April saw us celebrating Earth Day on Thursday 22nd and there are plenty of positive news pieces we can highlight this month. Follow the links in each story for a more in-depth look into each one.
Biden pledges to cut US emissions in half
US President Joe Biden kicked of a two-day virtual Earth Day Summit with a pledge to halve US emissions by the end of the decade. This is a commitment he hopes will spur China and other big polluters to speed up efforts of their own.
“Time is short, but I believe we can do this,” Biden said in his opening remarks. “We will do this.”
UK to raise climate ambitions
Following recommendations made by the Climate Change Committee last year, the UK government has announced that carbon dioxide emissions are to be cut by 78% by 2035 compared with 1990 levels. This is an increase from the previous target of a 68% reduction by 2030.
It is hoped that this move will spur on other countries to follow the UK’s lead ahead of the COP26 Climate Conference due to be held in Glasgow at the end of the year.
This announcement comes as a report by the non-profit group Green New Deal UK finds that a stimulus programme that focusses on green and digital infrastructure, research and development, energy and care work could create more than 2.7m jobs in the next 10 years.
This report indicated that such a strategy could mean that every job that was lost during the coronavirus pandemic could be replaced in the upcoming recovery years.
Solar Pavement installed in Barcelona
Spains’ first photovoltaic pavement has been installed in Barcelona this month as part of a drive for the city to become carbon neutral by 2050.
The new solar power pavement is made up of 50 sq metres of non-slip panels, which will generate 7,560kWh every year. This is enough to supply three households.
While this doesn’t sound like a lot, it’s a great step forward (pun intended) to being able to show the viability of rolling this initiative out further and scale up ambition in the future.
What do you think of April’s positive news stories? Have you seen any others that have made you feel optimistic this month? Let me know!