May 24, 2018

Five Positive News Stories


The threat of climate change and environmental degradation is real.

But there's still room for optimism.

Positive action, right now, is our best chance to mitigate the threat to people and animals all around the planet. According to a UN Emissions report, encouraging optimism is essential if we are to achieve long term goals around emission reduction by 2020. 

Here are five good news stories about environmental action from around the world to get you fired up and feeling sunny about the positive actions humans can have.

Leaf banner

We’re saying ‘see you’ to single use plastics.

We’re saying ‘see you’ to single use plastics.

The anti-plastic revolution is a-go. We’re all fed up with the rising tide of non-biodegradable plastics flooding our oceans. Powerful images of plastic islands and devastating documentaries such as Blue Planet 2 are raising awareness and inciting action. And industry and legislators are responding. A tax on plastic bags in the UK has seen their use fall by 85%1. In countries like Papua New Guinea2 and Kenya they have been banned completely3. In the UK, talks are underway to ban plastic straws, cotton buds and introduce a return deposit scheme for plastic bottles, something that has been a huge success in Norway. With new technology, such as fake plastic wrap made from algae, unnecessary plastic could soon be a thing of the past.

And about time, too.

Saving the humble, but mighty, bee.

Saving the humble, but mighty, bee.

The European Union has agreed a total ban on the world’s most widely used insecticides from all fields in the next six months4 and we’re buzzing that the little guys will have a fighting chance. Bee numbers have been on the steady decline recently. Thanks to a lack of plant diversity, heavy pesticide use in modern farming and gardens being paved over, many are rightly worried about the future of the humble bee. Neonicotinoids, in common insecticides, act as harmful nerve agents, killing individual bees and reducing queen numbers.

Goodbye coal. Hello clean fuel.

Goodbye coal. Hello clean fuel.

Britain smashed its record for running without coal recently5. Calls for more solar and wind power – the cheapest and cleanest energy sources have put pressure on governments and businesses alike. With fossil fuel use due to be phased out by 2025, we’re on the way to a coal-free Britain. Although gas still makes up a large percentage of energy fuel, the prevalence of renewables is growing and growing. Being so reliant on renewables would have seemed like a sci-fi film 20 years ago, but it’s not the future anymore, it’s now.

Out of the Red. Into the Green.

Out of the Red. Into the Green.

When it comes to continued species loss6, optimism is key. Although the IUCN red list highlights threatened and endangered species, there is a Green List on the horizon. Incentivising positive conservation actions and programmes is the major focus, encouraging and promoting successful conservation stories. And the ‘IUCN Green List of Species7’ aims to complement the IUCN Red List by providing a tool for assessing the recovery of species’ populations and measuring their conservation success. Focussing on conservation optimism aims to try to recover species to healthy levels8 long term. Not just ‘save them’ from going extinct.

You're keeping carbon locked in.

You're keeping carbon locked in.

This summer, more supporters than ever before are choosing to make regular donations to Cool Earth. From sponsoring a single tree to an acre of some of the world’s most at-risk rainforest, our supporters have signed up to make this positive step. Increasingly concerned by news of rainforest loss causing temperature increase, and biodiversity increasingly threatened, individuals are taking a stand against climate change. One acre of rainforest standing is equivalent to preventing 260 tonnes of carbon from going up in smoke. In fact, protecting one acre of rainforest with Cool Earth is so efficient, you’d have to recycle two million aluminium cans to have the same impact.

And that’s a lot of lemonade.

Five Positive News Stories

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