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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

Zuzana Burivalova

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. more...
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

Derek Leahy

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. more...
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

The Ecologist

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. more...
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!

The Ecologist

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!' more...
Owen Paterson MP with Joe & Sephs Gourmet Popcorn. The 'Mad Dog' sign refers to a brand of lemonade. Photo: UKTI via Flickr.

Owen Paterson sacked: the end of 'badger bashing'?

Lesley Docksey

15th July 2014

Owen Paterson's departure from Government could see the end of the hated badger culls and a wider return to environmental sanity, writes Lesley Docksey. Given his disbelief in climate change and his arrogant disregard of science, it's not a moment too soon! more...
MP Liz Truss with wind turbine at the Family Action's Escape Allotment in Swaffham. Photo: Matthew Usher / edp24.co.uk/.

Britain's new Environment Secretary is a breath of fresh air

Oliver Tickell

15th July 2014

Britain's new Environment Secretary is young (38), female, blonde, believes in climate change, and has floated imaginative policies to deal with it from a carbon tax to 'personal carbon allowances'. As for badgers ... her silence on the topic promises well. more...
An anti-TTIP Flashmob protesting in Dortmund, Germany. Photo: campact via Flickr.

TTIP: Europe and America do not need business vs. state dispute rules

Cécile Toubeau

14th July 2014

The EU-US TTIP trade agreement would 'protect investors' by giving them the right to sue national government for changes in the law that reduce their returns, writes Cécile Toubeau - putting an end to progress on environment and human development. more...
Some springs on Ikaria, Greece, carry high levels of natural radioactivity - but that does not mean the radiation is good for you! Photo: Eleni Ikanou via Flickr.

An abuse of science - concealing fracking's radioactive footprint

Paul Mobbs

8th July 2014

A new scientific paper presents the radiation produced by fracking as 'natural' and harmless. But it's based on sketchy data, hyperbolic statistics and questionable assumptions, writes Paul Mobbs. Is it an attempt to stifle an essential public debate? more...
Model's prediction vs recorded data of (a) reactor (infected) cattle, shaded region shows 95% credibility from 5,000 simulations, and (b) distribution density of infected cattle. Image: Brooks-Pollock, Roberts, Keeling / Nature.

Culling badgers is no way to stop the spread of bovine TB

Matt Keeling

3rd July 2014

Published in Nature today, a new cattle herd model shows how bTB infects cattle and how to halt its spread, writes Matt Keeling. Most effective is the slaughter of entire herds with even a single TB infection detected. Culling badgers has very little impact. more...
Environment Secretary Owen Paterson faces a High Court appearance when his 'irrational' decision to hold the 2014 badger cull with no independent expert scrutiny is subjected to Judicial Review.

Badger cull High Court challenge goes ahead

The Ecologist

2nd July 2014

The Badger Trust has been granted leave for a Judicial Review of Environment Secretary Owen Paterson and Natural England over their 'irrational' decision to conduct the 2013 badger cull with no independent expert scrutiny. more...
View of the Peel Watershed. Photo: Jill Pangman.

Wild heart of the Yukon in gravest peril

Jill Pangman

3rd July 2014

Next week the indigenous peoples of the Yukon challenge their Government in the Territory's Supreme Court, writes Jill Pangman. At issue, its plans to open the Peel watershed, a vast unspoilt ecosystem rich in wildlife and cultural meaning, for industrial development. more...
These cows on the Kerry Ridgeway in Wales are subject to annual TB testing - key to halving TB incidence over 5 years. Photo: John Clift via Flickr.

Bovine TB - biosecurity works, new Defra figures show

Lesley Docksey

18th June 2014

With the 6th International Conference on Bovine TB under way today in Cardiff, Lesley Docksey reports on Defra's latest statistics. BTB in England is falling - and it's falling fastest where the strongest biosecurity measures are in place, confirming the experience of Wales and Scotland. more...

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Coal fired power station at Gelsenkirchen, Germany. Photo: Guy Gorek via Flickr.

Stop 'back door' financing for new coal power stations!

Steven Herz

11th June 2014

France, Germany and other wealthy countries have positive policies on climate change, writes Steven Herz. So why are they handing out back door financing for new coal power stations abroad via 'export credits'? Over $5 billion from EU countries since 2007 ... more...
Flame retardants are frequently found in mattresses and other soft furnishings, including those for use by children. Photo: © Copyright Aaron Moraes / Greh Fox via Flickr.

Flame retardants are the new lead - our children must be protected

Pat Thomas

13th June 2014

Flame retardant chemicals lower children's IQs, disrupt hormone function and cause a host of other health problems, writes Pat Thomas. Yet they are ubiquitous in homes and offices, even in bedding and accessories for babies and young children. more...
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.

HSI calls on farmers - 'go badger-friendly' to control bovine TB

Lesley Docksey

10th June 2014

Following new research showing that even culling a single badger from a family can cause a 'perturbation' that spreads TB, a new call has gone out on farmers to give up on culling, and 'go badger friendly' to control the disease. more...
a female Monarch Butterflyen (Danaus plexippus) laying an egg on a Mexican Milkweed (Asclepias curassavica ) at the Tyler Arboretum. Photo: © Derek Ramsey via Wikimedia.

Heavy herbicide use on GMO crops raises Monarch butterfly extinction fear

John Pleasants

10th June 2014

Thanks to herbicide use on GMO crops in the US and Canada, Monarch butterfly numbers have crashed - the milkweeds the larvae feed on now survive mainly in 'conservation reserve' land and roadsides - and there's a 5% chance the Monarch will be extinct within 100 years. more...
Our green and pleasant land deserves better than this! Photo: Matthew via Flickr.

Final fling of a government of lost opportunities

Natalie Bennett

6th June 2014

The Government has let down Britain with its repeated failures to seize the opportunities of green growth, healthy local food, better housing, environmental protection - and is instead pinning all its hopes on flawed, outmoded ideologies that betray our futures. more...
The road is up to 60 metres wide. Photo: Finer M, Pappalardo SE, Ferrarese F, De Marchi M (2014) / geoyasuni.org.

Ecuador: oil company has built 'secret' road deep into Yasuni National Park

David Hill

6th June 2014

Ecuador's state oil company PetroAmazonas has, in secret, built a road deep into the heart of the world-famous Yasuni National Park in Ecuador's Amazon rainforest, writes David Hill - violating promises and threatening uncontacted indigenous tribes. more...
An anti-Starbucks rally. Photo: Travis Forden.

Boycott Starbucks! Here's five strong reasons why

Katherine Paul and Ronnie Cummins

5th June 2014

Starbucks has positioned itself as a 'progressive' brand - but it's no such thing. It refuses to commit to fair trade coffee, organic milk, GMO-free / organic foods and snacks, and supports the mighty Grocery Manufacturers Association, lobbyist for GMOs and industrial agriculture. more...
Among potential 'stranded assets', this open pit coal mine in Indonesia Borneo. Photo: Parolan Harahap via Flickr.

China's coal burn 'down 40% by 2020'

Alex Kirby

6th June 2014

Coal consumption in China is likely to dwindle rapidly, writes Alex Kirby, leaving its own mining sector and foreign coal exporters in serious trouble. Australia and Indonesia are at greatest risk as China may soon stop importing any coal at all. more...
The bloodied corpse of badger 200, whisked away before it could be retrieved by cullers and subjected to a post-mortem that showed it had been shot in the wrong place and suffered a slow and painful death.

A night in the life of a badger sett monitor - Chris Tasker's story

Lesley Docksey

5th June 2014

NFU running police control rooms. Violent 'bounty-hunting' badger shooters in the woods at dead of night, none too bothered about the finer points of law. Confused, ill-informed police bearing prejudice against 'protestors' ... It's all a recipe for a big mess, writes Lesley Docksey. more...
A badger struggles to avoid drowning in the flooded river Saale, 2011. Photo: Margrit via Flickr.com.

Cull could put flood-struck badgers 'at risk of local extinction'

The Ecologist

2nd June 2014

Following last winter's severe flooding in SW England, the Government has refused to assess how badly badgers suffered - even though local populations could have crashed. If the cull goes ahead, badgers could be wiped out of some areas altogether. more...
Oil pipeline across Lago Agrio, in Ecuador's Amazon. Photo: Julien Gomba via Flickr.

Your investment in Chevron will never be safe!

Humberto Piaguaje, UDAPT

29th May 2014

Humberto Piaguaje traveled from Ecuador's rainforest to Texas to deliver this Open Letter from Texaco's victims to Chevron-Texaco shareholders. Chevron is refusing to pay multi-billion dollar damages awarded to those suffering from its pollution. more...
Texaco's signature, written in oil, at Lago Agrio in the Ecuadorian Amazon. Photo: Julien Gomba via Flickr.

Texas Petroleum Museum rejects 'gifts from Ecuador'

The Ecologist

29th May 2014

The Permian Basin Petroleum Museum in Texas has ejected two indigenous men from Ecuador and rejected their 'gift' of posters showing rainforest oil pollution. Chevron was holding its annual general meeting at the museum. more...
Yasuni National Park. Source: http://www.ecohustler.co.uk/.

Ecuador's tribes declare 'national mobilization' against oil and mining

David Dene

24th May 2014

Ecuador is facing an unprecedented confrontation between a 'progressive' left-leaning government and a national coalition of indigenous peoples determined to stop vast oil and mining projects taking place on their community land and villages. more...

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