NPR News - Environment

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Breaking news on the environment, climate change, pollution, and endangered species. Also featuring Climate Connections, a special series on climate change co-produced by NPR and National Geographic.
Updated: 1 hour 57 min ago

Every Wildfire In New South Wales, Australia, Is Now Under Control

Fri, 2020/02/14 - 2:21pm

The fires that burned for months over much of eastern Australia have finally been brought under control, helped by days of intense rain. But recovery remains a long-term effort.

Categories: Environment

Rare Weedy Seadragons Hatch At California Aquarium

Fri, 2020/02/14 - 1:39pm

The delicate creatures resemble bits of seaweed and are distant cousins of the seahorse. The aquarium says the two inch-long babies are already feeding on tiny shrimp.

(Image credit: Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography via AP)

Categories: Environment

High Avalanche Danger Out West Affects Transportation And Ski Areas

Wed, 2020/02/12 - 2:17pm

A prolific two weeks of avalanches in Western states closed major highways and ski resorts. It's putting pressure on avalanche forecasters and safety crews as mountains see larger-than-usual crowds.

Categories: Environment

Critics Blast Proposed Changes To The National Environmental Policy Act

Wed, 2020/02/12 - 3:06am

The Trump administration wants to defang the National Environmental Policy Act. At a public hearing in Denver, the law's defenders faced off with federal officials and business interests.

Categories: Environment

Beer Waste Helps Montana Town Save Money On Water Treatment

Wed, 2020/02/12 - 3:06am

Brewery waste, fed at the right time at the right dosage to a wastewater treatment plant's bacteria, can be used to treat water. One Montana town is doing just that.

(Image credit: Rachel Cramer/Yellowstone Public Radio)

Categories: Environment

Proposals To Ban Fracking Could Hurt Democrats In Key States

Tue, 2020/02/11 - 3:48am

Some Democratic presidential candidates want to ban fracking to help address climate change. That attracts young people, but may alienate swing voters in key oil and gas states like Pennsylvania.

(Image credit: Jeff Brady/NPR)

Categories: Environment

Critics Say Proposed Copper Mine In Minnesota Threatens Pristine Water

Tue, 2020/02/11 - 3:03am

A company in northern Minnesota wants to build an underground copper mine near a federally protected wilderness with crystal clear drinking water. Which jobs are more key: mining or tourism?

Categories: Environment

Colorado Voters Are Set To Decide If Wolves Should Be Reintroduced To The State

Tue, 2020/02/11 - 3:00am

In November, Coloradans are set to vote on whether to return wolves to the state. The ballot initiative may be the first time voters in any state could force reintroduction of an endangered species.

(Image credit: Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife via AP)

Categories: Environment

Controversial Trophy Hunting Council Disbanded Amid Legal Battle

Mon, 2020/02/10 - 3:51pm

The government is calling on a New York federal judge to dismiss lawsuits alleging the group was formed illegally. But animal rights advocates want a ruling.

(Image credit: Kathy Willens/AP)

Categories: Environment

A Warm Winter Means Headaches For Beekeepers

Mon, 2020/02/10 - 2:17pm

Honeybees normally settle in their hives and rest over winter. But this season has been unusually warm — and that's a challenge for beekeepers.

Categories: Environment

Climate Change Threatens Alaska Census Count

Sun, 2020/02/09 - 3:12pm

Rising temperatures are forcing some Alaska Native villages to consider relocating to higher ground. Climate change is also complicating an accurate count for the 2020 census more complicated.

Categories: Environment

Tourism Worries And Few Takers As More Utah Land Offered For Drilling, Mining

Sun, 2020/02/09 - 6:01am

The Trump administration opened lands within the former bounds of two Obama-designated National Monuments for resource extraction, but with low demand and high costs, industry is staying away for now.

Categories: Environment

It Was 65 Degrees In Antarctica This Week

Fri, 2020/02/07 - 4:34pm

The preliminary finding, reported by Argentine researchers on the Antarctic Peninsula, would be the continent's hottest temperature on record if verified by the World Meteorological Organization.

(Image credit: Natacha Pisarenko/AP)

Categories: Environment

Australia's East Gets Drenched By Rain, And Flood Warnings Replace Fire Alerts

Fri, 2020/02/07 - 8:55am

A deluge is falling on Australia's southeast coast — and while it's quashing stubborn fires, the water is also causing flash floods and other hazards.

(Image credit: Brendon Thorne/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

From Delivery Trucks To Scooter-Moving Vans, Fleets Are Going Electric

Fri, 2020/02/07 - 7:48am

Lime is all about electric vehicles — battery-powered scooters, that is. But now the company is also going to use plug-in vans for behind-the-scenes operations. And it's far from alone.

(Image credit: Yann Schreiber/AFP via Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

Feds May Open Utah National Monuments For Mining And Drilling

Fri, 2020/02/07 - 3:09am

The Trump administration announced management plans for public lands in Utah that were formerly part of national monuments declared by President Obama. Critics worry it means more drilling and mining.

Categories: Environment

Trump Administration Finalizes Plans To Allow Development On Downsized Monuments

Thu, 2020/02/06 - 2:50pm

More than two years after Trump dramatically shrank the protected land in Utah, the Bureau of Land Management released the framework for the move, despite continuing challenges to its legality.

(Image credit: George Frey/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

Bumblebees Are Disappearing Because Of Extreme Heat

Thu, 2020/02/06 - 1:14pm

New research shows that climate change and habitat loss are causing widespread decline among bumblebees in North America and Europe — and putting ecosystems that depend on these pollinators at risk.

(Image credit: Peter Soroye)

Categories: Environment

Pesticide Police, Overwhelmed By Dicamba Complaints, Ask EPA For Help

Thu, 2020/02/06 - 5:19am

Across the Midwest, millions of acres of farmland have been damaged by dicamba, an herbicide that can harm crops not engineered to withstand it. There are so many cases, regulators can't keep up.

(Image credit: Dan Charles/NPR)

Categories: Environment

Canadian Court Clears The Way For Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion

Wed, 2020/02/05 - 2:46pm

The court said the government has adequately consulted with indigenous groups about the pipeline expansion. First Nations have said that they remain concerned about the project's environmental impact.

(Image credit: Jeremy Hainsworth/AP)

Categories: Environment