Lawyers say Gove proposals for Brexit environmental watchdog are useless

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2018/08/07 - 9:07am

Bar Council say planned new UK watchdog lacks teeth, as it will not be able to take the government to court

A new watchdog supposed to safeguard the UK’s environment after Brexit will lack the legal “teeth” necessary to hold the government to account, the country’s top lawyers have said.

According to the Bar Council, the body to be charged with overseeing the UK’s environmental protections would not be able to take the government to court, a key power under the current legislation which comes from the EU.

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Categories: Environment

Sea Levels Rise On A Community Not Convinced Of Climate Change

NPR News - Environment - Tue, 2018/08/07 - 8:20am

America's first full casualty of climate change could be Tangier Island, a tiny sliver of land in the Chesapeake Bay.

(Image credit: Kaycie Goral/1A)

Categories: Environment

Graduation snap: Texas student's photo with alligator goes viral

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2018/08/07 - 3:55am

Makenzie Noland’s pose with 14ft Big Tex has become an internet sensation

Makenzie Noland, a Texas student, poses for her graduation photo in cap, sash and – somewhat unusually – with an alligator.

The student shared the image on Facebook and Instagram with the caption “not your typical graduation photo”, and found herself at the centre of the internet’s attention.

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Categories: Environment

Caribbean states beg Trump to grasp climate change threat: 'War has come to us'

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2018/08/07 - 3:00am

As warming temperatures caused by climate change is strengthening hurricanes, leaders in the region plead with Trump to rejoin the Paris climate deal

Caribbean states and territories have rounded on the Trump administration for dismantling the US’s response to climate change, warning that greenhouse gas emissions must be sharply cut to avoid hurricanes and sea level rise threatening the future of their island idylls.

The onset of this year’s hurricane season has seen leaders in the region tell the Guardian that Donald Trump needs to grasp the existential threat they face. Rising temperatures and increased precipitation caused by climate change is strengthening hurricanes, researchers have found, even as the overall number of storms remains steady.

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Categories: Environment

Climate Change Threatens Midwest's Wild Rice, A Staple For Native Americans

NPR News - Environment - Tue, 2018/08/07 - 1:57am

When harvests are bad, Native Americans in the region may go without rice for the year. And there have been a lot of bad years lately, as climate change causes more frequent and severe rainstorms.

(Image credit: Joe Proudman/Courtesy of University of California Davis)

Categories: Environment

Western Fire Crews Get An Assist From Australia And New Zealand

NPR News - Environment - Tue, 2018/08/07 - 1:56am

Fires in Washington state, Oregon and Northern California have firefighters overtaxed and needing a break — relief is coming from New Zealand and Australia.

(Image credit: Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

Mendocino Complex wildfire becomes California's biggest ever

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2018/08/06 - 11:00pm

Thousands of firefighters battle blaze as it destroys 87 homes and 82 other structures, and forces evacuations

Plumes of smoke towered over flame-engulfed mountains in northern California on Monday evening as thousands of firefighters grappled with the largest wildfire in state history.

At a community hall in a small farming community 121 miles north-east of San Francisco, Renato Lira, an American Red Cross disaster services worker, looked through photos on his phone of the fire he had just driven through to set up an evacuation center. As he flicked, his screen turned red.

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Categories: Environment

Labor calls for reef foundation to return $444m grant

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2018/08/06 - 6:31pm

Money was awarded at a meeting with Malcolm Turnbull and Josh Frydenberg, with no tender process

Labor has called for a $444m government grant to the Great Barrier Reef Foundation to be returned.

It comes after the prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, defended the decision to award the money to the small private foundation and said it had been subject to “a very thorough process”.

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Categories: Environment

UK would run out of food a year from now with no-deal Brexit, NFU warns

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2018/08/06 - 4:01pm

Farmers’ union says supply would dry up by August 2019 if Britain had to be self-sufficient

Britain would run out of food on this date next year if it cannot continue to easily import from the EU and elsewhere after Brexit, the National Farmers’ Union has warned.

Minette Batters, the NFU president, urged the government to put food security at the top of the political agenda after the prospect of a no-deal Brexit was talked up this week.

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Categories: Environment

'Big call': minister refuses to link drought to climate change on Q&A

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2018/08/06 - 2:21pm

Agriculture minister David Littleproud tells ABC audience he doesn’t ‘give a rats’ whether climate change is man-made

The agriculture minister says linking the drought affecting much of Australia to man-made climate change is a “big call” and he does not “give a rats if it’s man-made or not”.

David Littleproud made the comment on the ABC’s Q&A program on Monday, which was filmed in Lismore in the northern rivers region of New South Wales. His comment was booed by the audience.

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Categories: Environment

Climate And Wildfire Science Specialist Weighs In On Worsening Conditions In California

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2018/08/06 - 2:11pm

NPR's Ari Shapiro speaks with LeRoy Westerling, climate and wildfire science specialist at the University of California, Merced, about President Trump and Gov. Jerry Brown's, Calif., comments on worsening wildfires.

Categories: Environment

Wildfires Continue To Burn Through California

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2018/08/06 - 2:11pm

Multiple wildfires are burning throughout California. The largest are the Carr Fire near Redding and the Mendocino County Complex Fire just north of Sonoma, Calif.

Categories: Environment

The Battle for the Beach

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2018/08/06 - 8:20am

We're running out of sand.

(Image credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

The Real Estate We're In

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2018/08/06 - 8:06am

NPR launches a new series on America's housing crisis. “Shut Out of the Housing Market,” we talk to the reporter behind it.

(Image credit: FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

Changing Autos, Changing Climate

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2018/08/06 - 7:06am

What does the future of the auto industry look like?

(Image credit: Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

US wildfires: smoke billows and we're stuck indoors – this is how we live now

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2018/08/06 - 5:58am

The pool is closed, the kids can’t play outside – we’re all trying to avoid harmful smoke from wildfires burning far away

Last week my kids went to a nature daycamp in Klamath Falls, Oregon, near the California border, where we live. It was meant to be a week of roaming the hills, learning about local species like fence lizards and sagebrush. Instead, they looked at pictures of these species while staying inside with all the windows firmly shut.

Related: California's wildfires: why are they so intense and what can be done?

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Categories: Environment

The GOP and Big Oil can't escape blame for climate change | Dana Nuccitelli

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2018/08/06 - 3:00am

The New York Times magazine blames ‘human nature,’ but fingers have already been pointed at the true culprits

Last week’s issue of the New York Times magazine was devoted to a single story by Nathaniel Rich that explored how close we came to an international climate agreement in 1989, and why we failed. The piece is worth reading – it’s a well-told, mostly accurate, and very informative story about a key decade in climate science and policy history. But sadly, it explicitly excuses the key players responsible for our continued failure.

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Categories: Environment

NSW prosecutions for land-clearing fall from 10 to two, report card shows

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2018/08/05 - 7:01pm

Exclusive: Figures released after eight-month FOI battle by the Guardian shows clearing spiked sharply in 2015-16

Only two prosecutions for illegal land-clearing were launched in New South Wales in 2015-16, down from 10 the previous year, the long-awaited report card on the state of land-clearing shows.

However, the Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) appears to have had more success with cases already under way the year before, with four convictions secured, up from just one in 2014-15.

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Categories: Environment

'It's an epidemic' – farmers suffer from the theft of vital quad bikes

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2018/08/05 - 5:00pm

Jamie Smith has had two vehicles stolen from his farm in Worcestershire in 15 months

Jamie Smith’s Worcestershire farm has been broken into three times in 15 months. On the first two occasions, he had a quad bike stolen. In the most recent burglary, two months ago, his workshop was broken into but fortunately his quad bike was not there.

The 65-year-old, who has been a farmer for 30 years, estimates that over the same 15-month period about 35 quad bikes have been stolen from farms in a 20-mile stretch from Pershore through to Moreton-in-Marsh in Gloucestershire.

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Categories: Environment

Farmers using medieval methods to combat rural crime

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2018/08/05 - 5:00pm

Farmers put up earth banks and dry ditches to block criminals who use 4 x 4 vehicles to get on to farm land

Farmers are resorting to medieval methods to combat rural crime which has risen to its highest level in four years, an increase being blamed on organised criminal gangs and policing cuts.

Offences against farmers and other rural businesses cost an estimated £44.5m last year, an increase of 13.4% from 2016, according to insurer NFU (National Farmers Union) Mutual.

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Categories: Environment
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