Congressional Democrats Say Climate Change Is A Priority As They Control The House

NPR News - Environment - Tue, 2019/02/05 - 2:22pm

Two House committees are holding climate-related hearings on Wednesday. The Democrats are hoping to bring attention to the issue of climate change — an issue that was not a priority for Republicans.

Categories: Environment

Report: Global Warming Could Melt At Least A Third Of Himalayan Glaciers

NPR News - Environment - Tue, 2019/02/05 - 1:46pm

If temperatures continue to rise, glaciers would begin to disappear, with a serious impact on the area's water resources.

(Image credit: Whitworth Images/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

Runner suffocated mountain lion after animal attacked him, officials say

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2019/02/05 - 11:35am

Colorado Parks and Wildlife says man fought off the cougar, hiked out of the area after attack and drove himself to hospital

Wildlife officials say a man who fought off a young mountain lion on a northern Colorado trail killed the animal by suffocating it.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife says the man was running alone near Fort Collins when the lion attacked him from behind after the movement apparently triggered its hunting instincts.

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Categories: Environment

Belgian minister resigns over school-strike conspiracy claims

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2019/02/05 - 11:16am

Joke Schauvliege falsely claimed state agencies had evidence that children’s climate change protests were a ‘set-up’

A Belgian environment minister has been forced to resign after falsely claiming the country’s intelligence services held evidence that children skipping school to demonstrate over climate change were being directed by unnamed powers.

Joke Schauvliege, a minister in Flanders, where the school-strikes movement first emerged, provoked a wave of criticism of the wider political class after suggesting the protests were a “set-up” and “more than spontaneous actions of solidarity”.

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Categories: Environment

Trump Accused Of Moving Too Fast With Plans To Drill For Oil In Alaska

NPR News - Environment - Tue, 2019/02/05 - 3:05am

The Trump administration is holding public hearings on its push to drill oil in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Critics say the process is being rushed and downplays environmental risks.

Categories: Environment

Townsville flooding: reports of two men found dead – live

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 9:54pm

Bodies are believed to be the men, aged 21 and 23, reported missing yesterday. Follow all the developments

4.54am GMT

Never leave a kangaroo behind.

2 RAR soldiers demonstrate humility and affection by rescuing our national native symbol. A 'Skippy' soldier rescuing 'Skippy'. Well done to the men and women of the battalion. Great work#yourADF! pic.twitter.com/9PBDw1Chl3

4.40am GMT

We learned earlier today that the Bruce Highway had reopened. That is crucial news given the food shortages that had arisen.

However there are still major road closures elsewhere, as this statement from the Queensland roads minister, Mark Bailey, points out.

“The Finders Highway is expected to be cut for some days with the Macrossan Bridge over the Burdekin River under water,” he said.

“We have also recorded multiple landslips on Hervey Range Road, between Townsville and Charters Towers, as well as a major landslip on Paluma Range.

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Categories: Environment

Court Orders Vale To Stop Using Tailings Dams As Death Toll Climbs Above 120

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 9:06pm

As more bodies are found and about 200 more are feared buried beneath yards of sludge, a Brazilian judge ruled that the mining giant must refrain from disposing chemical waste at eight of its dams.

(Image credit: Rodney Costa/Barcroft Media via Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

David Bernhardt: Trump selects former oil lobbyist to oversee interior department

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 7:08pm

The deputy secretary has been running the department since Ryan Zinke stepped down at the end of the year

David Bernhardt, a former oil and gas and water lobbyist, will be nominated to run the interior department, Donald Trump tweeted.

I am pleased to announce that David Bernhardt, Acting Secretary of the Interior, will be nominated as Secretary of the Interior. David has done a fantastic job from the day he arrived, and we look forward to having his nomination officially confirmed!

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Categories: Environment

Trump To Nominate Acting Interior Secretary David Bernhardt To Lead Department

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 3:27pm

President Trump announced plans to nominate acting Interior Secretary David Bernhardt, a former lobbyist, to head the agency.

Categories: Environment

The Guardian view on fracking: the end can’t come soon enough | Editorial

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 11:23am
Launching a new fossil fuel industry was a bad idea, and a coalition of localists and environmentalists appears close to defeating it

Less than four months after what was supposed to be a new beginning for fracking in England, when Cuadrilla resumed operations at its Preston New Road site in Lancashire, it appears increasingly unlikely that there is a future for this industry in the UK at all. Minor earthquakes rapidly halted fracking at Preston New Road, and led to a row about whether the legal limit for underground seismic activity, set at 0.5-magnitude after earthquakes in 2011, is unrealistically low. Now Jim Ratcliffe, chairman of petrochemicals firm Ineos and the UK’s richest man, has launched his own attack both on the 0.5 limit and on the planning system that has seen all three of Ineos’s applications to frack rejected by local authorities – although two were later granted on appeal. The government’s refusal to change the law in the industry’s favour, he said, means that it is “shutting down shale by the backdoor”.

Having watched the success of the shale gas industry in the US since 2000, Mr Ratcliffe and politicians including former chancellor George Osborne decided that fracking – which involves pumping water, sand and chemicals 2km underground at high pressure – should become a UK industry too. Senior Conservatives including the current energy minister, Claire Perry, agreed. They were wrong. The UK is unsuited to fracking, for political and geological reasons that have become clearer over the past few years, and all the money (Ineos alone has spent £150m) and effort expended on trying to foist a new and dirty industry on communities who do not want it has been thrown away.

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Categories: Environment

Sheffield tree protesters win wrongful arrest payout

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 11:02am

Seven protesters arrested between November 2016 and February 2017 win £24,300 from South Yorkshire police

Campaigners who were wrongfully detained while protesting against tree felling in Sheffield have been given a £24,300 payout by South Yorkshire police.

The seven protesters were arrested between November 2016 and February 2017 and detained for up to nine hours under an obscure trade union law that was incorrectly used, the police watchdog found last year.

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Categories: Environment

'Among the worst in OECD': Australia's addiction to cheap, dirty petrol

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 10:00am

Improving the quality of high sulphur fuel could offer 5% improvement on CO2 emissions ‘overnight’

Australia’s cheap, dirty petrol ranks among the worst of the OECD nations, yet the peak industry body representing Australian petrol refiners has rejected the criticism, saying the industry should be given until 2027 to adjust to stricter regulations.

Paul Barrett, the chief executive of the Australian Institute of Petroleum, hit back at critics who have described Australian petrol as low quality thanks to its sulphur content.

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Categories: Environment

The Climate For Climate Politics In 2019

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 9:20am

Even though the Midwest has been gripped by the icy polar vortex, that doesn’t mean climate change isn’t happening, despite what you may see on Twitter. In the beautiful Midwest,

(Image credit: Astrid Riecken/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

Europe's most deprived areas 'hit hardest by air pollution'

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 9:05am

Exposure to particulate matter and ozone highest in poor eastern European states, says study

Europe’s poorest, least educated and most jobless regions are bearing the brunt of the air pollution crisis, according to the first official stocktake of its kind.

Nearly half of London’s most deprived neighbourhoods exceeded EU nitrogen dioxide (NO2) limits in 2017 compared with 2% of its wealthiest areas.

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Categories: Environment

A Conversation With Rep. Ro Khanna

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 9:05am

The California Democrat sits on the House Oversight Committee.

(Image credit: Office of Ro Khanna)

Categories: Environment

Government's fracking policy will cause energy crisis, says UK's richest man

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 6:13am

Ministers are playing politics with the country’s future, says Ineos boss Sir Jim Ratcliffe

The UK’s richest person has launched an attack on the government’s fracking rules, accusing ministers of policies that will cause an “energy crisis” and “irreparable damage” to the economy.

Sir Jim Ratcliffe, chairman of petrochemicals firm Ineos, pledged four years ago to start a UK fracking revolution but the company has been bogged down in planning battles and is yet to drill or frack a single well.

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Categories: Environment

Oregon Bottle Deposit System Hits 90 Percent Redemption Rate

NPR News - Environment - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 5:01am

The expanded program includes more types of containers and benefits from a cleaner mix of recyclable materials, which is easier to sell than the mishmash of waste that ends up in curbside bins.

(Image credit: Jes Burns/Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Categories: Environment

The shutdown is over. Can Joshua Tree recover?

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 4:00am

Off-road drivers and vandals damaged the fragile ecosystem, prompting fears it could take ‘300 years’ to bounce back

As Ethan Peck’s boots crunch through the desert sands, he stops to point out tracks on the side of the trail: not coyote or other wildlife, but dog prints. “It’s just sad that people would do this,” says Peck, who owns Joshua Tree Adventures and has lived in the area for seven years. “You’re not allowed to hike with your dog [off-leash] in any national park.”

Related: Joshua Tree national park 'may take 300 years to recover' from shutdown

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Categories: Environment

Swansea tidal lagoon plan revived – without government funding

Guardian Environment News - Mon, 2019/02/04 - 3:06am

Firm hopes to build scheme within six years after ministers rejected it for being too costly

The backers of a pioneering project to harness energy from the tides off the Welsh coast have rebooted the scheme and believe they can build it without the help of government.

With the recent failure of two major nuclear projects, attention has turned to alternatives to fill the low-carbon power gap, with developers of windfarms and small nuclear plants among those vying for government support.

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Categories: Environment

Townsville flooding: mayor insists Ross River dam is safe and criticises 'armchair critics' – live

Guardian Environment News - Sun, 2019/02/03 - 9:54pm

Thousands of homes at risk as Townsville braces for ‘once-in-a-century’ flood peak. Follow all today’s developments

4.54am GMT

Two NRL players have been using a boat to help people in Townsville to safety. Townsville is the headquarters of the North Queensland Cowboys.

Antonio Winterstein’s wife, Brooke, posted a call out on Facebook offering to ferry people to the Army barracks.

Star @nthqldcowboys @NRL stars John Asiata and Antonio Winterstein were community heroes today as they helped ferry families from their flooded properties in Townsville @7NewsTownsville pic.twitter.com/VKKz6OvThD

4.42am GMT

Where has the #BigWet rain fallen this week across inland #Queensland? Not much for the Darling unfortunately, but plenty for parched catchments in the Gulf and upper Lake Eyre basin across #NWQld. A dramatic shift after weeks of 40+ #heatwave! Thanks to @BOM_SA for the graphic. pic.twitter.com/8NubWI2jCO

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Categories: Environment
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