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Nigeria: Expert advises Plateau farmers to adopt organic farming to protect soil, improve yield
17 September 2021 - The Plateau Agricultural Development Programme (PADP) has advised farmers to adopt organic farming practices to protect soil and improve yield. The PADP equally said inorganic (use of chemicals) farming practices in vogue have adverse effects on the soil and the environment generally. (more)

6th generation Wisconsin farm goes back to its roots, spurred by harm caused by pesticides (+TMJ4 video)
17 September 2021 - A sixth generation farm is going back to its roots. We [TMJ4] went to visit the Evansville, Wisconsin family's nearly 120-year history, and why they changed to a certified organic farm. The farm is called Doudlah Farms Organics. Doudlah Farms Organics sells seeds, beans, honey, flour and more to Outpost Natural Foods. (more)

Canada: More and more farmers converting to organic with the help of the Support Organic Change Fund
17 September 2021 - With a booming $8.138 billion in annual sales, Canada is the sixth largest organic market in the world. Yet, despite double digit production growth, demand continuously outpaces supply in Canada. Two thirds of Canadians purchase organic products weekly, and organic is the fastest growing part of the Canadian agriculture landscape. As a response to mounting domestic and international demand, the Canada Organic Trade Association (COTA) launched the Organic Conversion Support Program in 2019, through the Support Organic Change Fund, to support farms and livestock producers as they convert their operations to certified organic to meet this global demand. (more)

Blowers, mowers, and more: American yards quietly go electric
16 September 2021 - There's a quiet transformation going on in yards across the country. Longstanding complaints about the roar and fumes from gas-powered leaf blowers, mowers, and other equipment have grown even louder as more people work from home because of the pandemic. Meanwhile, the quality of zero- to low-emissions electric landscaping equipment has improved markedly, with battery packs that last longer. (more)

Kew Gardens: Royal Botanic Gardens breaks record for largest plant collection
16 September 2021 - Kew Gardens has set a new record for the largest living plant collection at a single site, according to Guinness World Records. Established in 1759, the Royal Botanic Gardens (RBG) at Kew had 16,900 unique plant species as of May 2019. 'It re-enforces the importance of botanic gardens around the world, as not only beautiful places to enjoy, but as essential hubs of inspiration and education,' said Richard Barley, director of horticulture at the gardens. (more)

US: Ospreys, still threatened in Illinois, are making a comeback
16 September 2021 - After essentially disappearing from Illinois, the osprey is making a comeback thanks to a decades-long effort to eliminate harmful pesticides and provide safe places for the large, slender hawks to nest. (more)

New York passes law that will ban all gas-powered car sales by 2035
15 September 2021 - In 14 years' time, no fossil fuel-powered vehicles will be sold in New York anymore. The state has passed a new law that bans the sale of gas vehicles starting in 2035, requiring all new cars to be zero emission. New York's Senate and Assembly passed the bill and Governor Kathy Hochul signed it into law last week. The move will help reduce the state's greenhouse gas emissions by 35 percent and help it achieve its climate targets, including an 85 reduction in GHG emissions by 2050. (more)

General Motors to invest $50M in Detroit education, jobs, neighborhoods
14 September 2021 - General Motors plans to invest $50 million by 2025 to help improve access to education in Detroit, employment opportunities and city neighborhoods. The automaker said Tuesday [14 September] that it is working with the city on the initiative and that the funding will go through Detroit-based nonprofits. (more)

US: Pulitzer Prize winner launching literacy program in Iowa
14 September 2021 - A Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist known for her writing on race is joining with educators in Iowa to launch a free community-based after-school literacy program in her hometown. Nikole Hannah-Jones said the 1619 Freedom School will hold a soft launch in October at the Dr. Walter Cunningham School for Excellence with a small number of students before opening the full program in January at the Masonic Temple in downtown Waterloo, the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reported. (more)

Britain's Tesco joins refillable revolution with in-store trial
13 September 2021 - Britain's biggest supermarket group Tesco launched a trial on Monday [13 September] that allows customers to buy food, drink, household and beauty products in reusable packaging, part of its strategy to cut plastic waste. Britons have become increasingly aware of the amount of plastic they use in recent years, with television documentaries such as naturalist David Attenborough's 'Blue Planet II' particularly highlighting the dangers of plastic pollution to marine life. (more)

Tesco zero-waste trial launches at 10 stores in England
13 September 2021 - Supermarket chain Tesco is to trial its zero-waste shopping service at 10 stores in the East of England. Customers will be able to buy common household goods in reusable packaging that can be returned to the store to be used again. The trial aims to meet demand for less single-use plastic packaging. (more)

US: Kansas targets early literacy with $15M in pandemic funds
13 September 2021 - Kansas is setting aside $15 million in federal pandemic funds to improve early literacy, state education officials said. Kansas Commissioner of Education Randy Watson said Wednesday that early literacy is critical to long-term academic success. (more)

Harvard University to end investment in fossil fuels
12 September 2021 - Harvard University is ending its investments in fossil fuels, the school's President said on Thursday [9 September], drawing praise from divestment activists who had long pressed the leading university to exit such holdings. (more)

US: California may impose toughest rules on recycling labels
12 September 2021 - California lawmakers have approved what advocacy groups say are the nation's strongest protections against falsely labeling items as recyclable when they in fact are destined for landfills. The measure sent late Thursday [9 September] to Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom for his consideration would reserve the 'chasing arrows' recycling symbol for items that actually can be recycled. (more)

Hubble captures a sparkling cluster
11 September 2021 - [A] star-studded image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope depicts NGC 6717, which lies more than 20,000 light-years from Earth in the constellation Sagittarius. NGC 6717 is a globular cluster, a roughly spherical collection of stars tightly bound together by gravity. Globular clusters contain more stars in their centers than their outer fringes, as [the] image aptly demonstrates. (more)

Jordan: Agriculture Ministry prepares ground for organic farming
10 September 2021 - Organic farming is making inroads into Jordan's conventional agriculture system as many are encouraged to adopt environmentally friendly cultivation methods. 'Organic agriculture produces high quality products that meet international standards. It has a positive impact on human health and the environment,' according to the Jordan Organic Agriculture Association website. (more)

US: Two life-changing events led an Illinois family to embrace organic farming
10 September 2021 - Harold Wilken is a steadfast believer in letting nature take its course. Under his watch, Janie's Farm Organics in Danforth, Illinois, has transitioned from conventional farming practices -- such as the use of pesticides and GMOs -- into a 100 percent organic operation growing yellow and white hybrid corn, soybeans, wheat, and rye, and he couldn't be prouder. Raised in a farming family that dates back several generations, Wilken was riding tractors with his dad at the tender age of 2 years old. (more)

Harvard University will divest its $42bn endowment from all fossil fuels
10 September 2021 - Harvard will divest itself from holdings in fossil fuels, the university's president, Lawrence Bacow, announced late on Thursday [9 September]. Harvard Management Company, which oversees the university's vast endowment of almost $42bn, has already been reducing its financial exposure to fossil fuels and has no direct investments in companies that explore for or develop further reserves of fossil fuels, Bacow said in a message posted on the university's website. (more)

Harvard University will divest itself from fossil fuels
10 September 2021 - Harvard University will divest itself from holdings in fossil fuels, President Lawrence Bacow said Thursday [9 September]. Harvard Management Company, which oversees the university's nearly $42 billion endowment, has already been reducing its exposure to fossil fuels and has no direct investments in companies that explore for or develop further reserves of fossil fuels, Bacow said in a message posted on the university's website. (more)

New York sets 2035 zero-emission passenger car goal
10 September 2021 - New York Governor Kathy Hochul on Wednesday [8 September] signed into law a bill that sets a goal for all new passenger cars and light-duty trucks to be zero-emission models by 2035, joining the state of California in attempting to eliminate gasoline-powered vehicles. (more)

India: Organic farming - women craft 'vegetable revolution' on land left uncultivated for years
9 September 2021 - By using scientific organic farming techniques, a group of women from Cheruvattoor Potta region of Kottakkakom, which comes under Parassala Krishi Bhavan, has crafted 'vegetable revolution'. The group named Karunya headed by Joilett Ruby has been successful in actualizing Kerala government's project for converting uncultivated lands to agricultural lands. 'We are receiving all support and cooperation of officials in the agriculture department,' says Joilett while sharing her happiness about the about the success. (more)

Mexico City taps solar energy to clean up historic Aztec-era canals
9 September 2021 - Mexican scientists have developed a unique 'nanobubble' system using solar energy to improve water quality in the canals of Mexico City's Xochimilco ecological zone, a popular tourist attraction. Officials in Mexico City have been focused on cleaning up the long-polluted waters of Xochimilco, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. A team of researchers from the Center for Research and Advanced Studies (Cinvestav) has developed a method using solar energy to activate a pump that sends cleansing 'nanobubbles' into the water. (more)

Report: Solar could power 40 percent of US electricity by 2035
8 September 2021 - Solar energy has the potential to supply up to 40 percent of the nation's electricity within 15 years -- a 10-fold increase over current solar output, but one that would require massive changes in U.S. policy and billions of dollars in federal investment to modernize the nation's electric grid, a new federal report says. (more)

Solar energy can account for 40 percent of U.S. electricity by 2035 - DOE
8 September 2021 - The Biden administration on Wednesday [8 Septermber] released a report showing the United States can get 40 percent of its electricity from solar energy by 2035, a significant jump. The report lays out several steps the United States should take to achieve the 40 percent target, including installing 30 gigawatts per year of solar capacity between now and 2025 and 60 GW a year between 2025 and 2030. (more)

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