The Uplifting News

By Eco-Age

Sometimes it can feel like the news is all doom and gloom, so we're highlighting the most positive and uplifting news stories relating to sustainability, social justice and the environment for a little motivation and reminder to us all to keep going.

Thursday 9th January

National Trust to plant 20 million trees in UK over next decade

The National Trust is planning to plant 20 million trees over the next decade as part of efforts to achieve net zero emissions by 2030. The organisation made the announcement, which it says will cost £90m-100m, on Thursday to mark its 125th anniversary.

Wednesday 8th January

On the frontline of the climate emergency, Bangladesh adapts

In the scorching farmlands of south-west Bangladesh, a single coconut tree stands as a barometer of climate change. Dulal Mondal, 70, a farmer, points halfway up the tree about two feet off the ground to indicate where the waters came the last time the area flooded.

Monday 6th January

New rules for low carbon heating in Scots homes

New rules are to be introduced to ensure all new homes built in Scotland use renewable or low-carbon heating. The regulations, being introduced by the Scottish government from 2024, are part of plans to cut greenhouse gas emissions. Renewable and low-carbon systems will also be phased in for new non-domestic buildings from 2024.

Tuesday 12th November

Mouse deer species not seen for nearly 30 years is found alive in Vietnam

A distinctly two-tone mouse deer that was feared lost to science has been captured on film foraging for food by camera traps set up in a Vietnamese forest. The pictures of the rabbit-sized animal, also known as the silver-backed chevrotain, are the first to be taken in the wild and come nearly 30 years after the last confirmed sighting.

Wednesday 30th October

Bristol will ban all diesel vehicles from city under new proposal

"Protecting the most vulnerable people from pollution is central to these plans and we have ensured that all impacts have been carefully considered. "If approved, mitigation measures will support those most affected, especially those living in the most deprived communities." The council's cabinet is being asked to approve the Clean Air Zone proposal at a meeting on November 5.

Tuesday 29th October

YouTube stars raise over $6m to plant trees around the world

A group of YouTube stars have raised more than $6m (£4.7m) to plant trees around the world by rallying their huge numbers of subscribers. The American YouTuber Jimmy Donaldson, known as MrBeast, was challenged on Reddit in May to plant 20m trees to celebrate reaching 20 million subscribers on his YouTube channel, where he posts videos of extravagant stunts.

Friday 25th October

Lumber salvaged from Baltimore's houses and trees creates jobs and cuts wood waste

Baltimore, like many post-industrial cities, confronts novel challenges. Once the sixth largest city in the United States, Baltimore's population has contracted by more than a third, resulting from a complex suite of factors including job loss, economic decline and discriminatory policies or housing and lending practices.

Wedneday 23rd October

First 100% electric black cab for 120 years launches in London

The launch of a fully electric black cab for London has been hailed by the mayor for helping clean up the capital's polluted air. The Dynamo, a taxi converted from a Nissan electric van in a Coventry factory, is the first 100% electric taxi on the streets of London since 1899.

Monday 21st October

Renewable energy to expand by 50% in next five years - report

Global supplies of renewable electricity are growing faster than expected and could expand by 50% in the next five years, powered by a resurgence in solar energy. The International Energy Agency (IEA) found that solar, wind and hydropower projects are rolling out at their fastest rate in four years.

John Lewis and Waitrose reveal they will stop selling Christmas crackers with plastic toys inside

The John Lewis Partnership, which includes John Lewis and Waitrose, has announced it will stop selling Christmas crackers containing plastic toys. Instead, the crackers will be filled with toys made from recyclable materials, including metal and paper games.

Thursday 17th October

Fight against Heathrow expansion on verge of victory, says McDonnell

The campaign against the multibillion-pound expansion of Heathrow is on the verge of victory, John McDonnell has claimed, as three court of appeal judges considered fresh legal challenges against a third runway.

Wednesday 16th October

Southwest Atlantic humpbacks recovering

One of the whale populations taken to the edge of extinction by commercial hunting in the early 20th Century has essentially recovered its numbers. It's estimated the humpbacks that frequent the southwest Atlantic once totalled perhaps 27,000 animals.

Friday 11th October

Natural 'bumblebee medicine' found in heather

Preserving heather in the natural landscape could have benefits for wild bees, according to new research. Nectar - and therefore honey - from the plant contains a natural "bumblebee medicine", which is active against a harmful bee parasite. Heather is a major foraging plant for wild bees, which are under pressure from habitat loss, disease and pesticides.

Thursday 10th October

Some corals 'killed' by climate change are now returning to life

Reef-building corals can make unexpected recoveries from climate change-induced destruction. It turns out that some corals only look dead when exposed to unusually warm water. Instead, the coral's polyps shrink and retreat into their hard skeleton, making the reef appear dead, before recolonising the skeleton when conditions are better.

Wednesday 9th October

Greta Thunberg, favourite to win Nobel peace prize, honoured at Standing Rock

Greta Thunberg has been honoured by tribal leaders at Standing Rock in North Dakota, the scene of fierce environmental protests, as the teenage climate activist became odds-on favourite for another garland - the Nobel peace prize.

Adidas by Stella McCartney designs post-mastectomy bra for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Adidas by Stella McCartney has launched the brand's first post-mastectomy sports bra in honour of Breast Cancer Awareness Month to "empower breast cancer survivors to introduce sport and fitness back into their lives."

Is Penzance the UK's most eco-friendly town?

Where businesses cut down on plastic, fishermen collect litter and students march about the climate.

Wednesday 2nd October

TripAdvisor ends ticket sales to attractions that breed captive whales and dolphins

TripAdvisor has announced it will not sell tickets to attractions that breed or import captive whales and dolphins used for public display. The travel site has confirmed the move will affect major attractions that include SeaWorld's theme parks.

Tuesday 1st October

Resale's Rise Stands to Sway Holiday Spending on Secondhand Clothing

Despite the threat of a recession, shoppers are poised to buy this holiday season-and may even spend more than they did last year. However, research shows that their attitudes on what to buy are shifting. On Tuesday, Accenture released its 13th Annual Holiday Shopping Survey, which gleaned insights from 1,500 U.S.

Monday 30th September

Girls and young women call for UK to reduce single-use plastic

Hundreds of thousands of girls and young women are calling for the UK to make a promise to reduce single-use plastic. The call is part of a campaign launched by Girlguiding aimed at tackling plastic pollution.

Thursday 26th September

Greta Thunberg wins 'alternative Nobel Prize'

Greta Thunberg has won Sweden's alternative Nobel Prize - the Right Livelihood Award - for her climate activism. The 16-year-old was recognised "for inspiring and amplifying political demands for urgent climate action reflecting scientific facts".

Swedish newspaper stops taking adverts from fossil fuel firms

A Swedish newspaper has announced it will stop taking advertising that promotes fossil fuel-based goods and services with immediate effect. The editor of the daily Dagens ETC said the decision was "crucial for our credibility". He urged other media outlets to consider doing the same.

Friday 20th September

Labour plans 'NHS forest' of a million trees at hospitals

An "NHS forest" of a million trees would be planted at hospitals across the UK under a Labour government as part of the party's plans for a green revolution. Under proposals due to be outlined at the party's autumn conference, Labour will say it wants to plant the trees at hospitals to battle pollution and counteract the NHS's carbon footprint.

Thursday 12th September

Scientists use IVF procedures to help save near-extinct rhinos

Scientists have successfully created two embryos of the near-extinct northern white rhino in a landmark effort to save the species. The international team of researchers and conservationists drew on IVF procedures to create the embryos from fresh eggs collected from the two remaining female rhinos and frozen sperm from dead males.

Tuesday 10th September

Second-hand fashion hits 187 million pounds on eBay

Ebay has revealed that the UK second-hand fashion market is experiencing a 187 million pound boom as the 'Blue Planet effect' prompts UK consumers to 'close the loop' on fast fashion. UK shoppers spent 187 million pounds on 20 million pre-ow

Monday 9th September

EU electric car sales to pass 1m next year in industry CO2 drive

More than 1m electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles are expected to be sold across Europe next year as carmakers ramp up output to avoid crippling fines under new emissions rules.

Clean Air campaign: Air pollution bill 'will save thousands of lives a year'

Thousands of lives a year would be saved by reducing air pollution to safe levels under draft legislation to be presented to parliament.The Air Pollution Bill would require the government to adopt tighter limits based on World Health Organisation recommendations, a key objective of the Times Clean A

British designer Maddie Williams wins Redress 2019

Edinburgh College of Art graduate Maddie Williams took home First Prize in the Redress Design Award, the world's largest sustainable fashion design competition that aims to put textile waste in the global spotlight by challenging emerging designers to created collections using sustainable and circular design techniques.

Tuesday 3rd September

Climate change: Ireland plans to plant 440m trees by 2040

Twenty-two million trees are to be planted every year in Ireland over the next two decades as part of a plan to tackle climate change, the Government has said. While the Government's climate action plan, published in June, proposed 8,000 hectares - or 19,768 acres - of new forestry every year in a bid to capture carbon emissions, it did not specify the number of trees involved.

Monday 2nd September

Conservationists find more than 130 seals born in 'thriving' Thames

The first Thames seal pup count has revealed more than 130 were born in the river last year. The Zoological Society of London said this was further evidence that the river, biologically dead 50 years ago, had a "thriving ecosystem".

Berlin zoo celebrates rare birth of panda twins

Berlin zoo has said its resident panda Meng Meng has delivered twins, the first time one of the endangered animals has given birth in the country. "Meng Meng became a mom - twice! We are so happy, we are speechless," the zoo tweeted on Monday, posting a video of Meng Meng guiding one of her pink cubs to feed.

Wednesday 28th August

Greta Thunberg, Climate Activist, Arrives in N.Y. With a Message for Trump

The Swedish 16-year-old sailed across the Atlantic on an emissions-free yacht to speak at the U.N. Climate Action Summit next month. [What you need to know to start the day: Get New York Today in your inbox .] Her protests on Fridays demanding action on climate change have inspired children to demonstrate in some 100 cities.

Tuesday 27th August

Vast pumice raft offers new life for Great Barrier Reef

A raft of floating volcanic rock the size of Manhattan could bring new life to the severely damaged Great Barrier Reef, according to experts.The light and porous pumice will pick up marine organisms including corals and crabs as it makes a 2,000-mile odyssey to the world's largest reef system off Au

Leonardo DiCaprio gives $5m for Amazon rainforest

Leonardo DiCaprio's environmental organisation is putting $5m (£4.1m) towards helping the Amazon rainforest after the recent surge in fires there. Earth Alliance will give the money to local groups and indigenous communities as they work to protect the Amazon. The National Institute for Space Research in Brazil says there have been more than 72,000 fires in the Amazon rainforest this year.

Monday 26th August

Cuba drastically reforms fishing laws to protect coral reef, sharks and rays

Cuba 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, despite Donald Trump's policy of reversing a thaw in relations.

Underground line to heat up London homes during winter

The sweltering temperatures on the tube's Northern line will soon begin keeping homes in Islington, north London, cosy through the colder months, under a scheme to harness the heat from the underground. By the end of the year the project will pipe heat from the underground into hundreds of homes and businesses that are part of a heating scheme in the borough.

Sunday 25th August

Recycled seal model highlights plastic beach waste

A life-size sculpture of a seal and her pup has been created out of rubbish cleared from a beach over six months. It has been made by a local artist for the Essex Wildlife Trust from discarded plastic items picked off a beach at Walton-on-the-Naze.

Thursday 22nd August

Tesco promises to ban brands that use excessive packaging

Tesco has pledged to step up its efforts in the battle against single-use plastic with measures that include banning brands using excessive packaging from Britain's largest supermarket chain. Dave Lewis, Tesco's chief executive, said the company would "reserve the right not to list" products with too much non-recyclable packaging from next year onwards, in an article published on

Tuesday 20th August

Peru Passes 'Momentous' Ban on Palm Oil Deforestation

Writer and Editor | Newcastle, Australia | Contactable via: Peru has committed to ending palm oil-driven deforestation by 2021. The National Wildlife Federation named the move a "momentous win" for wildlife and sustainable agriculture. If Peru carries out its commitment, it will be the second South American country after Colombia to pledge to produce palm oil without deforestation.

Monday 19th August

Dutch take cycling to a new level, with world's biggest multistorey bike park

In a nation with more bikes than people, finding a space to park can be a problem. The Dutch city of Utrecht is unveiling an answer at its railway station on Monday morning: the world's largest multistorey parking area for bicycles.

This bike is made from recycled coffee pods

Nespresso has partnered with Swedish cycling start-up Vélosophy to create 1,000 bicycles in the same shade as their popular 'Arpeggio' coffee pods Over the past two decades, Nespresso coffee machines have gone from relative obscurity to household obsession. And while the coffee has been great for family kitchens, the by-product of a used capsule has not been as good for our environment.

Friday 16th August

11 million new trees to be planted in England by water companies

Water companies have announced plans to plant 11 million new trees in England by 2030 to help the industry's effort to become carbon neutral. The firms will be planting trees on around 15,000 acres of land across England, as well as supporting work to restore original woodland and improving habitats that store carbon.

Thursday 15th August

Domesticity and dignity designed into London homeless shelter by Holland Harvey

Holland Harvey Architects is behind the redevelopment of a disused supermarket in London into a new homeless shelter and headquarters for charity Shelter From The Storm (SFTS). As well as room for 42 people to sleep, eat and recover, the new location o...

Wednesday 14th August

Why tiny Belize is a world leader in protecting the ocean | Jo Griffin

Across the turquoise water by the mangrove, forest ranger Allan Halliday spots a fishing skiff. "We're going over to say hello," he says, before abruptly changing the boat's direction. But his real task is to check the couple on board have the licence to fish in this part of the Port Honduras Marine Reserve, one of nine designated zones in Belize.

Monday 12th August

Sustainability rules at Copenhagen Fashion Week S/S 2020

Sustainability has long been part of the conversation in the Danish capital, thanks in part to the seaside proximity of the city, but this season it was the hottest topic: Stine Goya evolving its ethically-produced eveningwear, now retailing on NAP's N...

Chloe Baines makes fashion collection from tents left behind at festivals

London College of Fashion graduate Chloe Baines has designed a collection of clothing and jewellery from the upcycled tents and metal pegs left after music festivals. The collection, called In Tents: The After Party, was designed in collaboration with Central Saint Martins graduate Belle Smith, who made matching earrings and rings from the tent pegs.

Sunday 11th August

Family saves a tonne of plastic from landfill

A family has saved a tonne of plastic from ending up in landfill by collecting it on their driveway before sending it to be recycled. The Barker family from Nuneaton launched into action in January after spotting a pristine 40-year-old crisp packet at their allotment.

'Greta effect' leads to boom in children's environmental books

Some seek to convey the wonder of endangered animals while others give tips on how to tackle waste or tell tales of inspirational environmental activists. All are part of what children's publishers are calling "the Greta Thunberg effect": a boom in books aimed at empowering young people to save the planet.

Friday 9th August

Wellness brand Haeckels plants the seeds of change with zero-impact packaging

Sustainability is moving to the forefront of most businesses' modus operandi these days, but can any truly claim that what they do does no harm? The cosmetic industries are certainly aware that both economic and environmental survival now depends on th...

New project aims to prevent fish dying of stress

Archant 2019 The Environment Agency (EA) is beaming live temperature data to a screen at a Wroxham angling shop to protect pike stocks during the hot weather. The Environment Agency beam live temperature date a to the Wroxham branch of Angling Direct to show the optimal times to fish for Pike on the Broads.

Thursday 8th August

Plant-based diet can fight climate change - UN

Switching to a plant-based diet can help fight climate change, UN experts have said. A major report on land use and climate change says the West's high consumption of meat and dairy produce is fuelling global warming. But scientists and officials stopped short of explicitly calling on everyone to become vegan or vegetarian.

Tuesday 6th August

Warm weather may make 2019 a boom year for butterflies, say experts

The common blue butterfly could be booming in the UK thanks to recent spells of hot weather, according to a conservation charity. Experts are predicting that the July heatwave and Met Office forecasts for above-average temperatures in August might mean that the common blue has its "best ever summer", Butterfly Conservation said.

ITV commits to 1.5C science-based target after reaching carbon-neutral

IU Energy is a multi-award-winning business, providing comprehensive energy management services to its B2B clients, including energy reduction solutions, renewables and independent energy procurement.

Sunday 4th August

The sea eagle has landed - centuries after it disappeared

Sea eagles have returned to the Isle of Wight 239 years after they were last seen there. Six chicks brought from Scotland were taken to the island last month as part of a programme to reintroduce the birds to England's south coast.

Friday 2nd August

Bearded vultures soar again in Alps after breeding scheme

This summer, as the snows finally melt across the Alps, a record 35 bearded vulture chicks are expected to leave their nests and take to the skies to patrol their mountain home, in one of the most successful wildlife comebacks of recent times. "Bearded vultures were hunted to extinction in the Alps in the early 20th century.

Thursday 1st August

Plastic bag sales in England halved in past year

Plastic bags sales by the biggest supermarkets in England have halved in the last year, government data shows. Asda, Marks and Spencer, Morrisons, Sainsbury's, the Co-op, Tesco and Waitrose sold 549 million single-use plastic bags in 2018-19, down from one billion in the previous year.

Wednesday 31st July

M&S launches discount for customers who bring their own lunchbox

Marks and Spencer have launched a discount for customers who bring their own lunchboxes into stores. The new scheme will incentivise customers to bring their own reusable containers to M&S' Market Place by offering a 25p discount off each meal.

Mini toiletries to be removed from Holiday Inn owner's hotels

Miniature toiletries are to be removed from all hotels run by InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) for environmental reasons - making it the first global hotel brand to undertake such a move. The UK-based owner of Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza hotels has pledged to take the small plastic bottles out of its 843,000 rooms by 2021.

Monday 29th July

India tiger census shows rapid population growth

India is now home to nearly 3,000 tigers, a third more than it had four years ago, according to the latest tiger census. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who presented the findings on Monday, said the tiger population had risen from 2,226 in 2014 to 2,967 in 2018.

Greta Thunberg to sail across Atlantic for UN climate summits

Greta Thunberg is to sail across the Atlantic in a high-speed racing yacht next month to attend UN climate summits in the US and Chile as part of a sabbatical year the 16-year-old Swedish climate activist will spend in the US. "Good news!

Ethiopia plants 350m trees in a day to help tackle climate crisis

About 350m trees have been planted in a single day in Ethiopia, according to a government minister. The planting is part of a national "green legacy " initiative to grow 4bn trees in the country this summer by encouraging every citizen to plant at least 40 seedlings.

Thursday 25th July

Intimates Gets a Boost from New Sustainable Fibers and Fabrics

As brands and consumers become more demanding about the clothes they make and wear meeting sustainable and environmental standards, fabric and fiber suppliers are stepping up to the task. Whether using recycled materials or a manufacturing process that conserves water and energy, material suppliers are moving sustainability into the intimates space.

Tuesday 23rd July

77% Of People Want To Learn How To Live More Sustainably

A significant majority of Americans and Australians are intent on learning more about humanity's impact on the environment, and what they can do to live a more sustainable lifestyle. 913 people in both countries were part of a cross-generational led by Southern Cross University to investigate how engaged citizens in both nations were regarding the environment, and just how far they were willing to go to protect the planet.

Ellen MacArthur Foundation Promotes Circularity Through New Education Hub

Less than a week after releasing a set of Jeans Redesign Guidelines, the Ellen MacArthur Foundation launched a learning hub to educate those who want to build a closed loop supply chain. Using interactive multimedia content and real-world examples, the hub answers commonly asked questions about the concept of a circular economy and how individuals can contribute to its adoption and expansion.

Berlin fashion scene breaking barriers in sustainability

Sustainable fashion is having a moment. With increasing interest from conventional retailers, the topic is becoming less of a niche and more of a mainstream industry focus, as proved by Berlin's fashion fairs at the start of July. A colorful

MPs launch sustainable clothing and textiles group

An all-new All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) has been formed by UK MPs to analyse sustainability in the clothing and textiles industry. Headed by newly elected chair Anne Main MP, the APPG for Sustainable Clothing and Textiles, supported by sustainability charity Hubbub, launched with an augural meeting that was attended by dozens of major retailers, industry bodies and recycling experts.

Sunday 21st July

Panama Becomes First Central American Nation To Ban Plastic Bags

PANAMA CITY, July 20 (Reuters) - Panama on Saturday became the first Central American nation to ban single-use plastic bags to try to curb pollution on its beaches and help tackle what the United Nations has identified as one of the world's biggest environmental challenges.

Thursday 18th July

Use of #SustainableFashion Hashtag Spiking on Instagram

Forget trends; consumers are increasingly values-driven when buying clothes. The evidence is all over Instagram, where mentions of #sustainablefashion have quintupled since 2016, according to French tech startup Heuritech, which reviewed 25 million posts and 400 hashtags from U.S. and European consumers and influencers over the past three years.

Wednesday 17th July

'No brainer' fuel change to cut transport CO2

Adding more ethanol to the UK's fuel mix would cut carbon by as much as taking 700,000 cars off the roads, according to a group of MPs. The All-Party Parliamentary Group for British Bioethanol says the swift introduction of E10 fuel would also help the £1bn British biofuel industry.

Tuesday 16th July

Bears and wolves to coexist in UK woods for first time in 1,000 years

For the first time in more than 1,000 years native bears and wolves are coming snout to muzzle with each other among towering oaks and ashes in a slice of British woodland.

Virgin axes trips to SeaWorld amid welfare worries

Virgin Holidays says it has stopped selling tickets to captive whale and dolphin experiences such as SeaWorld. The firm said it had culled the last five such attractions it promoted, which accounted for more than 20,000 tickets sold last year.

Friday 12th July

GM plants could help tackle root cause of global warming

Genetically modified plants with artificially enlarged root systems could be used to combat climate change, scientists have said.Plants remove carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, from the atmosphere to produce energy through photosynthesis. Using sunlight they split CO2 into oxygen, which is releas

Monday 8th July

Children Rising: Meet The Earth's Future Custodians

Imagine a detection system that can prevent underground water leakage, a turbine that could harness hurricane-strength wind power in urban spaces, a technology that captures carbon from the home, or a sustainable train that doesn't use a diesel engine or a heavy electric motor. These inventions were designed by children aged 12-14.

Glastonbury stars give away clothes for charity

Sheryl Crow, Lewis Capaldi and Billie Eilish are among the Glastonbury stars to give clothes to Oxfam in support of a campaign against "throwaway fashion". The artists gave some of their clothing to the charity during the festival in Somerset, with the aim of encouraging fans to buy second-hand fashion.

The Uplifting News