World Environment Day is June 5th, and it is annually celebrated by holding various events in order to foster people's awareness of environmental preservation and make its practice a daily life. It was enacted at the United Nations Conference on Human Environment in Stockholm, Sweden in June 1972. Since its foundation in 1987, the U.N. Environmental Programme (UNEP) has been holding events every year by selecting the theme of the year and taking turns on each continent. In 1996, the Republic of Korea established the day June 5th as Environment Day. And in 1997, Korea held the World Environment Day event in Seoul. Since then, it has been showing strong interest in the environment.
Garbage Separation and Discharge Challenge by International WeLoveU Foundation Due to COVID-19, physical contact in daily life was minimized, and nonface-to-face consumption such as the use of delivery services increased significantly. According to the Ministry of Environment, the waste of disposable products increased 15.6%p from an average of 733 tons per day in 2019 to an average of 848 tons per day in 2020 and is expected to increase further. In social distancing situations, the amount of garbage continues to increase due to a surge in delivery food use, and the use of plastic disposable products including discarded face masks. Besides, trash has been piling up as the recycling waste has not been sent overseas and its price has been falling. Disposable products become trash if they are just discarded, but if they are separated and discharged, they become recyclable resources. The Garbage Separation Challenge is an online campaign conducted to establish a desirable culture of separating and discharging recycling products in society and provide an opportunity to think about resource circulation. Numerous people interested in environmental issues, not only in Korea but also abroad, participated in the campaign. They posted photos or videos of putting garbage separation into practices on social media or online communities along with hashtags such as #separate garbage challenge and #recyclingchallenge. Among a total of 1,182 participating works, there were many posts informing the right separation and discharge methods, such as washing off foreign substances on recycling products and thoroughly dividing recyclable materials that are easy to throw away like toothpaste, postal envelopes, and tissue boxes into paper, vinyl, and plastic. Works containing brilliant ideas of reusing were also posted, and stories that led to the participation of family, colleagues, and acquaintances in daily life were also told Plastic-eating Sea Turtles WeLoveU Foundation Why are turtles so interested in plastic? Until recently, scientists have not been able to find out the reason. Scientists suspected that the reason why sea turtles eat plastic bags was because they looked like jellyfish. Researchers from the Red Sea Turtle Research Project have announced a study in the biological journal Curtt Biology. According to the study, sea turtles eat old plastic because plastic smells like shrimp. It is said that when microorganisms in the sea begin to decompose plastic, a component called dimethyl sulfide, similar to the smell of shrimp or fish, is produced. The researchers conducted an actual experiment on 15 sea turtles. The plastic immersed in seawater for five weeks and the one not immersed in seawater were put in a water tank to observe the turtles' reaction. Surprisingly, they were only interested in the plastic immersed in seawater, Researchers expressed concern, saying, "Sea animals are misled by the smell of plastic waste, and there is a possibility that they will continue to die in groups in the future." Kyungnam Times ● 19 Livestock Industry: The Main Culprit of Greenhouse Gases? As countries around the world push ahead carbon neutrality to overcome the climate crisis, the livestock industry also has problems to solve. According to the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), greenhouse gases emitted from the livestock industry account for about 16.5%p of the total amount generated. In addition, demand for carbon neutrality in the livestock industry is increasing as it is known that methane generated in livestock industries such as livestock manure has a 21 times worse effect than carbon dioxide on global warming. In Korea, the proportion of greenhouse gas emissions in the livestock industry accounts for only about 1.29 percent of the total. However, the livestock industry's carbon emissions continued to increase to 9.1 million tons in 2017, 9.4 million tons in 2018, and 9.5 million tons in 2019. Along with the continued growth of the livestock industry, livestock manure which causes nitrous oxide and methane gas generation will continue to increase, causing social problems such as greenhouse gas generation and odor complaints. Korean government has come forward to solve the carbon emission problem in the livestock industry.