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GUEST BLOG: Universities showing leadership in the COVID-19 crisis need to seize opportunities to tackle climate change and other sustainable development goals.

Universities are showing great leadership on Covid-19. They should now seize opportunities to tackle climate change and other sustainable development goals.

To mark Earth Day, our Chair Lucian J. Hudson writes on how the Higher Education sector is responding to one of the world’s biggest challenges, environmental sustainability.

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GUEST BLOG: COVID-19 - Nature's $10 Trillion Dollar Wake Up Call to the Finance Sector

Andrew W. Mitchell has spent the last sixteen years working with leaders on policy, supply chain risks, and innovative finance systems linked to sustainability. He is an international thought leader and communicator on natural capital, climate change, and tropical forests. 

He played a pivotal role in the foundation of Earthwatch Europe in the mid-1980s, then joining the Oxford office as Deputy Director in 1988.  He worked at the charity for 12 years, before leaving to start Global Canopy Programme. He now runs Equilibrium Futures. Andrew describes how he predicts Corona as an acute reminder of the consequences coming to the financial sector if humanity continues to mess with nature.

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Inside the soil lab: what happens to the soil collected by Citizen Scientists?

At the end of 2019, Earthwatch, WaterAid and WWF celebrated eight years of the HSBC Water Programme. The partnership aimed to provide and protect water sources and the ecosystems they support, inform and educate communities in need, and enable people to prosper across the world.

In the latter phase of this programme, Earthwatch engaged over 1,800 employees, globally, through the Sustainability Training Programme (STP) – training them to become citizen scientists, collecting data to support our research into Climate-Proof Cities. In the UK and France, research was conducted to better understand the relationship between urban tree management and the ecosystem services trees provide. To do this, the citizen scientists collected and tested soil samples in the field, and sent further samples to labs for more robust testing.

Angie Elwin explains how Vicky Struthers and Nerea Ferrando Jorge, researchers from the University of Reading, use the soil samples collected by HSBC citizen scientists and exactly what happens to the soil in the lab. 

Image: Researchers Vicky Struthers (left) and Nerea Ferrando Jorge (right) at the University of Reading who are analysing the soil samples collected on the HSBC Sustainability Training Programme.

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Welcome spring to your Nature Space

My small cottage garden has become a lot more exciting in the last week or so. There is the unmistakable whiff of spring in the air, the sun visits a lot more often, the birds are getting busy and their song is becoming increasingly louder and more beautiful. With that in mind, I started spending more time in the garden patiently checking and waiting for it to fully awaken and become full of life and colour. So far I’ve seen some very hungry honey bees flying around my grape hyacinths, and in my pond one of the many resident water striders is already awake waiting for his companions to join. I have also spotted a juvenile newt, a huge dragonfly nymph at the bottom of the pond and yesterday I saw my first early bumblebee of the year. What an exciting time!

 

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It's time to Teach the Future!

It's time to Teach the Future!

Climate change and biodiversity loss are two of the biggest issues facing humanity.

Plenty of children are aware of the crises but don’t feel that they have the power or the knowledge to make a difference. This leaves them feeling anxious and unsupported.

Meanwhile, other children feel completely disconnected from nature and lack the motivation to protect the natural world. This is bad news for the planet because soon it will be up to them to protect it.

Teach the Future is a youth-led campaign that aims to tackle both of these experiences by improving environmental education in schools and by giving young people a louder voice in tackling the climate and biodiversity crises.

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