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'The Great Fish Swap': How America Is Downgrading Its Seafood Supply

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 12:13pm

One-third of the seafood Americans catch is sold abroad, but most of the seafood we eat is imported and often of lower quality. Author Paul Greenberg explains why. Originally broadcast July 1, 2014.

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Categories: Environment

The week in wildlife – in pictures

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 10:51am

Brown bears in Alaska, lions in the Serengeti and pond turtles in the Philippines in this week’s pick of images from the natural world

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Categories: Environment

Does the Bible really say that global warming will make the Earth ‘vomit us out’? | Andrew Brown

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 10:31am
A clergyman’s borrowed warning of ecological doom reminds me that theology can be flexible enough to fit many times and places

My ears pricked up in the Church of England’s global warming debate when a clergyman in a brightly coloured shirt announced that the Earth would “vomit us out” because we had defiled it. People should say more of this kind of thing at synod. They should say more of this in almost all dull meetings. Certainly, it is an arresting figure of ecological doom.

The speaker, Richard Burridge, the dean of Kings College London, went on to describe the form this vomiting out would take: “God says: ‘I will break the pride of your power; and I will make your heaven as iron, and your earth as brass: and your strength shall be spent in vain: for your land shall not yield her increase, neither shall the trees of the land yield their fruits.”

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Categories: Environment

Japan submits plan to UN to cut emissions by 26% by 2030

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 9:20am

Pledge to UN criticised by analysts as being less ambitious than it looks due to using 2013 levels as baseline, RTCC reports

Japan will cut greenhouse gas emissions 26% from 2013 levels by 2030, under a plan to be submitted to the UN on Friday.

That commits the source of 2.65% of global emissions to steeper reductions than the US (18-21%) and EU (24%) over the same period, Reuters reported.

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Categories: Environment

France seeks short and long-lasting Paris climate change deal

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 8:12am

Legal core of a new UN accord on climate change should be short and concise, compared to current 90-page draft, says French government

A United Nations accord to slow global warming should be short, flexible and long-lasting to avoid complex re-negotiations every few years, according to a document prepared by France before a Paris summit in December.

The deal will also have to ensure that governments do not backtrack on promises to cut greenhouse gas emissions despite a likely lack of sanctions, according to a briefing for climate ministers attending preparatory talks in Paris on 20-21 July.

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Categories: Environment

Young beaver caught on camera at reintroduction site in Scotland

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 7:17am

Footage shows the first kit to be spotted this year at location in Scottish Highlands where the animals were returned to the wild

Footage has been released of the first baby beaver to be spotted this year at a Scottish site where the animals have been reintroduced.

It is the first young beaver – known as a kit – to be captured on camera this year at the site at Lochan Buic in the Knapdale Forest of Argyll, in the Scottish Highlands, though wildlife experts suspect there may be more.

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Categories: Environment

Green news roundup: pine martens, eco homes and warming oceans

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 7:14am

The week’s top environment news stories and green events. If you are not already receiving this roundup, sign up here to get the briefing delivered to your inbox

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Categories: Environment

School of Sharks spotted off Sussex coast – video

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 7:09am
A school of up to 50 sharks is captured on film in Medmerry nature reserve near Selsey in West Sussex on Wednesday morning. The sharks were identified as smooth-hounds, which are not dangerous to humans. They are usually found in coastal waters, but it is rare to see them in such large numbers Continue reading...
Categories: Environment

Will Our Demand For Food Threaten Our Supply of Water?

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 6:30am

Ecologist Jon Foley says agriculture is the "most powerful force unleashed on this planet since the end of the ice age." He says we're using too much to irrigate and we have to rethink how we farm.

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Categories: Environment

What Can A Small Town In England Teach Us About Resilience?

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 6:30am

Community organizer Rob Hopkins argues that individuals, towns and communities have a large role to play in lowering our dependence on fossil fuels.

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Categories: Environment

What's Disappearing From the Amazon — Even Faster Than Wildlife?

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 6:30am

The isolated tribes of the Amazon are getting dispersed or dying out. Ethnobotanist Mark Plotkin describes what we'll lose if their culture and collective wisdom vanish with them.

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Categories: Environment

Beware permitting fracking, says farmer who allowed coal methane borehole

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 5:55am

Paul Hickson says when he signed access agreement he had no idea of physical or psychological impact that gas drilling could have on him and his family

A farmer who gave an energy company permission to dig a test borehole for coal bed methane gas out of a sense of national duty has warned other landowners not to allow fracking and other unconventional gas exploration companies on their land.

The potential of gas drilling to pollute water courses and the effect it could have on the value of farmland left Paul Hickson and his family stressed for years and no wealthier, he said.

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Categories: Environment

UK government gags advisers in bees and pesticides row

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 4:46am

Expert Committee on Pesticides told to postpone publication of minutes after refusing to back farmers’ request to use banned neonicotinoids on oil seed rape

The government has gagged its own pesticide advisers, after they refused to back an application by the National Farmers Union to lift a ban on bee-harming chemicals. The gag is intended to prevent campaigners lobbying ministers on the issue, according to documents seen by the Guardian.

Neonicotinoids, the world’s most widely used insecticide, were banned in the European Union in 2013. Substantial scientific evidence indicates that the nerve agents cause serious harm to bees, whose pollination is vital for many crops.

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Categories: Environment

What clean power is really doing to British energy bills

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 4:38am

Is the UK running out of money for clean power, as reports suggested this week? No, not yet, and no, wind turbines aren’t the reason for rising bills

Energy bills are back in the news, with the Office of Budget Responsibility calculating new figures for the cost of low carbon power, the Competition and Markets Authority investigating energy companies, and both IPPR and Policy Exchange releasing reports in the past few weeks. With so much to debate, and a lot of seemingly conflicting numbers to grasp, here are five things you should know:

1. The levy control framework (LCF) makes up 3% of the average energy bill.
The claim that government controls a large proportion your energy bill rests mainly on the costs of electricity and gas networks, which make up around 22% of bills. In contrast, energy efficiency policies, which reduce consumption, and therefore lower bills, make up around 3%. Low carbon power, covered by the levy control framework, also makes up just under 3% of the bill. So-called ‘policy costs’ are, therefore, mostly due to networks, not low carbon power.

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Categories: Environment

Climate change bargains: the hottest deals of 2056 - video | UCB Comedy

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 4:00am
What will commercials look like after the Earth has grown skin-meltingly hot? Here's the best guess from UCB Comedy, the digital arm of the Upright Citizens Brigade, a live comedy theater troupe. At the imaginary Stuff Mart of the future, the deals are the only thing hotter than the planet, with great prices on now-useless items like winter coats, scarves, snowboards and more. Don't miss this sale! Continue reading...
Categories: Environment

Australia on alert for potential oil spill off Great Barrier Reef

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 3:42am

Authorities in Queensland say small patches of oily water seen close to where fisherman earlier reported seeing slick nearly 1km long

Australian authorities remain on alert for a potential oil spill in waters around the Great Barrier Reef despite finding little sign of a reported kilometre-long slick off the north Queensland coast.

Maritime safety authorities in Queensland confirmed that small patches of oily water were seen in waters south of Townsville where a fisherman had earlier reported seeing a slick close to 1km long.

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Categories: Environment

'When Thunder Roars, Go Indoors' To Best Avoid Lightning's Pain

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 2:35am

Deaths in the U.S. from lightning strikes are up in 2015, compared with recent years. A convertible won't save you. Get inside at the first rumble of thunder, and stay away from plugged-in appliances.

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Categories: Environment

Polar bears can't cope with food loss by entering hibernation-like state – study

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 2:17am

Bears have no special ability to minimise energy loss during increasing periods of fasting brought on by climate change, as some previous research had suggested

A study of an Alaska polar bear population in summer concludes the bear’s biology will not help stave off starvation in the face of global warming.

The study of southern Beaufort Sea polar bears by university, federal and private researchers over three years concludes they have no special ability to minimise energy loss during increasing periods of fasting brought on by climate warming, less sea ice and fewer hunting days.

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Categories: Environment

Reduce, Reuse, Remove The Cellophane: Recycling Demystified

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 2:09am

Are plastic bags recyclable? Why are Christmas lights a no-go? A recycling plant operations manager takes readers' questions about the process.

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Categories: Environment

Science Confirms 2014 Was Hottest Yet Recorded, On Land And Sea

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2015/07/17 - 2:09am

The international report card is out and confirms the hottest average on record — for a third time in 15 years. More than 400 scientists contributed data, finding a spike in sea and air temperatures.

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Categories: Environment
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