Birdwatching doesn’t make me forget Covid, but it helps me see life anew | Debbie Lustig

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2021/10/04 - 9:48pm

In lockdown, every day is the same. Unless it’s a day when a bird has visited – these I recall instantly, and with joy

Last month, events in Melbourne took a memorable turn, for all the wrong reasons. Protests and the earthquake fed more tension into our interminable, sixth lockdown. But for me nothing equalled what happened one morning, when a spotted pardalote appeared through the window outside my living room.

It’s hard to describe the thrill of seeing such an exquisite bird so close. I’d heard one for months, tinkling its three-note call all over the neighbourhood, but could only look for it in vain.

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Categories: Environment

Third new coal project approved by Australian environment minister Sussan Ley in just one month

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2021/10/04 - 6:28pm

Approval granted for Mangoola Coal to extract 52m tonnes over eight years – weeks before major global talks on climate crisis

The Morrison government has been accused of demonstrating it is not taking the climate crisis seriously after approving a third new coalmine development in a month shortly before a major international conference on the issue.

With global climate talks in Glasgow less than four weeks away, the environment minister, Sussan Ley, has given a subsidiary of the mining giant Glencore the green light to expand the Mangoola mine near Muswellbrook.

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Categories: Environment

Scott Morrison says he wants to explain emissions plan to Australians before ‘people overseas’

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2021/10/04 - 5:35pm

PM implies he won’t attend Glasgow climate summit, saying people in the Hunter, Queensland and Victoria’s west are his first responsibility – after he’s met with the Nationals

The prime minister, Scott Morrison, says he wants to explain the government’s emissions reduction plan – once it is agreed with the Nationals – to affected workers in Australia first, as he flags he will not attend the Cop26 Glasgow climate summit in November.

While saying he is yet to make a firm decision on his attendance at the United Nations Cop26 summit, Morrison on Tuesday said he would face another 14 days in quarantine if he did attend, and also pointed to the New Zealand prime minister, Jacinda Adern, as “also not attending”.

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Categories: Environment

14% of world’s coral lost in less than a decade, study shows

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2021/10/04 - 4:01pm

Largest analysis of reef health reveals equivalent of more than all living coral in Australia was lost in 2009-18

About 14% of the world’s coral has been lost in less than a decade, a study of the health of coral reefs has found.

In the largest analysis of coral reef health ever undertaken, scientists found that between 2009 and 2018 the world lost about 11,700 sq km of coral – the equivalent of more than all the living coral in Australia.

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Categories: Environment

Priti Patel to enable police to stop disruptive protesters going to demos

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2021/10/04 - 4:01pm

New criminal disruption prevention orders that will restrict individuals’ movement are response to Insulate Britain blocking motorways

Protesters disrupting motorways will be prevented from travelling around the country under new powers to be handed to the police, Priti Patel will announce on Tuesday.

In a move that will provoke anger from civil liberties groups, the home secretary will say she will introduce criminal disruption prevention orders to halt the movement of “prolific offenders”.

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Categories: Environment

California beaches closed as ‘devastating’ oil spill threatens wildlife

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2021/10/04 - 1:40pm

An estimated 126,000 gallons leaked from an underwater pipeline in one of the largest spills in recent state history

Temperatures in southern California surged on Sunday, but Huntington state beach was devoid of the umbrellas and beach blankets that would typically line its shore.

Instead, public works officials were working feverishly to stop the spread of an estimated 126,000 gallons of heavy crude oil that leaked from an underwater pipeline over the weekend in one of the largest spills in recent California history.

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Categories: Environment

Huntington Beach oil spill blackens beaches and waves – in pictures

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2021/10/04 - 1:18pm

An estimated 126,000 gallons of crude oil has leaked from an underwater pipeline near Los Angeles in one of the largest disasters in recent state history. The spill near Huntington Beach has created a miles-wide sheen in the ocean and washed ashore, threatening the coastal ecosystem and marine wildlife. Crews are scrambling to clean up the area, which officials say could take weeks or even months

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Categories: Environment

An oil spill has hit sensitive marshland along the coast of Southern California

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2021/10/04 - 1:13pm

An oil spill off the coast of Southern California is sending globs onto the shores of Orange County. Environmental authorities are trying to protect a sensitive marshland in the oil slick's path.

Categories: Environment

Running homes and cars on electricity alone would save households $5,443 a year, report finds

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2021/10/04 - 9:30am

A new Australian thinktank says ditching domestic gas and petrol use would slash national greenhouse emissions by a third

What would you do with an extra $5,443 a year?

Converting all home appliances and cars to run on electricity could eliminate a third of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions while saving households $40bn a year by 2028, according to a new report.

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Categories: Environment

UK electricity generation to be fossil fuel free by 2035, says Boris Johnson

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2021/10/04 - 6:25am

PM tells Conservative conference that removing gas as power source will help protect against price surges

The prime minister has confirmed plans to eliminate fossil fuels from UK electricity generation by 2035.

Speaking during the Conservative party conference, Boris Johnson said the proposed shift would help the UK decarbonise, while softening the impact of the kind of gas price fluctuations that have prompted fears of a winter energy crisis in recent weeks.

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Categories: Environment

Major oil spill reaches Southern California coast

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2021/10/04 - 1:55am

An oil spill in Southern California has authorities scrambling. A pipeline connected of an offshore oil platform released more than 3,000 barrels of crude into the ocean near Orange County.

Categories: Environment

Surging gas prices and fuel bills focus Tory minds on the nuclear option

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2021/10/03 - 10:00pm

Growing fears of energy security are leading a rethink on Chinese involvement in atomic plans. But what alternative are there?

Among the subjects preoccupying delegates at the Conservative party conference in Manchester on Monday, energy will be near the top of the list.

Soaring global gas prices, a lack of windpower and surging household bills have focused minds on Britain’s energy needs – and the role of nuclear power in particular.

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Categories: Environment

Anxiety hangs over Arizonans facing impending climate disasters

NPR News - Environment - Sun, 2021/10/03 - 2:28pm

It's easy to measure physical damage from natural disasters made worse by climate change, less so their lingering psychological impacts. But experts say they're no less real.

Categories: Environment

‘There’s tar everywhere’: large California oil spill fouls beaches and kills wildlife

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2021/10/03 - 12:32pm

Crews scramble to contain 126,000 gallons of crude oil that spilled in waters off Orange county before it spread further into wetlands

One of the largest oil spills in recent southern California history fouled popular beaches and killed wildlife while crews scrambled on Sunday to contain the crude before it spread further into protected wetlands.

At least 126,000 gallons (572,807 liters) of oil spilled into the waters off Orange county, according to a statement from the city of Huntington Beach.

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Categories: Environment

A massive oil spill in the Pacific Ocean has reached the Southern California coast

NPR News - Environment - Sun, 2021/10/03 - 10:31am

Federal, state and local agencies are racing to determine the cause of the spill, which is at least 13 square miles in size.

(Image credit: PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP via Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

Rare tropical cyclone Shaheen is battering the coast of Oman

NPR News - Environment - Sun, 2021/10/03 - 7:03am

It's rare for a tropical cyclone this intense to come through the Arabian Sea, but warming ocean temperatures due to climate change are making these natural disasters more common.

(Image credit: Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command)

Categories: Environment

Patel pledges six months in prison or big fines for motorway protesters

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2021/10/03 - 6:18am

Government will introduce tougher powers to deal with climate change activists who block major roads

Protesters disrupting motorways will face up to six months in prison or unlimited fines under plans to stop climate campaigners bringing traffic to a halt, Priti Patel will say this week.

The home secretary said she would amend new legislation to bring in tougher sentences and give police powers to seize equipment that protesters could use to lock themselves on to fixed objects.

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Categories: Environment

‘Rogue’ paddleboarders and kayakers threaten seabird sanctuary

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2021/10/03 - 5:44am

Human activity disturbs nesting of puffins and rare roseate terns at Coquet Island in Northumberland

A bird sanctuary island in Northumberland, home to Britain’s rarest nesting seabird, is being threatened by an influx of “rogue” paddleboarders and kayakers who are causing major disturbances.

Dr Paul Morrison, the site manager of Coquet Island, said in his 37 years in the job he had seen a lot of changes, but “this is one of the most serious ones”.

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Categories: Environment

Fuel crisis and supply shortages are a product of the UK’s economic model

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2021/10/03 - 3:52am

Rising prices and lack of goods are what happens when just-in-time economy collides with seat-of-the-pants government

It all seems to have happened so fast. Only a few months ago, the government was congratulating itself for the speed at which Britain was emerging from the pandemic. But as the nights have lengthened, there have been empty shelves at supermarkets, spiralling energy prices and queues snaking back from petrol stations.

If there is a general sense of bemusement at all this, then there really shouldn’t be. This is what happens when just-in-time production methods collide with just-in-time government and turn a problem into a crisis.

Britain now has just 1% of Europe’s storage capacity, enough to cope with four or five cold winter days.

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Categories: Environment

Pandemic forces BBC into new approach for David Attenborough’s The Mating Game

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2021/10/03 - 3:15am

BBC One natural history series relied on local film-makers to be in the right place at the right time

African bullfrogs converging on pools in South Africa and fighting like bar room brawlers; a school of ghostly-looking manta rays assembling off the Australian coast; vivid images of amphibious snot otters working co-operatively in a cold north American river.

These are all scenes from the new BBC One David Attenborough blockbuster series The Mating Game, filmed during the Covid crisis using a markedly different approach to the 50-year-old tried-and-tested way of doing things.

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Categories: Environment
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