Biden To Move Quickly On Climate Change, Reversing Trump Rollbacks

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2021/01/20 - 3:04pm

President Biden has set his sights on more than 100 Trump administration environmental rollbacks as well as plans to rejoin the international climate accord.

(Image credit: Alex Edelman/AFP via Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

Massachusetts Voters Share Their Hopes For New Administration

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2021/01/20 - 2:30pm

Some Massachusetts voters hope that the Biden administration will do better on protecting the environment and managing the pandemic. But some say they fear President Biden may be too moderate.

Categories: Environment

Biden Order Blocks Keystone XL Pipeline

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2021/01/20 - 11:45am

This likely means the end of the $8 billion pipeline, a years-long project that would have carried oil sands crude from Alberta, Canada, to the American Gulf Coast.

(Image credit: Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

Biden's Plan To Undo Trump's Last-Minute Deregulatory Spree & Enact A Climate Agenda

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2021/01/20 - 11:38am

Trump called climate change a hoax. Biden calls it an existential threat. Washington Post journalist Juliet Eilperin talks about how Biden might reverse some of his predecessor's policies.

Categories: Environment

Wild lynx could be reintroduced into Scottish Highlands

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2021/01/20 - 10:03am

Study tests public support for bringing back species after 500-year absence, while farmers fear for sheep

A consortium of conservationists that hopes to release wild lynx into the Scottish Highlands has launched a year-long study to see whether the public supports their reintroduction.

The study, part-funded by two billionaire Danish estate owners in the Highlands, Anders Povlsen and Lisbet Rausing, will test whether farmers, landowners and rural communities will agree to a pilot project in a remote area of Scotland.

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Categories: Environment

Coal seam gas company pushes to drill hundreds of new wells at off-limits Queensland site

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2021/01/20 - 9:30am

Arrow Energy is seeking to amend its environmental authority at Hopeland, where one of the state’s worst contamination disasters occurred

A coal seam gas company has proposed drilling hundreds of new wells in an area the Queensland government previously declared off-limits after one of the state’s worst environmental contamination disasters.

Arrow Energy, a joint venture between Shell and PetroChina, has lodged an application to amend its environmental authority for a petroleum lease at Hopeland in the western downs, which forms part of the company’s Surat gas project.

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Categories: Environment

Subalpine regions struggle to recover after 2019-20 bushfires as eucalypt forests fare better

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2021/01/20 - 9:30am

The Bushfire Recovery Project, led by five scientists, is tracking forest regrowth in NSW and Victoria using data gathered by citizen scientists

Forests in some subalpine areas near Mount Kosciuszko and in Victoria’s East Gippsland region are struggling to recover from the 2019-20 bushfires, according to researchers examining the aftermath of the disaster.

But eucalypts in forested areas of the New South Wales south coast appear to be recovering well, say the scientists, who are tracking the sites using data gathered by groups of citizen scientists.

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Categories: Environment

Sweden to build reindeer bridges over roads and railways

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2021/01/20 - 6:16am

‘Renoducts’ will help animals who have to roam further for food due to global heating

Sweden is to build up to a dozen bridges so reindeer can safely cross railway lines and major roads in the north of the country as global heating forces them to roam further afield in search of food.

State broadcaster SVT said the transport authority aimed to start work on the first of the new bridges, named “renoducts”, a portmanteau from ren (reindeer) and viaduct, later this year near the eastern city of Umea.

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Categories: Environment

'One of a kind': calls to protect Alabama's 60,000-year-old underwater forest

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2021/01/20 - 3:30am

Efforts are under way to designate site of submerged forest off the Alabama coast a marine sanctuary

When divers jump into a particular stretch of water off the coast of Alabama, they travel back to a time before humans arrived in North America.

Submerged below the waters are the remains of a cypress tree forest that grew 60,000 years ago, but was inundated by the Gulf of Mexico and preserved from decomposition beneath sediment. Nothing like Alabama’s underwater forest, in terms of age or scale, has ever been found.

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Categories: Environment

Climate Change Concerns Prompt Americans To Consider Relocating

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2021/01/20 - 3:04am

As climate impacts worsen, some people are moving to other parts of the country that they hope won't suffer as much. Town planners in New Hampshire are already preparing for a possible influx.

Categories: Environment

Severe heatwave and high bushfire danger forecast ahead of Australia Day

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2021/01/19 - 9:47pm

Weather forecast to ease by Australia Day after ‘big burst of summer heat’

A burst of heat is set to sear much of Australia ahead of the Australia Day long weekend, sending temperatures soaring and sparking bushfire concerns.

The Bureau of Meteorology is forecasting a severe heatwave to settle across much of the south-east of the country, with temperatures set to be up to 15C above average.

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Categories: Environment

Union Pushing Keystone XL Faces Racial Discrimination Suit

NPR News - Environment - Tue, 2021/01/19 - 5:17pm

Pipeliners Local 798, which represents thousands of workers on projects across the country, has a history of racism and faces new allegations it discriminated against Black members.

(Image credit: Nate Hegyi/Yellowstone Public Radio)

Categories: Environment

Powerful winds spark new blazes in California's year-round fire 'season'

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2021/01/19 - 2:46pm

Warm winter weather and strong gusts have led to an early start for 2021’s fires, following a record-breaking year of blazes in 2020

Unusually warm and dry conditions coupled with powerful wind gusts have ignited a spate of winter wildfires that call into question the idea that California has a “fire season” at all any more.

Residents of several communities in the Santa Cruz mountains were ordered to evacuate by the local sheriff’s office Tuesday morning as California’s fire agency, Cal Fire, responded to more than a dozen new vegetation fires across the area. Some of the fires were ignited when power lines were toppled by high winds; others were wind-driven reignitions of areas that burned in 2020, Cal Fire said. By midday Tuesday, six fires in the area were still burning.

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Categories: Environment

Greater Manchester declares major incident in preparation for Storm Christoph

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2021/01/19 - 11:58am

Met Office issues amber weather warning as South Yorkshire also declares major incident

Greater Manchester has become the latest area to declare a major incident as swathes of central and northern England brace for the arrival of Storm Christoph.

South Yorkshire has also declared a major incident in preparation for potential flooding. The Met Office issued an amber weather warning for rain between Tuesday and Thursday for an area covering Manchester, Leeds and Sheffield and stretching down to Peterborough.

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Categories: Environment

Shell pulls out of joint venture to build UK sustainable jet fuels plant

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2021/01/19 - 10:54am

Withdrawal a blow to Boris Johnson’s desire for UK to achieve first zero-emission long-haul flight

Shell has pulled out of a joint venture with British Airways and Velocys to build a flagship sustainable jet fuels plant in the UK – in a blow to Boris Johnson’s claims that Britain could deliver the world’s first zero-emission long-haul flight.

The oil firm was named last year as one of the top companies set to “turbocharge government plans” for sustainable aviation fuels, the centrepiece of the so-called “jet zero” plan to decarbonise flights.

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Categories: Environment

Global sales of electric cars accelerate fast in 2020 despite pandemic

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2021/01/19 - 10:23am

Sales of electric cars rose by 43% while overall car sales slumped by a fifth last year

Global sales of electric cars accelerated fast in 2020, rising by 43% to more than 3m, despite overall car sales slumping by a fifth during the coronavirus pandemic.

Tesla was the brand selling the most electric cars, delivering almost 500,000, followed by Volkswagen. Sales of electric cars more than doubled in Europe, pushing the region past China as the world’s biggest market for them, according to data published on Tuesday by EV-volumes.com, a Sweden-based consultancy.

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Categories: Environment

The nature of the sphinx moth: 'it uses its big-ass tongue to get this guy pollinated' | Helen Sullivan

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2021/01/19 - 9:30am

Some species feed on nectar or honey. Others drink the tears of horses and people

In The Writing Life, Annie Dillard is watching a sphinx moth preparing to take off. She is on a ship. On its railing there is “a heavy-bodied moth panting”. Dillard is summoning the strength to continue writing her book. The moth is raising its temperature so that it can fly.

Sphinx moths (also called hawk moths) have small wings in proportion to their bodies. Some species are so big, and move their small wings so fast, and hover so effortlessly, that they are sometimes mistaken for hummingbirds.

“Beside me on the rail, the sphinx moth raced its engines for takeoff like a jet on a runway,” writes Dillard. “I could see its brown body vibrate and its red-and-black wings tremble.”

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Categories: Environment

Supreme Court Considers Baltimore Suit Against Oil Companies Over Climate Change

NPR News - Environment - Tue, 2021/01/19 - 9:12am

Overwhelmed sewers. Flooded streets. Deadly heat waves. Baltimore is one of many American cities where the costs of climate change far exceed local resources. Should oil companies pay?

(Image credit: Ryan Kellman/NPR)

Categories: Environment

Wildfires having devastating effect on air quality in western US, study finds

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2021/01/19 - 8:05am

Blazes, intensified by the climate crisis, are reversing decades of gains in cutting air pollution, scientists report

Increasingly ferocious wildfires in the western US are taking a devastating toll on the region’s air quality, with wildfire smoke now accounting for half of all air pollution during the worst wildfire years, according to a new study.

Scientists from Stanford University and the University of California, San Diego, found that toxic plumes of smoke, which can blanket western states for weeks when wildfires are raging, are reversing decades of gains in cutting air pollution. While heat-related deaths have previously been predicted as the worst consequence of the climate crisis, researchers say that air pollution caused by smoke could be just as deadly.

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Categories: Environment

Energy agency forecasts lower demand for oil as Covid cases surge

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2021/01/19 - 7:12am

Influential IEA cuts forecasts for rebound in market as new lockdowns bite

World oil demand will be lower than forecast this year as a surge in new coronavirus cases looks likely to keep restrictions on the global economy in place, the International Energy Agency has said.

The agency warned that a string of new lockdowns across big economies will keep a lid on oil demand over the first months of the year, before the impact of Covid-19 vaccines begins to take effect in the second half.

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Categories: Environment
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