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17,000 Niantic players worked to collect 145 tons of rubbish in celebration of Earth Day 2019

"An effort like this highlights how much impact people can have when they work together."

17,000 Pokémon Go and Ingress players have helped developer Niantic collect 145 tons of rubbish across the world in celebration of Earth Day 2019, smashing the company's top target of attracting 7000 players.

Collectively volunteering 41,000 hours to the clean-up, players from 41 different countries teamed up for Niantic's second annual attempt to "make our communities cleaner". While non-government organisations and charities hosted 176 events, the vast majority of the 476 rubbish collecting activities were arranged by the players themselves.

"We're astounded with how much everyone involved has achieved - an effort like this highlights how much impact people can have when they work together," said Niantic's Yennie Solheim Fuller via a blog on its official website. "Players worked in groups of 1 to 2,500, alongside government agencies, volunteer organizations, and fellow community members, creating incredible impact."

Pokémon Go held a series of special limited-time events to encourage participation, including boosting the chance of grabbing a Shiny Diglett along with an increased number of grass types. Players who participated in the clean-up efforts could also secure bonus awards.

In other Pokémon Go news, legendaries Uxie, Mesprit and Azelf will now be available to challenge in regional raids until 27th May (9pm GMT). As before, Mesprit will appear in Europe, Azelf in the Americas, and Uxie in Asia-Pacific.

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Vikki Blake

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When​ ​her friends​ ​were falling in love with soap stars, Vikki was falling in love with​ ​video games. She's a survival horror survivalist​ ​with a penchant for​ ​Yorkshire Tea, men dressed up as doctors and sweary words. She struggles to juggle a fair-to-middling Destiny/Halo addiction​ ​and her kill/death ratio is terrible.

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