The world is going through a lot. Instead of focusing on more bad news, we’ve rounded up the most encouraging environmental stories that made headlines this month
Constantly consuming negative news about the severity of the climate crisis can be highly discouraging. So it's important to also acknowledge the progress that's being made to give us the hope that we can turn things around.
Let's celebrate the environmental wins that happened in June and stay motivated to protect the planet!
1. Aquatic drones are swallowing plastic waste
Dutch company RanMarine has created floating drones called WasteSharks to clean up "plastic waste and unwanted biomass from our waters." Inspired by whale sharks, which swim with their mouths wide open to capture food, these drones can clear up to 500 kg of debris per day and hold up to 160 litres of trash.
2. Study finds polar bears are finding new ways to survive
Photo by Hans-Jurgen Mager on UnsplashAs global warming continues to threaten the habitats of species around the globe, a new study is showing signs of hope. Polar bears normally ambush their seal prey from a platform of sea ice, but this habitat is diminishing due to rising temperatures. However, a group of genetically distinct polar bears in Greenland is now using a mix of glacier ice and snow as a platform for hunting food, even though this landscape is much slushier than the sea ice they are used to.
3. Canada commits to banning single-use plastics by end of 2022
Photo by Brian Yurasits on UnsplashThe government of Canada has published final regulations on a plan to prohibit the manufacture and import of harmful single-use plastics, such as checkout bags, cutlery, foodservice ware (made from or containing problematic plastics that are hard to recycle), ring carriers and straws (with some exceptions). The ban will come into effect in December 2022.
4. Global steel marker is working towards decarbonizing the industry
Photo by Bakhrom Tursunov on UnsplashGiant steel maker ArcelorMittal is committed to cutting carbon emissions and reducing the industry's reliance on coal by seeking new solutions in the green hydrogen space. The company has launched a new $100-million “XCarb Accelerator Programme” to fund breakthrough companies and innovative technologies working towards decarbonization in steelmaking.
5. Eastern monarch butterfly population is in recoveryPhoto by Roberto Carlos Román Don on Unsplash
WWF Mexico has released a new survey that reveals the presence of monarch butterflies in Mexico’s forest was 35 percent greater this past winter compared to the year before. While the beautiful species had been declining for several decades, this latest study indicates that conservation efforts have been working—and must continue in order to sustain this important part of the ecosystem.
While we still have a lot of work to do, we hope these pieces of good news will encourage you to think positively as we work towards a better future.