The image of the health of the global ecosystem may sometimes not seem to be very encouraging. However, the good news is that people all across the globe are joining together to create remarkable campaigns, political movements, technological advancements, and natural remedies to address climate change. Here are 5 notable things that are happening to help us get there.
Ozone Is Restoring
Scientists got the first encouraging news on this front in 2014. They discovered the first minor increases in stratospheric ozone in more than two decades, as well as indications that ODCs had dropped by 10–15 percent in the stratosphere.
Despite this, they maintained their caution. Approximately two years later, scientists had gathered sufficient evidence to safely declare that the ozone layer was really on the mend.
An observation made by scientists in a 2016 study, which tracked the evolution of the size of the ozone hole over Antarctica, was that stratospheric ozone concentrations were continuing to rise, whereas the size of the ozone hole had shrunk by half the size between 2000 and 2015.
Furthermore, the study's authors predicted that the ozone layer would be completely repaired between 2040 and 2070, based on their research.
Leaded Gasoline Is Not Used Anymore
On August 30, the United Nations (UN) declared that Algeria's remaining stockpiles of leaded gasoline would be formally depleted in July 2021, marking the official end of the use of leaded gasoline in automobiles across the world.
In the US, the Environmental Protection Agency began a phase-out of leaded gasoline in 1973, and the process is still ongoing. As early as the 1970s, new automobiles were being developed to operate on unleaded gasoline. In fact, the newer, cleaner generation of automobiles could not be operated on leaded gasoline because it would cause their catalytic converters to fail.
However, leaded gasoline was still in regular use in most of the developing world around the turn of the century, particularly in Africa. The UNEP began a campaign in 2002 to collaborate with governments and industry to phase out leaded gasoline worldwide.
Leaded gasoline, at least as a legal fuel for streetcars, has been phased out more than a century after it was first manufactured and more than 50 years after its risks were discovered.
Plastic Garbage is Being Removed From the Ocean
Massive cleaning efforts, along with novel upcycling techniques, have resulted in an unprecedented quantity of plastic being collected from the world's seas to this point.
The world's largest accumulation of ocean plastic is located between Hawaii and California. In July 2020, a crew completed a 48-day expedition and successfully removed a record-breaking amount of plastic from the patch.
By combining today's technology with a collaborative effort to make more environmentally friendly decisions, we can all work together to benefit our ocean's inhabitants.
Energy Production Is Becoming More Environmentally Friendly
Despite the fact that our world is getting more energy-dependent as life gets increasingly digitalized, our methods of creating energy are becoming cleaner. There is, of course, one key reason for this: renewable energy systems.
As we learn to harness the power of the sun, wind, and water, our reliance on finite and polluting energy sources decreases year by year. Renewable energies accounted for 25% of total world energy output in 2017, and this figure is expected to rise to 85% by 2050.
Traditional "dirty" energy generation, on the other hand, has grown cleaner as well. For example, by cleaning up hazardous coal power plants, we've been able to lessen water, air, and land pollution.
With fantastic technology like nuclear fusion on the horizon, it's no wonder that we anticipate a brighter, cleaner future. Only a few nuclear fusion reactors would be required to possibly power whole continents.
While nuclear fusion would be a great achievement, it is not the be-all and end-all. Many additional new energy production options are being investigated and developed, and it is only a matter of time until mankind solves the code on endless, clean power generation.
Recycling is Reducing Pollution
As recycling technology advances, we will be able to recycle and reuse a greater proportion of our garbage more efficiently.
Humans may be able to develop a closed-loop system that is 100 percent recyclable in the future if we recycle the vast majority of the materials we use now.
When we recycle plastic, we lessen the need for new plastic to be produced. This helps the environment. By recycling paper, we may contribute to the reduction of deforestation and the preservation of trees from being chopped down. Separating cans and other metals helps to reduce the environmental damage caused by mining as well as our increasing need for raw resources.
By reducing the number of new materials and natural resources that we need to extract from the earth, whether through farming, mining, logging, or other means, we can protect vulnerable ecosystems and wildlife from harm or extinction, allowing them to continue to exist for future generations to benefit from our efforts.
Additionally, recycling materials send far fewer greenhouse emissions into the atmosphere than original manufacturing does.