flesh can increase the absorption of diapers twice as much as most diapers on the market. In addition, the product also biodegrades in less than 30 days, which makes it more eco-friendly than most diapers that require hundreds of years to break down. These jellyfish diapers may help reduce the amounts of nappies sent to landfill and also control the increasing jellyfish population in the oceans.


Date & Source: April 11, 2014, Mother Nature Network

Food Waste Powers Vertical Farming Facility

Photo Credit: Plant Chicago

In Chicago, an old meatpacking facility is in its transformation process into a net zero vertical farming operation powered by food waste. A giant anaerobic digester, that is able to capture methane from food wastes to produce electricity and heat, is currently being constructed. The digester is designed with a combined heat and power system to produce electricity and heat for food producers, as well as to control the temperature of the building. John Edel, the entrepreneur behind this sustainable urban agriculture effort, expects the facility to be operating by the end of this year.


Date & Source: April 10, 2014,

Breakthrough: US Navy Successfully Converts Seawater into Jet Fuel

Photo Credit: Smart Planet
U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) has discovered a way to convert seawater into fuel that can be used to power its modern naval vessels. They have recently successfully flown a radio-controlled model plane fuelled with liquid hydrocarbon extracted from seawater. In order to produce sea-based fuels, researchers employed a catalytic converter to extract hydrogen and carbon dioxide from seawater with 92% efficiency and then transformed these gases into liquid hydrocarbon using a metal catalyst. The NRL aims to produce this sea-based fuel at a cost of 3 to 6 dollars per gallon within a decade in order to make it cost competitive with its current fuel. 


Date & Source: April 10, 2014, Smart Planet

Carbon Dioxide Levels Hit Alarming Stage!

Photo Credit: Flickr

On Monday, 7th April 2014, CO2 monitoring conducted at Mauna Loa volcano recorded a reading of 402.2 ppm, the highest CO2 level in human history. The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA’s) reading of 402.11 ppm on the same date supports this result. Based on ice and glacier analysis conducted in Greenland, the only other time that CO2 levels have reached this high was approximately between 800,000 and 15 million years ago, most likely a time before human civilization. However, unlike this past record which was due to natural atmospheric CO2 fluctuations, current records are the result of excessive CO2 emissions caused by anthropogenic activities. Scientists continue to urge for immediate action to mitigate the effects of atmospheric CO2.


Date & Source: April 9, 2014; Inhabitat

Toyota’s World-First Unique Copper Recycling Scheme

Photo Credit: Click Green

Carmaker Toyota and its partners have recently created a world-first copper-recycling technology that will help retrieve and reuse copper metal in its manufacturing process. The new sorting method enables the copper to be recycled by preventing contamination during the dismantling process. The technology can produce copper with 99.96% purity and it is estimated that as much as 1,000 tonnes of copper can be produced annually using this method. Toyota’s innovation will not only put them in the forefront of sustainability, but will help combat the depletion of global copper supply. 


Date & Sources: April 7, 2014, Click Green

Harmful Algal Blooms: Threatening Malaysian Coastal Waters

Photo Credit: The Green Reporter 

In February this year, the harmful algal bloom that happened in Tanjung Kupang, Johor led to mass mortality of commercial fishes in 9 fish farms. In fact, this incident is only one of many, threatening the coastal waters of other states in Malaysia, including Sabah, Kelantan and Penang. Sabah is reported to have the highest incidence of algal bloom in the past few years. Harmful algal blooms (HABs), aka Red Tides, occur when nutrient-rich runoff enters a waterway, triggering a sudden increase in the population of harmful microalgae. Land-based discharges, natural upwelling and seabed dredging are common nutrient sources for microalgae. The frequent occurrence of HABs is expected to push local authorities to step up monitoring of coastal waters.


Date & Source: April 7, 2014, The Star Online

Electricity from Ocean Currents - Ocean Energy Turbine

Photo Credit: Crowd Energy

Crowd Energy, a company from Florida has introduced a new Ocean Energy Turbine that works on the sea floor to generate electricity from ocean currents. This Turbine employs three large paddles, each integrated with movable blades that flip open and shut as the paddles are pushed by the current and is spun around. This Turbine is designed to cope with the harsh conditions of marine environment, creates minimal noise and operates at speeds similar to swimming fish so that it does not impact marine life. Crowd Energy is currently organising a Kickstarter Campaign to collect funds to progress their first prototype into a second prototype for laminar flow tank tests.


Date & Source: April 7th, 2014; Inhabitat