Day 30: It's working, keep going!

As we come to the end of the month, we thought it might be nice to see what awesome stuff is happening in the world to show how our hard work is paying off! Not just environmentally, but socially as well. We hope that these facts can fill you with hope and determination to keep going on the sustainable living train.

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Child labor is declining

One thing that is certainly a worry is the how fast fashion and child labor go hand in hand. The ILO estimates that 170 million are engaged in child labor, with many in textiles are garments to satisfy the demand of consumers in Europe, the US and beyond. But research from the international labor organisation shows an approximated 40% reduction from 2000 to 2016.

Luckily, there is a decline in fast fashion too - even though it might not look like it right now. According to an article by the Guardian, in 2018, a third of consumers bought clothing once a month, down from 37% in 2016, while those buying every two or three months or less rose from 64% to 67%, according to the market research firm Mintel. So the world is fighting back against these issues.

 
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Child Mortality is Down

Medicine and technology in the health industry have come a long way! In Africa, 17% of children died before reaching the age of 5 by 1990. In 2015, that went down to 8%.

 

Scientists are recycling CO²

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Scientists from all over the world have joined up to investigate the possibility of recycling carbon dioxide emissions. It’s seen as an alternative to the costly process of storing CO² underground.

Some companies are already using CO² captured from power plants or factories to make useful products such as fuels, polymers, fertilizers, proteins and construction materials.

Katy Armstrong of the Carbon Utilisation Centre at Sheffield University says, “We need to manufacture products without increasing CO² emissions, and if we can use waste CO² to help make them, so much the better.”

This is such cool news. The cat agrees.

 

Norway’s Giant Wealth Fund Dives into Renewable Energy

Norway is to raid its €900 billion sovereign wealth fund to ramp up investment in wind and solar power projects. The intention is to double its existing commitment and spend more than €12.5 billion on schemes developing clean energy needed to combat climate change.

The government’s sovereign wealth fund—the world’s largest—has announced it is selling its stake in 134 oil and gas companies that don’t have renewable energy divisions. And it says it will for the first time inject finance into renewable energy projects that are not listed on stock markets.

This is a “historic breakthrough” according to Per Kristian Sbertoli of Norwegian climate thinktank Zero. Sverre Thornes, CEO of Norwegian pension fund KLP, said: “Clean energy is what will move us away from the dangerous and devastating pathway we are currently on.”

 

Carbon Emissions Decline in Europe

Carbon dioxide emissions rose 2.2 per cent globally in the decade to 2015. But 17 European countries, in a group of 18 developed economies that account for 28 per cent of global emissions, have shown a reduction over the same period. It was greatest in countries with the strongest renewable energy and energy efficiency policies.

“This is good news, but just the start,” said Corinne Le Quéré, co-author of the study published in the journal Nature Climate Change.

It’s so good to see how society is getting onto the same page about reducing carbon emissions.

 

Luxembourg to make public transport free

With the push of public transport to help reduce carbon emissions it’s inspiring to read how Luxembourg intends to become the first country in the world to scrap fares on all public transport, in a move aimed at alleviating its chronically bad traffic congestion. Luxembourg City has 110,000 inhabitants, but a further 400,000 people commute into the city to work. The initiative is set to take effect in March 2020.

 

Slashing Water Use

A Swedish startup has invented a nozzle for taps that could dramatically cut household water use. Altered’s Dual Flow gadget fits on to existing taps to atomise water into a mist of millions of droplets, reducing the flow of water by 98 per cent.

“From an ordinary tap, as much as 10 to 12 litres of water run out every minute,” says Kaj Mickos, who developed the device with his son-in-law, Johan Nihlén. “But only a small part of that touches your hands or rinses off the plate.”

Altered’s nozzle can also be adjusted to create a steady stream, though still at a reduced flow rate of 85 per cent compared to standard taps.

“The most important thing to us is to make a difference to the serious water situation in the world today,” says Johan Nihlén.

 

Norway to Fly Electric Planes

By 2040, Norway intends all short-haul flights leaving its airports to be on aircraft powered by electricity.

The electric aircraft market currently consists of small aircraft; the one the Norwegian pair flew barely has room for two fully grown adults to fly together. But Falk-Peterson says that will change very quickly.

“Then about three years ago our board of directors went down to Airbus, in Toulouse,” says Falk-Peterson. “Airbus told us they had been doing a lot of work in this area already. And Boeing, through Zunum Aero and also with Nasa. That’s why we decided to have a programme to electrify the flights in Norway.”

All-electric planes will have benefits beyond emissions – they will need smaller runways, which means they can use smaller airports

 

The society we live in is slowly getting onto the same page about climate change, and we need to keep going! Keep doing whatever we can in our own lives and encouraging others to do the same to save our beautiful world!

We hope you have enjoyed the month of Sustainable September. Remember, every bit counts, keep up the good work, and don’t forget to check the CoGo app for awesome businesses doing awesome things!

Love from the CoGo Team

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