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Michael Gove demands end to Sheffield tree-felling programme

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2017/08/10 - 7:54am

City council accuses environment secretary of ‘ill-informed whims’ that contradict his government’s policy

Michael Gove has intervened in a long-running battle to try to stop a controversial tree-felling programme in Sheffield.

A number of Sheffield residents have been arrested trying to protect some of the 6,000 trees that face being chopped down as part of a 25-year £2bn highway maintenance scheme called Streets Ahead.

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Categories: Environment

Monsanto sold banned chemicals for years despite known health risks, archives reveal

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2017/08/10 - 3:41am

Company refutes legal analysis of documents suggesting it ignored risk to human health and environment long after pollutants’ lethal effects were known

Monsanto continued to produce and sell toxic industrial chemicals known as PCBs for eight years after learning that they posed hazards to public health and the environment, according to legal analysis of documents put online in a vast searchable archive.

More than 20,000 internal memos, minuted meetings, letters and other documents have been published in the new archive, many for the first time.

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Categories: Environment

Norway's push for Arctic oil and gas threatens Paris climate goals – study

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2017/08/10 - 3:37am

Noway’s role as the world’s biggest fossil fuel exporter undermines its efforts to cut emissions at home, says NGO report

Norway’s plan to ramp up oil and gas production in the Arctic threatens global efforts to tackle climate change, according to a new study.

The research says 12 gigatonnes of carbon could be added by exploration sites in the Barents Sea and elsewhere over the next 50 years, which is 1.5 times more than the Norwegian fields currently being tapped or under construction.

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Categories: Environment

Alaskan towns at risk from rising seas sound alarm as Trump pulls federal help

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2017/08/10 - 2:00am

Communities in danger of falling into the sea say assistance from Washington has dried up: ‘It feels like a complete abdication of responsibility on climate change’

The US government’s withdrawal from dealing with, or even acknowledging, climate change may have provoked widespread opprobrium, but for Alaskan communities at risk of toppling into the sea, the risks are rather more personal.

The Trump administration has moved to dismantle climate adaptation programs including the Denali Commission, an Anchorage-based agency that is crafting a plan to safeguard or relocate dozens of towns at risk from rising sea levels, storms and the winnowing away of sea ice.

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Categories: Environment

Sailing To The North Pole, Thanks To Global Warming

NPR News - Environment - Thu, 2017/08/10 - 2:00am

A crew plans to leave Nome, Alaska Thursday and sail to the North Pole. The voyage may now be possible due to sea ice melt in the Arctic caused by climate change.

Categories: Environment

The rise of electric cars could leave us with a big battery waste problem

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2017/08/10 - 1:15am

Carmakers, recyclers and tech start ups are working to solve the question of how to deal with lithium-ion batteries when they wear out

The drive to replace polluting petrol and diesel cars with a new breed of electric vehicles has gathered momentum in recent weeks. But there is an unanswered environmental question at the heart of the electric car movement: what on earth to do with their half-tonne lithium-ion batteries when they wear out?

British and French governments last month committed to outlaw the sale of petrol- and diesel-powered cars by 2040, and carmaker Volvo pledged to only sell electric or hybrid vehicles from 2019.

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Categories: Environment

Scientists hope to breed Asian ‘unicorns’ – if they can find them

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2017/08/10 - 12:42am

Conservationists see only one hope for the saola: a risky captive breeding programme

In 1996, William Robichaud spent three weeks with Martha before she died. Robichaud studied Martha – a beautiful, enigmatic, shy saola – with a scientist’s eye but also fell under the gracile animal’s spell as she ate out of his hand and allowed herself to be stroked. Captured by local hunters, Martha spent those final days in a Laotian village, doted on by Robichaud.

Since losing Martha, Robichaud has become the coordinator of the Saola Working Group (SWG) at the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). He has dedicated his life to saving this critically endangered species – and believes the best chance to achieve that now is through a captive breeding programme.

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Categories: Environment

'It's absurd': new gas import terminal for one of world's biggest gas exporters

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2017/08/09 - 11:53pm

Skyrocketing Australian gas prices are behind AGL plans to build a $250m LNG import terminal south of Melbourne

As Australia ramps up to become one of the world’s biggest gas exporters, skyrocketing local gas prices are driving one company to build a new gas import terminal, highlighting an apparently absurd situation for local gas users.

On Thursday AGL announced it had come closer to realising its plans to build a $250m LNG import terminal, nominating a port 80km south of Melbourne as its preferred location.

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Categories: Environment

'They don't care': Indian government accused of prejudice by Chakma people

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2017/08/09 - 9:00pm

Families living on riverbanks of north-east India claim pleas for help following devastating floods have been ignored on religious and racial grounds

The Indian government has been accused of religious and racial discrimination after members of the Chakma ethnic group said their pleas for help following the devastating floods and landslides that swept the country’s north-east have fallen on deaf ears.

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Categories: Environment

Firefighting foam blood test should be given to Katherine residents, mayor says

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2017/08/09 - 7:55pm

NT town’s drinking water is contaminated by foam from air force base but federal government is resisting calls to fund tests

The Northern Territory government and the Katherine mayor have called for locals to be given the same blood testing and support provided to other communities impacted by Defence’s firefighting foam contamination scandal.

Drinking water in the town of Katherine, in the territory’s top end, has been contaminated by the decades-long use of toxic firefighting foam at the nearby Tindal air force base.

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Categories: Environment

14 CFR § 107.61

The Field Lab - Wed, 2017/08/09 - 5:41pm
As long as I am at it...might as well get a commercial drone license so I can legally earn some money with my Mavic Pro.  Studying to pass the knowledge test to earn a Remote Pilot Certificate with a Small UAS Rating from the FAA.  This will also involve a road trip as the nearest testing center is in Big Spring about 60 miles east of Odessa.  (Maybe I will stop by and visit Medical Center Hospital where they patched up my leg.)  88,92,73,0,B
Categories: Sustainable SW Blogs

Hurricane Franklin, First Of Atlantic Season, Barrels Toward Mexico's Coast

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2017/08/09 - 5:19pm

The storm is expected to make landfall north of Veracruz, where it could dump as much as 15 inches of rain, causing "life-threatening flash floods and mudslides."

(Image credit: Felix Marquez/AP)

Categories: Environment

UK named as world's largest legal ivory exporter

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2017/08/09 - 4:31pm

A new trade analysis reveals the scale of Britain’s role in the international ivory trade

Britain was the world’s largest exporter of legal ivory between 2010 and 2015, a breakdown of records held by the Convention on international trade in endangered species (Cites) has revealed.

Not only did the UK export more ivory than anyone else to Hong Kong and China – which are considered smuggling hubs for “blood ivory” - it also sold on 370% more ivory than the next highest exporter, the USA.

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Categories: Environment

The right language to protect the natural world | Letters

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2017/08/09 - 11:50am
Readers respond to George Monbiot’s recent article and news that the US Department of Agriculture is censoring use of term ‘climate change’

George Monbiot’s call to reconsider how we name things (Forget ‘the environment’. Fight for our living planet, 9 August) is a timely contribution to a confusing world. But one word that both he and the majority of online contributors have ignored is “prosperity”. That, after all, is why humans engage in economic activity: they believe it will make things better. There is, however, a fundamental problem with the way we have arranged our economic affairs. By treating the natural world as an infinite thing, “external” to the economy (except as a never-ending supply of resources) we have built a massive endeavour to take natural resources and make them into things that are then disposed of, generally after a fairly brief period of human enjoyment.

Everyone I speak to readily accepts that under this system the planet must eventually “run out”, but they cannot see an alternative to “prosperity”. The conversation we need to have is not how we name things but how we do things.

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Categories: Environment

UK set for month's rainfall in a day as flooding threat persists

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2017/08/09 - 10:47am

East Riding of Yorkshire and north-east Lincolnshire among areas hardest hit, with severe downpours expected

A month’s worth of rain was set to fall on the UK on Wednesday as severe downpours brought flooding to large parts of the country. Flash flooding hit towns and villages in the East Riding of Yorkshire and north-east Lincolnshire. There was a metre (3ft) of standing water in parts of Withernsea, and further flooding in the Grimsby and Immingham areas.

The Humberside fire and rescue service said it responded to calls on Tuesday evening from Bridlington to Hull, and from towns south of the river Humber. Grimsby Town’s League Cup football match with Derby County had to be abandoned on Tuesday night because of the heavy rain.

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Categories: Environment

Morrisons promises not to adopt brands using fake farm names

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2017/08/09 - 10:21am

Move follows NFU criticism of practice and consumer calls for genuine labelling

Supermarket chain Morrisons has pledged to support real British farmers by not adopting brands using fake farm names after a backlash by the National Farmers’ Union and concerns by shoppers.

Morrisons announced its intention after a 70% of adults said in a survey by the company they objected to the use of fictitious farm brands and only wanted genuine place or farm names on packaging and branding.

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Categories: Environment

When Oceans Give You Jellyfish Blooms, Turn Them Into Tasty Chips

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2017/08/09 - 8:35am

Scientists think human pressures on oceans could cause more jellyfish blooms. What to do? Eat them, says a Danish gastrophysicist who has cracked the science of making them palatable.

(Image credit: Courtesy of Kristoff Styrbæk)

Categories: Environment

Marauding elephant could be shot after killing 15 people in India

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2017/08/09 - 4:00am

Wildlife officials say something must be done to end animal’s months-long rampage that has left villagers living in fear

An elephant that has killed 15 people in eastern India over a months-long rampage could be shot within days if it is not brought under control, an official has said.

Wildlife rangers and hunters assembled in Jharkhand on Wednesday after another victim was trampled to death on Tuesday evening, said the state’s chief forest and wildlife conservator, LR Singh.

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Categories: Environment

GM salmon hits shelves in Canada – but people may not know they're buying it

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2017/08/09 - 2:00am

AquaBounty salmon was approved for sale in Canada in 2016, paving the way for it to become the first genetically engineered animal to enter the food supply

Canadian supermarkets have become the first in the world to stock genetically modified fish, and about five tonnes of GM salmon have been sold in the country in recent months.

The sales figure was revealed in the most recent earnings report of the US-based AquaBounty Technologies, whose hybrid Atlantic salmon – which contains a gene from a Chinook salmon and a gene from the ocean pout – has been at the heart of a heated debate over transgenic animals as food.

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Categories: Environment

‘Indigenous peoples are the best guardians of world's biodiversity’

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2017/08/09 - 1:36am

Interview with UN Special Rapporteur Victoria Tauli-Corpuz to mark the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples

Today is the United Nations’ (UN) International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples, numbering an estimated 370 million in 90 countries and speaking roughly 7,000 languages. To mark it, the Guardian interviews Kankanaey Igorot woman Victoria Tauli-Corpuz about the UN’s Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which she calls “historic” and was adopted 10 years ago.

Tauli-Corpuz, from the Philippines, was Chair of the UN Permanent Forum of Indigenous Issues when the Declaration was adopted, and is currently the UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. In this interview, conducted via email, she explains why the Declaration is so important, argues that governments are failing to implement it, and claims that the struggle for indigenous rights “surpasses” other great social movements of the past:

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Categories: Environment
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