LA bans new oil wells, landmark bill protecting same-sex marriage, random acts of kindness

In today’s edition of Squirrel News, Los Angeles has voted to ban new oil and gas wells, US Congress passes a bill protecting same-sex marriage, and we meet the people on a mission to offer random acts of kindness.

Los Angeles bans new oil wells in historic move

Groups lauded the LA City Council’s decision, saying it will allow communities of color to finally breathe easier. Advocates say oil wells and the health concerns that come with these disproportionately affect minority communities.

Source: Los Angeles Times

San Diego and Los Angeles prohibit use of plastic foam

Expanded polystyrene, a material commonly used in disposable coffee cups, is no longer an option in California’s two largest cities as they combat plastic pollution.

Source: grist

Trudeau commits £510m to Indigenous-led conservation initiatives

A partnership of 30 Indigenous groups safeguarding boreal forests, rivers, and other resources will receive funding in the Northwest Territories as part of this initiative.

Source: The Guardian

Sustainable packaging startup among Earthshot Prize winners

The £1m grant received by Notpla, a UK startup that makes packaging out of seaweed, will help the company to scale up.

Source: BBC

Bill protecting same-sex marriage passes US Congress

The measure repeals the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, which barred same-sex couples government benefits. The bill now awaits President Joe Biden’s signature in order to become law.

Source: Reuters

How Colorado’s ‘city of hate and bigotry’ is turning toward inclusiveness

Colorado Springs evangelicals once supported a discrimination bill. Now, religious leaders there are affirming LGBTQ+ people.

Source: The Guardian

Teen develops app for people struggling with gender identity

A college student’s introspective journey led him to create an app to support questioning, trans, nonbinary, and gender nonconforming individuals.

Source: PEOPLE

Reclaiming the ocean for children of colour

Zandile Ndhlovu, the country’s first black female freediving instructor, is on a mission to change long-held attitudes and teach young people to feel at home in the sea.

Source: The Guardian

Artificial nests protect African penguins from climate change impact

Researchers are racing against the clock to save more African penguins as their population dwindles. Over 1,500 handmade ceramic nest boxes have been deployed to provide a cool haven for penguins.

Source: Hakai Magazine

Meet the people who help total strangers

Charitable donations peak in December, but what about the rest of the year? Sally Howard meets the people dedicated to random acts of kindness—and learns why giving anonymously is even better for you.

Source: The Guardian

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