Good News in Sustainability in 2019

2019 certainly has had its ups and downs. Climate change is rapidly becoming the defining threat of the times, and between the wildfires, the record breaking weather patterns, and the waste crisis, it is easy to become bogged down by all this bad news. But that doesn’t mean there hasn’t been good news for the environment as well. So today we’re going to look at 2019 in review, and go over some of the good things that have happened this year too. Enjoy!

Plastics News

  • New York to Ban Single-Use Plastic
  • Maine Bans Styrofoam
  • 187 Countries Sign Agreement to Reduce Plastic Waste
  • Nigeria Passes a Bill to Ban Single-Use Plastic
  • England to Ban Plastic Straws, Stirrers and Cotton Buds
  • Canada to Ban Single-Use Plastic
  • Costa Rica Bans Styrofoam
  • Panama Bans Single-Use Plastic Bags
  • The Ocean Cleanup Project’s Device Finally Collects Marine Plastic

Renewable Energy News

  • The cost of renewables have fallen dramatically, now cheaper than coal in some areas
  • Chicago commits to 100% clean energy by 2035
  • New York enacts its own Green New Deal
  • Washington State commits to 100% renewable energy by 2045
  • Renewable energy accounted for a record 18.49% of the US’ domestic energy generation during the first 8 months of 2019
  • Britain goes a week without coal power for the first time since the Industrial Revolution
  • Finland Pledges to Become Carbon Neutral by 2035
  • UK’s Goal of Net-Zero Carbon Emissions by 2050 Becomes Law
  • Nobel Prize for Chemistry goes to renewable energy scientists
  • The UK bans fracking
  • New Zealand passes bill to be carbon neutral by 2050

Fashion Sustainable News

  • 150 brands sign Sustainable Fashion Pact unveiled by Marcon at the G7
  • Gucci goes carbon neutral, makes a public challenge for other brands to do the same
  • A sustainable sneakers arms race takes off between Adidas, Everlane, Native Shoes, Reebok, and more
  • Second-Hand fashion company The ReelReel raised $300 million after going public
  • The #30wears anti-fast fashion challenge goes viral
  • Upcycling got big, with designers like Marine Serre and brands like RE/DONE, Rust & Fray, and Triarchy
  • Sustainable fashion becomes one of the biggest trends of NYFW

Protest and Legal News

  • Greta Thunberg’s activism is seen the world over, especially her trip to the UN
  • Ecuador tribe wins major lawsuit against oil companies
  • Torres Strait Islanders file first of its kind human rights abuse against the Australian government over climate change inaction
  • Court rules that Indonesian Government responsible for 2015 forest fires
  • Global Climate Strike September 20th in 150 countries, with 7 million people participating
  • Extinction Rebellion shuts down London for 11 days in September


  • Ethiopia breaks tree planting record, planting 350 Million Trees in 12 hours
  • Indian Tiger population grows rapidly, now home to about 3000 tigers
  • Canada creates new Marine Protection Area
  • Germany announces $60 billion fund to fight climate change
  • Beyond Beat burgers and Impossible Burgers explode in popularity, now available at TGI Fridays, Burger King and White Castle
  • Western South Atlantic Humpback Whales are making a dramatic comeback after near extinction

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