The Top 5 Happy Eco News Stories for May 2, 2022

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This week have a guest post by Sharon Michelle, MSc Psychology who talks about the importance of making changes so we can protect our planet for future generations. We also have stories about the $1 billion fund for carbon removal, a koala IVF that could save them from extinction, the climate benefits of biochar, the ecofriendly way to keep slugs off your plants, and how plastic is being turned into pavement slabs.

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Guest Post by: Sharon Michelle, MSc Psychology

Scientists are warning we only have a short window of opportunity to make significantly positive differences to the outcome of climate change. But this has been overshadowed in the mainstream news by what is perceived as more pressing matters at hand.

I need to talk about a pervading sense that someone else will sort out everything out sometime in the future. I need to talk about the enormity of the situation. And I need to know why we aren’t asking more questions about what seems like a sense of a total lack of urgency to change our ways?

The horrendous invasion of Ukraine highlights how our comfortable lives can be impacted when the cost and flow of fossil fuels are threatened and disrupted. Germany is using this as an opportunity to bring their deadlines of net-zero forwards, but other Governments seem to be simply looking to change suppliers. This means habits will not be changed that much and disruption of the status quo is avoided…[read more].

The Happy Eco News Weekly Top 5

  1. Stripe, Shopify, Alphabet, Meta and McKinsey Will Spend Almost $1 billion on Carbon Removal

Takeaways:

  • The Frontier Fund is a $925 million advance market commitment that has been set up by software firm Stripe to invest in carbon removal.
  • The funds will go towards evaluating removed offsets based on the permanence, the footprint of technology, the capacity the solution offers and the environmental justice impact.
  • Funding for this plan comes from other companies including Alphabet, Shopify, Meta and McKinsey…[read more].

2. Koala IVF Could Help Save Species From Extinction

Takeaways:

  • Scientists are looking for ways to protect koala populations from extinction.
  • They have found that freezing koala sperm and impregnating female koalas using assisted reproduction technology will help save the animals by 2050.
  • The researchers found that this strategy would be 5 to 12 times cheaper than current koala breeding methods and would not compromise their genetic diversity…[read more].

3. Biochar Has Potential To Enhance Agriculture In California & Mitigate Climate Change

Takeaways:

  • Biochar is an organic matter that when burned in a low oxygen environment, it can create a very stable form of carbon, bio-gas and vapour.
  • It can sequester and retain atmospheric carbon and can store it in its soils for hundreds of years.
  • Companies in California, are trying to find ways to use biochar to help farmers use substantially less water, increase yields, and sequester CO2 from the atmosphere…[read more].

4. The Science-Backed Ways to Keep Slugs Off Your Plants (and No, it’s Not Salt or Beer)

Takeaways:

  • Slug pellets that contain metaldehyde have been banned in the UK as it is harmful to birds, amphibians and mammals that eat the pellets or the slugs.
  • Slugs are an important part of the ecosystem and food webs for birds, hedgehogs, badgers, slow worms, frogs, toads, and all other kinds of things feeding on them.
  • To ensure slugs won’t eat your plants, try planting shrubby or woody plants, or those with waxy or furry leaves which are less attractive to slugs…[read more].

5. This Congolese City is Transforming its Plastic Problem into an Asset

Takeaways:

  • In Bukavu, thousands of plastic bottles have been clogging the hydropower turbines in the Rizizi river.
  •  Elie Mapenzi Matabaro has found a profitable way of reducing waste by turning plastic waste into paving slabs.
  • His company, FDA Group, is able to provide the city with economic resources, jobs, and environmental protection…[read more].

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