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17/04/2009 08:00 PM
United Kingdom: London's Smoky Outskirts Probed for Moving CO2 to Sea
Bloomberg: National Grid Plc is investigating piping greenhouse gases released by power plants and refineries near London to undersea storage sites so they won't add to global warming. The manager of Britain's natural gas-delivery network found the Thames Estuary may be suitable for laying pipelines to move carbon-dioxide gas toward depleted offshore wells, Director of Network Operations Chris Train said in an interview. In the north, the Teesside industrial hub also is being ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Global Warming Might Mean Fewer Warm-weather Clouds
Environmental Leader: Meteorologists in the Netherlands are using a virtual cloud laboratory to study cloud behavior and the interrelationship with climate change. Researchers are investing theories that warmer temperatures may lead to fewer low-altitude 'fair-weather` clouds such as cumulus, which reflect sunlight away from the earth and thus have a cooling effect, according to Reuters. read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Polar 'bugs' may explain how life survived snowball Earth
New Scientist: A bacterial lost world trapped beneath Antarctic ice may help explain how life persisted during the "snowball Earth" period when almost all of the globe's surface was frozen over. Isolated for at least 1.5 million years from close relatives that live in the ocean, the Antarctic microbes live in a super-salty lake sealed with a 400-metre slab of ice, called Taylor Glacier. But each summer, the temperature warms enough for a trickle of extremely cold water to flow to the ... read more

14/04/2009 08:00 PM
Brazil: Amazon Soya Moratorium
Greenpeace: Greenpeace today welcomed a renewed commitment by Brazilian soya traders to boycott soya grown in newly deforested areas as part of an on-going soya moratorium(1). The announcement came in response to evidence presented by the GTS, the Brazilian coalition tackling Amazon deforestation for soya(2) that some farmers have been breaching the moratorium. The Brazilian soya traders' associations ABIOVE and ANEC make funding available to farmers to help them grow soya. At the conference they ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
Mega-droughts In Sub-Saharan Africa Normal For Region: Droughts Likely To Worsen With Climate Change
ScienceDaily: A new study of lake sediments in Ghana suggests that severe droughts lasting several decades, even centuries, were the norm in West Africa over the past 3,000 years. The earlier dry spells dwarfed the well-documented drought that plagued West Africa in the late-20th century, and as the planet warms, the study's authors believe the region's rainfall patterns will have an even greater impact. The team of geoscientists and climate scientists, led by Jonathan Overpeck of the ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
Newly Discovered Iron-breathing Species Have Lived In Cold Isolation For Millions Of Years
ScienceDaily: A reservoir of briny liquid buried deep beneath an Antarctic glacier supports hardy microbes that have lived in isolation for millions of years, researchers report April 17 in the journal Science. The discovery of life in a place where cold, darkness, and lack of oxygen would previously have led scientists to believe nothing could survive comes from a team led by researchers at Harvard University and Dartmouth College. Their work was funded by the National Science Foundation, NASA, ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
Asia may see more conflicts over water: report
Reuters: Asia may see more conflicts over scarce water resources in the coming years as climate change and population growth threaten access to the most basic natural resource, a report warned on Friday. Water problems in Asia are already severe, with one in five people, or 700 million, not having access to safe drinking water and half the region's population lacking access to basic sanitation, according to the report produced by the Asia Society, a New York-based think tank. Population ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
Barack Obama annouces high-speed rail plan for 10 busiest US routes
Guardian: Barack Obama today called on Americans to climb aboard with his ambitious vision of building high speed rail corridors along 10 of the country's busiest routes. In a high-profile announcement before leaving for a trip to Mexico yesterday, Obama said America could not let itself be shunted to the side while other countries invested in modern transportation systems. Obama said the funds would help ease traffic on roads and in airports that added up to $80 billion in lost ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
Europe could become strategic biofuel market for Russia
RIA Novosti: Europe may become a strategic market for biofuels for Russia, with an expected total volume of about 40 million tons annually, the CEO of the Biotechnology Corporation said Friday. Pyotr Kanygin said that after Russian timber has been processed, up to 36 million tons of waste could be used to produce about 7 million tons of biofuels. "We could transport liquid biofuels, in particular, butanol, via already existing pipelines designed, for example, to pump gasoline, and there ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
How do environmentalists spot a mole?
Guardian: It was a beautiful, crisp, sunny morning in April 2005. At 6.30am the environmental group was just minutes away from its target – a Land Rover factory in the Midlands. The meticulously planned action involved people bursting through the perimeter gate, past drowsy guards and occupying the factory line. Little did they know that almost 50 policemen were already there, drinking cups of tea and waiting for them. Fortunately for the activists, an advance guard spotted the helmets and the ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
Water fight
Time Magazine: The Songhua incident is a reminder that in Asia, a region of the world where water is often scarce and often polluted, managing that indispensable resource is vital. Asia is already the world's driest inhabited continent per capita, and as its population, urbanization and dirty industrialization grow -- and global warming dries out the region -- clean water will only become more precious. As a just-released report by the Asia Society argues, water will become the key to regional security in ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
New study warns damage to forests from climate change could cost the planet its major keeper of greenhouse gases
EurekAlert: The critical role of forests as massive "sinks" for absorbing greenhouse gases is "at risk of being lost entirely" to climate change-induced environmental stresses that threaten to damage and even decimate forests worldwide, according to a new report released today. The report will be formally presented at the next session of the United Nations Forum on Forests (UNFF) taking place 20 April-1 May 2009 at the UN Headquarters in New York City. "Adaptation of Forests and People to Climate ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
EU nations must plan for climate change's impact
Edie: Early planning will reduce climate change's potential impact on people's everyday lives, according to the European Commission. The latest research suggests climate change will strike harder and faster than previously predicted, with weather-related disasters becoming more common. Developing countries are most likely to be the hardest hit but Europe will not escape unscathed and as a result the commission is proposing that EU member countries start to think now about how to ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
Forests could flip from sink to source of CO2: study
Agence France-Presse: Forests that today soak up a quarter of carbon pollution spewed into the atmosphere could soon become a net source of CO2 if Earth's surface warms by another two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit), cautions a report to be presented Friday at the UN. Plants both absorb and exhale carbon dioxide, but healthy forests -- especially those in the tropics -- take up far more of the greenhouse gas than they give off. When they are damaged, get sick or die, that stored carbon is ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
Water crisis: A glaring problem
Merinews: "WATER, WATER everywhere and not a drop to drink....' Though the line is not written in the context of lack of drinking water in general, but the sense conveyed would become a reality if the depletion of fresh water supplies continues at the current pace. War experts believe that the next world war would not be for land, nor for oil, but for water. Water crisis is now a day's one of the most glaring problems that has been staring at us and is becoming more and more piercing day by day. ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Lawyers ask judge to split sweeping grazing suit
Associated Press: The federal government is asking a judge to break apart a sweeping lawsuit that accuses federal land mangers of putting grazing and energy interests ahead of preserving sage grouse across millions of acres of public land across the West. The lawsuit, filed last year in U.S. District Court here, challenges 16 separate land use plans developed by the Bureau of Land Management in recent years to manage about 25 million acres in Montana, Idaho, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming and northern ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
How global warming can shrink glaciers and alter frontiers
Economist: ONCE frontiers were changed by armies. Now the job is done by global warming. Italy and Switzerland are preparing to make--or rather to recognise--alterations to the border that runs through the Monte Rosa massif of the Alps. Despite what romantically minded locals may say, the name of the massif has nothing to with the pink blush its peaks acquire at sunset. It comes from a dialect word meaning glacier. The massif has nine glaciers. In several places the line between the two ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
Forests could become source of warming - report
Reuters: The world's forests are at risk of becoming a source of planet-warming emissions instead of soaking them up like a sponge unless greenhouse gases are controlled, scientists said. Deforestation emits 20 percent of the world's carbon dioxide when people cut and burn trees, but standing forests soak up 25 percent of the emissions. If the Earth heats up 2.5 degrees Celsius (4.5 degrees F) or more, evaporation from the additional heat would lead to severe droughts and heat waves ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
U.S. Chamber of Commerce ads target energy permitting, 'green tape'
Greenwire: You've heard of the NIMBYs, but their next-door neighbors, the BANANAs, are the new bane of the business community. Government "green" tape and lawsuits by environmentalists are blocking everything from new coal power plants to offshore wind farms, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce charges on its new "Project No Project" Web site. In the coming weeks, the nation's largest business group will rally its 3 million members to put pressure on Congress to streamline permitting for energy ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Global warming could turn forests from sink to source of carbon emissions
Mongabay: Rising temperatures could reverse the role forests play in mitigating climate change, turning them into net sources of greenhouse gases, reports a new assessment by the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO). The report, titled "Adaptation of Forests and People to Climate Change – A Global Assessment" and authored by 35 forestry scientists, examined the potential impacts of climate change across the world's major forest types as well as the capacity of forest ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Californians say "baby, baby, no more drilling"
Reuters: U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar confronted a host of sea creatures and polar bears on Thursday as costumed Californians told the new administration 'no' to offshore oil drilling. Salazar did not hint at the contents of President Barack Obama's energy policy, but said it would address climate change and include oil and gas. "We're not going to turn off the oil and gas requirements we have for this country overnight or even in a decade. We're going to see oil and gas ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
United States: Could space solar power beam its way to Earth by 2016?
Business Green: It might sound like the start of a 1950s B movie, but US energy giant PG&E has this week thrown its considerable weight behind a US startup that plans to begin transmitting usable power from orbiting solar satellites within the next seven years. The utility has requested approval from regulators in its home state of California for a power purchase deal that from 2016 would see PG&E agree to buy 200MW of renewable power over a 15-year period from space solar technology startup ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
United Kingdom: Government to boost demand for CDM Gold Standard offsets
Business Green: The government yesterday announced it was to tighten further the already controversial criteria it uses to buy carbon offset credits in a move designed to ensure it only uses the most robust offsets on the global market. Following Tony Blair's pledge in 2005 to ensure that all the government's air travel was offset, Whitehall departments have only bought carbon offset credits that adhere to its code of conduct and meet standards set out by the UN's Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) ... read more

14/04/2009 08:00 PM
Mexico: Fossil Corals Show Catastrophic Sea-Level Rise?
National Geographic: Fossil coral reefs at a Mexican theme park "confirm" that sea levels rose rapidly about 121,000 years ago, according to a controversial new study. Previous research on fossil reefs had shown that sea levels surged by 13 to 19 feet (4 to 6 meters) near the end of the last time period between ice ages, known as an interglacial period. But researchers have been unsure whether this sea-level rise happened quickly or gradually. By mapping the ages and locations of ancient corals at ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
Greenpeace activists urge Mexican, U.S. presidents to "save climate"
Xinhua: A group of activists from Greenpeace Mexico set on Wednesday a billboard addressed to Mexican President Felipe Calderon and U.S. President Barack Obama, urging them to take measures against the climate change. The billboard read "Save the climate, act now," with pictures of Calderon and Obama. It was placed in front of the Monument to the Revolution in Mexico City. Obama will arrive in the city on Thursday for a two-day visit in Mexico, before attending the 5th Summit of the ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Extremophiles discovered below Antarctic glacier are remnants of marine life
Mongabay: Living in isolation for millions of years, cut off from sunlight and oxygen, surviving by breathing iron beneath an Antarctic glacier--such are the conditions of newly-discovered microbes living under Taylor Glacier in Antarctica's desert-waste, the McMurdo Dry Valleys. "Among the big questions here are 'how does an ecosystem function below glaciers?', 'How are they able to persist below hundreds of meters of ice and live in permanently cold and dark conditions for extended periods of ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
West Africa faces 'megadroughts'
BBC: Severe droughts lasting centuries have happened often in West Africa's recent history, and another one is almost inevitable, researchers say. Analysis of sediments in a Ghanaian lake shows the last of these "megadroughts" ended 250 years ago. Writing in the journal Science, the researchers suggest man-made climate change may make the situation worse. But, they say, the droughts are going to happen again anyway, and societies should begin planning for them. "It's ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Africa trapped in mega-drought cycle
New Scientist: The infamous 1970s drought of the African Sahel region, which lasted several decades and killed more than 100,000 people, was actually a "minor" event, say researchers who have uncovered evidence that such droughts occur cyclically in the region and can be much more severe. Timothy Shanahan and colleagues at the University of Texas, Austin, analysed the first rainfall dataset that spans several millennia. "What's disconcerting about this record is that it suggests the most recent ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Climate change could worsen African "megadroughts"
Reuters: The recent decades-long drought that killed 100,000 people in Africa's Sahel may be a small foretaste of monstrous "megadroughts" that could grip the region as global climate change worsens, scientists reported on Thursday. Droughts, some lasting for centuries, are part of the normal pattern in sub-Saharan Africa. But the added stress of a warming world will make these dry periods more severe and more difficult for the people who live there, the scientists said. "Clearly, much ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
Australia: Garnaut's climate change agonising
Sydney Morning Herald: THE Government climate change adviser Ross Garnaut says judging whether it would be better to pass the emissions trading system as it stands or start again would be a line-ball call. In front of a Senate inquiry yesterday, Professor Garnaut urged senators to make significant changes to the system. He had previously voiced displeasure at the extent of largesse directed towards industries exposed to a carbon trading system, but yesterday went further and said he had been ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Canadian panel touts carbon pricing
Agence France-Presse: An environmental panel urged the Canadian government on Thursday to quickly implement a national carbon pricing policy if it is to meet its targets for cuts in greenhouse gas emissions. In a report, the National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy said the cost of carbon would have to top 100 Canadian dollars (83 US) per ton by 2020, and rise to a maximum of 200 dollars. Eventually, the government must tie in its trading system with other nations' cap and trade ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
Study Finds a Pattern of Severe Droughts in Africa
New York Times: For at least 3,000 years, a drumbeat of potent droughts, far longer and more severe than any experienced recently, have seared a belt of sub-Saharan Africa that is now home to tens of millions of the world's poorest people, climate researchers report in a new study. The last such drought, persisting more than three centuries, ended around 1750, the research team writes in the April 17 issue of the journal Science. The scientists warned that more such mega-droughts are ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Critics of offshore drilling pack Calif. hearing)
Associated Press: Environmentalists dressed as polar bears, sea turtles and jellyfish were among dozens of people who packed a public hearing Thursday to press Interior Secretary Ken Salazar not to open new areas of the West Coast to oil drilling. The public forum, the last of four such meetings around the country with Salazar, also drew state and federal lawmakers concerned about the effects any expansion of offshore drilling could have on the region's economy and natural beauty. "Our state is ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Slide Show: 10 Things You Should Know About Toyota's New Prius Hybrid
Scientific American: I say "hybrid car"; you say "Prius." Toyota's fuel-sipping sedan has become iconic for gasoline--electric hybrid technology, so much so that the model seems to cast a green aura over the world's largest car company. Owners can burn less gas when they drive, and so release fewer carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. During the past decade, Toyota has controlled around three quarters of the U.S. hybrid market, with worldwide sales of the Prius and luxury Lexus hybrids nearing two million ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
US, Mexico agree new partnership on climate change
Reuters: The United States and Mexico agreed on Thursday on a new partnership to fight climate change and promote environmentally-friendly forms of energy production, they said in a joint statement. U.S. President Barack Obama and Mexican President Felipe Calderon, meeting in Mexico City, agreed to broaden political and technical cooperation on those issues by forming a "US-Mexico Bilateral Framework on Clean Energy and Climate Change," the statement released by the White House ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Obama annouces high-speed rail plan for America
Guardian: Barack Obama today called on Americans to climb aboard with his ambitious vision of building high speed rail corridors along 10 of the country's busiest routes. In a high-profile announcement before leaving for a trip to Mexico today, Obama said America could not let itself be shunted to the side while other countries invested in modern transportation systems. Obama said the funds would help ease traffic on roads and in airports that added up to $80 billion in lost ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
United States: Wetlands restoration touted at panel discussion on climate change
Times-Picayune: Wetlands restoration was touted as a lucrative way to enter the burgeoning carbon credit market Wednesday evening at a panel discussion on climate change. Going beyond the direct environmental benefits and job-creation opportunities posed by multi-million dollar wetland restoration projects currently in the works, panelist and wetlands expert Sarah Mack said the immense carbon-saving value of restoring Louisiana's coastline can make the state a powerful player in the European and, ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
United Kingdom: Electric dream machines: Are they really the future of motoring?
Independent (UK): Motorists are to be given up to £5,000 to buy less polluting electric cars in a long-awaited official drive to a low-carbon future. Under the £250m incentive scheme, drivers will receive Government subsidies to buy a new generation of cars that can be charged up by normal power sockets in homes and garages. Ministers promised that the funding -- first announced as a concession for approving Heathrow's third runway in January -- would make green cars practicable for everyday ... read more

17/04/2009 08:00 PM
United Kingdom: Plan to increase popularity of electric cars stalls over subsidy snag
Times (UK): No electric car that is available now, or for at least the next two years, will qualify for government grants of up to £5,000 announced yesterday. Even the handful of concept cars currently being tested may be ineligible because ministers insist that they will only subsidise cars with "mass market appeal', in terms of range and speed. The RAC Foundation questioned the effectiveness of the grants and said there could be greater environmental benefits from encouraging more ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Countries funded to plan forest protection
SciDev.Net: Five developing countries have received US$18 million in funding to plan how to implement a proposed scheme to reward countries that protect forests and reduce deforestation. The Democratic Republic of Congo, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, Tanzania and Vietnam will share the funds, which will enable them to prepare national action plans to take part in the proposed Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD) mechanism -- likely to be agreed upon at climate talks ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
What's hot, green and Mexican?
Economist: ASK anyone who has read a newspaper in the past few months what is the greatest threat faced by Mexico, and the answer will inevitably be the drug gangs whose violence resulted in over 6,000 deaths last year and is the main reason Barack Obama came to visit this week. Yet even though Felipe Calderón, the country's president, has staked his job on his crackdown against the traffickers, he has a different answer to this question: global warming. "Climate change is the most important challenge ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Engineers set to convert carbon dioxide into solid rock
Guardian: Engineers in Iceland are set to convert carbon dioxide to solid rock as a way to tackle global warming. The experts want to exploit the country's volcanic origins to dispose of up to 30,000 tonnes of the greenhouse gas each year. They expect the gas to react with layers of volcanic rocks deep beneath the surface to form minerals that will lock the carbon pollution away for millions of years. "This is a well-known natural process," said Holmfridur Sigurdardottir, project ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
We must get past 'urgency denial' on climate change
Carrboro Citizen: Chances are, you're concerned about climate change. Unfortunately, it's probably much worse than you realize. Severe climate changes are occurring at an accelerating rate. Our planet is in crisis, according to the world's top scientists, and corrective measures that are proven and economically beneficial need to be implemented now. In North Carolina, that means ramping up energy efficiency via NC SAVE$ ENERGY and stopping construction of Duke Energy's Cliffside coal-fired power plant. ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Our Moral Obligation
Huffington Post: I am a doctor. A psychiatrist. Over the years I have heard many troubling stories about the human condition. I have worked with individuals who were "on the ledge" emotionally. I have worked with people who fantasize about killing people, and some who have. I have listened to people recount being tortured, abused. I have evaluated the psychological states of foreign leaders who threaten world security. I have heard the details about children who have died at the hands of people who were out ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Kenya signs its first REDD deal to conserve forests
Mongabay: Kenya has signed its first carbon deal to reduce emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD). Yesterday San Francisco-based Wildlife Works Carbon and Kenya Forest Service (KFS) announced a plan to protect the 80,000-acre Rukinga forest reserve in southeastern Kenya. The project will be funded by sales of carbon credits in the voluntary carbon market. The credits will be certified under the Voluntary Carbon Standard (VCS). Wildlife Works Carbon says the project will ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Australia's largest river nearly dry
Guardian: Australia's biggest river is running so low that Adelaide, the country's fifth-largest city, could run out of water in the next two years. The Murray river is part of a network of waterways that irrigates the south-eastern corner of Australia, but after six years of severe drought, the worst dry spell ever, its slow moving waters are now almost stagnant. Water levels in the Murray in the first three months of this year were the lowest on record and the government agency that ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Budget will be last chance to move to low-carbon economy, Tories warn
Guardian: Next week's budget will be the last chance for the government to kick-start the investment needed to meet the UK's targets for carbon emission cuts and to establish a sustainable low-carbon economy, the Conservatives claimed today . In a speech to launch their party's green budget, shadow chancellor George Osborne and shadow energy secretary Greg Clark called on the government to invest in 10 ideas that they said would help cut carbon emissions and create thousands of new "green" ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
Waving the REDD flag
SciDev.Net: Reduced emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD) can help conserve forests, combat climate change and eradicate poverty -- so it should be a top priority for upcoming climate negotiations, says Virgilio M. Viana. Forests have historically been excluded from development strategies but they are valuable assets to individuals, families, businesses and governments, argues Viana. He adds that policymakers should be guided by a simple message: forests are worth more standing than ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Chinese experts urge Australia for effective climate change response
domain-B: Chinese climate experts have urged rich countries to cut back on their wasteful and luxurious lifestyle, pointing out that Australia's carbon reduction targets were insufficient to reverse damaging climate change. The say that the lead for tackling climate change should come from developed countries. The experts were speaking at a Australia-China climate conference held in Canberra. They said that a global solution needed a per capita emissions approach. China leads the world ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Battle lines drawn over climate mitigation registry
SciDev.Net: The issue of whether developing countries should be obliged to sign up to a proposed registry of efforts to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions divided delegations at the latest climate change meeting. Some developing countries, such as Brazil and India, said that participating in any kind of mitigation registry should be voluntary for developing nations. But Japan and Norway -- among other developed countries -- said that national mitigation actions should be "measured, ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
US power company to tap solar energy in space
Guardian: A leading American power company is hoping to turn science fiction into reality by supporting a project to set up solar panels in outer space and beam the electricity generated back to Earth. Pacific Gas and Electric Company, which serves San Francisco and northern California, has agreed to buy electricity from a startup company claiming to have found a way to unlock the potential power supply in space. The firm, Solaren Corp, says it will launch solar panels into orbit and ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
United Kingdom: We must assess the full impact of biomass before it gets green light
Guardian: Despite all the media attention on wind, solar and even wave power as key sources of renewable energy, the UK's largest green energy provider is biomass – using wood, annual crops or waste materials as fuel for heat and electricity. It now generates over 2% of our total electricity, enough to power more than 2m homes. In addition, it produces about 1% of heat for our homes and industry. And it has the potential to deliver even more in the future, helping the UK to meet its target of ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Coral fossils suggest that sea level can rise rapidly
New York Times: Evidence from fossil coral reefs in Mexico underlines the potential for a sudden jump in sea levels because of global warming, scientists report in a new study. The study, being published Thursday in the journal Nature, suggests that a sudden rise of 6.5 feet to 10 feet occurred within a span of 50 to 100 years about 121,000 years ago, at the end of the last warm interval between ice ages. "The potential for sustained rapid ice loss and catastrophic sea-level rise in the near ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Study shows longer summers are killing coral
Time Magazine: The climatological finding isn't new. For years now, scientists around the world have recognized that global warming affects the seasons, triggering springtime events like the flowering of plants as much as six weeks earlier than normal, and pushing the arrival of fall ever further back in the calendar. Lengthening summers have translated not just to more days of warm temperatures but more drought and wildfires as well. (See pictures of the effects of climate change on Europe.) What's ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
The Warbler's long winter journey gets longer
Time Magazine: But that transcontinental migration is about to get even longer, thanks to global warming. In a new study in the Journal of Biogeography, scientists at Durham University and Cambridge University found that migration flights undertaken by warblers in Europe and Asia could be extended by as much as 250 miles by the end of the century. That's because as temperatures rise, the habitats of birds like the whitethroat, which breed in Europe, will need to shift farther north to more hospitable ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
"Catastrophic" sea-level rise possible, reef reveals
Bloomberg: Fossilized coral reefs formed the last time the Earth was warmer than today show sea levels could rise rapidly by the end of the century if global warming triggers a collapse of ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica. A "catastrophic" rise in the ocean of 13 feet to 19.6 feet is possible, said Paul Blanchon, a scientist at the National University of Marine Sciences in Cancun, Mexico, whose team studied the fossilized reefs. The death and re-emergence on higher elevation of reefs ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Australia: Climate scientists living in Pollyanna world, says senator
Sydney Morning Herald: National Party senator Ron Boswell repeatedly clashed with some of Australia's leading climate scientists yesterday, accusing them of living in "a Pollyanna world" and putting jobs in jeopardy by calling for deep cuts to the country's greenhouse gas emissions. "Jobs are on the line," Senator Boswell said. "You've got to be practical". But Professor David Karoly, who worked with the UN's peak scientific body on climate change, replied that dangerous climate change in Australia ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
UK charges up for electric car future
Guardian: The government will tomorrow finally put flesh on the bones of its long-awaited £250m electric car strategy. The transport secretary, Geoff Hoon, has announced incentives of up to £5,000 for consumers to buy electric cars and plans for cities to become testing grounds for how drivers will use and charge their vehicles. But the electric car has had numerous false dawns in the past. Motor manufacturers have had electric vehicles on their drawing boards since the 19th century - the first ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Catastrophic sea levels 'distinct possibility'
Agence France-Presse: A breakthrough study of fluctuations in sea levels the last time Earth was between ice ages, as it is now, shows that oceans rose some three meters in only decades due to collapsing ice sheets. The findings suggest that such an scenario -- which would redraw coastlines worldwide and unleash colossal human misery -- is "now a distinct possibility within the next 100 years," said lead researcher Paul Blanchon, a geoscientist at Mexico's National University. The study, published ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Australia: We're off target on climate, inquiry told
Canberra Times: Australia is clearing native vegetation at a rate that amounts to a $2.4 billion annual loss of stored carbon, a Senate climate change inquiry heard yesterday. ''We are still logging native vegetation at a rate of something like 60million tonnes of carbon a year,'' CSIRO climate scientist Michael Raupach told the inquiry. Global climate change had reached a critical point where ''it feeds on itself'' due to less carbon being absorbed by oceans and forests, Dr Raupach said. ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Scientists track effects of rapid climate change in Antarctica
Montreal Gazette: With the looming collapse of the 14,500-square-kilometre Wilkins Ice Shelf, attention is being focused on the Antarctic Peninsula -- the region experiencing the most rapid climate change in the world. Over the past 50 years, the average annual temperature there has risen a staggering 2.5 degrees C and the peninsula's many ice shelves and glaciers are calving more icebergs than ever. To get a better look at this threatened wilderness, 15 crew and 40 sail trainees recently joined ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Climate change may cause Australias potential weeds to move south by 1000 kms
Asian News International: A report by scientists at CSIROs Climate Adaptation Flagship has predicted that climate change will cause some of Australias potential weeds to move south by up to 1000 kilometers. Weeds cost Australia more than 4 billion dollars a year either in control or lost production and cause serious damage to the environment. According to CSIRO researcher, Dr John Scott, those cost estimates were only based on the damage caused by weeds known to be active in Australia. Out there, ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
United Kingdom: The genial prophet of climate doom
Irish Times: James Lovelock is perhaps the world`s leading thinker on environmental issues -- and his prognosis for the future of humanity is grim. In Ireland to speak at UCD this week, he tells RONAN McGREEVY why he thinks climate change is irreversible and why Ireland may become 'a lifeboat for humanity` IT IS DIFFICULT to have a sense of perspective on future events when the present seems so dire. These are hard times, but they may be viewed by future generations as a golden era of plenty, ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Tricky course lies ahead for Browner on the environment
Wall Street Journal: President Barack Obama's effort to remake federal energy and environmental policy will undergo some rigorous tests in the coming weeks -- and so will his environmental-policy czar, Carol Browner. When Mr. Obama picked Ms. Browner to be his top White House aide on climate and energy issues, his opponents and many business groups braced for the worst. Ms. Browner is "a proud liberal who has long advocated an environmentalist agenda that would drive up energy costs on families and put ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Singapore scientists say can turn CO2 into biofuel
Reuters: Scientists in Singapore say they have found a way to turn planet-warming carbon dioxide into clean-burning methanol using a process that uses less energy than previous attempts. The scientists at the state-backed Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology said on Thursday they used non-toxic organocatalysts to make ethanol, a biofuel that is also used as an industrial feedstock. In a statement, the institute said the team, led by Yugen Zhang, used N-heterocyclic carbenes ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Stopping climate change — and starvation
Miami Herald: Few foods are more associated with home and hearth than bread. For centuries farmers have labored to master the elements and produce the crops that literally would put bread - whether in the form of corn tortillas, wheat chapattis or a loaf of rye - on the table for their families. The struggle against nature's extremes has never been easy, but global warming seems poised to make things even harder for many farmers. Indeed, according to a new study, global warming-induced changes in ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
United Kingdom: £5,000 incentive to buy electric cars
Belfast Telegraph: Consumers could receive incentives of between £2,000 and £5,000 to buy an electric car from 2011, the Government announced today. Transport Secretary Geoff Hoon said the initiative -- part of the Government's low-carbon transport plan -- would mean an electric car was "a real option for motorists'. He announced the five-year initiative with Business Secretary Lord Mandelson. The Department for Transport is beginning discussions with the motor industry and financiers to ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Best practice biomass could cut emissions to almost zero
Business Green: The best biomass power plants have the potential to cut carbon emissions by up to 98 per cent compared to using coal, but poorly designed facilities could lead to a net increase in greenhouse gases. That is the conclusion of a major new report from the Environment Agency this week, which is calling on the government to introduce new regulations and incentives to ensure that only "sustainable biomass" that delivers deep carbon savings is used in new biomass power plants. The ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
United Kingdom: Plan to boost electric car sales
BBC: But the government hopes to target drivers of a new generation of all electric or plug-in petrol-electric cars, which are expected to go on sale in two years time. Speaking at a racing circuit in Dunfermline, Geoff Hoon said the plan was about "encouraging the idea that electric vehicles will become part of everyday life, that people will take them for granted and they will look and feel the same as any other car". Jay Nagley, an analyst at Spyder Automotive, said the ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Global carbon market to hit $669bn by 2013
Business Green: Investors are being urged to take advantage of the "exceptional opportunity" presented by the low price of carbon credits after a new report predicted the global carbon market is poised to enter a five year long period of rapid growth as the world's economy recovers. The report from US-based research firm SBI predicts that while the global carbon market will contract 29 per cent this year to just $84bn it will recover quickly over the next four years, growing at an average of 68 per ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
United Kingdom: Energy timebomb
Herald: How to ensure a reliable, long-term energy supply while simultaneously reducing carbon output is one of the most urgent political and technical challenges of our age. It is encapsulated in the clash over the role of nuclear power. The argument in its favour is that investment in new-generation nuclear now will provide the energy Britain needs in an acceptably low-carbon way. The argument against is that the attraction of apparently clean energy is balanced by the problem of the ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
New warning over 'catastrophic' sea level rise, scientists claim
Telegraph: The melting of the vast ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland caused water to pour into the world's oceans at an alarming rate at the end of the last period of global warming, the study shows. Analysis of fossilised coral reefs off the Gulf of Mexico found many died during this time -- known to climatologists as an "interglacial" -- and were replaced by new reefs on higher ground. This happened over a long-term ecological timescale and was caused by a rapid jump in sea level ... read more

14/04/2009 08:00 PM
Uganda: Develop strategy to manage climate
New Vision: Since 1992, international climate diplomacy has resolved to reduce green house gases which cause global warming. While these emissions fell by 5% between 1990 and 2006, they have risen by 2.3% in the past two years according to a recent report, UN framework convention on climate change. The main reason for the rise in emissons is the fast growth in emerging markets and depletion of primary forests mostly by the industrialised nations. In the struggle, the industrialised have ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
United Kingdom: Electric cars: the expert's view of government transport policy
Guardian: Today's strategy makes one thing abundantly clear: government ministers have identified transport as an important part of the drive towards a low-carbon economy and have developed some high aspirations in the role the UK is going to play. Their strategic approach should be applauded in what will be an international shift in the way we travel. The problem is that the 16-page document doesn't really tell you how they're going to do most of it. There is a distinct lack of detail. Missing ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Electric dreams, clunky reality
Guardian: The car was the 20th century's symbol of prosperity. When the Germans wanted a catch-all term for America's roaring 20s, they often plumped for Fordismus. America's most recent bubble even had its own dedicated auto, the sports utility vehicle. Even now, the surest sign that a developing country has started making money is the length of its traffic jams. The flip side is that when the good times end, the car industry hits the buffers. That was true in the 70s and it certainly holds now. ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
The world's cleanest countries
Forbes: The declining health of Mother Earth has drawn growing attention over the last two decades, with countries coming together to fight a range of environmental threats, from declining fishing stocks to global warming. Witness the Kyoto Protocol, the first widely adopted set of environmental protection guidelines, which emerged during the 1990s and took effect in 2005. Kyoto led to the development of the first large-scale emissions trading market, Europe's Greenhouse Gas Emission Trading ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Attention shoppers: beware of false eco-claims
CBC: More consumer products are claiming to be environmentally responsible, but nearly all of them make at least one claim that is unverifiable, according to a study released Wednesday. TerraChoice, an environmental marketing agency with offices in Ottawa and Philadelphia, says more than 98 per cent of the products it surveyed committed at least one of the "seven sins of greenwashing." "The good news is that the growing availability of green products shows that consumers are ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Sapping America's energy
Wall Street Journal: If Americans don't start paying attention to what Congress is up to, our nation's energy policy may seriously change for the worse. A bill styled the American Clean Energy and Security Act, sponsored by Democrats Henry Waxman of California and Edward Markey of Massachusetts, soon goes before the House. The enactment of laws to combat global warming is an established priority of the new administration and Congress, and their impact on the lives and opportunities of America's people would be ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Renewable Energy's Environmental Paradox
Washington Post: The SunZia transmission line that would link sun and wind power from central New Mexico with cities in Arizona is just the sort of energy project an environmentalist could love -- or hate. And it is just the sort of line the Interior Department has been tasked with promoting -- or guarding against. If built, the 460-mile line would carry about 3,000 megawatts of power, enough to avoid the need for a handful of coal-fired plants and to help utilities meet mandated targets for use of ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
Brazil's auto industry markets ethanol as green
Reuters: The big four auto makers in Brazil joined forces with the Sugar Cane Industry Association (Unica) on Wednesday in a campaign aimed at expanding the use of cane-based ethanol in flex-fuel vehicles. Local subsidiaries of U.S.-based General Motors Corp and Ford Motor Co, Italy's Fiat SpA and Germany's Volkswagen AG will together distribute 2 million free booklets explaining the benefits of ethanol for consumers who buy their flex-fuel cars in Brazil. "Brazil's interest in ethanol ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Third-World Stove Soot Is Target in Climate Fight
New York Times: "It's hard to believe that this is what's melting the glaciers," said Dr. Veerabhadran Ramanathan, one of the world's leading climate scientists, as he weaved through a warren of mud brick huts, each containing a mud cookstove pouring soot into the atmosphere. As women in ragged saris of a thousand hues bake bread and stew lentils in the early evening over fires fueled by twigs and dung, children cough from the dense smoke that fills their homes. Black grime coats the undersides of ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
United Kingdom: Governments fall out over nuclear
BBC: Battlelines have been drawn between the UK and Scottish governments over nuclear power. Prime Minister Gordon Brown and his ministers have gathered in Glasgow for the cabinet's first meeting in Scotland for almost 90 years. Energy secretary Ed Miliband told BBC Radio Scotland the Scottish Government's opposition to new nuclear power stations in Scotland was wrong. But First Minister Alex Salmond said renewable energy was the way forward. Mr Miliband said: "I ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Russia greenhouse gas emissions up 0.3 percent in 2007
Reuters: Russia's greenhouse gas emissions rose by a tiny 0.3 percent in 2007 to the highest since the 1990s economic downturn caused by the break-up of the Soviet Union, according to data submitted to the United Nations. Emissions edged up to 2.192 billion tons of carbon dioxide equivalent in 2007 from 2.185 billion in 2006, according to official figures filed to the U.N. Climate Change Secretariat in Bonn. The level was the highest since 1994. read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Up, up, and away
Guardian: They are the quintessential masters of the air, able to feed, sleep and even mate on the wing. Every year they travel on a round trip of more than 20,000km to and from southern Africa without once touching the ground. And they have long been the subject of myths and folklore, including the belief that their piercing screams are the cries of lost souls. They are the birds that signal the coming of summer to our towns and cities: swifts. But if the predictions of a recent report prove ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
A123 lands fresh battery funding, eyes expansion
Business Green: US-based A123 Systems has landed a further $169m (£113m) in funding to help bolster its nanotechnology based battery manufacturing capacity in the wake of recent supply deals with a number of high-profile electric car firms. The firm secured a $69m investment from General Electric (GE), and also announced $100m in tax credits from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. This is the seventh time that GE has invested in A123, and the former now owns a 10 per cent stake in ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Government to offer £5,000 incentives to jump start electric car market
Business Green: Motorists and businesses are to be offered grants of up to £5,000 when they buy electric cars or plug-in hybrids, under wide-reaching plans unveiled today by the government that will also result in the rollout of electric car charging networks and electric car demonstration cities. The £250m strategy is to be unveiled today by transport secretary Geoff Hoon and business secretary Lord Mandelson and is expected to centre on grants of between £2,000 and £5,000 being offered to consumers ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
United Kingdom: Exclusive: Kingspan builds up solar ambitions
Business Green: A new generation of construction materials could soon allow buildings to generate energy using their walls and roofs, according to one of the world's largest providers of building materials and insulation. Kingspan has revealed that its panels division, which specialises in highly insulated metal panels for buildings, is working on a variety of new products designed to integrate renewable energy technologies such as solar cells and heat pumps directly into building ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
EPA Reports Rise In US Greenhouse Emissions
redOrbit: Emissions of greenhouse gases in the United States rose 1.4 percent in 2007 compared with 2006, according to a report released Wednesday by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Total emissions of six main greenhouse gases in 2007 were equivalent to 7,150 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, the report said. These gases include methane, carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride. According to the report, U.S. ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
Ancient Corals May Provide Record of Rapid Sea Level Rise
Scientific American: With Greenland's glaciers melting and on the move while vast ice sheets in Antarctica continue to shatter, the proportion of water in the seas continues to grow. And with the climate at the poles expected to continue to warm rapidly in coming decades, many researchers are trying to determine how much and how quickly sea levels might rise. Now newly excavated reefs in Mexico may have provided an answer: high and fast. Geoscientist Paul Blanchon of the National Autonomous University of ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
The landscape of a nuclear Britain: but is it the best option?
Independent (UK): The shape of a future nuclear-powered Britain became apparent yesterday when the Government published a list of potential sites for new atomic power stations. The 11 locations listed in England and Wales, from Sellafield in Cumbria to Dungeness in Kent, are all sites of current or decommissioned nuclear stations, or very close to such. This means that in practice there is likely to be little opposition from local people, who are used to big nuclear facilities on their doorsteps and ... read more

16/04/2009 08:00 PM
Climate change research: Weather hampers Arctic mission - guardian.co.uk
Guardian: Extreme weather is hampering attempts by a team of three British explorers to examine the effects of climate change on Arctic sea ice around the north pole. The Catlin Arctic Survey mission, led by Pen Hadow, is travelling about 600 miles on foot to the pole, and set off on 2 March. Despite rigorous testing before the expedition, a pioneering radar system designed to establish ice thickness without drilling and an onboard sledge computer kit have both been disabled by brutally cold ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
Brazil could triple agricultural output without touching the Amazon rainforest
Mongabay: Brazil could triple its agricultural without the needing to clear additional rainforest in the Amazon Basin, Roberto Mangabeira Unger, Brazil's Minister of Strategic Affairs, told Bloomberg in an interview. "For every acre under cultivation in Brazil, there are more than four acres given over to low-intensity ranching and much of that has become degraded pasture land," Unger was quoted as saying. "If we could recover even a small part of that territory, we could double the area under ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
Will Biochar Save The Polar Bears?
New Matilda: With the recent dramatic collapse of the ice bridge to the Wilkins Ice Shelf in Antarctica, climate change is back in the headlines. But Malcolm Turnbull and Coalition environment spokesman Greg Hunt think they have an answer: biochar. Many of the world's top climate scientists, including James Hansen, agree with them. So what exactly is biochar? Will it work, and can it save us? Essentially, biochar is charcoal -- the burnt remains of organic material. The CSIRO has ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
Environmentalists Adopt New Weapon: Seed Balls
National Public Radio: Neighborhood organizations across the U.S. that want to improve the environment are using a surprising weapon: seed balls. It's a technique for planting in abandoned places and often inhospitable land that was developed in Japan by Masanobu Fukuoka, a pioneer in "natural farming." The technique has worked its way to Brooklyn, N.Y. In the Greenpoint neighborhood on a recent Sunday afternoon, a small group of activists walked the streets carrying paper bags filed with little ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
Time to act on carbon markets
BBC: Despite a volatile beginning, carbon markets promise to be a key player in the fight against climate change , says Professor Michael Grubb. However, he warns that governments must not "snatch defeat from the jaws of victory" by failing to take the necessary steps to ensure their longevity. Barack Obama wants one; Gordon Brown wants one; the planet desperately needs it, but still an effective carbon market remains stubbornly elusive. Prices in the EU's version, the Emissions ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
Climate change can boost sea level suddenly, fossil record shows
CBC: The last time the Earth grew warmer than it is today, melting ice caused the oceans to rise very suddenly, a new study of fossil corals has found. The evidence backs up predictions that such dramatic sea level changes could soon happen again. The rapid sea-level change in the study took place about 125,000 years ago at the end of the last ice age, said Paul Blanchon, one of the researchers who conducted the study published in Thursday's issue of Nature. "Sea level must have ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
Cutting Greenhouse Gas Emissions to Protect Clean Water
Greenwire: U.S. EPA is weighing a revision of standards aimed at preventing the acidification of marine waters. The effort marks the first time EPA has invoked the Clean Water Act to address ocean acidification, and comes in response to a 2007 petition from the Center for Biological Diversity. The center noted that EPA has failed to update the pH standard since 1976 and has ignored research published since then. Concerns about ocean acidification have risen lately, as research shows a ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
Changing Climate Could Lead To Devastating Loss Of Phosphorus From Soil
redOrbit: Crop growth, drinking water and recreational water sports could all be adversely affected if predicted changes in rainfall patterns over the coming years prove true, according to research published this month in Biology and Fertility of Soils. Scientists from Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)-funded North Wyke Research have found for the first time that the rate at which a dried soil is rewetted impacts on the amount of phosphorus lost from the soil into ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
Organizers call regional emissions plan a success
Associated Press: Organizers and participants in the nation's only working cap-and-trade program for carbon emissions called the fledgling attempt to reduce greenhouse gas emissions a success Wednesday. Jeanne Fox, the head of New Jersey's Board of Public Utilities, said she hopes the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative will soon fall victim to its own success. The original idea was to serve as a national model for reducing the greenhouse gas emissions many scientists blame for global warming, ... read more

15/04/2009 08:00 PM
Most green products make some false claims: report
Reuters: Just 2 percent of the growing number of self-proclaimed green products on store shelves make completely legitimate claims on their labels, a report by consulting firm TerraChoice Environmental Marketing said on Wednesday. The remainder commit "greenwashing" sins, that is they mislead consumers about the environmental benefits of a product or the practices of a company, said TerraChoice, which runs the Canadian government's eco-labeling program and counts companies as diverse as Canon ... read more



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