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Search resumes for woman and children feared dead in Tweed river

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2017/04/03 - 3:00pm

Witnesses went into floodwaters at Tumbulgum after one child escaped from the sinking vehicle but were unable to reach three others

The search for three people feared dead in a northern New South Wales river will resume on Tuesday morning, with police divers from Sydney heading to flood-hit Tumbulgum.

It is feared a woman, her son and daughter died when their car was swept into the swollen Tweed river on Monday afternoon. An eight-year-old girl was able to escape as the vehicle was washed into the water.

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Categories: Environment

We can't be Denmark: Josh Frydenberg plays down wind energy potential on Q&A

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2017/04/03 - 2:03pm

Energy minister says Australia’s remoteness means it cannot match European countries yet in producing electricity from renewables

Josh Frydenberg has pointed to South Australia’s intermittent power issues as evidence that the rest of the country is not ready to transition out of fossil fuels, calling the state Australia’s “great experiment”.

The minister for the environment and energy appeared alongside Helle Thorning-Schmidt, the chief executive of Save the Children International and the former prime minister of Denmark, on the Q&A panel on Monday night.

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Categories: Environment

Who'd want to dump Australia's nuclear waste here? Well, this guy

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2017/04/03 - 1:15pm

At Kimba in the heart of the country, a community is divided – in one case literally so – over a plan to deposit the national stockpile of radioactive waste

At a point almost halfway between the east and west coasts of Australia, a mob of emus scamper along the Napandee property fenceline. The mallee scrub out this way appears otherwise deserted, the kind of remote location where one could hide a dead body and get away with it – but what about an entire country’s radioactive waste?

Landowner Jeff Baldock is determined to find out.

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Categories: Environment

Dairy needn’t be scary – just look at our calves | Letters

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2017/04/03 - 11:25am

We are dairy farmers in Scotland who rear our calves to eight weeks of age in hutches clearly visible to the public next to a road. Walkers, cyclists and motorists stop to view and photograph the calves in their happy and comfortable environment. We have never had a negative comment as to their welfare and since starting to calve in September – the last one arrived on Sunday night – no antibiotics have been required to treat any ailment with the calves.

Though I would agree that the calves pictured in your article (Dairy is scary. The public are waking up to the darkest part of farming, theguardian.com, 30 March) looked too big for the hutch accommodation provided, I find this to be the healthiest method to rear calves for the first period of what is in our interest to be a happy, contented and productive life.
Robin Young
Dunblane, Stirling

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Categories: Environment

a monday matinee...

The Field Lab - Mon, 2017/04/03 - 10:20am

Categories: Sustainable SW Blogs

Switch from nuclear to coal-fired power linked to low birth weight in US region

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2017/04/03 - 8:51am

Study reveals fall in birth weight in areas of the Tennessee Valley which had greatest boom in coal-fired power plant activity following nuclear closures

Children in a region of the US were born smaller after the area switched from nuclear plants to coal-fired power stations, new research has found.

The study looked at of the impact of nuclear power plant closures in the aftermath of the Three Mile Island accident in Pennsylvania in 1979 – the most serious such accident in US history – in which one of the power station’s reactors underwent a partial meltdown.

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Categories: Environment

Jean-Michel Jarre to play anti-Donald Trump Dead Sea concert

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2017/04/03 - 8:03am

French musician to perform in front of ancient Masada fortress to draw attention to urgency of saving planet Earth

Pioneering electronic musician Jean-Michel Jarre has said he wants to use an all-night concert at the Dead Sea to highlight what he sees as the anti-environmental policies of Donald Trump.

The French musician, who shot to fame in the 1970s, will perform in front of the ancient Masada fortress in Israel on Thursday in a bid to draw attention to the “urgency of saving the Dead Sea”, he told AFP.

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Categories: Environment

Grape Britain: UK merry on organic wine as sales soar

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2017/04/03 - 7:56am

Rise in number of environmentally conscious consumers lead to boom in sales of organic wines, beers and spirits

It is made from grapes grown without pesticides and chemicals, is kind to the environment and rarely triggers hangovers. Sales of organic wine are booming in the UK as part of the growing trend for “conscious consumerism”.

According to the organic food and farming group the Soil Association, sales of organic beers, wines and spirits rose by 14.3% last year to reach nearly £6m, driven by strong demand for wines where consumers are increasingly seeking “natural” ingredients and reassurances about provenance. Still a relatively small share (2.2%) of the overall UK organic market, sales are now growing at double the rate of the market as a whole.

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Categories: Environment

Renewables cut Europe's carbon emissions by 10% in 2015, says EEA

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2017/04/03 - 7:05am

European Environment Agency reports solar and and wind is reducing fossil fuel dependency but clean energy capacity still not growing fast enough

A surge in the use of wind and solar energy helped Europe to cut its fossil fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions by about 10% in 2015, an authoritative new report has found.

Energy use from renewables rose to 16.7% of Europe’s total, up from 15% in 2013, and accounted for 77% of the continent’s new power capacity.

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Categories: Environment

Fracking firm Ineos leads industry lobbying to avoid green tax

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2017/04/03 - 7:03am

Documents show Anglo-Swiss firm is using Brexit as a chance to seek further exemptions from climate policy costs

Anglo-Swiss chemicals firm Ineos is privately leading an industry lobbying attempt to avoid paying for the cost of decarbonising Britain’s economy.

Documents released under freedom of information rules reveal that Ineos is pushing the government to use Brexit as a chance to exempt the chemicals sector entirely from climate policy costs.

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Categories: Environment

Wildlife on your doorstep: share your April photos

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2017/04/03 - 4:12am

April brings the joys of spring for the northern hemisphere while winter is a step closer for the southern hemisphere. We’d like to see your wildlife photos

Everything is starting to finally bloom for the northern hemisphere, with the start of April promising milder spring weather. Meanwhile the southern hemisphere is preparing itself for more of those cooler autumn days. So what sort of wildlife will we all discover on our doorsteps? We’d love to see your photos of the April wildlife near you.

You can share your April wildlife photos, videos and stories with us by clicking on the blue ‘Contribute’ buttons. Or if you’re out and about you can look for our assignments in the new Guardian app.

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Categories: Environment

Australian government lowers safe exposure levels of toxic firefighting chemicals

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2017/04/03 - 1:55am

Move brings tolerable daily intake levels in line with US standards and follows months of controversy over contaminations near airports and military bases

The federal government has dramatically lowered the safe exposure levels of toxic firefighting chemicals, following months of controversy over contaminations detected near airports and military bases.

The new tolerable daily intake levels (TDIs) of the polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) chemicals – used in firefighting foam for decades until the early 2000s but now known to be toxic – are now in line with US standards, but authorities have warned the long-term effects of exposure remain unknown.

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Categories: Environment

Some Wildlife Photographers Use Bait, But Is It Worth The Shot?

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2017/04/03 - 1:25am

Photos of an owl swooping in with wings wide, eyes glowing and talons outstretched might not really be because of chance. Photographers using mice to lure the owls have caused a fierce debate.

(Image credit: Derek Montgomery for MPR News)

Categories: Environment

Police search for three people in sunken car in flood-hit Tweed river

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2017/04/02 - 11:18pm

Police say child escaped car and raised alarm in latest tragedy as flood emergency continues in northern New South Wales and south-east Queensland

A police rescue effort was under way on Monday to recover three people from a car that went into the Tweed river in far northern New South Wales.

Emergency services were called to Dulguigan Road in Tumbulgum about 1.40pm . A spokeswoman for NSW police said a child had been able to escape the vehicle and seek help from a nearby house.

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Categories: Environment

Thousands of birds flock to Australia's inland lakes after record rain

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2017/04/02 - 10:57pm

The influx includes a newly discovered breeding colony of the nomadic and somewhat mysterious banded stilt

Tens of thousands of coastal birds have flocked to the outback after record-breaking rains filled inland lakes to their highest levels in three decades.

The influx includes a newly discovered breeding colony of the nomadic and somewhat mysterious banded stilts, on one of the lakes’ islands in the remote eastern Pilbara region of Western Australia.

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Categories: Environment

Sumatran elephants: a fragile future – in pictures

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2017/04/02 - 10:20pm

These powerful, and at times graphic, images bear witness to the plight of critically endangered Sumatran elephants and the challenges they face. These include the conversion of forest habitat to oil palm plantations, degradation of forest habitat by illegal logging, conflicts with farmers through crop-raiding, and being illegally hunted for their ivory tusks. While the situation is dire, the camera’s lens also finds hope in the efforts of those working to safeguard the animal’s future

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Categories: Environment

China Poised To Fill Leadership Void On Climate Policy – With Economic Incentives

NPR News - Environment - Sun, 2017/04/02 - 2:58pm

President Trump signed an executive order to roll back climate change policies made by the Obama administration. Varun Sivaram at the Council on Foreign Relations explains what this means for China.

Categories: Environment

new every morning...

The Field Lab - Sun, 2017/04/02 - 12:45pm
Lamentations 3:22 It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.  23 They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.
Categories: Sustainable SW Blogs

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Ordinance of Santa Fe

Home Grown New Mexico - Sun, 2017/04/02 - 11:31am

Hi Folks-As an organization that promotes organic growing methods, we feel this is an important petition you may want to sign telling the City of Santa Fe to honor their Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Ordinance of 2001.  We normally don’t get involved in politics but feel this is too important to ignore here for Santa Fe. They are now ignoring the ordinance by spraying herbicides and pesticides in our parks, streets and around buildings. Be proactive for our beautiful city and keep it safe for us and our pets. Read on.


From the Santa Fe Coalition for Alternatives to Pesticides (SF CAP): 

Ever since the City of Santa Fe passed an integrated pest management (IPM) ordinance in 2001, city parks, streets, and buildings have been as free as possible from pesticide applications. What a joy it has been to know you can take your children and pets there without fear of being exposed to poisons. And know that bees and wildlife are not being harmed.

But that is about to change. The current IPM coordinator and Parks Division Director have breached our existing IPM ordinance, and are no longer committed to the no pesticide policy. They have already sprayed Rufina Street with glyphosate (active ingredient in Roundup), a known cancer-causing chemical. They have also begun regular monthly pesticide spraying of the golf shop buildings, and made at least two applications of herbicides for weed prevention. All these actions violate the IPM ordinance, and future applications are surely to follow, since the IPM coordinator said if he couldn’t use pesticides, he’d “better get another job”.

The City had it right when it stated in the IPM Ordinance that “(t)he city, in carrying out its operations, shall assume pesticides are potentially hazardous to human and environmental health.”

That’s why I signed a petition to Javier Gonzalez, Mayor, City of Santa Fe, which says:

“We, the undersigned, add our voice to the list of citizens who are concerned about the health and safety of Santa Fe and who urge the City to continue to abide by the spirit and letter of the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Ordinance.”

Will you sign the petition too? Click here to add your name:


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