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Environment | The Guardian



Latest environmental news, opinion and analysis from the Guardian.



Published: Sat, 03 Dec 2016 20:14:22 GMT2016-12-03T20:14:22Z

Copyright: Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. 2016
 



Climate scientists condemn article claiming global temperatures are falling

Sat, 03 Dec 2016 14:48:52 GMT2016-12-03T14:48:52Z

A Republican-led panel promoted a misleading tabloid story alleging earth may not be warming, relying on data that leaves out important points of context

Climate scientists have denounced the House committee on science, space and technology after the Republican-held panel promoted a misleading story expressing skepticism that the earth is dangerously warming.

On Thursday afternoon, the committee tweeted a Breitbart article alleging: “Global Temperatures Plunge. Icy Silence from Climate Alarmists”. The story linked to a British tabloid, the Daily Mail, which claimed that global land temperatures were plummeting, and that humans were not responsible for years of steadily increasing heat.

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Trump supports Dakota pipeline – but claims it's not due to his investment in it

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 17:33:26 GMT2016-12-02T17:33:26Z

Transition team says that the president-elect’s endorsement of the controversial Dakota Access pipeline ‘has nothing to do with his personal investments’

Donald Trump has said he supports a controversial oil pipeline that runs next to a Native American reservation in North Dakota – a project that the president-elect is personally invested in.

Related: Dakota Access pipeline company and Donald Trump have close financial ties

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Quitting UN climate change body could be Trump's quickest exit from Paris deal

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 08:00:10 GMT2016-12-02T08:00:10Z

Lawyer on president-elect’s transition team says leaving UNFCCC is ‘most practical way’ way to quit agreement, a process that normally takes four years

The US should completely quit the United Nations forum to tackle climate change in order to quickly exit the Paris climate agreement, according to a conservative lawyer who is part of Donald Trump’s transition team.

Abandoning the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) would allow the US to back out of the international climate effort within a year, far sooner than the four-year period that would be required to ditch the Paris accord, which came into force in November. Such a move would probably prove a severe blow to global efforts to avoid dangerous warming.

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US businesses push against Trump's attempts to dismiss climate change

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 14:00:05 GMT2016-12-01T14:00:05Z

Environmentally friendly groups at Companies vs Climate Change said they will work to make sure Trump won’t undo all the progress the country has made

From his claim that global warming was a gigantic hoax masterminded by China to his promise to pull the United States out of the landmark Paris agreement, Donald Trump’s surprise election win was widely decried by those who feared that recent progress in tackling climate change was about to come undone.

Related: Donald Trump presidency a 'disaster for the planet', warn climate scientists

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Obama funds dirty energy projects around the world | The daily briefing

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 13:22:29 GMT2016-12-01T13:22:29Z

Communities feel effects of US-funded developments; abortion activists challenge state laws; senators seek declassification of files on Russia and election

Through the US Export-Import Bank, Barack Obama’s administration has spent nearly $34bn supporting 70 fossil fuel projects around the world, work by Columbia Journalism School and the Guardian has revealed. Guardian reporters have spent time at American-backed projects in India, South Africa and Australia to document the sickness, upheavals and environmental harm that come with huge dirty fuel developments. In India, for example, the reporters heard complaints about coal ash blowing into villages, contaminated water and respiratory and stomach problems. “While Obama can claim the US is the world’s leader on climate change – at least until Donald Trump enters the White House – it is also clear that it has become a major funder of fossil fuels that are having a serious impact upon people’s lives,” they write.

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Obama's dirty secret: the fossil fuel projects the US littered around the world

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 12:00:00 GMT2016-12-01T12:00:00Z

Through the Export-Import Bank, the Obama administration has spent nearly $34bn on dirty energy plants in countries from India to Australia to South Africa

Seemingly little connects a community in India plagued by toxic water, a looming air pollution crisis in South Africa and a new fracking boom that is pockmarking Australia. And yet there is a common thread: American taxpayer money.

Through the US Export-Import Bank, Barack Obama’s administration has spent nearly $34bn supporting 70 fossil fuel projects around the world, work by Columbia Journalism School’s Energy and Environment Reporting Project and the Guardian has revealed.

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Obama's complicated legacy on climate change - video

Wed, 30 Nov 2016 12:00:17 GMT2016-11-30T12:00:17Z

Barack Obama has been called the first ‘climate president’ for acknowledging the real threat of global warming. But work by Columbia University and the Guardian shows that Obama’s climate record has been badly tarnished by investments made in dirty fuels around the world

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How Obama's climate change legacy is weakened by US investment in dirty fuel

Wed, 30 Nov 2016 12:00:17 GMT2016-11-30T12:00:17Z

Exclusive: an agency inside the Obama administration poured billions into fossil fuel projects that will lead to global carbon emissions on a damaging scale

President Barack Obama has staked his legacy on the environment, positioning his administration as the most progressive on climate change in US history.

However, an obscure agency within his own administration has quietly spoiled his record by helping fund a steady outpouring of new overseas fossil fuel emissions – effectively erasing gains expected from his headline clean power plan or fuel efficiency standards.

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The Standing Rock protests are a symbolic moment | Neil Young and Daryl Hannah

Mon, 28 Nov 2016 18:59:39 GMT2016-11-28T18:59:39Z

America’s surprise election is like water on the garden of activism. We stand in solidarity with all those who seek to protect the planet and nurture hope

This past Thursday was Thanksgiving. A time when we remember a feast, the first Thanksgiving, on Plymouth plantation in the autumn of 1621. The tales of pilgrims from the Mayflower who celebrated the harvest, shared and broke bread with the first Americans, are still used as inspiration and shared with children, teaching them the beauty of gratitude.

But it is now widely understood this Thanksgiving story is a fictional history. It was invented to whitewash the vicious genocide wrought upon the native inhabitants of this magnificent continent. Not only did the Europeans try to eradicate native populations, but they made every effort to eviscerate their culture, their language and eliminate them from these coveted lands.

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Standing Rock: army engineer corps order closure of protest camp, tribe says

Sat, 26 Nov 2016 13:07:37 GMT2016-11-26T13:07:37Z

Army corps of engineers says the main encampment must be cleared in nine days because of the onset of winter weather

The US army corps of engineers has ordered the closure of the main encampment established by activists opposing the Dakota Access pipeline, according to a letter released by the Standing Rock Sioux tribe.

Citing federal regulations governing public lands, Colonel John W Henderson of the army corps of engineers wrote to the Standing Rock Sioux tribal chairman, Dave Archambault, that he was ordering the closure by 5 December.

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Obama administration rushes to protect public lands before Trump takes office

Thu, 24 Nov 2016 16:00:37 GMT2016-11-24T16:00:37Z

Environmental groups hope Utah, Nevada and Grand Canyon will be included in rapid conservation efforts as Trump plans to expand fossil fuel extraction

Barack Obama’s administration is rushing through conservation safeguards for large areas of public land ahead of Donald Trump’s arrival in the White House, presenting a conundrum for the new president’s goal of opening up more places for oil and gas drilling.

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What businesses want Trump to know about climate change

Wed, 23 Nov 2016 13:00:05 GMT2016-11-23T13:00:05Z

Nearly 400 companies and nonprofits signed a letter to express support for the Paris climate agreement. We asked a handful to tell us why

Many businesses that supply the goods and services we use every day understand that they have a role to play in keeping global warming in check. Their profits depend on it. The long term rise in global temperatures will change where and how we extract raw materials and produce the many things we take for granted, from the grapes crushed to make wine to the cotton spun to make the shirt you are wearing.

Nearly 400 companies and nonprofits signed a letter last week urging president-elect Donald Trump to stay in the Paris climate agreement and support policies that combat global warming. The list covers a wide range of industries and includes Ben & Jerry’s, Patagonia and Sierra Nevada Brewing. It also contains surprising signatories: companies that aren’t known to take part in environmental initiatives, such as Tiffany & Co, Monsanto and Staples.

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Trump to scrap Nasa climate research in crackdown on ‘politicized science’

Wed, 23 Nov 2016 05:00:55 GMT2016-11-23T05:00:55Z

Nasa’s Earth science division is set to be stripped of funding as the president-elect seeks to shift focus away from home in favor of deep space exploration

Donald Trump is poised to eliminate all climate change research conducted by Nasa as part of a crackdown on “politicized science”, his senior adviser on issues relating to the space agency has said.

Nasa’s Earth science division is set to be stripped of funding in favor of exploration of deep space, with the president-elect having set a goal during the campaign to explore the entire solar system by the end of the century.

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Paris climate deal: Trump says he now has an 'open mind' about accord

Tue, 22 Nov 2016 19:48:29 GMT2016-11-22T19:48:29Z

Asked by the New York Times whether he would pull the US out of the Paris climate accord, the president-elect wavered on his previously stated position

Donald Trump has said he has an “open mind” over US involvement in the Paris agreement to combat climate change, after previously pledging to withdraw from the effort.

Related: Donald Trump drops threat of criminal investigation into Hillary Clinton – live

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The Standing Rock protests are a taste of things to come | Kate Aronoff

Tue, 22 Nov 2016 16:19:59 GMT2016-11-22T16:19:59Z

The way opponents of the Dakota Access pipeline have been treated by police is likely to be replicated on a massive scale under Donald Trump

Horrific scenes have been coming out of North Dakota these last several days, where the battle is ongoing to stop the Dakota Access pipeline. On Sunday night, police turned tear gas and rubber bullets on hundreds of unarmed “water protectors”, as those taking on the pipeline prefer to be called. They deployed water cannons as well, in temperatures well below freezing. More than 160 people were injured, and many sent to the hospital. As a result of the standoff, a young woman could lose her arm.

For those with a passing knowledge of the kind of tactics faced by America’s civil rights movement, the above might sound like blast from our more brutal past. As Donald Trump prepares to enter the White House, it should also sound like our possible future.

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Dakota Access pipeline: 300 protesters injured after police use water cannons

Mon, 21 Nov 2016 22:07:40 GMT2016-11-21T22:07:40Z

Twenty-six people hospitalized from ‘mass casualty incident’ that included bone fractures and hypothermia shown in dramatic video footage of standoff

Twenty-six people were hospitalized and more than 300 injured after North Dakota law enforcement officers trained water cannons, teargas, and other “less-than-lethal” weapons on unarmed activists protesting against the Dakota Access pipeline in below-freezing weather on Sunday night, according to a group of medical professionals supporting the anti-pipeline movement.

The Standing Rock Medic & Healer Council said that injuries from the “mass casualty incident” included multiple bone fractures from projectiles fired by police, a man with internal bleeding from a rubber bullet injury, a man who suffered a grand mal seizure, and a woman who was struck in the face with a rubber bullet and whose vision was compromised.

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Police blast Standing Rock protesters with water cannon and rubber bullets – video

Mon, 21 Nov 2016 21:43:35 GMT2016-11-21T21:43:35Z

Morton County police use teargas, a water cannon and rubber bullets against demonstrators from Standing Rock in North Dakota on Sunday night. Protesters braved freezing conditions and percussion grenades as they resisted the controversial pipeline with chants of ‘water not oil’. The company working on the pipeline, Energy Transfer Partners, has almost completed the system, but lack the permission to drill under the river

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Frozen pair of fighting moose discovered in remote Alaska village

Sat, 19 Nov 2016 17:13:45 GMT2016-11-19T17:13:45Z

Middle school teacher photographs animals encased in ice, lying on their sides with antlers apparently locked, in ‘vision of how brutally harsh life can be’

Two moose were recently discovered frozen in battle and encased in ice near a remote village on Alaska’s unforgiving western coast.

Brad Webster, a middle school social studies and science teacher in Unalakleet, captured images of the huge animals poking through the ice as they lay on their sides with antlers apparently locked together.

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Those luxury Egyptian cotton sheets you own may not be luxurious – or Egyptian

Sat, 19 Nov 2016 14:00:10 GMT2016-11-19T14:00:10Z

Target and Walmart are pulling bedding off their shelves after a falsely labeled Egyptian cotton products controversy involving manufacturer Welspun India

Egyptian cotton, which can be spun into fine, long fiber to make sheets with a high thread count, is synonymous with luxury bedding. But in the last four months, it’s been at the center of a controversy that has caused many Americans to wonder whether the Egyptian cotton sheets they rely on for a good night’s sleep actually contain any cotton from Egypt.

Related: Why aren't more big brands designing clothes for people with disabilities?

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California drought: 36m trees dead since May, raising toll to more than 102m

Fri, 18 Nov 2016 23:27:41 GMT2016-11-18T23:27:41Z

Survey shows 36m trees have died since May, as record low snowpack and warm temperatures leave trees thirsty and prone to beetle infestation

The California drought has killed more than 102m trees in a die-off of forests that increases the risk of catastrophic wildfires and other threats to humans, officials said on Friday.

The latest aerial survey by the US Forest Service shows there are 36m more dead trees since May in the state and there has been a 100% increase since 2015.

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Obama puts Arctic Ocean off limits for drilling in last-ditch barrier to Trump

Fri, 18 Nov 2016 19:14:33 GMT2016-11-18T19:14:33Z

US Department of the Interior says ‘fragile and unique’ Arctic ecosystem at risk if drilling allowed, possibly by pro-fossil fuels Trump administration

Barack Obama’s administration has ruled out drilling for oil and gas in the pristine Arctic Ocean, throwing up a last-ditch barrier to the pro-fossil fuels agenda of incoming president Donald Trump.

The US Department of the Interior said that the “fragile and unique” Arctic ecosystem would face “significant risks” if drilling were allowed in the Chukchi or Beaufort Seas, which lie off Alaska. It added that the high costs of exploration, combined with a low oil price, would probably deter fossil fuel companies anyway.

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Can dry cleaning give you cancer? The hidden hazards of delicates

Fri, 18 Nov 2016 16:00:21 GMT2016-11-18T16:00:21Z

Despite a 2012 EPA report finding that dry cleaning is a toxic process in the US, many Americans have no idea the way they clean their clothes is carcinogenic

With the results of the most recent presidential election, Americans are faced with all sorts of uncertainty in regards to their health. But there are some consumer choices that individuals can make to protect against future illness: cutting down on sugar, for example; exercising daily; and, surprisingly, being careful about how you clean your delicates.

You may not know it, but most dry cleaning isn’t dry at all – and it isn’t clean. Instead of water, professional cleaning processes use a liquid solvent to dissolve stains on garments. This typically involves a chemical known as perc that, while highly effective at getting scuff marks out of clothing, is also a known health and environmental hazard.

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Huge deposit of untapped oil could be largest ever discovered in US

Thu, 17 Nov 2016 21:16:39 GMT2016-11-17T21:16:39Z

Estimated 20bn barrels of oil found in Texas’s Permian Basin, three times larger than the Bakken oilfields of North Dakota, could be worth as much as $900bn

A huge deposit of untapped oil, possibly the largest ever discovered in the US, has been identified by the US Geological Survey (USGS) in west Texas.

The USGS estimated that 20bn barrels of oil was contained within layers of shale in the Permian Basin, a vast geological formation that stretches across western Texas and an area of New Mexico. The discovery is three times larger than the Bakken oilfields of North Dakota and is worth around $900bn.

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Thousands of dead fish cover New York canal – video

Thu, 17 Nov 2016 19:28:54 GMT2016-11-17T19:28:54Z

Thousands of dead fish were seen on the surface of the Shinnecock Canal in Southampton, New York, on Monday, after becoming trapped inside overnight. Tom Jones, a marine adviser at Hampton Watercraft, shot drone footage of the bizarre occurrence. It is believed the fish were chased into the canal by larger predatory fish and then became trapped inside when the canal shut early Monday morning. The fish eventually dispersed back into the bay when the canal opened later on Monday

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New York canal covered in dead fish

Thu, 17 Nov 2016 19:03:01 GMT2016-11-17T19:03:01Z

Officials believe the bunker fish, trapped after Shinnecock canal closed, may have been chased there by predatory fish and died due to lack of dissolved oxygen

The surface of the Shinnecock canal in Southampton, New York, was glistening and silver on Monday. One local told CBS New York that at first glance, it seemed like the canal was covered in frost.

The actual cause was much more grim: the water was covered almost completely in dead fish.

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Ogoni king: Shell oil is killing my people

Sat, 03 Dec 2016 19:45:50 GMT2016-12-03T19:45:50Z

King Emere was in a London court last week, watching the case that – he hopes – will allow him to sue Shell in the UK for polluting his tribal land

His Royal Highness Emere Godwin Bebe Okpabi, the paramount ruler and hereditary king of the Ogale community in the oil-rich Niger delta, is ready to explode.

Related: Shell and Nigeria have failed on oil pollution clean-up, Amnesty says

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Five ways to take action on climate change

Sat, 03 Dec 2016 09:00:17 GMT2016-12-03T09:00:17Z

The world’s leaders have promised to take urgent action on climate change. But that was the easy part. Here’s what they need to do next

The Paris agreement has been ratified. Only one year after negotiating this historic treaty, it has come into force. This signals that the vast majority of governments around the world remain committed to fighting climate change.

Yet that was the easy part. Actually realising these commitments made at COP21 in Paris will require concerted, concrete action for many years to come. Though the vast majority of countries in the world have clear goals in the form of nationally determined contributions (NDCs), these are not action plans, nor are the NDCs strong enough to actually keep global average temperature from rising more than 2C.

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Adani coal mine: green groups fume over plan for $1b federal loan

Sat, 03 Dec 2016 03:21:00 GMT2016-12-03T03:21:00Z

A $2.2b rail link to the huge Carmichael project has gained conditional approval for commonwealth funding

The environmental movement is up in arms over a move towards federal funding of up to $1b for a railway that will serve Adani’s proposed Queensland coal mine.

A $2.2b rail link to Adani’s huge Carmichael mine in the untapped Galilee basin has gained conditional approval for a commonwealth loan, days before its billionaire promoter, Gautam Adani, is due to meet state and federal political leaders.

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New blow for Hinkley Point contractor EDF after French safety checks

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 19:37:51 GMT2016-12-02T19:37:51Z

Safety issues force many reactors offline with warnings of power cuts across France, higher energy prices and a rise in emissions

The company building the UK’s first new nuclear power station for decades is facing questions over the health of its fleet of French nuclear plants after an investigation which has left the country with the lowest level of nuclear power for 10 years and the prospect of power cuts during a cold snap.

Thirteen of Électricité de France’s (EDF) 58 atomic plants are offline, some due to planned maintenance, but most for safety checks ordered by the regulator over anomalies discovered in reactor parts.

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Joy as China shelves plans to dam 'angry river'

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 08:35:18 GMT2016-12-02T08:35:18Z

Environmentalists celebrate as Beijing appears to abandon plans to build giant hydroelectric dams on 1,750-mile Nujiang

Environmentalists in China are celebrating after controversial plans to build a series of giant hydroelectric dams on the country’s last free-flowing river were shelved.

Activists have spent more than a decade campaigning to protect the Nujiang, or “angry river”, from a cascade of dams, fearing they would displace tens of thousands of people and irreparably damage one of China’s most spectacular and bio-diverse regions.

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After 60 years, is nuclear fusion finally poised to deliver?

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 07:00:09 GMT2016-12-02T07:00:09Z

It’s been a long time coming, but the world’s top powers are now betting billions on the Iter collaboration to deliver clean, safe, limitless energy for the modern world

“We are standing on the ground that could change the future of energy,” says engineer Laurent Pattison, deep in the reactor pit of the world’s biggest nuclear fusion project.

Around him is a vast construction site, all aimed at creating temperatures of 150mC on this spot and finally bringing the power of the sun down to Earth. The €18bn (£14.3bn) Iter project, now rising fast from the ground under the bright blue skies of Provence, France, is the first capable of achieving a critical breakthrough: getting more energy out of the intense fusion reactions than is put in.

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Off-grid solar to help Myanmar bring electricity to all by 2030

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 06:00:08 GMT2016-12-02T06:00:08Z

In a country where only 16% of rural homes have power a government-led scheme is bringing electricity to thousands of villages

Four feet in length, of aggressive disposition, and deadly poisonous: you don’t want to stand on a Russell’s viper in the dark. Especially if there’s no antivenom for miles around. Yet that’s the daily predicament facing millions of villagers in Myanmar, where snakebites cause about 500 deaths every year.

In Yin Ma Chaung, a rural settlement about nine hours by car from Yangon, villagers can rest easier knowing there are doses of antivenom chilling securely in a new refrigerator in the village’s community centre, powered by solar.

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The government's report on the Great Barrier Reef is a 'dog ate my homework' moment | Larissa Waters

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 05:03:32 GMT2016-12-02T05:03:32Z

The federal and Queensland governments are risking the reef being put on Unesco’s in-danger list with their coal obsession and shoddy progress report

If you’ve ever visited the Great Barrier Reef, or are one of the 70,000 people whose job relies upon it, you know why it’s considered one of the seven natural wonders of the world.

Yet it faces more pressure than ever before, from global warming, water quality, industrialisation of the coastline, and ever more extreme weather.

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Great Australian Bight oil drilling plans too 'technical' for FoI release, says regulator

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 02:33:13 GMT2016-12-02T02:33:13Z

National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority censors documents sought by Greenpeace

Australia’s offshore oil regulator is censoring documents about BP’s plans to drill in the Great Australian Bight on the grounds that environmental campaigners could use the information to “oppose all drilling activities” there – and that the plans are too “technical” for the public to understand.

Nathaniel Pelle, a Greenpeace campaign who requested the documents under freedom of information laws, said the decision hindered democratic debate.

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Kinder Morgan pipeline: Canadians intensify huge opposition to expansion

Sat, 03 Dec 2016 11:00:20 GMT2016-12-03T11:00:20Z

Trudeau’s approval of project some find analogous to Standing Rock incited thousands of activists, politicians and First Nations members to increase action

Opponents of a contentious Canadian pipeline project are preparing for a lengthy, multifaceted battle that will see thousands take to the country’s streets, courts and legislatures to contest the government’s recent approval of the project.

Prime minister Justin Trudeau announced on Tuesday that the Liberal government had cleared the way for Kinder Morgan’s C$6.8bn Trans Mountain Expansion project. Designed to transport Alberta’s landlocked bitumen to international markets via Vancouver’s harbour, the project will expand an existing pipeline to nearly triple capacity on the artery to 890,000 barrels a day.

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Boris Johnson makes 'save African elephant' plea

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 14:21:15 GMT2016-12-02T14:21:15Z

Foreign secretary, who backs ban on ivory trade, breaks off London speech to make plea for ‘magnificent’ vulnerable animal

Boris Johnson has interrupted a sweeping speech on the UK’s geopolitical future to make a passionate plea to save the African elephant, saying they are on the brink of extinction as they “get turned into umbrella stands and billiard balls”.

In the midst of a speech at Chatham House to ambassadors and foreign policy advisers, the UK foreign secretary said he was “obsessed with the tragic fate of the African elephant”.

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Four of world's biggest cities to ban diesel cars from their centres

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 12:47:12 GMT2016-12-02T12:47:12Z

Paris, Madrid, Athens and Mexico City will ban the most polluting cars and vans by 2025 to tackle air pollution

Four of the world’s biggest cities are to ban diesel vehicles from their centres within the next decade, as a means of tackling air pollution, with campaigners urging other city leaders to follow suit.

The mayors of Paris, Madrid, Athens and Mexico City announced plans on Friday to take diesel cars and vans off their roads by 2025.

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Two-thirds of Australians think reef crisis is 'national emergency' – poll

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 19:00:15 GMT2016-12-01T19:00:15Z

Overwhelming majority of people agree the government should legislate to stop chemicals polluting the Great Barrier Reef

More than two-thirds of Australians think the condition of the Great Barrier Reef should be declared a “national emergency” and support much stronger measures to protect it than are now being considered.

On Thursday the government released its report on the reef to Unesco, which was a condition of the reef being excluded from the UN body’s “world heritage in-danger” list. The government reported slow progress on the key issue of water quality and the failure of a major plank in the plan – slowing tree clearing in Queensland.

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Fires and drought cook Tennessee - a state represented by climate deniers | John Abraham

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 11:00:14 GMT2016-12-02T11:00:14Z

Climate change intensified the extreme weather in Tennessee, but its legislators deny the science

With my new hope that deniers of climate change will take ownership of the consequences, I am sad to report that this week, terrible wildfires have swept through Tennessee, a southeastern state in the USA. This state is beset by a tremendous drought, as seen by a recent US Drought Monitor map. There currently are severe, extreme, and exceptional drought conditions covering a wide swath of southern states. The causes of drought are combinations of lowered precipitation and higher temperatures.

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Trump and the GOP may be trying to kneecap climate research | Dana Nuccitelli

Wed, 30 Nov 2016 11:00:16 GMT2016-11-30T11:00:16Z

While Trump claims to be open-minded on climate, there are ominous signs that Republicans will try to slash climate research

Last week, Donald Trump’s space policy advisor Bob Walker made headlines by suggesting that the incoming administration might slash Nasa’s climate and earth science research to focus the agency on deep space exploration. This caused great concern in the scientific community, because Nasa does some of the best climate research in the world, and its Earth science program does much more. Walker suggested the earth science research could be shifted to other agencies, but climate scientist Michael Mann explained what would result:

It’s difficult enough for us to build and maintain the platforms that are necessary for measuring how the oceans are changing, how the atmosphere is changing, with the infrastructure that we have when we total up the contributions from all of the agencies ... we [could] lose forever the possibility of the continuous records that we need so that we can monitor this planet.

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Let the people lighten energy load with citizen-owned schemes

Tue, 29 Nov 2016 12:49:18 GMT2016-11-29T12:49:18Z

Urgent climate action must be taken and communities are willing to participate in their own electricity production – if the incentives are right

The challenge of climate change is global and it demands action on an international scale, such as the Paris Agreement. But a large part of the solution will be local, involving all of us in the way energy is produced and consumed.

The potential for citizen involvement in electricity production is considerable. A recent study showed that by 2050 half of all Europeans could produce their own electricity either at home, as part of a cooperative, or in their small business. Counting generation from wind and solar power alone, these small actors could meet almost half of Europe’s total electricity needs.

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如何让被保护区困住的大象重拾自由?

Tue, 29 Nov 2016 07:54:22 GMT2016-11-29T07:54:22Z

封闭式野生大象保护区承受着生态系统失衡的风险,如何打破保护区壁垒?威尔·琼斯给出了他的答案。(翻译:翻译/chinadialogue)

Related: 《卫报》为何要用中文报道大象的生存危机?

我刚刚从肯尼亚东北省回来。有一天晚上我们在一个干燥的河堤上露营,只用了一个简单的蚊帐当遮盖。夜色之中,我好像感到一群庞然大物静悄悄地出现在了我附近,定睛一看,原来是一群大象。

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Scientists rate Canadian climate policies | James Byrne and Catherine Potvin

Mon, 28 Nov 2016 11:00:27 GMT2016-11-28T11:00:27Z

Canada has made significant progress in its climate policy, but has further yet to go

The Paris Agreement was ratified globally in November. This is unprecedented amongst international agreements for how quickly it has come into force. The Agreement allows each country to decide how it will tackle climate change, and requires as of 2020, regular reporting on progress. Countries of the world have officially embarked in a global race to implement ambitious climate policies that contribute to reducing green-house gas emissions at the planetary-scale.

This process is not unlike the Olympics games where countries get together to compare their strengths and performance. If Canada wants to be a medalist in 2020, domestic climate policies must rapidly be adopted to accelerate the low carbon transition. In this context, Sustainable Canada Dialogues (SCD) – a network of 60+ scholars from across Canada – produced Rating Canada’s Climate Policy; a progress report on Canada’s climate actions over the past year. We analysed climate decisions made in Ottawa in 2016 in relationship to the 10 policy orientations that we proposed previously in our position paper entitled Acting on Climate Change: Solutions from Canadian Scholars.

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Drive, baby, drive: Hammond's autumn statement is more grey than green

Wed, 23 Nov 2016 15:39:15 GMT2016-11-23T15:39:15Z

The money for new roads and freezing fuel tax overwhelms support for electric cars, further fuelling the nation’s air pollution crisis

Drive, baby, drive - that was the message from chancellor Philip Hammond’s autumn budget statement, with more money paving the way to new roads and a freeze on fuel tax.

The problem is the UK already has an air pollution crisis that causes tens of thousands of early deaths – more traffic will only make it worse. Furthermore, rising transport emissions are one of the biggest obstacles to the nation meeting its legal targets for cutting carbon emissions.

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The simple, cheap instruments measuring global warming in the oceans | John Abraham

Wed, 23 Nov 2016 11:00:02 GMT2016-11-23T11:00:02Z

They may be cheap and expendable, but XBTs provide crucial data about the oceans

Earth is warming due to the release of heat-trapping greenhouse gases. Scientists are working hard to measure how fast the planet is warming, how much warming has occurred over the past few decades, and how this is affecting coastal areas, ecosystems, and fisheries. By understanding these factors, scientists can better project future climate impacts.

A large component of Earth’s warming involves the oceans, which absorb excess heat. The difficulty of gathering measurements in the oceans is that they are vast, deep, and often hard to reach. It’s also costly. Think about it: if you wanted to take the ocean’s temperature, how would you do it?

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The new climate change story must be one of rapid transition

Wed, 23 Nov 2016 10:26:53 GMT2016-11-23T10:26:53Z

With a reality TV demagogue in power, it’s crucial that we find a story in which people can discern a better future

Climate change is like the type of film director who, having already thrown the audience into seemingly inescapable peril, keeps piling on the jeopardy. The carbon budget to stay below the Paris climate accord’s target of 1.5C of warming is all but used up, and staying below even its lower goal of 2C now requires elaborate leaps of faith.

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Justin Trudeau’s giant corporate giveaway | Martin Lukacs

Tue, 22 Nov 2016 19:46:49 GMT2016-11-22T19:46:49Z

A privatization spree in Canada could cost regular people billions, erode democracy and undermine the fight against climate change

While prime minister Justin Trudeau flogged our public assets last week, he had a soothing message: rest assured, we’ll be well-served by the private sector. Bankers and billionaires lined up to sound a note of confidence. “I think it’s unprecedented,” exclaimed Canada’s top business lobbyist John Manley. “A once-in-a-generation opportunity,” enthused Trudeau’s economic advisory council.

These corporate figures are rubbing their hands because Trudeau is about to put one of our great crises in their hands: the need for historic investment in the country’s infrastructure, for so long the domain of the state.

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How Sadiq Khan aims to become London's most cycle-friendly mayor

Tue, 22 Nov 2016 17:53:26 GMT2016-11-22T17:53:26Z

In response to concerns from the former cycling commissioner, the deputy mayor for transport insists plans are on track

Sadiq Khan is committed to being the most cycling-friendly mayor that the capital has ever had – and is already delivering real results. However, there have recently been a number of inaccurate reports about his plans and I’d like to take this opportunity to set the record straight.

Making cycling safer and easier will be a significantly higher priority for Sadiq than it was for the previous administration.

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Live Q&A: Elephants are disappearing, so how can we save them?

Tue, 22 Nov 2016 14:47:35 GMT2016-11-22T14:47:35Z

The survival of elephants depends on what humans do now. Join us on Tuesday 22 November from 1-2.30pm to discuss how to save this threatened species 2.47pm GMT A wonderful and wide-ranging discussion of an immensely complex and emotionally-charged issue. Some final thoughts. 2.39pm GMT An entirely self-indulgent question, I will admit, but that’s my prerogative! This excellent panel give us measured hope for the future.In many countries I'm afraid it will not possible. We often forget Central and West Africa where elephants are in many areas doomed. If we cannot stop the current elephant poaching crisis, your grandchildren will probably be able to see wild elephants only in a handful of African countries, in the Eastern and Southern Africa, tiny islands of elephants surrounded by oceans of people.Yes, but unless we all redouble our efforts to combat poaching, build community support for conservation, reduce HEC, reduce trafficking (including through market closures), and dramatically reduce demand for ivory, the number of places with significant numbers of wild elephants, functioning as they should, will be very much smaller than now. But there is real hope!I think so Karl, because high value tourism areas will be maintained. They might be private, however, like Ol Pejeta and Lewa in Kenya. Unfortunately, in getting to them you and your kids will drive through or fly over farms and livestock grazing lands because people have eradicated the wildlife.You know what the word in English is for pest animals with no value - vermin. Current policy is in effect making wildlife vermin from the perspective of rural African communities.Karl, I think that with increasing momentum to listen to the elephant specialists talking about the species, (not just local abundant populations in one or two countries), we can get ivory under control and poaching significantly lessened. And I strongly believe that if we don't want simply islands of elephants but connected, migrating herds, we have to plan this now and in the next 5-10 years while we have something to work with. This applies in Asia too, where the IUCN Asian elephant specialist group just met last week. For all of those people who have or are going to have grandchildren the question is back to you all, are you with us? We need you to make your desire known to politicians and help us fund the work until the governments and corporations step up their funding and stewardship for elephants and their habitat. Continue reading...[...]


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Is there a plan B for elephants? The next step in saving them is even harder

Sat, 19 Nov 2016 08:11:42 GMT2016-11-19T08:11:42Z

Ending global legal markets is a great plan A, but that alone won’t stop elephant poaching or stem the illegal consumption of ivory

It appears inevitable now that almost all legal domestic ivory markets will be closed. This is the plan A of a large consortium of animal rights and welfare organisations aimed at stopping elephant poaching – informed by the belief that legal trade provides cover for illegal trade and stimulates demand.

Do away with legal trade, say the ban proponents, and demand will fall. Any elephant ivory seen for sale will be illegal, resulting in the dual benefits of making it easy for law enforcement to take action and for consumers to avoid buying an illegal product. And increasingly this is a majority position. In September International Union for the Conservation of Nature adopted a motion recommending the closing of domestic ivory markets globally. A few weeks later in October a similar proposal was adopted at the 17th Conference of the Parties of Cities, the international convention that regulates wildlife trade.

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Wildlife smugglers using Facebook to sell ivory and rhino horn

Mon, 14 Nov 2016 11:27:29 GMT2016-11-14T11:27:29Z

An investigation reveals the social media site is acting as a shopfront for a multimillion dollar trade in animal parts, centred in a small village outside Hanoi

Wildlife traffickers from a small, sleepy village in Vietnam are using Facebook to offload large amounts of illegal ivory, rhino horn and tiger parts, an investigation has revealed.

The results of an 18-month sting by the Wildlife Justice Commission (WJC) – shared with the Guardian – will be presented at a public hearing on 14 and 15 November at the Peace Palace in the Hague. They will show how social media sites such as Facebook are allowing traders greater access to customers.

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The elephant who helped me through one of the darkest periods of my life

Mon, 31 Oct 2016 12:30:18 GMT2016-10-31T12:30:18Z

After years of battling psychological demons, Jake Dorothy took the radical decision to go and work in an elephant sanctuary

One of the most significant moments in my life came one afternoon about five months ago, when I was volunteering in an elephant sanctuary in Thailand. I was tidying the park as part of my duties when I came across a beautiful, solitary elephant with a badly deformed front leg. Concerned as to why she was alone and curious about her physical health, I asked a guide.

Kabu was 26 years old, like me. She had been rescued about a year before but sadly never settled with a herd. She had been used for the illegal logging trade since infancy, pulling huge weights up and down steep mountain ravines. During one of these tortuous journeys, a log came loose, rolled into her and badly broke her leg. Forced to continue working, her injury never healed. When Kabu was finally rescued she was weak and traumatised. When she arrived at the park she had tears rolling from her eyes – from relief, said the guide.

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We can save elephants. But can we save wild elephants?

Tue, 18 Oct 2016 06:00:31 GMT2016-10-18T06:00:31Z

Elephants will certainly survive. But it may only be in ‘fortress’ conservation parks. Is there any way to allow elephants to stay wild?

I have just returned from Kenya’s North Eastern Province where one night, camped out in a dry riverbed with just a mosquito net for cover, a herd of elephants emerged out of the dark – a great and almost silent mass of shapes.

They passed through our makeshift camp, looming over us, their tusks white against the night. I was close enough to hear them breathe, to hear the sound of their feet in the sand. Another minute and they were gone, leaving me awestruck, in the truest sense of the word.

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生态保护者谴责津巴布韦出口活大象的计划

Tue, 11 Oct 2016 22:34:24 GMT2016-10-11T22:34:24Z

尽管津巴布韦国家公园管理方予以否认,但专家相信该国正计划将数十只大象运往中国。(翻译:金艳/chinadialogue)

有人担心,津巴布韦正准备再次将数十只幼年大象送往中国野生动物园。

今年8月,津巴布韦国家公园及野生动植物管理局(ZimParks)开始从万基国家公园捕捉大象,并将它们关在乌特士比野生动物圈养设施内。

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Debate: Would a legal ivory trade save elephants or speed up the massacre?

Sat, 01 Oct 2016 09:13:36 GMT2016-10-01T09:13:36Z

Horns will lock over the future of the African elephant at Cites CoP17. We ask experts whether they believe the ban on the international ivory trade is working

Enrico Di Minin, research fellow in conservation science at the University of Helsinki, and Douglas MacMillan, professor of biodiversity economics at the Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology, University of Kent.

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Zimbabwe accused of preparing to ship dozens of young elephants to China

Thu, 29 Sep 2016 10:11:18 GMT2016-09-29T10:11:18Z

Conservationists say dozens of young elephants being captured by Zimbabwe’s government may be bound for China, rather than nearby national park

Concerns have been raised that Zimbabwe is again preparing to send dozens of young elephants to wildlife parks in China.

The government’s national park authority, ZimParks, began capturing elephants from Hwange national park in August and keeping them in pens at Umtshibi wildlife capture and relocation unit.

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South Africa: 'Saving endangered species is the responsibility of everyone'

Mon, 26 Sep 2016 15:39:39 GMT2016-09-26T15:39:39Z

As the 17th world wildlife conference opens, South Africa’s environment minister Dr Edna Molewa explains the country’s commitment to protecting wildlife

Over the next two weeks, South Africa will welcome an estimated 3,500 delegates to Cop17, the 17th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (Cites).

Related: Saving Africa's elephants: 'Can you imagine them no longer existing?'

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How lobbyists made breakfast 'the most important meal of the day'

Mon, 28 Nov 2016 22:05:25 GMT2016-11-28T22:05:25Z

We’ve tied all sorts of ills to a failure to sit down to a hearty breakfast. But research and history show that skipping our granola bowl does not, in fact, harm our health

Until very recently, common wisdom held that breakfast was the most important meal of the day. We’ve anecdotally tied all sorts of ills to a failure to sit down to a “complete breakfast.” But health research has proven that skipping that fried egg or bowl of cereal does not, in fact, lead to weight gain, health issues or underperformance.

Our reverence for breakfast is actually relatively recent. Before the late 19th century in the US, breakfast didn’t have any particular importance ascribed to it. But all that was changed by a small group of religious fanatics and lobbyists for cereal and bacon companies.

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$199 for a luxury cruise? 'Voluntourism' eco vacations struggle to catch on

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 20:06:46 GMT2016-12-01T20:06:46Z

One cruise liner is offering passengers weeklong cruises centered entirely around volunteer work. But are these vacations as sustainable as they seem?

Cruise lines are among the travel industry’s worst polluters, notorious for dumping insufficiently treated sewage into oceans or producing as much soot as 1m cars per day.

Now, cruise companies are seeking to offset that tainted image by offering “voluntourism” experiences. Passengers onboard Carnival Cruises’ Fathom line, for example, can expect to tan by the pool in the morning, build water filters in the Dominican Republic in the afternoon, then dance on the ship’s deck at night.

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Oysters are making a comeback in the polluted waters around New York City

Thu, 17 Nov 2016 19:40:42 GMT2016-11-17T19:40:42Z

A coalition of bivalve enthusiasts is trying to revive oyster farming in water that is beset by trash and raw sewage

The oysters in the Hudson River around the Statue of Liberty are some of the plumpest and fastest growing Crassostrea virginica in the whole of New York harbor. Fitting it should be that way, at least in contrast to the East River, between Manhattan and Brooklyn, where untreated effluent is allowed to flow out during storms in what New York authorities describe as a “rain event”.

Related: Lives in the balance: climate change and the Marshall Islands

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The beauty industry now has its own green 'seal of approval'

Mon, 30 Nov 2015 14:00:15 GMT2015-11-30T14:00:15Z

Environmental Working Group has launched EWG Verified, a label that will help consumers spot products that meet stringent ingredient and transparency requirements

It may soon be easier for shoppers to find beauty products without toxic chemicals. The Environmental Working Group nonprofit launched a new label this month called EWG Verified, which certifies personal care products as free from chemicals of concern.

The program is an extension of the group’s work with the Skin Deep database, which for more than a decade now has given tens of millions of visitors information on the chemical contents and relative safety of their favorite cosmetics and shampoos.

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Don’t cry over spilt milk, make loo roll out of it

Thu, 17 Nov 2016 13:18:55 GMT2016-11-17T13:18:55Z

German manufacturer Qmilk is making use of Germany’s two million tonnes of waste milk by turning some of it into toilet roll

A premium-priced toilet roll made from waste milk will be hitting Italian supermarket shelves amid the Christmas paraphernalia this winter.

Carezza di Latte – which translates as “milk caress” – is a collaboration between German fabric innovators Qmilk and Italian company Lucart, one of Europe’s largest manufacturers of paper and tissue products.

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Amid California’s historic drought, ancient sequoias show signs of stress

Sat, 05 Sep 2015 12:00:00 GMT2015-09-05T12:00:00Z

California’s giant trees are showing unprecedented die-back, and land managers who are already battling drought, warming and fire are racing to save them

Last September, US Geological Survey ecologist Nate Stephenson hiked into Sequoia National Park’s Giant Forest to look for dying seedlings. California was suffering through its third year of severe drought, and trees were dying in the park in greater numbers than usual. The roadside leading up to Giant Forest was pincushioned with trees faded brown – dead oaks, sugar pine, fir, incense cedar. But the forest’s namesake trees, which are among the world’s oldest and largest, were faring better. They’re tough – they have to be to live for thousands of years – and tend to grow in the wettest parts of the landscape.

Related: World view: free climbing a giant redwood, Eureka, northern California, US

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Apps and maps: 6 ways companies can cut their water footprints

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 12:17:32 GMT2016-09-22T12:17:32Z

Our expert panel highlights six ways to ensure companies put water at the heart of their operations

Food, clothing, electrical goods, energy – everything we consume has a hidden water footprint. So how can businesses cut water consumption and reduce the footprints of their products?

We brought together six experts to debate the question. Here’s what we learned.

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How a student's death highlighted our reliance on companies for health advice

Sun, 12 Jun 2016 07:00:17 GMT2016-06-12T07:00:17Z

The death of Wei Zei, a student seeking cancer cures online, raises questions about the responsibility of tech companies for the health data they provide

China’s equivalent of Google is under fire. Search engine Baidu has been criticised following the death of 21-year-old student Wei Zai, who used the search engine to research esoteric treatments for his cancer.

After Wei Zai’s death, the state-run People’s Daily attacked Baidu, claiming it was ranking search results in exchange for money. “There have been hospitals making profits at the cost of killing patients who were directed by false advertisements paid at a higher rank in search results,” the article claimed, adding, “profit considerations shall not be placed over social responsibility”.

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Topshop owner worth £4.3bn; store cleaners say wages don’t cover rent and food

Thu, 24 Mar 2016 12:45:27 GMT2016-03-24T12:45:27Z

As contracted cleaners demand fairer pay, fashion chain removes document supporting living wage from website after Guardian inquiry

For the past six and a half years, Susana has cleaned Topshop’s flagship store for a living. For the past hour, the Ecuadorian single mother of three has been pouring out stories of low pay, bullying and excessive workloads in breathless Spanish. The words flow effortlessly until she starts to talk about the seven months she had to take off work for stress and anxiety. At that point her pace slows and her voice breaks as she tries to hold back tears.

It happened in 2011, after she says her manager at Britannia Services Group – the company contracted to clean Topshop’s Oxford Street branch – kicked a bucket at her in the store. Speaking to the Guardian through a translator, she says: “That was the final straw. I was depressed and humiliated.” She was admitted to hospital for stress.

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Behind the label: can we trust certification to give us fairer products?

Thu, 10 Mar 2016 06:00:09 GMT2016-03-10T06:00:09Z

It began with Fairtrade. Almost 30 years later, with hundreds of different certifications is it time to question what they all do and who benefits?

In 1988, the first Fairtrade label, Max Havelaar, was applied to packs of Mexican coffee sold in Dutch supermarkets. At the time, using a product label to say something about standards in a supply chain was revolutionary, but today it is routine. The Ecolabel Index currently lists 463 certifications in 199 countries.

On the face of it, certifications on everything from fish to timber can be seen as progress, promising higher standards and transparency in the pursuit of sustainability. But what purpose are the certification labels actually serving? Can we assume that they are beneficial to producers? Do consumers understand what’s behind a certification label, and does it even matter if they do? These were some of the questions asked at a recent roundtable discussion hosted by the Guardian and supported by Mondelēz International.

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Greener pastures: the dairy farmers committed to sustainability

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 23:41:20 GMT2016-09-22T23:41:20Z

Biological farming, conservation planning and water recycling are part of a concerted push to make the milk industry more ‘carbon confident’

It was a soil bacteria course in New Zealand that convinced Reggie Davis to change his farming methods.

The fourth-generation Victorian dairy farmer had become increasingly concerned by the costs, chemicals and time involved in the use of nitrate fertilisers to maintain – what was considered to be – high-quality pasture for his dairy herd.

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Have we reached the tipping point for investing in renewable energy?

Sat, 13 Feb 2016 15:00:07 GMT2016-02-13T15:00:07Z

As oil prices bottom out and fossil fuels no longer offer strong returns, investment dollars are starting to move to renewable energy

Divestment – the decision to voluntarily reduce one’s fossil fuel investments – has been a hot button topic of discussion since 2011, when university students began calling on their institutions to remove fossil fuels from their portfolios. Divestment arguments have often focused on the morality of investments, but the economic value of divestment has recently become hard to ignore.

In January, portfolio planner Advisor Partners reported that, between 2014 and 2015, New York City’s biggest pension fund lost $135m because of its fossil fuel holdings. And, earlier this month, Market Forces, an activist group that works in environmental finance, reported that fossil fuel investments cost 15 of Australia’s top funds an estimated $5.6bn. On average, this cost each member of these funds $1,109.

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Can solar cookstoves help reduce greenhouse emissions in developing countries?

Fri, 30 Oct 2015 17:58:08 GMT2015-10-30T17:58:08Z

An Ohio startup is disrupting the clean cookstove industry with the introduction of a solar powered cookstove - but not everyone is convinced

Since Hillary Clinton announced the creation of a Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves in 2010, the public-private partnership has helped raise more than $400m for cleaner stoves and cooking fuels, enlisted more than 1,300 partners and, by its own accounting, helped drive about 28m cookstoves into the world’s poorest countries.

The vast majority of those cleaner cooking devices are powered by biomass – wood, charcoal, dung and agricultural waste. Millions more are powered by cleaner fuels like liquid propane gas (LPG), ethanol and electricity. At most, the alliance reported, 2% of the stoves distributed in 2013 relied on solar power, the cleanest fuel of all.

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The week in wildlife – in pictures

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 14:00:17 GMT2016-12-02T14:00:17Z

A baby slow loris, a ‘walking shark’ and caribou in Alaska are among this week’s pick of images from the natural world

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The $40m 'magic pipe': Princess Cruises given record fine for dumping oil at sea

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 05:08:13 GMT2016-12-02T05:08:13Z

Caribbean Princess discharged thousands of gallons of polluted bilge waste along British coast, while other ships used rigged sensors to hide contamination

Princess Cruise Lines will pay a US$40m penalty after pleading guilty to seven federal charges in an illegal ocean pollution case that involved one ship’s use of a so-called magic pipe to divert oily waste into the waters.

Miami US attorney Wifredo Ferrer told a news conference the penalty was the largest ever of its kind. A plea agreement filed in federal court also requires Carnival, the UK and US-listed parent company of the Princess line, to submit 78 cruise ships across its eight brands to a five-year environmental compliance programme overseen by a judge.

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Drinking too much water when ill can be harmful, finds study

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 23:30:00 GMT2016-12-01T23:30:00Z

Doctors warn excessive intake can pose risks for some patients and say medical advice needs to be more specific

The common advice to drink plenty of water when ill is based on scant evidence and can actively harm chances of recovery, doctors have warned.

Medics at King’s College hospital NHS foundation trust, in London, raised the alarm after they treated a patient with hyponatremia – abnormally low sodium – from drinking too much water to help with a recurring urinary tract infection.

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David Attenborough on climate change: 'The world will be transformed' – video

Tue, 29 Nov 2016 09:00:44 GMT2016-11-29T09:00:44Z

An extract from Liberatum’s documentary In this Climate, in which a range of cultural and environmental figures including Noam Chomsky, David Attenborough and Mark Ruffalo respond to the threat of climate change and to the deniers. The full-length film is scheduled for release before the World Economic Forum in January 2017

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Climate change will stir 'unimaginable' refugee crisis, says military

Thu, 01 Dec 2016 06:00:39 GMT2016-12-01T06:00:39Z

Unchecked global warming is greatest threat to 21st-century security where mass migration could be ‘new normal’, say senior military

Climate change is set to cause a refugee crisis of “unimaginable scale”, according to senior military figures, who warn that global warming is the greatest security threat of the 21st century and that mass migration will become the “new normal”.

The generals said the impacts of climate change were already factors in the conflicts driving a current crisis of migration into Europe, having been linked to the Arab Spring, the war in Syria and the Boko Haram terrorist insurgency.

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Giving up beef will reduce carbon footprint more than cars, says expert

Mon, 21 Jul 2014 21:00:05 GMT2014-07-21T21:00:05Z

Study shows red meat dwarfs others for environmental impact, using 28 times more land and 11 times water for pork or chicken

Beef’s environmental impact dwarfs that of other meat including chicken and pork, new research reveals, with one expert saying that eating less red meat would be a better way for people to cut carbon emissions than giving up their cars.

The heavy impact on the environment of meat production was known but the research shows a new scale and scope of damage, particularly for beef. The popular red meat requires 28 times more land to produce than pork or chicken, 11 times more water and results in five times more climate-warming emissions. When compared to staples like potatoes, wheat, and rice, the impact of beef per calorie is even more extreme, requiring 160 times more land and producing 11 times more greenhouse gases.

Continue reading...Aerial view of World s largest cattle feedlot 120 000 head Monfort beef CO Photograph: AlamyAerial view of World s largest cattle feedlot 120 000 head Monfort beef CO Photograph: Alamy


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Tasmanian tiger sightings: 'I represent 3,000 people who have been told they’re nuts'

Wed, 30 Nov 2016 21:37:29 GMT2016-11-30T21:37:29Z

The Thylacine Awareness Group is ‘dedicated to the research, recognition and conservation of our most elusive apex predator’ – declared extinct in 1986

Six years ago Neil Waters moved to Tasmania. There, he says, he had a “brief encounter” with a thylacine, the carnivorous marsupial known as the Tasmanian tiger, declared extinct in 1986.

Two years later, in January 2014, he was doing work on his house when a smaller animal walked up a dirt track leading out of a tin mine and past his bedroom window.

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Rockefeller family charity to withdraw all investments in fossil fuel companies

Wed, 23 Mar 2016 21:39:41 GMT2016-03-23T21:39:41Z

Started by John D Rockefeller – who made his fortune from oil – the fund singled out ExxonMobil, calling the world’s largest oil company ‘morally reprehensible’

A charitable fund of the Rockefeller family – who are sitting on a multibillion-dollar oil fortune – has said it will withdraw all its investments from fossil fuel companies.

The Rockefeller Family Fund, a charity set up in 1967 by descendants of John D Rockefeller, said on Wednesday that it would divest from all fossil fuel holdings “as quickly as possible”.

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No climate conspiracy: NOAA temperature adjustments bring data closer to pristine | Dana Nuccitelli

Mon, 08 Feb 2016 11:00:16 GMT2016-02-08T11:00:16Z

A new study finds that NOAA temperature adjustments are doing exactly what they’re supposed to

Congressman Lamar Smith (R-TX) has embarked upon a witch-hunt against climate scientists at NOAA, accusing them of conspiring to fudge global temperature data. However, a new study has found that the adjustments NOAA makes to the raw temperature data bring them closer to measurements from a reference network of pristinely-located temperature stations.

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How electric car drivers are being overcharged | Letters

Fri, 02 Dec 2016 18:41:40 GMT2016-12-02T18:41:40Z

As a relatively new owner of a Nissan Leaf, I support entirely the need for adequate provision of charge points (Letters, 29 November). The ecotricity charging points at motorway services are great, even if they are now not free. But you can now only pay using a mobile phone app – not much use for my wife whose phone is too old to run the app, and not much use for anyone if their phone is lost or broken. What is wrong with a swipe card, as offered by Charge your Car at other charging points? But the biggest absurdity, as employed by all charging points, is that you pay by charging session, not by the amount of electricity you use. In a petrol or diesel car in an area with few fuel stations, you will top up whenever you have the opportunity even if it means putting in only, say, a quarter of a tank. Electric car users may need to follow that routine, but will have to pay the same however much electricity they need.
Dr Robin Shipp
Bristol

• Join the debate – email guardian.letters@theguardian.com

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The week in wildlife - in pictures

Fri, 25 Nov 2016 14:01:34 GMT2016-11-25T14:01:34Z

A newborn Sitatunga calf and an orange-bellied parrot are among this week’s pick of images from the natural world

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The week in wildlife – in pictures

Fri, 18 Nov 2016 14:00:19 GMT2016-11-18T14:00:19Z

A pheasant that sports Donald Trump’s hairdo, a line of baboons and a ‘teddy bear’ bee and among this week’s pick of images from the natural world

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The week in wildlife – in pictures

Fri, 11 Nov 2016 14:00:21 GMT2016-11-11T14:00:21Z

Italy’s hedgehog hospital, starlings in flight and a comical fox are among this week’s pick of images from the natural world

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The week in wildlife – in pictures

Fri, 04 Nov 2016 14:00:19 GMT2016-11-04T14:00:19Z

A sleeping dormouse, baby marine iguana and a frilled dragon are among this week’s pick of images from the natural world

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The week in wildlife – in pictures

Fri, 28 Oct 2016 13:00:11 GMT2016-10-28T13:00:11Z

An elusive shoebill, a Yellowstone grizzly and spawning red snappers are among this week’s pick of images from the natural world

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The week in wildlife – in pictures

Fri, 21 Oct 2016 13:00:07 GMT2016-10-21T13:00:07Z

An inquisitive polar bear, blue-footed boobies and autumn colours are among this week’s pick of images from the natural world

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The week in wildlife – in pictures

Fri, 14 Oct 2016 13:00:36 GMT2016-10-14T13:00:36Z

Toxic lion fish, a rare brown panda and a green sea turtle are among this week’s pick of images from the natural world

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The week in wildlife – in pictures

Fri, 07 Oct 2016 13:00:14 GMT2016-10-07T13:00:14Z

A snacking water vole, two-towed sloths and humpback whales and among this week’s pick of images from the natural world

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The week in wildlife – in pictures

Fri, 30 Sep 2016 13:00:34 GMT2016-09-30T13:00:34Z

A pair of parakeets, a baby tamarin and a lost species of frog are among this week’s pick of images from the natural world

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