As you know, Green Santa wants to hear what your wishes are for the planet this Christmas - and he’s asking you to dream big! Green Santa has already received some amazing messages from children all over the UK and Ireland who have dreams for a greener future - including a very exciting idea for butterflies!
It’s not all doom and gloom
The planet faces many environmental challenges and the time to act in many areas is shrinking fast. However, that hasn’t put off people from trying to take action and if you look around you can find success stories to motivate us to do even more.
· Around 48 endangered animal species have been saved from extinction since 1993. A new international study found that between 1993 and 2020, conservation action prevented the extinction of up to 32 types of birds and 16 types of mammals. These results should motivate the world’s governments to save the roughly 6,8100 species currently listed as critically endangered
· Renewable energy projects are now cheaper than fossil fuel options. A series of reports over the past two years have highlighted the exciting potential for renewable energy sources. A cost study from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) found that half of new solar and wind installations were cheaper than fossil fuel options in 2019. The International Energy Agency’s World Energy Outlook 2020 report states that best solar power schemes are cheaper energy sources than available coal and gas options.
· Plan launched to plant one trillion trees by 2030 to limit climate change. Earlier this year, an initiative was launched to support efforts to grow, restore and conserve one trillion trees within the next ten years. A new public platform 1t.org has been set up for people to join the global trillion tree community. Research from Switzerland shows there is enough space on our planet for this ambitious target.
· Dolphins are returning to the rivers around Washington DC in the USA. For several years, people in the USA’s capital city were told to avoid swimming in the local Potomac and Anacostia Rivers. However, after almost 50 years of pollution control, clean-up and restoration efforts, researchers have reported over 1,000 bottlenose dolphins in the rivers.
· Two rare plants saved following the devastating bushfires in Australia. Many plant species often come under threat during the bushfire season, but close cooperation between local agencies, the fire service and landowners in New South Wales saved the Mongarlowe mallee tree, one of the rarest plants in the world, and the endangered small purple-pea herb.
· Rare black leopard spotted in Kenya for the first time in a century. Although there have been rumours of rare black leopards being seen in Africa, until recently no one has been able to prove it. Last year remote cameras confirmed that rare black leopards were indeed living in Laikipia County, Kenya. These are the first confirmed sightings in 100 years.
These represent just a few examples of positive stories that should encourage us to do even more for the environment. Even when the situation is bleak it shows how people can work together to turn things around. So why not send a message to Green Santa today so you can help start a new Christmas tradition to build an even brighter future for the planet?