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a friday night film

The Field Lab - Fri, 2019/10/11 - 3:06pm
Categories: Sustainable SW Blogs

Wildfires Continue To Burn, Force Evacuations In Southern California

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2019/10/11 - 2:20pm

Wildfires in Southern California have burned dozens of homes overnight and are forcing mandatory evacuations. They're being fueled by dry conditions and fanned by 70 mph winds.

Categories: Environment

Intentional Blackouts In Northern California Continue

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2019/10/11 - 1:18pm

The intentional blackout in northern California is now in its third day. The longer it lasts, the harder it is for residents, businesses, and governments to cope.

Categories: Environment

Moderate Liberals urged to break ranks and vote for climate emergency motion

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2019/10/11 - 12:00pm

Adam Bandt says every MP ‘capable of supporting this motion’ since it does not condemn the government

The Greens have intensified efforts ahead of the return of federal parliament next week to lobby moderate Liberals to break ranks and vote for a motion declaring a climate emergency.

With parliament set to resume on Monday, the lower house Greens MP Adam Bandt has written to all parliamentarians in the House urging them to support the climate emergency motion, which would be seconded by independent Zali Steggall, and has the support of most of the crossbench.

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Categories: Environment

The Guardian view on the polluters: days of reckoning | Editorial

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2019/10/11 - 10:30am
Fossil fuel companies have worked for decades to shape attitudes and undermine science. The crisis dictates that they must now be confronted

The huge differences in the voting records of MPs on climate issues, revealed in the Guardian’s rankings today, should immediately disabuse anyone of the notion that Britain’s elected politicians are united – apart from a handful of contrarians – in their efforts to limit global heating.

True, a consensus exists in the UK and most of Europe with regard to the necessity of cutting emissions. That is in stark contrast to countries such as the US and Australia, where leading politicians deny climate science and promote fossil fuel extraction. But acceptance of the evidence that shows the next decade will be crucial for efforts to restrict global temperature rises to 1.5C is the basis for action, not a substitute for it. Politicians should be judged on what they do. And our research shows that the voting record of most Conservative MPs over the past decade, on 16 parliamentary divisions ranging from fracking to renewable energy subsidies and vehicle emissions, is abysmal. They are five times more likely to vote against climate measures than MPs from other parties, with the prime minister, Boris Johnson, among several dozen MPs to get the lowest possible score of zero.

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Categories: Environment

The week in wildlife – in pictures

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2019/10/11 - 8:53am

A stockpiling squirrel, a lolling black bear and a greater bilby returned to the wild

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Categories: Environment

EPA Proposes New Regulations For Lead In Drinking Water

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2019/10/11 - 8:08am

The new proposal is being criticized for not proactively replacing lead service lines across the nation. It also keeps the same threshold for lead in drinking water that the U.S. currently has.

(Image credit: Paul Sancya/AP)

Categories: Environment

Will a push for plastics turn Appalachia into next ‘Cancer Alley’?

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2019/10/11 - 6:13am

Critics say ethane expansion will not only prolong fracking but could also trigger a public health disaster

Construction cranes climb into the sky and sprawl across the massive petrochemical facility that will turn a byproduct of fracked gas into plastic on the banks of the Ohio River, just outside Pittsburgh.

Even at a distance, from the car park of a cancer treatment centre on a nearby hilltop, Royal Dutch Shell’s 386-acre site is a behemoth. It will anchor yet more gas, plastics and chemicals infrastructure in the tristate region of Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia.

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Categories: Environment

Political polarisation over climate crisis has surged under Trump

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2019/10/11 - 6:00am

Revealed: divide exacerbated by fossil fuel industry’s record contribution to Republicans

Donald Trump’s presidency has ushered in an era of unprecedented polarisation between Republican and Democrat lawmakers when it comes to voting on measures to tackle the climate crisis, while the fossil fuel industry now almost entirely favours Republicans in campaign contributions.

The two main US political parties regularly voted along the same lines on clean air and clean water provisions in the 1970s but started to diverge in the 1990s. They now occupy opposite ends of the spectrum, according to data collated by the nonpartisan group the League of Conservation Voters (LCV).

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Categories: Environment

Guardian climate score: how did your MP do?

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2019/10/11 - 6:00am

Use our interactive tool to explore MPs’ records on 16 climate votes

Parliament declared a climate emergency in May, but what do MPs’ voting records indicate about their commitment to the issue?

The Guardian’s climate ranking shows readers their MP’s record on 16 indicative climate votes between 2008 and 2018. Each MP has been assigned a score between 0% and 100% based on their voting record, represented as a dot on the graphic below.

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Categories: Environment

Border Wall Construction In Arizona Bulldozes Cactus Columns

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2019/10/11 - 2:10am

President Trump's border wall is going up between Arizona and Mexico, and it's generating controversy because of its proximity to the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument and Native Americans lands.

Categories: Environment

Revealed: Google made large contributions to climate change deniers

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2019/10/10 - 11:00pm

Firm’s public calls for climate action contrast with backing for conservative thinktanks

Google has made “substantial” contributions to some of the most notorious climate deniers in Washington despite its insistence that it supports political action on the climate crisis.

Among hundreds of groups the company has listed on its website as beneficiaries of its political giving are more than a dozen organisations that have campaigned against climate legislation, questioned the need for action, or actively sought to roll back Obama-era environmental protections.

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Categories: Environment

The obscure law that explains why Google backs climate deniers

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2019/10/10 - 11:00pm

Company wants to curry favour with conservatives to protect its ‘section 230’ legal immunity

When Eric Schmidt was asked on a radio show in 2014 why Google was supporting an ultra-conservative climate-denying pressure group in Washington, the then chairman of the internet giant offered an unequivocal response: it was wrong and Google was not going to do it again.

“The consensus within the company was that that was some sort of mistake and so we’re trying to not do that in the future,” Schmidt told NPR. People who opposed or questioned climate science were making the world “a much worse place”, he added, and Google “should not be aligned with such people”.

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Categories: Environment

Josh Frydenberg rejects IMF report that Australia will fail to meet Paris target

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2019/10/10 - 8:42pm

Treasurer says Australia will meet Paris target without carbon price, despite IMF analysis

Josh Frydenberg has rejected the International Monetary Fund’s warning that Australia will fail to meet its Paris agreement emissions reduction target even with a carbon price of US$75 a ton.

The IMF made the observation in a report on mitigating climate change which concluded that a carbon tax is still a more cost-effective solution than “feebate” models, which impose fees on activities with above-average emissions and subsidise those with below-average emissions.

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Categories: Environment

If the shoo fits: cows painted with zebra stripes keep flies in line

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2019/10/10 - 5:29pm

Insect bites can be significantly cut using a cunning disguise, researchers find

Painting a cow to look something like a zebra has been found to reduce fly bites by 50%.

Researchers believe painting stripes on to cattle is a world-first and could become an environmentally friendly alternative to pesticides.

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Categories: Environment

Trump administration's new lead rules in water dismissed as 'window dressing'

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2019/10/10 - 2:51pm

Critics say rules give water systems decades more time to replace dangerous pipes and fail to boost urgency for cleaning up lead

The Trump administration is proposing new rules for lead in drinking water, overhauling the regulations for the first time in three decades, following crises in Flint, Michigan, and other US communities, but critics say the changes appear to give water systems decades more time to replace pipes leaching dangerous amounts of toxic lead.

The Environmental Protection Agency would require water systems to notify customers if levels exceed 15 parts per billion. And it would require water testing at schools and daycares.

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Categories: Environment

The ceiling is finished...

The Field Lab - Thu, 2019/10/10 - 2:51pm
86,91,58,0,B
Categories: Sustainable SW Blogs

US mayors seek to bypass Trump with direct role at UN climate talks

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2019/10/10 - 10:32am

‘If cities are invited to be at the table, I believe they will help accelerate the work that needs to be done’ said LA mayor Eric Garcetti

US mayors are seeking to go over President Trump’s head and negotiate directly at next month’s UN climate change conference in Santiago, they said as they met in Copenhagen for the C40 World Mayors Summit.

Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti, who rallied US mayors to commit to the Paris climate agreement after Trump announced his intention to withdraw the country in 2017, said he would ask the UN secretary general, António Guterres, on Thursday to give American cities a new role in UN climate talks.

“I’m going to bring it up with the UN secretary general,” Garcetti said. “If cities are invited to be at the table, I believe they will help accelerate the work that needs to be done. Hopefully, we can do it in concert with our national governments, but [we can do it] even where there is conflict.”

Garcetti, who was announced on Wednesday as the next chair of the C40 group of global cities, said he would use his position to seek “a more formal role in the deliberations” at the conference.

“The United Nations works directly with cities all the time ... so they shouldn’t feel feel scared about jumping down to that local level,” he said.

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Categories: Environment

Where the blame lies for the climate crisis | Letters

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2019/10/10 - 10:02am
Readers respond to the report revealing the 20 biggest polluters responsible for a third of all global carbon emissions

Your article (Revealed: the 20 firms behind a third of all global carbon emissions, 10 October) highlights the biggest polluters and contributors to the climate crisis over the last half-century – the “uncooperative crusties” of capitalism. It is these companies that are standing in the way of progress. But we shouldn’t just look at the carbon they have pumped into the atmosphere, but also the money – our money, in banks and pension funds – that they have invested and the power that huge amount of capital gives them. They can choose to either transform their businesses into something positive for the planet or to extend the shelf life of a carbon-based business model well past its best-before date.

This week, the Treasury select committee asked me, ShareAction and the UK Sustainable Investment and Finance Association what investors can do about the oil and gas industry. My answer was that we need to use more than just persuasion. Our money can shape the strategies of these companies directly. Savvy investors should back those that respond to change, not the ones who deny the urgency.

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Categories: Environment

Energy bills will have to rise sharply to avoid climate crisis, says IMF

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2019/10/10 - 9:42am

Fund says governments could use money to help vulnerable people or invest in green energy

Avoiding dangerous global heating will require governments around the world to impose stringent taxes on fossil-fuel usage that will mean a 43% jump in household energy bills over the next decade, the International Monetary Fund has said.

The Washington-based Fund said the battle against climate change could only be won if the average carbon tax levied by its member states increased from $2 (£1.63) a ton (907kg) to $75 a ton.

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Categories: Environment
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