2018 Recap of the Environment

I relish Google advertisements during the New Year’s Eve show because they usually remind me what went on in the world for the past 365 days. This past year was a blur. Here are some of the environmental goings-on that I can recall- good and bad.

ami-vitale-last-male-northern-white-rhino-2

Image from TIME by Ami Vitale – National Geographic Creative.

In conservation news, although the last northern white rhinoceros ever passed away earlier this year, the loss spurred action to protect the southern white rhinoceros. Additionally, my blogging comrade Josh Gross (“The Jaguar”) posted about a reapplication of the Chinese ban on Tiger and rhinoceros parts. Stricter enforcement of laws such as this will halt the poaching of endangered animals for use in traditional Chinese medicine.

photo of two brown rhino

Photo by Frans Van Heerden on Pexels.com

People are genuinely concerned about plastic pollution and are starting to do something to reduce consumption at their own levels. Here are the stats to prove it. Searches for “zero waste” on Google increased two-fold since last year. Although some cities already had regulations in place regarding plastic bags, many more cities crafted bills this year to ban the bag.

zerowaste

Graph made using data from Google trends.

The Trump Administration released the Fourth National Climate Assessment this year. In summary, climate change is still happening and it’s getting worse.

pr_2013-01-hi-res2

Schematic by Bond et. al, American Geophysical Union 2013.

If you haven’t checked out my Quarterly Report page, please do. The California wildfires are finally contained, but prior to that they moved at a rate of nearly an acre per second. The hot, dry summer and strong winds fueled the raging fire as it forced evacuations of people in several counties of Northern and Southern California.

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Man rescues a bunny from CA wildfire. Video from ABC7 news.

Finally, Germany and London made moves to meet European Union emission policies this year or face fines. Germany is doing a trial run with free public transportation to see if the use of private vehicles will decline. London is making half of the streets in the historic center pedestrian-only and will reduce the speed limit to make it safer for bikers and walkers. Double-decker city buses are also changing over to electric only. However, London’s plan has been criticized for not addressing how bike lanes are going to be connected throughout the city.

336_Ventura-Systems-ADL-Hybrid-London

Image from Ventura Systems.

 

Do you recall any other heartening environmental news from this year? Let me know in the comments. I hope this post brightened your day. From, Jess 🙂

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