News Analysis

Monsoon Bliss in the Nilgiri Hills of Kerala - now baking in the torrid  summer heat as the monsoon fails to make landfall on cue. Photo: ram reddy via Flickr (CC BY-NC).

India's killer heatwave - a deadly warning of the world we face, without climate action
30th May 2015

As delegates prepare for the Bonn climate talks, India is being struck by extreme heat with a long-delayed monsoon season and a death toll of thousands, writes Liz Hanna. If this is an indicator of the warming world to come, it's giving us all the reasons we could possibly want to act decisively before it's too late.

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A pair of Northern Bald Ibis engaged in courtship at their nest in the Palmyra desert the year of the rediscovery (2002). Photo: Gianluca Serra.

The Northern Bald Ibis is extinct in the Middle East - but we can't blame it on IS
29th May 2015

Reports that Syria's iconic Northern Bald Ibis colony is endangered by IS's capture of Palmyra are mistaken, writes Gianluca Serra. The species is already extinct as a breeding population for reasons unconnected with IS. The war that is destroying Syria came only as the last straw for a long-dwindling species whose plight the world chose to ignore.

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'System change not climate change' banner at the 2009 COP15 UN climate talks in Copenhagen, Denmark. Will Paris be any more successful? Photo: kris krüg via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

Will Paris be another 'Hopenhagen'? Time is running out for climate negotiators
28th May 2015

With barely six months until the Paris climate conference begins, negotiating texts remain a morass of alternative wordings, square brackets and legal uncertainties, writes Illari Aragon. With deep divisions between countries on major points of principle, negotiators are meeting next week in Bonn to thrash out differences - but it's far from certain that they will be able to do so.

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Farmers in rural Nigeria protesting at Wilmar's destruction of their crops, trees and farmland. Photo: FOEI / ERA.

Deforestation, exploitation, hypocrisy: no end to Wilmar's palm oil land grabs
27th May 2015

With the deadline due this year for the full implementation of Wilmar's 'No peat, no deforestation, no exploitation' promise, the oil palm giant is keen to push its green image in Europe. But for communities suffering its land grabs in Nigeria, nothing has changed. While Wilmar spins green rhetoric, its bulldozers are still destroying vast swathes of forest and farmland.

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Grangemouth oil refinery, Scotland. Photo: Paul Mcgreevy via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA).

IMF reports: fossil fuel subsidies worth $5.6 trillion per year
26th May 2015

A new report from the IMF has quantified the prodigious subsidies doled out to the fossil fuel industries, writes Pete Dolack - an astonishing $5.6 trillion per year, over 7% of world product, including direct payments, tax breaks and unpaid environmental costs. The obscene scale of public largesse proves the need for a social movement to challenge global energy capitalism.

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Green Living

The Common Carder Bumblebee is easy to identify - it's a drab gingery brown all over. Photo: Dave Goulson.

Help our vital pollinators - join the Great British Bee Count!
Paul de Zylva / Friends of the Earth

You can help save our bees with 'citizen science', writes Paul de Zylva - recording those you spot in your local area to help build up a long term picture of their changing numbers. Today we publish an identification guide to the 'top ten' bees, so you can get started right away. But be quick - the Great British Bee Count 2015 ends on Sunday.

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After a day of rain, a flaming sunset illuminates the Smoky Mountains. Photo: Boqiang Liao via Flickr (CC BY-SA).

Wilderness is the water in which our freedom swims
23rd May 2014

The joy of the wild is rooted deep in the human spirit and without it our lives are starved of a vital nutrient, writes Grant A. Mincy. Only through experience of wilderness and its untamed beauty can we be truly human, and only in wilderness can we open our awareness of the perilous wonder of being, and know the freedom that lies within us all.

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Six Spot Burnet Moth and Large Skipper Butterfly supping nectar on Common Knapweed. Photo: © 2015 Jo Cartmell.

Jo's mini meadow - our beautiful and vital insects
7th May 2015

First Jo Cartmell converted her uninspiring front lawn into a 'mini-meadow' full of wild flowers. Next, she waited the return of insect life - not for very long as it turned out. Barely a few years into the project, a remarkable profusion of bees, beetles, moths and butterflies were buzzing and humming around the blooms ...

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Campaigning

March Against Monsanto 2015 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, probably the single country most adversely impacted by Monsanto's mission for world domination. Photo: March Against Monsanto via Facebook.

Marching on Monsanto - we demand food freedom!
28th May 2015

Monsanto has a simple purpose, writes Pete Dolack: to control the world's food supply, monopolizing seeds and agrochemicals to extract profit from every bite of food we eat. Caring nothing for the disease, poverty and destruction that it causes, it has suborned politicians, governments and regulators to its will. But millions are determined to stop it.

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Sellafield, where the Nugen consortium wants to build three AP1000 nuclear reactors on the adjacent 'Moorside' site. Photo: Pharma Mike via Flickr (CC BY-ND).

Lies, damned lies, and energy statistics - why nuclear is so much less than it claims to be
26th May 2015

It's odd how often the contribution of nuclear energy is overstated, writes Neil Crumpton, by mixing up 'energy' and 'electricity', while a similar trick to understates the importance of renewables like wind and solar. Even odder is how the mistake always seems to go the same way, to make nuclear look bigger than it really is, and renewables smaller. Welcome to the nuclear 'X factor'!

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Women from RUWFAG. Photo: Global Justice Now.

Ghana's women farmers resist the G7 plan to grab Africa's seeds
22nd May 2015

Sharing and saving seed is a crucial part of traditional farming all over Africa, writes Heidi Chow. Maybe that's why governments, backed by multinational seed companies, are imposing oppressive seed laws that attack the continent's main food producers and open the way to industrial agribusiness. But Ghana's women farmers are having none of it.

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Interviews

Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz speaking at the Left Forum, 20 March 2010. Photo: Thomas Good / NLN via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA).

The American genocide, indigenous resistance and human survival: Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz
21st May 2015

The Indigenous Peoples of North America are the survivors of a multi-century genocide that was still being deliberately waged in the 1950s and has still not stopped today, Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz told Stephyn Quirke. But the fightback is on, and for the world to overcome both genocide and ecocide, the indigenous struggle must grow to encompass the mass of humanity.

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Phyllis Omido, 2015 Goldman Environmental Prize winner for Africa, galvanized the community in Mombasa to shut down a smelter that was causing lead poisoning among its workers and local residents. (Photo: Goldman Environmental Prize)

Lead poisoning - fighting industrial pollution in Kenya is a dangerous business
Monday 20 April 2015

Lead poisoning from industrial pollution has imposed a terrible toll on Kenyans, writes Sophie Morlin-Yron, and single mother Phyllis Omido is no exception - lead from a nearby metal refinery badly damaged her own son's health. But it was when she decided to fight back against the polluters that a whole new realm of threats and dangers opened up.

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WATCH and SHARE

Manta care - two divers free a huge Manta ray from a barnacled fishing line cutting deep into its wing.

Ecologist Film Unit

Champa from Dibulganj Village, is suffering from Tuberculosis. Photo: Sarah Stirk.

Ecologist Film Unit Coughing up coal
19th May, 2014

The Ecologist & Link TV investigate India's growing addiction to coal.

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EFU Film Fracking Hell – the environmental costs of the new US gas drilling boom
Jim Wickens

The gas stored in the Marcellus Shale formation is the subject of desperate drilling to secure US domestic energy supplies. But the process involved - hydraulic fracturing - is the focus of a bitter dispute over environmental damage and community rights

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WATCH and SHARE

Crawberry Hill Castle Eviction, 2nd August 2014, by Frack Free Crawberry Hill.

Resurgence & Ecologist Magazine

Satish Kumar

Satish Kumar - films to inspire the change-makers of the future
30 April 2015

A landmark 6-part documentary series is planned with Satish Kumar - peace and environment activist, religious philosopher, teacher, writer and broadcaster.

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Comment

Without a cooperative, trans-boundary approach to wildlife conservation, Africa will struggle to conserve its biodiversity - like these elephants in the Masai Mara, Tanzania. Photo:  R∂lf Κλενγελ via Flickr (CC BY-NC).

Only co-operative, trans-boundary conservation can save Africa's environment
29th May 2015

Africa's poor environmental record has its roots in colonialism, which cut artificial boundaries through peoples and ecosystems, and left a rigid 'fortress conservation' ethic, writes Willem Daniel Lubbe. It's time for countries to adopt a new pan-African environmentalism, and transcend their colonial past.

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Donnachadh McCarthy is among those engaged in a peaceful 'sit in' protest in Parliament Square on Monday 4th of May at the foot of Mahatma Ghandi's statue, prior to his arrest. Photo: via Facebook.

The poisonous extremism at the heart of yesterday's Queen's Speech
28th May 2015

Government plans to enact a 'domestic extremism' law, announced in yesterday's Queen's Speech, threaten to make thought criminals of all who challenge the established order, writes Donnachadh McCarthy. At risk are campaigners, protestors, journalists and all who dissent from Britain's neoliberal corporatocracy.

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These guys aren't waiting till 2050! 'Kayaktivists' opposing Shell's plans to drill for oil in the Arctic Ocean prepare for the 'Paddle in Seattle' protest, 16th May 2015. Photo: Backbone Campaign via Flickr (CC BY).

The world won't let Shell wait until 2050 to adapt its business to climate change
27th May 2015

Shell's senior management are treading an impossible path, writes Steffen Böhm. On the one hand they accept that climate change is real and serious, and that many of their fossil fuel assets may prove unburnable. On the other, they insist that business as usual will continue for decades to come. It's high time they smelt the coffee!

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HMS Victorious, one of the Royal Navy's four strategic missile submarines, departs her home port at HM Naval Base Clyde at Faslane. Photo: Thomas McDonald via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA).

UK nuclear weapons: a source of national insecurity?
26th May 2015

The serious failings revealed by William McNeilly on the UK's nuclear-armed submarines are indicators of a deeper malaise, writes Paul Ingram. With no realistic threat requiring a nuclear response, the whole exercise lacks meaning and purpose, so no wonder standards slip. But as they do so, they endanger us all.

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The signing of the EU's new GMO law on 11th March 2015 in Strasbourg with EuroParl President Martin Schulz and Zanda Kalnina Lukasevica, Latvian Parliamentary State Secretary for the European Affairs. Photo: European Union 2014 (CC BY-NC-ND).

Can EU countries really be GMO-free? The new GM food law won't make it easy
25th May 2015

In principle the EU's new rules on GMOs allow member states to opt out of GMO crops and foods, writes Mary Dobbs. But they can only do so on very limited grounds, and in a consistent and non-discriminatory way. Being GM-free may be a lot harder than some countries, and campaigners, suppose.

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If you want to improve education for the poor, like these school children in Sierra Leone, handing over hundreds of millions of pounds to global corporations is not the way to do it. Photo: bobthemagicdragon via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

Giving aid money to big business doesn't solve poverty. Who knew?
23d May 2015

The UK government has showered £500 million of its aid budget on 'partnerships' with global corporations that are meant to help the poor, writes Kevin Smith. Surprise - an independent assessment has found that the only ones to benefit were the companies themselves. This ideologically-driven farce must stop now!

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Hare coursing. Photo: via C Duggan / Flickr (CC BY-NC).

Bring back fox hunting and hare coursing? Not on our watch
22nd May 2015

Fresh from his surprise election victory, David Cameron is facing calls to expedite a 'free vote' in Parliament to repeal the law that forbids hunting with dogs, writes Chris Pitt. We must make sure our MPs vote to protect wild animals from the horrendous cruelty that resumed hunting would inflict on them.

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Reviews

'Marx Against the Peasant' by David Mitrany (1951) front cover (resized).

Green rising: the betrayal of Europe's peasant democracy
20th May 2015

100 years ago a new political movement swept across Europe, as a vision of agrarian democracy gripped a newly emancipated peasantry, writes Simon Fairlie. Betrayed by dogmatic socialists and crushed under the Nazi boot, it failed to leave a lasting mark on history. But could its time be coming once again?

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Front cover image from of 'In Defence of Life' by Sir Julian Rose, published by Earth Books.

In Defence of Life: essays on a radical reworking of green wisdom
23rd April 2015

Julian Rose's diverse collection of essays is engaging, enlightening and life affirming, writes Philip Lymbery - conveying an organic farmer's revulsion at the increasing horrors of industrial agriculture, while setting out his vision of the green and sustainable future he is working to bring about.

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Cowslips (Primula veris). Photo: Donna JW via Flickr (CC BY).

The joys and sufferings of plants as sentient beings
10th April 2015

Is it 'morally reprehensible' to arbitrarily decapitate roadside flowers? Yes it is, writes Martin Spray - at least in Switzerland. And now we know that plants have both senses and physiology, why not awareness and emotions too? Even legal standing to have their rights defended in court - at least if they are trees?

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Blogs

Prime Minister David Cameron at an IGas fracking site in Gainsborough on 13th January 2014, Photo: Number 10 (CC BY-NC-ND).

Forget fracking - efficiency and renewables are the key to energy security
27th May 2015

Shale gas advocates say we must open up the UK to fracking to reduce our dependence on Russian gas, writes Tony Bosworth. But why not just burn less of the stuff? Energy efficiency and renewables can achieve the same aim without the adverse impacts on land, water and climate.

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Love and peace! Boys in the Jerash Palestinian refugee camp in Jordan gather to raise their hands in peace signs. Photo: Omar Chatriwala via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

Undefeated after 67 years, Palestinians' thirst for peace and justice
15th May 2015

Today is Nakba day - when Palestinians everywhere remember in their native land, stolen homes, demolished villages and long-lost way of life with grief, anger and a deep yearning that endures from generation to generation, writes Johnny Barber.

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In her former role as climate change minister, Amber Rudd opening FloWave’s new cutting edge marine energy testing facility at the Univeristy of Edinburgh. Photo: DECC via Flickr (CC BY-ND).

Amber Rudd faces climate change battle with Tory 'grey blob'
13th May 2015

The battle for the soul of the Conservative party will intensify on the volatile issue of climate change, write Brendan Montague and Matteo Civillini. Energy Secretary Amber Rudd may be among the Tories' greenest but the 'grey blob' led by Owen Paterson may yet defeat her.

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Culling feral cats on Tasmania, similar to this one by the Rufus River in NSW - actually made them more abundant, not less. Photo: sunphlo via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA).

Cullers beware - killing 'pest' animals can increase their abundance
8th May 2015

A study of feral cats in Tasmania shows that culling them to reduce their impact on native wildlife had a paradoxical effect - their population went up! If you can't take 'pest' animals out faster than they can reproduce and move in from nearby areas, writes Christopher Johnson, you're better off not bothering at all.

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Ecologist Partners

Angeles Parra at BioCultura 2014. Photo. EcoArchivo.

BioCultura - celebrating Spain's organic revolution
27th February 2015

Europe's biggest organic fair kicks off today in Valencia, writes Pedro Burruezo - 30 years after the first ever BioCultura event in Madrid in 1985 kicked off Spain's organic revolution. Since then Spain has become Europe's biggest organic producer, and the sector is growing at a dizzying rate of over 10% a year.

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'The kingdom of God belongs to such as these'. Children in Tacloban City, Leyte Province, Philippines, amid the wreckage of Super Typhoon Yolanda / Hiyan, 21st December 2013. Photo: United Nations Photo via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

Rediscovering the moral dimension of climate change
9th February 2015

Pope Francis's forthcoming statement on climate change could just revitalise progress towards significant emissions cuts, writes Jonathon Porritt. But more than that, it will open up the space for a wider spirituality to guide our thinking, and campaigning, on climate and other key global challenges.

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News in Brief

Soon this could be happening to coral reefs everywhere - bleached Staghorn coral in Australia's Great Barrier Reef. Photo: Matt Kieffer via Flickr (CC BY-SA).

Geoengineer or our tropical reefs will die, scientists warn
30th May 2015

To keep the world's coral reefs alive we may have to cool tropical seas by blocking the sun's rays above them, writes Tim Radford. Even if the world reduces carbon emissions, warming already 'in the pipeline' could kill 90% of the world's coral by 2050 unless we act.

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Condemned to a life of misery and discrimination: one camp for Rohingya refugees near Sittwe, Rakhine State, can only be accessed by sea with boats transporting vital aid supplies such as rice and cooking oil. Photo: Mathias Eick, EU/ECHO, September 2013

Burma's race laws, expulsions, driving Rohingya refugees
29th May 2015

Decades violent expulsions, race laws and denial of citizenship lie at the root of the 'boat people' crisis in Thailand and Malaysia, writes Oliver Tickell. Attacks on the Rohingya minority have escalated since a new policy was announced in 2014 to permanently deny their rights.

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The Fakaofo solar array on Tokelau, which provides all the island's electricity. Photo: Chính Đặng-Vũ via Flickr (All rights reserved).

Pacific Islands heading for 100% renewable energy
28th May 2015

A host of Pacific nations are turning to renewable technologies to satisfy 100% of their energy, writes Maxine Newlands. Samoa is aiming to achieve 100% renewable energy by 2017, while Tokelau has already reached 94% including 100% of its electricity.

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The recent 100,000 gallon oil spill in Santa Barbara shows that accidents are always waiting to happen - and all the more so in a hazardous environment like the Arctic. But Shell says it's fine to drill for oil there - while refusing to release its 'indep

Shell's Arctic safety audit kept secret, may never see full light of day
27th May 2015

Shell claims a third party audit into its plans to drill for Arctic oil and gas has found 'no issues of significance', writes Joe Sandler Clarke. But the audit remains under wraps, and may never be released in full. Now Obama pledges his support for the project - just as it turns out that Shell selected the 'independent' auditor.

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Unit 3 of the Boundary Dam Power Station in Estevan, Saskatchewan, has been converted for post-combustion CCS, producing over 1 million tonnes of CO2 per year - pipelined to oil fields in the south of the province to increase recovery. Photo: SaskPower vi

False promise of 'carbon capture' exposed
26th May 2015

The widely touted 'carbon capture and storage' technology is much more expensive than wind and solar, says a Greenpeace report. It also represents a perverse subsidy to the fossil fuel sector that will only boost coal and oil, and delay the transition to a renewable energy system.

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The melting on the southern Antarctic peninsula has been so sudden, that even the scientific expedition's supply ship seems to have been caught out. Photo: J Bamber,

Once-stable Antarctic glaciers have suddenly started melting
23rd May 2015

A dramatic shift has taken place in the glaciers of the southern Antarctic peninsula, writes Bert Wouters. Six years ago these previously stable bodies suddenly stated shedding 60 cubic kilometres of ice per year into the ocean. A stark warning of further surprises to come?

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Photo: Public Eye Spoof 2013 for Coal India, via sehroiber / Flickr (CC BY-NC).

Support surge gives Greenpeace India new lease of life
21st May 2015

Greenpeace India is to fight on for another month after a surge of support from allies, new donors and staff, who have pledged to work through June for no pay after the Indian government blocked its bank accounts.

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Is the Pepsi brand getting tarnished? Pepsi sign in Rajasthan, India, by Matthew Stevens via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

India: unlawful Pepsi plant wins police protection
20th May 2015

First the Pepsi-Cola bottling company in south India caused outrage by depleting groundwater. Next it was found to be operating without valid permits.Then as protests grew the company won a High Court order giving it police protection. Now locals are vowing to keep the plant shut for good.

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Vast extents of rainforest have been cleared, but extensive dry woodlands like these near Mt Barnett in Australia are producing more trees. Photo: yaruman5 via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

Flourishing savanna woodlands mean forests are still absorbing carbon
18th May 2015

Despite massive clearance of carbon-rich forests for palm oil, cattle ranching, soybeans and other cash crops, writes Tim Radford, a new study finds that the net volume of carbon stored in trees is increasing thanks to their growing numbers on grasslands, on abandoned farmland, and in China.

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Calendar

Future NOW
Will Gethin

Taking place in the run up to Bristol's year as Green Capital 2015, this groundbreaking spiritual ecology conference calls for Consciousness Revolution.

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Courses

Telling Stories of the Future
Schumacher College

To celebrate 25 years at the forefront of environmental education, Schumacher College are launching a new short course programme: Soul, Spirit and Story.

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