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Radical millennials are a climate force to be reckoned with | Geoff Dembicki

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2017/08/13 - 3:00am

The window for hope is closing rapidly for the planet. But young activists are demonstrating their power at the ballot box to push for a different future

  • Geoff Dembicki is the author of Are We Screwed? How a New Generation is Fighting to Survive Climate Change

If progressives can’t take back control of the White House and Congress from climate change deniers in the next three years, it’s conceivable that humankind could be screwed. But evidence is mounting that a new political force is up to the task. It has millions of potential supporters across the US, the UK and Canada. It’s openly critical of capitalism. And it’s led by millennials such as Moumita Ahmed.

The 25-year-old activist is intimately aware of what’s at stake. She grew up in Queens, New York, and rose to prominence during the 2016 Democratic primaries as co-founder of a group now known as Millennials for Revolution.

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Categories: Environment

Tanzania's ghost safari: how western aid contributed to the decline of a wildlife haven

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2017/08/12 - 11:00pm

Lions, elephants and hippos have vanished from Kilombero valley after UK- and US-funded projects helped turn a once-thriving habitat into farmland, teak, and sugar plantations

The long road from Dar es Salaam brings you through sparsely wooded hills and fields to the narrow northern neck of the Kilombero valley. There’s a bend in the road, then the land opens out, suddenly, in front of you.

Along the west side lie the steep-faced Udzungwa mountains, one of the last pristine rainforests in Tanzania. The Kilombero river runs through the red soils of the valley, flooding in November or December and subsiding by June. Down the longer eastern flank rise the Mahenge mountains, and beyond them, invisible, unfurls the vast territory of the Selous game reserve, one of the largest remaining chunks of African wilderness.

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Categories: Environment

The eco guide to optimism

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2017/08/12 - 10:00pm

OK, the Sixth Mass Extinction may be upon us, but there are still some reasons to be cheerful

Let’s begin with the bad news. First, Earth Overshoot Day – the point at which the world consumes more natural resources than the planet can renew throughout the year – shifted forward this year to 2 August, putting humanity in the red for longer.

We are starting to unlink greenhouse gas emissions from production and consumption

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Categories: Environment

New coal plants have a role in Australia's energy future, Josh Frydenberg says

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2017/08/12 - 5:50pm

Energy minister’s comments on market intervention leave open the possibility of government support of coal-fired power

New high-efficiency low-emission (HELE) coal-fired power plants have a role in the energy mix and the government is prepared to intervene in the market, Josh Frydenberg has said.

The energy and environment minister told Sky News on Sunday that new coal plants “need to be considered” alongside other sources of baseload power, and the government could intervene if the market failed to deliver the “best possible outcomes” in the electricity market.

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Categories: Environment

The war on food waste has a new weapon: a £99 fridge camera

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2017/08/12 - 4:04pm
Phone app offers households savings for a fraction of the cost of a top-of-the-range smart fridge

The world’s first wireless fridge camera goes on sale in the UK next month aimed at helping households slash food waste by being able to check exactly what they have in their refrigerator at any time.

As well as taking selfies to be sent to the user, the Smarter FridgeCam and app will also monitor use-by dates and send out automatic top-up reminders to buy more milk, for example. It will also encourage people to eat what they already have – typically festering at the back of the fridge or in the salad box – by suggesting recipes.

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Categories: Environment

Scientists discover 91 volcanoes below Antarctic ice sheet

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2017/08/12 - 3:11pm
This is in addition to 47 already known about and eruption would melt more ice in region affected by climate change

Scientists have uncovered the largest volcanic region on Earth – two kilometres below the surface of the vast ice sheet that covers west Antarctica.

The project, by Edinburgh University researchers, has revealed almost 100 volcanoes – with the highest as tall as the Eiger, which stands at almost 4,000 metres in Switzerland.

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Categories: Environment

Asia’s Harry Potter obsession poses threat to owls

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2017/08/12 - 1:44pm
From Indonesia to India, wild birds are being sold as pets to families who want their own Hedwig. Ecologists call for protection to help species survive

The Harry Potter phenomenon has broken publishing and cinema box-office records and spawned a series of lucrative theme parks. But wildlife experts are sounding the alarm over a sad downside to JK Rowling’s tales of the troubled young wizard. The illegal trade in owls has jumped in the far east over the past decade and researchers fear it could endanger the survival of these distinctive predators in Asia.

Conservationists say the snowy owl Hedwig – who remains the young wizard’s loyal companion for most of the Harry Potter series – is fuelling global demand for wild-caught birds for use as pets. In 2001, the year in which the first film was released, only a few hundred were sold at Indonesia’s many bird markets. By 2016, the figure had soared to more than 13,000, according to researchers Vincent Nijman and Anna Nekaris of Oxford Brookes University in a paper in Global Ecology and Conservation. At around $10 to $30, the price tag is affordable to most middle-class families.

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Categories: Environment

40 years...

The Field Lab - Sat, 2017/08/12 - 1:42pm
My family moved to Tell City, Indiana when I was 8 years old.  We lived there for 7 years.  I had a lot of great friends I grew up with from 3rd grade on and it was tough to leave that experience behind when we moved to North Carolina right after my freshman year of high school.  I have since caught up with a lot of them on Facebook.  Since they graduated, a core group has been getting together every August - called the Last Man's Club.  This year they are celebrating their annual LMC gathering as well as their 40th high school reunion.  A few of them tried to convince me to attend but I decided not to go because it would be too much of a time warp for me.  Keep in mind - the last time I saw these guys we were all 16 years old and I knew most of them since 3rd grade...and they are all so old now!  Moving away when we did really sucked because I missed out on all the shared experience of growing old together with a group of childhood friends.  Since I blew off the reunion, I figured the least I could do is send them all a BE LIKE CHUPA mug.  Cheers!  89,97,75,0,B        
Categories: Sustainable SW Blogs

Grouse shooting: half a million reasons why time’s up for this appalling Victorian ‘sport’ | Mark Avery

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2017/08/12 - 12:55pm
Some 500,000 birds will have been shot by the end of another inglorious season as a select few continue to trample on the interests of the rest of us

After 150 years of being treated as a quaint rural pastime, grouse shooting is now under the microscope – unless it reforms it is doomed, and it may drag other country sports down with it.

On Saturday, the start of the grouse shooting season, the social media hashtag #inglorious12th was trending, and a social media message, “I want to see an end to raptor persecution in the uplands. Criminal activity needs to be stopped”, set up by 15-year-old birdwatcher and conservation campaigner Findlay Wilde, was sent to more than 11 million people.

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Categories: Environment

Protesters call for end to grouse shooting on Glorious Twelfth

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2017/08/12 - 7:46am

Thousands turn out in London and on Yorkshire moors as campaigners call for end to ‘killing for the psychopathic joy of it’

Thousands of people have taken to the streets of central London to protest against the start of Britain’s grouse shooting season.

Animal rights supporters are campaigning to end the sport, which would be their biggest breakthrough since MPs voted to ban fox hunting in 2004.

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Categories: Environment

Calif. Communities Impacted By Rising Seas File Climate Suit

NPR News - Environment - Sat, 2017/08/12 - 4:55am

Two California counties and the city of Imperial Beach filed a tobacco-style lawsuit against oil, gas and coal companies alleging they knew about climate change and misled the public.

Categories: Environment

Trump's EPA Has Rolled Back Dozens Of Environmental Regulations

NPR News - Environment - Sat, 2017/08/12 - 4:55am

Some Environmental Protection Agency employees have left under President Trump. NPR's Scott Simon talks with former Administrator of the EPA Gina McCarthy about recent policy changes.

Categories: Environment

Elephants unchained: 'The day has gone by when this was entertainment'

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2017/08/12 - 12:00am

As our understanding of the minds of our fellow species improves, will we increasingly look back at the way we have treated them in horror and repulsion?

  • Photographs by Karine Aigner

Water streams off the edges of her giant ears, runs in rivulets down the wrinkles of her slate-grey skin. She presses her whole head into the hose’s force, the spray welling into her mouth. As she drinks, she rubs her skin against the steel fence, her eyelids drooping luxuriously, her trunk relaxing. If ever I’ve seen a captive elephant happy, it’s Flora this morning.

There are no people laughing or pointing here at the Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee. There are no infants crying, no children arguing. The public are not allowed into the sanctuary, whose unofficial motto is, “Allow elephants to be elephants”: give them the freedom of choice, the freedom of large areas to explore, the freedom from human gawkers (apart from via the online elecams) while still providing the kind of care that comes with a zoo.

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Categories: Environment

World Elephant Day is a reminder of our moral duty to care for nature

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2017/08/11 - 9:00pm

Paula Kahumbu: Ending ivory trafficking should be at the heart of a new vision for Africa’s development

Today a life-sized ice sculpture of an African elephant will be placed in Union Square in Downtown Manhattan. Over the course of the day, this massive ice sculpture will gradually melt, symbolizing the alarming rate in which African elephants are continuing to disappear at the hands of poachers.

The event is one of many being organised across the world on 12 August to celebrate World Elephant Day. It is part of the campaign #DontLetThemDisappear launched by Amarula Trust in partnership with the Kenyan NGO WildlifeDirect to raise global awareness of the plight of Africa’s elephants.

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Categories: Environment

a friday night film

The Field Lab - Fri, 2017/08/11 - 8:56pm

Categories: Sustainable SW Blogs

Sadiq Khan criticised for backtracking on pledge for London public energy company

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2017/08/11 - 8:54am

Mayor is letting down Londoners by leaving out a manifesto pledge to create a not-for-profit energy company from his new environment strategy, say green groups

Campaigners have condemned the mayor of London’s new environment strategy for falling short by failing to announce the establishment of a publicly owned energy company for Londoners, one of his manifesto promises.

Sadiq Khan published his environment policy on Friday, which aims to turn the capital into a zero waste and zero emissions city by 2050 and ensure that more than half of the city is covered in parks and green spaces in the same time frame.

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Categories: Environment

Grouse moors 'to blame for Scotland's disappearing raptors'

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2017/08/11 - 7:22am

As estates gear up for Glorious Twelfth, wildlife crime expert talks of direct link between grouse moors and persecution of birds of prey

Grouse moors are to blame for persecuting endangered birds of prey in the Scottish Highlands and Uplands, according to a wildlife crime expert.

Ian Thomson, the head of investigations at the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds Scotland, said data from 77 birds of prey that had been satellite-tagged showed a direct correlation between dead and disappeared birds and grouse moors.

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Categories: Environment

Friday News Roundup - Domestic

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2017/08/11 - 7:06am

We're in New Orleans for the Friday News Round Up: a city that's dealing with serious flooding, and a widening scandal at city hall.

(Image credit: Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

Rustler steals 40,000 bees in Britain's biggest hive heist in years

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2017/08/11 - 6:20am

Only an experienced beekeeper could have pulled off raid in Anglesey ‘without getting stung to smithereens’, police say

An experienced beekeeper is suspected of stealing 40,000 bees from Anglesey in one of Britain’s biggest bee rustling cases in years.

Only someone with a bee suit and veil could have pulled off the heist on Paul Williams’s hive in Rhydwyn “without getting stung to smithereens”, police said.

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Categories: Environment

The week in wildlife – in pictures

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2017/08/11 - 6:00am

Playful gelada and inquisitive sea lions are among our pick of images from the natural world this week

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Categories: Environment
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