Newsletter – December 2021

positive sustainable news

This is my last newsletter for the year, and the perfect opportunity to say thanks to you for subscribing to it. I hope you find it, and my other articles, uplifting and useful.

I do my best to keep my newsletters as positive as possible and only include negative news if I think it’s momentous enough to merit mentioning. There’s is enough negative environmental press out there and this newsletter is my way of balancing things out with news about all the good things that are happening around the world.

Nothing mentioned in this article has been sponsored. It’s all just my own personal opinion. If you like your sources to remain independent then please;
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Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

I’ve had a flurry of new subscribers over the past two weeks. You’re so very welcome. Please feel free to message me with any personal sustainable living queries. I’ll do my best to answer them. During the week I discovered that the links from the images on the homepage weren’t working, so if that happened to you when you first visited the website, apologies, it’s fixed now!

For those of you who have been on your journey to sustainability for a while now, I’m going to encourage you to carry out a personal stocktake of your sustainable hits and misses in 2021. I find it a wonderful way to track progress that is so easily missed week to week. I’ll be publishing mine in the new year and would love to hear yours.

Taking a wider view I end 2021 heartened to see sustainability moving up the agenda in the minds of the media, the government and individuals. Will it be enough? Hopefully. Is change happening fast enough? Not as fast as I’d like, but change is hard and I’m going to celebrate the fact that at least we’re going in the right direction for now.

And here are some great news items to cheer on in 2022 ……

After five years of pressure from animal rights activists, travel company Expedia will stop selling holiday packages that include performances by captive dolphins and whales

Another Irish wine enters the wine market, this time from Viking Irish Drinks

Dubbed the ‘Amazon of Europe’,a reserve spanning Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Hungary, and Serbia will become the first UNESCO biosphere to cover five different countries.

This is a fabulous little video on how to make a very simple origami seed envelope

Vancouver citizens have made 50% of their journey’s by bike or on foot, five years ahead of time.

What to do with old Clothes (My December Article)

Germany’s new government has announced a new climate protection programme that will bring forward its coal exit by 8 years to 2030.

The demand for leather for the fashion industry has been shown to drive deforestation in the Amazon, and this new report from Slow Factory has mapped the connections to some familiar brands. Help to stop it by signing the petition on the website.

Sit back and enjoy a beautiful video series on Irish native trees by Donegal County Council

China will plant 36,000 km2 of new forest (more than the total area of Belgium) every year until 2025, as well as expanding the national park system, creating wildlife corridors and cracking down further on illegal wildlife trade.

UK energy company EON provides superpowered capes to kids as part of a campaign to highlight air pollution

Let’s Match Mums is a great initiative in Ireland to match mums with stuff to donate with mums in direct provision in need.

Here’s an excellent video by Greenpeace explaining how the climate emergency is racist

An analysis by the media sustainability group Albert found that “cake” was mentioned 10 times as often as “climate change” on UK TV programmes in 2020. “Scotch egg” received double the mentions of “biodiversity”. “Banana bread” beat “wind power” and “solar power” put together.

Currently the carbon footprint of the military are not recorded on a country’s environmental balance sheet, here’s a campaign to include military emissions in the Paris Agreement.

Read all my Christmas related articles here.

Ireland government creates ‘climate jargon busting’ website

Excellent video on how to make your own plastic-free Winter Wreath from garden cuttings

Vodafone launch an online repair service. Yah!

The UK’s policing bill will make climate activism almost illegal

Watch celebrity chefs battle it out with charity chefs as part of an Irish campaign to highlight food waste

Portugal had a goal of ending coal power by 2030, but this month it closed its last coal power station, nine years ahead of schedule.

M&S trials clothing rental in the UK as ASOS launches open-source circular economy guide.

Ikea pledges to eliminate all plastic packaging on its products by 2028.

Artist uses an algorithm to design flower bed for pollinators

An open call for funding of community education and capacity building in Ireland has been launched. Submissions are welcome until Jan 14th,

Bike repair maintenance stations have been installed in 4 locations around Galway City.

Apple has announced a self-service repair program that will offer replacement parts and service manuals to DIYers and repair shops.

Now you have two new Irish apps to help you rehome your kids’ school and sports items sustainably. The school one is called Schooly and the sports one is called Clubby

The newly approved wall in Poland will divide an ancient forest and goes against all European environmental legislation. Help stop it by signing this petition

Scientists in Ireland discover the tap water produces a protective shield against microplastics

study from Simon Fraser University showed that by blocking ads you can reduce data usage by 25-40%, thereby reducing your carbon footprint. (Via Green Stars Project)

Peat exports from Ireland are over 11 times import levels as concerns grow that there is not enough supply for the domestic horticultural sector.

A shortage of HGV drivers in the UK has led to a boost in rail transportation leading to less air pollution. Every cloud …..

Researchers were able to boost health and reduce traffic by gamifying walking and cycling routes


Till next year. In the meantime find me on Facebook or Instagram and if you want to read previous newsletters, just click the link.


Published by Elaine Butler

I am a circular design consultant helping manfacturers prepare for the circular economy

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