News Analysis

Tensions on the bridge at Standing Rock. Photo: Colin Samson, Author provided.

Civil liberties of indigenous people illegally suppressed at Standing Rock
9th December 2016

The US is a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, write Colin Samson & Øyvind Ravna. Both require free, prior and informed consent for any intrusions on indigenous lands and stipulate that indigenous peoples shall own and control their traditional lands. The US is violating both at Standing Rock.

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EDF's Cruas nuclear complex in  Rhône-Alpes, France, where two reactors have been out of action this autumn due to safety concerns. Photo: jan buchholtz via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

French taxpayers face huge nuclear bill as EDF financial crisis deepens
8th December 2016

Nuclear giant EDF could be heading towards bankruptcy, writes Paul Brown, as it faces a perfect storm of under-estimated costs for decommissioning, waste disposal and Hinkley C. Meanwhile income from power sales is lagging behind costs, and 17 of its reactors are off-line for safety tests. Yet French and UK governments are turning a blind eye to the looming financial crisis.

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The Big Shift: Why the banks need to stop investing OUR money in fossil fuels
7th December, 2016

The world's poorest and most vulnerable countries are doing their bit to promote the expansion of renewable energy. The least we can do in the developed world is to ensure the money in our bank account helps rather than hinders their efforts, writes JOE WARE

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Bovine TB is above all about the cows themselves, and on-farm biosecurity (or the lack of it). Cattle in a farmyard in Pancross, Wales. Photo: Ben Salter via Flickr (CC BY).

Badger cull free TB eradication in Wales and Northern Ireland? The science demands it!
6th December 2016

Al available science indicates that badgers have little if anything to do with bovine TB in cattle, writes Lesley Docksey. This is reflected in Wales's consultation on its 'refreshed TB Eradication Programme'. We must hope that Northern Ireland's bTB Eradication Strategy will be equally science based - and ready to campaign hard if it relies on cruel, ineffective and expensive badger culls.

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Post Brexit, expect a more assertive use of UK military assets to promote UK trade and financial interests. Nuclear missile equipped HMS Vanguard 'vents off' as she leaves HMNB Clyde in Scotland. Photo: Defence Images via Flickr (CC BY-SA).

Post-Brexit dreams of empire: arms, free trade and corporate conquest
5th December 2016

It's now clear what place government ministers and senior officials want for the UK in a post-Brexit world, writes Mark Curtis - and it's not pretty! A new era of corporate 'free trade' colonialism looms, spearheaded by aid spending, with ramped-up arms exports to the world's most corrupt and repressive regimes, all backed up by military force to project the Britain's global financial interests.

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Green Living

Could you live in a glass dome or box? The idea is catching on.

Nature House...complete with Grow Your Own Figs... anyone?
7th December 2016

The idea has yet to catch on in the UK but in Scandinavia, where the very first 'nature house' was built in the 1970s, the idea of surrounding your existing home with what is essentially a 'greenhouse' to create a living home is one that is catching on. PAUL MILES explores the eco benefits

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Cold Winter, Cosy Home
30th November, 2016

Mukti Mitchell, period home insulation expert, who last week won the 2016 ‘Devon Environmental Champion' award for his work insulating the heritage village of Clovelly, says now is the time to make your old home cosy for winter

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A portrait of Luc taken in the Rheinthal (Switzerland) in May 2007.

Heaven's eyes: Luc Hoffmann, unsung hero of nature conservation
23rd November 2016

Born into the wealthy family that founded the Roche pharmaceutical and chemical giant, Luc Hoffman turned his back on the comforts of wealth at an early age, writes James Breiding, and dedicated his life, and his money, to conservation. We all owe a huge debt of gratitude to this man of few words, encyclopedic knowledge, decisive action and unswerving commitment.

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Campaigning

Tina Rothery of The Nanas on an anti-fracking protest. Photo: The Nanas.

Cuadrilla - drop your £55,000 claim against Lancashire fracking 'Nana'!
8th December 2016

A Lancashire grandmother is to appear in a Preston court tomorrow to defend a £55,000 claim pressed by fracking company Cuadrilla and its CEO Francis Egan for the costs of an eviction that never even took place, writes Oliver Tickell. Now a campaign calling on Cuadrilla to drop its unjust and oppressive legal action is gaining momentum - and its Egan who's on the defensive.

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No place for dumping radioactive waste: mud flats near Maldon, Essex on the Blackwater Estuary. Photo: Mark Seton via Flickr (CC BY-NC).

No to Bradwell's 'secret' radioactive discharges to the sea
2nd December 2016

Magnox has applied to dissolve spent nuclear fuel canisters and release the liquid into the sea near Bradwell nuclear power station in Essex, writes Chris Busby. This will wash radioactivity onto mudflats in a populated area already suffering from excess cancers, however the publicly available documents ignore this key fact. We must make sure this dangerous application is refused.

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A recent demonstration in the British Museum to denounce BP's sponsorship. Photo: Kristian Buus / Art Not Oil.

In the age of Trump, Big Art must cut off Big Oil!
29th November 2016

With Trump denying climate change and threatening to reject the Paris Agreement, it's more important than ever for society to hold a firm ethical line, writes Chris Garrard. The last thing we need is our most revered museums and galleries muddying the water by courting the sponsorship of leading climate criminals.

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Interviews

The Arts Interview - The 'real' Lesley Hilling
28th November, 2016

Lesley Hilling is a core member of Human Nature - a group of 30 like-minded artists aiming to change the way people think and act about the natural environment through their work. GARY COOK visits her London home and studio to learn more

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Caleb Behn. Photo: Caleb Behn / Fractured Land.

Caleb Behn: 'After oil & gas, no amount of money can restore your fractured land'
24th November 2016

The jobs and quick money that fracking can generate may seem initially attractive, indigenous Canadian activist Caleb Behn told Jen Stout on his recent visit to Scotland. But after decades of oil and gas production, the ineradicable legacy is of fractured landscapes and long-term pollution. 'My land is bisected, divided, by pipelines, roads, well sites, pads, all that. It's really hard on my heart.'

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Essays

Once a rainforest ... land cleared for a palm oil plantation, Indonesia. Photo: Rainforest Action Network via Flickr (CC BY-NC).

Privatizing nature, outsourcing governance: the economics of extinction
7th November 2016

The 'Global Redesign Initiative', a project of the World Economic Forum, aims to replace UN-based intergovernmental decision-making with unaccountable 'multi-stakeholder governance' run by and for corporations, writes Margi Prideaux. What future for nature and people in this brave new world? Generate profits for investors, or face extinction or exclusion to the margins of existence.

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'Love Planet' by emily792872 via Flickr (CC BY).

Gaia lives! Overcoming our fear of a living planet
21st October 2016

To embrace the Earth as truly alive is a step too far even for many committed environmentalists, writes Charles Eisenstein: worried that others may perceive us as unscientific, childish, woolly-headed and ridiculous. But it's a step we must take: in refusing to recognise the living Gaia that is both our creator and our home, we accept and perpetuate the philosophy of her destroyers.

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Fresh organic 'Heirloom' garlic from New Roots Farm in Newmarket NH, at the Portsmouth, NH farmer's market. Photo: ilovebutter via Flickr (CC BY).

Why the sustainable food movement is unstoppable: it's the philosophy!
3rd October 2016

Members of the food movement share an infectious vision, writes Jonathan Latham - one which is constructive, convivial, classless, raceless, international, and embraces the whole world. Unled yet inspirational, it rests on a novel, harmonious philosophy that combines science, recognition of planetary boundaries, and the universal need for wholesome sustenance.

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Jerusalem artichoke harvest at Sandy Lane Farm, Oxfordshire. Photo: Sandy lane Farm via Facebook.

Good nutrition begins in healthy soils
7th September 2016

There's no such thing as 'healthy food' if it's not produced by sustainable farming systems on living soils, Patrick Holden told the recent 'Food: The Forgotten Medicine' conference. But after 70 years of industrial farming, there's a huge job to be done to restore our depleted soils and the impoverished genetic diversity of our seeds and crops.

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The Baka have lived sustainably in their rainforest home for generations. Photo: Selcen Kucukustel / Atlas / Survival International.

Corporate capture: Big Conservation must break out of its Stockholm syndrome
2nd September 2016

Big conservation NGOs increasingly resemble the nature-destroying corporations they should be opposing, writes Margi Prideaux. This ideological capture is reflected in their vapid marketing to conservation 'consumers'; the serious abuse of indigenous communities they should be engaging as partners; and their willing sacrifice of core objectives to money and influence.

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Blogs

WITNESS: South Africa's Parliament split over future of fracking
5th December, 2016

Eight years ago the first exploration applications for unconventional gas extraction were submitted in South Africa. Last week fracking finally received official attention from South Africa's legislature during a debate that revealed how the country's different political parties gauge the benefits and risks linked to the drilling technique. JASPER FINKELDEY was at that debate.

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Traditional agriculture on a farm in Cuba, where organic and agroecological farming now produce most of the nation's food. Photo: Tach_RedGold&Green via Flickr (CC BY-SA).

Agroecology versus 'climate smart' - our next big challenge from COP22
30th November 2016

How to make farming 'climate friendly' was one of the hot topics at COP22 in Marrakesh, writes Natalie Bennett, with two contrasting models on show: 'climate smart' agriculture, with its reliance on industrial farming systems; and agroecology, which works with nature to build fertile, high-carbon, moisture-retaining soils, and sustain employment for millions of skilled land workers.

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A logging truck in Asia Pulp and Paper's PT Wira Karya Sakti pulpwood forest license. Jambi Province, Sumatra, Indonesia, in 2005. Now APP is financing forest restoration through the Belantara Foundation. Photo: Rainforest Action Network via Flickr (CC BY

Hope for forests at COP22
15th November 2016

COP22 has revealed signs of real momentum toward an effective role for tropical forests in achieving a low carbon future, writes Tony Juniper. Now for the hard bit - connecting with realities on the ground to make it happen. This will mean working with indigenous and other forest communities to support and reward their conservation efforts, while harnessing large-scale international carbon finance.

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WITNESS: Cleaning up the iconic but highly polluted Jukskei River

Efforts to clean up the Jukskei River are to be applauded but fall far short of what's really needed to return it to the former glory so many Johannesburg residents still remember writes LELYZAVETA IVANOVA

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THE ETHICAL FOODIE - Back to Basics
20th October, 2016

We refer to them as kitchen basics - milk and eggs - but how often do we stop to think about the true cost of their production? Not often enough writes TIM MADDAMS

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Resurgence & Ecologist Magazine

Brexit: A Modern Day Peasants' Revolt
18 November 2016

Progressive green thinkers have been seduced by the EU, but now it's time for the Greens to seize the moment, reclaim their radical roots and take the lead on Brexit writes PAUL KINGSNORTH

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Comment

A shining example of community renewables - the 'Solar Settlement' in Freiburg, Germany.  Photo: deedavee easyflow via Flickr (CC BY-SA).

Responding to populism: we need more politics in energy, not less!
7th December 2016

To secure the clean energy transformation for the long term we must get the good news out there, writes Natalie Bennett - driving forward a popular movement for warm, comfortable homes, affordable fuel bills, community renewables and thriving local economies.

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Solar roof at Moor Hall Primary School, Sutton Coldfield, completed on 1st November 2012. But with government policy changes and now a new 'solar tax' on commercial property installations including schools, there's no longer much to celebrate. Photo: Birm

Chancellor - stop the solar tax hike!
5th December 2016

Next April the UK government proposes to increase taxes on self-consumed solar electricity installations on schools, offices, warehouses and factories by a whopping 6-8 times, write the STA and undersigned. This inexplicable move, which threatens a once thriving solar industry already on its knees, must be abandoned.

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Aftermath of Hurricane Sandy at Breezy Point, NY, 11th July 2012. Photo: Lance Corporal Scott Whiting, Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune via DVIDSHUB on Flickr (CC BY).

Mr. Trump: your climate policy will impact the lives of of billions - for better or worse
30th November 2016

Donald Trump has made some big policy flips since his election victory, writes Travis N. Rieder. But will the flippery extend to climate change? The danger is not just that America's emissions could soar under a Trump Presidency, but that other nations may follow suit. We must work to make sure he recognises his moral responsibility to humanity. The lives of millions depend on it!

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Hunger: a street-dweller in New Delhi, India. Photo: johnjodeery via Flickr (CC BY).

India's 'economic miracle' is built on debt, dispossession and now, monetary destruction
30th November 2016

After two decades of neoliberalism, India's magnates and corporations are profiting as never before, writes Colin Todhunter. But the entire economic edifice is built on the dispossession of the poor, locked into debt servitude, and ever rising income inequality. Prime Minister Modi's latest move, 'demonetization', is yet another example of the state stealing from the poor to give to the obscenely rich.

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Sorry mate, nothing doing: the Court of Justice of the European Union in Luxembourg. Photo: Transparency International EU Office via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

We can still stop the toxic EU-Canada trade deal in its tracks
24th November 2016

The European Parliament just voted against referring CETA, the EU's toxic trade deal with Canada, for legal scrutiny by the European Court of Justice, write Kevin Smith & Jean Blaylock. But this astonishing decision comes with an important silver lining: 258 MEPs voted in favour, building a platform from which to defeat CETA altogether in the main vote in February.

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New scientific insights on ecologically unequal trade
23rd November, 2016

Conventional economic analyses of trade tend only to discern the flows of money, writes NICK MEYNEN. But by also considering biophysical metrics - such as material and energy flows, and embodied water and land - ecological economists can identify the asymmetric flows of resources obscured by the apparent reciprocity of market prices.

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Sônia Guajajara, coordinator of the National Indigenous Association, marching for indigenous rights to health care. Photo: Gert-Peter Bruch / Planète Amazone.

Resisting authoritarianism: Brazil's indigenous victories show the way
22nd November 2016

Brazil's indigenous peoples rose up against the government's plans to suppress the rights they had fought so hard to win over decades, writes Christian Poirier. Their victory shows the way to defend our achievements and rights: collective struggle, organized response, strong mobilization and ceaseless pressure.

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Reviews

From front cover of 'The man who ate the zoo' by Richard Girling, published by Chatto & Windus.

Frank Buckland: 'the man who ate the zoo'
8th November 2016

As Victorian eccentrics go, Frank Buckland was a prime specimen, writes Martin Spray. But this new book about his rich and remarkable life is much more than a collection of anecdotes about his extraordinary doings, his inordinate curiosity about the natural world, and the animals he kept - and ate: a stimulating companion for wet days, cold evenings and wakeful nights.

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You say you want a revolution?
3rd November, 2016

The latest blockbuster exhibition from the V&A celebrates the music of its time and those who are forever linked to it, and one of the key outcomes of this counter-culture revolution was the very first Earth Day on April 22nd 1970.

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Cover shot of trapped badger used for the new edition of 'The Fate of the Badger' by Richard Meyer, published by Fire-raven Writing.

'The Fate of the Badger': the great badger scapegoating conspiracy
11th October 2016

Thirty years ago, there was no evidence that badgers spread bovine TB among cattle, writes Lesley Docksey. Nor is there now. Yet badgers are still being slaughtered in a futile attempt to control the disease. This timely republication of Richard Meyer's 1986 book reveals the belligerent ignorance of the officials, politicians and farmers driving the failed policy.

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Right of Reply

Longleaf Pine Regeneration in South Carolina. Photo: Justin Meissen via Flickr (CC BY-SA).

UK biomass power industry is a vital part of the renewable energy mix
27th October 2016

Contrary to arguments advanced in a recent Ecologist article, the biomass industry supplying the Drax power station in North Yorkshire is a model of sustainability, writes Nina Skorupska, and delivers genuine, substantial emissions reductions compared to coal.

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SBP certification scheme: debunking the myths
7th September, 2016

In a second response to a recent article published in the Ecologist, "Are the UK 'biomass sustainability standards' legitimising forest destruction?", SBP Chief Executive Officer Carstem Huljus debunks the myths in a right of reply

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SCS Global Services Correction to its rebuttal of misleading and inaccurate statements in...


In response to a recent article published in the Ecologist, "Are the UK 'biomass sustainability standards' legitimising forest destruction?", SCS has prepared this point-by-point rebuttal to several misleading and inaccurate statements, and invites readers with additional questions to contact us directly.

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Ecologist Partners

Lancashire: a local demonstration against fracking - 'Nanas to the front. Advance!' Photo: Victoria Buchan-Dyer via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

Fracking trumps climate change, pollution, health - and democracy
13th October 2016

Last week the EU ratified the Paris Agreement to limit climate change, writes Tony Bosworth. So how did Communities Secretary Sajid Javid mark the occasion? By overturning Lancashire's democratic rejection of fracking, so giving a whole new fossil fuel industry the green light to let rip. Hypocrisy? The word hardly does justice to our government's mendacity.

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Permaculture 'inventor' Bill Mollison, who died this weekend. Photo: Permaculture Association / Magazine.

Peaceful warrior: Permaculture visionary Bill Mollison
26th September 2016

Australian educator, author and co-inventor of Permaculture, Bruce Charles 'Bill' Mollison, died on the 24 September 2016 in Sisters Creek, Tasmania. He has been praised across the world for his visionary work, and left behind a global network of 'peaceful warriors' in over 100 countries working tirelessly to fulfill his ambition to build harmony between humanity and Mother Earth.

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Calendar

Postgrowth debate on 28 Nov 2016

The End of Growth?
11 November 2016

An evening debate with Federico Demaria, Graeme Maxton, Jørgen Randers and Kate Raworth at the House of Commons, Monday 28 Nov 2016

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Feeding the Insatiable
7th October 2016

An international summit exploring real and imagined narratives of art, energy and consumption for a troubled planet, taking place at Schumacher College, Dartington, on 11th November 2016

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Courses

Yale University Launches Online Specialization Classes Open to the Public
9th September, 2016

If you've got the 'Back to School' bug this week then check out these brand new online courses from the prestigious Yale University's School of Forestry and Environmental studies - the courses are based on the award-winning Journey of the Universe film and book

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Educating for Gaia: a wholistic approach to Earth science
28th April 2016

As a society, we are strangely disconnected from the Earth, writes Stephan Harding. It's as if we were aliens placed here to prod and poke with our scientific instruments whilst feeling no sense of meaning, belonging or closeness to her ancient crumpled surface or rich, teeming biodiversity - a state of mind that a forthcoming course at Schumacher College aims to reverse.

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News in Brief

White-letter Hairstreak (Satyrium w-album), Parc de Woluwé, Brussels, Belgium. Photo: Frank Vassen via Flickr (CC BY).

Vital EU wildlife laws saved! But will UK keep them after Brexit?
7th December 2016

Two key wildlife laws that underpin nature conservation across the EU will be retained intact, the EU Commission announced today after an 18 month review that generated record public engagement due to fears that they would be weakened. Now campaigners are determined to ensure the UK retains the laws post-Brexit.

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Gene drives could be used, for example, to attack fast-breeding pest species like aphids. But with what consequences on other species and wider ecosystems? Photo: Nigel Jones via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

Biodiversity Convention call to block new 'genetic extinction' GMOs
6th December 2016

160 global groups have called for a moratorium on new 'genetic extinction' technology at the UN Convention on Biological Diversity meeting in Cancun, Mexico. Gene drive technology, they say, poses serious and irreversible threats to biodiversity, national sovereignty, peace and food security.

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'Entry forbidden - Law number 26834 - Law number 28736 - Zone of restricted access owing to the presence of indigenous peoples living in isolation'. Sign in the Manu National Park, Peru. Photo: oarranzli via Flickr (CC BY-ND).

Amazon: rainforest road threatens Peru's last isolated tribes
1st December 2016

Peru's Congress may soon approve a road through remote rainforest which is home to the country's last uncontacted tribes. The link to the Inter-Oceanic highway would open the area up to land grabs, wood cutting and gold mining, and expose vulnerable indigenous people to diseases to which they have no immunity.

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Flaring at the Scott Township fracking well, Pennsylvania. Photo: WCN 24/7 via Flickr (CC BY-NC).

Climate? What climate? IEA backs fossil-fuelled future
30th November 2016

The International Energy Agency's latest World Energy Outlook is calling for increased investment in new oil and gas, writes Oliver Tickell, while minimising the fast-growing and ever lower-cost contribution to world energy supply of renewables like wind and solar.

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Hvalba beach, Faroe Islands, during a Grindadráp. Photo: Erik Christensen via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA).

Sea Shepherd captain 'guilty' of causing suffering to dolphins
28th November 2016

The captain of a Sea Shepherd speedboat who was attempting to guide a pod of over 200 Atlantic white-sided dolphins from slaughter on a Faroe Islands 'killing beach' has been convicted by a Danish court on animal cruelty charges.

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Scottish beaver seen in 2008. Photo: Paul Stevenson via Flickr (CC BY).

Scotland's wild beavers win legal protection
24th November 2016

The Scottish government has announced that its wild beaver populations will be given the full protection of both UK and EU law. The decision has been welcomed by campaigners who point out all the benefits of beavers to biodiversity, water management and flood control. Now, they say, England and Wales should follow suit.

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High Court gives UK Government eight months to draw up fresh air quality plan

The UK Government has been ordered by a High Court judge to draw up an improved plan by July next year which must bring air pollution within legal limits.

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Stop CETA Luxembourg make their views known, 17th October 2016. Photo: Friends of the Earth Europe via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA).

Rebel MEPs demand legal scrutiny of CETA's ‘corporate court' system
18th November 2016

With the EU Parliament voting next week on CETA, the EU-Canada trade deal, 89 MEPs are demanding that its system of 'corporate courts' must first be verified by the European Court of Justice as compatible with existing EU law. But pro-CETA parliamentary leaders are trying to block all debate in the run-up to the vote.

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Military tanks in fields cultivated by a-Ras al-Ahmar community, partially seen in the top-left corner. Photo: 'Aref Daraghmeh, B'Tselem, 27 Jan. 2016.

Israeli military resumes live fire manoevres on Palestinian farmland
17th November 2016

Israeli military forces have resumed their harassment of Palestinian pastoralists in the occupied Jordan Valley, part of the West Bank, holding live-fire tank and infantry maneuvers on pastures and cropland close to local communities, accompanied by the forced expulsion of both people and livestock.

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Red squirrel among dead bracken at Kinrara, northern Scotland. Photo: Paul Buxton via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

Red squirrels return to Scotland's Caledonian forest
15th November 2016

A project to reintroduce red squirrels to isolated areas of regenerating forest in the Scottish Highlands gets under way this month. This will increase both the numbers and the range of red squirrels in the UK, and help to regenerate their native Caledonian forest habitat.

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A raging wildfire 24 km south of Fort McMurray 7th May 2016 - part of a 1,500 square kilometre inferno that prompted the evacuation of nearly 90,000 people from the northern Alberta city. Photo: Chris Schwarz / Government of Alberta via Flickr (CC BY-ND).

WMO: 2015 / 2016 temperature records creating surge of climate refugees
14th November 2016

Record global temperatures in 2015 and 2016 are causing a humanitarian crisis that is more than double that of conflict as a cause of displacement and migration, the WMO stated today. Heatwaves, flood, drought and fires are all contributing to the declining food and water security affecting over 60 million people worldwide.

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COP22 in Marrakesh. Photo: Rhys Gerholdt / WRI via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA).

COP22: American Muslims vote to ditch fossil fuels
11th November 2016

An influential organisation of American Muslims announced at COP22 in Marrakesh that it will end investment in fossil fuels, and urged its partners to follow suit, writes Alex Kirby. The move adds to pressure on sovereign wealth and pension funds worth $19 trillion to follow suit to meet Paris Agreement targets.

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