6 November 2023 | Muriel Cozier

SCI's Daily Digest: your one-stop shop for all of the day's news in science based industry

In today's Daily Digest, £14 million in funding announced to support the UK's quantum technology sector, the UK and Germany have established an agreement to boost cooperation in developing a path to net-zero, and more.


The UK government has used the UK National Quantum Technologies Showcase held in London to announce £14 million in funding, aimed at supporting the development of the country’s quantum technology sector. The UK has also signed an innovation agreement with Australia and the Netherlands to deepen collaboration on quantum technology.

The UK government has launched what is said to be the world’s first AI Safety Institute which will test the safety of emerging types of AI. The new global hub will be backed by leading AI companies and nations.

The Parliamentary Science, Innovation and Technology Committee is to question the Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology on the UK’s latest position on regulating and safely optimising AI. Urgent concerns include misrepresentation, and the proliferation of discriminatory and misleading material. The inquiry will take place on 8 November.


The UK government has said that the upcoming Kings Speech will include new laws to ‘set the country on the right path for the long term.’ The speech will build on the Prime Minister’s priority to grow the economy.


The UK government and Germany have established an agreement to boost cooperation in developing a path to net-zero. The partnership will remove regulatory barriers on renewables and the partners will share knowledge on industrial buildings and decarbonisation.

The European Commission has approved, under state aid rules, funding of €2.4 billion Czech scheme to support the construction and operation of new or converted sustainable biomethane production plants. The measure will contribute to the implementation of the country’s nation energy and climate plan.

The European Commission has approved, under state aid rules, funding of €659 million, for a French measure to support Verkor in researching and developing new production processes for lithium-ion batteries for EVs. Verkor has committed to sharing knowhow gained through the project with industry and academia.


Ian Lovell, Chair of the UK’s Environment Agency gave a speech at Anthropy 2023, in which he warns that we are taking our soils for granted. ‘Our constant use has not been without risk. Land to grow root crops maize or winter cereals has caused degradation,’ he said. He also called for the sharing of soil data by a wide range of society to be used for the newly launched ‘Big Soil Stocktake’ which aims to provide total date transparency and accessibility on soil data across all sectors.

The UK government’s cross-party House of Lords Horticulture Committee has released a report which says that the horticulture sector is underprioritized and unappreciated by policy makers, leaving holes in the UK’s food security and ability to meet net-zero. The report adds that the sector is struggling to attract new talent and is perceived as unattractive ad inaccessible.


The UK Parliamentary Environmental Audit Committee will hold an evidence session with the government’s Energy Security and Net-Zero Minister, and the Ministerial Head of the Delegation for the UK at COP28 to assess what the UK’s priorities are across a range of areas including climate financing and sustainable cooling.


The European Commission has authorised the Nuvaxovid XBB.1.5 adapted Covid-19 vaccine developed by Novavax. The Commission said that it is the first protein-based adapted vaccine authorised for this autumn and winter season.

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