Today’s Solutions: February 08, 2023

Sustainable Urban Development

With cities expected to host about 70 percent of the world's population, sustainable urban development is key to making communities worldwide more resilient against the growing threat of climate change. Find out about the latest urban practices from across the world aiming to make our cities more sustainable and inclusive in these good-news stories from The Optimist Daily.

Dirty Dusty Solar Panels with Text Clean Me Please

This ultra-thin coating can make solar panels self-cleaning

Solar panels cannot perform successfully if they are caked in filth, yet cleaning them on a regular basis can be time-consuming. Luckily, engineers in Germany are on the case and have created an ultra-thin coating that can self-clean solar panels and other surfaces. Solar is the most important Read More...

Man riding a bicycle in the park alone, green space

Study shows strong link between green spaces and less prescription drug use

According to new research, visits to parks, community gardens, and other urban green spaces may reduce city inhabitants' use of medicines for anxiety, sleeplessness, melancholy, high blood pressure, and asthma. Researchers in Finland discovered that visiting natural settings three to four times Read More...

Test tube row. Concept of medical or science laboratory

Magnets rapidly remove dangerous "forever chemicals" from water

Australia-based scientists have devised an exciting new method for eliminating dangerous "forever chemicals" from water. When a solution is added to contaminated water, it covers the contaminants and renders them magnetic, allowing them to be easily attracted and isolated. Per- and Read More...

Overlooking the solar photovoltaic panels and agricultural planting temperature shed

New solar panels harness the full light spectrum to improve crop yields

Crops and clean energy are increasingly sharing the same land as the globe struggles to deal with the climate problem and transitions to renewables and agrivoltaics — the cultivation of crops beneath the shade of solar panels. Scientists are now investigating how to harness the sun's light Read More...

Traffic in downtown Chicago with people, train, car and bus

US reveals the “Blueprint”: a plan to entirely decarbonize transportation

The United States Departments of Energy, Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and the Environmental Protection Agency have produced a much-needed Blueprint for decarbonizing the entire US transportation system. It is hoped that the policy will reduce all greenhouse gas emissions from the Read More...

Underwater inside the kelp forest in the ocean 

Secrets of the sea: hidden underwater forests may help fight climate crisis

The Nature Conservancy's marine biologist Frank Hurd spends his days amongst gigantic kelp curtains, studying underwater forests. One of his usual diving haunts is a kelp forest off Anacapa Island, one of the Channel Islands national park's protected rocky volcanic islets off southern Read More...

Big ashtray with cigarette butts. A smoker shakes off the ash in an ashtray.

Tobacco companies in Spain now fit the bill for cigarette butt clean-up

Tobacco businesses will be obliged to pay for the cleanup of millions of cigarette ends discarded by smokers each year under new environmental legislation in Spain. The decision, which went into effect last week, is part of a package of waste-reduction and recycling efforts. It calls for the Read More...

Brazil’s President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva

2022's most optimistic climate stories

These days, it’s easy to sink into feelings of climate anxiety and eco-grief. However, this past year brought us a number of good climate stories that encourage us not to lose hope! Renewables are expected to produce more energy than coal in the United States. Hydropower, wind, and solar Read More...

A woman orders food in the touch screen terminal with electronic menu in fast food restaurant

France's ban on single-use restaurant tableware is a fast-food “revolution”

Fast-food restaurants in France are now tackling one of the most significant shifts in the industry, ever: a government ban on disposable plates, cups, and tableware for anybody eating or drinking on-site. On January 1, McDonald's, Burger King, Starbucks, and Subway faced what Read More...

Green Education

Two new DC public schools model net zero education

It goes without saying that we should be teaching our children about important environmental matters, especially excessive energy consumption and the need for energy efficiency. But what about the energy that a school itself consumes? While it is a rarely-thought-of area for improvement, new Read More...