Roundup – World Environment News (15th June, 2017)

A lot has happened over the last fortnight with respect to the environment. Governments of various countries, including top polluters like China and India, have come together to take concrete steps to save the environment. The Paris accord continues to gain strength and traction – countries like China, India and the EU have put more force behind the Paris accord to compensate for the pulling out of the USA. Kenya follows the footstep of countries like Bangladesh in banning plastic. These collective steps hold a lot of promise for our world. It is when we take steps like this we start rolling back the damage we have already done to this environment. We will attempt to showcase the most significant steps taken to conserve the environment every fortnight. 

Asian nations make plastic oceans promise

At a UN oceans summit, delegates from China, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines said they would work to keep plastics out of the seas. This historic step was praised by UN officials. 75% of land-borne marine pollution comes from 10 rivers, predominantly from Asia. Reducing plastic pollution in these rivers by 50% will end up reducing worldwide plastic pollution by 37%.  Read more here.

India vows to go above and beyond the Paris Agreement 

With the mammoth blow of the US pulling out of the Paris agreement, other countries have unanimously come out to defend the Paris accord. China and the EU have reaffirmed their commitment to the agreement. Prime Minister Modi, speaking with President Macron, said, “The Paris agreement is the common heritage of the world. It is a gift that this generation can give”. India is the world’s 4th largest emitter of Carbon Dioxide after China, the US and EU. More here.

Kenya goes tough on Plastic – Says enough is enough

Environment secretary Judi Wakhungu two months ago gazetted a ban on use of plastic bags, which is set to come into effect in September. Environmentalists have praised the ban, saying it will help to minimize pollution of urban spaces, forests and water bodies. Phase 1 of the ban targets plastic flat and carrier bags. It also aims to designate areas under the Ministry of Environment like forests and reserves as plastic free zones. Phase 2 plans to target plastic bottles and primary packaging. Full article here.

Polluted environments kill 1.4 million in Europe and Central Asia annually; UN agencies urge urgent action

1.4 million people die prematurely in Europe and Central Asia due to pollution. These deaths can be prevented by making health a top priority across all government sectors, said Dr. Zsuzsanna Jakab, World Health Organization Regional Director for Europe (WHO/Europe), at the opening of the Sixth Ministerial Conference on Environment and Health in Ostrava, Czech Republic. European citizens annually lose 50 million years of healthy life due to environmental risks, corresponding to at least 15 per cent of Europe’s total deaths – around half of which are due to outdoor and indoor air pollution. More here 

More from Paris Accord – Trump said no, they say yes.

Many U.S. states, cities and businesses say they will forge ahead with the U.S. commitment to the Paris Climate Agreement, even though President Donald Trump pulled out of the deal. The U.S. under President Barack Obama pledged to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025.

Eleven states, plus Washington, DC and Puerto Rico, have vowed to pursue policies that will uphold the US’ commitments to the accord. They’ve joined the United States Climate Alliance, a growing, bipartisan group that seeks to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions nationwide.

Washington governor Jay Inslee, New York’s Andrew Cuomo, and California’s Jerry Brown announced the formation of the group on June 1, following Trump’s announcement about the Paris Agreement. A day later, another unnamed group, which contains 30 cities and over 80 university presidents, also pledged to work towards the emissions reduction goals that the US set as part of the accord. More here 

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  • All EcoRight products are made from fabrics that are durable, kind to the environment and in ethical manufacturing facilities (audited by SEDEX)
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