Review of good environmental news
To combat ecoanxiety, it’s important to read good news. Here is a selection of good environmental news from around the world for August 2023.
- Held v. Montana
16 young Americans won their case at a trial in Montana on August 14, 2023. They argued that the State of Montana was violating their constitutional rights (to a clean and healthy environnement, to seek safety, health, and happiness, and to individual dignity and equal protection of the law) by supporting an energy system based on fossil fuels. While this ruling by Judge Kathy Seeley doesn’t oblige the state to reduce its climate impact, it does free up speech around climate change.
- Yasuni, Ecuador
In Ecuador, a referendum approves a shutdown of an oil field in the Yasuni Amazon reserve. Results published on Monday August 21 revealed that 59% of Ecuadorians voted in favor of cutting oil production in Block 43, an important oilfield in the Yasuni Amazon reserve in the east of the country. National oil company Petroecuador claimed in a statement on Monday that it would abide by the “sovereign decision” of the Ecuadorians. The government predicted financial losses of $16.47 billion over twenty years if the block were revoked.
- Anti-oil-spill operation
The UN confirmed on Friday August 11 that over a million barrels of oil had been removed from a 47-year-old vessel abandoned off the Yemen coast. The vessel had not been serviced in 8 years and could explode at any moment. “There is still work to be done, but today we can say with confidence that the immediate threat of a spill has been averted,” said Achim Steiner, UNDP Administrator. The ship remains a threat to the environment. The next step will be to clean the tanks and prepare the vessel for towing and demolition.