Tigers are one of many species threatened by extinction. Clovis Wood Photography, Unsplash

The dawn of the sixth mass extinction, Indigenous-led wildlife tourism and Exxon’s net-zero secrets

News to know in our bi-weekly digest

Are you wanting to dip your toes into sustainable investment as part of your financial resolutions this year? This new digital toolkit will help you get started.

In this Landscape News bi-weekly round-up, we get immersed in dirty laundry, Netflix satire and many more environmental headlines from around the world.

PLANET

A northern white rhinoceros. Only two of this species are left – and both are female. Josh More, Flickr
A northern white rhinoceros. Only two of these rhinos are left – and both are female. Josh More, Flickr

It’s official: the sixth mass extinction has already begun, and humans are to blame. The Earth may have lost up to 13 percent of its species since the year 1500.

The climate crisis could also doom the bumblebee, while pests like mosquitoes, locusts and houseflies are likely to thrive in the decades to come.

Hang your clothes, not the planet, out to dry: tumble dryers are a leading source of air pollution from textile microfibers. (Here’s our quick guide on how to do your laundry sustainably.)

PEOPLE

Malawi is suffering from drought, floods, landslides and food insecurity. Neil Palmer, CIAT
Malawi is suffering from drought, floods, landslides and food insecurity. Neil Palmer, CIAT

This year, some 274 million people around the world will need humanitarian aid due to poverty, conflict and climate disasters, but many of these sufferings are going unknown. Here are the top 10 crises that the mainstream media failed to properly report.

The COVID-19 pandemic has been catastrophic for African wildlife tourism, but these Indigenous-managed projects offer a glimmer of hope.

From plastics to pesticides, there are more than 350,000 different types of manufactured chemicals – and they’re endangering both us and the natural environment.

Bolivia’s fishing communities are literally sick of gold mining, which is contaminating their fish and water with deadly levels of mercury.

CLIMATE

The sea near the Maldives, an island country threatened by climate change-induced sea level rise. Hotel Kaesong, Flickr
The sea near the Maldives, an island country threatened by climate change-induced sea level rise. Hotel Kaesong, Flickr

Last year was the sixth-hottest year on record, and the ocean is now hotter than ever for the third year in a row.

As Pakistan grapples with deadly snowfallAustralia and Argentina are baking in record-high temperatures that are imperiling much of the world’s corn and soybean production.

Netflix’s new sci-fi satire Don’t Look Up pokes fun at humanity’s failure to tackle the climate crisis. Here’s what climate scientists make of the film.

Is the climate crisis making skiing more dangerous? Artificial snow is faster, icier and much more painful to fall on, pro skiers say.

BUSINESS

A worker installing solar panels in Manila. Lisa Marie David, IMF Photo
A worker installing solar panels in Manila. Lisa Marie David, IMF Photo

Workers are becoming increasingly vocal about climate action: more than three-quarters of global executives say their climate policies affect talent retention.

Oil giant ExxonMobil has finally pledged to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. At the same time, it’s asking the Texas Supreme Court to help silence its critics.

In France, car ads will soon have to encourage people to use more climate-friendly forms of transport, such as public transport, carpooling, cycling or walking.

It’s Veganuary once again – or is it Regenuary? Here’s a new eating challenge for omnivores looking to cut down on their carbon footprints.

POLICY

Darvaza Crater has been burning since Soviet scientists lit on fire a hole that collapsed during a natural gas drilling expedition. Ybrayym Esenov, Unsplash
Darvaza Crater has been burning since a fire was lit in a hole that collapsed during a natural gas drilling expedition. Ybrayym Esenov, Unsplash

Are the Gates of Hell about to close? Turkmenistan’s Darvaza gas crater has burned for some 50 years, but the country’s president reportedly wants to put it out.

Speaking of gates, Venice’s brand-new flood defenses are already outdated and will soon need to be upgraded as sea levels rise.

And as rich countries continue to hoard COVID-19 vaccines, Cuba’s homegrown jabs could prove a game changer for low-income countries.

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