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Climate takeover: meet the first-time voters guest editing the Guardian US

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2020/09/21 - 3:00am

Seven Generation Z climate activists from across the United States come together to curate a special edition of the Guardian US. Read their section here

Generation Z didn’t cause the climate crisis, but we’re paying for it. The damage caused by global heating is already doing untold damage to the entire planet, disproportionately hurting BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and people of color). For our generation, the toll isn’t just physical, but mental: solastalgia, the stress caused by environmental changes to one’s home, is on the rise.

We are seven first-time voters from diverse backgrounds across the United States who have come together to curate a special climate edition of the Guardian. We want to bring attention to the physical and mental burdens that our generation is saddled with due to the negligence of past generations. We want to highlight environmental justice during this election season. And we will be keeping environmental issues in mind when we all vote. – Alice Shinn

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Categories: Environment

National Park In Thailand Takes Unique Action Against Litterbugs

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2020/09/21 - 2:47am

Officials at the park are enacting revenge on those who dare to litter. You toss trash in the park, authorities will register you with the police. They will also mail your garbage back to your home.

Categories: Environment

'Hard, Dirty Job': Cities Struggle To Clear Garbage Glut In Stay-At-Home World

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2020/09/21 - 2:00am

As people stay at home, they are putting out more trash, from pizza boxes to cardboard delivery boxes. That's putting a big strain on residential garbage collectors.

(Image credit: Cindy Ord/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

How coral transplants could rescue Turkey's threatened reefs

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2020/09/20 - 11:15pm

Scientists are carefully moving the sea animals to new locations to save them from construction schemes

Transplanting coral is difficult work. “You only have 20 minutes to dive down 30 metres and transplant the coral to the correct part of the rock, where hopefully it will live for hundreds of years,” explains Serço Ekşiyan, one of a small group of volunteers who have taken on the huge task of saving the corals around the Princes’ Islands (Adalar), a picturesque archipelago in the Marmara Sea about a 40-minute boat ride from Istanbul.

The Marmara Sea, made up of water from the Black Sea and the Mediterranean, is home to 24 Alcyonacea coral species whose existence is threatened by the onslaught of nearby property development. Among those disappearing are sea whips, sea pens, sea fans and some types of red and yellow soft corals.

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Categories: Environment

Dozens of pilot whales feared stranded in Tasmania's Macquarie Harbour

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2020/09/20 - 8:06pm

About 70 whales believed to be stuck on a sandbar on state’s remote west coast

Scientists and whale rescue crews are rushing to Tasmania’s remote west coast after reports a pod of about 70 whales has become stranded in Macquarie Harbour.

The whales were believed to be stuck on a sandbar inside Macquarie Heads, near the harbour mouth, a spokeswoman for the Department of Primary Industry, Parks, Water and Environment said.

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Categories: Environment

Murray-Darling Basin: fight looms over NSW plan to license floodplain harvesting

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2020/09/20 - 4:14pm

Greens warn legalising the capture of floodwaters and diverting it to primarily irrigate cotton ‘spells end of the lower Darling river’

A new fight is brewing between farmers north and south of the Murrray-Darling Basin over the New South Wales government’s plan to license floodplain harvesting for the first time later this year, as doubts arise over data on river flows and the amounts being extracted.

A regulation which makes the practice legal in the meantime is set to become the flashpoint this week, with the minor parties and Labor planning to disallow it.

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Categories: Environment

World's richest 1% cause double CO2 emissions of poorest 50%, says Oxfam

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2020/09/20 - 4:01pm

Charity says world’s fast-shrinking carbon budget should be used to improve lot of poorest

The wealthiest 1% of the world’s population were responsible for the emission of more than twice as much carbon dioxide as the poorer half of the world from 1990 to 2015, according to new research.

Carbon dioxide emissions rose by 60% over the 25-year period, but the increase in emissions from the richest 1% was three times greater than the increase in emissions from the poorest half.

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Categories: Environment

don't stumble...

The Field Lab - Sun, 2020/09/20 - 2:27pm

Proverbs 4:12 When thou goest, thy steps shall not be straitened; and when thou runnest, thou shalt not stumble. 13 Take fast hold of instruction; let her not go: keep her; for she is thy life. 14 Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil men. 15 Avoid it, pass not by it, turn from it, and pass away. 16 For they sleep not, except they have done mischief; and their sleep is taken away, unless they cause some to fall. 17 For they eat the bread of wickedness, and drink the wine of violence. 18 But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day. 19 The way of the wicked is as darkness: they know not at what they stumble. 

Categories: Sustainable SW Blogs

'He had green eyes': Florida man will paint alligator that attacked him

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2020/09/20 - 1:27pm
  • Mark Johnson given 60 stitches for deep wound in leg
  • ‘He wanted to roll so he could start dismembering,’ artist says

In several decades as a professional artist, painting Florida’s marine life, Mark Johnson has developed a pretty good eye for detail. Now the outdoorsman whose website offers “realistic portrayals created primarily from memory and imagination” is about to start work on a gritty new work: an alligator with rows of perfect white teeth, clamped on the thigh of a man out walking his dog.

It will be a self-portrait. On a morning stroll with his golden retriever Rex along a canal near his home in Port St Lucie, Johnson was attacked by an 8ft 6in alligator that lunged from the water, raced towards him and chomped down on his leg, causing a deep wound that required 60 stitches.

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Categories: Environment

My country may be swept away by the climate crisis if the rest of the world fails to uphold its promises | President David Kabua

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2020/09/20 - 1:00pm

Now is a time for courage. It will take sacrifices from everyone for us all to survive, the president of the Marshall Islands writes

My country joined the United Nations nearly 30 years ago, in September 1991. But unless my fellow member states take action, we may also be forced from it: the first country to see our land swept away by climate change.

As the UN general assembly meets in New York, celebrating the 75th anniversary of its formation, we must ask: how many of the 193 nations that it brings together will survive to reach its centenary?

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Categories: Environment

The Guardian view on a just transition: make the red wall green | Editorial

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2020/09/20 - 10:30am

Britain’s commitment to a net zero carbon footprint by 2050 can be the catalyst for a jobs revolution in regions beyond London and the south-east. The government is doing far too little to make it happen

As Britain confronts the unemployment crisis that will blight so many lives this winter, the chancellor, Rishi Sunak, has promised to be “creative” in introducing new measures to support jobs. Mr Sunak still seems stubbornly determined to end, next month, the furlough scheme that remains a lifeline for so many workers. But the misery that will ensue appears to have persuaded him that some kind of alternatives must be found. Inevitably they will be cheaper and less effective, but when the criticism comes, Mr Sunak will protest that it is not the government’s role to indefinitely prop up businesses that the pandemic has consigned to the past.

What about propping up the future then? The government’s failure to develop any kind of plan to meet legally binding net zero targets has flown under the radar in recent months, as coronavirus-related chaos reigns in Whitehall. With the exception of a minimalist £2bn “green homes” grant, some new cycle routes and other minor measures, Boris Johnson’s promise to “build back better” has so far proved to be of purely alliterative value.

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Categories: Environment

Charleston aims to force fossil fuel companies to pay $2bn to combat climate crisis

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2020/09/20 - 1:30am

South Carolina city sues large oil firms, claiming they concealed knowledge that their product would cause damage to coastal cities around the world

Charleston, the architectural jewel of the US south, has survived the ravages of revolutionary wars, an earthquake and even a siege waged by the notorious pirate Blackbeard. But the city now needs saving from its largest existential threat yet – the climate crisis.

Flooding has, in recent years, become a regular menace to streets lined with colonial and Georgian buildings. Protecting the historic core of South Carolina’s largest city from being consumed by the rising seas now comes with such a hefty price tag – around $2b – that Charleston is pinning its hopes on a bold gambit to force fossil fuel companies to foot the bill.

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Categories: Environment

Ministers accused of blocking plans to ban burning of UK peatlands

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2020/09/19 - 11:33pm

Failure to protect fragile moors habitat fans doubts about the government’s green credentials

Ministers have been accused of deliberately stalling plans to ban the environmentally damaging process of burning peat bogs, in a further sign of government support for people who enjoy shooting grouse on moorlands.

After a week in which it emerged that people who shoot grouse had been exempted from the “rule of six”, which limits gatherings in the fight against Covid-19, activists believe the environment secretary, George Eustice, who is from a farming family, is blocking moves to ban peat burning.

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Categories: Environment

Scott Morrison refuses to commit to net zero emissions target by 2050

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2020/09/19 - 7:42pm

PM says he’s ‘more interested in the doing’ as he walks back amount of new generation needed to replace Liddell coal plant from 1,000MW to 250MW

Scott Morrison has walked back a declaration from last week that 1,000MW of new generation will be needed once the ageing Liddell coal plant leaves the system, and declined to sign up to a net zero target by 2050, because he is “more interested in the doing”.

As part of the government’s much vaunted “gas-led recovery”, the prime minister said last week in relation to the Liddell transition, “We estimate that some 1,000 MW of new dispatchable generation is needed to keep prices down.”

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Categories: Environment

watermelon picnic...

The Field Lab - Sat, 2020/09/19 - 3:24pm
Categories: Sustainable SW Blogs

From simple actions to self-reliance: Josh Byrne's sustainable home upgrades for every budget

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2020/09/19 - 1:00pm

Retrofitting your house or apartment to use less energy doesn’t have to be an expensive exercise

Improving the sustainability performance of your home can bring big benefits. Firstly, an energy-efficient home is more comfortable, requiring less heating and cooling. It is more cost-effective to run, saving you money through reduced bills. Then there’s the environmental benefits.

By reducing energy imported from the grid and replacing this with locally generated solar energy, you can dramatically reduce household carbon emissions. There are plenty of other things that can be done to improve the sustainability of your home too, from installing water-saving features and low-energy appliances through to choosing low-impact building materials when renovating.

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Categories: Environment

Greener BP must do more than talk tough on the climate crisis

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2020/09/19 - 8:00am

A company steeped in oil and gas production may not find it easy to convince investors of its environmental credentials

‘This is serious stuff,” said BP’s Bernard Looney. The chief executive, speaking last week at the oil giant’s three-day investor event, was talking tough on the need to tackle the climate crisis. He could just as easily have been referring to the existential tightrope that BP, and others in the fossil fuel industry, will need to walk between investor confidence and the rising public pressure to slash their greenhouse gas emissions.

Over the course of three days and 10 hours of executive presentations, Looney’s new leadership team sought to convince investors that their plan to become a carbon neutral company will allow them to toe this line successfully. BP’s nascent renewable energy interests will grow while the oil production business that has powered the company for over 110 years will begin to shrink within the next decade. A whiplash of clean energy innovation, carbon capture technologies and emissions offsetting schemes will then power the company to net zero carbon by 2050.

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Categories: Environment

America is at war with wildfires. Yet Trump is on the side of the inferno | David Sirota

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2020/09/19 - 3:45am

Trump long ago made clear that in the with-us-or-against-us climate war, he is against us and has enthusiastically joined the side of the inferno

The fires that continue to incinerate the west coast, pump carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and blanket the country in smoke are the latest sign that the climate crisis has made landfall in America and is torching its way inward like an occupying army overwhelming battle-weary fortifications. Only, that military metaphor seems a bit off, because if you look carefully, you can see that we are not valiantly losing a battle – our government has made it impossible for us to even fight, and has arguably taken the side of the invasion.

Related: Trump 'associates' offered Assange pardon in return for emails source, court hears

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Categories: Environment

Climate change, Covid – our hearts ache. But a new era is possible. We can do it | Rebecca Solnit

Guardian Environment News - Sat, 2020/09/19 - 3:16am

I understand the temptation to feel that what is wrong now will be wrong forever. But anguish and hope can coexist

If you’re heartsore at the quadruple crisis of the mismanaged pandemic, the resultant financial catastrophe grinding down so many people, the climate chaos dramatically evident in unprecedented fires in the west, hurricanes in the southeast, and melting ice in Greenland and the poles, and the corruption, human rights abuses, and creeping authoritarianism of the current regime, you’re not alone.

Related: Wealth of US billionaires rises by nearly a third during pandemic

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Categories: Environment

'Too late to stop it': California's future hinges on managing megafires

Guardian Environment News - Fri, 2020/09/18 - 10:00pm

This year’s historic blazes and apocalyptic skies will become routine. Hope lies in rethinking how we live with fire

California’s historic wildfires have served up astonishing scenes of destruction that have claimed several dozen lives, incinerated huge tracts of land and caused dystopian orange skies to loom over a populace choked by toxic smoke. But, in time, the sort of destruction and anguish suffered in 2020 may seem routine, even mild.

The record scale of the flames, which have consumed an area larger than the state of Connecticut, is bringing scientists’ expectations of the climate crisis into reality. Rather than merely entering a new but stable era, the US west is on a moving escalator to further extremes. “In 20 years from now, the current circumstances will feel more normal,” said Waleed Abdalati, former chief scientist of Nasa. “It’s not that we are all screwed, but it’s too late to put a stop to it. We can slow it, but we can’t stop it now.”

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Categories: Environment
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