Photo: Ryan Stone/Unsplash (CCO)
In today’s edition of Squirrel News, we’re looking at scat-hunting sniffer dogs monitoring the behaviour of killer whales, a boost for Europe’s sleeper train industry as a greener alternative to long-distance travel, and a growing number of investors looking to close the financial gender gap in Africa’s startups.
Conservation canines are helping to protect endangered orcas
By tracking orca faeces, the dogs are able to indicate not only the direction of travel, but also enable scientists to collect samples and monitor behaviours such as diet, stress hormones, nutrition profiles and so on.
Sleeper trains are driving a sustainable travel boom in Europe
Major rail operators from Germany, Austria, Switzerland and France are teaming up to provide a network of cross-border sleeper trains linking 13 major European cities.
Source: Deutsche Welle
Women’s startups in Africa are receiving increased attention from investors
Eager to close the drastic gender gap within startup funding, a growing group of investors are viewing women-led businesses as as essential for the continent’s economic growth.
Source: The Christian Science Monitor
Alternative strategies for collecting fines are making collection practices more ethical
By offering ability-to-pay assessments, fairer payment plans and the chance to swap fines for community service, US cities are gradually removing individuals from the cycle of poverty that can stem from unpaid fines.
Source: Route Fifty
A mobile payment platform is helping reforest the Philippines
Users are able to collect “green energy points” with every transaction, which in turn fund projects aiming to protect one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots.
Source: The Planetary Press
Crisps and beer could be used to tackle climate change
Innovative new technology avoids generating new CO2 needed for creating fertliser by harnesses the substance organically derived from beer fermentation, before mixing it with potato waste.
Source: BBC News
Australian hair salons are becoming greener through new recycling initiatives
Australia’s hairdressers are getting serious about recycling, using clippings for compost, turning bottles into eyewear, and keeping bleach out of the drain.
Source: The Guardian
Mobility hubs in Minneapolis are making public transport much more accessible
By concentrating various modes of transport in strategically placed and centralised locations, residents are taking a step back from reliance on personal vehicles.
Source: Nex City
A Norwegian startup is simultaneously tackling Africa’s plastic and housing crises
The company repurposes recycled plastic to create modular building elements, providing a tangible solution to pollution and homelessness.
The world’s tiniest pig has been saved from near-extinction
Assamese wildlife conservationist Parag Deka has dedicated the past 23 years to protecting the pygmy hog.
Source: The Better India