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Turtle on edge of extinction after sudden attack by mystery disease

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 4:06pm

Scientists cannot explain why the Bellinger river snapping turtle has been all but wiped out by a mysterious disease with a 100% mortality rate

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Categories: Environment

Alaska reopens online window on world of the walrus

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 12:58pm

A timely grant means a live stream is back online and Round Island, where 14,000 male walruses gather every year, can welcome visitors once more

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Endangered species found in Devon raid

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 12:08pm

Stuffed animals including a tiger’s head and birds of prey are seized by National Crime Agency officers

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Shell boss endorses warnings about fossil fuels and climate change

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 11:31am

Ben van Beurden agrees that we need to capture the carbon emissions of fossil fuel reserves, but predicts that the world will be ‘zero carbon’ by the century’s end

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California oil spill: cleanup crews work around the clock - video

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 8:39am
Crews clean up the California coast for a third day on Friday after an estimated 477 litres of oil leaked from a broken pipeline in the Pacific ocean off Santa Barbara. The cause of the leak has yet to be determined. Cleanup operations are continuing around the clock as rescuers try to save wildlife trapped in the oil Continue reading...
Categories: Environment

Axa to divest from high-risk coal funds due to threat of climate change

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 8:30am

Insurance company to move £350m out of coal companies and triple investments in green technologies

The insurance company Axa has said it will remove around €500m (£355m) of coal investments from its portfolio, in a move that reflects long-term concerns in the insurance industry over climate change.

The company has also pledged to triple its investments in green technologies and services to more than €3bn by 2020 and provide investors with more information on the risk to its investments from climate change.

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The week in wildlife – in pictures

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 8:05am

A fox facing up to a pride of lions, Tibetan antelope and sleeping koalas feature in this week’s pick of images from the natural world

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Chimps losing lives and limbs to the 'landmines of the forest'

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 6:22am

Specialised rangers risk their lives to rid Kibale National Park of snares, which maim and kill chimpanzees, elephants, and wild cats

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Pipeline Operator: Possibly Months To Determine Cause Of Calif. Spill

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 6:04am

Plains All American, the company that operates the pipeline, says it has yet to uncover the problem. So far, 9,000 gallons of sludge have been removed from a 9-mile stretch near Santa Barbara.

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Seeds of Time - preserving food resources in a hot future climate

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 6:00am

A new movie explores plans to preserve future food production

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Saudi Arabia's solar-for-oil plan is a ray of hope

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 5:45am

Talk by the world’s biggest oil exporter of giving up fossil fuels and embracing solar and wind energy adds momentum towards a global climate change deal

So what to make of the statement by Saudi Arabia’s oil minister that the world’s biggest oil exporter could stop using fossil fuels as soon as 2040 and become a “global power” in solar and wind energy?

Ali Al-Naimi’s statement is striking as Saudi Arabia’s wealth and influence is entirely founded on its huge oil wealth and the nation has been one of the strongest voices against climate change action at UN summits.

Related: Saudi Arabia reveals plans to be powered entirely by renewable energy

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Denton, Texas, banned fracking last year – then the frackers fought back

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 5:27am

State’s Republican politicians counter anti-fracking insurgency by banning the ban, as critics say ‘they’ve just handed the golden ticket to oil and gas’

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EU dropped pesticide laws due to US pressure over TTIP, documents reveal

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 3:58am

US trade officials pushed EU to shelve action on endocrine-disrupting chemicals linked to cancer and male infertility to facilitate TTIP free trade deal

EU moves to regulate hormone-damaging chemicals linked to cancer and male infertility were shelved following pressure from US trade officials over the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) free trade deal, newly released documents show.

Draft EU criteria could have banned 31 pesticides containing endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs). But these were dumped amid fears of a trade backlash stoked by an aggressive US lobby push, access to information documents obtained by Pesticides Action Network (PAN) Europe show.

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Categories: Environment

University of Hawaii System votes to divest from fossil fuels

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 3:50am

In our latest Keep it in the ground update, Hawaii university says it will divest its $66m fund from fossil fuels, we launch our Climate Publishers Network, plus how to join in our next live event

The University of Hawaii System has announced it will divest its $66m (£42m) endowment from oil, coal and gas companies, following a vote by its board of regents on Thursday.

It becomes the 30th higher education institution in the world to join the fast-growing global fossil fuel divestment movement. The campaign, which started in September 2013, brought together more than 1,300 supporters including students, faculty and board members.

Thanks to 25 news orgs agreeing to share #climatechange content ahead of #COP21 http://t.co/6mbNga4w5n We need public support for ambition!

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Welcome to Baoding, China's most polluted city

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 2:24am

In February, Baoding was given the unwanted title of having the worst air quality in the whole of China. Jennifer Duggan pays a visit – and discovers a city desperate to reinvent itself as a pioneer of renewable energy

How China’s pollution problem impacts on its people - in pictures

It is a rare blue-skied day in the city of Baoding, in north-eastern China. It’s not even that clear, but the hazy sky is as blue as it gets here. Most days, the sky is obscured by a thick blanket of smog.

Baoding, a city of 10 million people, was named in February as China’s most polluted city by the Ministry of Environmental Protection, based on air pollution figures gathered for 2014. By mid-May of this year, the city had only enjoyed 16 days of air quality that could be considered “good” by the official classification.

It was much better when I was young – the air was very clean. We rarely see blue skies now

The great irony is that, in 2010, Baoding was named ​as ​a pilot of China’s project to introduce low-carbon ​zones

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Climate change blamed for severe drought hitting Vietnam's coffee crops

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 2:04am

Exports drop 40% as world’s second-biggest coffee exporter suffers rising temperatures and drought, combined with effects of deforestation, land degradation and depleted water resources caused by decades of growth

The last time Nguyen Van Viet saw water in his well was almost four months ago. The 44-year-old has farmed coffee in central Vietnam for two decades and says that’s never happened before.

“This is the worst drought I’ve seen in over a decade,” Viet, told the Guardian. “Some people don’t have enough water to drink.”

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Revealed: The Ocean's Tiniest Life At The Bottom Of The Food Chain

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 12:55am

The ocean's tiniest inhabitants — including bacteria, plankton, krill — are food for most everything that swims or floats. Now, scientists have completed a count of this vast and diverse hidden world.

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Test ride: road bikes from web-only companies Canyon, Rose and Planet X

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 12:20am

Does the value-for-money benefits of a bike bought online trump not being able to test-ride it? We try road bikes from Canyon, Rose and Planet X

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Attacks on the last elephants and rhinos threaten entire ecosystems

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/05/22 - 12:00am

Megafauna like elephants and rhinos are ecological engineers, creating conditions that hundreds of other species have evolved to exploit. Losing their last remaining populations will radically alter life on Earth

When I read about the attacks on the world’s remaining elephants and rhinos, the first thought that enters my head is: “these creatures used to be everywhere.” Almost every area of land and sea, in every region of the world, had a megafauna.

Elephants lived throughout Europe, Asia, Africa and America until very recently in ecological time (30,000 years ago in Europe, 14,000 years ago in the Americas). Rhinos lived across Africa, Asia and Europe. Temperate forest rhinos lived in Britain during previous interglacials, and woolly rhinos lived here in colder periods. Russia was haunted by two gigantic species: humpbacked rhinos the size of elephants, eight feet to the crest, weighing perhaps five tonnes.

Related: The idea that hunting saves African wildlife doesn't withstand scrutiny

Related: A picture of loneliness: you are looking at the last male northern white rhino | Jonathan Jones

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Categories: Environment

Gilberto Torres survived Colombia's death squads. Now he wants justice

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2015/05/21 - 11:58pm

He is one of only two Colombian union activists to be abducted by paramilitaries and live. Now BP and other oil firms face allegations they were complicit in human rights abuses

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