A-List pop stars join forces to create a climate change hit, OCBC rules out funding new coal power plants, and H&M sets the new standard for fashion transparency for major fashion retailers? This week’s eco-news comin’ in hot.
1. Lil Dicky together with Leonardo DiCaprio, Sia, Ariana Grande, Justin Bieber, Snoop Dogg, Miley Cyrus and a number of other celebrities on Earth Day to drop ‘Earth’.
Have you ever seen a more epic pop song? Each celebrity appears as an animal or plant of some sort, championing the environmental movement, and issues like the California wildfires, global warming are featured and the music video also imagines a polluted, trash-filled future. A portion of the proceeds will go to the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, which endeavours to protect threatened ecosystems and wildlife communities around the world. It’s gone viral – amassing over 36 million views since its release on 18th April.
2. OCBC is Southeast Asia’s first bank to rule out funding new coal plants.
It’s no secret that banks have a role to play in worsening the climate crisis. They have been, and are continuing to, fund coal plants. But it seems like Southeast Asian banks have finally gotten the climate change memo – CEO Samuel Tsien declares they’ll stop funding new coal-fired power plants, and two days later, rival bank DBS followed suit. Meanwhile, OCBC has been putting their money into renewable energy, seeing the area as increasingly profitable.
3. H&M is the first major fashion retailer to bring product transparency to scale.
The global fast fashion giant has been taking serious strides towards a more sustainable future – with their most recent drop of the ninth Conscious Collection, and now this. For each of their garments, online shoppers will now be able to see details like the production country, supplier names, factory names and addresses as well as the number of workers in the factories. Shoppers can also find out more about the materials used to make a specific garment, to make more informed fashion choices.
4. A Stanford study finds that climate change widens the economic gap between the rich and poor.
It’s not just capitalism that’s making the rich richer and poor poorer. Climate change worsens that too – apparently, the economic gap between the richest and poorest nations is now 25% larger than it would have been without anthropogenic climate change. Though it’s not the first time we’ve heard about poorer countries being worse off, it’s surprising to actually have the facts, and have them point to the reality that richer countries are actually benefiting from global warming. Notably, Norway, Canada, and Russia are seeing GDP boosts from the global tragedy.
5. Etihad Airways is the first major airline to make a long haul flight sans single-use plastics on board.
The Abu-Dhabi-based airline recently revealed that it uses some 27 million single-use plastic coffee cup lids every year. On Earth Day, they decided to take matters into their own hands and say no to single-use plastics in the air. To achieve this, it replaced no less than 95 different single-use plastic items. But some have remained skeptical – Julian Kirby, a lead campaigner on plastics for Friends of the Earth, said that while plastic reduction by big businesses should be welcomed, there should be greater efforts made, such as investing into renewable energy, or cutting luxurious onboard products.
Image credit: Greenpeace