News Analysis

Black smoke billows from the UNWRA compound set ablaze by Israel in Operation Cast Lead, 15th January 2009. The compound was burned to the ground. Photo: Al Jazeera English via Flickr.

Armed robbery in Gaza - Israel, US, UK carve up the spoils of Palestine's stolen gas
24th July 2014

Israel desperately covets Gaza's gas as a 'cheap stop-gap' yielding revenues of $6-7 billion a year, writes Nafeez Ahmed. The UK's BG and the US's Noble Energy are lined up to do the dirty work - but first Hamas must be 'uprooted' from Gaza, and Fatah bullied into cutting off its talks with Russia's Gazprom.

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Syncrude refinery, Alberta. Photo from the 2014 Tar Sands Healing Walk (www.healingwalk.org) by Rainforest Action Network.

Ignore tar sands emissions! EU buckles under US, Canada pressure in TTIP talks
23rd July 2014

The EU's Fuel Quality Directive is set to be the first casualty of the TTIP trade talks, writes Derek Leahy. Canada and the US have threatened to pull out unless the EU ignores the massive emissions of oil from tar sands - and the EU is collapsing under the pressure.

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A tobacco farmer in Marondera District, Zimbabwe. Photo: Zimbabwe Ministry of Agriculture.

Tobacco - Zimbabwe's forests are going up in smoke
22nd July 2014

A flood of smallholders that have benefited from Zimbabwe's land reform are turning to tobacco as their crop of choice, reports Ray Mwareya. But the economic gains are coming at a terrible cost - the accelerating destruction of the country's forests.

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Deyeatee and Comfort, JogBahn Clan women leaders, reading the petition. Photo: Jason Taylor for Friends of the Earth, 2014.

Liberia - communities join to fight the palm oil land grab
18th July 2014

Liberia's Jogbahn Clan is at the forefront of efforts to resist the grab of Indigenous Peoples' land and forests for palm oil plantations. But according to the country's President, they are only 'harrassing and extorting' international investors.

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San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station, March 2013. Photo: D Ramey Logan / Wikimedia Commons.

Nuclear waste - the unanswered questions that won't go away
20th July 2014

The recent closure of five US power stations is forcing the industry to confront big questions about radioactive waste, writes Paul Brown. Who is to pay the mounting costs of managing the wastes and keeping them secure? And precisely where will be their final resting place?

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Green Living

A Palestinian woman hugs an olive tree to protect it from destruction by the Israeli army. Photo: via Frank M. Rafik / Flickr.

Bethlehem: 'No matter how many olive trees they destroy, will will plant more!'
18th July 2014

Since 1967, Israeli soldiers and 'settlers' in occupied Palestine have destroyed 800,000 olive trees in an attempt to force Palestinian farmers from their land, writes Megan Perry. 'Our response to this injustice will never be with violence, and we will never give up and leave.'

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Luke Marion, installer Chris Jardine and Barbara Hammond connect the 140kW scheme's last panel, completing Oxford's biggest solar installation.

Pioneering community renewables in Oxford
11th July 2014

A partnership between an Oxford-based social enterprise and the local Council provides a blueprint for financing community energy projects, writes Wendy Twist. And with £2.3 million in the bank, things are really starting to move ...

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Hauling sweet chestnut roundwood up the steep include. Photo: Moulsecoomb Forest Garden.

A green building in a green forest shade
28th June 2014

A Sussex-based forest gardening project has overcome adversity to celebrate its 20th anniversary, writes Jan Goodey. And now it features one of the most eco of eco-builds in Britain, using all local timber, clay, straw ... and wine bottles.

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Campaigning

As a boy, the author pulls a big's tail on the family farm - around the time that Parliament, in 1953, allowed farmers to add antibiotics to animal feed.

Antibiotics saved me - now help me save them
24th July 2014

As a youngster on a small farm, antibiotics saved Richard Young's life after a scratch on barbed wire led to septicemia. Now, he's campaigning to stop the routine, mass use of antibiotics on intensive farms, so that they can carry on saving human lives for many years to come ...

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Anti-fracking protest at Barton Moss - but as far as the Government is concerned, dissent is unimportant. Photo: Manchester Friends of the Earth via Flickr.

Fracking Britain: without debate, the Government imposes its 'right to rule'
21st July 2014

The UK Government's policy is to frack at all costs, against public opinion and compelling evidence of environmental damage and poor returns, writes Paul Mobbs - a timely reminder that as far as the Government is concerned, it has a God-given right to rule over us, no matter what we think or want.

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Colorful Heirloom Potatoes - 'Carola', 'All Red', 'All Blue', and 'Purple Viking' - collection  from Seed Savers. Photo: Susy Morris via Flickr.

Building an International Seed Savers Exchange
19th July 2014

Recent decades have seen a hardening global clampdown on the rights of farmers to use, save, develop, share, swap and distribute the seeds that produce the food we all eat, writes Andrew Kimbrell - and which constitute an essential common heritage of mankind. Here's his plan to fight back against the seed monopolists ...

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Interviews

Image: 'Gaia's surrender' by Jef Sadi via Flickr.

Gaia Theory - an Arctic warning
2nd July 2014

As composer Jonathan Dove prepares for the premiere of his 'Gaia Theory' at the BBC Proms this month, he explains to Laurence Rose how his recent work has been inspired by a wake-up call - right from the very top of the world.

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Otero Agamemnon speaking at the Renewable Energy conference, 2013.

Agamemnon Otero, renewable dynamo
23rd June 2014

Repowering London is an energising force - not just making renewable energy projects happen, but engaging communities to finance them, training young people to install them, and ensuring the benefits stay local. Lucy Anna Scott meets the dynamic Agamemnon Otero ...

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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

Resurgence & Ecologist Magazine

World Future Council going global with 100% renewable energy
23rd May 2014

A new global campaign that advocates 100% renewable energy aims to change the political mindset and make renewable energy 'the new normal'.

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Comment

Zac Goldsmith opens the new milking parlour at Pierrepont Farm in Frensham, Surrey.

Antibiotics: British lives must come before factory farm profits
24th July 2014

The UK's massive use of antibiotics on farms is breeding lethal drug resistance into bacteria, writes Zac Goldsmith. Although we use five times more antibiotics per animal than Scandinavian countries, Cameron is mysteriously reluctant to clamp down on abuses.

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Antique furniture like this Ming era Ta couch in the Shanghai Museum has inspired thousands of 'hongmu' copies among China's rich - and the demand is devouring forests across Southeast Asia. Photo: Gisling via Wikimedia Commons.

The rosewood massacre - China must act
23rd July 2014

Surging Chinese demand for rosewood used in 'hongmu' furniture is ruining forests across southern Asia, writes Zuzana Burivalova. As demand surges, China must impose stricter regulations and harsher punishments or the forests may never recover.

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Cattle packed in as far as the eye can see at the Harris Ranch feedlot in California. Photo: Farm Sanctuary via Flickr.

The true cost of your beefburger is much worse than you know
22nd July 2014

US beef carries a heavy environmental cost in water, land, emissions. But few of us know quite how damaging beef is, writes Gidon Eshel, nor that it is more than five times worse than pork, poultry, eggs or cheese. Isn't it time we did something about it?

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Homeless in Gaza after Operation Cast Lead, 2009. Photo: Physicians for Human Rights via Flickr.

Gaza should be the Kuwait of the Levant - but its gas brings only war and poverty
19th July 2014

Operation Protective Edge is the war of a colonial state dedicated to expanding its theft of Palestine's natural resources, writes Tascha Shahriari-Parsa - incarcerating and bombing its people in the world's biggest open air prison, while growing rich at their expense.

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A dragnet that captures too much marine life. Joachim Müllerchen, CC BY-SA.

Protect our inshore seabeds to allow fish stocks to recover!
18th July 2014

The UK's coastal waters are producing little but tiddlers and scallops, writes Jason Hall-Spencer - and to blame is the endless gouging of the seabed by trawlers and dredgers - even in 'marine reserves'. We must allow our marine ecosystems to rebuild!

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The Abengoa solar tower, Spain. Photo: Alex Lang via Flickr.

Decarbonising the world energy system without nuclear
17th July 2014

Nuclear power advocates believe the technology is essential to building a fossil fuel free world energy system. In fact it is optional, writes David Elliott - and not even very helpful. Efficiency and the 'new renewables' can do the job faster, and at much lower cost.

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Vandana Shiva leads a protest in India against Monsanto's GM seeds. Now she's on the warpath against Avaaz. Photo: Daniel Voglesong via Flickr.

Avaaz's global 'ebay of seeds' - how did they get it so wrong?
16th July 2014

Already 56,000 people have pledged to support a global 'internet seed swap' initiative promoted by Avaaz, writes Julian Rose. Trouble is, the plans are deeply flawed, and have been developed without consultation with major seed saving groups worldwide.

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Reviews

'The Secret World of Oil' by Ken Silverstein - front cover. Image via Gawker.com.

A descent into Big Oil's inferno
8th July 2014

In Ken Silverstein's 'The Secret World of Oil', Louis Proyect investigates the uber-wealthy middlemen of oil, inhabiting a pampered universe of moral squalor and depravity - one in which Tony Blair found himself completely at home.

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The Most Beautiful Place in the World: IMHO - Torres Del Paine National Park, Chile. This amazing light lasted for only a couple of minutes at sunrise. The rest of the day was cloudy and overcast. Photo: © Peter Essick.

Our beautiful, fragile world
26th June 2014

There is much merit in the cliché that 'a picture is worth a thousand words', writes Edgar Vaid, but 'Our Beautiful, Fragile World' suggests that great photography complemented by explanatory text is worth even more ...

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Greeting visitors to The Sellafield Story, a Radiation Free Lakeland activist offers leaflets setting out a dramatically different narrative. Photo: RFL.

Beacon of Nuclear Truth?
12th June 2014

The cash-strapped Cumbrian Museum is rebranded to tell 'The Sellafield Story'. The UK's favourite scientist Brian Cox and Government Minister Baroness Verma provide razzmatazz along with the Happy Robot. Lollypops anyone?

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Blogs

Local currencies, like these Totnes and Stroud 'pounds' are intended to stimulate local economic resilience and keep benefits within communities. But is there a better way to achieve the same ends, everywhere? Photo: London Permaculture via Flickr.

Closing the money loop to build resilient local economies
21st July 2014

Using local currencies to stimulate local economies and revalue local labour over imported products and resources sounds like a great idea - but recent experiences have proved disappointing. Are there other ways to 'close the money loop'?

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It's all very well painting cycle lanes onto roads - but we must do far, far more than that to make cycling a safe and pleasant transport option. Photo: Cian Ginty via Flickr.

To keep cyclists safe will need deep, radical change
19th July 2014

The Commons Transport Committee has advised Government to budget £10 per head to create a safe cycling environment, writes Ian Walker. But that's grossly underestimating the challenge ahead - a major rethink of planning, health and transport policies is needed.

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Some 90 miles off the Sao Paulo coast, Ilha da Queimada Grande looks very pretty from far away. But up close, it's terrifying. Photo: Prefeitura Municipal Itanhaém.

Great snakes! Football fans, explore at your peril
15th July 2014

Brazil's Ilha de Queimada Grande is the only home of one of the world's deadliest, and most endangered, snakes, writes Natasha Geiling. Just the place for Brazil's disgraced football team to escape the wrath of furious fans, if they can only get a permit ...

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Mali elephants by Carlton Ward Jr.  / carltonward.com.

Why do the local people protect the elephants?
14h July 2014

Mali's elephants have lived for millennia in the inhospitable Sahara, writes Susan Canney. But with their survival at risk from a host of modern, 21st century threats, local people are coming together to protect them - and finding that they too are benefiting.

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Ecologist Partners

Celestine Akpobari, from World on Want's Nigerian partner Social Action. Photo: WoW.

The new frontlines of war
20th March 2014

This Saturday War on Want holds its Frontlines conference in London on the global conflict between communities and corporations, writes Paul Collins. Featuring a host of inspiring speakers, it will forge new alliances and new strategies of resistance.

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Communications Challenge Award 2014
28th January 2014

Student Unions from across the UK have been performing and filming eco-stunts to spread sustainability ideas, in a quest to win this year Green Impact Communications Challenge Award.

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News in Brief

A typical indigenous village in up-country Buriram Province, NE Thailand. Photo: Pinyapat Smily Wilaichit via Flickr.

Thailand army forcibly evicts six forest villages
23rd July 2014.

Forest-dwellers in Buriram province involved in a land dispute with the Thai government have been forcibly evicted, intimidated, arrested, held without charge, and dumped on a site unfit for human habitation with no water supply.

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Neurath coal-fired plant, in Germany, is one of Europe’s worst polluters. Photo: Bert Kaufmann via Wikimedia Commons.

Germany and UK top EU's 'Dirty 30' pollution league
22nd July 2014

A new report names the 30 biggest sources of greenhouse gases in the EU, writes Kieran Cooke. Coal-fired power plants are undermining Europe's long-term targets on emissions reductions - and the UK and Germany lead the list of shame.

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The social structure of badger families is perturbed by the loss of a single member, and this can cause the spread of any TB they may be harbouring. Photo: Tim Brookes via Flickr.

Badger Trust's High Court cull challenge
21st July 2014

The Badger Trust will challenge the trial badger culls in the High Court next month, claiming that Environment Secretary Liz Truss and Natural England are acting unlawfully in failing to appoint an expert panel to oversee the experiment.

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At the heart of the US oil industry, 'solar sunflowers' just off the I-35 in Austin, Texas. Photo: Jim Hutchison via Flickr.

California and Texas are mainstreaming renewable energy
20th July 2014

California and Texas continue to break new ground in making electricity generation from renewable sources, writes Mike G. Solar PV in particular has become a vital part of the US' energy mix, accounting for half of new generation capacity.

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Water depth marker in the dried out bed of Lake Albert, South Australia. Photo: Bidgee via Wikimedia Commons.

Australia's drought - yes, it's climate change
18th July 2014

Australia's prime minister thinks climate change is 'crap' and has just abolished his country's carbon-pricing system. But scientists say that it's rising levels of CO2 that are leaving the south of the country parched and sweltering - and it's only going to get worse.

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Liz Truss threatens a badger with a garden fork at the Family Action's Escape Allotment in Swaffham. Photo: Matthew Usher / edp24.co.uk/

Truss - the badgers must die!
17th July 2014

The new Environment Secretary Liz Truss flunked her first 'Green test' today as she told Parliament that the badger cull goes on. We run this excerpt from the Parliamentary record in which she states 'We are progressing with our programme!'

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Wild animals photographed at Jolly's Exotics circus. Photo: Animal Defenders International.

Bill launched to ban wild animals in circuses
17th July 2014

A former Defra minister will introduce a new Bill to Parliament in September to ban wild animals in circuses. It reflects Government policy since 2012 and the Prime Minister has promised 'We're going to do it'. But will he keep his word?

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Smoke from Russian forest fires obscures the Sun in 2010. Photo: Ximonic, Simo Räsänen via Wikimedia Commons.

Climate inaction could cost Europe 200,000 lives a year
16th July 2014

A failure to act to reduce the impacts of climate change could cost Europe almost €200 billion and 200,000 lives a year, writes Tim Radford. These 'conservative estimates' are published in a new European Commission study.

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A Jarawa woman and boy by the side of the Andaman Trunk Road. Photo: © Salomé / Survival.

Andaman tribe threatened by illegal 'human safari' road upgrade
15th July 2014

An illegal road on India's Andaman Islands has already opened up a 55,000 year old tribe to disease, sexual abuse and the theft of their resources. But instead of closing the road, local politicians are upgrading it with two new bridges.

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Calendar

Resurgence Summer Camp

A weekend of talks, music, crafts and walks hosted by Satish Kumar at Europe's foremost sustainable conference centre. Off-grid, sustainable living in action.

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Courses

Leading for Sustainability Programme

Join Lead's highly experiential programme for experienced, mid to senior professionals and sustainability practitioners who want to increase their ability to make positive change in the world around them.

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