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China oil spill: warning over seafood contamination

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2018/01/18 - 3:07am

Scientists say consumers should be wary of buying any seafood that may have passed through the area until the toxic impact of the spill has been assessed

Consumers in Japan, China and South Korea should be wary of buying seafood until governments in the region have monitored and released details about the toxic impact of the Sanchi oil spill, scientists have warned.

The worst oil ship disaster in decades has so far produced two visible plumes covering almost 100 square kilometres on the surface of the East China Sea, but maritime disaster experts say this is just the tip of the iceberg and millions of fish are likely to have been contaminated by carcinogens.

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Categories: Environment

The National Parks And Ryan Zinke

NPR News - Environment - Thu, 2018/01/18 - 3:07am

NPR's Rachel Martin talks to journalist Elliott Woods, whose profile of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke just appeared in Outside magazine.

Categories: Environment

Europe's microwave ovens emit nearly as much CO2 as 7m cars

Guardian Environment News - Thu, 2018/01/18 - 2:06am

The biggest impact comes from electricity used to power the microwaves, but study also highlights rising environmental cost of our throwaway culture

Popping frozen peas into the microwave for a couple of minutes may seem utterly harmless, but Europe’s stock of these quick-cook ovens emit as much carbon as nearly 7m cars, a new study has found.

And the problem is growing: with costs falling and kitchen appliances becoming “status” items, owners are throwing away microwaves after an average of eight years, pushing rising sales.

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Categories: Environment

Stuart Wenham: scientists pay tribute to 'Einstein of solar world'

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 11:12pm

University of New South Wales colleagues pay tribute to pioneer with ‘Crocodile Dundee persona’ who died age 60 from malignant melanoma

Australia’s scientific community has paid tribute to Prof Stuart Wenham, a solar energy pioneer described as the “Einstein of the solar industry”, whose research increased the efficiency of solar cells a hundredfold.

Wenham passed away on 23 December, age 60, after suffering from malignant melanoma. He was the director of the Centre of Excellence for Advanced Photovoltaics and Photonics at the University of New South Wales.

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Categories: Environment

Queensland accused of breaking ‘no public funds for Adani’ promise

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 9:21pm

Activists target Aurizon after Palaszczuk refuses to rule out vetoing freight company’s application for Naif funding to build rail line

The former Queensland state-owned freight rail business Aurizon is the latest target of anti-Adani activists, after the Palaszczuk Labor government refused to rule out vetoing the company’s taxpayer-funded loan to build the Galilee basin rail line.

Opponents of the mine have accused the state government of attempting to break its promise of “no public funds for Adani’ through a “backdoor” by continuing to consider Aurizon’s application for federal government funds to build the central Queensland rail line.

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Categories: Environment

Tasmania launches roadkill campaign to reduce 500,000 native animal deaths

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 8:25pm

Drivers urged to stop throwing food out of windows, which attracts wildlife to the roadside

The motorists lobby in Tasmania has launched a joint campaign to reduce roadkill, saying that 500,000 native animals are killed on the state’s roads each year.

That equates to about one dead native animal per head of Tasmania’s population, giving the state one of the highest roadkill rates in the world.

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Categories: Environment

one more cold night...

The Field Lab - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 5:07pm
When you get used to over 300 sunny days per year, a few cold cloudy ones in a row is a real drag (but still nothing like months of freezing in upstate NY).  Looks like things are about to change...Chupa saw his shadow this afternoon.  38,42,28,0,B
Categories: Sustainable SW Blogs

U.K. Lawmakers Want To Battle Waste With A 'Latte Levy' On Disposable Cups

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 3:16pm

The British Parliament is considering a 34-cent tax on to-go cups to encourage diners to bring their own reusable containers. The goal is to replicate the success of Britain's tax on plastic bags.

(Image credit: Ben Pruchnie/Getty Images)

Categories: Environment

Night Became Day In Detroit As Meteor Lit Up Sky

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 2:16pm

A meteor streaked over southeast Michigan Tuesday night, creating a sonic boom so loud it shook houses. After seeing the spectacle in the night sky, thousands of people took to social media to share what they witnessed.

Categories: Environment

Nearly All Of The National Park System Advisory Board Has Resigned

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 2:16pm

NPR's Kelly McEvers speaks to former Alaska Gov. Tony Knowles, who has resigned from the National Park System Advisory Board. He, along with eight others, have said that Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has failed to meet with the board once since being confirmed last March.

Categories: Environment

Strange Weather Triggered Bacteria That Killed 200,000 Endangered Antelope

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 12:51pm

Over a three-week span in 2015, more than 200,000 saiga antelope suddenly died in Kazakhstan. The animals would be grazing normally, then dead in three hours. A new study points to heat and humidity.

(Image credit: Courtesy of the Joint saiga health monitoring team in Kazakhstan (Association for the Conservation of Biodiversity, Kazakhstan, Biosafety Institute, Gvardeskiy RK, Royal Veterinary College, London, UK))

Categories: Environment

25 staff laid off at agency key to May's plastic reduction pledge

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 10:07am

Wrap, the agency responsible for tackling waste, blames government cuts for the redundancies, that come just a week after the prime minister’s pledge

Just one week after Theresa May and Michael Gove promised to eradicate the scourge of plastic waste, government budget cuts have forced a key agency charged with tackling the problem to make more than a tenth of its staff redundant, a move campaigners said could sabotage progress.

About 25 people are losing their jobs at the Waste and Resources Action Programme (Wrap), the body’s chief executive confirmed on Wednesday.

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Categories: Environment

Queensland councils say they won't own Adani airport despite paying $34m

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 10:03am

Councils backtrack on previous statements and say they do not own the site or have any say in how facility is built

Two Queensland councils that together contributed $34m to an airport serving Adani’s coalmine have contradicted previous statements and now say they do not own the site or have any say in how the facility is built.

Townsville and Rockhampton councils announced in October that they would spend $18.5m and $15.5m respectively on an airport hundreds of kilometres away at the Carmichael coalmine as part of a funding deal with Adani.

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Categories: Environment

Cotton growers facing complete crop loss after alleged herbicide drift

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 10:00am

5,000 hectares of cotton thought to be affected by off-target spray drift, says Bernie Bierhoff of Walgett Cotton Growers’ Association

On Christmas Day farmers around Walgett in north-west New South Wales noticed their infant cotton plants had begun to wither. Leaves began to curl and die, killing some plants and stressing others.

Within days, it was clear Walgett was facing a serious incident that had affected nearly 6,000 hectares (60 sq km) of cotton farms reaching as far as Burren Junction, and Rowena.

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Categories: Environment

Is it possible to live without plastic? Readers' tips for tip-free living

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 7:30am

We asked you to recommend the best ways to reduce your plastic consumption and avoid excess waste. Here’s what some of you said

For 70 years, the world’s plastic usage has grown inexorably from humble beginnings to a position where humanity now produces roughly its own weight in plastic every year.

But is there a turning point in view? Guardian revelations about the scale of plastic waste and the threat it poses has finally prompted the authorities to take the issue seriously. Michael Gove is considering a deposit return scheme for plastic bottles, Sadiq Khan is looking at new water fountains to contain the plastic proliferation, and now Theresa May has set out her own plastic-free stall.

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Categories: Environment

Nearly 1m tonnes every year: supermarkets shamed for plastic packaging

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 7:29am

Exclusive: Guardian investigation unwraps truth about supermarket plastics after big brands refuse to divulge packaging secrets

Britain’s leading supermarkets create more than 800,000 tonnes of plastic packaging waste every year, according to an investigation by the Guardian which reveals how top chains keep details of their plastic footprint secret.

As concern over the scale of unnecessary plastic waste grows, the Guardian asked Britain’s eight leading supermarkets to explain how much plastic packaging they sell to consumers and whether they would commit to a plastic-free aisle in their stores.

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Categories: Environment

EDF could build second nuclear plant 'for 20% less than Hinkley Point'

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 4:30am

Company claims a plant at Sizewell in Suffolk would be £4bn cheaper than £20bn project

EDF Energy has claimed it could build a second new nuclear power station in Britain that would be 20% cheaper than the £20bn Hinkley Point C project under construction in Somerset.

The French state-owned company said a new plant at Sizewell on the Suffolk coast would be cheaper because of replication in construction techniques, existing grid connections and the exploration of new finance models.

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Categories: Environment

Scott Pruitt insincerely asked what's Earth's ideal temperature. Scientists answer | Dana Nuccitelli

Guardian Environment News - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 4:00am

In short, from a practical standpoint, as little additional warming as possible

In an interview with Reuters last week, Trump’s EPA administrator Scott Pruitt said,

The climate is changing. That’s not the debate. The debate is how do we know what the ideal surface temperature is in 2100?

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Categories: Environment

Majority Of National Park Service Board Resigns, Citing Administration Indifference

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 3:42am

The chairman of the board, former Alaska Gov. Tony Knowles, said in a letter that the Department of the Interior showed no interest in engaging with board members.

(Image credit: Andrew Harnik/AP)

Categories: Environment

Like Florida, Maryland Wants To Be Exempt From Offshore Drilling

NPR News - Environment - Wed, 2018/01/17 - 3:03am

Now that the Trump administration has excluded Florida from its offshore drilling proposal, other places want the same. They're making their case as the public comment period gets underway.

Categories: Environment
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