Today’s Solutions: August 19, 2022

Environment

Need some good news about the environment? The Optimist Daily is your go-to herald of positive environmental news, highlighting eco-friendly solutions and scientific progress around climate action, circularity, conservation, and more. Learn about everything eco in our Environment section.

Pocket Gophers

Pocket gophers: the only other mammal that farms

Farming has been an integral part of the long story of the development of human society. Some mark the beginning of agriculture in the Fertile Crescent in 8500 BC as the start of human civilization. It’s with this in mind that we think of farming as an entirely human job, but that’s not true. Read More...

Waterways protein

Eating less meat could help oceans and waterways by reducing nitrogen

It’s difficult for us to consider the long-term, downriver consequences of the simplest of our actions. It isn’t because we’re indifferent, it’s because there are several, complicated results to everything we do.  Take eating too much meat. When our bodies have more protein than they Read More...

Agricultural field, which is ready for harvest ripe corn.

How aspirin and crop resilience go hand in hand

Did you know that plants have been making aspirin for millions of years? And humans have been using it as far back as Neanderthal times for self-medication? The pain medication can be found in trees and sunflowers alike in an unprocessed form called salicylic acid, created in response to when a Read More...

Mosquito

Researchers identify three factors to help prevent mosquito-spread disease

With the variabled future of weather in an ever-changing climate, the prevalence of mosquitoes is expected to increase or at least become more unpredictable. This is expected to exacerbate the spread of certain diseases, like malaria and dengue fever. In places like Sri Lanka, this represents a top Read More...

Farmer planting young seedlings of lettuce salad in the vegetable garden

7 money-saving tips for new gardeners

It’s finally happened—after reading countless articles about the benefits (for both yourself and the planet) of growing your own food and spending time in nature, you’ve decided to give gardening a go. But you’ve heard from others that creating a new garden can be quite costly, and you’d Read More...

Squirrel

UK scientists plan to use contraceptives to curb invasive gray squirrels

In the late 19th century, gray squirrels were introduced to the United Kingdom from the United States. Since then, the gray squirrel population has exploded in the UK to the detriment of the county’s woodlands. These squirrels strip the bark of trees to get at the sap beneath, and British forests Read More...

Vinegar and Baking soda

3 sustainable cleaning products you can make yourself

Even when you buy eco-friendly products, they can still come in a plastic container you can’t use again. If you can’t refill your cleaning products or get them in sustainable packaging, no worries. You can make cleaning products all on your own, saving money and helping the environment, while Read More...

Aerial of fin whale in the Antarctic ocean.

Largest number of fin whales seen feeding together in over 50 years

Fin whales are the second-largest in the world, growing up to 85 feet (26 m) long and 160,000 pounds (72.3 metric tons). In 1976, the numbers of these magnificent giants in the Antarctic were dangerously low, caused by human commercial hunting practices. This caused a ban on commercial whaling to Read More...

Young man enjoys big and tasty breakfast at downtown cafe, prepares delicious sandwich or toast with avocado spread and smoked salmon on top.

The time has almost come for vegan lab-grown salmon filets to hit the market

Over the past few years, there’s been a lot of buzz around meat alternatives—lab-grown meat alternatives that are— that will help those who don’t want to sacrifice the taste and “mouth feel” of real animal products ease into a more sustainable, eco-friendly, and a plant-based Read More...

Ancient tree / Woodland walk at Allen Banks in Northumberland past ancient trees

This UK-based project maps England’s hidden ancient trees

An impressive project taken up by researchers at the University of Nottingham is revealing the secret hiding places of England’s ancient and veteran trees—and it turns out that the country is hosting ten times as many as experts had thought. Conservationists compare the researcher’s Read More...