The general news of December was the report published by the UN International Resource Panel that uses the example of houses and cars to highlight the double virtuous effect of materials efficiency - as such and with huge impact on carbon footprint - see IISD, December 19th
And a very interesting paper (in German) with the Swiss real examples of decoupling economic growth and the use of materials.
A continuous stream of analysis and projects in the field of critical materials be rare earth (more US public funding), battery materials (IBM substituting critical battery materials with seawater?), EVs vs fuel cells supply chain (Toyota analysis)... or water (the Guardian demonstrates that violence related to scarcity of water increases).
And some great contributions from universities: an innovative combination of zeolites, gelatin and cellulose for capturing CO2 at Chalmers in Sweden, plastic wastes as raw materials for fuel cells at NTU in Singapore, further work on developing silicon anodes for batteries at NIMS in Japan... and a thorough review of Graphene taking off in composites for planes and cars.
Financial Times also reviews the many ways businesses now use AI to reduce waste and to maintain products and materials in use.
Not to forget many sustainability initiatives with the first commercial electric flight in Canada, Rolls Royce announcing its bet to beat the 2017 Siemens electric plane speed record, a wide range of initiatives promoted by Brunel University and Saint Gobain in order to improve materials efficiency and recycling in the construction industry ... and the Citeo-Mars-Nestle-Total alliance for industrial chemical recycling of plastic packaging in France.
Finally some good news (be deals, awards, fundings, new product launches or papers) coming from our WMF start ups with Carbios (France), Citrine (USA), Kebotix (USA), Nawa (France), Polystyvert (Canada), Rein4Ced (Belgium), Safi Organics (Kenya) and Woodoo (France).