How BP not caring about their environment plan actually helped this environment.

No new oil rigs in Australia's whale nursery. At least, not yet.

A government regulator has put the kibosh on BP's plans to drill in the Great Australian Bight. At least, for a while that is.

But wait. Back up. What the heck is a bight?

The Great Australian Bight is this huge open bay off the southern coast of Australia. Lots of cliffs around it. Looks like this:


Some of the cliffs are over 60 meters tall. Wouldn't want to fall from that. Image by Takver/Flickr.

The oil giant wanted to put in four new exploratory wells here a little way off the coast. But their plan to protect the Bight against any ecological damage wasn't up to snuff, the government regulator said:

"After a thorough and rigorous assessment, NOPSEMA [the National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority] has determined that the environment plan does not yet meet the criteria for acceptance under the environment regulations, and has advised BP of this decision."

You know that sinking feeling you get when you see "environment" and "BP" in the same sentence? Yeah, they had it too.

"After its Gulf of Mexico disaster, you would think BP would be at pains to demonstrate that it is going well above and beyond regulatory requirements to ensure its safety and environmental plans are the new standard of global best practice," said Wilderness Society South Australia director Peter Owen.

BP was, of course, the oil company responsible for the Deepwater Horizon disaster in 2010 that released 200 million gallons of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico. It was the worst marine oil spill ever, sledgehammering the Gulf's fishing and tourism industry.

The oil mucks up bird's feathers: They can't fly, they can't keep warm, and they can't keep dry after. It's pretty much a death sentence. GIF via Bloomberg Business/YouTube.

“It is very concerning that BP doesn't appear to be taking the potential risks drilling in our pristine oceans presents seriously at all," Owen continued.

Everyone raise their hands if they like non-oil-covered animals!

The Bight is an important sanctuary for many species. Whales live there — humpback whales, blue whales — it's even where many southern right whales come to give birth and raise their young. That's not to mention it's the home of sea lions, fish, seabirds, and countless other species.

How much would you pay to get that kind of view? GIF via Jaimen Hudson/YouTube.

And, oh yeah, humans live there too. For them, the coast brings in $442 million per year in fishing money and $1.2 billion in tourism.

BP may return. But we might be able to stop them.

According to NOPSEMA guidelines, BP now has the chance to edit and resubmit their plans. This is a crucial moment.

The Wilderness Society is calling for more donations to help them keep up their opposition. So far they've done some research and modeling and gathered signatures for a petition, but they've got more work ahead of them.

“It was only five years ago that BP caused one of the worst oil spills in history in the Gulf of Mexico," they said. "We won't let BP do the same to Australia."

Learn more about what you can do to support The Wilderness Society and keep BP out of this important natural sanctuary.

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The Wilderness Society

On an old episode of "The Oprah Winfrey Show" in July 1992, Oprah put her audience through a social experiment that puts racism in a new light. Despite being nearly two decades old, it's as relevant today as ever.

She split the audience members into two groups based on their eye color. Those with brown eyes were given preferential treatment by getting to cut the line and given refreshments while they waited to be seated. Those with blue eyes were made to put on a green collar and wait in a crowd for two hours.

Staff were instructed to be extra polite to brown-eyed people and to discriminate against blue-eyed people. Her guest for that day's show was diversity expert Jane Elliott, who helped set up the experiment and played along, explaining that brown-eyed people were smarter than blue-eyed people.

Watch the video to see how this experiment plays out.

Oprah's Social Experiment on Her Audience www.youtube.com

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via Cadbury

Cadbury has removed the words from its Dairy Milk chocolate bars in the U.K. to draw attention to a serious issue, senior loneliness.

On September 4, Cadbury released the limited-edition candy bars in supermarkets and for every one sold, the candy giant will donate 30p (37 cents) to Age UK, an organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for the elderly.

Cadbury was prompted to help the organization after it was revealed that 225,000 elderly people in the UK often go an entire week without speaking to another person.

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Well Being

Young people today are facing what seems to be greater exposure to complex issues like mental health, bullying, and youth violence. As a result, teachers are required to be well-versed in far more than school curriculum to ensure students are prepared to face the world inside and outside of the classroom. Acting as more than teachers, but also mentors, counselors, and cheerleaders, they must be equipped with practical and relevant resources to help their students navigate some of the more complicated social issues – though access to such tools isn't always guaranteed.

Take Dr. Jackie Sanderlin, for example, who's worked in the education system for over 25 years, and as a teacher for seven. Entering the profession, she didn't anticipate how much influence a student's home life could affect her classroom, including "students who lived in foster homes" and "lacked parental support."

Dr. Jackie Sanderlin, who's worked in the education system for over 25 years.

Valerie Anglemyer, a middle school teacher with more than 13 years of experience, says it can be difficult to create engaging course work that's applicable to the challenges students face. "I think that sometimes, teachers don't know where to begin. Teachers are always looking for ways to make learning in their classrooms more relevant."

So what resources do teachers turn to in an increasingly fractured world? "Joining a professional learning network that supports and challenges thinking is one of the most impactful things that a teacher can do to support their own learning," Anglemyer says.

Valerie Anglemyer, a middle school teacher with more than 13 years of experience.

A new program for teachers that offers this network along with other resources is the WE Teachers Program, an initiative developed by Walgreens in partnership with ME to WE and Mental Health America. WE Teachers provides tools and resources, at no cost to teachers, looking for guidance around the social issues related to poverty, youth violence, mental health, bullying, and diversity and inclusion. Through online modules and trainings as well as a digital community, these resources help them address the critical issues their students face.

Jessica Mauritzen, a high school Spanish teacher, credits a network of support for providing her with new opportunities to enrich the learning experience for her students. "This past year was a year of awakening for me and through support… I realized that I was able to teach in a way that built up our community, our school, and our students, and supported them to become young leaders," she says.

With the new WE Teachers program, teachers can learn to identify the tough issues affecting their students, secure the tools needed to address them in a supportive manner, and help students become more socially-conscious, compassionate, and engaged citizens.

It's a potentially life-saving experience for students, and in turn, "a great gift for teachers," says Dr. Sanderlin.

"I wish I had the WE Teachers program when I was a teacher because it provides the online training and resources teachers need to begin to grapple with these critical social issues that plague our students every day," she adds.

In addition to the WE Teachers curriculum, the program features a WE Teachers Award to honor educators who go above and beyond in their classrooms. At least 500 teachers will be recognized and each will receive a $500 Walgreens gift card, which is the average amount teachers spend out-of-pocket on supplies annually. Teachers can be nominated or apply themselves. To learn more about the awards and how to nominate an amazing teacher, or sign up for access to the teacher resources available through WE Teachers, visit walgreens.com/metowe.

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via KGW-TV / YouTube

One of the major differences between women and men is that women are often judged based on their looks rather than their character or abilities.

"Men as well as women tend to establish the worth of individual women primarily by the way their body looks, research shows. We do not do this when we evaluate men," Naomi Ellemers Ph.D. wrote in Psychology Today.

Dr. Ellers believes that this tendency to judge a woman solely on her looks causes them to be seen as an object rather than a person.

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