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A buzzard in flight, photographed by Tambako The Jaguar. Via Flickr.com.

Buzzard 'control' licences must be refused

Martin Harper

2nd June 2014

An application has been made to kill ten buzzards to protect pheasant poults at a game shoot. With buzzards only slowly returning to the UK after decades of persecution, writes Martin Harper, this and all similar applications must be rejected. more...
The blockade of the Amazon Highway near the Belo Monte construction site. Photo: Xingu Vivo.

Brazil: Amazon Indians shot at Belo Monte dam site

Xingu Vivo / The Ecologist

30th May 2014

This week 20 Amazon Indians walked to the Belo Monte dam site to demand the company keep its promises to compensate indigenous communities. Police shot them with 'rubber bullets' and stun grenades, wounding four. Tensions are rising ... more...
The Organ Mountains of New Mexico, now designated a National Monument. Photo: Bob Wick / BLM California.

A new National Monument for New Mexico

Ted Zukosjy

31stth May 2014

The stunning landscape of the Organ Mountains in New Mexico is now permanently protected as a National Monument following a Presidential Proclamation, reports Ted Zukosjy of Earthjustice. more...
Melting away: an aerial view of the margin of Greenland's threatened ice sheet. Photo: Hannes Grobe / Alfred Wegener Institute via Wikimedia Commons.

Greenland's glaciers 'more vulnerable' to rapid melting

Tim Radford

27th May 2014

Greenland's glaciers are more vulnerable to global warming than had previously been feared, reports Tim Radford, as ice bodies are undercut by seawater. The threat of rapidly rising sea levels just went up yet another notch. more...
This iceberg in the Amundsen Sea was once part of a glacier. Photo: NASA HQ PHOTO via Flickr.

Antarctica's ice collapse threatens metres of sea level rise within decades

Dady Cherry

26th May 2014

Scientists know that if Antarctica's ice sheets and glaciers collapse, sea levels could rise 5 metres. But the idea that it will take 200 years to happen is based on a linear model, writes Dady Cherry. In fact, the process is exponential - and could take place 'within decades'. more...
Tiger skin being processed at Xia Feng. Photo: © EIA.

China's lethal wildlife trade loophole

Vicky Lee

21st May 2014

A little-known licensing scheme allows over 100 Chinese companies to trade in wildlife products like tiger skins, ivory, bear bile and musk deer glands. Vicky Lee shows how the system provides cover for the lucrative illegal wildlife trade to reach wealthy buyers. more...
The drought-stricken Chowilla floodplain in South Australia, Changing wind patterns are bringing cold and snow to Antarctica, while Australia gets hotter and drier. Photo: Gary Sauer-Thompson via Flickr.

Strong winds keep Antarctica cold - while Australia bakes

Tim Radford

16th May 2014

Rising greenhouse gas levels are causing stronger winds over the Southern Ocean. It's good news for Antarctica, writes Tim Radford, as the circumpolar winds are keeping its ice caps cold. But Australia is getting hotter and drier - and its problems will only increase. more...
In Scotland's Hebridean Isles most 'fishing communities' have long since lost all their rights to fish, and are reduced to trapping shellfish for a living. Photo: Florian Seiffert via Flickr.

Selling the silver: the enclosure of the UK's fisheries

Emma Cardwell.

7th July 2014

Fishing quotas were meant to conserve stocks and support fishing communities, writes Emma Cardwell. But they have achieved the reverse - rewarding the most rapacious fishing enterprises and leaving small scale fisherfolk with nothing. more...
English Badger, British Wildlife Centre, Newchapel, Surrey. Photo: Peter Trimming via Flickr.com.

Badger culls - who is standing up for public safety?

Lesley Docksey

14th May 2014

Senior Gloucestershire police were questioned this week about the policing of the 2013 pilot cull, writes Lesley Docksey. But the Police Commissioner never asked about the most serious problems - police bias and ignorance of the law, and culler criminality. more...
Are oil company valuations as ephemeral as the smoke rising from this oil refinery? Photo: Horia Varlan via Flickr.

Oil companies' $1.1 trillion gamble

Paul Brown

16th May 2014

Financial experts warn investors that their money is being used by oil companies for high-risk projects, reports Paul Brown, on the assumption that oil prices will go on rising, with little or no regard for climate change. $1.1 trillion could be at risk. more...
Traces of submerged lands are visible today, if you know where to look. Richerman, CC BY-SA.

Melting glaciers have drowned lands before, and will again

Vince Gaffney

12th May 2014

The North Sea's 'Dogger Bank' was once dry land, inhabited by people and herds of Pleistocene megafauna, writes Vince Gaffney. The long-lost world of Doggerland shows how melting glaciers drowned land at the end of the last ice age. And surely not for the last time ... more...
Organic farming as it used to be ... sow with piglets at Sandy Lane Farm, Oxfordshire. Photo: Sandy Lane Farm.

Organic certification - inorganic bureaucracy

Julian Rose

17th May 2014

Organic certification used to be carried out by real farmers in wellies, who knew all the tricks and could spot dodgy practice on the land at 100 paces, writes Julian Rose. Today's certifiers arrive in patent leather shoes and get no further than the office - and this is meant to be an improvement? more...

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Badger sniffing daisies. Photo: Sally Longstaff via Flickr.com.

Badger cull - police face public grilling from Commissioner

The Ecologist

9th May 2014

Days after our exposé of a policing disaster at England's 2013 badger culls, the Police Commissioner for Gloucestershire is to question the county's most senior police officers. The event will be video-streamed online. more...
The German researchers say they have found a so far unknown source of sea level rise in East Antarctica. Photo: euphro via Wikimedia Commons.

East Antarctic ice basin 'may be at risk'

Alex Kirby

8th May 2014

The East Antarctic ice sheet is thought by most scientists to be stable, reports Alex Kirby. But a German team says it has found how a large part of it could in time melt unstoppably, causing a long term 4 metre rise in global sea levels. more...
Unscrupulous cull contractors were adding badger roadkill to their bags. But it gets a lot worse than that.  Photo: Victoria Chan via Flickr.com.

Police, Guns, Action - how safe were the pilot badger culls?

Lesley Docksey

7th May 2014

In its report on last year's pilot badger culls, the Independent Expert Panel (IEP) judged that the culls failed the criteria for effectiveness and humaneness, but satisfied those for safety, writes Lesley Docksey. The facts say otherwise. more...
Fourth of July Iceberg, 2008, Twillingate, Newfoundland. Photo: Barbara Matilsky.

Vanishing ice through artists' eyes

Martin Spray

9th May 2014

This chronicle of over two centuries of melting Alpine and polar ice, seen through the works of contemporary artists, is at its best both powerful and provocative, writes Martin Spray. But he wonders - is art really such an effective force for environmental protection? more...
A Navajo Hotshot firefighter in Division A battles the West Mullan Fire in the Lolo National Forest, MT, July 2013. Photo: USDA via Flickr.com.

Let the forests burn - the ecology depends on it!

Monica L. Bond, Chad T. Hansen & Dominick A. Dellasala

12th May 2014

Forest fires are invariably portrayed as fiercely destructive environmental calamities. But for the native forests of the American West, large fires are essential to ecological renewal. Contrary to the mantras of logging companies and forest service officials, we suppress them at our peril. more...
President Barack Obama with Vice President Joe Biden. Photo: Barack Obama via Flickr.com.

Fracking weaponized - Joe Biden's Ukraine crusade

Steve Horn

25th April 2014

For the US fracking industry - and for Vice-President Joe Biden - fracking is more than just a way to bring in vast amounts of cash, writes Steve Horn. It's also a key weapon in the US's long war with Russia, as Biden made clear this week in Kiev. more...
Chernobyl Zone 75, Pripyat, Ukraine. Photo: kvitlauk via Flickr.com.

Chernobyl - the biting wind, the silent scream

Barys Piatrovich

26th April 2014

Barys Piatrovich recalls the tension of unknowing during the days that followed the Chernobyl disaster. Today, barely any of the evacuees are still alive. Dispersed throughout the country, they died alone and unnoticed, statistically insignificant. more...
The fragile and rapidly changing Arctic is home to large reservoirs of methane, a potent greenhouse gas. Photo: NASA Earth Observatory.

We must cool the Arctic before it's too late

Matthew Worsdale

29th April 2014

The decline of Arctic sea ice demands a response, writes Matthew Worsdale. As Arctic temperatures rise, so does the danger of huge eruptions of methane - a powerful greenhouse gas - that will tip the climate into 'hot'. The only solution is geo-engineering. more...
The bloodied deck of the Nisshin Maru, stained from the butchering of a whale. Photo: Tim Watters / Sea Shepherd Australia.

Japan's whaling - the end is nigh

Elizabeth Claire Alberts

24th April 2014

Following the ruling by the International Court of Justice that Japan's whaling in the Antarctic is illegal, Elizabeth Claire Alberts examines the legal, financial and practical challenges of a continued whaling program - with some help from Sea Shepherd's Captain Paul Watson. more...
These trees may not last much longer. View of Mount Hood across a frozen Lake Trillium, Mount Hood National Forest. Photo: Karl Johnson via Flickr.com.

The howl of the wolf will not be silenced

Stephen Quirk & Alexander Reid Ross

17th April 2014

The US Forest Service is developing a new armory of aggressive and often illegal tactics to push through loss-making timber sales, as it brands forest defenders as 'eco-terrorists'. Time to dig in for the trees - and the wolves. more...
Where this Renault Dauphine electric car led in 1975, hundreds of thousands are now following every year. Auto World Museum, Fulton, Missouri. Photo: JeromeG111 via Flickr.com.

Electric car numbers double in one year

The Ecologist

15th April 2014

There are now more than 400,000 electric cars on the world's roads - twice as many as a year ago, and on current trends there will be a million by 2016. Leading the market are the USA, Japan and China - while Europe trails behind. more...
North Atlantic Right whale three miles off Ponte Vedra Beach, FL on February 21, 2013. Photo: Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission via Flickr.com.

Lawsuit demands 50,000 square mile Atlantic whale sanctuary

The Ecologist

11th April 2014

The US Fisheries Service has repeatedly failed to give highly endangered Right whales adequate protection. Now wildlife groups are suing the Agency to demand a more than tenfold expansion of 'critical habitat' to protect the species along the US's Atlantic coast. more...
Liberate Tate's Parts Per Million protest at Tate Britain, 23rd November 2013. Photo: Martin LeSanto-Smith.

Tate - come clean about BP sponsorship!

Kevin Smith

9th April 2014

BP and other fossil fuel companies love to sponsor high art to preserve their 'public licence to operate', writes Kevin Smith. But why is Tate so keen to take the relatively trivial sums on offer. And why the unbending information blackout? more...

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