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Grouse moors under fire after golden eagle tag found in Scottish river

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2020/09/25 - 5:40am

Investigators say discovery of satellite tag wrapped in lead sheeting is a breakthrough after spate of bird disappearances

The satellite tag from a golden eagle which vanished in suspicious circumstances on a Scottish grouse moor four years ago has been found in a river, wrapped in lead sheeting.

The tag was recovered earlier this year from the River Braan in Perthshire in what wildlife crime investigators believe is a breakthrough in their attempts to detect and combat bird of prey persecution.

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Categories: Environment

'Rat-running' increases on residential UK streets as experts blame satnav apps

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2020/09/25 - 5:32am

Motoring on minor roads doubled between 2009 and 2019, regional figures reveal

“Rat-running” on residential streets has increased dramatically in the past decade, according to statistics from the Department for Transport.

London has experienced a doubling in motor traffic on quiet C roads since 2008, while in most other parts of the UK polluting motor traffic has increased more greatly on residential streets than on A or B roads.

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Categories: Environment

Ugandan lawmakers reject plan for Murchison Falls hydropower dam

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2020/09/25 - 3:49am

Activists praise decision to reject energy ministry’s proposal to dam the world-famous waterfall

Conservationists in Uganda have hailed a bipartisan decision to reject the government’s plan to construct a hydro-power dam at the country’s biggest tourist attraction.

Lawmakers unanimously adopted a report by the 28 member parliamentary committee on environment on Thursday, rejecting the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development proposal to build a 360MW at Uhuru Falls on Murchison Falls national park.

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Categories: Environment

‘Everything's for sale’: the shocking film on the privatization of American public lands

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2020/09/25 - 3:15am

Public Trust highlights the 640m acres owned by the country’s citizenry, lands that some in the Republican party want to sell off

Towards the middle of the new film Public Trust, about the continued push by zealous conservatives to privatize ownership of the United States’ federally-managed public lands, the stakes are laid bare: “If you don’t get engaged, you lose,” says Land Tawney, president and chief executive of the nonprofit Backcountry Hunters and Anglers. “When you get complacent, things are done to you.”

Tawney is speaking of the 640m acres that are owned by the country’s citizenry. Few things in politics are as quintessentially American as the country’s vast system of public lands. No other nation on earth has this much property that belongs to its people and is intended to be management by the government for the benefit and uplift of all. Yet selling off those lands is still listed as a goal in the Republican party platform, and the Trump administration seems singularly focused on rolling back protections to usher in more drilling and mining.

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Categories: Environment

Mexican farmers revolt over sending water to US during drought

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2020/09/25 - 3:00am

Country has one month to deliver outstanding 289m cubic metres and ensure water for 14 major cities and growers

Mexican farmers in the drought-stricken state of Chihuahua are pitted against riot squads from the national guard in an increasingly violent standoff over their government’s decision to ship scarce water supplies to the United States.

The confrontation has already led to bloodshed: earlier this month, a woman was shot dead and her husband was wounded after guardsmen opened fire on farmers wielding sticks and stones.

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Categories: Environment

'Sliding towards extinction': koala may be given endangered listing as numbers plummet

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2020/09/25 - 2:20am

The species is among 28 animals being assessed for potential upgrade of their threat status, federal government says

The koala is being considered for official listing as endangered after the summer’s bushfire disaster and ongoing habitat destruction on the east coast forced the government to reconsider its threat status.

The iconic species, which is currently listed as vulnerable under national environment laws, is among 28 animals that could have their threat status upgraded, the federal environment minister, Sussan Ley, said on Friday.

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Categories: Environment

'Light Years Ahead' Of Their Elders, Young Republicans Push GOP On Climate Change

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2020/09/25 - 2:00am

Climate change is major election issue for Democrats, but not Republicans. Yet polls show many young conservatives are concerned about climate impacts, and some are lobbying for solutions.

(Image credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

Trump administration advances plan to cut protections for largest national forest

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2020/09/24 - 7:37pm

Plan to open Alaska’s Tongass national forest to logging faces backlash from environmental advocates, tribal nations and fishermen

The Trump administration has announced it will move forward with a plan to roll back regulations protecting millions of acres in America’s largest national forest from logging, sparking an outcry from environmental advocacy organizations, Alaskan tribal nations, and fishermen.

Related: 'We depend on the Tongass': Alaskans fight to save US’s largest national forest

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Categories: Environment

California Gov. Newsom Calls Transition To Electric Cars An 'Economic Imperative'

NPR News - Environment - Thu, 2020/09/24 - 4:59pm

"This is where the automobile manufacturers are going," Newsom tells NPR a day after ordering a 2035 ban gasoline cars. "We want to accelerate a trend you're seeing all around the rest of the world."

(Image credit: Daniel Kim/AP)

Categories: Environment

Airstream has left the Field Lab...

The Field Lab - Thu, 2020/09/24 - 3:19pm

 

I haven't seen this view in over 9 years...89,98,68,0,B

Categories: Sustainable SW Blogs

California's Joshua tree could become first to win protections because of climate crisis

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2020/09/24 - 6:39am

The 2.5m-year-old tree would be first plant species protected by law in state as current habitat increasingly becomes less viable

The western Joshua tree will be considered for protection under the California Endangered Species Act, possibly becoming the first plant species to be given protection of law in the state because of a primarily climate crisis-related threat.

The California Fish and Game Commission voted Tuesday to accept a petition that provides the gnarly-limbed yucca plants protected status for a year while the state conducts a study. The Joshua tree – which is not a tree but is actually a succulent called Yucca brevifolia – has graced the landscape of the Mojave desert for 2.5m years.

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Categories: Environment

Four ways to avoid PFAS in your water

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2020/09/24 - 3:00am

The potentially dangerous chemicals are ubiquitous and used in numerous consumer products. Here’s what to know

PFAS compounds are ubiquitous, used in a range of products, from food-delivery boxes to non-stick cookware to stain-resistant clothing.

But one of the most troubling routes to PFAS exposure is drinking water that has been contaminated by discharges from factories and other facilities.

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Categories: Environment

Why dangerous ‘forever chemicals’ are allowed in US drinking water

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2020/09/24 - 3:00am

The federal government has still not set limits for PFAS compounds, and some allege that could be because it is a polluter of them itself

  • This story is co-published with Consumer Reports

In 2014, residents of Horsham Township, near Philadelphia, learned that their water had been contaminated with potentially toxic chemicals linked to an array of health problems, including learning delays in children and cancer. Those residents include Frank and Lisa Penna, who allege in a lawsuit that their water was among the contaminated supplies.

Known as PFAS, for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, the chemicals in this class of approximately 5,000 substances have become notorious as much for their potential danger as for their perseverance. Because the chemical bonds that hold the compounds together don’t break down easily, they last a very long time – a reality that has led to a commonly used name for the group: “Forever chemicals.”

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Categories: Environment

Chad halts lake's world heritage status request over oil exploration

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2020/09/24 - 2:14am

Exclusive: African state says it has agreements with oil companies in Lake Chad area

Chad has asked to suspend an application for world heritage site status for Lake Chad to explore oil and mining opportunities in the region, it can be revealed.

In a letter leaked to the Guardian, Chad’s tourism and culture minister wrote to Unesco, the body which awards the world heritage designation, asking to “postpone the process of registering Lake Chad on the world heritage list”.

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Categories: Environment

Kentucky’s climate is suffering. Can the state slip the industry ties that prevent change?

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2020/09/24 - 2:00am

Mitch McConnell has long resisted climate action even as the farm and coal sectors suffer, but a growing movement could bring change

April 15. That’s the traditional frost-free date in Schochoh, the small community in south-central Kentucky, where Sam Halcomb and his family own and operate Walnut Grove Farms. Before then, the soft red winter wheat that Halcomb grows, which finds its way into McDonald’s biscuits and grocery store pancake mixes, is flowering and especially vulnerable to cold. The frost-free date is an estimate, based on years of experience. If you make it past that date, you’re likely to have a healthy harvest.

This year, a freeze came on exactly April 15, with early morning temperatures dropping into the mid-20s Fahrenheit. “We were all smacking our heads, saying, ‘Ah, we almost made it’,” Halcomb said. Then, on May 9, another freeze hit.

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Categories: Environment

Mark Butler rows back remarks dismissing gas as Labor divisions exposed

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2020/09/24 - 1:09am

Shadow climate spokesman fronted Sky News to clarify earlier statement that gas would not underpin Australia’s future prosperity

The shadow climate minister, Mark Butler, has walked back an observation that gas won’t underpin Australia’s prosperity in the 21st century after the remarks triggered a fresh round of consternation within Labor – including pushback from union leaders.

In prepared remarks sent to a carbon farming forum on Wednesday, Butler said Australia had found itself with plentiful coal and gas in the 20th century, “making us one of the most prosperous societies in human history on the back of these fossil fuels”.

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Categories: Environment

Damning report blames NSW government for water shortages in regional towns

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2020/09/24 - 12:05am

Water minister Melinda Pavey had blamed local councils, but the auditor general points the finger at the state government

A damning new report has laid blame for many western New South Wales regional towns almost running out of water during the drought squarely at the feet of the state government, saying it “has not effectively supported or overseen town water infrastructure planning since at least 2014”.

When Dubbo, Tamworth, Walgett and other western NSW towns had to ration town water – and some even had to truck in drinking water – last summer, there was much finger pointing over who was to blame.

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Categories: Environment

'My friends were lied to': will coalminers stand by Trump as jobs disappear?

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2020/09/24 - 12:00am

The president vowed to help the industry, but it continues shrinking despite his cuts to regulations

Art Sullivan is considered something of a political heretic by other coalminers in south-western Pennsylvania, where a wave of support for Donald Trump based upon his flamboyant promises of a resurgence in coal helped propel the Republican to the US presidency.

Related: Trump weakens Obama-era rules on toxic wastewater from coal plants

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Categories: Environment

Crisps, chocolate and cheese worst offenders for recycling, report says

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2020/09/23 - 11:00pm

Which? singles out big brands for lack of environmentally conscious packaging

Crisps, chocolate and cheese are among the worst foods for packaging recyclability, with big brands such as Pringles, KitKat and Babybel singled out for failing to do more to help the environment, a new investigation has claimed.

The consumer group Which? analysed 89 of the UK’s best-selling branded groceries and found only a third (34%) had packaging that was fully recyclable in household collections. About four in 10 (41%) of items had no relevant labelling, leaving even environmentally conscious consumers in the dark about disposal.

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Categories: Environment

Carbon storage technologies critical for meeting climate targets – IEA

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2020/09/23 - 10:00pm

International Energy Agency says without CCUS projects energy goals will be impossible to reach

Global governments and major polluters must take urgent action to develop technologies which can capture and store carbon emissions or it will be “virtually impossible” for the world to meet its climate targets, according to the International Energy Agency.

The global energy watchdog said carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) projects should play a central role in meeting climate targets as one of four key pillars in reducing emissions.

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Categories: Environment
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