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Save Wildlife, Save Yourself?

NPR News - Environment - Fri, 2015/06/26 - 8:32am

Protecting the environment may reduce many diseases, such as Lyme and West Nile, a study finds. The tantalizing idea suggests that conservation and human health may be more connected than we thought.

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Categories: Environment

Green news roundup: Dutch court's climate ruling and hope for elephants

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/06/26 - 8:04am

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

California's state pension funds move closer to divesting from coal

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/06/26 - 7:29am

In the latest Keep it in the ground update, a key vote is passed in the push to get US’s two largest pension funds to move out of thermal coal, plus we invite health professionals to sign an open letter asking Wellcome to divest

A key vote in the campaign to get California’s state pension funds to divest from thermal coal was passed this week.

The California Public Employee Retirement System (Calpers) and the California State Teachers Retirement System (CalSTRS) are the US’s largest pension funds, holding $299bn (£190bn) and $193bn in respective assets. Calpers currently holds at least $100m in at least 20 thermal coal mining companies.

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Categories: Environment

The week in wildlife – in pictures

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/06/26 - 6:51am

Wood warblers, bear cubs and Bactrian camels feature in this week’s pick of images from the natural world

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Categories: Environment

Barack Obama sets sizzling climate action pace in push to leave legacy

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/06/26 - 4:00am

The president has used his executive power to spit out climate initiatives at a dizzying rate in 2015 but some see his actions on oil production as contradictory

The White House has churned out about 40 new measures to fight carbon pollution just since the start of 2015, stepping up the pace ahead of critical talks for a global climate change deal.

Two years after Barack Obama’s sweeping promise to fight climate change on 25 June 2013, the president has used his executive powers to spit out new climate events or announcements at a dizzying rate of one every 4.5 days this year, according to the running tally kept by the White House.

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Categories: Environment

What do mermaids think of climate change? - video

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/06/26 - 4:00am
In this hard-hitting report from the Mermaid Parade in New York City's Coney Island last weekend, we asked mermaids and other sea creatures for their views on the environment. What's the word from the fish and dolphin lobbies? How will rising sea levels affect undersea housing? And what is pollution doing to mermaids' hair? Find out in this video. Continue reading...
Categories: Environment

Half of Europe’s electricity set to be from renewables by 2030

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/06/26 - 3:54am

Leaked EU paper predicts fast renewables growth to around double current levels if countries meet climate objectives

Europe will likely get more than half of its electricity from renewable sources by the end of the next decade if EU countries meet their climate pledges, according to a draft commission paper.

A planned overhaul of the continent’s electricity grids will now need to be sped up, says the leaked text, seen by the Guardian.

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Categories: Environment

Prospect of warmer winters does not mean fewer deaths, study finds

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/06/26 - 1:26am

New scientific study pours cold water on the theory that mortality rates will drop in winter months as the climate warms, reports Climate News Network

Global warming is unlikely to mean that fewer people in northern latitudes will die from cold during the winter, according to a study by scientists in the US.

Despite arguments that an increase in death rates caused by global warming and increased summertime temperatures will be offset by a matching drop in mortality as winter temperatures also rise, the study cautions against assuming any such link as research suggests otherwise.

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Categories: Environment

EU ministers seek legally-binding and ambitious Paris climate deal

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/06/26 - 1:10am

Deal at UN climate summit later this year should be enforced through five-yearly reviews to avoid dangerous global warming, draft document shows

European Union ministers are seeking an ambitious, durable and legally-binding deal to curb global warming, enforced through five-yearly reviews, a draft of their position statement for UN climate talks shows.

EU environment ministers meet on 18 September in Brussels to iron out their joint position ahead of the UN talks in Paris in December. Diplomats have already drawn up a draft text.

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Categories: Environment

Great Barrier Reef water quality to be monitored in real time in pollution crackdown

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/06/26 - 1:10am

Queensland government defends coalminer’s investment in online tracking tool, which will be showcased to world heritage committee ahead of Unesco’s final ruling on ‘in danger’ listing

The Queensland government will use new real-time water quality monitoring to take action against industrial and agricultural polluters of the Great Barrier Reef, says the state environment minister.

Steven Miles also defended the role of the state’s largest coalminer, BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance (BMA), as a cornerstone investor in the “eReef” tool, despite carbon-driven climate change being the reef’s greatest long-term threat.

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Categories: Environment

Lancashire county council rejects Roseacre Wood fracking bid

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2015/06/26 - 12:50am

Councillors unanimously refuse planning application for fracking at Roseacre Wood, and will meet again on Monday to decide on Preston New Road site

Councillors have unanimously refused a planning application for fracking in Lancashire in a move which has been welcomed by environmental campaigners.

Lancashire County Council’s development control committee turned down Cuadrilla’s application to explore for shale gas by drilling, hydraulically fracking and testing the flow of gas at Roseacre Wood, Roseacre, between Preston and Blackpool.

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Categories: Environment

Minimal sound and almost no fury: life in the shadow of Australia's windfarm 'hell'

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2015/06/25 - 11:20pm

As the political cacophony about ‘noisy, visually awful’ wind turbines reaches fever pitch, Calla Wahlquist visits the farmers who host one of the southern hemisphere’s largest windfarms and finds them stubbornly unperturbed

Bernice Davies is not one to let confusion get in the way of hospitality. She rallied quickly after a brief pause to take in our odd request.

“Of course you’re welcome to stay,” she said. “But you won’t be able to hear the mills.”

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Categories: Environment

Havin' a giraffe! Safari selfies taken by the animals – in pictures

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2015/06/25 - 11:00pm

Candid, cute, almost confessional ... these intimate wildlife shots are all thanks to Snapshot Serengeti, who hid 225 camera traps in the vast national park in Tanzania, and let everything from antelopes to zebras snap themselves in their natural savanna habitat. But can you name them all?

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Categories: Environment

Star of the blackthorn

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2015/06/25 - 9:30pm

Glapthorn Cow Pastures, Northamptonshire The black hairstreak has always been a rare butterfly, found only in woods between Peterborough and Oxford

A month ago, the winding path leading through the undergrowth into Glapthorn Cow Pastures was overhung by tumbling masses of hawthorn blossom. In the early evening its heavy, earthy, lily scent cascaded in fluid torrents on to the entrant. Now its creamy petals have become leaf litter, their welcoming scent superseded by a dog rose sprinkled with delicate pink blooms releasing wafts of fragrance into the morning air.

This was once a parkland-like wood pasture, and the original trees are scattered through the wood, their broad and low umbelliferous canopies contrasting with the upward thrust of the younger ashes and oaks released when grazing ceased 100 years ago. The southern half of the wood has dense lumpy thickets of blackthorn scrub, from which nightingales broadcast their whipped and warbling fanfare.

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Categories: Environment

Greenhouse gas blamed for 'climate expulsion' driving temperature rises across Pacific nations

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2015/06/25 - 8:20pm

Australian Bureau of Meteorology study finds temperatures across 13 Pacific nations will keep climbing, even with radical cuts to greenhouse gas emissions

Sometime in the mid 1990s, probably unnoticed by anyone, a region of the Pacific that is home to more than a dozen nations experienced something known as a “climate expulsion”.

That was the point in time when the increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere pushed temperatures higher than anything that natural climate changes alone could have delivered.

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Categories: Environment

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The Field Lab - Thu, 2015/06/25 - 4:48pm
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Categories: Sustainable SW Blogs

Deal to build $450m windfarm struck after renewable energy bill passed

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2015/06/25 - 4:20pm

Consortium including GE and Downer EDI agrees to finance and build the 75-turbine Victorian windfarm, which will be Australia’s third-largest

A deal has been struck to build a $450m windfarm in Victoria, days after the renewable energy target finally passed parliament.

A consortium of five companies, including America’s GE and the Australian contractor Downer EDI, has agreed to finance and build the 75-turbine Ararat windfarm in south-west Victoria.

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Categories: Environment

Barack Obama interviews David Attenborough on climate change - video

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2015/06/25 - 4:06pm
US president Barack Obama discusses climate change and the future of life on Earth with Sir David Attenborough, in an interview to be broadcast simultaneously in the UK and US on BBC1 on Sunday at 10.30pm. Obama confesses to the broadcaster and naturalist that he's been a huge admirer of Attenborough's work for a very long time. Attenborough presented his first natural history programme for the BBC in 1954 Continue reading...
Categories: Environment

David Attenborough and Barack Obama face-to-face in TV interview

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2015/06/25 - 2:32pm

Acclaimed naturalist plants – sometimes prickly – questions for US president during visit to White House

It sounds like a scenario from a fantasy dinner party: the most powerful man on the planet interviewing one of the world’s most beloved naturalists about his life story, about climate change and the future of life on Earth.

But in May, it has emerged, this encounter did happen, when Barack Obama invited Sir David Attenborough to the White House for a televised discussion – in which he, the US president, was to ask the questions of the broadcaster, not the other way round.

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Categories: Environment

Floating robots primed for release to capture elusive ocean data

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2015/06/25 - 1:00pm

Scientists will release robots next week that can dive to 2,000 metres to gather previously unattainable information from the Indian Ocean

Scientists will embark on a voyage across the Indian Ocean next week, distributing floating robots to gather data about the largely unknown biology of the ocean.

For about 10 years 3,600 Argo free-floating sensors have been drifting around and gathering data about the temperature and salinity of the ocean.

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Categories: Environment
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