Nature Stakes its Claim on Earth Day

Monkeys climb on a car in Ode village, India, during a nationwide lockdown. March 25, 2020.Image: Sam Panthaky/AFP/Getty
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Monkeys climb on a car in Ode village, India, during a nationwide lockdown. March 25, 2020.Image: Sam Panthaky/AFP/Getty

On this 50th anniversary of Earth Day, the halting of human activity has left city air cleaner than it’s been in a long time and inspired wildlife to stake its claim to city streets, AP reports.
 
Monkeys are overtaking villages in India (see above), sheep are running amok at McDonald’s in Wales.

And in March, air pollution plummeted 46% in Paris, 26% in Rio and 29% in Los Angeles.
 
Scientists are seizing this wildly unexpected opportunity to study how the Earth’s response to humanity’s indoors exile.
 
In terms of climate change, these forced changes reveal “that “impossible” things are actually doable. “In this case, our society just demonstrated that it can choose to change more and faster than we ever imagined,” writes MIT President L. Rafael Reif in a Boston Globe op-ed.

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