We spend 90% of our time in the buildings where we live and work, shop and conduct business, in the structures that keep us warm in winter and cool in summer. But immense energy is required to source and manufacture building materials, to power construction sites, to maintain and renew the built environment. In 2019, building operations and construction activities together accounted for 38% of global energy-related CO2 emissions, the highest level ever recorded. To ensure that the Paris climate targets are met, the building and construction industry needs to become a climate leader by moving towards net zero construction. Its CO2 emissions need to be cut in half by 2030 for building stock to be carbon free by 2050, according to a recent report by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). In response, a raft of new net zero building initiatives are focused on curbing emissions across the whole building lifecycle. DW looks at 5 key points in understanding the … [Read more...] about 5 things to know about carbon-free construction
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Is the end of homeschooling in sight? As schools prepare to reopen their doors, we think we heard a collective sigh of relief coming from parents and guardians all over the country! And it's good news for the children too who are no doubt excited to get back in the classroom, back with their friends and back in the playground. It's time to get them kitted out for life back in the classroom But if you feel like you've been caught on the back foot and aren't quite as ready in terms of all those school essentials as you would normally be, then never fear. There's still time to get the last minute uniform you need from Marks & Spencer AND it will be delivered safely, straight to your door. And while they might not look forward to swapping out tracksuits for smart trousers, the M&S range is designed with style in mind! So whether you need to kit them out head-to-toe or just need a few pieces to top up their options, M&S has got you covered with … [Read more...] about Kids going back to school? Don’t worry it’s not too late to kit them out for the classroom (and it won’t break the bank!)
The maker of top cleaning brands including Dettol and Cillit Bang, Reckitt Benckiser (RB), has reported a recovery in condom sales thanks to relaxed coronavirus restrictions. The FTSE 100 company, which has been among the few winners in the COVID-19 crisis to date thanks to its household hygiene and healthcare products, reported a 9.5% lift in net revenue to £3.5bn during its third quarter. RB said that was mainly driven by continued strong demand for disinfectants - with sales of Dettol-branded sprays, wipes and liquid up more than 50% on the same July-September period last year. Like-for-like sales were almost 20% higher in the company's hygiene business and 12.6% up in its health division, which includes Durex condoms and Mucinex cold medicine. RB had pointed to a sharp drop in demand for condoms during the spring virus lockdowns across Europe. Advertisement But it said on Tuesday: "Following a more challenging first half of the year, … [Read more...] about Coronavirus: Durex enjoys ‘double-digit’ revenue growth in Reckitt Benckiser sales boom
HOUSEHUNTERS in England and Northern Ireland looking to buy a home usually pay stamp duty on properties over £125,000. But it's £500,000 right now thanks to a stamp duty holiday - so what is stamp duty and how is it calculated? We run-down the rules for stamp duty in England and Northern Ireland, as rates differ for those buying homes in Scotland and Wales . What is stamp duty? Stamp duty land tax (SDLT) is a lump sum payment most people have to pay when buying a property or land. How much buyers have to fork out varies depending on the price and type of property. A stamp duty holiday was introduced because of the coronavirus pandemic to get the property market moving again. It means there is no stamp duty for properties up to £500,000 until March 31, 2021. But chancellor Rishi Sunak is preparing to extend the stamp duty holiday by three months until the end of June. The usual stamp duty rates when there is not a holiday mean first-time buyers … [Read more...] about Stamp duty calculator: how much is it and when does the holiday end?
As of Tuesday, the German capital is one year into its five-year "rent freeze," and the data collected so far has given both opponents and supporters fuel for their arguments. A survey published last week by property ad portal ImmoScout24 found that while Berlin's average rent has indeed dropped in the past year, by 7.8%, the number of new flats on the market eligible for a rent reduction had dropped too — by some 30%. That has had a major effect on the competition for new apartments, ImmoScout24 said, with an average of 214 people answering each rental advert in January 2021, compared to 128 in the same month last year. Many cities around the world have some kind of rent control measures in place, but Berlin's rent cap law, in effect since February 2020, is unique. It meant that rents for 90% of Berlin's apartments were frozen for five years at the level they were at in June 2019. New rental contracts could not be above that level, and as of November 2020, any existing rents … [Read more...] about Berlin’s revolutionary rent cap — success or flop?