Out and about with Julie and Stella

Out and about with Julie and Stella

Some very hot summer weather embraced the Royal Highland Show this year.

mini cows.jpgThere were over 178,000 visitors to the weekend’s event.  The show which ran from Thursday to Sunday was set out in themed areas boasting a lifestyle village; equestrian village; cattle judging; forestry and countryside areas; craft zones; shopping arcades; livestock lines; machinery and motor zones; and a food and drink hall.  Stella (our marketing and information officer) and I saw prize winning blocks of cheese; ice-cream and butter; unusual-looking sheep, cute piglets, goats, poultry and cows being judged in the ring.  But top of the agenda for us was a visit to the renewable energy area.  friendly sheep.jpg

After walking through a sea of tractors and other agricultural machinery we found the renewables section.  Such an area is welcome as it has value for businesses and the general public alike given the ambitious targets that Scotland has set to reduce carbon emissions by 42% (of levels in 1990), have 100% electricity from renewable sources, 10% biofuels for road transport by 2020 and the zero waste policy (with targets between 2014-2021).  There was a predominant presence of biomass (wood chip) burner, anaerobic digestion and wind power stands at the show but there was definitely room for expansion, perhaps with promotion of alternative transport fuels, awareness of why we must look into renewable fuels and reduce, reuse and recycle waste.  lunch whitmuir organics.jpg

Coca-Cola was promoting ‘happiness recycled’ (elsewhere in the show grounds), a programme which they executed through a number of activities with the aim of getting people more involved and inspired to recycle plastic bottles.  A number of companies present at the show were promoting themselves as green, which is great to see.  However, after eating lunch we found that there were no recycling facilities only skips to collect all waste, which ranged from food, to paper, card and empty drinks vessels.  This was quite sad to see. Ironically when the show was running it was ‘recycle week’, as promoted by recyclenow.com. Recyclenow.com is a new website for people to see what and where they can recycle depending on their region. The RHS was great but hopefully next year recycling facilities will be available.
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Chief Science Officer

Julie is the Chief Science Officer for the Scottish Biofuel Programme. Julie holds a PhD in Microbiology and her research expertise is in ABE Fermentation. She is also interested in sustainable biofuels and energy production.

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