The Ecologist

 
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Campaigning

Exposing babarism in the name of ‘Fashion'

Laura Briggs

4th August, 2017

In 2016 the UK imported £26 million worth of fur, showing that the industry has gone global. Only by exposing the level of cruelty and showing people what lies behind the fashion will change ever come about writes LAURA BRIGGS more...

Veteran Cumbria anti-nuclear activists recognised with Nuclear-Free Future Award

Linda Pentz Gunter

31st July, 2017

Theresa May's Tory government pushes forward with its nuclear white elephants. But one Cumbria couple persist in exposing the dangers of new nukes and old. Now Martin Forwood and Janine Allis-Smith of Cumbrians Opposed to a Radioactive Environment have won the 2017 Nuclear-Free Future Award, reports LINDA PENTZ GUNTER more...

Eradicating invasive species is essential for island conservation

Laura Briggs

20th July 2017

The South Georgia Heritage Trust and the University of Dundee hosted 300 delegates from 43 countries to share a global picture of the world’s islands where ecosystems can hang in the balance, reports LAURA BRIGGS more...

Smart meter radiation and health - why are we neglecting non-toxic alternatives?

Lynne Wycherley

6th June 2017

Display from a BG smart meter. Just too bad about all the electromagnetic smog it generates. Photo: athriftymrs.com via Flickr (CC BY-SA). With growing evidence of harm to physical and mental health caused by continuous pulsed em radiation from 'smart' electricity meters, Lynne Wycherley asks: have we underestimated risks to heart function and the nervous system? And of interference with embedded medical devices, such as cardiac pacemakers? It's time to switch to over-wire or fibre communications to bring the 'smart green grid' of the future to electrosmog-free reality. more...

Poland's primeval forest is under serious attack

Nick Meynen

2nd June, 2017

Polish activists have this week chained themselves up to machines used to cut a 9000-year-old forest in a bid to stop the destruction of trees for what is clearly commercial gain. NICK MEYNEN reports more...

Sea Shepherd helps arrest 'sustainable' shrimp trawler for illegal fishing in Liberian waters

Peter Hammarstedt / Sea Shepherd

26th May 2017

Liberian Coast Guard prepares to board the Star Shrimper XXV. Photo: Alejandra Gimeno / Sea Shepherd Global. A 'Friend of the Sea' Dutch-owned trawler certified to supply 'sustainably caught' shrimp to the US and EU was arrested in Liberia after operating in an an area reserved for artisanal fishers, writes Peter Hammarstedt. The vessel, which had no licence and lacked the turtle excluders required by law, was discovered by the crew of Sea Shepherd's 'Bob Barker' in a joint mission with the Liberian Coast Guard to clamp down on rampant illegal fishing. more...

Only global protest can secure land rights and justice for Brazil's Guarani people

Lewis Evans

24th May 2017

Guarani tribal leader and activist Ladio Veron speaking outside the Brazilian Embassy in London, in an action replicated across the globe. Photo: still from Survival video. On the one side, the Guarani people and the entire panoply of international and Brazilian law asserting the rights of indigenous peoples to their lives, lands, and way of life. Against them, the entrenched economic and political power of farmers, ranchers, loggers and others exploiting the wealth of the Guarani's soils, forests and waters. Right now the power of money is winning every time. Only with international pressure can the Guarani emerge victorious. more...

Resting as resistance: when superhuman aims and human limitations collide

Janey Stephenson

16th May 2017

Photo: Marcin Cajzer via Flickr (CC BY). We are not able to fight everything, and even when we do fight, we are not able to win every time, writes Janey Stephenson. Some things are bigger than us. That is not our fault. Contrary to capitalist logic, that does not make us flawed or unproductive. Within our movements, it does not make us lazy or weak or failures. It makes us human. There is a time to rest. more...

Development Threat to Welsh National Parks

Jan Goodey

11th May, 2017


There's a shift occurring in the stewardship of the UK's National Parks - a move towards legislating for greater freedom to plunder the Parks' natural resources for financial gain with conservation of natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage taking a back seat. JAN GOODEY reports on the looming threat to the National Parks in Wales
more...

Smart meters and cell damage from pulsed em radiation - our health at risk?

Lynne Wycherley

11th April 2017

Image: Environmental Illness Network (CC BY-NC-ND). 'Smart meters' looked like a great idea, writes Lynne Wycherley, giving us more control over our energy use. The downside? They emit as many as 14,000 short bursts of intense microwave radiation a day, disrupting cellular electrochemistry and causing health symptoms from migraine to tinnitus, insomnia, dizziness, anxiety, chest pain, palpitations and memory loss. Now a growing number of 'electro-sensitives' have had enough! more...

No Drax! There's nothing 'sustainable' about big biomass

Frances Howe

10th April 2017

The four eastern cooling towers at the Drax biomass and coal-fired power station in North Yorkshire. Photo: Jonathan Brennan via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND). The Drax power station in Yorkshire is the UK's biggest CO2 emitter, burns more wood each year than the entire UK timber harvest, and is a major importer of coal from strife-stricken regions of Colombia, writes Frances Howe. This Thursday campaigners will target the company's AGM to highlight its impacts on forests, biodiversity, climate and communities, in the face of Drax's PR offensive to make biomass appear 'sustainable'. more...

Up in smoke: the fight to block Gloucestershire's unwanted incinerator

Dan Hinge

24th April 2017

Scale representation of the incinerator in situ, near Junction 12 of the M5, providing a highly dubious 'welcome to Gloucester', adjacent to the AONB. Image: GlosVAIN. Activists in Gloucestershire are battling to block the construction of a massive incinerator that they see as a blight on the landscape, costly, polluting, wasteful and undermining recycling, writes Dan Hinge. Now the fight, backed by superstar actor Jeremy Irons, just entered a new phase after a tribunal forced the County Council to reveal essential details of the contract it had signed. more...

Grow for Syria - one woman's mission to make a difference

Laura Briggs

7th April, 2017

Grow for Syria is a new UK-based campaign bringing gardeners across the South West together to fundraise for Syrian refugees by selling plants, seeds and other garden-related items. LAURA BRIGGS explains how you can get involved more...

Deadly toll of fossil fuel pollution: the old economy versus planet and people

Pete Dolack / Systemic Disorder

6th April 2017

The Grangemouth oil refinery in Scotland, UK. Photo: Graeme Maclean via Flickr (CC BY). Pollution caused by burning fossil fuels are already causing the premature deaths of 200,000 people a year - in the US alone, writes Pete Dolack. Add up the figures worldwide and it comes to many millions. And that's before we even count the catastrophic long term impacts of global warming. The US response: to loosen anti-pollution regulation and encourage increased oil, coal and gas production. more...

Tall tales and tailings - the truth about Rio Tinto's rare earth mine in Madagascar

Yvonne Orengo

3rd April 2017

Aerial view of Rio Tinto's QMM mine in Madagascar. Photo: via Andrew Lees Trust. Rio Tinto's QMM mine in Madagascar was meant to be an exemplar of 'corporate social responsibility' and environmental best practice. But the reality experienced by local communities is different, writes Yvonne Orengo, with uncompensated land seizures, food insecurity, deforestation and social deprivation. New concerns are emerging about the infringement of legal buffer zones and radiation exposure. Rio Tinto must be held responsible for its actions! more...

Hidden GMOs in our daily food? Let's get UK chefs talking, and doing!

Pat Thomas

31st March 2017

Mmm ... but did you know the chips could be fried in oil from GMO corn or soya, and that the steak almost certainly came from an animal fattened up on GMO feed? Photo: Henry Burrows via Flickr (CC BY-SA). Increasing quantities of 'hidden GMOs' are finding their way into our diet, writes Pat Thomas. They are coming mainly in US imports for supermarkets and caterers, and in animal feeds used for meat, dairy and egg production. It's time for chefs, pubs, takeaways and restaurants to take responsibility for the food chains that supply them - labelling the GMOs in their meals, and better still, cutting them out. more...

Is Natural England granting unlawful badger cull licences to farmers with poor biosecurity?

Anna Dale

29th March 2017

English badger at sunset near Canterbury, Kent. Let's all blame him for farmers' poor biosecurity! Photo: Ian Blacker via Flickr (CC BY-ND). Below-par farm biosecurity should block farmers from participating in England's badger culls, writes Anna Dale. But a large body of evidence of poor and negligent biosecurity by farmers suggests that Natural England, the government's official regulator, is turning a blind eye to this strict requirement - and undermining the purpose of the cull. more...

Support Woodland Trust's ‘Save Our Ancients' campaign to save UK's ancient woodland

Laura Briggs

20th March 2017

There's welcome news for campaigners lobbying for the protection of Britain's ancient woodland. LAURA BRIGGS reports more...

Environmental vandalism? Campaigners regroup to stop the Great Downland Sell-Off

Jan Goodey

15th March, 2017

Campaigners up and down the country are trying to stop public access land from going under the hammer as UK councils seek ways to plug the Government funding gap. JAN GOODEY reports more...

Sixteen Big Ideas to change the world and create a better future

Mike Childs

17th March 2017

The future is hard to foretell. So instead, why not create the future you want? Photo: Aurora Borealis in Iceland by Victor Montol via Flickr (CC BY) with Kirkjufell Mountain and Kirkjufellsfoss waterfall. In the fight for a better, cleaner, more just and sustainable world, it's not enough just to oppose all all the 'bads' that crowd in from all sides, writes Mike Childs. We also have to build our own vision of the future, and map out the changes we must make to get there. And that's what Friends of the Earth is setting out to do in its transformational 'Big Ideas Change the World' project. more...

Pity the poor hounds! Bovine TB, foxhounds and the biosecurity black hole

Lesley Docksey

15th March 2017

Boxing Day Hunt and Hounds in Chiddingstone, Kent, England. Photo: Kentish Plumber via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND). The 25 TB-infected hounds of the Kimblewick hunt, all put down, remind us that the lot of hunting dogs is not a happy one, writes Lesley Docksey. Unloved and at constant risk of slaughter, they are prone to a host of diseases, from bovine TB to brucellosis, neospora and botulism, which they can pass on to farm stock, humans and other dogs. They deserve better! more...

Supermarkets: 'Feed me the Truth' about GMOs in our food chain!

Liz O'Neill / GM Freeze

7th March 2017

If it's not organic, milk in UK supermarkets is almost all from cattle fed GMOs in their feed. Photo: Echoplex7 via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND). UK supermarkets led the world in saying 'no!' to GM foods and ingredients, writes Liz O'Neill. But they faltered on GM feeds for pigs, cattle, poultry and fish, with GM soy and corn dominating the UK's non-organic market. Now campaigners are putting the pressure on supermarkets to make their entire supply chains GMO-free for the sake of animal, human and ecological health. more...

Crustacean Compassion campaigns for welfare rights for lobsters & crabs

Laura Briggs

6th March, 2017

If the thought of dropping a live lobster into a pan of boiling water horrifies you, then you're in good company including that of a new campaigning group that wants lobsters to be given the same animal welfare rights as other creatures. LAURA BRIGGS reports more...

The Hunting Act 12 years on - time to crack down on the fox-killing criminals!

Jordi Casamitjana / League Against Cruel Sports

21st February 2017

A legal fox kill before the 1994 ban. But in truth, little has changed since. Photo: League Against Cruel Sports. Since February 18, 2005 roughly 200,000 illegal hunting events undertaken by registered hunts may have taken place in the UK, writes Jordi Casamitjana. By engaging in fictitious 'trail hunting', they can chase foxes as before, and when they are killed, well, it was all a shocking 'accident'. It's high time to strengthen the law to ensure the spirit in which it was passed is fulfilled. more...

Reaching hearts and minds: the power of nonviolent action unleashed

Robert J. Burrowes

15th February 2017

22,000 shoes in Place de la Republique - Climate of Peace #climat2paix, 29th November 2015, at #COP21 - placed to represent the hundreds of thousands of people denied freedom of speech and freedom of assembly in the March for the Climate. Photo: Takver vi Nonviolent activism is an incredibly powerful means of transforming the world, writes Robert J. Burrowes. But to harness that power, we must understand that it works by inspiring others to join in a just and noble cause, while communicating the actions they can take in their own lives. Its essential modes are thus political and psychological - and victory can result from apparent failure. 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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