Best of our wild blogs: 11 Dec 18

16 Dec (Sun): Talk on "Otters, turtles, hornbills - Hidden Treasures of East Coast Park"
Celebrating Singapore Shores

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Celebrating Singapore Shores!

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A*Star, Singapore firm develop system that turns food waste into odourless fertiliser in 24 hours

NAVENE ELANGOVAN Today Online 10 Dec 18;

SINGAPORE — Entrepreneur David Tan set up a company to reduce and recycle waste in 2016, and imported 10 machines from Japan to convert food waste into fertiliser.

But the micro-organisms from Japan could not effectively decompose curry, leftover food items from hotpot meals, and other dishes in Singapore that tended to be higher in oil and salt than Japanese food.

Mr Tan, the chief executive officer of Westcom Solutions, turned to the Singapore Institute of Technology and was put in touch with the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*Star).

Four A*Star researchers from its Institute of Chemical and Engineering Sciences were seconded to Westcom from last year under the agency’s Technology for Enterprise Capability Upgrading (T-Up) scheme.

After some trial and error with various microbes in A*Star’s collection, the researchers came up with one that could digest one tonne of food waste into 100kg of organic fertiliser in 24 hours — much faster than the seven days or more provided by most other solutions.

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Malaysia linked to wildlife trafficking network

sim leoi leoi The Star 10 Dec 18;

PETALING JAYA: Malaysia’s connection to a multimillion-dollar trafficking network of endangered freshwater turtles and tortoises has been uncovered by a wildlife investigation group.

Codenamed Operation Dragon and launched in 2016, the two-year investigation and 44-page report by the Wildlife Justice Commission crippled eight major networks working in India, Pakistan, Bangla­desh, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Malay­sia.

It resulted in the arrest of 30 people and the jailing of five others in Malaysia, while a suspect was subjected to the Interpol’s Red Notice after he absconded, believed to be the first for wildlife crime in the country. Some 200 potential “persons of interest” were also identified, while three more cases are ongoing in Malaysia.

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Tackle climate or face financial crash, say world's biggest investors

UN summit urged to end all coal burning and introduce substantial taxes on emissions
Damian Carrington The Guardian 10 Dec 18;

Global investors managing $32tn issued a stark warning to governments at the UN climate summit on Monday, demanding urgent cuts in carbon emissions and the phasing out of all coal burning. Without these, the world faces a financial crash several times worse than the 2008 crisis, they said.

The investors include some of the world’s biggest pension funds, insurers and asset managers and marks the largest such intervention to date. They say fossil fuel subsidies must end and substantial taxes on carbon be introduced.

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