A Celebration of  Major Environment-Saving Achievements of Individual Countries

Countries in Alphabetical Order

world2WORLD        top
RENEWABLE ENERGY NOW CHEAPER THAN FOSSIL FUELS WORLDWIDE: Onshore wind and solar PV are set by 2020 to consistently offer a less expensive source of new electricity than the least-cost fossil-fuel alternative without financial assistance,” said IRENA, a government-backed body that aims to support countries in their transition to sustainable energy sources.  May, 2019, @MEP
TRUCK MAKERS REV UP FOR ROLLOUT OF ELECTRIC AND HYDROGEN CELL BIG RIGS: Tesla, Toyota, Hyundai and Nikola are now focused on creating electric and hydrogen cell heavy commercial trucks. Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk says its Semi’s range could hit 600 miles, but for now most of the focus is on companies that need short distance vehicles, such as for drayage services to or from ports or rail yards. UPS is particularly interested in these trucks. The next hurtle is to create more recharging stations to match the growing electric vehicle market.   Oct, 2018
• 13 CITIES THAT ARE STARTING TO BAN CARS: Madrid will bar non-resident vehicles and only have zero-emissions public transportation. Oslo will ban all cars from its city center by 2019, changing 35 miles of roads to bike lanes. Madrid will ban cars from 500 acres of its city center by 2020, changing roads to pedestrian ways. Hamburg will only allow bikes and pedestrians to enter certain areas. Other sustainable cities include, Stuttgart, Düsseldorf, Copenhagen, Paris, London, Brussels, Berlin, Mexico City, Bogotá, San Francisco, New York City, and Chengdu. June, 2018
• SCIENTISTS ACCIDENTALLY CREATE MUTANT ENZYME THAT EATS PLASTIC BOTTLES: The breakthrough, spurred by the discovery of plastic-eating bugs at a Japanese dump, could help solve the global plastic pollution crisis. April, 2018
• UNILEVER’S SUSTAINABLE BRANDS ARE FASTEST GROWING: This large company now has 26 sustainable brands, including Dove, Lipton and Knorr, which have grown 46% faster than other brands in its portfolio. This is a strong indication of consumer’s appetite for “brands that a social impact.” May, 2018
• APPLE NOW BUILDS ALUMINUM CASES WITHOUT EMITTING GREENHOUSE GASES: This cell phone maker has teamed with Alcoa and Rio Tinto Aluminum to create a “revolutionary” new technology that can smelt aluminum parts, producing oxygen as a byproduct instead of the pollutant CO2. May, 2018 
• SHIPPING INDUSTRY TO REDUCE EMISSIONS BY HALF BY 2050: The United Nations adopted a first-ever strategy to reduce the pollution from commercial ships. If it were a country, the ship’s CO2 emissions would be the sixth largest in the world, equal to Germany. April, 2018
• LITHIUM BATTERY TECHNOLOGY TO INCREASE STORAGE UP TO 40%: New research which includes the material silicon, now allows energy storage in lithium batteries to increase by up to 40%. This is a huge step for batteries and the storage of renewable energy, such as electric cars, storing electric energy in homes and many other applications. March, 2018
• 19 COUNTRIES AGREE TO NOT USE COAL FOR ENERGY BY 2030: Led by Canada and the United Kingdom at the 2017 COP23 meetings in Bonn, Germany, 19 countries agreed to end the use of coal by 2030. Other key members include France, Finland, Italy, Mexico, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium and Costa Rica – many of whom were already well on the way to phasing out coal for power generation.  Nov, 2017
• ‘SMART’ SOFTWARE ALLOW RANGERS TO REDUCE POACHING: Spatial Monitoring and Reporting Tool (SMART) is a new free open-source product that allows patrolling of remote areas to be more strategic and effective. When compiled and analyzed, inputed data can help rangers adjust their management and patrolling efforts to meet an area’s specific challenges. Oct, 2017
• GOOGLE OFFERS ‘COLLECT EARTH,’ A TOOL FOR MONITORING LAND: Google’s Collect Earth is a free tool for countries and orgs to monitor land changes that were previously untrackable, such as deforestation and other types of land exploitation. Oct, 2017
• ‘SALT’ ALLIANCE AIMS TO TACKLE ILLEGAL FISHING ON A GLOBAL SCALE: Seafood Alliance for Legality and Traceability, SALT, has been created as a global effort to shore up legality in the seafood industry. The goal is to more effectively document and trace seafood and use that information to empower fisheries managers and reduce illegal fishing, which will bring the world closer to long-term sustainability of the industry.  Oct, 2017
• TIGERS ARE NOW BETTER PROTECTED: Despite a 95% reduction in numbers since 1900, or 3,900 tigers still living in the wild, this animal now benefits from a number of actions from around the world. China has created a massive national park (50% larger than Yellowstone NP) to protect the habitat of its Siberian tigers and leopards. Laos is shutting down its commercial tiger farms, which sell tiger skins and body parts. This trade has also encouraged poachers to kill wild tigers. Other encouraging news can be read here. July, 2017
• DROP IN WIND ENERGY COSTS ADDS PRESSURE FOR GOVERNMENTS TO RETHINK: Countries now realize that building onshore wind farms are the same price as gas powered stations, but can deliver energy at nearly half the price. ScottishPower’s Keith Anderson, the firm’s chief operating officer, has indicated that onshore wind has been proven to be easy to deliver, and was now “phenomenally competitive” on price. July, 2017
• GOOGLE’S NEW SUN MAP REVEALS VIABILITY FOR SOLAR PANELS ON ROOF: This company has created the incredible Sun Map, a Google Map showing how viable your home is for solar. Example: For Oklahoma City, it requires an estimated 3.7 million MWh of electricity to function. If every viable roof in the city went solar it would provide a staggering 5.9 million MWh. March, 2017
• NEW HIGH EFFICIENCY SOLID-STATE BATTERY INVENTED: Two University of Texas scientists, John Goodenough (inventor of the lithium-ion battery) and Maria Helena Braga have invented a solid-state battery that could potentially revolutionize batteries for cell phones, electric cars, and stationary energy storage. These batteries have 3x the energy density (ie electric cars could drive up to three times farther without a charge), recharge in minutes not hours, operate in cold and hot temperatures, use green materials (glass not lithium), are non-combustible, and are low cost. Feb, 2017
• GOVERNMENTS SUED BY INDIVIDUALS: Across the globe, governments are being brought to court by the people demanding that more action be done to fight climate change in their respective countries, ranging from Pakistan to the United States. May, 2017
• CARBON EMISSIONS STAYED THE SAME IN 2016: For the third year in a row, global carbon emissions stayed the same while the world economy continued to grow. March, 2017
FIGHTING CLIMATE CHANGE HAS NOW BECOME A PROFITABLE BUSINESS: The cost of generating energy through solar and wind sources is now the same or less than that of coal and natural gas, thus creating a huge opportunity for investors to make more money and protect the environment at the same time. Dec, 2016
ANTARCTICA HAS THE LARGEST MARINE PROTECTED AREA: 25 governments unanimously agreed to create the world’s largest marine protected area of 1.55 million square kilometers in the Ross Sea around Antarctica. Oct, 2016
WORLD GOVERNMENTS ACT TO PROTECT ALL 8 PANGOLIN SPECIES FROM INTERNATIONAL TRADE: The Pangolin is the world’s most trafficked and endangered animal, with their scales and meat going primarily to China and Vietnam. CITES (Convention on Intern. Trade in Endangered Species) has recommended that governments focus on this issue, which is a huge win for this animal. Sep, 2016
• MILLIONS MARCH AROUND THE WORLD FOR HUMAN RIGHTS AND SAVING THE PLANET: On January 21, 2017, people in every state in the USA (670 events) and numerous cities around the world (Paris, London, Tel Aviv, Melbourne, Barcelona, Mexico City, Berlin, to name a few) rallied together for the protection of human rights and the environment. It was a peaceful march with no arrests and a certain indication of world solidarity. Jan, 2017
EXTREME POVERTY REDUCED BY OVER 1 BILLION PEOPLE IN LAST 23 YEARS: Each day, 130,000 people move out of extreme poverty, which has been facilitated by more effective health-care delivery programs and ATM cards provided by aid orgs. that have enabled people to buy the most essential items. (The environment can only be saved with a stabilized  population.) Dec, 2016
IVORY TRADE TO BE REDUCED SIGNIFICANTLY: As the #1 and #2  importers of ivory from Africa, China and USA have now banned the trade of ivory, which will save up to 20,000 elephants a year, Dec, 2016
HYDROFLUOROCARBONS TO BE BANNED IN 200 COUNTRIES: Rwanda hosted a hugely successful 28th Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol, with 200 countries now phasing down the use of hydrofluorocarbons, or HFC’s, which are super-polluting, powerful greenhouse gases. Oct, 2016, @MEP
177 COUNTRIES AND EUROPEAN UNION SIGN COP21 PARIS AGREEMENT: Of the 195 countries that adopted the FIRST UNIVERSAL CLIMATE AGREEMENT in Paris, France in November, 2015, 177 have now signed this agreement, including two new countries, Seychelles and Gambia. Signature signing began on Earth Day, April 22, 2016 and allows for up to one year for countries to sign. “This is a historic day. We are in a race against time,” warned the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon. Oct, 2016

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AFGHANISTAN FIGHTS TO PROTECT ENVIRONMENT: Farkhunda Ateel has won the prestigious Equator Prize on behalf of her Rural Green Environment Organization, which works in the remote province of Badakhshan to restore ecosystems, create jobs to stop illegal logging, hunting and fishing as well as improve food security. Dec, 2016

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ENVIRONMENTAL TAX: The Albanian government in 2016 made every ship anchored in its ports pay an environmental tax to help prevent pollution in its waters. Nov, 2015

algeriaflagAlgeria        top
• ALGERIA INTENDS TO DEVELOP SUSTAINABLE FISHERIES: In an effort to protect the country from overfishing, Algeria attends a workshop to learn more on how to develop sustainable fisheries and aquaculture. April, 2014

andorraflagAndorra        top
ANDORRA, ALONG WITH OTHER PYRENEES COUNTRIES, HAS RECEIVED €3 MILLION FROM THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION TO STUDY THE EFFECTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE ON THE LOCAL ENVIRONMENT: This small country will study temperature fluctuations caused by climate change and effects on the ecosystem of high mountain lakes and streams. May, 2016

angolaflagAngola        top
ANGOLA CRACKS DOWN ON CONSUMPTION OF BUSHMEAT: Angola has struggled to recover after a brutal civil war and people had little choice but to eat bushmeat, meat from wild animals such as elephant or giraffe. This environmental crisis has lead the government to step up its policing and conservation policies by confiscating ivory. June, 2016

antinguabarbadosflagAntigua and Barbuda        top
NEW ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AND MANAGEMENT ACT OF 2014: This law enacted serious legal consequences for illegal hunting, fishing and polluting as well as establishing the Sustainable Island Resource Framework Fund that provides financial aid for research projects regarding sustainability and conservation of natural resources. April, 2015, 2014, 2014

argentinaflagArgentina        top
ARGENTINA’S DEFORESTATION INDUSTRY WILL ALWAYS HAVE A SUM TOTAL OF ZERO TREES LOSS: Argentina’s forests have long been in danger of being totally eliminated, but with new laws that will control and manage the deforestation industry, the rate of deforestation won’t outpace the natural growth of its forests. Sep, 2013

armeniaflagArmenia        top
• A RECORD BREAKING YEAR FOR ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION IN ARMENIA: Since, 2005, the Armenia Tree Project has educated thousands of schoolchildren on the importance of protecting the environment all over Armenia. The Project claims that planting trees is not enough, teaching respect, care, and understanding of nature is paramount.  Jan, 2016

australiaflagAustralia        top
EMISSIONS START FALLING THANKS TO RENEWABLES BOOM: Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions will stop rising and gradually start to fall over the next three years as the country feels the effects of the recent renewable energy boom, engineering researchers say. Academics from the Australian National University estimate national emissions will dip by 3%-4% by 2022, ending the year-on-year increases recorded since the abolition of the carbon price scheme. Oct, 2019
LEADING THE CHARGE FOR RENEWABLES: Record-breaking rooftop solar installations are helping the country increase its renewable energy generation. By 2030, renewables could make up more than half the electricity generated in the land down under, according to an analysis out Wednesday from a team of researchers. That’s thanks to individual states that have set their own renewable energy targets. May, 2019, @MEP
POWERS UP WORLD’S LARGEST LITHIUM-ION BATTERY:  This new battery facility, called the Hornsdale Power Reserve, has smoothed out at least two major energy outages, responding even more quickly than the coal-fired backups that were supposed to provide emergency power. Created by Tesla, this battery recently kicked in just 0.14 seconds after one of Australia’s biggest plants, the Loy Yang facility in the neighboring state of Victoria, suffered a sudden, unexplained drop in output. This battery can power up to 30,000 homes for short periods, but is designed to smooth out power outages. Dec, 2017
• QUEENSLAND BANS SINGLE-USE PLASTIC BAGS FROM JULY, 2018: The state will also have a new 10-cent refund scheme for most beverage containers, in order to stop them from ending up in waterways and the sea. The container refund scheme is predicted to create new jobs and charities will be among those reaping the rewards. Sep, 2017
90% RENEWABLE ENERGY WILL POWER ALL HOMES BY END OF 2017: Renewables, which made up just 7% of national electricity output a decade ago, now is saving the power sector from carbon pollution equivalent to taking more than half of all cars in Australia off the road, according to Green Energy Markets. The biggest single source of renewable power remained hydro-electricity (40%), followed by wind (31%) and rooftop solar (18%), the index found. Less than 2% came from large solar farms, suggesting the best is yet to come from this arm of the renewables industry which has an array of large-scale projects underwayAug, 2017
• SEA COW BABY BOOM IN GREAT BARRIER REEF: Dugongs, a relative of the manatee, which is listed as vulnerable to extinction, experienced a boom in population after a resurgence of sea grass along the reef. Heavy rainfall and cyclones typically destroy sea grass, so there is much concern for the dugong’s future. May, 2017
AUSTRALIAN ENTREPRENEUR CREATES PHONE APP TO PROMOTE MORE SUSTAINABLE BEHAVIOR: Seb Berry has created a phone app that allows one to measure the small steps we individually take to live more sustainable lives. As consumers living in a world filled with many choices, this app allows one to record daily decisions and measure one’s progress over time. Feb, 2017, @MEP

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MAJORITY OF AUSTRIAN SUPERMARKETS HAVE STOPPED PROVIDING PLASTIC BAGS: Most of Austria’s shops and supermarkets have voluntarily stopped providing plastic bags to customers. One plastic bag takes one second to make, is used for about 20 minutes, and then takes 400 years to degrade naturally. Unfortunately environmentalists claim this is not enough, as this does not include plastic bags for fruits, vegetables and wrapping meat and fish. Jan, 2017

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• AZERBAIJAN BANS GMOs: No genetically modified organisms that are in tobacco, wine and food products can be imported or produced in this country. While debates on the danger of the genetically modified organisms are continuing around the world, this country has decided to protect its citizens from any potential hazards caused by GMOs. Dec, 2015

Bahamas-FlagBahamas        top
BAHAMAS PROVIDES $1 MILLION FOR PROJECT TO MONITOR AIR QUALITY: The E-Nose System Project provides 24-hour air quality monitoring of the Freeport Industrial Park, where companies have been known not to comply with environmental standards. This WHO study aims to protect neighborhoods in close proximity to the Industrial Park as well as to deal appropriately with companies that fall short of meeting the required air quality standards, such emitting hazardous chemicals at the expense of the health and safety of people. April, 2017

Bahrain-FlagBahrain        top
THIS PERSIAN GULF ISLAND COUNTRY LAUNCHES ENVIRONMENTAL STUDY: In an effort to restore depleted seagrass, Bahrain’s study is focused on the enhancement and replantation of seagrass in an effort to increase the biodiversity and stability in its country’s marine environment. Sep, 2016

Bangladesh-FlagBangladesh        top
BANGLADESH FIRST COUNTRY TO BAN PLASTIC BAGS: In 2002, with plastic bags littering its cities, blocking sewage lines and drainage, the Ministry of Environment and Forest, MOEF, banned plastic bags, with punishments for production, import and marketing, as well as selling and distribution. 2017

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BARBADOS CONTINUES ITS FOCUS ON RENEWABLE ENERGY: The Barbados government says it will continue with its climate change agenda including pushing the concept of renewable energy despite the new position taken by the United States. April, 2017

Belarus-FlagBelarus        top
BELARUS BECOMES GREENER WITH HELP FROM EU: Belarus has received numerous grants from the European Union to modernize its water-purification systems (€65m) and finance a new wind turbine farm and twenty smaller local green projects throughout Belarus (€12m). Dec, 2013

belgium-flagBelgium        top
BELGIAN SCIENTISTS TURN AIR POLLUTION INTO FUEL: In an effort to save the environment, Belgian scientists from the University of Antwerp and University of Leuven are developing a device that converts air pollution into hydrogen fuel. It relies on a process called ‘heterogeneous photocatalysis,’ which uses light and a special catalyst (typically a semiconductor) to trigger a chemical reaction. May, 2017
BELGIUM CONDEMNS POACHING FOR IVORY: Belgium joined other nations by crushing its ivory stockpile to send a message to the world that it no longer will tolerate the killing of elephants for ivory. Other benefits were that this event brought officials together to discuss other measures that need to be taken. April, 2014

belize-flagBelize        top
OFFSHORE OIL MORATORIUM TO PROTECT REEFS: The government of Belize halted all exploration for oil in its territorial waters from Dec. 29, 2017, becoming one of the first developing countries to turn away from oil in favor of protecting the ocean environment. This is the result of WWF campaign during which 450,000 Belizeans emailed the government about offshore drilling.  Jan, 2018
• BUSINESS OWNERS WANT TO INCREASE MANGROVE PROTECTION: Mangroves stop erosion and protect coastal towns of Belize from the devastation of hurricanes, and they also provide a sanctuary for fish. All of these factors add up to boosting tourism and strengthening the economy. This is an example of how business and environmental stewardship can be mutually beneficial. July, 2017
• BELIZE BANS OFFSHORE DRILLING: The Belizean Cabinet voted to ban offshore drilling along its barrier reef and its seven marine protected areas of the country. Dec, 2015
• 104 ACRES TO BE AN ECO-RESORT TO BE BUILT WITH FUNDS FROM LEONARDO DICAPRIO: The oscar-winning actor will build an eco-resort that will serve as a nursery for coral, indigenous plants and animals that will be monitored by scientists. April, 2015

benin-flagBenin        top
• BENIN’S FORESTS TO SERVE AS SUSTAINABLE FOOD SUPPLY: Benin has a cultural practice of protecting its sacred forests, while nutritional experts say that these forests can also provide a balanced diet such as the Baobab fruit, without disturbing the ecosystem. This is the first African country to enforce the conservation of its forests. July, 2015

bhutan-flagBhutan        top
BHUTAN IS ONE OF THE MOST ENVIRONMENT-FRIENDLY COUNTRY IN THE WORLD: Bhutan is actually carbon-negative. Their total pollution is 2.2m tons of carbon dioxide, which is completely absorbed by their forests that can absorb over three times that amount. They are planning to utilize their numerous fast moving rivers for hydropower, capable of creating enough renewable energy for a city the size of New York. Please watch this inspirational TED Talk of the Bhutan Prime Minister. Feb, 2016
BHUTAN GOVERNMENT HAS BEGUN SUSTAINABILITY-BASED EDUCATION PROGRAMS IN SCHOOLS: The Green Schools for Green Bhutan program aims to integrate with its existing Gross National Happiness model, which is based on four pillars: equitable social development, cultural preservation, conservation of the environment, and promotion of good governance. Jan. 2013

bolivia-flagBolivia        top
CHEFS COME TO BOLIVIA TO COOK WITH SUSTAINABLE INGREDIENTS FROM RAINFOREST: In Bolivia’s Madidi National Park, officials met with chefs that served plates with ingredients from the rainforest, such as camu camu (a fruit with 30 times the vitamin C of an orange) and majo (a fruit that can serve as an alternative to milk). The hope is to show locals the commercial potential of the rainforest while emphasizing sustainability. Aug, 2016

bosnia-flagBosnia and Herzegovina        top
FREE ENVIRONMENTAL LEGAL ADVICE: Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Arhaus Center provides free legal advice for citizens focused on communicating their environmental concerns with the government. Jan, 2016

botswana-flagBotswana        top
A GRASSROOTS GREEN FUND IS LAUNCHED: With severe desertification facing this nation, the government has established a $1M National Environmental Fund (NEF) which aims to shore up community-based projects related to environmental protection, climate change mitigation and adaption, waste management and pollution control. Nov, 2016
• BOTSWANA HAS SEVERE PENALTIES FOR POACHING ON PROTECTED LAND: Various laws in Botswana such as the Wildlife Conservation and National Parks Act of 1992 restricts any hunting on protected land and strictly controls trades of trophies, meats and eggs. This law protects animals and the lands that contain the majority of endangered animals in the country. Library of Congress

flag_of_brazilBrazil        top
HOMEBUILDER TO OFFER RENAULT ELECTRIC CARS IN BUILDINGS: Latin America’s largest homebuilder, MRV Engenharia e Participacoes SA, is partnering with the Brazilian unit of French automaker Renault SA to offer electric car sharing in its buildings. Co-Chief Executive Officer Rafael Menin said that the pilot program was part of the Brazilian homebuilder’s energy efficiency initiatives. The homebuilder aims to offer solar energy panels included in all of its new housing by 2022. Nov, 2018
• VILLAGERS TURN PLASTIC POLLUTION INTO PROFIT: After plastic waste contributed to deadly floods in Recife, one neighborhood took action. Now people can earn a living by cleaning up the river in a scheme being imitated around the world, basically by collecting and taking bottles to a recycling store at 50 bottles/40 pence.  April, 2018
73 MILLION TREES TO BE PLANTED IN FIVE YEARS: Conservation International is planning to restore nearly 70,000 acres (30,000 hectares) of land, which is the equivalent of about 30,000 soccer fields. The plan will help Brazil move closer to its Paris Agreement goal of reforesting 12 million hectacres by 2030. Already one million trees have been planted. Nov, 2017
• AMAZON DEFORESTATION DROPS BY 16%: Deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon has continued to be a major problem, but efforts to reduce this trend continue to produce positive results. 2004 was the worst year, but since then, deforestation has declined by a factor of four. Oct, 2017
• PRESIDENT EXPANDS CONSERVED LANDS BY 282,000 HECTARES: Brazilian President Temer expanded three national parks and created a new one, the equivalent of over a 1000 square miles. Although local conservationists applauded this move, other Amazon parks are now at risk of being reduced in size so as to appease the agribusiness lobby. June, 2017
• BRAZILIAN CITY CURITIBA TRANSFORMS ABANDONED URBAN SPACES INTO FARMS: In order to reduce carbon emissions, the city plants legumes to bind carbon into the soil and bans the use of chemical nitrogen fertilizers. Jan, 2016
• LARGE PORTION OF AMAZON NOW PROTECTED: A 150 million acre portion of the Amazon, the size of the state of California, is now a combination of sustainable-use and strict protected areas. ARPA (Amazon Region Protected Areas) is considered one of the biggest conservation projects in the world and the World Wildlife Fund, WWF, was instrumental in facilitating this accomplishment. May, 2014, @MEP

brunei-flagBrunei        top
• COMMITTED TO GREEN ECONOMY: Brunei’s government is launching a green building initiative, an environmental impact assessment and research to collect statistical data for the public to help them make informed decisions, all to create a greener economy with energy saving measures. Aug, 2015

bulgaria-flagBulgaria        top
• WORLD BANK HELPS BULGARIA PROTECT ITS NATURE: World Bank will help Bulgaria protect and better manage its natural assets, such as agriculture, forestry, transport,  infrastructure, and water, with their findings assisting in creating the Bulgaria Climate Change National Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan. Sep, 2016

burkinafaso-flagBurkina Faso        top
• THIS WEST AFRICAN COUNTRY HAS RECEIVED MONETARY SUPPORT TO MONITOR FOREST SUSTAINABILITY: The Forest Investment Program has given $101,000 to Burkina Faso to not only monitor its forests, but to help conserve them from gold mining that has been destroying the country’s forests. April, 2015, Oct, 2013, Sep, 2011

burundi-flagBurundi        top
BURUNDI HELPING ITS MOST VULNERABLE: 31,000 households of farmers threatened by draught and plant disease caused by climate change are being helped by the Food and Agriculture Organisation, FAO, which has started distributing agricultural inputs. These inputs include bean and vegetable seeds, chemical fertilizers, sweet potato cuttings and, in some cases, hoes for the 2017 second growing season.. Feb, 2017

Flag Cape VerdeCabo Verde        top
CABO VERDE RECEIVES $4.6 MILLION FROM THE GLOBAL ENVIRONMENT FACILITY TO PROTECT AND CONSERVE BIODIVERSITY IN THE ISLANDS: This money will go to four out of the nine inhabited islands: Sal, Boavista, Santiago and Maio to help conserve the beautiful but endangered marine and land areas that contain a diverse fauna and flora. Aug, 2016

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LARGE SCALE ILLEGAL LOGGING STOPPED IN CAMBODIA: The Cambodian prime minister banned all timber exports to Vietnam and ordered the closing of border crossings to prevent timber smuggling. Aug, 2016, @MEP

CameroonFlagCameroon        top
UNIVERSITY TRAINS LEADERS IN SUSTAINABILITY: In this coastal town, Catholic University Institute of Buea, CUIB, is now focused on training its students to be leaders of sustainability in Cameroon. Most climate change issues here, such as the variability of rainfall, are the result of human activities of other nations. However, Cameroon is still focused on adjusting its practices, such as protecting its forests, to lessen the effects on its own country. Jan, 2014

Flag CanadaCanada        top
HARMFUL ‘SINGLE-USE PLASTICS’ TO BE BANNED BY 2021: Prime Minister Trudeau said that while an exact list of items that will be covered by the ban has not been determined, it will be “grounded in science.” A government statement said that it could include such items as bags, straws, plates, cutlery and stir sticks. June, 2019
WITH CCL’S HELP, CANADA PROGRESSES TOWARD A NATIONAL CARBON PRICE: On January 1, 2019, the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act will take effect across Canada. The legislation requires provinces to either create their own carbon pricing schemes or accept a federal price of $10 Canadian dollars per metric ton of CO2. The fee will reach $50 per metric ton by 2022 and will be revenue-neutral. As it is written, the policy more closely resembles Citizens’ Climate Lobby (CCL)’s proposed Carbon Fee & Dividend than any policy in the world. Oct, 2018
CANADA AND USA TO PROTECT NEARLY ALL OF AMERICA’S ARTIC OCEAN: Working with the United States, Canada Prime Minister Trudeau has committed to a five-year moratorium of the Artic Ocean (North of Canada) from the risk of drilling.  This will be reviewed/renewed every five years based on scientific assessment. Dec, 2016
RAINFOREST SAVED: Canada has banned logging across 85% of the rainforest in western Canada, supported by loggers, environmentalists, and local aboriginal tribes. Feb, 2016, @MEP

FlagCentralAfricanRepublicCentral African Republic        top
CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC RECEIVES $1 MILLION DOLLARS TO HELP PROTECT ITS FORESTS: In an effort to sustain the country’s forests, the UN and the World Bank has given funds to help reduce deforestation and uncontrolled logging, despite the fragile war-torn circumstances. Oct, 2016

FlagChadChad        top
CHAD’S RIVER CLEANED: The Lake Chad Basin Commission is committed to preserving the resources of the Hadejia River, while protecting the environment and improving the well-being of people around Lake Chad. It recently completed the 42-kilometer dredging of the river, to improve flow of water and control flooding. As well, the Commission  is focused  on tree planting and the establishment of fish ponds. April, 2017

FlagChileChile        top
ELECTRIC VEHICLE ROLLOUT: Energy minister Susana Jiménez told Reuters the government wanted electric vehicles to account for 40 percent of Chile’s private fleet and 100 percent of public transportation on the roads by 2050. Chile offers electric vehicles exemptions from environmental tax and traffic restrictions, as well as subsidies and fast-track licensing to taxi drivers who switch to more energy efficient cars. Dec, 2018
• 10 MILLION ACRES ADDED TO NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM: Five new national parks will be created in Chile, increasing the protected area by 38.5%. Tompkins Conservation is a US-based foundation aimed at preventing biodiversity loss and added 1 million acres to the deal — it was founded by Kristine and Doug Tompkins, business leaders of clothing brands The North Face, Esprit, and Patagonia. Jan, 2018
• ESTABLISHES THREE HUGE MARINE PROTECTED AREAS, ONE AT EASTER ISLAND: In Chile announced a 740,000-square-kilometer (285,700-square-mile) marine reserve around its remote Easter Island. The Rapa Nui Rahui Marine Protected Area region is home to over 140 marine species found nowhere else on Earth, and the park will not allow industrial fishing, mining and other extractive activities. Chile also announced the creation of two more marine reserves. At 117,000 square kilometers (45,170 square miles), one of the new reserves covers the ocean off Diego Ramírez Islands, off South America’s Cape Horn, while the second protected area, at 484,000 square kilometers (186,870 square miles), lies around the Juan Fernández Islands in the southern Pacific. Oct, 2017, Oct, 2017, 2017
• FIRST AMERICAN COUNTRY TO BAN PLASTIC BAGS IN COASTAL CITIES: President Michelle Bachelet announced that this bill will be passed within 12 months, ” It will allow citizens to contribute in terms of ocean protection.” Another 60 Chilean cities have already taken measures of this nature. Sep, 2017
• CHILE PLANS TO BE 60% CLEAN ENERGY BY 2035: With its dry air, the Atacama Desert is one of the most efficient places in the world to collect solar energy. The 500k solar panel Finis Terrae solar plant can generate 160-megawatts, enough for 200k homes. To create clean energy during the night hours, the country is building a $1.4B 700-foot tall solar thermal plant, surrounded by 10,000 giant rotating mirrors, which focus the sun’s rays on 1,000-degree molten salt in the tower by day and in turn drive steam turbines to make electricity by night. It’s essentially a giant, rechargeable battery. March, 2017, @MEP
• BIGGEST PRIVATE LAND DONATION IN HISTORY MADE BY FORMER PATAGONIA CEO TO CHILEAN GOVERNMENT INCREASES NATIONAL PARKS BY 10 MILLION ACRES: Philanthropist Kristine Tompkins donated one million acres, matched by nine million acres by the government, to enlarge two national parks, Hornopirén and Corcovado. March, 2017
CHILE CREATES LARGEST MARINE PARK IN THE SOUTHEAST PACIFIC: With its 300,035 square kilometers, Nazca-Desventuradas Marine Park now protects 12% of Chile’s marine surface territory. Sep, 2016

Flag ChinaChina        top
TAIWAN TO BAN PLASTIC BAGS, STRAWS, AND UTENSILS:  This island nation will ban all of these items over the next decade, which will be the one of the farthest-reaching bans on plastic in the world. Feb, 2018
• SOLDIERS TO PLANT 32,400 SQUARE MILES OF TREES: 60,000 Chinese soldiers have been assigned the task of planting trees on land the size of Ireland, increasing the country’s forest coverage from 21% to 23% by 2020. Most of this land surrounds Beijing and the new trees will help to absorb the city’s pollution. Feb, 2018
• BAN OF PETROL AND DIESEL CARS ‘IN THE NEAR FUTURE’: China, the world’s biggest vehicle market, is considering a ban on the production and sale of fossil fuel cars in a major boost to the production of electric vehicles as Beijing seeks to ease pollution. Sep, 2017
• MILLIONS OF RENTAL BIKES PLACED IN CHINA AND MULTIPLE COUNTRIES : Two companies, Ofo and Mobike, have introduced a phone app that allows you to rent a bike for cheap ($0.80 for three months in China), and in other countries around the world, including Japan, US, Britain, Singapore, Kazakhstan, and Thailand. These non-docking bicycles can be placed and left anywhere, both allowing for flexibility and ease of use. Aug, 2017, @MEP
• CHINA IS BUILDING A FOREST CITY: The Liuzhou Forest City in southern China is the first ever city of its kind as it will produce 900 tonnes of oxygen and help absorb almost 10,000 tons of carbon dioxide and 57 tonnes of pollutants every year. The plan is plant 40,000 trees and 1 million plants on its streets, balconies, and roofs. Other environmentally friendly designs are also included. June, 2017
• CHINA HELPS AIR QUALITY BY CANCELING 104 NEW COAL PLANTS: These canceled projects amount to a whopping 120 gigawatts of capacity (equivalent to 1/3 of entire US coal fleet). To combat loss of jobs, the government plans to set aside $15.3 billion for areas ravaged by unemployment. Jan, 2017
• SHARK FINS BANNED BY AIR CHINA: Air China airlines has banned shark fin cargo, which is a large step toward stopping China’s appetite for this endangered species. Over 73 million sharks are killed each year, most are for this Chinese soup. Air China joins 35 other airlines and 17 global container shipping lines, including Chinese state-owned shipping giant China Cosco Shipping, in this ban. Jan, 2017
IVORY TRADE TO END IN 2017: China has joined the other largest importer of ivory, USA, to end all ivory commerce. This will save the lives of 20,000 African elephants each year going forward. Dec, 2016

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NATIONAL PARK EXPANDS TO LIMIT DEFORESTATION: President Juan Manuel Santos has increased the country’s largest national park, Chiribiquete, by 1.5 million hectares, as a way to reduce destruction of its country’s forests. The cleared lands are typically used for agriculture. March, 2018
• COMPANY MAKES RECYCLED PLASTIC BUILDING BLOCKS FOR HOMES: Conceptos Plásticos works with local communities to source plastic and rubber and train locals on the building process. With the building blocks, locals can build their own houses, emergency shelters, community halls, and classrooms. A home for one family will take four people five days to construct with the recycled building blocks – and there’s no construction experience necessary. The blocks fit together like LEGOs. June, 2017
• PRESIDENT DOUBLES AREA OF NATIONAL PARKS AND RECEIVES AWARD: President Juan Santos has more than doubled the number of square miles under national environmental protection — from 50.2 million square miles in 2010 to 109.6 million square miles today, including a doubling of Chiribiquete National Park in southern Colombia, one of the world’s most biodiverse places. He was recently honored by the National Geographic Society for his focus on the environment.  July, 2017, @MEP
• COLOMBIA PROPOSES TO PROTECT THE LARGEST AREA IN THE WORLD: Colombia is planning to protect a 333.6 million acre corridor, to be called the “Triple A,” because it will go from the Andes to the Amazon to the Atlantic. Brazil and Venezuela will also need to agree to this proposal. March, 2015

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CLIMATE CHANGE HEAVILY AFFECTS COMOROS: This African island nation hopes to get funding from the UN after the Paris Climate talks to obtain weather station units to help warn its people of severe weather changes that stem from climate change. Dec, 2015

CongoFlagCongo        top
BMW JOINS PROJECT TO IMPROVE CONDITIONS FOR COBALT MINING IN CONGO: German carmaker BMW is exploring ways to improve working conditions for mining cobalt in Congo through a pilot project also supported by chemicals giant BASF, battery maker Samsung SDI and a development agency. Currently, companies are facing challenges in the areas of environment, health and safety, and human rights when cobalt is extracted through so-called artisanal mining. Nov, 2018
• CONGO HAS WORLD’S LARGEST CARBON-ABSORBING TROPICAL PEATLAND: Healthy peatlands remove carbon from the air. This 50,000 square kilometer swamp forest and peatland stores about 20 years of the fossil fuel emissions of the USA (a third of the world’s emissions) and it is thus imperative that it remain untouched. In order to protect it, the Congolese government is trying to make it a part of the protected Lac Télé community reserve. Jan, 2017

Flag Cook IslandsCook Islands        top
COOK ISLANDS PARTNER WITH FRENCH POLYNESIA TO CREATE ADJACENT SHARK SANCTUARIES THAT SPAN OVER 2.5 MILLION SQUARE MILES: The Cook Islands has designated its own shark sanctuary that is roughly the size of Mexico, 756,000 miles. Dec, 2012

costaricastateflagimageCosta Rica        top
 COSTA RICA USES ONLY RENEWABLE ENERGY FOR 75 DAYS in 2015 – A WORLD RECORD: Thanks to a heavy rainfall this year, its hydropower plants alone were able to generate enough electricity for the entire country. This country also has geothermal, solar, and wind energy resources available for its country’s use. March, 2015, @MEP

cotedivoireflagCote D’Ivoire        top
• COTE D’IVOIRE SEEKS TO CONSERVE ITS ENVIRONMENT BY STOPPING ILLEGAL COCOA GROWERS: 99% of the Mont Peko National Park has been destroyed by illegal cocoa farmers, with cocoa from this country producing nearly 40% of the world supply. But, the government has come up with solutions to rehabilitate this park, by collaborating with the farmers and implementing new production techniques like grafting and agroforestry. Oct, 2015

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 SOAP RECYCLING PLANT EMPLOYS PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES: A plant which recycles partially used hotel soap in Solin, Croatia, employs people with disabilities and eliminates this waste produced by hotels. This project is a win-win for sustainability and reducing unemployment in innovative ways. March, 2016

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CUBA DRASTICALLY REFORMS FISHING LAWS TO PROTECT CORAL REEF, SHARKS AND RAYS: This country has introduced sweeping reforms of its fishing laws in a move seen as smoothing the way for possible collaboration with the US on protecting their shared ocean. The move is the first time the text of an environmental law in Cuba specifies the need for scientific research, which experts say will mean greater reliance on state-of-the-art US technology. Aug, 2019, @MEP
 USA’S WARMING RELATIONS TOWARDS CUBA SPURS ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTIONS: United States and Cuba are now working together to create laws and begin scientific studies in order to protect surrounding coral reefs and enforce sustainable agricultural practices, all in anticipation of a major influx of tourists to the island. March, 2016

cyprus-flagCyprus        top
 CYPRUS WORKS WITH ISRAEL AND GREECE TO PROTECT ENVIRONMENT: In an agreement, the three governments took on plans to combat pollution of the Mediterranean and manage water resources together. Dec, 2016

czechrepublic-flagCzech Republic        top
 CZECH REPUBLIC FOCUSED ON AIR QUALITY: The Environment Ministry is focused on bettering its air quality through designating ‘low emission zones’ for cars by reducing traffic and replacing household boilers. Nov, 2014

CongoFlagDemocratic Republic of Congo        top
NONPROFIT IN THE CONGO HAS BEEN PROTECTING THE ELUSIVE OKAPI FOR 30 YEARS: The “zebra-like” Okapi is only found in the forests of the Congo and the nonprofit the Okapi Conservation Project makes sure that these incredibly rare animals are protected from poaching and habitat loss. June, 2017
• PARK RANGERS PROTECT GORILLAS AT ALL COSTS: Kahuzi-Biega Park is home to the critically endangered Grauer’s gorillas. With the help of the WWF, Park rangers are focused on preserving these mountainous forests and promoting tourism, realizing these magnificent animals could actually be the key to peace and economic development. Nov, 2016

Flag_of_Denmark.svgDenmark        top
DENMARK WILL BAN PETROL/DIESEL CARS BY 2030 AND HYBRID BY 2035: Joining an international effort to reduce air pollution and combat climate change, Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen is determined to have its country at the forefront of saving the planet. “It is a big ambition that will be hard to achieve. But that’s exactly why we need to try,” Oct, 2018
• DANISH SAMSO ISLAND IS A MODEL FOR RENEWABLE ENERGY: Samso’s residents have already found ways to reduce their greenhouse gas output to effectively zero by using wind turbines, solar energy, and using waste from crops to power their homes. April, 2016
• DENMARK CUTS FOOD WASTE BY 25% IN LAST FIVE YEARS: Denmark’s restaurants and supermarkets sell their leftover food via apps and mark down prices for food when past its expiration date. Across Europe, 100m tonnes of food a year ends up in landfills. As the food decomposes, it produces an estimated 227 tonnes of CO2 equivalent gases – roughly as much as the total fossil-fuel emissions of SpainJan, 2017
WATER TREATMENT PLANTS CREATE ENERGY: Presently, a typical European municipality uses 30-40% of its total electricity consumption on water treatment. The new Aarhus wastewater plant actually produces 90% more energy than it uses, creating an energy surplus. This technology can be used anywhere. May, 2016
HEATING – NO MORE FOSSIL FUEL BOILERS IN BUILDINGS: As of 2013, Denmark has banned the installation of new fossil fuel boilers in new buildings, and aims to replace coal with  boimass as a renewable energy source.  The country hopes to eliminate all fossil fuel use in electricity and heat by 2035. March, 2015
RENEWABLE ENERGY: As one of the world’s leaders in sustainability, Denmark’s wind farms were able for one day to generate 140% of its electricity needs, allowing it to export power to its neighboring countries. This indicates that renewable energy is clearly feasible. July, 2015

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DJIBOUTI PARTNERS WITH YALE UNIV TO STUDY CHANGE: For the first time, Djibouti has partnered with the Yale Climate & Energy Institute to study the effects of climate change in East Africa. Mar, 2015

Dominica-FlagrDominica        top
DOMINICAN GOVERNMENT BECOMES STRICTER REGARDING ENVIRONMENTAL OFFENDERS: To offset the continuing problem of littering, the government is planning to impose new laws that will ban styrofoam and plastic bags and prosecute those who don’t throw away trash in the proper bins. Dec, 2015

dominicanrepublicflagDominican Republic        top
RADIOACTIVE WASTE SAFEGUARDED: The government has prioritized safe and secure treatment of all radioactive waste by creating a storage facility outside its capitol. Radioactive material is used for medical treatments, mining, agriculture and construction. The government’s first option is to give radioactive sources back to those who provided them. But some sources cannot be repatriated. The country has historical sources and donated sources, for example, that can not be returned to their original owners. 2017

Flag EcuadorEcuador        top
GALAPAGOS ISLANDS PROTECTED: Ecuador protects 95% of these islands from any human contact, including an enormous amount of birds, iguanas, sea lions, coral reefs, and a thriving marine life. The WWF plays a large part in helping to protect this unique habitat. June, 2010, @MEP

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EGYPT CUTS USE OF FOSSIL FUEL: By 2030, Egypt plans to cut fossil fuel use from 95% to 50% and increase its use of renewable energy to 30%. Cement plants, a major consumer of coal, will also need to abide by a strict environmental assessment plan, which urges them not to exceed certain CO2 emissions by using Carbon Credit Cards, or to do planting projects or renewable energy expansion as compensation. April, 2016

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GOVERNMENT BANS ALL MINING: After winning a World Bank arbitrated dispute with a Canadian gold mining company over a controversial contract, the government has taken the historic step to ban all mining. Despite the economic advantages of mining, this country has determined that more is at stake. “The environment belongs to all of us,” claimed lawmaker Johnny Wright Sol. April, 2017, @MEP

equatorialguinea-flagEquatorial Guinea        top
PROTECTING EQUATORIAL GUINEA’S FORESTS: For the first time ever, Equatorial Guinea joined the Global Environment Facility Project to conserve its forests by addressing illegal logging. April, 2012

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ERITREA FOCUSES ON ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION: This government, seeing the degradation of its lands, is now focused on the environment, including creating 1,521 hectares of hillside terracing, 411,000 m3 check dams, 108,000 micro-basins; and (re) planted approximately 151.5 million seedlings. Jan, 2014

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ESTONIA BANS FREE HANDOUTS OF PLASTIC BAGS: Estonian stores are no longer allowed to provide plastic bags for free and must provide customers alternatives to plastic bags such as mesh bags. Dec, 2016

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350 MILLION TREES PLANTED IN ONE DAY: To tackle the effects of deforestation, Ethiopia plans to plants 4 billion trees this summer by encouraging every citizen to plant at least 40 seedlings. Public offices have reportedly been shut down in order for civil servants to take part. July, 2019, @MEP
ETHIOPIA’S FIRST BOTANICAL GARDEN: This botanical garden serves as a conservation site for 780 out of the estimated 6,500 endemic plant species. The garden’s main focus is to preserve plants that have medicinal, economical and cultural value. June, 2017
GE LOOKS TO DEVELOP RENEWABLE ENERGY SKILLS: General Electric (GE) and the Addis Ababa Institute of Technology (AAiT) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to create a renewables learning hub for undergraduates and a research incubator for graduates. May, 2017
• ETHIOPIA IS THE FIRST COUNTRY IN SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA TO HAVE A METRO SYSTEM: The Addis Ababa LRT Project has improved the city’s public transport system and created more than 6,000 jobs. The cumulative benefit potential of the LRT system is forecasted at 1.8 million tons of CO2 emissions by 2030. Jan, 2016, Oct, 2015
• ETHIOPIAN GOVERNMENT IMPLEMENTING GREEN PRACTICES: Ethiopia is now focused on the conservation of its environment by educating farmers to reforest and rehabilitate their land. Since then, the wild animal population has increased, which has in turn attracted more tourists. Sep, 2016

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BAN ON SALE OF PETROL AND DIESEL CARS FROM 2040 OR EARLIER: Spain plans to propose a ban on sales of petrol, diesel and hybrid cars from 2040. Britain and France have already pledged to ban petrol and diesel cars from 2040, which will mean big changes for the global car industry and put a squeeze on oil producers’ profits. Under the current climate change plan, Madrid aims to cut greenhouse gas emissions to at least 20 percent below 1990 levels by 2030. Some British politicians have said London should bring the ban forward to 2032, a more ambitious deadline already adopted by Scotland, while Denmark wants to make the move by 2030. The European Union as a whole aims to reduce emissions by at least 40 percent by 2030. Nov, 2018
EU TO LAY CABLE BETWEEN NORWAY AND UK: 450km long, this cable will allow Norway to export its excess hydroelectric power and UK to export its excess wind energy back to Norway. This and other cables are now being created in EU to create an international power grid that allows for the sharing of renewable energy sources, whose intermittent timing requires planning between countries. March, 2017
• ELECTRIC VEHICLES SPREADING RAPIDLY IN EU: Across the UK and Europe, the number of small businesses embracing the use of electric vehicles (EVs) and green transport innovation is rapidly increasing. Diesel cars will be banned from entering the center of many cities in the next ten years, including Madrid, Paris and Athens, while countries like Holland are seeking to exploit vehicle-to-grid technology, transferring excess car battery energy to the grid to provide power for businesses and homes. June, 2017
• EU ENERGY COMPANIES AGREE TO STOP BUILDING COAL PLANTS: Energy companies in nearly every European country, less two, have pledged to not build new coal-fired power plants by 2020. April, 2017

micronesiaflagFederated States of Micronesia        top
• MICRONESIA FOCUSED ON MARINE PRESERVATION: Micronesia has joined the Micronesia Challenge that includes over 2000 Pacific islands with sustainable goals that include: protecting locations with the most biodiversity, training local conservation and community organizations, developing sound governmental sustainable policies, identifying and addressing invasive species and destructive fishing practices. The Nature Conservancy has pledged $3 million to help reach these goals. The hope is conserve at least 30% of near-shore marine resources and 20% of terrestrial resources by 2020.

fiji-flagFiji        top
FIJI AIRWAYS COMMITTED TO CONSERVING THE ENVIRONMENT: For every take off by Fiji Airways, a new tree will be planted in Fiji in protected areas. This “Every Take Off, One Tree” initiative will plant approximately 2000 trees per year. March, 2017

finland-flagFinland        top
FINLAND TO BE 100% CARBON-FREE BY 2035: The Social Democratic party leader, Antti Rinne, who formed the five-party alliance of centrist, leftist and Green parties after narrowly beating the nationalist Finns party in an election in April, said it was time to “invest in the future” after years of austerity. June, 2019
LI HOPES TO BE FIRST CARBON-FREE TOWN, 80% BY 2020: Since 2012 they’ve invested heavily in geothermal, solar and wind energy projects that have paid off: they now generate a profit of half a million euros a year. They believe the key to successful climate action is education from a very young age. April, 2019
FINLAND TO BECOME FIRST COUNTRY TO BAN COAL POWER: It would be a significant step forward in countries prohibiting the types of energy production that we know directly contribute to putting harmful gasses into the atmosphere. While coal currently only provides around 8% of the country’s energy needs the move will have a significant impact on Finland’s own energy companies. Nov, 2016, @MEP
• FINLAND SATISFIED WITH NEW BIOMASS SUSTAINABILITY CRITERIA: Finland has figured out how to use its forest’s biomass (bio-fuels) as an energy source while producing zero-emissions. Dec. 2016

Flag_of_France.svgFrance        top
2050 CARBON-NEUTRAL TARGET IN NEW LAW: French lawmakers voted into law the first article in a climate and energy package that sets goals for France to cut its greenhouse gas emissions and go carbon-neutral by 2050 in line with the 2015 Paris climate agreement. June, 2019
TECH FIRM DEVELOPS TINY TRACKER TO HELP FIGHT RHINO POACHING: Using sensors embedded in the rhino horn that provide this animal’s exact location, French tech company Sigfox has developed a bite-size tracker that can help conservationists monitor and protect the endangered species. With the dramatic decline of animal species in the past century mostly due to poaching and urban expansion, wildlife organizations have turned to technology to help safeguard species being pushed towards extinction. The global number of rhinos dwindled to about 20,000 a decade ago due to relentless poaching, though they have rebounded to about 29,000 thanks to conservation efforts. Dec, 2018
FRANCE SETS OUT PLANS TO TACKLE DEFORESTATION: France has proposed 17 measures aimed at putting a halt by 2030 to deforestation caused by imports of non-sustainable forest or agricultural products. They plan to curb imports of products such as palm oil, soy, and beef which it said contributes to the problem of forest areas disappearing. These measures include financial aid to encourage developing countries to respect non-deforestation criteria and the launch of a “zero deforestation” label for consumers Nov, 2018
• FRANCE’S ENGIE AND CASINO TARGET LARGE-SCALE ROOFTOP SOLAR: These companies will invest some 100 million euros ($115 million) a year to build solar panels on the rooftops of supermarkets, hotels and hospitals in France. This amounts to 100 megawatts (MW) of rooftop solar capacity per year, at a rhythm of about one new installation per day. Oct, 2018
• FRANCE PLANS TO BAN ALL PETROL AND DIESEL CARS BY 2040: France will be phasing out combustion engines in favor of low-carbon vehicles powered by electricity or hydrogen. More impressively, France intends to be carbon neutral (zero carbon pollution) by 2050. July, 2017
• PLASTIC BAN: France becomes the first country to ban plastic plates, cups, and utensils, to go into effect in 2020. Sep, 2016, @MEP
GREEN ROOFS FOR ALL COMMERCIAL BUILDINGS: A new law recently passed in France mandates that all new buildings that are built in commercial zones in France must be partially covered in either plants or solar panels. April, 2015

FrenchPolynesiaFlagFrench Polynesia        top
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, BERKELEY STUDY TO PROVIDE BASELINE DATA ON CLIMATE CHANGE IN FRENCH POLYNESIA: This study will provide awareness of climate change in the region as well as propose adaptive responses to major climate threats. July, 2010

gabon-flagGabon   top
GABON TO PROTECT 20 NEW MARINE AREAS: President Ali Bongo Ondimba announced to the UN Ocean Conference that the government of Gabon has created a network of marine protected areas covering some 53,000 square kilometers (20,463 square miles) of ocean, an area larger than Costa Rica. June, 2017
• GABON RANKS HIGH IN ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY IN AFRICA: Gabon is ranked 12th in environmental sustainability, only outranked by Scandinavian and South American countries. This is supported by its unspoiled lands, intact biodiversity, and water resources of high quality. Feb, 2017

gambia-flagGambia   top
GAMBIA PROMOTES SUSTAINABLE TOURISM: In an effort to protect the environment while attracting tourists, EcoGambia strives to promote ecotourism by creating employment opportunities for youth and educating locals on sustainability while showing tourists Gambia’s natural landscapes in an eco-friendly way. 2016

georgia-flagGeorgia   top
GEORGIA CREATES NEW 2017 ENVIRONMENTAL LAWS: The government is taking genuine steps to significantly reduce the damage caused by plastic bottles and other pollutants on the environment. Presently, recyclable plastics are not separated from trash, and the new laws will require plastic companies to comply with much stricter codes of conduct, all to reduce pollution from the business sector down to individual households.. Dec, 2015

germany-flagGermany   top
GERMAN LAWMAKERS VOTE TO BAN PETROL AND DIESEL CARS BY 2030: In an effort to meet emissions targets outlined in the Paris agreement, no new combustion engine cars will be allowed on roads after 2030. Oct, 2016
• GERMANY LEADS RENEWABLE ENERGY REVOLUTION OR ENERGIEWENDE: 27% of its energy comes from renewable sources and Chancellor Angela Merkel has vowed that the country will shut off all its nuclear power plant reactors by 2022. Nov. 2015
GOVERNMENT USES ENERGY TAX TO BECOME ONE OF THE GREENEST COUNTRIES: Germany taxes fossil fuels much more than renewable energy, which has both reduced the total amount oil and gas its country has consumed and motivates companies and individuals to choose renewables going forward. They have also devised creative incentive programs for building green buildings, protecting the environment, and have created extensive bicycle trails as a green alternative mode of transportation. Sep, 2011, June, 2015

ghanaflagGhana   top
• GHANA’S COLLEGE FOCUSED ON CLIMATE CHANGE:  The College of Science and Technology, CCST, is leading the effort to deal with the threat of climate change by introducing a two-year program in climate change and natural resources management targeted towards students who want to preserve the forests of Ghana. March, 2017

flag-greeceGreece   top
LOGGERHEAD TURTLE NEXTING SITE FINALLY GETS PROTECTION: After years of inaction, which led to condemnation by the European Court of Justice for failure to fulfill obligations, Greece has finally issued a Presidential Decree to protect the Kyparissia Bay. This area is the second most important nesting site of the loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta) in the Mediterranean and a critically endangered sand dune system in Greece. These areas are now protected by a concrete institutional and legal framework. Nov, 2018
• NEW URBAN DEVELOPMENT WILL HELP ENVIRONMENT: The Elliniko Project in Athens aims to be the largest renewal project in Greece by upgrading its airport, creating a one km beach and it will also improve the area’s micro climate through the planting of new trees and creation of bodies of water. Aug, 2016

grenada-flagGrenada   top
GRENADIAN RESORT SERVES AS AN ECO-HAVEN: Blue Horizons Garden Resort in Grenada has been committed to sustainable practices since 2003. As an environmentally focused leader in the Caribbean Islands, this resort protects 27 indigenous species of birds on its lands. Dec, 2016

guatemalaflagGuatemala   top
• COMMUNITIES LEAD THE WAY IN RAINFOREST CONSERVATION: In the Maya Biosphere Reserve, which includes one-fifth of Guatemala, and is the most important tropical forest area north of the Amazon, it turns out that the best ways to protect the rainforest is to hand its management over to communities whose livelihoods depend on it. Local workers, like Marta Álvarez, check the quality of the palm fronds, which are carefully harvested from trees and used for floral arrangements abroad. This is in contrast to contractors, who have less interest in protecting this natural reserve. June, 2016

guineaflagGuinea   top
GUINEA RECEIVES ELECTRICITY FROM RENEWABLE RESOURCES: Over 14 villages in the northeast of Guinea will receive electricity from renewable resources, provided by the Environment and Energy Management Agency (ADEME). The overall objective in much of Africa is to unleash an “Off-Grid Energy Revolution”, to provide up to 75 million households and businesses not covered by the power grid with modern, clean and affordable electricity using decentralised solar and hydro technologies. April, 2017, April, 2017

guineabissauflagGuinea Bissau        top
CONSERVING GUINEA BISSAU’S BIODIVERSITY: In collaboration with the World Bank, Guinea Bissau established in 2005 the Institute for Biodiversity and Protected Areas, which now has numerous accomplishments, including creating five national parks and one community reserve. Nov, 2015

guyana flagGuyana   top
DEFORESTATION RATE HITS 7-YEAR LOW: According to data released by the Guyana Forestry Commission (GFC), the small South American nation’a deforestation rate in 2017 was 0.048%. Government official say that their new deforestation estimates are the lowest since assessments started back in 1990. Environmental advocates say the reduction in timber concession areas has reduced road building by loggers that once facilitated opportunistic mining. Oct, 2018
• GUYUNA PLEDGES TO PROTECT JAGUARS AND ITS RAIN FORESTS WITH AN $8.5 MILLION FUND: This country pledges to protect it jaguars by using cameras and doing scientific research to promote the longtime conservation of jaguars in its country. For the first time, it will also focus on the conservation of its rain forests. July 2012, Jan 2013

haiti-flagHaiti        top
HAITI PROTECTS MARINE AREAS, BUT UN URGES HAITI TO DO MORE: Although Haiti has established protected marine areas to the south and north of its island, Food and Agriculture Organisation, FAO, studies indicate that deforestation is a major concern. One contributing factor is the felling of trees for charcoal production, which in 2012 was used in 92% of Haitian households for cooking. To sustain itself going forward, Haiti must focus on restoration of degraded farmland. June, 2016

honduras-flagHonduras        top
A DANGEROUS PLACE TO BE AN ENVIRONMENTAL ACTIVIST, BUT NOW IMPROVING: Environmental activist Berta Cáceres was responsible for delaying the building of a dam on the Gualcarque River, which would have destroyed the local environment. This was a true David and Goliath story. Unfortunately, she was killed but her legacy continues and new environmental groups have continued to make strides in protecting Honduras’s environment. “Berta didn’t die, she multiplied.”  March, 2017

hungary-flagHungary        top
HUNGARY’S HUNTER GUIDES AND PARK RANGERS HELP TO SAVE ENDANGERED ANIMALS: Informed hired guides and park rangers are now focused on reducing illegal hunting activities. As well, rangers have installed photo-traps that can detect hunters that are not permitted. Feb, 2014

icelandflagIceland        top
NEW WILDLIFE FUND ESTABLISHED: The Icelandic Wildlife Fund was established to fight large scale salmon farming and to protect Iceland’s environment and delicate ecosystem. Farmed salmon has a genetic make-up that is different from the native salmon species, conservationists argue, and they fear that sea cages could bring diseases which can infect the natural salmon stock. June, 2017
• ICELAND SERVES AS AN EXAMPLE FOR TRANSITION FROM NON-RENEWABLE ENERGY TO RENEWABLE ENERGY: 9 out of 10 homes in Iceland are heated by geothermal energy and almost 100% of its energy comes renewable resources. Dec, 2015, @MEP

icelandflagIndia        top
INDIA ENCOURAGES FARMERS FROM BURNING THEIR FIELDS AND CAUSING APOCALYPTIC AIR POLLUTION: Through education about the harmful effects of air pollution and encouragement to buy the new subsidized “Happy Seeder” machine, farmers are slowing beginning to find other means to clear their fields for the next growing season. According to the Punjab government, there were 81,000 fires after the rice harvest in 2016, then the figure dropped to 44,000 in 2017.   Oct, 2018
• INDIA WILL ABOLISH ALL SINGLE-USE PLASTIC BY 2022: This country will also introduce a campaign against marine litter and a pledge to make 100 national monuments litter-free, Prime minister Narendra Modi has announced. The pledge is the most ambitious yet of the global actions to combat plastic pollution that are taking place in 60 nations around the world. June, 2018
• WORLD’S LARGEST COAL MINE CLOSES 37 OF ITS MINES: 9% of Coal India mines will be decommissioned as soon as March 2018. This company presently produces 82% of the nation’s coal and closing these mines will produce £98 million in savings. The government, which originally encouraged coal expansion, is now determined to phase out coal power completely by 2050. June, 2017
• INDIA PLANS TO HAVE ONLY ELECTRIC CARS BY 2030: India plans to make sure that by 2030, the only vehicle you can buy is electric. This hugely ambitious plan, revealed by India’s energy minister Piyush Goyal, will replace over 28 million combustion vehicles, which now produce so much smog that you can see it from space. May, 2017
• WORLD’S LARGEST BEACH CLEAN-UP: Cleaning up 5.3 million kilograms of trash, India’s Versova Beach took two years and help from thousands of people to achieve a plastic-free beach. May, 2017, @MEP
• INDIA GIVES GANGES AND YAMUNA RIVERS LEGAL STATUS AS HUMAN: Becoming the second country after New Zealand to grant rivers human status, this legal status helps fight pollution of India’s most sacred rivers. Earlier this year, the government allocated $291 million to 20 projects under the Clean Ganga initiative. Most of the money will go towards building sewage treatment plants and upgrading infrastructure. March, 2017
• INDIA PLANTS 50 MILLION TREES IN 24 HOURS WITH 800K PEOPLE: Volunteers from Uttar Pradesh planted 80 different species of trees along roads, railways, and on public land breaking the Guinness World Record of 850k trees set by Pakistan in 2013. The saplings were raised on local nurseries. The effort is part of the commitment India made at the Paris Climate Conference in December 2015. In more recent news, India broke its own world record with 1.5 million volunteers who planted 66 million trees in 12 hours. July, 2017,  July, 2016, @MEP
$95 MILLION FOR CLEAN ENERGY PROJECTS: The US and India have together launched two large financial projects that will bring energy-efficient appliances to rural communities in India. Nov, 2016

IndonesiaFlagIndonesia        top
AN ISLAND MAPPED FOR MINES GETS A REPRIEVE AFTER VIOLENT PROTESTS: Residents of Wawonii have staged huge protests demanding the cancellation of mining permits on the island, located in Indonesia’s Southeast Sulawesi province. It worked. March, 2019, @MEP
• $4 BILLION EV BATTERY PLANT TO BEGIN IN 2019: This project involves investors from South Korea, Japan and China. Indonesia, with reserves of both nickel and cobalt used in lithium battery cathodes, is well positioned to meet that demand amid advancements in electric vehicle technology. Nov, 2018
• PLAN TO HALVE FOREST FIRES BY 2019: The government plans to spend $2.73 billion to ensure that 121,000 square kilometers of land, a fifth of it peat forest, will be fire-free. This will include empowering villagers and forest communities to prevent and tackle fires and a focus on more stringent enforcement of existing laws and regulations on forest concessions. Dec, 2017
MINING HALTED IN FRAGILE ECOSYSTEM: Indonesian government has ended a mining permit of the Wanyang Ming Goyoindo Company, thus protecting the Leuser Ecosystem. The local Sumatrans want to protect this area – the economic value, in terms of flood and fire prevention, water supply, agro-ecology, tourism, carbon sequestration, and a host of other ecological services — has been estimated at US $22.3 billion dollars. Sep, 2017
BIRDS OF PARADISE PROTECTED: Papua governor banned the sale of birds of paradise to protect them from extinction. Unfortunately, the feathers of this beautiful bird are still allowed to be used for traditional ceremonies.  June, 2017
• INDONESIAN PRESIDENT IMPOSES TWO-YEAR MORATORIUM TO PROTECT EXISTING FORESTS AND PEATLANDS: Indonesia often suffers from wildfires caused by deforestation, so in order to protect these lands the President has imposed a ban on any activity that could cause fires such as clearing land for agricultural use and draining peatland forests. May, 2017
• INDONESIA SINKS SCORES OF BOATS IN WAR ON ILLEGAL FISHING:  As a deterrent for perpetrators of illegal trawling, Indonesia recently destroyed 81 mostly foreign boats that had been caught illegally fishing in its waters, with a total of 300 since 2014, when President Joko Widodo launched a battle against the poaching of fish. March, 2017
• PRESIDENT JOKO WIDODO STRENGTHENS EFFORTS IN FIGHTING THE EFFECTS OF BURNING OF PEATLANDS: The Indonesian President has set up the Peatlands Restoration Agency to restore 5 million acres of peatlands that have been damaged by fire to create palm oil plantations in a serious effort to stop the haze. The smoke has covered the entire country, angering its citizens and neighboring countries. Jan, 2016

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IRAQ WARS HAVE DECIMATED ITS ENVIRONMENT, CALLING FOR THE UN TO CREATE AN ENVIRONMENT CODE OF CONDUCT DURING MILITARY OPERATIONS: Warring parties in Iraq use the destruction of the environment and burning of oil wells as a measure of intimidation. The UN Environmental Programme, UNEP, has cited a number of international resolutions devoted to preserving the environment even during military conflicts, and noted that next year, it will be hosting an “Environment and Emergencies Forum.” Oct, 2016

IranFlagIran        top
• IRAN AND FRANCE WORK TOGETHER TO HELP THE ENVIRONMENT: These two countries signed a bilateral plan to focus on Iran’s energy efficiency, water management, fight against air pollution and the protection of biodiversity, with an emphasis on the former two. Sep, 2016
• SOLUTIONS TO IRANIAN DUST STORMS: Iranian Parliament granted $100 million to combat dust storms, caused by mismanagement of water and global climate change. The government has claimed that their work has helped to restore up to 70% of the water that was once found in the Hoveizeh wetlands. July, 2009

IrelandFlagIreland        top
IRELAND COMMITS TO CARBON-FREE BY 2050: The government published a long-awaited report on Monday outlining more than 180 measures to curb the country’s greenhouse gas emissions and set a path for net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. It envisages a rise in carbon taxes, a multibillion-euro scheme to retro-fit houses, almost a million electric vehicles and a number of other measures to change behaviour by institutions, companies and individuals. June, 2019
DITCHING PEAT FOR WIND: Ireland is using wind turbines instead of peat to produce cleaner, more efficient energy. Peat produces 23% more carbon dioxide than coal, in comparison to wind energy, which has more than enough capability to provide for Ireland’s domestic energy demand by 2030, according to Ireland’s energy department. April, 2017
• IRELAND TO RECEIVE A €50 MILLION FUND TO BE INVESTED IN CREATING HEALTHIER FORESTS: Irish businessman Paul McMahon, head of SLM Agri-investment firm, plans to transform clear-fell plantations into more sustainable forests by introducing native broad-leaf species. Jan, 2016

Flag Israel.svgIsrael        top
FOOD EXPIRATION DATES TO UNDERGO REVOLUTION: New automated artificial intelligence grocery-pricing system from Israel promises to slash food waste, cut prices for consumers, and increase profits for supermarkets. “Food expiration dates are the main cause of retail waste and the cost is tremendous, both to business and to the environment,” says Oded Omer, co-founder of Wasteless. “Food is the single largest product in landfills, where it emits extremely harmful gases, including methane.’’ Nov, 2018
• ISRAEL WILL BAN GASOLINE & DIESEL VEHICLES AFTER 2030: All passenger cars in Israel will be electric and all trucks will be powered by electricity or compressed natural gas, if a proposal currently under consideration gets approved by the government at the end of this year. Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz tells Reuters the biggest challenge will be creating a “critical mass” of electric and CNG powered vehicles before the deadline arrives. “We are already encouraging [the transition] by funding…more than 2,000 new charging stations around the country,” he says. Nov, 2018
• ISRAEL WILL SOON HAVE THE WORLD’S TALLEST SOLAR TOWER: A staggering 50,000 mirrors will harness the sun’s energy. At 250 metres tall, the Ashalim solar thermal power plant will create enough electricity to power 130,000 homes or 1.6% of Israel’s entire energy needs. The vast project uses computers to direct the sun’s rays toward a central tower in the middle. This then heats water stored in a boiler at the top of the tower turning it to steam which in turn fuels a turbine creating the electricity. May, 2017, @MEP
• ISRAELI START-UP DRAWS POTABLE WATER FROM THE AIR WE BREATHE: Water Gen provides a cheap alternative solution to potable water by extracting water  from the air. This works especially well in humid, tropical countries like Vietnam where there is a severe drought. Vietnam and India are the first to use this technology, which can be as much as 20 times cheaper than existing systems. “Two-thirds of the world has drinking-water problems,” Executive Chairman Pasik said. “This is a humanitarian issue. We would like to maintain peace between people and save people’s lives. The project itself is priceless and is huge.” April, 2017
• WATER CONSERVATION: Israel is the world leader in water conservation. It has such an efficient infrastructure of water supply and conservation that it can now function without rain. Desalination plants, extreme rationing, low flow everything, and high public awareness are the key elements of its success. Feb. 2016

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SCULPTURE INSTALLED IN VENICE TO BRING AWARENESS OF CLIMATE CHANGE: Artist Lorenzo Quinn created two giant white hands that appear to support one of Venice’s most important buildings, Palazzo Morosini Sagredo, as his way of raising awareness of the sinking city and its vulnerability to climate change.  “The hand holds so much power – the power to love, to hate, to create, to destroy,” Quinn said. May, 2017
• ITALIAN WOOL WILL NO LONGER POLLUTE THE ENVIRONMENT AS MUCH BY USING SHRIMP AS AN ECO-FRIENDLY ALTERNATIVE: Instead of using harsh chemicals and a lot of water that strains and pollutes the environment, the creation of Italian wool will use new technology with shrimp to bypass harmful chemicals. July, 2016

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JAMAICA TAKES AIM AT TRASH: This island nation The island is one of several Caribbean countries set to ban plastic bags, straws and Styrofoam. Oct, 2018
• CANCELLATION OF $1.5 BILLION TRANSHIPMENT PORT PROTECTS ENDANGERED IGUANA: The Jamaican government has opted to protect its Goat Islands by cancelling this lucrative project, citing the irreparable damage to this fragile iguana habitat, and because there are other cheaper, eco-friendly alternative locations for this planned port. Sep, 2016

japan-flagJapan        top
MAZDA AIMS FOR ALL VEHICLES TO BE ELECTRIC HYBRID, EVs BY 2030: Joining a growing number of global automakers, Mazda has said that it plans to market an all-battery EV in 2020. On Tuesday it said it would develop two battery EVs, one which will be powered solely by battery and another which will pair a battery with a range extender powered by the automaker’s rotary engine. Oct, 2018
• ENERGY CONGLOMERATE MARUBENI TO SLASH COAL ENERGY BY HALF: Marubeni, the world’s 11th largest coal power producer, will no longer enter into any new coal-fired power generation business. and it plans to slash its ownership in coal-fired energy assets in half by 2030. Sep, 2018, @MEP
• YOKOHAMA AWARDED AS TOP CITY FOR ITS FOCUS ON CLIMATE CHANGE: The city government plans to cut carbon emissions by 80% by 2050 by engaging citizens and stakeholders. Jan, 2016
• JAPANESE MONKS RECORDED CLIMATE FOR 700 YEARS: Monks who lived by Lake Suwa recorded changes in the ice since 1443, making it one of the most complete records of climate data ever, allowing for scientists to see how much the world has been affected by climate change. April, 2016
• JAPANESE GOVERNMENT PUTS ITS COMPANIES’ ENVIRONMENTAL RECORDS ONLINE: The Japanese government is creating a database in English and Japanese that reveals its companies environmental records, which includes corporations such as Toyota Motor and Sony. Aug, 2016

jordan-flagJordan        top
LARGEST SOLAR PLANT IN A REFUGEE CAMP: This $17M 12.9 megawatt 40,000 panel solar plant will provide power for nearly 80,000 Syrian refugees, according to the UN Refugee Agency. It will save over 13,000 tons of carbon emissions per year and save the agency $5.5m/year of running costs. Nov, 2017, @MEP
• GREEN SHOPPING MALL THE START OF ECO-FRIENDLY MOVEMENT: The Abdali Mall is the first mall to be built to strict “green” standards with water recycling, natural heating and cooling, and hundreds of solar panels. The country presenting spends an enormous 1/5 of its national budget on importing energy, so this mall sets an important precedent for businesses and future construction projects. July, 2016

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KAZAKHSTAN DEALING WITH NUCLEAR FALLOUT: When Kazakhstan was part of the Soviet Union, it was the testing site for nuclear weapons. Now, with $15 million from the United Nations, the government monitors the environmental health of these sites and the surrounding areas. As well, there are many programs to re-mediate the land and save the Aral Sea, once the world’s largest lake that has now lost 70% of its water. 2017

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FARMERS TAKE ON ENVIRONMENTAL INITIATIVE: After Kenyan farmers suffered debilitating droughts, they have begun a movement to reclaim their food systems from the clutches of big agribusiness, middlemen and from the lure of agrochemicals. Urban consumers have also mobilized themselves to support the local farmers. June, 2017
• KENYA BANS PLASTIC BAGS: Kenya announces that it will become the second country in Africa to ban plastic bags.The ban was hailed by the United Nations Environment Programme as a breakthrough. “Our oceans are being turned into rubbish dumps,” says Erik Solheim, the head of the agency. Cameroon, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia, Mauritania and Malawi are among the countries that have adopted or announced such bans. March, 2017, March, 2017, June, 2017 @MEP
LARGE SUGAR COMPANY PLEDGES TO STOP POLLUTING RIVER: Kenya’s government, with help from Israeli and German nonprofits, are now focused on recycling its water and cleaning its rivers, many of which flow into Africa’s largest body of water, Lake Victoria. Kibos Sugar is presently cleaning up its dumping practices, which have polluted Kenya’s rivers and reduced its fish population significantly. Feb, 2017

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• KIRIBATI IS PREPARED TO TRANSPLANT ITS ENTIRE POPULATION AS A RESULT OF CLIMATE CHANGE: The remote Pacific Island, which lies only six feet above sea level, has bought 6,000 acres on Fiji in preparation for the eventual flooding of its country. In an attempt to mitigate this devastating situation, the World Bank project in 2003 built sea walls and fresh water tanks to help the island adapt to the rising Pacific Ocean. July, 2016

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• ENVIRONMENTAL REMEDIATION PROGRAM INITIATED TO CLEAN UP 1990 INVASION EFFECTS: The UN has allocated $3 billion to clean up crude oil spills that occurred during the 1990 Iraq-Kuwait War. There is an estimated 60 million cubic meters of contaminated soil that needs to be remediated, including hundreds of oil lakes. Jan, 2011

kkyrgyzstan-flagKyrgyzstan        top
• KYRGYZSTAN WORKING TOWARDS IMPROVED AIR QUALITY: Working with the UNECE, Kyrgyzstan agreed that protocols on restricting heavy metals and persistent organic pollutants was feasible within current legislation and would also work to improve its air quality. This work encompasses numerous neighboring countries developed under the Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution (Air Conference)2016

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ECOTOURISM PAYS LOCALS FOR ANIMAL SIGHTINGS: To incentivize local villagers from poaching, development funds from tourism pays villagers for each tourist and additional money for each animal sighting. The result has been less poaching and more money for local communities.  March, 2018
• COMMERCIAL TIGER FARMS TO BE PHASED OUT: Lao Laos has more than 200 commercial tiger farms with over 7000 tigers, whose parts are sold primarily to Chinese consumers. The government is focused on stopping this trade, which will help to protect the species from extinction. Sep, 2016

latvia-flagLatvia        top
LATVIA IS TOP BALTIC ENVIRONMENT-FOCUSED NATION: Despite inconsistencies in results regarding improved environmental protection, Latvia has drastically improved its air quality and cleanup from ecological damage that was a legacy of its history in the former Soviet Union. Despite these struggles, their environment-saving actions are far outpacing neighboring countries. Dec, 2014, July, 2016

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LEBANESE PROTEST TRASH: Lebanese are tired of trash piling up on the streets and have demanded the resignation of environmental minister Mohammed Machnouk. This grassroots uprising is a promising first step of social action necessary to change the ways of its government, which has not passed a budget since 2005, and has been without a president for more than two years. Sep, 2015, Aug, 2016

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• 14 MILLION PEOPLE IN LESOTHO WILL BENEFIT FROM WATER SECURITY PROJECT: The African Water Facility and the NEPAD Infrastructure Project Preparation Facility are investing €3.5 million to create a water security plan that will offset recent unreliability of water resources and drought, which are a result of climate change. Water management is critical in Lesotho, as it will support economic growth and alleviate poverty. Feb, 2017

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LIBERIA BECOMES THE FIRST COUNTRY IN AFRICA TO STOP LOGGING: Norway will pay Liberia $150 million to stop deforestation by 2020. Some researchers have connected the current outbreak of Ebola with the widespread destruction of the forests, bringing people into contact with natural reservoirs of the virus. Sep, 2014

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LIBYA FREE FROM CHEMICAL WEAPONS: Gadhafi’s chemical stockpile that contained 25 metric tons of sulfur mustard, 1,400 metric tons of precursor chemicals, and 3,500 unfilled aerial bombs designed to deliver chemical weapons were destroyed in a facility 600 kilometers south of Tripoli. May, 2014

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LIECHTENSTEIN SCORES HIGH FOR SUSTAINABILITY: This country has created an sustainable development grading system for itself with 55 indicators. In 2016, 32 were evaluated positively, showing an improvement from the previous year. The government states, “Sustainable development is a development that can meet the needs of today’s generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” June, 2016,  2016

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• LITHUANIA AND UKRAINE COOPERATE ON ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION: These two countries signed an agreement to protect the environment and ensure the rational use of natural resources. Dec, 2016

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• LUXEMBOURG TO CUT GREENHOUSE GASES BY 40% BY 2030: In accordance with the Paris Agreement, 2015, Luxembourg’s goals are one of the most ambitious of all nations. The government is particularly focused on increase the efficiency of water management and the transport sector, which is responsible for 68% of its greenhouse gases. Oct, 2016

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• €100 MILLION DAM FACES CANCELLATION: Funding for the dam is expected to be scrapped after the Bern Convention declared that this project would put at risk critically endangered species, including the Balkan lynx. Oct, 2015

madagascar-flagMadagascar        top
• ENDANGERED LEMURS ARE NOW BEING STUDIED WITH ADVANCE 3D TRACKING SOFTWARE AIMED TO ASSIST IN THEIR SURVIVAL: George Washington University researchers created a new non-invasive facial recognition system, LemurFaceID, to track lemurs in Madagascar and study their behavior and habitat, in the hope of saving this endangered species. The plan is to use this software to study other endangered species as well. Feb, 2017

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SAVING 500 ELEPHANTS BY RELOCATING THEM: Conservationists in Malawi are transporting families of elephants from dangerous areas to safer places such as national parks that build fences to keep poachers out. June, 2017
• MALAWI WANTS TO CUT DOWN ON CARBON EMISSIONS: As one of the poorest countries, Malawi will sign the Paris Agreement only if it receives help from other rich nations. Deforestation is rampant as wood is the main source of energy (charcoal) and coal appears to be the next best solution. However, with international assistance, it has offered to reforest its hills, expand the use of clean cookstoves and this country also has a vast potential for solar energy. Nov, 2015

malaysia-flagMalaysia        top
• MALAYSIA ESTABLISHES ITS LARGEST MARINE PARK: After 13 years of negotiation and working with world partners including the WWF, Malaysia has created the Tun Mustapha Park, one million hectares (10k sq-km) of ocean that will protect coral reefs, mangrove, sea grass and productive fishing grounds. Local communities and fisherman will be able to continue to fish in a bid to ensure a “sustainable use of resources.” June, 2016

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THE MALDIVES BECOMES THE BIGGEST MARINE RESERVE IN THE WORLD: Maldive President Waheed now has banned the trade of sharks, fish and turtles as well as becoming a sanctuary for endangered fish that migrate here to escape overfishing. June, 2012

maliflagMali        top
MALI SAVED ITS ELEPHANTS FROM EXTINCTION: With information about poaching and habitat destruction provided by Susan Canney’s Mali Elephant Project, local communities and conservationists decided to band together to protect endangered elephants from corruption, war, and a wide spread poaching crisis. First, they set aside an area of reserve pasture the size of Yellowstone NP and then recruited young volunteers to act as vigilance networks. April, 2014

maltaflagMalta        top
MALTA LAUNCHES NEW ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY: In an effort to save land from development, the Maltese National party decided to write permanent provisions into their constitution to protect the environment. Doing this will remove environmental issues from political elections and protect the country from investors not interested in sustainability. Jan, 2017

marshallislandsflagMarshall Islands        top
MARSHALL ISLANDS HAVE BECOME SOLARIZED: This country will soon have solar panels for all homes, schools, water pumps, and refrigeration. With 54% of the world’s raw tuna coming from from this and seven other small Pacific islands, the government is trying to create more renewable energy so that fish processing can be performed locally to stimulate its economy. Nov, 2013

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• PLANTING ACACIA TREES PROVIDES A GREEN SOLUTION IN MAURITANIA: With drought ever more present in this and neighboring African countries, the World Bank is now funding an effort to plant more Acacia trees, which is known for its drought-resistant qualities. In addition, it is the source of gum arabic, which used to be this country’s top export. This Great Green Wall Initiative will help restore degraded ecosystems and improve rural livelihoods while helping to stave off encroachment of the Sahara desert. July, 2016

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SAVING THE OCTOPUS: In a win for both humans and octopuses, the Mauritian government with support from local NGOs and the UN led the first national octopus fishing closure for two months of the year. This allowed for more octopuses to survive and the weight of catches to double. April, 2017
• PRESIDENT FOCUSES ON PROTECTING MAURITIUS FROM CLIMATE CHANGE: Citing more violent cyclones caused by climate change, this Indian Ocean island democratic nation is now focused on protecting its biodiversity and utilizing more renewable energy, such as solar, wind, and possibly ocean waves. Jan, 2016

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CREATES HUGE MARINE PARK SOUTH OF BAJA, CALIFORNIA: Mexico’s government has created a marine park the size of Illinois in the Pacific, the largest ocean reserve in North America for the conservation of giant rays, whales and turtles, including dozens of species endemic to the area. Called the Revillagigedo Archipelago, located some 390 km (242 miles) southeast of the Baja California peninsula, it is now a national park. Nov, 2017
GOVERNMENT BANS FISHING NETS TO SAVE RARE PORPOISE: After a widespread campaign from conservation groups such as the World Wildlife Fund and the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, Mexican President Nieto signed an agreement that will permanently ban fishing nets. Vaquitas, an endangered porpoise with fewer than 30 in the wild,  is often unintentionally trapped in these nets. June, 2017 
• MEXICAN CONSERVATION SUCCESSES PROTECTED BY LOCAL COMMUNITIES: The conservation of land in Mexico is being threatened by mining companies, but local communities like the town of Capulálpam has fought back through legal channels that has blocked any mining concessions and allowed for the continuation of protection of the town’s diverse flora and fauna. April, 2016
• MEXICO CALLS FOR LEGAL REFORMS IN ENVIRONMENTAL CRIME: By linking organized crime to illicit wildlife trafficking, authorities in Mexico seek to more effectively protect Latin American wildlife. Wiretaps, electronic surveillance and undercover operations, tools already used to combat organized crime, would thus also be implemented to stop this illegal trade. Oct, 2015

monaco-flagMonaco        top
• MONACO VOWS TO BE CARBON-NEUTRAL BY 2050: The government plans to be -50% in 2030, compared to 1990, and carbon neutral by 2050. In order to achieve these goals, the government has coordinated with 59 organizations to ensure the entire community will be involved. March, 2017

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• NOMADIC HERDERS ARE BANDING TOGETHER TO ADAPT TO CLIMATE CHANGE: Mongolia has no national regulations on pastural land management, so Mongolian herders have banded together to form pasture user groups, PUGs, to increase household income, manage grazing schedules and rehabilitate valuable grasslands. Oct, 2016

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LOCALS SEEK TO STOP DAM CONSTRUCTION: A 14,000 signature petition to stop construction of four dams in Montenegro was submitted to the government in order to save the trout population and the fishing industry, which is an important source of sustenance for its citizens. April, 2010

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LARGEST SOLAR PLANT IN THE WORLD: Morocco is building a solar plant to provide half of it country’s energy, over a million homes. To be finished by 2020, this plant, located in the Sahara Desert, also plans to export excess electric energy to Europe. Feb, 2018,  Oct, 2015
• FIRST BIKE SHARING SCHEME IN AFRICA: Marrakech has implemented a bike sharing scheme to help cut down carbon emissions. It now has over 5000 users and the rental company Smoove hopes to expand its reach across Africa, potentially to Kenya, South Africa and Cote d’Ivoire. May, 2017
• MOROCCO LEADS AFRICA IN RENEWABLE ENERGY AND PLASTIC BAN: Morocco has pledged by 2030 to have 52% of its energy come from renewable sources and banned plastic bags in 2015. Nov, 2016

mozambiqueflagMozambique        top
NATIONAL MARINE PARK TO BE BETTER PROTECTED: The conservation NGO African Parks signed an agreement to manage Bazaruto Archipelago National Park in Mozambique. The 552 sq-mi park was established in 1971, but recent illegal fishing and unregulated tourism has threatened the ecosystem and its economic value. African Parks manages more than a dozen other protected areas in Africa.  Dec, 2017
• MOZAMBIQUE BATTLES ILLEGAL LOGGING TO SAVE TROPICAL FORESTS: Through enforcement of environmental laws, a moratorium of logging permits until 2019, and intelligence gathering, the Mozambique government has been cracking down on illegal logging, reported to be 93% of all logging most of which is sold to China. This illegal trade amounts to a half a billion dollars a year. April, 2017

myanmarflagMyanmar        top
PROTECTED AREA EXPANDED FOR RARE IRRAWADDY DOLPHIN: The Myanmar government has expanded the Irrawaddy Dolphin Protected Area, initially spanning 74 kilometers (46 miles) of the Irrawaddy River, to include a 100-kilometer (62-mile) stretch of the river. Use of gillnets is restricted within the new protected area, and damaging activities such as electric or dynamite fishing and gold mining are strictly prohibited. An additional 100-kilometer stretch has been designated as a buffer zone, with milder restrictions. Oct, 2018
• ELEPHANTS BENEFIT FROM LOGGING BAN: After the country banned logging, a push for elephant ecotourism has emerged, allowing for elephants who were previously used for labor in the logging industry to live better lives. May, 2017
• PRINCESS BEGINS GREEN MOVEMENT: Myanmar’s Princess Thant Cin has begun an environmental movement  to fight deforestation and environmental degradation, such as teaching people the importance of bamboo and protecting it for the future. Presently, this country has the third-largest bamboo reserves globally. Jan, 2017

Namibia-FlagNamibia        top
NAMIBIA CUTS DOWN ON BYCATCH: 63 billion pounds of unwanted wildlife – seabirds, marine mammals and sea turtles, countless fish species, rays, and cephalopods — are killed as bycatch due to the swallowing of baited hooks or entanglement in nets, including 30,000 seabirds each year. Namibia has now instituted new bird scaring lines that are attached to nets so that endangered birds such as the endangered Tristan albatross are not caught, with the hope reducing avian bycatch by 85-90 percent in the near future. April, 2017
• NAMIBIA ENVIRONMENT MINISTRY TO PUNISH ILLEGAL SAND MINERS: Miners that extract sand are destroying the landscape, mahangu grain fields and grazing land. The government is now requiring miners to submit an environmental rehabilitation plan. Those found illegally sand mining without a permit will now face 25 years in jail or a $37,000 fine, or both. Jan, 2017

Nauru-FlagNauru        top
NAURU’S FORMER PRESIDENT WARNS THE WORLD ABOUT CLIMATE CHANGE: This small eight-square mile Pacific island nation has had an unfortunate history of phosphate mining, which has ruined most of the interior of the island, once a lush tropical rainforest. This has left citizens to live only along the coast line, which now faces three feet of rising sea level in the coming decades. Despite his focus on his own country, President Marcus Stephen warns the world that his country’s plight will be the same for others if climate change is not reversed soon.  This New York times opinion piece profiles a large voice coming from a small island. July, 2011

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NEPAL USES MICROHYDRO PROJECTS TO CHANGE WAY OF LIFE: Before the installation of microhydro projects, rural Nepalese didn’t have electricity, but now these projects provide new opportunities for business without greenhouse gas emissions and pollution of water. June, 2012

Netherlands-FlagNetherlands        top
AMSTERDAM BANS ALL GAS AND DIESEL VEHICLES BY 2030: The city council announced on May 2 that gasoline and diesel-fueled cars and motorcycles will be banned in Amsterdam by 2030 to help ease pollution and clean up the air. “Pollution often is a silent killer and is one of the greatest health hazards in Amsterdam,” said Sharon Dijksma, the city’s traffic councillor. May, 2019 @MEP
• ROTTERDAM SHIPPING PORT EYES A GREENER FUTURE: Presently, this port produces 20% of this country’s climate-changing gases, but this port now has introduced financial incentives for fume-belching ships and other port facilities to invest in renewable power, with the aim of slashing the port’s carbon dioxide emissions from shipping and industry by 49% by 2030. By 2050, emissions would fall 90%, in line with national targets, according to the plan.  Oct, 2018
• SUPERMARKET HAS AISLE WITH NO PLASTIC ITEMS: Amsterdam’s Ekoplaza has 700 plastic-free items for sale and plans to expand this idea to all 74 stores by years end. “Plastic-free aisles are an important steppingstone to a brighter future for food and drink,” said Ekoplaza chief executive Erik Does, who was inspired by environmental group A Plastic Planet. Feb, 2018
DUTCH ACTIVISTS RAISE MONEY FOR FORCE GOVERNMENT TO REDUCE AIR POLLUTION: A Dutch environmental organization, Friends of the Earth, has launched a crowdfunding campaign to pay for new legal action aimed at forcing the Dutch government to do more to combat air pollution. Campaign leader Anne Knol says that “every day that we breathe polluted air is one too many.” May, 2017
• NETHERLANDS COMBINE SUSTAINABILITY PRACTICES WITH BUSINESSES AND SCHOOLS: With around a fifth of the country under sea level, its government has created sustainable business practices such as Sustainable Tuesdays, when its companies come up with environment-saving initiatives during that day of the week. Sustainability issues are also integrated into its schools’ curriculum. Sep, 2013

NewZealand-FlagNew Zealand        top
NEW ZEALAND RIVER LEGALLY RECOGNIZED AS A LIVING ENTITY: The New Zealand Parliament passed a bill that recognizes the Whanganui River as an entity with all the same rights as a human, something that the Maori people have been fighting for 160 years to achieve. This is the first river in the world to obtain this status. The government plans to contribute $30m to a fund that will be used to look after the river’s health. March, 2017, @MEP
• NEW ZEALAND EPA REJECTS TWO BIDS FOR OFFSHORE MINING: The EPA rejected two bids from major companies that would have destroyed the seabed and biodiversity off the coast of New Zealand, a major victory for ocean conservation. Feb, 2015, June, 2014

Nicaragua-FlagNicaragua        top
• NICARAGUA PLANS TO BE 75% RENEWABLE BY 2017, 90% BY 2020: With little oil reserves, this country is now tapping into its natural resources – strong winds, bright sunshine, and its 19 volcanoes. Nicaragua also plans to sell excess renewable energy to its neighboring countries. Jan, 2016

Niger-FlagNiger        top
• HIGH HOPES FOR GIRAFFES IN NIGER: With giraffes being threatened by human development and drought, Niger’s environment ministry has partnered up with the Giraffe Conservation Fund  to create the Kouré Giraffe Reserve to protect the remaining 600 giraffes from poachers and promote ecotourism. To accomplish these goals, the reserve plans to train 18 tour guides. March, 2017

Nigeria-FlagNigeria        top
GREEN BONDS: The government has issued $72 billion in bonds designated for clean energy, transportation and generating resources for climate change projects like forest-planting and a mass transit system. May, 2017
• NIGERIA CLEANS UP LEAKED OIL: After residents of the Niger Delta region complained about petroleum leaking into water sources and land caused by oil companies, the Nigerian government has planned a massive multibillion-dollar cleanup of the land and water while creating sustainable job practices. March, 2016

Niue-FlagNiue        top
HUGE MARINE RESERVE CREATED: The tiny island nation, population 1624, will establish a new marine protected area (MPA, to be the 28th largest in the world) to cover 40 per cent of the island’s exclusive economic zone. The 127,000 sq km MPA includes much of the waters around Niue itself as well as nearby Beveridge Reef, an uninhabited, semi-submerged atoll that has the largest density of grey reef sharks in the world. Oct, 2017
• NIUE FIGHTS EFFECTS OF TOURISM: The small island nation receives training from the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme to combat the negative effects from tourism on the environment. Sep, 2016

NorthKorea-FlagNorth Korea        top
NORTH KOREA INVITES AMERICAN SCIENTISTS TO LEARN MORE ABOUT CONSERVATION OF ENVIRONMENT: After the massive deforestation of the 1990s and its devastating effects, North Korean scientists asked for help from American scientists on solutions of conserving its environment. April, 2012, March, 2012

Flag_of_Norway.svgNorway        top
1/3 OF SALES ARE NOW ELECTRIC CARS: Almost a third of new cars sold in Norway last year were pure electric, a new world record as the country strives to end sales of fossil-fueled vehicles by 2025. In a bid to cut carbon emissions and air pollution, Norway exempts battery-driven cars from most taxes and offers benefits such as free parking and charging points to hasten a shift from diesel and petrol engines. Jan, 2019
• GOVERNMENT FORBIDS PURCHASING OF PALM OIL BIOFUEL: Norway’s parliament voted to ban the public procurement of palm oil biofuel because of the immense environmental destruction caused by the collection of palm oil that results in deadly fires and severe habitat loss. Norway has recommended the European Union to do the same. June, 2017
• NORWAY LEADS THE WORLD AND WILL BE CLIMATE NEUTRAL BY 2030: This country has put into action an accelerated program of CO2 cuts and carbon trading to reduce emissions from areas such as the country’s oil and gas industries, which are likely to be completely removed from Norwegian life in the near future. They plan to have cars running only on green energy by 2025. Feb, 2017
NORWAY PLANS TO BAN ALL PETROL AND DIESEL CARS BY 2025: Norway is set to ‘completely ban’ the sale of all petrol and diesel powered cars by 2025. Politicians from both sides of the political spectrum have reached a concrete agreement that 100% of Norway’s cars should be powered by green energy. June, 2016
• BAN DEFORESTATION: Norway is now the first country committed to zero deforestation, which bans any product in its supply chain that contributes to the deforestation of worldwide rainforests through the government’s public procurement policy. June, 2016
HUGE DIVESTMENT OF STOCKS IN COAL: Norway’s  $890B government pension fund, one of the largest in the world, is divesting holdings of fossil fuel stocks as a way to show it focus on renewable energy. June, 2015

Oman-FlagOman        top
OMAN ONE OF FIRST ARAB COUNTRIES FOCUSED ON THE ENVIRONMENT: The Sultan has been promoting the importance of preserving the environment for decades and has strict penalties for the re­lease of pollutants and discharge of effluents, both in the land and the maritime territory of Oman. In 2011, an annual “Clean Up Oman Day” was initiated, attracting over 15,000 volunteers. July, 2015

Pakistan-FlagPakistan        top
• PAKISTAN OFFERED SOLUTIONS FOR ITS ENVIRONMENTAL DEGRADATION:  At a three-day international conference, ‘Energy, Environment and Sustainable Development’, organised by Pakistan’s Mehran University of Engineering and Technology MUET, scholars from all over the world offered solutions to Pakistan’s pollution and energy crisis through recommendations of developing renewable energy sources and better management of water and waste. Nov, 2016

Palau-FlagPalau        top
PALAU’S CORALS KEY TO SAVING THE WORLD’S CORALS: In a virtual reality video, The Economist explains how Palau’s corals are thriving in acidic and unusually warm water that could show how other corals could survive climate change. March, 2017
PALAU HAS DECLARED ITS WATERS A “SHARK SANCTUARY”: In 2009, this Pacific island nation conducted a study, which found that one reef shark during its full life is worth $1.9 million to Palau in tourism revenue. Sold for consumption the shark is worth around $108.  Since then, it has declared whales, dolphins, and dugongs off-limits as well, making it one of the most progressive marine conservation nations in the world. May, 2011

Panama-FlagPanama        top
PREFERRING LOCAL SUSTAINABLE PRACTICES INSTEAD OF UN MONEY: The indigenous Panamanian Kuna tribe, who resides in the carbon-rich forests of the San Blas Archipelago, rejected funding from UN’s Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD+), wanting instead to maintain its subsistence farming and other sustainable practices that it has been doing for hundreds of years. REDD+ uses “carbon trading” as incentive for countries to become more sustainable, but this tribe finds this notion too complex. Sep, 2014

PapaNewGuinea-FlagPapua New Guinea        top
CREATED LARGEST EVER CONSERVATION AREA: This country created the Managalas Conservation Area, its largest-ever conservation area, a 3,600-square kilometer (1,390-square mile) protected area of rainforest in the country’s southeast that stretches from near the ocean up into the mountains. Dec, 2017
• PROMOTING ECO-TOURISM:  This country is contributing to the development of sustainable tourism opportunities through APEC and is taking a community-level approach to develop tourism solutions. This includes a focus on marine education awareness, supporting eco-tourism initiatives and helping local people to create tourism business plans. June, 2017
• NEW RESEARCH PROJECT TO MAKE THE FOREST INDUSTRY MORE SUSTAINABLE: The project – Enhancing value added wood processing in Papua New Guinea – led by University of Melbourne will research how to make improvements to the local wood processing industry. A $1.1 million grant will help the government meet its goal to increase the proportion of onshore processing to 80% by 2030. March, 2014

Paraguay-FlagParaguay        top
NGO TAKES ON TASK TO CONSERVE THE VANISHING ECOSYSTEMS OF PARAGUAY: Para la Tierra (PLT), the Paraguay-based NGO has engaged over 200 students and professors to help study its threatened lands and document the indigenous species, in an effort to bring attention to the precious ecosystem in its forests, wetlands and savannahs.  Outside of Paraguay’s protected areas, much of the land has now been converted to cattle ranches and soy plantations, some at a rate of 10% per year. Aug, 2013

flag_of_peruPeru        top
HUGE NEW NATIONAL PARK ESTABLISHED IN AMAZON: The Yaguas National Park is located in the Loreto Region of northern Peru and covers more than 868,000 hectares of Amazonian rainforest – around the size of Yellowstone National Park in the U.S. Peru’s newest national park is home to more than 3,000 species of plants, 500 species of birds, 550 fish species, and 160 species of mammals. Jan, 2018
• PERU USES SATELLITES TO DETECT AND STOP DEFORESTATION: The Monitoring of the Andean Amazon Project, MAAP, was established to monitor deforestation activity. Thus far, satellite images have identified numerous “hotspots,” which have since been halted, including gold mining, cacao and oil plantations. Aug, 2017
• A SUSTAINABLE WATER SOURCE CREATEDPresident Pedro Pablo Kaczynski, founded NGO Agua Limpia in his country to give water in a sustainable, green way to those who desperately need it. Oct, 2016
HOSTED COP20, THE BEGINNING OF THE WORLD MOVEMENT TO STOP CLIMATE CHANGE: Peru is proud to have hosted the COP20 conference, which were the initial and critical meetings that lead to the COP21 meeting, at which 195 countries pledged to stop and reverse climate change. Nov, 2014

philippines-flagPhilippines        top
ADDITIONAL 1 MILLION HECTARE MARINE PROTECTED AREA: Six municipalities have rallied together to further conserve Palawan’s coastal and marine areas that are vital sources of livelihood, minerals, and raw materials, as well as recreational, cultural, and other social activities. This step adds to the initial one million hectare marine protected area (MPA) declared a year ago. Oct, 2017, @MEP
• A COMMITMENT TO SCIENCE-BASED FISHING POLICIES: Realizing that 70% of their waters are overfished, this country is now set to work with the Environmental Defense Fund to bring data analysis and science into fisheries decisions by 2022. Oct, 2017
• POLLUTED WATERS IN FISHING TOWN OFFER LOCALS AN ECO-FRIENDLY ALTERNATIVE: After severe pollution and overfishing left the Danajon Bank void of marine life, the local community began diving for old nylon fishing nets that are then sold to carpet-makers in Europe. This idea has helped to lift people out of poverty and at the same time clean the environment. May, 2017, @MEP
• PHILIPPINES ENVIRONMENT SECRETARY CANCELS 75 MININGS DEALS : The Philippines ordered these contracts canceled because the projects damage watersheds and cause siltation in coastal waters and farms. “You kill water, you kill life,” said Secretary Gina Lopez. The canceled deals include the $5.9 billion Tampakan copper-gold project in South Cotabato that was to use open-pit mining on land the size of 700 football fields.. Feb, 2017

poland-flagPoland        top
POLAND GETS SERIOUS ABOUT CLIMATE CHANGE: Poland offers to host the 2018 United Nations COP24 summit, an international conference that promotes action in tackling climate change. It is focused on emission neutrality using innovation and techniques of CO2 absorption by soil and forests. Nov, 2016

flag_of_portugal-svgPortugal        top
OIL EXPLORATION PROJECT ABANDONED: The oil exploration project in Aljezur in the south of Portugal has been abandoned. GALP and ENI, the two companies involved in the project made the news public at beginning of November. The oil exploration project was the focus of much media attention since 2015. Both NGOs and the local people were campaigning against the project. A milestone in the campaign was reached in July, when a local Court halted the exploration project because of the risks it posed to the environment. Nov, 2018
• GROUP LED BY EDP RENEWABLES TO INVEST IN FLOATING WIND FARM: This wind farm can be used in deep waters where there is more wind to harness and will provide 25 MW of power, enough for 60,000 homes. They are the most powerful floating turbines to date. Oct, 2018
• RENEWABLE ENERGY FOR FOUR DAYS: Portugal kept its lights on with renewable energy alone for four consecutive days in a clean energy milestone. Energy needs were fully covered by solar, wind and hydro power. May, 2016

RepublicOfMoldovaFlagRepublic of Moldova        top
CLEAN WATER AND ENVIRONMENT FOR EVERYONE by 2025: The Republic of Moldova launches a national program to help bring clean water to impoverished areas of the country as well as create a protected environment. This include providing Ecosan toilets (waterless) and constructing wetlands, facilitating targeted trainings for urban and rural water operators and raising awareness on the importance of water, health and hygiene issues. Sep, 2016

RomaniaFlagRomania        top
ROMANIAN VILLAGE BANS CANADA FROM ENVIRONMENT-DAMAGING GOLD MINING: Rosia Montana has designated itself as a “historic site of national interest” to stop Canada’s 15-year attempt to receive gold mining permits, which would have toppled four mountains and released cyanide into the surrounding waterways. Jan, 2016

russianfederation-flagRussian Federation        top
RUSSIA BANS GMOs: This country becomes the world’s largest GMO-free territory and creates a global platform for the development of organic agriculture. Sep, 2016

rwanda-flagRwanda        top
PLASTIC BAG BAN TRANSFORMS COUNTRY: Citizens found carrying plastic bags or supermarkets with plastic packaging are now required to write apologies and/or face fines up to $19,000 and serve up to four years in jail. This severe penalty has transformed the environment, from plastic-choked rivers into a clean plastic-free state. Oct, 2017
• SOLAR KIOSKS INSTALLED: Solar kiosks, which contain solar panels that provide renewable energy, help create jobs and lower carbon emissions. 600 stations are to be installed in 2017 providing electricity to recharge cellphones and more. June, 2017
• WORLD MEETING BANS FLUOROCARBONS: Rwanda hosted a hugely successful 28th Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol, with 200 countries now phasing down the use of hydrofluorocarbons, or HFC’s, which are super-polluting, powerful greenhouse gases. Oct, 2016

saintkittsandnevis-flagSaint Kitts and Nevis        top
• PROGRAM TO FUND ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES AND INITIATIVES: Projects sponsored by the UN Development Program and the Global Environment Facility are now cataloging these islands’ native flora, fauna and habitats in order to raise awareness of climate change and make recommendations as to how best to conserve its resources. March, 2017

saintlucia-flagSaint Lucia        top
• GOVERNMENT COMMITTED TO PRESERVATION OF MARIA ISLANDS, A BALANCE OF TOURISM AND THE ENVIRONMENT: The government and a developer are creating the “Pearl of the Caribbean,” a development that plans to balance the need for a strong tourism-based economy while studying and preserving the island’s pristine land and marine environments, which are the basis for why many visitors are attracted to this island. Saint Lucia Forestry Department Officer and others are still concerned that not enough has been considered to protect the already endangered wildlife. April, 2017, April, 2017

saintvincentandthegrenadines-flagSaint Vincent and the Grenadines        top
HOW THE COUNTRY’S FIRST SUSTAINABILITY SCHOOL CAME TO BE: After a horrific hurricane in 2010, the island decided to create its first sustainability school, Richmond Vale Academy, which has become a center for learning about climate change. The school brings together local students as well as students from Europe, North America, South America, other parts of the Caribbean and Asia for programs of one, three or six months duration, in which they learn about global warming, its causes and consequences. March, 2017, @MEP

samoa-flagSamoa        top
SAMOA ESTABLISHES A $57 MILLION PROJECT FOR THE ENVIRONMENT: This government project will manage flooding and enhance climate resilience of the Vasigano River catchment, thanks to the Green Climate Fund. Another $22 million will be shared by neighboring island countries to focus on renewable energy. Dec, 2016

SanMarino-FlagSan Marino        top

saotomeandprincipe-flagSão Tomé and Príncipe       top
THIS SMALL WEST AFRICAN ARCHIPELAGO CONSERVES ITS RICH BIODIVERSITY: These islands are home to 27 endemic species, one of the highest concentrations of biodiversity in the world. In 2006, the government created two nature reserves, São Tomé Obô Natural Park and the Príncipe Natural Park,  representing 1/3 of its country’s total land, in order to protect these species from extinction and habitat loss. Dec, 2016

saudiarabia-flagSaudi Arabia        top
PLASTIC PACKAGING OF IMPORTS MUST BE BIODEGRADABLE: With plastics now able to be created with an oxo-biodegradable material, the Saudi Standards, Metrology and Quality Organization (SASO) has announced new Energy Efficiency Labeling Regulations for certain electrical and electronic products. Manufacturers and importers must ensure their products are compliant with the new regulations before accessing the South Arabian market. This includes shrink wrap, plastic bags, plastic cases, and styrofoam. Aug, 2017, Oct, 2017
• CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY HAS UNTIL 2019 TO GO GREEN: Saudi Arabia has introduced new air, water and noise pollution standards to preserve the environment. This is a big move toward sustainability. Among the present 170 projects underway, the biggest megaproject, the King Abdullah Economic City valued at $93 billion, will have all green buildings, helping to lower the region’s carbon emissions and improve public safety and health.” May, 2014

senegal-flagSenegal        top
SHRUB HELPING RURAL SENEGALESE ADAPT TO CLIMATE CHANGE: With food security and access to water being impacted by climate change, the shrub Senna (or Cassia) italica is being grown on a large-scale after traditional crops are severely affected by climate change. This medicinal crop not only allows for these rural communities to make a profit, but grow it organically without the use of pesticides. June, 2017
• FIGHTING FOR THE ENVIRONMENT THROUGH RELIGION: Senegalese Imam calls for protecting the environment through the teachings of Islam. Aug, 2015
STUDENTS CREATE APPS FOR ENVIRONMENTAL AWARENESS: Senegalese students are creating free phone apps that includes fun quizzes and games so that users can enjoy learning about environmental issues. The app is called “Weer Weeldé,” which means “a healthy planet for a healthy life” and is an innovative way to engage the younger population. Aug, 2016

serbia-flagSerbia        top
SERBIA HAS TO PROTECT ITS ENVIRONMENT IN ORDER TO JOIN THE EU: Serbia has introduced a Green Fund to put money into clean-up efforts and environmental remediation in a bid to join the EU. If it can fulfill its mandate to spend €8m to clean its copper polluted Borska Reka River as well as other damage to its environment, it will receive an additional €2.5m environmental fund from the EU. May, 2016

seychelles-flagSeychelles        top
TWO NEW MARINE PARKS – SIZE OF GREAT BRITAIN: This island nation has now protected 210,000 square kilometers of surrounding ocean. This area is the home of the rare giant tortoises. The Nature Conservancy assisted in a debt-for-nature deal that will allow the Seychelles to restructure its national debt in exchange for protecting 30 percent of its exclusive economic zone. Feb, 2018
• SEYCHELLES TO PROTECT ITS CORALS: With climate change damaging its corals, Nature Seychelles, a non-profit org, grew 45,000 fragments of coral in underwater nurseries and then planted a degraded area in the special reserve of Cousin Island, covering the size of a football field. April, 2017

sierraleone-flagSierra Leone        top
• SIERRA LEONE USES DATA REVOLUTION FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT: With the help of the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data, this country is now focused on the UN-define Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). Its ambitious plan is collect data, analyze it and form policies in order to eradicate poverty and hunger, diversify its economy and ensure inclusive green growth that is beneficial to all Sierra Leoneans. July, 2016

singapore-flagSingapore        top
DYSON TO BUILD ELECTRIC CAR IN SINGAPORE: James Dyson, the billionaire British inventor of the bagless vacuum cleaner, has chosen to invest $2.6B to build his electric car in Singapore to be close to Asian customers, supply chains and a highly skilled workforce. Dyson is looking to exploit its ability in solid-state battery technology and electric motors that are found in its innovative vacuum cleaners and other products. This and other carmakers are stepping up investment in electric vehicles in response to ever-tightening emissions restrictions and penalties on the use of internal combustion engines, with some countries already promising outright bans. Oct, 2018
• PUBLIC SECTOR LEADS THE WAY FOR CUTTING EMISSIONS : The public sector is Singapore’s largest employer. By 2020, it plans to use 15% less electricity and 5% less water compared with 2013 levels. To do this, it will build Green Mark Platinum buildings and buy more green electronics and paper products for its offices. June, 2017
• A 36% EMISSIONS REDUCTION BY 2030: In order to meet its Paris Agreement goals (2015), Singapore has promised to reduce its country’s emissions by 1-2% a year. It plans to work together with both the community and businesses to fulfill this pledge. July, 2016

slovakia-flagSlovakia        top
• KIA MOTORS SLOVAKIA WINS AWARD FOR MOST SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE AND SUSTAINABLE COMPANY: To win this national award, Via Bona, Kia Motors Slovakia had to produce high quality environmentally-friendly cars, create good working conditions for its employees as well as help the local community, be fair to suppliers, and meet its tax duties towards the state. April, 2017

slovenia-flagSlovenia        top
• SLOVENIA DECLARED THE WORLD’S MOST SUSTAINABLE COUNTRY IN 2016: Its capital, Ljubljana, was declared Europe’s Greenest Capital in 2016 by the European Union. Slovenia achieved an eye-opening 96 out of 100 detailed sustainability indicators (think environment and climate, culture and authenticity, nature and biodiversity, among others). March, 2017

solomonislands-flagSolomon Islands        top
STUDENTS FROM SOLOMON ISLANDS PROMOTE SUSTAINABILITY: Students of the Australia-Pacific Technical College Honiara (APTC) proudly launched the Green Action Plan, which promotes awareness of environmental issues, including plans to clean up their local areas and create ‘green’ lunches that produces only biodegradable trash. April, 2017

somalia-flagSomalia        top
• SOMALIA WATER AND LAND INFORMATION MANAGEMENT, SWALIM, FOCUSED ON WATER: In this arid and semi-arid country, SWALIM, supported by the UN, helps to bring potable and sustainable water practices to Somalians to ensure that future generations will be able to drink clean water. United Nations

southafricaflagSouth Africa        top
ERADICATION OF INVASIVE SPECIES IN THE MARION ISLANDS: Researchers and conservationists have eradicated wild cats through humane methods to protect endemic species such as birds who were being endangered by these animals. June, 2017
• GREEN ENERGY SECTOR GOOD FOR THE ECONOMY: The National Green Fund has led to the creation of 6,000 jobs to help this country’s transition to a low carbon, resource efficient and climate resilient development path delivering high impact economic, environmental and social benefits. May, 2017
• RHINOS NOW PROTECTED BY US ARMY VETERANS: Retired US Army veterans are now offering their services for free to stop poachers from killing rhinos, whose horns can fetch $65,000/kilo. This country is home to 80% of the world’s wild rhinos, where only 13 were poached in 2007. In 2015, the total was nearly 1,200. May, 2017
• DROUGHT FORCES THE NEED FOR DESALINATION PLANT: After South Africa experienced severe drought, Richards Bay and other coastal cities are creating an expensive desalination plant to meet the demand for fresh water. Another option that is 1/4 the electricity cost, is upgrading the water treatment plants, such as treating sewage water back to drinking water, and repairing leaky old water infrastructure where one quarter of the water is lost, but this appears at present to be opposed by certain local groups. Feb, 2017

southkoreaflagSouth Korea        top
2018 OLYMPICS TO BE GREEN: The International Olympic Committee is now promoting all Olympics to environmentally friendly and the PyeongChang organizers promise that the 2018 Winter Games will continue this policy. They will provide solar and wind power to event venues, create a recycling infrastructure, and provide a public transportation network. They are promoting transparency by sharing their environment-saving goals and plans with the public.   Jan, 2018
• SEOUL HELPS LOW-INCOME HOUSEHOLDS AND BATTLES CLIMATE CHANGE AT THE SAME TIME: The city does this by replacing old lightbulbs with LED bulbs and also installed solar panels on more than a thousand roofs in 2015. Jan, 2016
• PLANS FOR A SUSTAINABLE 2018 OLYMPICS GAMES: The city of Pyeongchang has outlined its sustainable goals for a green Olympics that include recycling infrastructure after the games, providing sustainable construction, strengthening cooperation networks, generating self-efficient renewable energy and minimizing carbon emissions, among other goals. April, 2017
• ENVIRONMENTAL FOCUS AND 50% NUCLEAR POWER BY 2020: South Korea is focused on its Four Rivers Restoration Project, to restore its rivers and boost tourism. It is also focused on nuclear power, which now powers a significant part of its energy needs and it exports nuclear technology and knowhow to other countries. Feb, 2010

southsudanflagSouth Sudan        top
SOUTH SUDANESE RECEIVE FUNDING FOR BASIC SANITATION FACILITIES:  The Japanese government has given this country $1.25 million to improve access to safe water and to promote hygiene practices through educational activities and construction of sanitation facilities.  So far, 10 new boreholes have been installed and 17 hand pumps have been rehabilitated in villages with poor access to safe water. Japanese Ambassador to South Sudan, Kiya Masahiko, said, “Access to clean, safe water and enhancement of hygiene at school not only helps pupils concentrate on studies and achieve higher goals but promotes health and development of an entire community.” April, 2017

spainflagSpain        top
• FIRST ENERGY SELF-SUFFICIENT ISLAND: El Hierro, one of the Canary Islands, is the first island to be completely energy self-sufficient. El Hierro’s created a $110 million 11.5-megawatt turbine farm that generates energy to support water desalination plants and 10,000 residents. Wind power is expected to cut yearly carbon dioxide emissions by 18,700 metric tons and reduce annual consumption of oil by 40,000 barrels. In the event of heavy winds, El Hierro expects to sell surplus energy and profit handsomely, between $1,400,000 and $4,200,000. May, 2014
• WIND ENERGY HAS PROVIDED THE MOST ENERGY OF ALL RESOURCES IN THE LAST THREE MONTHS: The country delivered over six terawatt hours of electricity from wind farms. Feb, 2013

srilankaflagSri Lanka        top
• SUSTAINABLE METHODS KEY TO SAVING SRI LANKA’S TEA INDUSTRY: Sri Lanka’s Ceylon tea, famous for being the “finest and cleanest tea in the world for 150 years,” is now being grown in fluctuating weather systems that include prolonged droughts and higher variability of rainfall, compared to years past. Local farmers, like tea smallholder Samanudaya Kumara of Udahaupe Estate, have discovered that the shift to herbicide-free practices can increase profits by 60%. April, 2017

sudanflagSudan        top
PRIMARY SCHOOL REHABILITATED FOR 600 STUDENTS: With €2 million from the European Union, the Sudanese government has reopened a new primary school, which is a major accomplishment for this war torn country, and a major step toward educating the next generation. The government states, “This is concentrated effort between the local communities and national and international organizations. Education is the only path out from ignorance and towards advancement of mindsets, in short the road towards economic empowerment. This type of project, provides for and protects communities.” April, 2017

surinameflagSuriname        top
SURINAME SHUTS DOWN ALL ALUMINUM MINING: After years of strip mining, leaving environmental scars in this small South American country, Alcoa Aluminum has negotiated a departure package with the government that includes reforesting the ruined areas. April, 2017

swaziland-flagSwaziland        top
SWAZILAND’S SMALL ENVIRONMENTAL AUTHORITY FIGHTS BIG BUSINESS: The newly created Swaziland Environmental Authority is now equipped to enforce environmental laws. The Ngwenya Iron Ore Mine is a particular focus, as it has produced a tremendous amount of pollution and destruction to the environment. Jan, 2012

Flag Sweden.svgSweden        top
IKEA TO CUT GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSION BY 80% BY 2030: The commitment applies to IKEA’s own factories and most of its direct suppliers, brand owner Inter IKEA said in a statement. Efficiency across production and shifts to renewable energy, such as biomass-based for the energy-intensive particle-board production, will help reach the new target. Nov, 2018
• ALL VOLVO CARS TO BE ELECTRIC OR HYBRID FROM 2019: All new cars launched by Swedish owned Volvo from 2019 onwards will be partially or completely battery-powered, in what the company called a “historic end” to building models that only have an internal combustion engine. Between 2019 and 2021, the firm will introduce five 100% electric models, and ensure the rest of its conventional petrol and diesel range has a hybrid engine of some form. It is the first major manufacturer to make such a bold move. July, 2017
• IKEA INVESTS €600 MILLION IN RENEWABLE ENERGY PRODUCTS: The giant Swedish furniture company plans to be a net exporter of renewable energy by 2020. IKEA says it’s going “all in” to have a net positive impact on the climate through renewable energy investment, energy-efficiency measures, cutting supply chain emissions, and product changes designed to achieve behavior change. It has already helped its suppliers become 18% more energy efficient over the past four years.  May, 2016
• SUSTAINABILITY LEADER: Sweden is considered the “One of the World’s Most Sustainable Country,” being a leader in organic agriculture, renewable energy, as well as per capita investment in green technology and sustainability research. 75% of Swedes recycle, with only 4% of garbage going to landfills. Sweden also imports trash to burn as a renewable energy source.  Nov, 2014
HUMANITARIAN SUPERPOWER: Since 2001, 650,000 asylum-seekers have made their way to Sweden. Despite this remarkable track record for accepting refugees, Sweden now faces a herculean task to integrate this new population into their society. Sep, 2016

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SWISS VOTERS SUPPORT FOCUS ON RENEWABLES: Swiss voters backed the government’s plan to provide billions of dollars in subsidies for renewable energy and ban new nuclear plants. “The voting public has … paved the way for a future that builds on sustainability, renewable energies and energy efficiency. Today’s decision is good for the climate, the environment, our jobs, the Swiss economy and the whole population,” the Social Democrats said. May, 2017
• ALDI SWITZERLAND BECOMES CO2 NEUTRAL: In 2017, after this large retailer switched exclusively to hydropower, all stores across the country are now collectively CO2 neutral. Jan, 2017
• SWITZERLAND CREATES NEW LAW TO STOP OVERFISHING: Switzerland has instituted a new ordinance that bans seafood from fisheries that don’t respect catch quotas or conservation laws. The European Union, of which Switzerland is not a member, has had a similar policy since 2010. Feb, 2017

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SYRIA JOINS THE REST OF THE WORLD IN ITS FOCUS TO SAVE THE ENVIRONMENT: Along with Nicaragua, these two countries become the last countries in the world to join the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement. Congratulations to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change for this amazing achievement. Nov, 2017

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• ENVIRONMENTAL AUDITS NOW REQUIRED: Tajikistan government now requires companies to perform environmental audits, including an assessment of their use of air and water, disposal of waste, and issues related to land contamination and remediation. Oct, 2015

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BANNING OF PLASTIC ALCOHOL SACHETS TO PROTECT YOUTH AND ENVIRONMENT: The Tanzanian government now bans the selling of alcohol in sachets because students and its citizens pollute the environment by throwing the non-biodegradable packaging onto roads and into the sewers or vacant lots after consumption. May, 2017March, 2017
TO PROTECT BOTH ELEPHANTS AND HUMANS FROM HARM: Conservationists have resorted to filling condoms with chilli-powder that keeps elephants away from human settlements. This novel technique does no harm to elephants and also keeps people safe as well as their crops. Aug, 2016

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THAI POLICE SUCCESSFUL IN IVORY TRADE CRACKDOWN: Thailand had been considered to have the largest unregulated ivory market in the world before it introduced the Elephant Ivory Act in 2014 and 2015. The country has made serious efforts to block elephant ivory from being smuggled into the country and sent on to another country. July, 2017
• THAILAND IS A ROLE MODEL FOR CLEANING UP SMOG: Thailand has become a model for cleaning up heavy smog by imposing strict emission standards, including phasing out heavy polluters such as two-stroke motorcycles, asking Bhuddist city crematoriums to change from wood-burning pyres to more sophisticated electric incinerators, and cajoling oil companies to produce cleaner fuel. March, 2007

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THREE MAJOR SUSTAINABILITY PROJECTS: 80% of the population on this small island nation are smallholder farmers. With $21M from the Global Agriculture and Food Security Trust Fund and the help from other world agencies, these farmers are now able to increase their crop yields. And, with new knowledge about commerce, they are able to successfully participate in the world markets and thus increase their annual income.  Feb, 2018

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TOGO CITY RECYCLES E-WASTE: Lomé start-up Woelab now upcycles old printers, computers and laptops into new products. They are also encouraging high-school students to get the most out of limited resources and promote a clean environment. Dec, 2016

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THIS PACIFIC ISLAND NATION RECEIVES PORTION OF $22 M FUND TO COMBAT CLIMATE CHANGE: Tonga is highly dependent on subsistence agriculture, extremely vulnerable to natural hazards, and heavily reliant on donor aid. The Asian Development Bank has provided a $22 million grant for a multi-country renewable energy program. Dec, 2016,  April, 2016

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YOUTH RALLY TO STOP CLIMATE CHANGE: The IAMoverment and New Fire Festival began in 2014 and attracts young environmental activists to think about ways they can live sustainably and save the environment. So far, each year attracts more people and volunteers.  Festival Founder Gerry Williams states, “Consumption is one of the biggest drivers of climate change. We have to alter our consumption habits. We hope that the festival will be an inspiring experience to all…that outside of the festival they will incorporate some of it into their lives.” April, 2017

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HUGE SOLAR PARK TO PROVIDE SAHARAN POWER TO EUROPE: A €5B 4.5GW solar mega-project aims to power two million homes in Europe. Tapping into the powerful sun in the Saharan Desert, TuNur Company plans to transport the electricity via underwater cables to Malta, Italy and France. Sep, 2017
• TUNISIA BANS PLASTIC BAGS: In an effort to reduce plastic waste, shoppers will no longer be able to get single-use bags at supermarkets. These plastic bags have been banned by the government, making it the first Arab nation to take such a step. March, 2017
• TUNISIA JUST GOT SERIOUS ABOUT PROTECTING THE ENVIRONMENT: Tunisian Minister of Affairs Riadh Mouakher announced the launch of a new Environmental Police Unit that would be dedicated only to breaches of environmental law and pollution. Sep, 2016

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TURKEY RAISES FINES FOR MARINE POLLUTION AFTER OIL SPILL: After a ship hit rocks and spilled 50 tons of oil in Western Turkey, the Ministry of Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communication has risen fines for marine pollution by 41 percent. April, 2017

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FOCUS ON CONSERVING THE CASPIAN SEA REGION: Turkmenistan’s government has produced projects to conserve and research the Caspian Sea’s biodiversity along with a special UN program to protect the sea’s ecological well-being. May, 2016

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PRIME MINISTER INTRODUCES GROUNDBREAKING UN RESOLUTION TO PROTECT CLIMATE CHANGE MIGRANTS: This small Pacific island nation’s Prime Minister Enele Sopoaga introduced international legislation to create legal protection for people displaced by the impacts of climate change, saying there was currently no international framework to protect their rights. May, 2016

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• YOUTH WANT TO HELP THE ENVIRONMENT: Youth groups from Uganda spoke at the 2016 COP22 in Morocco, claiming climate negotiations are not going far enough to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees centigrade. Nov, 2016
UGANDA FIRST AFRICAN NATION TO BAN PLASTIC BAGS: Officials want Ugandans to instead use banana leaves, the traditional material for carrying goods. Environmentalists say discarded bags, which pile up on roadsides, wetlands, and unused land, spread disease and hurt wildlife. July, 2007

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• CHERNOBYL – FROM ENVIRONMENTAL DISASTER TO RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCE: The Ukrainian government is considering transforming this nuclear wasteland into a solar farm, producing a third of the electricity that the stricken plant generated at its height 30 years ago. Solar is now cheaper than nuclear and this plan is feasible, despite the area being off limits to human habitation. July, 2016

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ABU DHABI PLANS TO BUILD WORLD’S LARGEST SOLAR PLANT: The 1,177 megawatts plant will open in 2019 and cost $872 million to build. The builders and future operators of this plant have offered to provide electricity at 2.42 cents per kilowatt hour, one of the most competitive prices seen in the solar industry. May, 2017
• FIRST SOLAR POWERED GAS STATION OPENS IN DUBAI: A government oil company in this country has opened its first gas station totally powered by solar energy. The 120 kilowatt-hour system provides 30 percent more energy than the station needs, so the excess power is directed back into the city’s electric grid. April, 2017 
UAE TO SAVE $192 BILLION BY SWITCHING TO RENEWABLE ENERGY: Forecasts show that switching half of the country’s power needs to renewables by 2050 will generate savings that outweigh the costs of investment. In fact, as the UAE invests $150 billion into renewable power between now and 2050, it will save an additional $192 billion as it reduces its dependency on subsidized natural gas power. Solar energy is the main focus of this sunny country. March, 2017

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UK COMMITS TO NET ZERO CARBON BY 2050: The United Kingdom has become the first major economy to commit to ‘net zero’ carbon emissions after outgoing Prime Minister Theresa May announced she would set a 2050 target before leaving office next month.
It is the first time that a major G7 economy has made a commitment to achieving ‘net zero’ carbon emissions, but Norway (2030) and Finland (2035) have set significantly earlier target dates. Last month, the UK parliament declared a ‘climate emergency’ after pressure from environmental and climate protesters. June, 2019, @MEP
UK RENEWABLE ENERGY CAPACITY SURPASSES FOSSIL FUELS FOR FIRST TIME: In the past five years, the amount of renewable capacity has tripled while fossil fuels’ has fallen by one-third, as power stations reached the end of their life or became uneconomic. The result is that between July and September, the capacity of wind, solar, biomass and hydropower reached 41.9 gigawatts, exceeding the 41.2GW capacity of coal, gas and oil-fired power plants. Nov, 2018
• PIVOT POWER TO BUILD $33M BATTERY, EV CHARGING HUB NEAR MOTORWAY: As a part of efforts to meet its target to cut greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent of 1990 levels by 2050, the UK currently has about 16,500 charging points but will need this to increase to at least 100,000 by 2020 to accommodate new EVs coming to the roads over the same period. Oct, 2018
• 50 MILLION TREES TO BE PLANTED: This project will span 120 miles and 62k acres. “A new Northern Forest could accelerate the benefits of community forestry, support landscape scale working for nature, deliver a wide range of benefits, including helping to reduce flood risk, and adapt some of the U.K.’s major towns and cities to projected climate change,” says Austin Brady of the Woodland Trust. Jan, 2018
• SCOTLAND TO LAUNCH WORLD’S FIRST LARGE-SCALE TIDAL ENERGY FARM: The turbine, measuring about 15 metres tall (49ft), with blades 16 metres in diameter, and weighing almost 200 tons, will soon begin its journey to the waters off the north coast of Scotland. There it will begin to harness the movement of water. This turbine is cable of 1.5MW and there are plans to install 268 more, enough electricity for 175,000 homes. Sep, 2017, @MEP
• BRITAIN WILL BAN PETROL AND DIESEL CARS FROM 204O: Britain will ban the sale of new petrol and diesel-powered cars from 2040 as part of a plan to get them off the roads altogether 10 years later. Prime Minister Theresa May’s Conservatives have pledged to make “almost every car and van” zero-emission by 2050. July, 2017
• UK HAS SWITCHED ON THE WORLD’S LARGEST WIND TURBINES: Towering at an incredible 640 feet and sporting blades some 262 feet in length these wind turbines are larger than some skyscrapers and have the ability to power a house for 29 hours through just a single rotation. Dong Energy, the Danish company that installed them, confirmed that the Burbo Bank offshore wind farm extension in Liverpool Bay is made up of 32 8MW wind turbines, with the ability to power over 230,000 homes. May, 2017, @MEP
• SCOTLAND’S RENEWABLE ENERGY: Scotland joined an elite group of countries that provided for one day all of it country’s energy requirements with only renewable resources. They plan to use renewable energy exclusively, wind, hydro and solar, by 2020. The success of Scotland’s strategy can be seen at the Whitelee Wind Farm, where 215 wind turbines occupy 15 square miles. Oct, 2016

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NEW YORK CITY SAYS ITS 1.1M STUDENTS CAN SKIP CLASS FOR THE CLIMATE STRIKE (AS LONG AS THEIR PARENTS SAY OK): New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said he supports the move, writing in a tweet, “New York City stands with our young people. They’re our conscience”. In New York, crowds will rally Sep 20, 2019, in downtown Manhattan at 12 p.m. ET, where a roster of young climate activists will speak. Sixteen-year-old Greta Thunberg, who sailed to New York to speak at the UN Climate Action Summit on September 23, is one of the speakers. Sep, 2019, @MEP
NEW YORK TO BE 100% RENEWABLE BY 2040: Bill triples solar power, adds 9 gigawatts of offshore wind. Solar power will be 6 gigawatts by 2025 from about 1.7 gigawatts currently. It also calls for 9 gigawatts of offshore wind power by 2035. This Green Bill places it ahead of all other states. June, 2019
STATE OF WASHINGTON TO BE 100% RENEWABLE BY 2045, MANY OTHER STATES TO FOLLOW: In the absence of federal action on climate change, more states are setting ambitious targets to reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. Washington became the latest on Tuesday when Gov. Jay Inslee signed a law requiring that 100 percent of the state’s electricity come from clean energy sources by 2045. May, 2019
PUERTO RICO TO BE 100% BY 2050: Puerto Rico has passed a bill to radically transform the island’s economy with renewable energy as the central pillar. The territory’s legislature today approved Senate Bill 1121 (PS 1121), the Puerto Rico Energy Public Policy Act, which will set the island on a path to 100% renewable energy by 2050. The bill pushes the island to become a leader in clean energy technology that can better withstand future hurricanes and improve quality of life for Puerto Ricans. March, 2019, @MEP
• MARYLAND – FOAM CUPS AND FOOD CONTAINERS TO BE BANNED, FIRST STATE IN USA: Both chambers of the state legislature this month passed bills banning food containers made of polystyrene, known as plastic foam. March, 2019, @MEP
• DC BANS GAS-POWERED LEAFBLOWERS: Electric leafblowers would still be allowed. Gas-powered versions would be outlawed in January 2022. The gas-powered leaf blowers are a common sight in fall. The problem, according to D.C. Councilmember Mary Cheh, is that they are too loud. “The essence of the bill is to deal with noise,” Cheh said. “They’re much noisier, but as a byproduct, we will also be the beneficiaries of a better environment.” Dec, 2018
• WASHINGTON, DC, UNVEILS STRONGEST CLIMATE BILL IN USA:  Washington DC voted unanimously to pass legislation mandating 100 percent renewable electricity in the capital by 2032 This is the most powerful climate legislation in the country. It also goes beyond the utility sector, requiring that all public transportation and privately owned fleet vehicles emit zero carbon dioxide by 2045, putting it in line with California’s newly adopted auto emissions target. The provision applies to fleets with more than 50 passengers, according to Utility Dive, meaning the ride-hailing services Uber and Lyft are included. The legislation, which would apply to federal government buildings including the White House, comes as the Trump administration is bolstering the oil and gas industries and rolling back nearly every major policy aimed at reducing emissions. “Even though by ourselves we are a small jurisdiction, we can serve and have served as a model for other jurisdictions,” Mary Cheh, the Democratic councilwoman who authored the original bill, said in a statement.  Dec, 2018, @MEP
• CALIFORNIA LAWMAKERS PASS HISTORIC BILL MANDATING ONLY CARBON-FREE POWER BY 2045: “This is a response to the threat of climate change and to the inaction in Washington, D.C.,” Dan Jacobson, state director of Environment California, said by phone after the vote. “While we’re not the first state in the country to go to 100 percent, we will lead many, many other states around the country to go to 100 percent.” Aug, 2018
OCEAN CITY BREAKS GROUND ON SOLAR POWER FARM: Constellation, an Exelon company, is planning to install more than 30,000 solar panels on 113 acres (85 football fields). Officials said the project will generate as many as 200 temporary jobs and account for 20 percent of Ocean City’s electric power. “The savings is about $140,000 a year. Aug, 2018
• OFFSHORE WIND: NJ SETS STAGE TO ADD CLEAN ENERGY SUBSIDY TO YOUR ELECTRIC BILL: The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities released a draft rule that would establish offshore wind energy certificates (ORECs), which are the subsidies that utilities and their customers will pay for energy produced by zero-emission turbines miles off of our coast. This is huge boost to increasing renewable wind energy.  Aug, 2018
•  WASHINGTON DC HAS THE MOST ATTRACTIVE SOLAR ENERGY PROGRAM IN THE US: This city has a program that incentivizes companies to install solar panels on their roofs. Using a Solar Renewable Energy Credit program (SREC), the utility is now required to provide a proportion of their energy provided by renewables that will rise from 15% presently to 50% in 2032. To obtain this goal, the utility must either create their own renewable energy supply or incentivize the end customer to do the same, otherwise they must pay a large penalty.  Jan, 2017
• TESLA INTRODUCES FIRST ELECTRIC BIG RIG TRUCK: To be introduced in 2019, this truck will have a 500 miles range per charge when fully loaded and go from 0 to 60 in five seconds. Owner Elon Musk said his trucks can reach 65 mph up a 5 percent grade, compared to 45 mph with a diesel engine truck. Nov, 2017
• CA ENVIRONMENTAL REGULATOR MARY NICHOLS LEADS 12 STATES TO REDUCE CAR EMISSIONS TO 54.5 MPG BY 2025: As the US leader in climate issues, California intends to uphold its intention to reduce car emissions to 54.5 mpg by 2025, nearly double the average in 2012. That aggressive target would compel automakers to speed the development of hybrid and electric cars, and to improve the fuel efficiency of their conventional fleets. And because 12 other states now follow California’s standards, this represent more than 130 million residents and more than a third of the vehicle market in the United States. Sep, 2017, @MEP
SAN FRANCISO AND OAKLAND SUE OIL COMPANIES OVER RISING SEAS:  These suits claim that a slate of oil, gas and coal producers not only caused the heat-trapping gases that drove sea level rise but knowingly did so, a challenge akin to litigation against big tobacco companies in the 1990s. All told, about $10 billion of public property and as much as $39 billion of private property are at risk, according to the city. Sep. 2017, @MEP
CHICAGO REDUCES EMISSIONS BY 7% WHILE  THE USA ECONOMY EXPANDED BY 12%: During 2010-2015, this city 1) closed its two coal plants, 2) retrofitted over 54m sq-ft of buildings to make them more energy efficient, 3) encouraged alternatives to driving, including having the biggest bike share program in the country and spending $8.5bn toward the modernization of its mass transit system, and 4) added zero emission vehicles to its fleet as well as charging stations.  Aug, 2017
OKLAHOMA TO HAVE SECOND LARGEST WIND FARM IN THE US: The 2,000 megawatt Wind Catcher facility will generate electricity from 800 of GE’s state-of-the-art 2.5-megawatt turbines. It will save customers more than $7 billion over 25 years. It also will build a power line across the state directly to Tulsa.   July, 2017, 2017
SANTA BARBARA COMMITS TO 100% RENEWABLES BY 2030: This city becomes the 30th city in the US to commit to renewable energy. June, 2017
OVER 250 US MAYORS ENDORSE SWITCH TO 100% RENEWABLES BY 2035: The US Conference of Mayors in Miami Beach produced a consensus amongst mayors to work together to fight climate change, an unprecedented achievement of cooperation between cities. June, 2017
• OIL-RICH TEXAS NOW LEADER OF WIND ENERGY: Faced with frequent drought and prevailing strong winds, farmers are now creating stable income by building wind farms, which produce 12% of the electricity in Texas, equivalent to powering 5.7 million homes. Texas is the leader of wind energy, followed by Iowa and California. Feb, 2017, @MEP
MARYLAND BECOMES FIRST MAJOR LOCALITY TO BAN NONESSENTIAL COSMETIC PESTICIDES: The measure targets pesticides containing chemicals that may cause cancer and allows only compounds that are organically based or deemed to be of minimal risk under the 1996 Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act. It exempts agricultural land, gardens and golf courses. May, 2017, @MEP
• MARYLAND POISED TO BUILD THE NATION’S LARGEST WIND FARM: There are a number of offshore wind farm proposals being considered in the Atlantic Ocean, which could provide renewable energy for up to 500,000 of the two million homes in this state. April, 2017
• WALMART KICKS OFF PROJECT GIGATON, REDUCING EMISSIONS BY ONE BILLION TONS OVER 15 YEARS: Walmart, the largest company in the world has partnered with numerous NGOs, such as the World Wildlife Fund, WWF, the Environmental Defense Fund, EDF, and The Nature Conservancy, TNC, to focus on its entire worldwide supply chain and reduce its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by one billion tons. The hope is that this enormous contribution, equivalent to removing  211 million cars off the road, will encourage other like-companies to do the same. April, 2017
• SOLAR ENERGY IS NEARLY ONE HALF THE COST OF COAL: In an energy auction in Chile, solar producers offered to supply electricity at about half the cost of coal-fired plants. China now produces two-thirds of the world’s solar panels, with prices that have fallen more than 80% since 2008. “This is the beginning of a trend that will only accelerate. We’re talking about an infinite fuel source,” said Chilean energy minister Andrés Rebolledo.  March, 2017
MARYLAND BECOMES THIRD STATE TO BAN FRACKING: Following New York and Vermont, Maryland has determined that despite reduced emissions from burning natural gas (extracted from fracking), it is concerned about the potential for water contamination, greenhouse-gas emissions and earthquakes. March, 2017, March, 2017
THE WEST’S LARGEST COAL-FIRED PLANT TO CLOSE DOWN:  The Navajo Generating Station outside of Page, Arizona will be closed by 2019, decades earlier than expected. This plant was third on a 2014 Environmental Protection Agency’s list of major carbon-emitting facilities. Record-low natural gas prices has made it more expensive to produce electricity at the facility than to purchase it from cheaper sources. Feb, 2017
USA AND CANADA TO PROTECT NEARLY ALL OF AMERICA’S ARTIC OCEAN: Working with Canada, US has saved 115 million acres of the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas (North of Alaska) from the risk of drilling. Dec, 2016
EMISSIONS REDUCTION: As the world’s sixth largest economy, California law SB32 requires polluters to pay for the emissions they produce. If this policy continues to work without disrupting the economy, others states and countries are expected to follow. Sep, 2015, @MEP
URBAN BIKE SHARE: New York and others cities now have bike share programs with 100s of locations to offer its citizens an easy alternative to using cars. @MEP
PRESIDENT OBAMA DESIGNATES LARGEST PROTECTED PARK IN THE WORLD: Hawaii has a new 1/2 million square-mile marine park the size of Texas, the largest protected area on earth, Aug. 2016. He has also created a new park in Maine, Katadin Woods and Waters National Monument, Aug, 2016, as well as five other new parks, March, 2013.
AMERICAN SAMOA TO SWITCH TO 100% RENEWABLE ENERGY: The island of American Samoa is switching from diesel generators to a new microgrid with 1.4 megawatts of solar-generation capacity and six megawatt hours of battery storage, enough to power the entire island night and day. This change was necessitated by the unreliability of diesel fuel delivery to this remote Pacific Ocean location. Nov. 2016, @MEP

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RENEWABLE POWER: In less than 10 years, with no government subsidies or higher consumer costs, renewables now provide 94.5% of Uruguay’s electricity. Wind turbines are now one of their biggest imports. Dec, 2015, @MEP
• URUGUAY MAKES IT MORE ACCESSIBLE AND CHEAP TO OBTAIN SOLAR PANELS: This government and solar panel companies are partnering to provide inexpensive solar panels, especially for people in rural areas, for collecting and heating water and heating their homes. July, 2013

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• VANUATU TO BAN DISPOSABLE NAPPIES IN PLASTICS CRACKDOWN: “Vanuatu is safeguarding its future,” said Mike Masauvakalo of the ministry of foreign affairs. “Eventually, plastics find their way into the water and the food chain and at the end of the day, the people of Vanuatu end up consuming [them]. June, 2019
WORLD BANK TO BRING RENEWABLE ENERGY TO THIS ISLAND NATION: All 45,000 residents will soon have access to renewable energy. This $4 million Electrification Project II, will be co-funded by the Scaling Up Renewable Energy Program and the government of New Zealand, and will be completed by 2030. June, 2017
• VANUATU BANS WESTERN JUNK FOOD: Banning imported western junk food that typically has low nutritional value, leaders of this Pacific island nation will only allow tourists and locals to eat locally grown, organic food to conserve its nation’s health and environment. Feb, 2017

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SMALL TOWN IN VENEZUELA PROVIDES LESSONS IN CONSERVATION: The town of Chichiriviche de la Costa in collaboration with local university students, teaches visitors and divers how to protect and preserve the precious corals and diverse marine life. April, 2017

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NEW PROJECT TO ESTABLISH COMMUNITY-BASED TOURISM THAT HELPS THE ENVIRONMENT: Apart from providing economic opportunities, the project’s goal is to “improve livelihood through community-based tourism”, which in turn is expected to improve environmental conditions and help preserve the traditional cultures of the selected ethnic minority communities. May, 2017
• VIETNAM NO LONGER TOLERATES ILLEGAL DUMPING: It appears that some of the population of Ho Chi Minh City is not yet fully aware of the negative effects of dumping trash into the street and sewers, so the government will now fine its citizens for illegal dumping VND7 million ($310).The city looks to incinerate 40% of its waste and bury the remainder as part of a master plan for solid waste treatment in the 2016-2020 period. Feb, 2017

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ZAMBIA CREATES NEW JOBS WITH A GREEN BENEFIT: With the help of the United Nations, the Green Jobs Programme in Zambia focuses on creating new jobs that benefit its environment and economy. July, 2015

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• ENERGY EFFICIENT LIGHTBULBS HELP ZIMBABWE REACH ITS CLIMATE CHANGE GOALS: By switching over to only LED bulbs, Zimbabwe would prevent the equivalent of 1,300 gigatons of carbon dioxide emissions over the next 13 years, according to the government’s plan drawn up under the Paris Climate Agreement. The ban was introduced in January and the switchover to more efficient bulbs is to be completed by the end of the year. May, 2017, @MEP