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A report warns that Australia's endangered animals will increase because of wildfires

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 11:55pm

The wide-ranging report found the number of Australian species listed as threatened had increased since the 2016 report.

(Image credit: Mick Tsikas/AP)

Categories: Environment

‘It goes up like tinder’: unprecedented blazes envelop Alaska

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 10:00pm

Across the state, 264 individual fires are burning and it is on track to break its 2004 record of 6.5m acres destroyed

Alaska has seen more than 500 forest fires since the beginning of April, which have forced the evacuation of mining camps, villages and remote cabins.

By 15 June, more than 1m acres (405,000 hectares) in the state had already gone up in flames, about the amount of acres that would normally burn in an entire fire season. By mid-July, more than 3m acres of land had been torched, putting the state at risk of breaking its 2004 record of 6.5m acres (2.6m hectares) burned.

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Categories: Environment

More than 1,000ha of koala habitat would be cleared for proposed Queensland coalmine

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 8:59pm

Campaigners warn of ‘disturbing trend’ of proposed mines falling just below the threshold requiring environmental impact statement

More than 1,000 hectares of koala habitat – as well as 70 hectares of greater glider habitat – would be cleared to dig coal under a new mine being proposed in central Queensland.

Despite both marsupials being recently listed as endangered due to habitat loss, the proposed mine, which is currently under consideration by the state government, does not require an environmental impact statement (EIS).

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Categories: Environment

‘Earth sends a warning’: how the papers covered the UK’s scorching heat

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 7:22pm

A Buckingham Palace guard suffering in the sun gets the picture editors’ attention, along with the prospect of more such heatwaves in the future

A picture of a Queen’s Guard sentry being given a sip of water outside Buckingham Palace is the defining image on Tuesday’s front pages, as the heatwave put the climate crisis in fresh focus.

All but a couple of the front pages feature the picture of the guardsman in his bearskin hat taking much-needed relief from the heat which on Monday topped 37.4 degrees in west London and a nationwide high of 38.1C in Santon Downham in Suffolk.

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Categories: Environment

Not...a western bluebird

The Field Lab - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 3:19pm
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Categories: Sustainable SW Blogs

Arizona cities respond to the worst drought in over a thousand years with a new plan

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 1:50pm

Cities in Arizona have started implementing state-required drought plans in response to the crisis on the Colorado River. The current drought is the worst in 1,200 years.

Categories: Environment

The Atlantic cod is coming back after strict catch limits greatly decreased numbers

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 1:41pm

Atlantic cod, a fish that was foundational to New England's economy, is being caught at historically low levels. But a research scientist says cod is in the early stages of a comeback.

Categories: Environment

Europe could hit record-breaking temperatures this week

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 1:30pm

Europe is reeling from a massive heat wave, and temperatures could hit records this week across much of the continent.

Categories: Environment

West Virginia to resume abortions after judge blocks enforcement of ban – as it happened

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 1:01pm

Jody Hice, a Georgia congressman who believes the baseless theory that the 2020 election was stolen from Donald Trump, has been subpoenaed by a grand jury investigating efforts to disrupt the results of the polls in the state, Politico reports:

In May, Hice lost his bid for the Republican nomination for Georgia secretary of state to Brad Raffensperger, who famously rejected Trump’s appeals to swing the state’s election results in his direction.

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Categories: Environment

Court orders UK government to explain how net zero policies will reach targets

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 11:06am

Green activists brought challenge, arguing climate change strategy did not spell out how carbon emissions cuts would be achieved

The high court has ordered the government to outline exactly how its net zero policies will achieve emissions targets, after a legal challenge from environmental groups.

Friends of the Earth, ClientEarth and the Good Law Project had all taken legal action over the government’s flagship climate change strategy, arguing it had illegally failed to include the policies it needed to deliver the promised emissions cuts.

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Categories: Environment

State of the environment: shocking report shows how Australia’s land and wildlife are being gradually destroyed

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 10:30am

List of threatened species grows as ecosystems show signs of collapse due to climate crisis and habitat loss

The health of Australia’s environment is poor and has deteriorated over the past five years due to pressures of climate change, habitat loss, invasive species, pollution and mining, according to a government report that warns the natural world holds the key to human wellbeing and survival.

The state of the environment report – a review completed by scientists last year but held back by the Morrison government until after the federal election – found abrupt changes in some Australian ecosystems over the past five years, with at least 19 now showing signs of collapse or near collapse.

Since 2016, 202 animal and plant species have been listed as threatened matters of national environmental significance, following 175 being added to the list between 2011 to 2016. This has happened while the rate of discovery and description of new species has slowed considerably over the past decade. There remain many more species that are unknown than those known.

While a government threatened species strategy had improved the trajectories of 21 priority species, many others did not show improvements. The list would increase substantially in coming years as the impact of the catastrophic 2019–20 bushfires – which killed or displaced between 1 billion and 3 billion animals – became clearer.

Australia has lost more mammal species than any other continent, and has one of the highest rates of species decline in the developed world. More than 100 Australian species have been listed as either extinct or extinct in the wild. The major causes of extinction were introduced species and habitat destruction and clearing.

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Categories: Environment

Energy fears weaken German taboos over nuclear power and speed limits

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 7:55am

Divisive ideas such as keeping nuclear plants open and regulating autobahn are now gaining traction

Germany’s energy crisis has led the coalition government to toy with ideas that have long been seen as politically taboo, such as extending the life of unpopular nuclear power plants and – perhaps even more divisive – imposing a speed limit on the autobahn in the hope it will reduce fuel usage.

As the country braces for a winter of uncertainty amid fears that Russian gas could be cut off completely and electricity may be in short supply, the three-way coalition of the Social Democrats, the Greens and the pro-business FDP are looking for ways to ease the situation.

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Categories: Environment

How a conservative US network undermined Indigenous energy rights in Canada

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 5:35am

Internal documents explain why oil and gas interests would benefit from a key Indigenous declaration being ‘defeated’

A US-based libertarian coalition has spent years pressuring the Canadian government to limit how much Indigenous communities can push back on energy development on their own land, newly reviewed strategy documents reveal.

The Atlas Network partnered with an Ottawa-based thinktank – the Macdonald-Laurier Institute (MLI) – which enlisted pro-industry Indigenous representatives in its campaign to provide “a shield against opponents”.

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Categories: Environment

Bob Bullard: supreme court’s climate change ruling places ‘uneven burdens on overburdened communities’

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 2:00am

Curbing federal authority over carbon emissions reductions and increasing heat waves will have a cascading effect on the most vulnerable communities, says the activist of environmental justice

As temperatures hit record highs in Houston, Texas, recently, Robert Bullard, considered the father of the environmental justice movement, saw a pattern. Hospitalizations from heat stroke and health outcomes such as asthma from living next to noxious facilities in the city’s Black neighborhoods have the same root cause.

“It’s brutal. What you’re looking at is another example of the climate and health impacts that will all fall disproportionately on our most vulnerable communities,” Bullard says. “We’re talking about the same environmental justice communities that historically have borne tremendous equity impacts from power plants, refineries, oil and gas facilities.”

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Categories: Environment

Heat torches Southern Europe, killing hundreds

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2022/07/18 - 1:57am

Ferocious wildfires are burning in Spain and France, which evacuated thousands of people and scrambled water-bombing planes and firefighters. Officials and scientists cited climate change as a factor.

(Image credit: Emilio Fraile/AP)

Categories: Environment

It is us we are waiting for! Africa needs to shape its own conservation and climate agenda

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2022/07/17 - 11:30pm

The IUCN Africa Protected Areas Congress offers a chance to find a way to balance economic growth with conserving wilderness

Africa’s more than 8,500 protected areas of land and sea cover more than 30% of the continent – an expanse almost the size of Australia and 28 times the size of the UK. These ecosystems play a critical role in climate mitigation and adaptation, as global heating wreaks havoc on all fronts.

Today, Africa is embarking on an ambitious trajectory, with significant technological advancements, radical agricultural techniques, groundbreaking approaches to alleviating poverty and unprecedented rates of economic growth. Our natural resources, especially those in protected areas, play a critical role in development models we pursue. However, only about 1,000 of these protected areas have sound management strategies.

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Categories: Environment

Farnborough airshow to focus on cleaner flying and potential fighter jet deal

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2022/07/17 - 10:01pm

Manufacturers to emphasise their efforts to reduce environmental impact of planes

Low-emission air travel and a potential deal for Japan to help build the UK’s next-generation Tempest fighter jet are set to take centre stage at the annual Farnborough airshow this week.

Executives from global aerospace manufacturers and airlines will gather at the airport in Hampshire after a four-year gap. The show, which begins on Monday, normally happens every two years but was cancelled in 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic, as the aviation industry faced potential collapse.

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Categories: Environment

Sharks mistaking feet for fish are likely behind Long Island attacks

NPR News - Environment - Sun, 2022/07/17 - 6:07pm

A shark expert said the likely culprits behind the Long Island incidents are juvenile sand tiger sharks, which may accidentally bite humans while chasing fish.

(Image credit: Loic Venance/AFP via Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

China floods leave at least 12 dead, with thousands evacuated

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2022/07/17 - 5:39pm

Another 12 missing in flash floods in Sichuan and Gansu, as some areas receive double their monthly rain in less than two days

Flash floods in south-west and north-west China have left at least a dozen dead and put thousands of others in harm’s way, state media has reported.

In the south-western province of Sichuan, at least six people have died and another 12 are missing after torrential rain triggered flash floods, state-owned news outlet CGTN reported on Sunday.

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Categories: Environment

Unions call for maximum UK workplace temperature as heatwave descends

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2022/07/17 - 4:01pm

Staff should be given flexible working options and more breaks as heat approaches 40C, say union leaders

Unions are calling for people to get legal protection against high temperatures in UK workplaces, as a heatwave arrives that could cause temperatures to approach 40C on Monday and Tuesday.

The GMB union said the government should set a maximum temperature for workplaces of 25C, meaning employers should offer flexible working and travel arrangements, give staff extra breaks and relax dress codes to allow staff to wear cooler clothes.

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Categories: Environment
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