Environment

Why the Scottish wildcat is threatened by its ‘saviour’

Guardian Environment News - 4 hours 51 min ago
Scottish National Heritage would like us to believe it is winning the battle to save the species – it is doing nothing of the sort

In a pathetic little enclosure in Edinburgh Zoo, risibly done up to resemble a scrap of rural China, the suffering of the giant pandas continues. The two are not even a third of the way through a multimillion pound, 10-year stretch wrought solely for the twisted pleasure of gawping visitors stupid enough to swallow the fiction that they are somehow assisting in the conservation of these poor beasts and their kind.

Perversely, 150 miles north-west of Edinburgh, one of Scotland’s very few indigenous mammals and iconic of this country, struggles daily to retain a foothold on its very existence. The Scottish wildcat is down to the last few dozen of its kind, owing to a mixture of complacency, astonishing incompetence by the government agency tasked with its protection and, now, claims of a cover-up. Such are the defining physical and instinctive attributes of this gorgeous and ferocious predator that it must have been made for Scotland just as surely as Scotland was made for it. We have failed this creature, though, and it seems that few of us care enough to save it: we’d much rather pay nearly a tenner a pop to gaze through a glass darkly at two pitiful Chinese pandas.

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Categories: Environment

Six vital steps world leaders must agree to take to protect Earth

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2014/11/22 - 3:00pm
International talks in Paris in 2015 could see the world’s nations agree to limit global warming to a rise of 2C. Actually achieving that target will require huge commitments – not least by developed nations Continue reading...
Categories: Environment

Taxpayers to fund hundreds of fracking boreholes across the country

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2014/11/22 - 12:56pm
Drilling of holes to monitor ground movement and water pollution slammed as an attempt to dupe public over shale gas safety Continue reading...
Categories: Environment

What We Learn When Find Silence

NPR News - Environment - Sat, 2014/11/22 - 5:51am

From NPR's Guy Raz, host of the TED Radio Hour: the story of environmentalist John Francis, who took a 17-year vow of silence — and what he learned about the power of quiet.

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Categories: Environment

Starfish Illness Harms Other Sea Creatures

NPR News - Environment - Sat, 2014/11/22 - 5:51am

Starfish in the Pacific northwest are being decimated by what's called wasting disease. Researcher Drew Harvell tells NPR's Scott Simon that warming seas are making it worse.

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Categories: Environment

Bondi beach cleared of swimmers after lifesavers spot shark

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 11:48pm

Shark sighting comes after two great whites found dead in shark nets off Bondi beach

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Categories: Environment

A walk on the Common

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 10:30pm
Gorley Common, New Forest Some of the gorse bushes look well-manicured. They’re rounded and lack sprawling limbs. These have been trimmed by ponies, which find nutritious winter food in the plant Continue reading...
Categories: Environment

Another great white shark found dead in nets at Bondi beach

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 5:55pm

2.5m male great white was removed from shark net off northern end of Bondi beach on Saturday

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Categories: Environment

Shrinking Glaciers Could Squeeze Washington's Water Supply

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 2:22pm

Washington state is home to more glaciers than any other state in the lower 48. And they're receding faster than ever before.

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Categories: Environment

Stranded long-finned pilot whale on Essex river starved, says expert

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 1:24pm
Female calf found on beach near Goldhanger died in very poor nutritional condition, according to Zoological Society specialist Continue reading...
Categories: Environment

Dounreay nuclear plant fire led to ‘unauthorised’ radioactivity release

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 9:58am
Investigation identifies ‘unacceptable practices by staff’ relating to 7 October fire at site being decommissioned Continue reading...
Categories: Environment

EU wants stiff penalties and wiretaps to fight environmental crime

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 9:10am

Light punishment of Norfolk buzzard poisoner will not dissuade offenders or help enforcement efforts, says head of EU environmental crimes unit

Lenient penalties for environment crimes, such as the suspended sentence handed down to a former gamekeeper who poisoned buzzards, hamper law enforcement and obstruct police efforts to get authorisation for vital wiretaps, the head of an EU environmental crimes unit has told the Guardian.

Leif Gorts, who leads a team at Eurojust, was speaking as the cross-border crime-fighting agency launched its first environmental crimes report, showing a dearth of prosecutions in Europe with low penalties, under-reporting, poor cross-border cooperation and corruption all hobbling enforcement efforts.

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Categories: Environment

The week in wildlife – in pictures

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 8:17am

The best of this week’s images from the natural world include grazing giraffes, a jumping spider and a particularly nimble elephant

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Categories: Environment

Why Should We Look At The Clouds More Often?

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 7:21am

You don't need to plan a trip to find beauty and perspective. Just look up, says Gavin Pretor-Pinney, and stop for a moment every day to admire the beauty in the sky above and in our everyday lives.

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Categories: Environment

Why Would Someone Choose Silence For 17 Years?

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 7:21am

For almost three decades, John Francis has been a planetwalker, traveling the globe by foot and sail with a silent message of environmental respect. For 17 of those years he didn't speak a word.

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Categories: Environment

How Do Years Of Silence Change Someone?

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 7:21am

For almost three decades, John Francis has been a planetwalker, traveling the globe by foot and sail with a silent message of environmental responsibility. For 17 years he didn't speak a word.

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Categories: Environment

Icebreaker captain: 'if you come to grief, you’re up there alone'

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 6:46am

As a new Polar Code is adopted to protect the Arctic, one veteran icebreaker captain tells all about the artistry of ice navigating

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Categories: Environment

Polar code agreed to prevent Arctic environmental disasters

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 6:39am

International Maritime Organisation committee adopts measures to protect the environment in face of predicted polar shipping rush

The international body in charge of sea safety adopted measures on Friday to protect people and the environment during a predicted shipping rush in the Arctic.

But environment groups and insurers said the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) Maritime Safety Committee had failed to address key issues including a proposed ban on heavy fuel oil and how to safeguard against cowboy operators.

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Categories: Environment

Toyota hopes to recreate Prius success with hydrogen-powered Mirai

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2014/11/21 - 6:08am

Toyota is betting on its hydrogen fuel cell Mirai as the next generation of green car, but they face a hard sell to replicate popularity of their top-selling Prius

From the driver’s seat of the Toyota Mirai, the world’s first mass-produced hydrogen fuel cell car could be a plusher and more powerful version of the Prius – if it wasn’t for the H20 button on the dash which releases a trickle of water.

Until now, car companies have been slow to bring hydrogen fuel cell vehicles to market. But Toyota is betting on the Mirai (‘future’ in Japanese) to emerge as the next generation of green car.

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Categories: Environment
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