The UN climate panel, the IPCC, has so far presented five reports summarising the scientific status of the climate. Previously a lot of the focus was on emissions from the energy used in transport, heating and industry. Research is now increasingly showing that we also must do something about how we build and produce everything from houses and cars to clothes – because that is responsible for nearly half of our emissions.
The solution is a recycling society, in which we use the materials and raw materials that we have already produced several times instead of always producing new materials in a way that impacts on the climate. A report from the UN body, the International Resources Panel, showed last year that the greatest impact on the climate is from when materials are first produced.
That’s why we at the environmental services company, Ragn-Sells, are changing our old family company, with its roots in the nineteenth century, from being the end of the road for waste that is to be disposed of, to a raw materials supplier within a recycling society.
At Ragn-Sells we have already made some progress by coming up with new solutions for turning waste into resources. Take nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium – three nutrients that are essential in agriculture. We can extract nitrogen from leachate to produce nitrogen fertiliser.
The Ragn-Sells Group is a privately held corporate group, operating companies in four countries.