Environment

In A Drying Climate, Colorado's 'Water Cop' Patrols For Water Thieves

NPR News - Environment - Thu, 2018/10/11 - 2:08am

Sheriff's Deputy Dave Huhn's job has become more important after a series of hot, dry summers have made farmers more desperate for water, and more willing to steal it or go to battle over it.

(Image credit: Luke Runyon/KUNC)

Categories: Environment

UK's housing stock 'needs massive retrofit to meet climate targets'

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 11:01pm

Hundreds of millions of pounds must be spent to achieve 80% cuts in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, report shows

Hundreds of millions of pounds must be spent on the UK’s draughty housing stock to meet the government’s climate change targets, with progress so far too slow to make the difference needed.

Repairing existing homes to a high standard, with insulation and renewable energy technology, would cut consumer bills and bring health improvements, a new report shows.

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Categories: Environment

People burning wet wood on inefficient stoves 'poisoning themselves'

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 10:14pm

Study highlights ‘shocking contribution’ of domestic wood and coal fires to air pollution, which causes 40,000 early deaths a year in the UK

People burning wet wood on inefficient stoves are poisoning themselves and their neighbours, according to a new report from a leading thinktank.

The IPPR study highlights the “shocking contribution” domestic wood and coal fires make to the UK’s air pollution crisis, which causes 40,000 early deaths a year and devastating health problems for hundreds of thousands of others.

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Categories: Environment

Sinking Santa Cruz: climate change threatens famed California beach town

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 10:00pm

Similar challenges are sprouting up along the coast, and the golden sands and beach properties that define the state at risk

On a recent overcast October afternoon, yet another section of West Cliff Drive, the premier seafront street in Santa Cruz, California, was roped off as workers toiled to prevent it from crumbling into the Pacific Ocean.

The erosion gnawing away at this prized road, and the famed surfing beaches it overlooks, is emblematic of the relentless threat that climate change poses to California’s coastline. As the sea level rises and storms of growing strength smash into the coast, the golden sands and beach properties that have come to define the state are at risk.

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Categories: Environment

Canavan condemns business emissions self-regulation to meet Paris target

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 8:49pm

Minister says plan to coordinate climate response in absence of government policy interferes with democracy

Big business has entered discussions about a self-regulated suite of measures to help Australia meet its Paris commitments, weeks after the Morrison government abandoned the national energy guarantee.

The resources minister, Matt Canavan, accused Australia’s biggest energy companies of interfering in the democratic process, as climate experts and environmental groups lashed the government over the development on Thursday.

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Categories: Environment

Wyoming Proposes Its Own Methane Regulations As Federal Level Sees Rules Relaxed

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 1:22pm

The Trump administration is rolling back regulations on methane, saying that should be left to states. So Wyoming is stepping in with its own proposal, which even some oil and gas companies support.

Categories: Environment

Why Experts Have A Hard Time Predicting A Hurricane's Intensity

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 1:22pm

Hurricane forecasters still face the challenge of predicting a storm's intensity. NPR's Mary Louise Kelly talks with meteorologist Angela Fritz of The Washington Post's Capital Weather Gang about why.

Categories: Environment

We label fridges to show their environmental impact – why not food?

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 10:04am

Mandatory environmental labels would change how we produce and consume in three far-reaching ways.

If you buy a washing machine, a fridge or a television in Europe, it comes with a sticker. Thanks to a 1992 EU directive, all appliances must be labelled with their energy efficiency.

So why has our food system – which threatens 10,000 species with extinction, emits about 30% of greenhouse gases, and drives 80% of our nitrogen and phosphorus pollution – only ever had voluntary ecolabels?

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Categories: Environment

Huge reduction in meat-eating ‘essential’ to avoid climate breakdown

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 10:00am

Major study also finds huge changes to farming are needed to avoid destroying Earth’s ability to feed its population

Huge reductions in meat-eating are essential to avoid dangerous climate change, according to the most comprehensive analysis yet of the food system’s impact on the environment. In western countries, beef consumption needs to fall by 90% and be replaced by five times more beans and pulses.

The research also finds that enormous changes to farming are needed to avoid destroying the planet’s ability to feed the 10 billion people expected to be on the planet in a few decades.

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Categories: Environment

U.N. Report Says We Have About A Decade To Turn Around Climate Change Effects

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 7:06am

Are we ready to do what it takes to save the planet?

(Image credit: MIKE LEYRAL/AFP/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

UK 'will have to intervene in market to meet climate obligations'

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 6:39am

Top climate adviser says UN warnings will force the government to act in ways that will be controversial and politically fraught

The UK’s obligations in response to this week’s warnings from the UN over global warming will be controversial and politically fraught, taking the country into “uncharted territory” and testing the political consensus on climate change, the its top climate adviser has warned.

The government will have to regulate industry and intervene in the market in ways that will prove controversial in parliament, predicted Chris Stark, chief executive of the Committee on Climate Change (CCC). He is charged with advising ministers on how swift and how deep cuts in emissions should be and how they can be achieved, and his committee will start work on the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) advice shortly.

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Categories: Environment

Oysters On The Half Shell Are Actually Saving New York's Eroding Harbor

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 5:02am

More than 70 New York City restaurants are pouring their discarded shells into the Billion Oyster Project, through which students recycle and transform them into healthy reefs in once-toxic waters.

(Image credit: Courtesy of Agata Poniatowski)

Categories: Environment

What does climate change really cost society? This lab is trying to find out

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 3:00am

Studies by the Climate Impact Lab have found that higher temperatures increase suicide rates

One of the biggest hubs of real-time climate research is a lab hundreds of miles from the rising seas and melting ice caps. There are no test tubes or beakers. Instead young scientists and economists hunch over computers analyzing the newest data.

A group of them are currently reviewing a study that considers whether crime levels are connected to monsoon seasons. The findings are a tiny part of a big question: how much is climate change costing society, and who’s paying?

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Categories: Environment

Canada: Trudeau on back foot as frustration builds over PM's climate strategy

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 3:00am

Several provinces unhappy with PM’s national carbon tax, while green groups oppose government investment in fossil fuels

When Justin Trudeau swept into power in 2015, he pledged to make fighting climate change a top priority for his government.

Three years later, Canada’s prime minister is on the defensive, scrambling to both revive his party’s unravelling climate strategy as a growing number of provinces refuse to participate in national carbon tax – and to temper frustrations over his government’s continued investment in the fossil fuel industry.

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Categories: Environment

With $1 Million, Exxon Mobil Corp Helps Fund Carbon Tax Campaign

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 2:02am

Exxon Mobil pledges to support passage of a carbon tax. Analysts say the company would rather face a single, overarching tax than a patchwork of taxes and regulation to address climate change.

Categories: Environment

Trump Orders EPA To Lift Regulations On Ethanol

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 2:02am

President Trump is set to end ethanol regulations — to the praise of farmers and criticism of environmentalists. E15 is banned during summer months because of smog concerns.

Categories: Environment

University of Texas: eco-conscious campus and major fracking landlord

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 2:00am

While the Austin campus has a sustainability plan and promotes recycling, the university is also a major fracking landlord that leases millions of acres to oil and gas companies

The dusty oilfields of west Texas can feel a world away from the bustling heart of Austin, the state’s eco-conscious capital.

A common thread is the University of Texas: one of America’s biggest academic institutions and one of its largest landowners. University land managers control 2.1m acres in Texas, much of it leased to oil and gas companies who have installed 9,000 wells on its property.

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Categories: Environment

Hellfire: this is what our future looks like under climate change

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/10/10 - 12:00am

Forest fires and air that seems to combust: thanks to climate change, more parts of the world will soon be ablaze. California shows us what will happen when it does

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Categories: Environment

High chance of El Niño in Australia, worsening heat, bushfires and drought

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2018/10/09 - 7:48pm

‘This is not good news,’ Bureau of Meteorology says, warning drought conditions could get worse

Heatwaves and bushfires are predicted in southern Australia thanks to a 70% chance of El Niño weather conditions, the Bureau of Meteorology has warned. Although cyclones may ease up in the north by the end of the year, the outlook for drought-hit areas is not good, according to the bureau.

“Between the [above average] temperature and the lack of rainfall, this is not good news,” climatologist Robyn Duell said. “This outlook on the back of such little rainfall and dry conditions makes it such a worry for people.”

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Categories: Environment

Charges dropped against climate activists who tried to shut down pipelines

Guardian Environment News - Tue, 2018/10/09 - 6:54pm

Seattle residents had hoped to use ‘necessity defense’ in Minnesota court, arguing threat to planet was so great they had no choice

A Minnesota judge abruptly dismissed charges against three climate change activists during their trial on Tuesday, saying prosecutors had failed to prove that the protesters’ attempt to shut down two Enbridge Energy oil pipelines caused any damage.

The Clearwater county district judge Robert Tiffany threw the case out after prosecutors rested their case and before the protesters could use their defense: that the threat of climate change from using crude oil drilled from Canadian tar sands was so imminent that the activists’ actions were not only morally right, but necessary.

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Categories: Environment
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