Gray whaleJune 16, 1824: In the back room of a London coffeehouse, the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is founded. The RSPCA is the world’s first national animal protection organization.

June 16, 1972: Declaring that "The protection and improvement of the human environment … is the urgent desire of the peoples of the whole world and the duty of all governments," the U.N.'s first environment summit ends in Stockholm, Sweden.

June 16, 1987: Orange Band, the last member of its species — named for the ID band tied to its leg — died in Florida. The dusky seaside sparrow was once common along a stretch of the Atlantic coast of central Florida, but intense development doomed the species.

June 16, 1994: Off-limits for hunting for nearly half a century, California gray whales (at right) are removed from the Endangered Species List.

Photo: Jim Borrowman, Straitwatch/NOAA

This feature is compiled by Peter Dykstra, an MNN contributor and publisher of Environmental Health News and The Daily Climate.

The opinions expressed by MNN Bloggers and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not reflect the opinions of MNN.com. While we have reviewed their content to make sure it complies with our Terms and Conditions, MNN is not responsible for the accuracy of any of their information.