The Ecologist

 
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Campaigning

Rosia Montana: how Romanians united to save a mountain village from mining apocalypse

Alexandru Predoiu / WNV

11th January 2017

Workshop at the 2013 FanFest at Rosia Montana, which attracted thousands to the small village and stimulated a new round of activism to defeat the gold mine. Photo: Jan Slangen via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA). Last week's decision by the Romanian government to seek UNESCO World Heritage status for Rosia Montana, a historic Carpathian mountain village under threat of gold mining, is a massive victory for campaigners after a hard 15-year struggle, writes Alexandru Predoiu - one that has united farmers, city-dwellers and new-age protestors against cultural and ecological destruction. more...

UK's 'development for profit' private equity arm set to grab £6 billion of aid funds

Global Justice Now

10th January 2017

CDC's development model in microcosm? Girl begging outside McDonalds outlet, India. Photo: Jon Ardern via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA). A bill to quadruple the UK's aid funding to a profit-driven 'private equity' company owned by the government comes before MPs today for its third reading, writes Global Justice Now. Trouble is the investments do little or nothing for the poor, and instead entrench corporate power in health, education and infrastructure. Parliament should seize this last chance to reject the new law. more...

China must take responsibility for its citizens' wildlife crimes in Africa

Namibian Chamber of Environment

6th January 2017

Endangered by the illegal trade in rhino horn, much of which is exported to China in a trade largely operated by Chinese citizens: White Rhino at Okaukuejo, Oshikoto, Namibia. Photo: Paolo Lucciola via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA). Chinese citizens are responsible for much of the wildlife crime taking place in Namibia, inflicting immense damage to the country's environment, and undermining community based conservation, writes the Namibian Chamber of Environment in this Open Letter to China's Ambassador Xin Shunkang. China must act to stop its citizens' criminal activities, and invest in making good the damage caused. more...

EPA's systemic bias in hearings over glyphosate and cancer

Carey Gillam

19th December 2016

The EPA building in Washington DC. Photo: Mark Ordonez via Flickr (CC BY). The US Environmental Protection Agency was on the defensive last week in its hearings to determine whether glyphosate, the word's number one herbicide, causes cancer, writes Carey Gillam, as it stood accused of giving preferential treatment to industry representatives, excluding evidence of cancer links, and refusing testimony from a world expert epidemiologist. more...

The 'Genetics' letter, the Euratom suicide clause, and the death of the nuclear industry

Chris Busby

15th December 2016

A closeup of the fireball and mushroom cloud from the Upshot-Knothole Grable atomic bomb test in Nevada, 25th May 1953. The 1950's and '60's bomb tests, we can now calculate, caused uncounted millions of cancer deaths. Photo: Federal Government of the Uni The Lifetime Study of Japanese A-bomb survivors is a monumental fraud which deliberately excludes controls for being 'too healthy', writes Chris Busby. Put them back in, and you find that low levels of radiation cause over 100 times more cancer than they are 'meant' to, creating a silent global massacre of the innocent. Under the Euratom treaty, the entire nuclear industry must now be 'rejustified'. more...

Malaysia: the Murut struggle against palm oil, for land and life

Sophie Chao

12th December 2016

Bigor longhouse with land cleared for oil palm in the background. Photo: Sophie Chao. Supported by state and national governments, palm oil plantations are advancing over the rainforest hills of Sabah, Malaysia, writes Sophie Chao. In their way: the indigenous Murut of Bigor, whose culture, livelihood and very lives are under threat as forests and farms fall to chainsaws and bulldozers, enriching loggers and distant investors beyond the dreams of avarice. more...

Cuadrilla - drop your £55,000 claim against Lancashire fracking 'Nana'!

Oliver Tickell

8th December 2016

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

No to Bradwell's 'secret' radioactive discharges to the sea

Chris Busby

2nd December 2016

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

In the age of Trump, Big Art must cut off Big Oil!

Chris Garrard

29th November 2016

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

Stopping Europe's nuclear industry in its tracks: here's how

Christopher Busby

28th November 2016

To stop any more of these, we must attack the scientific deception that underlies the industry. Nuclear power station, Wylfa, Wales. Photo: Jeremy WILLIAMS via Flickr (CC BY-NC). Article 6 of the Euratom Treaty provides for nuclear industry practices to be rejustified in the light of new scientific evidence of harm to health, writes Chris Busby. We now have that evidence, in particular that radiation exposure even at very low levels causes severe and heritable genetic damage to people and entire families. Now, we must use the law to protect our health from radiation! more...

Switch the Stick - why we need to stop buying plastic cotton buds

Laura Briggs

23rd November, 2016

A new campaign is persuading the UK's top retailers to switch from plastic to paper cotton buds. LAURA BRIGGS reports more...

Don Sahong Dam - disaster in the making that must be halted!

Save the Mekong Coalition

17th November 2016

A fisher going to set his fishing gear at rapids at Don Sahong on the Mekong River. Photo: International Rivers via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA). The construction of the Don Sahong Dam in Laos PDR must be halted until full information on the project's impacts - in particular the fate of millions of fish that migrate each year through the Hou Sahong channel now being dammed - has been published, writes the Save the Mekong Coalition in this open letter sent today to the project developers. more...

Controlling corporate power: advance of a people-centred UN human rights treaty

Amelia Collins

1st November 2016

Delegates from Mozambique in Geneva last week celebrating their achievements in progressing the new human rights treaty. Photo: Victor Barro / FOEI. People power was at the forefront of UN talks on an global treaty for transnational corporations and human rights last week in Geneva, writes Amelia Collins. The fact that so many countries - led by South Africa and Ecuador - voiced their unequivocal support for legally binding rules, sets exactly the right tone for an ambitious and far-reaching negotiation. more...

Beast of Beckermet against the nuclear menace? a Lakeland story for All Hallow's Eve

Marianne Birkby

31st October 2016

Breath of a Woodwose. Original drawing by Bill Rogers via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND). As the nuclear juggernaut drives the destruction of the Cumbria coast at Sellafield with nuclear waste dumps, boreholes, dredged-out rivers and a massive new nuclear power station, Marianne Birkby recalls ancient legends of the Woodwose, the Green Man, and the Beast of Beckermet. Can these forces of untamed nature be called upon to combat the growing nuclear menace? more...

#AxeDrax: campaigners unite for climate justice against coal and biofueled deforestation

Almuth Ernsting

18th October 2016

The Drax coal and biomass fired power station in North Yorkshire, one the UK's biggest point source emitters of greenhouse gases. Photo: Andrew Davidson via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND). The Drax power station in North Yorkshire is among Britain's greatest greenhouse gas emitters, writes Almuth Ernsting. Not only is it burning some 6 million tonnes of coal every year, it is also burning its way through forests in the USA and other countries as it converts to biomass-fired units, rewarded by £1.3 million a day in subsidies. Join the #AxeDrax protest this weekend! more...

Responsible advertisers must boycott climate-sceptic Mail, Sun, Times, Telegraph, Express

Donnachadh McCarthy

19th September 2016

Front page of the Daily Wail - a project of the  Advertising Action on Climate Project (AACP). Photo: AACP. A handful of right wing media billionnaires have been using their newspapers as propaganda rags to attack climate science and oppose climate action, writes Donnachadh McCarthy. Yet even 'climate leader' companies like M&S are fuelling their profits by advertising with them. Now a new #Deadvertisment campaign is demanding them to stop, right now. more...

Corporations rule the world? Not quite. But we must stop them while we still can!

Aisha Dodwell / Global Justice Now

13th September 2016

G4S provides security systems for prisons which hold Palestinian political prisoners from occupied Palestinian territory inside Israel, in contravention of Article 76 of the Fourth Geneva Convention. Photo: Anti-G4S demo in London, June 2016 by Darren Joh Gigantic global corporations are seizing ever more power, writes Aisha Dodwell, as they reshape the world to serve their quest for profit: corrupting politicians, subverting governments, and breaking international law on labour, environment and human rights with impunity. We need a new UN Treaty to force corporations to act within international law - wherever they may be. more...

Why Japan? The racism of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings

Linda Pentz Gunter

17th August 2016

How the US saw the Japanese people in 1942. Photo: James Vaughan via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA). As we remember the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki this month 71 years ago, we have largely forgotten the racist propaganda that made it possible, writes LINDA PENZ GUNTER. We have likewise sanitised history to exclude the voices of African Americans who loudly protested the use of nuclear weapons, connecting them to American colonialism abroad and racism at home. more...

New Whale Heritage Sites (WHS) signal a new era in responsible whale watching

DYLAN WALKER

16th August, 2016



As whale watching grows in popularity, so too do concerns about marine habitats and the conservation of whales, dolphins and porpoises. DYLAN WALKER of the World Cetacean Alliance explains why we must all take responsibility for ethical interactions with these intriguing animals
more...

Changing the world with creative non-violence

Rex Weyler

12th August 2016

The Greenpeace ship James Bay was widely used in Greenpeace's iconic 'Save the Whale' campaign of the mid-1970s to obstruct the activities of killer boats intent on taking the last great whales. Photo: still from 'How to Change the World' (film by Greenpe The Green movement is above all about leading social change, writes Greenpeace co-founder Rex Weyler. While facts and arguments are important, the main task is to replace mainstream justifications of the status quo with new, compelling narratives of a higher moral order. And the most powerful means of achieving this is by symbolic, non-violent direct action. more...

Pro-GMO propaganda at Cornell University - a student fights back

Robert Schooler

4th August 2016

The Gates Foundation-funded 'Gates Hall' at Cornell University. Photo: Robert Gray / At-Hand Guides via Flickr (CC BY). Cornell student Robert Schooler was shocked at the pro-GMO propaganda emanating from Cornell University and it's Gates-funded 'Alliance for Science'. But rather than just complain about it, he decided to fight back - with his popular 'GMOWTF' website and an important lecture series this fall by GMO experts on the Cornell campus - the ones that Cornell has been ignoring for years. more...

Not just cruel to pigs - farmers are the other victims of intensive animal farming

Tracy Worcester

29th July 2016

Inside the pig farm. Photo: Farms Not Factories. Free range pig campaigner Tracy Worcester had a surprise encounter after filming horrific conditions in an intensive UK pig farm. She met the elderly farmer who was cutting corners to stay in business under cut-throat pressure from supermarkets and global agribusiness - only to find he shared all her concerns. The answer is for shoppers to buy only high-welfare meat. more...

How the Remainers got it so wrong: the lessons of climate change campaigning

George Marshall

26th July 2016

'Leave' banner in Epping, South of London, UK, 19th June 2016. Photo: diamond geezer via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND). Key to the Leave campaign's success was its focus on 'core values' like patriotism, independence and cultural purity, writes George Marshall, summed up in simple memes like 'defending our borders'. The Remainers' reliance on elite and expert opinion was hopelessly flat-footed - and went against everything climate campaigners have learned about winning over public opinion. more...

New film ‘SWINE' exposes the secret life of factory farms and the rise in antibiotic resistance in farmed animals

Ecologist reporters

8th July, 2016

Today (Friday, 8th July) the charity Viva! will debut its new short thriller/documentary, film SWINE which exposes the dirty secrets of factory farming in UK - including the growing health risks to humans from MRSA Superbugs more...

It feels like the tragedy of a generation, but we need to gear up not give up

Alex Scrivener

28th June 2016

Photo: threefishsleeping via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND). We have a serious responsibility to fight the more unsavoury symptoms of Brexit, writes Alex Scrivener - making the case for free movement for people, defending the regulations that protect our environment and workers' rights, resisting imperialism abroad and racism on our streets. more...

Campaigning: The Basics

TAKE ACTION to end cosmetic testing on animals

Mark Briggs

24th April, 2012

TAKE ACTION to end animal testing on cosmetics Lush Cosmetics have teamed up with the Humane Society International to launch a campaign to ensure long-awaited proposals banning products tested on animals outside the EU are fully enforced more...

CAMPAIGN HERO: Martín von Hildebrand on indigenous rights in the Colombian Amazon

Mark Briggs

13th April. 2012

Martín von Hildebrand, founding Director of the Fundación Gaia Amazonzas The veteran campaigner talks to the Ecologist about the ongoing struggle to secure indigenous land rights and how he successfully took the Colombian government to court more...

Cleaner Air, Water, Land

CAMPAIGN HERO: Sharon Johnson, Trees for Cities

Ecologist

27th January, 2012

Sharon Johnson, Trees for Cities It is estimated that by 2030, 92 per cent of Britons will live in cities. The CEO of charity Trees for Cities on why its so important but difficult to plant trees in our streets more...

CAMPAIGN HERO: Bongani Mthembu of South Durban Community Environmental Alliance

Hannah Corr

26th October, 2011

Bongani Mthembu Bongani Mthembu talks to the Ecologist about the struggles and successes in achieving environmental justice in South Africa’s townships more...

Climate Change and Energy

TAKE ACTION to help end government subsidies for dirty energy

Grace Philip

25th May, 2012

350.org Global grassroots movement, 350.org is gathering support to persuade world leaders to stop subsidising fossil fuels at the Rio Earth Summit more...

TAKE ACTION to start a British clean energy revolution

Mark Briggs

11th May, 2012

Offshore wind turbines Friends of the Earth are calling on Prime Minister David Cameron, and Energy Secretary Ed Davey to wean the UK off fossil fuels and create a 'Clean British Energy Revolution' more...

Culture Change

Why the best world-changing ideas begin in your neighbourhood

John-Paul Flintoff

22nd May, 2012

Your ideas for changing the world may be desperately important. But if you can't find a way to engage the interests of the people around you they may never take off, argues John-Paul Flintoff more...

A midwife's manifesta on how to have a fearless birth

Laura Sevier

4th May, 2012

Birth Matters by Ina May Gaskin Birth Matters, a new book by pioneering midwife Ina May Gaskin aims to empower women to gain control over their bodies in order to have the kind of birth they want more...

Food and Gardening

TAKE ACTION to stop supermarkets abusing their buyer power!

Ecologist

30th May, 2012

Top Banana 2 If you have bought bananas or pineapples in a supermarket recently did you know that many of the workers that plant, pack and grow them live in poverty? more...

Ireland's 'Grow it Yourself' self-help food growing community coming to the UK

Rebecca Campbell

16th May, 2012

Garden Organic's 'I don't dig peat' campaign Grow It Yourself is a popular community organisation with a vision of bringing people together in a sustainable and healthier way through organic food growing. Now it has plans to launch further afield in the UK more...

Schools

Child's Play: How Children Learn

Phoebe Doyle

17th July, 2012

A child plays in an empty box. They need to play; we buy them toys. But education writer Phoebe Doyle thinks you might just be wasting your money, and your children’s time more...

The Secret Garden nursery: a unique daycare where children spend all day outdoors

Phoebe Doyle

26th July, 2011

Outdoor nurseries When the classroom is the outdoors the possibilities are endless. Phoebe Doyle explores the practicalities, the realities and the huge potentials of the outdoor nursery concept more...

Transport

Campaign For Better Transport: how to reduce the need to travel

Richard Bourn

13th December, 2011

Exhaust pollution from a car The National Planning Policy Framework will sideline smart growth in favour of out-of-town sprawl - rolling back decades of town centred development. Now campaigners have launched a toolkit to reduce travel demand within local transport plans more...

CAMPAIGN HERO: Joss Garman of Plane Stupid

Matilda Lee

25th January, 2011

Joss Garman Veteran campaigner and former Ecologist contributor Joss Garman talks to us about past campaigning successes - and why a Green Investment Bank should be a top priority for the Coalition Government more...

Waste and Recycling

Collaborative Consumption: Tool Sharing

by Samir Jeraj

September 27th, 2012

Collaborative consumption is the next step on from Freecycle and swapshops more...

CAMPAIGN HERO: Shlomo Dowen, UK Without Incineration Network

Matilda Lee

5th April, 2011

Shlomo Dowen, UK Without Incineration Network The head of the UK's grassroots anti-incineration network on working towards a zero waste economy, encouraging community engagement and avoiding 'defeatist' language more...

Wildlife

Six reasons to become an urban beekeeper

Zion Lights

19th April, 2012

Bees Urban beekeeping will help boost the UK's declining bee population. Here are six reasons to get involved more...

TAKE ACTION: Support Friends of the Earth's National Bee Action Plan

Mark Briggs

11th April, 2012

Honey bees In China, pear trees have had to be pollinated by hand after bees were wiped out by industrial farming. Now FOE have launched a petition to get the UK government to help halt the decline in Britain's own bee population more...

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