Greta Thunberg, the schoolgirl climate change warrior is asking students all over the world to walk out of lessons on 15 March. Norway recycles 97% of all plastic bottles they use. And Trader Joe’s is cutting 1m pounds of single-use plastic? This week’s sustainability news comin’ in hot.
1. Global school climate strikes on 15 March.
Once upon a time, Greta Thunberg was a lonesome nobody who sat outside the Swedish parliament building, holding a hand-painted sign, depressed about climate change. Eight months on, politicians all over the world are lining up to be criticised by her, and students from 60 countries (and counting) are planning to strike this Friday for the global climate crisis.
2. Norway recycles 97% of the plastic bottles they use?
You heard right. “92 per cent of the bottles recycled yield such high-quality material, it can be used again in drink bottles. In some cases, the system has already reused the same material more than 50 times.” How are they doing it? Money. Norway uses a loan scheme – when a consumer buys a plastic bottle, they are charged a small additional fee equivalent to about 13 to 30 US cents. This fee can be returned for a deposit, or to small shops and gas stations for cash or store credit. “We want to get to the point where people realise they are buying the product but just borrowing the packaging,” Kjell Olav Maldum, the CEO of Infinitum, told The Guardian.
3. Steve Harvey is vegan (because of Beyonce!)
Beyonce has demonstrated her commitment to the plant-based movement by offering a lifetime of concert tickets to fans who go vegan (in an online competition still ongoing). And it looks like she’s just converted TV host Steve Havey, too. “Let me tell you something. I’ve been doing this since January 4, I gotta tell you, I do feel a lot better,” said Harvey.
4. Trader Joe’s plans to cut 1m pounds of single-use plastic from its stores.
The move comes following online Greenpeace petition that started late last year, that 91,000 people signed. The grocer announced last year that it was banning single-use plastic bags, and now they’re reducing how much produce they sell in plastic packaging, replacing Styrofoam trays with recyclable ones, eliminating non-recyclable plastic and foil from tea packaging, and more.
5. Costa Rica has a Green New Deal, too.
Most of Costa Rica’s electricity is renewable. The country has doubled its forest cover in the last 30 years, after decades of deforestation. But that’s not enough – Costa Rica wants to wean itself from fossil fuels by 2050, and the chief evangelist of the idea is a 38-year-old urban planner named Claudia Dobles who also happens to be the first lady.
Image credit: Quartz