Environment and Climate Change

Why is the World Bank backing coal power in Europe’s youngest country?

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The World Bank is poised to support a new coal plant that would modernise Kosovo’s creaking energy infrastructure, but also lock the young nation into a future powered by a regressive fossil fuel.. In the early days of December 2015, as the Paris climate talks veered off course and off schedule, the US secretary of state John Kerry left his team of negotiators and flew to Kosovo to voice his support for a proposed US-built, World Bank-sponsored coal power station… ... Read More »

Brexit will force EU countries ‘to make deeper, costlier carbon cuts’

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Bloc will have to draw up new plan with higher cuts for remaining 27 states in order to meet its carbon reduction target, which could cost billions of euros.. Brexit will force the European Union’s remaining 27 countries to spend billions of euros on cutting carbon emissions more deeply to compensate for the UK leaving, according to experts… Source: Brexit will force EU countries ‘to make deeper, costlier carbon cuts’ | Environment | The Guardian Read More »

Global warming is shifting Earth’s clouds, study shows

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Climate Central: The warming of the planet over the past few decades has shifted a key band of clouds poleward and increased the heights of clouds tops.. The reaction of clouds to a warming atmosphere has been one of the major sources of uncertainty in estimating exactly how much the world will heat up from the accumulation of greenhouse gases, as some changes would enhance warming, while others would counteract it… Source: Global warming is shifting Earth’s clouds, study shows ... Read More »

Estimated cost of Hinkley Point C nuclear plant rises to £37bn

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Critics point to volatility of scheme but energy department says price ‘will not affect bill payers’.. The total lifetime cost of the planned Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant could be as high as £37bn, according to an assessment published by the UK government. The figure was described as shocking by critics of the scheme, who said it showed just how volatile and uncertain the project had become, given that the same energy department’s estimate 12 months earlier had been ... Read More »

Politics for the planet: why nature and wildlife need their own seats at the UN

Whether we consider wild weather, unprecedented Arctic melting and global temperatures, or the Great Barrier Reef, the global environment is generating alarming news. Predictions of multi-metre sea level rises, the collapse of marine biodiversity and food chains, and global warming far beyond 2℃ are equally concerning. Is our system of global environmental law and governance adequate to this crisis? Our short answer is “no”, but what should be done? We believe new… Source: Politics for the planet: why nature and ... Read More »

Hole in ozone layer over Antarctica is shrinking

Scientists predict the hole could close permanently by the middle of the century.. The hole in the ozone layer over Antarctica appears to be healing, say scientists. Recovery of the hole has varied from year to year, partly because of the effects of volcanic eruptions… Source: Hole in ozone layer over Antarctica is shrinking Read More »

Brexit: Uncertain outlook for EU ‘fish pond’ as sea boundaries are redrawn

Oblivious to Brexit, fish know no boundaries – but fishermen will be held to account, conference told.. Lorna Siggins When Donegal fisherman Cara Rawdon puts to sea from Greencastle on the Inishowen peninsula he doesn’t have to steam too far before he is in British waters… Source: Brexit: Uncertain outlook for EU ‘fish pond’ as sea boundaries are redrawn Read More »

Universal support needed to tackle global warming, UN climate chief says

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Private sector needs to work in Africa, Asia and Latin America to drive down carbon emissions, Christiana Figueres to tell business and climate summit.. “Universal support” is needed from businesses across the world to tackle global warming, the United Nations climate chief says… Source: Universal support needed to tackle global warming, UN climate chief says | Environment | The Guardian Read More »

China to generate a quarter of electricity from wind power by 2030

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Report says figures could rise to nearly one-third with power sector reforms, making it the world wind energy leader by a large margin.. China is on track to generate more than a quarter of its electricity from wind power by 2030, and the figure could rise to nearly a third with power sector reforms, a new study has found… Source: China to generate a quarter of electricity from wind power by 2030 | Environment | The Guardian Read More »

Illegal Chinese fishing wreaking havoc with S. Korea’s fishery resources

Illegal Chinese fishing boats operating off the Korean Peninsula are causing serious damage to the Yellow Sea fishery resources and adversely endangering the livelihood of local fishermen, observers said Tuesday. The concerns come as the unauthorized Chinese fishing boats have been cited for depleting maritime resources in around waters near the Northern Limit Line (NLL) that separates the two Koreas. They have also been cited for intentionally damaging and stealing fishery-related equipment used by South Korean fishermen… Source: (News Focus) ... Read More »

Should Lawyers Be Ethically Obligated to Protect the Environment?

Contrary to many corny jokes, lawyers do follow a code of ethics. But there’s a glaring omission in the professions’ ethical outline: the environment. The American Bar Association’s Model Rules of Professional Conduct is a suggested blueprint for state bars, laying out a boilerplate for client-lawyer relationships, public service, communication and other matters of the professions. “It talks about other legal obligations for third parties, but never talks about the environment,” said Tom Lininger, a professor at the University of ... Read More »

Protecting those who defend the environment is a matter of human rights

On World Environment Day, we urge governments to address the growing threat to activists and indigenous people by bringing those who harm them to justice.. The enjoyment of a vast range of human rights, including rights to life, health, food, water, and housing, depend on a healthy and sustainable environment. Today, on World Environment Day, let us remember that those who work to protect the environment are not only environmentalists – they are human rights defenders. And they are increasingly ... Read More »

Ancient crayfish and worms may die out together

Research suggests that bizarre, tentacled worms which live attached to crayfish in the rivers of Australia are at risk of extinction – because the crayfish themselves are endangered. It would be an example of coextinction, where one organism dies out because it depends on another doomed species. Just a few millimetres long, the worms eat even tinier animals in the water or inside the crayfish gill chamber… Source: Ancient crayfish and worms may die out together – BBC News Read More »

Logging to begin in last remaining European primeval forest

Warsaw: It is the last remaining relic of an ancient forest that stretched for millennia across the lowlands of Europe and Russia, a shadowy, mossy woodland where bison and lynx roam beneath towering oak trees up to 600 years old. Conservationists believe the fate of the Bialowieza Forest, which straddles Poland and Belarus, is more threatened that at any time since the communist era due to a new Polish government plan for extensive logging in parts of the forest. The plan ... Read More »

Vietnam’s mass fish kill isn’t simply an environmental disaster

In the mass fish die-off on the country’s central coastal region, the Vietnamese government is faced with not only Vietnam’s worst ever environmental disaster but also widespread social unrest.. Millions of dead fish have washed up across some 200 km of the coast of Vietnam’s four central provinces since early last month. According to a figure given by an official on May 5, the disaster had killed at least 100 tons of fish. This… Source: Vietnam’s mass fish kill isn’t ... Read More »

‘Tantalisingly close’: is solar thermal energy ready to replace coal-fired power?

Australian projects are viable already – now the industry needs investors willing to take a risk on large-scale renewable energy.. Companies working on large-scale solar thermal projects in Australia say they are tantalisingly close to achieving the dream of building plants big enough to replace coal-fired energy in Australia… Source: ‘Tantalisingly close’: is solar thermal energy ready to replace coal-fired power? | Guardian Sustainable Business | The Guardian Read More »