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15/03/2009 07:00 PM
Maldives first to go carbon neutral
Guardian: The president of the Maldives, Mohamed Nasheed, will today unveil a plan to make his country carbon-neutral within a decade. The announcement comes only days after scientists issued stark new warnings that rising seas caused by climate change could engulf the Maldives and other low-lying nations this century. The president will formally announce the scheme - and make a plea for other countries to follow the Maldives' lead - this evening, following the world premiere of The Age of ... read more

14/03/2009 07:00 PM
Water scarcity 'now bigger threat than financial crisis'
Independent: Humanity is facing "water bankruptcy" as a result of a crisis even greater than the financial meltdown now destabilising the global economy, two authoritative new reports show. They add that it is already beginning to take effect, and there will be no way of bailing the earth out of water scarcity. The two reports -- one by the world's foremost international economic forum and the other by 24 United Nations agencies -- presage the opening tomorrow of the most important conference on ... read more

15/03/2009 07:00 PM
Oil spill ship's owners misled us: Australia
Agence France-Presse: The operators of a ship that spilled oil along the popular tourist beaches of northeast Australia misled authorities about the extent of the disaster, the state government said Sunday. Officials initially believed the Hong Kong-flagged "Pacific Adventurer" had lost 20-30,000 litres (5,300-7,900 gallons) of oil but it has since emerged that almost a quarter of a million litres spilled from the vessel. Queensland Premier Anna Bligh, whose government has been accused of reacting ... read more

15/03/2009 07:00 PM
Global forum seeks to avert water crisis
Reuters: Government ministers from 120 countries, scientists and campaigners meet in Istanbul this week to discuss how to avert a global water crisis and ease tensions between states fighting over rivers, lakes and glaciers. Nearly half of the world's people will be living in areas of acute water shortage by 2030, the United Nations warned last week, and an estimated 1 billion people remain without access to safe drinking water and sanitation. The world's population of 6.6 billion is ... read more

15/03/2009 07:00 PM
Children come with a high carbon cost
New Scientist: WHAT is your carbon legacy - not the emissions you are personally liable for, but those of your descendants? Ask Paul Murtaugh, a statistician at Oregon State University in Corvallis. If you have a child, he says, you and you partner are each responsible for half its emissions. If that child has kids, one-quarter of their emissions are down to you, and so on. How it adds up depends on population trends and emission changes in the future. Murtaugh used UN population projections, ... read more

14/03/2009 07:00 PM
Obama expected to kill key Bush EPA program
Philadelphia Inquirer: The Obama Administration intends to close an EPA program heavily promoted by the Bush Administration that rewards voluntary pollution controls by hundreds of corporations with reduced environmental inspections and less stringent regulation, according to EPA sources and internal emails. EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson is expected to sign a memo terminating the Performance Track program, possibly as early as this week, senior EPA officials said today. Performance Track offers ... read more

13/03/2009 07:00 PM
Obama erred on key cap-and-trade features, economists say
ClimateWire: President Obama's comments yesterday in support of climate change legislation included two errors on the fundamental design and history of the cap-and-trade approach that his new administration intends as the centerpiece of its global warming policy, according to several experts tracking the Capitol Hill debate. Appearing before CEOs at the Business Roundtable in Washington, Obama fielded a question about his campaign pledge to distribute allowances for emissions of greenhouse gases ... read more

13/03/2009 07:00 PM
Senate budget leaders warn against using spending bill to move climate plan
New York Times: The leaders of the Senate Budget Committee yesterday warned the Obama administration against pursuing the filibuster-proof budget reconciliation measure as a strategy for moving climate change legislation. Chairman Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) did not explicitly say that using reconciliation is not an option for moving cap-and-trade legislation. But he warned White House Office of Management and Budget Director Peter Orszag that such a path contained several pitfalls. One of those, ... read more

15/03/2009 07:00 PM
Legislature enters fray on carbon cleanup
Times West Virginian: Pressure is mounting nationwide for government to regulate greenhouse gases and reduce the amount carbon dioxide released by coal-fired power plants. But right now, West Virginia has no long-term strategy to do either through carbon dioxide sequestration. CO2 sequestration is the injection of carbon dioxide into underground rock. The idea is that injecting the gas will keep it out of the atmosphere. Coal-fired power plants release carbon dioxide and other pollution into the ... read more

15/03/2009 07:00 PM
Artificial trees and brightened clouds may help to cool us down
Times (UK): THE threat of devastating climate change is now so great that some scientists say it is time to investigate a Plan B - geo-engineering on a planetary scale. Such methods of altering the world's climate may become necessary, they say, unless emissions of greenhouse gases fall within five years. Ideas that were once the realm of science fiction - such as creating artificial trees to absorb carbon dioxide, or reflecting sunlight away from the Earth - are coming under serious ... read more

15/03/2009 07:00 PM
Australia: Turnbull takes tougher line
Age: MALCOLM Turnbull has hardened his stance against the Government's emissions trading scheme, vowing to oppose it in Parliament and arguing for a delay until at least 2012. Addressing the Liberal federal council meeting in Sydney, Mr Turnbull also moved to shore up his position as Opposition Leader following bad poll results and ongoing speculation about the career aspirations of former treasurer Peter Costello. In taking a tougher line, Mr Turnbull is picking up on Liberal and ... read more

15/03/2009 07:00 PM
Spring to emerge earlier than ever
Telegraph: Despite one of the coldest winters in recent memory there has already been evidence of wildlife responding up to three weeks in advance of normal. The new season does not officially begin until next week's vernal equinox, but already there have been unusually early sightings across the UK. Thousands of people are responsible for reporting their observations to Woodland Trust's Nature's Calendar on which the findings are based. Shaun Nixon, the survey's manager, said: ... read more

14/03/2009 07:00 PM
Al Gore: World will agree new climate deal
Telegraph: The Nobel peace prize winner believes the election of Barack Obama as US President and a growing awareness among business leaders of the environmental threat means there is now enough political momentum to tackle the problem. He said: "There is a very impressive consensus now emerging around the world that solutions to the economic crisis are also the solutions to the climate crisis." Al Gore: World cares more about Paris Hilton than saving the planet Mr Gore said he was ... read more

14/03/2009 07:00 PM
Australia: Marsupials at risk if temperatures rise
Sydney Morning Herald: POLAR bears and penguins are not the only animals at risk of climate change: much of Australia's fauna, including several species of kangaroos and wallabies, may be threatened, a report to be released today says. Climate Change And Species, by Tammie Matson, highlights just how vulnerable many animals are to even small changes in global temperatures and rainfall. Bengal tigers may have no habitat within 50 years; albatrosses are already losing chicks in their breeding grounds ... read more

15/03/2009 07:00 PM
Battle brewing over clean-energy delivery grids
San Francisco Chronicle: President Obama's vision of a clean energy future of wind farms and solar plants comes with a catch: It will require thousands of miles of new high-voltage power lines to move the energy from where it's most abundant, in the California desert or the plains of the Midwest, to power-hungry urban centers. Obama's allies in Congress, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., are pushing legislation that would give federal ... read more

12/03/2009 07:00 PM
Ethanol's African Landgrab
Mother Jones: massingir is an unremarkable town. The electricity supply here in rural Mozambique is erratic, clean water is hard to come by, and the hotels–well, calling them hotels is a little too polite. The town center is two ragged blocks of colorful bars, stores, and market stalls arranged along a reddish sandy furrow–the main street–with goods packaged in the smallest possible quantities to match the pinched cash flow of local buyers: individual quarts of fuel in old bottles, spoonfuls of soap ... read more

14/03/2009 07:00 PM
85% of the Amazon rainforest may be lost due to global warming
Mongabay: Warming climate could decimate up to 85 percent of the Amazon rainforest by 2150, according to a new computer model. The study, to be published in Nature Geoscience by researchers from the UK Met Office's Hadley Centre, found that even a 1-degree rise in global temperatures would cause the "irreversible" loss of large tracts of forest. A larger increase could be "devastating" -- 75 percent for a 3-°C-rise and 85 percent for a 4-°C-rise. "A temperature rise of anything over 1°C ... read more

15/03/2009 07:00 PM
Malaysia: 'Green' dams hasten rape of Borneo forests
Times (UK): THE island of Borneo, a fragile treasure house of rainforests, rare animals and plants, is under threat from plans for Chinese engineers to build 12 dams that will cut through virgin land and displace thousands of native Dayak people. The government of the Malaysian state of Sarawak says the dams are the first stage of a "corridor of renewable energy' that will create 1.5m jobs through industries powered by safe, clean hydro-electricity. Campaigners are furious but appear ... read more

15/03/2009 07:00 PM
Knock, knock: it's the council bin snoops
Times (UK): HOUSEHOLDERS are facing "re-education' home visits for producing too much rubbish after figures released under freedom of information laws revealed that councils have quietly microchipped 2m bins. The chips can be used to record the amount of rubbish families are throwing away. Those recycling too little will be sent warning leaflets, then visited by council officials who will advise on cutting waste. Details of the scheme resurrect the long-term prospect of a pay-as-you-throw ... read more

15/03/2009 07:00 PM
United Kingdom: Plan B: scientists get radical in bid to halt global warming 'catastrophe'
Times (UK): THE director of a Nasa space laboratory will this week lead thousands of climate change campaigners through Coventry in an extraordinary intervention in British politics. James Hansen plans to use Thursday's Climate Change Day of Action to put pressure on Gordon Brown to wake up to the threat of climate change - by halting the construction of new power stations and the expansion of airports, with schemes such as the third runway at Heathrow. The move by a leading American ... read more



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