Tips for a Greener Future & the Top 5 Happy Eco News Stories for November 8, 2021
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This week we have two blog posts. The first one was by Life and Career Coach, Ella Clark who tells us about an event she went to about sustainable travel and a green future. Our second guest post is an interview with Job van Hooijdonk, the co-founder of Regreener and he tells us how he went from lawyer to green entrepreneur. We also have stories about world leaders that have pledged $400 billion for clean energy, a gorilla conservation success story, the US’s decision to protect the Joshua tree against climate change, China’s pledge to stop building new coal energy plants, the launch of the #SeeYouInCourt campaign against polluting corporations.
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So how does a self-confessed travel junkie fit in with green jobs and sustainability as he flies around the world with his signature Shemagh scarf and his wide-eyed curiosity?
Well, Simon Reeve was championing the cause of traveling as a way to open eyes and borders, and pointing out that our need to journey, is the “essence of our species”. “Us traveling gives an economic incentive to protect and preserve” … for people to protect their nature reserves, their marine parks, their country and ways of life. But more than this (he stabbed the air at this point),
“We need to travel responsibly, with our eyes open, to understand more about the light and the shade”
To see how others live, and the interconnected nature of our lives, and to share the benefits for the traveler, and the countries we travel to…[read more].
Job van Hooijdonk used to be a corporate lawyer until he decided to switch gears and focus on the environment. He is now the co-founder of Regreener, a platform for carbon compensation and investments in a greener future.
1. Thank you for sharing your story with us Job. You had an interesting career shift, tell us what motivated you to switch from being a corporate lawyer to entering the environmental field.
Before founding Regreener, I worked as an M&A and Banking & Finance lawyer for 3,5 years. During my time as a lawyer, I saw a lot of businesses and finance structures. This taught me a lot about the world behind corporates. It was a good place to start my career, but as the time went by, I started to realize that this was not how I wanted to spend my time. It felt like I was wasting my time constantly working on M&A documentation. The motivation for my job disappeared, and I realized that I wanted to do something more meaningful to me, and that I really wanted to contribute to a greener and more sustainable future…[read more].
The Happy Eco News Weekly Top 5
World leaders have promised to make electricity both more sustainable and accessible A group of governments and the private sector on Friday collectively promised more than $400 billion (just over €340 billion) at a high-level summit that called for more urgent action to curb catastrophic climate change . The commitments, made on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York , also envisage reliable access to electricity for hundreds of millions of people. What are they promising? The pledges include projects to expand access to electricity in developing countries and improve energy efficiency. More than 35 countries — from small developing island states to major emerging and developed economies — have made significant new energy commitments in the form of energy pacts, the UN said. Several large companies also made pledges, including TotalEnergies, Schneider Electric and Google. Among the promises is a German commitment to increase its own proportion of renewable energy in total electricity consumption to 65% by 2030. Berlin has pledged to support partner countries in expanding innovative technologies such as green hydrogen and “power to x,” an innovation to use surplus electric power. The government has also committed to providing €7 billion toward speeding…[read more].
The NGO that helped establish World Gorilla Day — the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund — has learned a few important lessons for the conservation of gorillas and other species over the years. Firstly, conservation can’t happen without local support: when community members they work with come to understand the importance of the habitat that surrounds them, the project can succeed. Another lesson is that conservation takes time, money and diversification. “By engaging rather than excluding communities and ensuring that local people benefit from conservation, we have found that we can protect wildlife with a footprint that is 15 times smaller than that for mountain gorillas.” This article is an analysis for World Gorilla Day 2021 by the chief scientific officer of the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund, and does not necessarily reflect the views of Mongabay. I saw my first wild gorillas in Rwanda in 2002 and I was immediately drawn in by their power, their beauty, and the awareness that these amazing creatures were, despite their size and strength, at risk of disappearing from our planet. I was hooked. I’ve been privileged to work alongside scientists and conservationists in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo ever since,… [read more].
A federal court in Los Angeles this week ruled that under former President Donald Trump, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service violated the law when it failed to list the Joshua tree as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act — a decision that the Biden administration has continued to defend. The U.S. District Court in the Central District of California said in its ruling on Monday that the USFWS now has one year to reconsider its decision and must take into account all scientific evidence, including climate change models, when deciding whether the Joshua tree should be protected under the ESA. WildEarth Guardians — which first filed a petition to ensure the tree was protected in 2015 and launched a legal challenge after the service declined to list the species in 2019 — called the ruling “groundbreaking” and “a monumental step forward for the Joshua tree.” The Court order now directs the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to reconsider its decision, taking into account the…[read more].
Xi Jinping made his address in a video recording at the annual summit China will not build new coal-fire projects abroad, a move that could be pivotal in tackling global emissions. President Xi Jinping made the announcement in his address at the United Nations General Assembly. China has been funding coal projects in countries like Indonesia and Vietnam under a massive infrastructure project known as the Belt and Road initiative. But it has been under pressure to end the financing, as the world tries to meet Paris climate agreement targets. “China will step up support for other developing countries in developing green and low-carbon energy, and will not build new coal-fired power projects abroad,” Mr Xi said in a video recording at the annual summit. No further details were provided, but the move could limit the expansion of coal plants in many developing countries under China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). The BRI has seen China fund trains, roads, ports and coal plants in numerous countries, many of them developing nations. For the first time in several years however, it did not fund any coal projects in the first half of 2021. China is also the … [read more].
Big Oil is facing a rising wave of climate litigation. As the pivotal COP26 climate conference nears, there is a sense of betrayal within the climate movement that setting more targets is becoming futile. The Paris climate agreement not only lacks ambition, but commitments are simply not being met. Fossil fuel companies meanwhile have been able to maintain business as usual, even if some have set net-zero emission targets for 2050. Communities on the front line of climate change, and of fossil fuel pollution, feel that they have been left with little choice but to sue the polluters in court. Following the landmark judgment against Shell in May that forced the fossil fuel giant to cut emissions by 45% by 2030, a tidal wave of climate litigation is set to crash on courts globally. Today’s launch of the #SeeYouInCourt campaign by the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) — a federation of 192 human rights groups in more than 100 countries — is part of a coordinated litigation action against polluting corporations. Chilean NGO Observatorio Ciudadano and two other organizations are filing a protection action against climate impacts and incidents of massive intoxication caused by coal-fired power plants… [read more].
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