|IndyWatch Environment News Feed Archiver|
IndyWatch Environment News Feed was generated at World News IndyWatch.
Early Monday morning, pipeline protesters in the Jefferson National Forest erected a new aerial blockade on Pocahontas Road near Narrows, VA. The blockade consists of a protester on a platform 30 feet in the air, suspended from a horizontal rope tied to surrounding trees.
Banners at the site read WHICH SIDE ARE YOU ON? and STILL HERE. Pocahontas Road is a Forest Service road and Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) access road that leads to the construction site for MVPs intended boring through Peters Mountain, under the Appalachian National Scenic Trail. The presence of this roadblock prevents MVPs continued construction of the access road and boring site, which has already been significantly delayed for well over 50 days by the presence of protester Nutty in an aerial blockade on the same road less than 3 miles away.
I am taking a stand on Peters Mountain to prevent the further devastation of these lands by the Mountain Valley Pipeline, said Fern MacDougal, the protester suspended in the new blockade. Cutting through delicate karst topography and 300 miles of contiguous forest and family farms seized by eminent domain, MVP threatens to damage the health and wellbeing of poor and oppressed communities along the pipeline route by threatening the air, soil, and water. This pipeline will catalyze the growth and expansion of gas extraction across Appalachia, an industry which has already caused permanent harm to many communities. We are dedicated to resisting this reckless endangerment of the land and people as long as MVP continues to operate. MacDougal further stated that she was inspired to take this action by monopod sitter Nutty and by David Buckel, an LGBTQ rights lawyer who died in April after setting himself on fire as a protest against the use of fossil fuels.
Mountain Valley Pipeline, LLC has faced significant resistance to its plans for this 42-inch diameter...
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Over the past few months, CCAN worked with partners across Maryland to put on an art exhibition called Wonders of the Wind, which highlighted the beauty of wind power and the clean energy future. Nineteen artists created sculptures, paintings, and other original work inspired by the prospect of two offshore wind farms coming to our state. The exhibition opened in Ocean City where the turbines will be installed and closed in Baltimore where the manufacturing and assembly will be based.
So, why an art show?
Last year, Maryland took a huge step toward becoming the East Coast hub for offshore wind when our states Public Service Commission approved two applications for large wind farms off our coast. These projects promise thousands of jobs and enough energy to power over 500,000 homes. Now, those projects must secure federal permits in order to move forward.
This wont be an easy fight. There has already been a steady stream of opposition to offshore wind, mainly focused on the aesthetic appearance of wind turbines. Some elected officials have even referred to the turbines as visual pollution to which we say: what about actual pollution?
As an artist and an advocate, I deeply value the power of art to share stories and increase awareness about the critical issues we face today. Thats why I was so excited to work with a coalition of artists and environmental and faith-based allies to organize the Wonders of the Wind exhibition to highlight the beauty of wind power and a more just, sustainable future in Maryland.
We hosted receptions in Ocean City and Baltimore where attendees could view artwork, learn more about offshore wind from guest speakers, and even make pinwheels to take home with them as reminders of the wonders of the wind. Scroll down to see photos from these receptions and to view some of the artwork featured in the Wonders of the Wind exhibition.
California groundskeeper makes history by taking company to trial on claims it suppressed information about the weedkillers toxic impact
Following four new explosions at Indonesia's Merapi volcano on May 20 and 21, 2018, authorities have raised the alert level for the volcano from Alert Level 1 to 2 at 23:00 UTC on May 21, 2018. All residents living within 3 km (2 miles) are ordered to evacuate....... Read more
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Dr Carl-Friedrich Schleussner is head of climate science and impacts at Climate Analytics, Dr Joeri Rogelj is a research scholar at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) in Austria, and Dr Matthias Mengel is a postdoctoral scholar at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research.
The adoption of the Paris Agreement started a lively debate among scientists about the interpretation of several of its elements.
Of particular interest has been the long-term temperature goal of limiting warming to well below 2C or 1.5C above pre-industrial levels and the question of how progress against the goal should be tracked.
As there are a number of different observed datasets for global temperature as well as methods that use climate models it means different studies can arrive at different assessments.
But therein lies a problem. If studies use a different dataset or method from the one that underpins the Paris limits established in the IPCCs fifth assessment report (AR5) they are potentially tracking something different from 1.5C or 2C.
To provide consistent information for policymakers and not inadvertently shift goal posts new research needs to be linked to the science underlying the Paris Agreement.
The Paris Agreement represented a step-change not only for climate policy, but also for climate science. It provides an important new signpost for climate scientists who want to link their research to policy.
Effectively informing the climate policy debate, however, requires a fundamental understanding of the context of the Paris Agreements key elements. This includes its legal, policy and scientific aspects, such as the long-term temperature goal...
From an Article by Terry L. Jones, The Advocate, September 26, 2016
PLAQUEMINE Four men injured in the 2013 explosion at the Williams Olefins Geismar plant were awarded a total of $13.6 million in damages after an Iberville Parish jury late Monday night ruled the company, several plant officials and its parent company were negligent and knew with substantial certainty that the deadly fire could occur.
The jury rendered its verdict after five hours of deliberation in the three-week trial in the first of several lawsuits related to the incident that killed two people and injured 114 workers.
For a month they were trying to shift blame onto their shell company (Williams Olefins) and Im glad the jury saw right through it, Kurt Arnold, attorney for the plaintiffs, said after Monday nights verdict.
The jury found that Williams Oklahoma-based parent company was 95 percent responsible for the explosion and Williams Olefins was 3 percent to blame. The jury apportioned 1 percent of the blame on plant official Parker Tucker and 1 percent for plant supervisor Larry Bayer, who were also named defendants in the lawsuit. The jury absolved defendant Erick Comeaux, a plant official.
Plaintiff Shawn Thomas will receive the highest payout in damages, awarded $9.4 million for past and future medical bills, lost wages and mental anguish, and pain and suffering. Kris Devall was awarded $3.6 million and Eduardo Elizondo and Michael Dantone were awarded $360,000 and $205,000, respectively.
The company, in a written statement issued after the verdict, says it plans to appeal: Nothing about the tragic accident at the Williams Olefins facility in Geismar on June 13, 2013 was intentional. We believe there is sufficient Louisiana case law that supports our legal position, and we will appeal the jury verdict rendered in the 18th Judicial District Court.
In their closing arguments, attorneys for the four men asserted Williams Olefins administrative leaders and plant managers had some idea an explosion could occur, ignoring for seven years warnings that could have prevented the tragedy at the facility, which straddles the Ascension-Iberville line.
This accident doesnt happen if the board of directors and CEOs heeded the...
The hidden climate change impacts of the tourism industry
Lead bullet fragments in animal carcasses left behind by game hunters could be poisoning vultures in Botswana, according to a new study that echoes similar findings from elsewhere around the world. The African white-backed vulture (Gyps africanus) is already under grave threat. Its populations have declined by as much as 90 percent across much of its range, and the species is now classified as critically endangered on the IUCN Red List. Much of the catastrophic decline has come from the vultures consuming poisoned carcasses left behind by poachers wanting to prevent the birds from drawing attention to the animals they kill, or by pastoralists intending to kill predators to protect their livestock. A new study published in Science of the Total Environment now suggests that vultures face yet another threat: poisoning from lead ammunition. No other logical explanation Hunting wildlife, both for meat and sport, has long been a popular pursuit across the southern African nations. Botswana was considered a premier game-hunting destination prior to the ban of all hunting on state-owned land in 2014. Hunters often leave the internal organs of carcasses, known as gut piles, or even entire carcasses out in the bush. This poses a problem for the vultures, scientists say. Hunting is such a huge industry in Africa which led us to investigate whether vulture populations in Africa could be at risk of poisoning from ingesting spent ammunition, said lead author Rebecca Garbett, a researcher with the non-profit Raptors Botswana and a doctoral student at the
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This little piggy went on an adventure and it made one
unsuspecting person rather uncomfortable.
On early Friday morning, the North Ridgeville Police Department in Ohio received a distress call they couldnt quite believe. According to the man on the line, he was walking home from the train station when he realized there was someone unusual on his trail.
He went on to state that he was being followed by a pig and didnt know what to do, the police wrote online, hinting at the skepticism they felt at the time. A pig. Riiiight.
Credit: Alex GibbonsEvidently, the cops just assumed the man was intoxicated and seeing things in a drunken stupor as he walked home from a local bar. But they decided to send some officers out to help anyway, writing: "He was at least drunk enough to call the police on himself while hallucinating."
Credit: North Ridgeville Police DepartmentIt was then that the portly follower's adventure ended for that day, at least. She was loaded into the cops' patrol car and driven to a kennel for safekeeping until her owner could be located.
After living his entire life with the same family, Rocky was
brought to a big public shelter in Texas, and his family told the
shelter it was because he was
too old. Before they left, they even asked the staff at the
shelter to put Rocky down but the shelter staff could see that
Rocky still had so much life left in him, and refused to fulfill
Credit: Shenandoah Shepherd RescueRocky had clearly led a hard life, and by the time he reached the shelter he seemed defeated and completely shut down. While he was the sweetest dog around, he was also confused and had no idea what was happening to him, and the staff who worked with him were worried.
Credit: Shenandoah Shepherd RescueThe shelter could see that Rocky would need some specialized care in order to heal, and so they contacted Shenandoah Shepherd Rescue in hopes that they could take him on. The rescue quickly agreed and transferred him to Virginia, where they immediately placed him into a foster home and began the long journey of helping him heal.
Chad is a
Staffordshire terrier mix who loves to play and socialize, and
who always has the biggest smile on his face. Yet hes been stuck in
a shelter for the last five years, and the shelter staff cant
Hes just a big old chunky, sweet, sloppy-kissing, bouncy, happy guy, Layne Dicker, a volunteer at the Best Friends Animal Society shelter in Mission Hills, California, told The Dodo. Hes been at the shelter for a crazy amount of time.
Credit: Best Friends Animal SocietyFive years ago, Chad turned up at a crowded city shelter run by Los Angeles Animal Services. Fortunately, he didnt stay there for long rescuers transferred him to the no-kill shelter run by Best Friends Animal Society, where Chad would get individual attention and lots of playtime outside.
Credit: Best Friends Animal SocietyHe has some challenging aspects that make him harder to find a home for, Michelle Sathe, public relations specialist for Best Friends Society, told The Dodo. He is very picky about his people, so hes what we call a relationship-building dog. Someone who would be interested in adopting Chad would need to come to the center several times to build a relationship with him, and thats really his primary obstacle.
Credit: Best Friends Animal SocietyDicker, whos been volunteering at the s...
Greenlands long winter season can be difficult for stray
animals. The snowstorms and bitter cold can last well into spring
which means that, for cats and dogs
fending for themselves, finding a safe haven is essential.
In mid-April, a young tabby cat was picked up off the streets of Nuuk, Greenlands capital, and brought to area shelter Dyrenes Venner (which translates roughly to Protector of Animals in Greenland).
Stray and lost cats have a really tough time during the winters up here, Inunnguaq Christiansen, a board member at Dyrenes Venner, told The Dodo. With freezing temperatures and frequent storms, they often have to seek shelter in the basements of older buildings.
Credit: Facebook/Dyrenes VennerVolunteers named the friendly cat Ulla, and it was clear from the start just how grateful she was to be safe and warm. Ulla immediately made herself at home, cozying up to her rescuers, as well as the other cats, dogs and guinea pigs in the shelter.
Credit: Inunnguaq ChristiansenAt just over a year old, Ullas motherly nature might have been a hint to her rescuers that there was something unusual about the new arrival. But no one guessed that the little cat might be hiding a secret.
Developing countries worldwide are expanding their protected area networks, and a recent paper that examines how Madagascar greatly expanded its own protected area system over the past decade and a half may have valuable lessons for how they should proceed. The government of Madagascar committed to tripling its protected area system at the World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa in 2003. By 2016, protected area coverage in the country had actually quadrupled, from 1.7 to 7.1 million hectares. Whereas most protected areas (PAs) established in Madagascar prior to 2003 were managed solely by the Malagasy government, post-2003 PAs adopted a variety of new management and governance systems. The aggressive growth of Madagascars PA system and the diversity of approaches employed make for a particularly poignant case study, according to Charlie Gardner, a researcher with the Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology at the UKs University of Kent and the lead author of a recent paper published in the journal Biological Conservation that looks at what other developed countries can take away from Madagascars experience. Madagascar is a fascinating place to study protected areas (which are our most important conservation strategy, covering 15% of the planets land surface) because i) it is one of the worlds top conservation priorities due to unparalleled levels of endemism, ii) it is one of the poorest countries on Earth, with a 70% rural population that often depend heavily on natural resources, and iii) since 2003 it has been busy expanding its protected area system
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For decades, the Sandpoint to Spokane, railroad funnel community, who cherishes and relies on the clean water, air, and lands of beautiful Lake Pend Oreille and north Idaho for our shared economy and life ways, has endured the ongoing dangers and pollution of Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway. The company hauls 95 percent of the volatile, fracked, Bakken crude oil, all of the heavy metal-laden, Powder River Basin coal, and many other toxic substances through the region, via its Northwest pipeline-on-wheels. It spews coal dust and diesel emissions, risks and degrades the health and safety of resident and visiting people and wildlife with pollution, noise, hazardous materials transport, derailments, and accidents, including three wrecked, coal and corn trains within 33 miles of Sandpoint, between Ma...
Karachi, the capital of the Pakistani province of Sindh, home to over 21 million people and the fourth most populous city proper in the world, is experiencing severe heatwave over the past couple of days, with temperatures rising up to 43 C (109.4 F) and...... Read more
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from Freedom News
Campaigners against opencast mining in Pont Valley have warned that aggressive police tactics are leading to detentions of people who have committed no crime following the latest set of protests at the site.
Yesterday at around 1pm, Durham cops arrested a walker on a public footpath close to the Bradley opencast site in Dipton. He was searched, arrested and detained on suspicion of intent to commit criminal damage for having a bike lock in his possession. In a statement the man said:
What this arrest represents is a step towards an ugly precedent that will impact all protestors. I was arrested without committing any crime and detained for the remainder of the day. If this is seen to be lawful it allows for potential protestors to be arrested before committing any offence. This further infringes upon every persons democratic right to peacefully protest; reinforcing the position of the police as private security for companies instead of protecting the communities they claim to serve. Individual liberty cannot be removed on the whim by officers, as mine has been in the interest of Banks. All charges were dropped the same day.
The arrest follows on from a concerning radio interview (see 48:31) given by Durham chief inspector Richie Allen earlier this month in which he alleged that criminal and offending behaviour was taking place at or around the site, which he blamed on travelling activists. At the time activists against the Bradley project warned this was evidence of a worsening police attitude and bias against a peaceful campaign to protect the Pont Valley which has been ongoing for the last three decades.
On Friday the mining company started the removal of Brooms Pond. This habitat has been shown by ecologists in the past and continues to be claimed by locals to contain the protected species of great crested newts.
The same day Banks released a statement indicating th...
from Anarchist News
From Black Seed
We are happy to announce that the sixth issue of Black Seed has returned from the printers. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Black Seed, it is a FREE, newsprint, green anarchist publication in the spirit of the old Green Anarchy magazine out of Eugene Oregon. Unlike the old paper our Black Seed is more concerned with questions of ambiguity, indigeneity, and hostility as a form of life on earth. We invite you to join us by ordering a bundle of copies and sharing them with friends, as we are doing with you.
Here is the editorial.
The sixth issue of Black Seed continues an effort to challenge and expand the meanings of both Green and Anarchy. As editors and contributors, we not only wish to reject notions of the state and capitalism, but seek perspectives that are earth-focused, unexpected, or inhuman.
The binary of the Fearsome Sky God and Sweet Mother Earth is a historical fallacy. If we seek to speak of the earth, let it not be in language perverted and twisted by narrow-minded gender ideals, but in language that rejoices in the cruel glory of the natural world.
The preceding is from the call for submissions to this issue. Even beyond this issue and this theme, this callout stands as a marker for our continuing efforts to live and imagine differently in a world that has seen and foiled many previous such efforts.
Ambiguity is one word for the reality of things that cannot be said to be good or bad,...
Empty food shelves in Venezuela have left people hungry and in search of food wherever they can find it, which sometimes includes zoos and wildlife areas. Image found on flckr LAKE MARACAIBO, Venezuela The wildlife of Venezuela, one of 17 countries that account for 70 percent of the worlds biodiversity, has come under new pressure in addition to deforestation, toxic oil spills and illegal trafficking: human starvation. The economic crisis that began in 2014 with the collapse of the nations oil revenues, has now deepened to the point that Venezuela is considered a failed state by some analysts. Poverty currently holds more than 80 percent of the population in its grip, according to studies by four Venezuelan universities. Many critics place responsibility for the nations financial woes on Nicols Maduro, who won a second term as president on Sunday, amidst international accusations of election fraud, and concerns that Venezuelas inflation will hit a stunning 13,000 percent this year. Stores are empty and people sift through garbage for scraps. Many people call the countrys malnutrition the Maduro diet, laying blame for the gaunt figures that are common sights now [in the streets] on Mr. Maduro, reports the New York Times Although the national government officially denies the severity of the humanitarian emergency here, public services, agricultural productivity and even the commercial transportation network have deteriorated and as a consequence, so has access to food. As a result, people are feeding themselves wherever, and on whatever, they can. That has
Five countries that are home to some of the most iconic and threatened animal species in the world have joined forces in a high-tech collaboration to improve wildlife law enforcement. Cameroon, Gabon, the Republic of Congo, the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Central African Republic have formed the Africa Trade in Wildlife Information eXchange (Africa-TWIX) in response to the use by wildlife traffickers of new technologies to network and exchange information. The program is aimed at helping wildlife trade enforcement agencies benefit from the experience of their colleagues in neighboring countries. A forest elephant wades through a swampy area in Gabon. More than two-thirds of forest elephants have been killed for their ivory, which is prized by traffickers. Photo credit: Rhett A. Butler The approach, modeled on a similar program in the European Union, EU-TWIX, consists of a mailing list and a database, both secured, to centralize and classify information relating to wildlife infractions and seizures. The mailing list, currently sent to nearly 115 officials (out of 131 designated people) involved in wildlife and forestry law enforcement from the five countries, aims to enable Central Africas national enforcement authorities to communicate and collaborate on wildlife crime investigations. The participating countries select personnel to join the mailing list. Users include officials in these countries national police, customs, forestry services, justice departments, border forces, and environmental inspectorates and prosecutors, as well as representatives of Interpol and several other international organizations. Only designated agents from the five countries can access these tools
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Malaysias 13 new federal ministers were sworn in yesterday (Monday) in a ceremony at the National Palace (Istana Negara). A foreign minister is yet to be named.
Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad says there will eventually be 25 ministers in the Cabinet.
The swearing-in ceremony came just 12 days after Malaysian voters put an end to the rule of Barisan Nasional (the National Front).
Since the election on May 9 there has been a period of high drama during which the country has seen the swearing in of the worlds oldest prime minister, the release of the jailed opposition icon Anwar Ibrahim, and police raids on the home of the former prime minister Najib Razak.
The victory of the Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition was the oppositions first general election win since Malaysia gained its independence from Britain in 1957.
Najib and his wife, Rosmah Mansor, tried to go on a private plane to Indonesia the weekend after the election, but the immigration department has placed a ban on them leaving the country. Najib said in a tweet: I have just been informed by the immigration department of Malaysia that my family and I are no...
Draxs biomass carbon capture announcement exposes fallacy of supposed climate fix, campaigners say The environmental campaign group Biofuelwatch  slams Drax Power Stations announcement of a pilot carbon capture project at one of its biomass units in Yorkshire  as a greenwashing exercise and warns that it exposes the dangers of the supposed climate fix, 
The post DRAXs Biomass Carbon Capture Announcement Exposes Fallacy of BECCS appeared first on STOPGETREES.ORG.
Just 10 days after a powerful explosion at Mount Merapi in Magelang, Central Java, Indonesia, another phreatic eruption took place at the volcano at 01:25 local time on May 21, 2018 (18:25 UTC, May 20). The explosion lasted 19 minutes and ejected ash up to 4.3 km...... Read more
Tropical Cyclone "Sagar" made landfall in northwestern Somaliland and Djibouti on May 19, 2018 with maximum sustained winds of 93 km/h (58 mph), dropping heavy rain and causing severe flash floods. At least 19 people were killed in Somalia, Djibouti and...... Read more
Image via Colombia Reports Global Justice Ecology Project founders Orin Langelle and Anne Petermann have been fighting the ecological and social destruction of large-scale hydroelectric dams since 1993. GJEP is committed to exposing false solution to climate... Read More
PRESS RELEASE: May 21, 2018
Jessica Sims, firstname.lastname@example.org, 804-356-1228
Jamshid Bakhtiari, Chesapeake Climate Action Network, email@example.com,
Denise Robbins, Chesapeake Climate Action Network, firstname.lastname@example.org, 608-620-8819
RICHMOND, Virginia On Sunday, May 20, a group of activists protested Dominion Energys annual Riverrock festival to stand against its role in Virginias political system and draw attention to the dangers that would come with its proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline. The activists flew kites with messages opposing Dominion Energy and its proposed fracked-gas pipeline.
To see photos, please see here.
This event took place as Dominion faces increased scrutiny over its energy policies and political influence. The Atlantic Coast Pipeline particularly has garnered widespread opposition across the region. Tens of thousands of Virginia residents have sent petitions to Governor Ralph Northam opposing this pipeline and the similar Mountain Valley Pipeline.
Additionally, the band Blush Face refused to play at the Riverrock festival. The band stated that it didnt want to get involved with any kind of river celebration Dominion put on because of their actions and support of the pipeline campaigns and coal ash disposal. Although they claim to give back to the community and pretend to care about our river, we feel that Riverrock is more of a facade. We love celebrating music and everything outdoors, but we dont love where Dominions interests are with those things. They pollute our shared resources and threaten our home for their corporate interest and we dont want to play at their party.
Last year, 48 percent of Dominion shareholders voted in favor of a resolution calling on the companys board of directors to report on how the company will address climate change. This is far more support than similar shareholder resolutions have ever achieved.
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We raised almost $9,000 of our $23,000 goal, allowing us to print and ship the Eostar/Spring Journal!
To celebrate, and to help us keep the ever-building momentum, were announcing new merch and a new deal!
For the next week, if you order our newest patch, the profit will go towards our fundraiserwhich means helping us print and ship the Litha/Summer edition of the Journal and getting the Journal crew to Oregon to start the new chapter.
The patches are 8x 8 and come in seven colors and will cost you only $6! Choose between green on grey, green on natural, forest green on light green, red on green, red on blue, red on black, and white on black.
To take advantage of this offer, head on over to our store and buy a Narwhal/Unicorn Earth First! patch. While youre there, feel free to browse around at all the other trend-setting merchandise we have for sale. Even the items that dont help our fundraiser, help the Collective pay our rent, salaries, and other basic needs.
If you have enough patches or dont have the space for any more material goods, feel free to make a straight up donation to us! That money will also go towards our fundraiser. Just go to our donation page to hook it up!
Walking Thunder can feel like a family trip around the continent of Africa if your parents were award-winning photographers and explorers. The mesmerizing film about the African elephant by husband-and-wife team Cyril Christo and Marie Wilkinson basks in wide-open landscapes, intimate conversations with Africas indigenous herders and hunters, and haunting, close-up stares from the largest living land animal on Earth. But the film is really about Lysander, Christo and Wilkinsons son, and we see much of the story through his eyes. Hes our guide as the family learns of the complex relationship that the Samburu, the Maasai and the Waliangulu peoples of East Africa have with the elephant. Even early on the film draws from more than a decade and a half of footage just as Lysander is beginning to walk and talk, his insatiable curiosity about elephants shifts the perspective that one might expect from a documentary on African wildlife. We soon discover with Lysander the dangers that elephants everywhere face, and he and his parents wrestle with the prospect of losing them forever. Even as governments around the world take strides toward ending the ivory trade, as China and the United Kingdom have done, poaching to supply tusks mostly to Asian markets continues. Some 20,000 elephants fall to poachers weapons each year, according to WWF, and thats just in Africa. The crisis has spilled beyond its shores, with illegal hunting of even the worlds smallest elephants in Borneo. And recent evidence confirms that poachers are
Green light for fracking - reasons to be cheerful?
Letter to Editor, Scranton Times Leader, May 19, 2018
Gov. Tom Wolf has once again proposed a common sense severance tax on natural gas operations in Pennsylvania. Bill OBoyles recent coverage spells out many of the benefits of taxing energy companies based on how much natural gas they produce.
The bill has bipartisan support, and Pennsylvania remains the only major natural gas-producing state that doesnt have a similar tax on production. It could lead to billions of dollars in revenue for initiatives throughout the Commonwealth.
A progressive tax on energy companies for the natural gas they produce using the natural resources of our state makes sense and is a necessary step for Pennsylvania.
But make no mistake this is not an environmental issue. This is a revenue issue.
The severance tax would be an important revenue tool for our state, but it should not overshadow or distract from key environmental issues facing Pennsylvania.
As Harrisburg debates a severance tax, essential regulations curbing dangerous methane emissions at natural gas sites remain unrealized. Methane, the primary component of natural gas, is a powerful greenhouse gas and is emitted alongside other pollutants that have been linked to a host of health issues from low birth weight to asthma to heart disease. As pro-industry groups like the Marcellus Shale Coalition push to kill the severance tax and protect energy conglomerates bottom lines, the DEP is critically underfunded. Officials say it is mathematically impossible for the agency to keep up with required safe drinking water inspections.
As the debate over a severance tax heats up, Pennsylvania citizens and lawmakers cannot confuse the energy industrys responsibility to pay its fair share in taxes with its responsibility to protect the air and water of our commonwealth and the health of our families and communities.
Joseph O. Minott, Executive Director and Chief Counsel
B. David Smith, Outreach Coordinator (412-954-8494),
Clean Air Council, Suite 300, 135 S. 19th Street, Philadelphia, PA, 19103
Are you funding fracking and nuclear weapon manufacturing?
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To limit global warming in 2100 to below 1.5C above pre-industrial levels, many scientists assume that the large-scale use of negative emissions in the latter half of the 21st century will be needed. Negative emissions suck CO2 out of the atmosphere, allowing a more gradual reduction of emissions in the near-term.
Integrated assessment models (IAMs) that generate energy and emission pathways to limit warming to 1.5C have generally relied on large amounts of bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) to provide the required negative emissions. Many deploy BECCS on a massive scale, allocating a land area up to five times the size of India to growing the biomass needed by 2100.
Integrated Assessment Models: IAMs are computer models that analyse a broad range of data e.g. physical, economic and social to produce information that can be used to help decision-making. For climate research, specifically, IAMs are typically used to project future greenhouse gas emissions and climate impacts, and the benefits and costs of policy options that could be implemented to tackle them.
Criticism of model reliance on BECCS has led researchers to examine the potential of natural climate solutions (NCS) to remove CO2 in the atmosphere through reforestation, land-use change and other ecosystem-based approaches.
Here, Carbon Brief uses the recently published review of NCS to examine how big a role they could play in contributing to negative emissions. This analysis shows that NCS could provide a sizable portion of the required emissions and reduce the need for BECCS in pathways limiting warming to below 1.5C, particularly when coupled with faster emissions reductions over the next few decades.
The antechinus is a strange little mouse-like creature that endures two to three weeks of marathon mating sessions that leave the male so exhausted that it ultimately dies. But suicidal mating is not all thats killing these animals. Habitat loss, climate change and threats from feral animals like cats, cattle and horses are driving two species of antechinus, both described only recently, to extinction. On May 11, the Australian government officially declared the silver-headed antechinus (Antechinus argentus) and the black-tailed dusky antechinus (Antechinus arktos) endangered. Both species live on remote mountaintops in Queensland, Australia. The silver-headed antechinus, first described in 2013, is known only from the forests of Kroombit Tops National Park in southeast Queensland and two other locations near the border of Queensland and New South Wales. The black-tailed dusky antechinus, described in 2014, is known from three isolated locations near the border of southeast Queensland and northeast New South Wales. Both species occur only in high-altitude forests and have reached their altitudinal limits within their known distribution, the Australian governments Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC) wrote in the species assessments. It is pretty rare to uncover new mammals in developed countries such as Australia, Andrew Baker of the Queensland University of Technology, whose team discovered the two species, said in a statement. These two new species were discovered on misty mountain summits. They have likely retreated there as the climate has warmed, and there is now nowhere left for them to go. Andrew Baker with a black-tailed dusky antechinus. Image courtesy of Queensland University of Technology.
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Heavy rainfall that hit parts of Burundi on May 4, 2018 led to significant flooding in Gatumba, approximately 12 km (7 miles) from the city of Bujumbura. A joint assessment conducted on May 9 by Burundi Red Cross Society, the government of Burundi, OCHA, WFP,...... Read more
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