Sunday 19 May 2024

Positive News Spring 24


Purple Daisy by Pixabay

Yay for Positive News!


Summer is just around the corner & I felt it time to bring some uplifting news onto your 'ickle screens! 

Check out our Positive News Section for some other Feel Good Stories too 😊

1) Plastics Ban 1st October 2023

The single used plastics ban has finally taken effect in England from Autumn 2023. 

Previous bans have been introduced in Europe, Scotland & Wales so we’re a little behind the curve ball but good news all the same. 

Some items are restricted rather than banned such as plastic containers for catering as long as it’s pre-packaged or packaged at point of sale.


20 useful tips on how to reduce your plastics can be found here at:


2) EU Vote to Reduce Plastic Pellet Spills

MEPs voted in favour April 2024 to place stricter penalties on plastic pellet spills. 

Plastic is frequently transported in small pellet form, known as nurdles which can be spilled during loading or shipping & can make its way into water ways. 

They can easily be mistaken for food by marine life & additionally add to our plastic pollution.

It's great to see that 538 MEPS voted in favour, with only 32 against the proposed restrictions. More details will emerge after the June sittings.

https://www.europarl.europa.eu/news/en/press-room/20240419IPR20570/microplastics-meps-want-stricter-rules-to-reduce-plastic-pellet-losses

Read more about hidden plastics including nurdles in my blog post:

https://www.lovelierplanet.com/2020/02/beware-of-hidden-plastics.html

Dolphin Underwater by Pixabay

3) Cargo Ships Could be Powered by Wings?

A new wind powered cargo ship set off on its maiden voyage during Summer 2023. 123ft wings (made from the same material as wind turbines) are folded out to enable the ship to be powered by wind, cutting down its emissions by 30%.

This new innovation was designed by a team in the UK headed by John Cooper, who used to work with McLaren Team Formula One.


4) Textiles More Eco Friendly

Clothing can often be discarded when no longer used & according to this BBC article less than 1% is recycled into new clothes. What a shocking waste! Some natural materials will eventually break down however products such as polyester are synthetic & won’t easily decompose.

Items such as spandex are nylon (synthetic) based however the Lycra team are looking at ways to use corn based material to create a more environmentally friendly product in the future.

Other innovative ideas to reduce wasteful products include: A U.S. company using material made from the roots of mushrooms, a U.K. company taking advantage of soil based bacteria to help dye products, as it naturally produces rainbow colours.  

Plus a Finnish company using wood pulp which is spun into thread for making textiles. The only by-product from this process is heat which is pumped into the local heating system. Win, win! 

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-66985595

Meanwhile Alison Coomber a design graduate from University of Bristol has made highly colourful blinds using old Sainsbury’s shopping bags.

https://www.positive.news/lifestyle/the-green-grads-designing-the-future/


Aged Denim Photo by Julia Kuzenkov from Pexels

Additionally, Justine Aldersey-Williams, an artist based in the Wirral managed to create her own pair of jeans made from indigo & flax grown in her own allotment!

https://www.positive.news/economics/the-woman-who-grew-her-own-pair-of-jeans

If you have any clothes to get rid of & don’t have a clothes bank near you, why not order a free donation bag from Oxfam & bung it in the post free! 

https://www.oxfam.org.uk/donate/donate-by-post-for-free/

5) Using eDNA to Track Biodiversity

The Natural History Museum are looking at innovative ways to track species in various environments using eDNA. This can help build up a picture of plants & wildlife that are in threat & need our help, whilst also tracking down where species may be thriving. Biodiversity is key to a healthy eco system.

https://www.nhm.ac.uk/discover/what-is-environmental-dna-edna.html

Check out this video to learn more: 


6) Renewables Reaching New Highs

The world got more than 30% of its electricity from renewables last year (in 2023). According to Positive News 'China, led the charge, accounting for 51% of additional global solar generation & 60% of new global wind generation'.

Let’s hope the momentum continues πŸ’š



What's Happening this Spring?

πŸ¦‹ No Mow May! 
- This is a campaign to encourage gardeners to leave their lawns un-mown each May, which is a great time to allow for lawn flowers to feed the emerging insects from their Winter slumber.

Councils are also joining the movement & wildflowers are becoming more abundant which is great for bees, butterflies & moths which ultimately helps with pollination. 
https://www.plantlife.org.uk/campaigns/nomowmay/

Did You Know 'We’ve lost approximately 97% of flower-rich meadows since the 1930’s'?

🌼 World Bee Day – Look out for World Bee Day on 20th May 2024

For stories, infographics & factsheets why not check out the following bee-lightful website! https://www.fao.org/world-bee-day/en/ 

Dandelions in Mug Photo by dagmara-dombrovska from Pexels

🌱 
World Biodiversity Day

The International Day for Biological Diversity on 22nd May 2024 (or World Biodiversity Day) is a United Nations international day for the promotion of biodiversity issues. 

The theme this year is Be Part of the Plan, encouraging all stakeholders to come together for a solution. https://www.undp.org/biodiversity-day-2024


🌍 World Environment Day

The World Environment Day will be on 5th June 2024. The theme in 2023 was on Plastic Pollution. 
https://www.worldenvironmentday.global/

Check out this video for 2024 - 'We Are Generation Restoration'.


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