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Friday, 27 October

00:15

Unseasonably cold temperatures for Midwest and Plains, powerful storm for the Northeast "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

A strong cold front in the northern states will usher unseasonably cold temperatures into the Plains and Midwest Thursday into Friday, October 27, 2017, NWS warns. Frost Advisories, Freeze Warnings, and even some Hard Freeze Warnings are in effect. This front will...... Read more

Agroforestry: An increasingly popular solution for a hot, hungry world "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

At first glance Cameroons western regions seem lush, but a closer look shows a land degraded by overgrazing, unsustainable cropping practices, deforestation of vegetation for firewood, and uncontrolled bush fires. Still, some plots teem with biodiversity: coffee grows under the shade of banana trees, while nearby there are African plum trees (known locally as safou), cola, oranges and timber trees like mahogany. To the untrained eye this might appear to be natural forest, but is in fact the fruit of agroforestry the growing of trees with crops. Typical agroforest in the North West Region of Cameroon with plantains and indigenous fruits and timber trees. Photo by Ebenezar Asaah Its mimicking what you would find in a typical forest, because you find at least three distinguished structures of diverse species which are all growing in an optimum manner, said agroforestry and food security expert Ebenezar Asaah, a Cameroonian scientist who managed the Agricultural and Tree Products Program for the western highlands of Cameroon between 2007 and 2009. From a rural farmers perspective, he explains, the strength of agroforestry is that different plants supply different products at different times of the year, providing an extra source of income when the farmers expenses are high, plus food and medicine, among other goods. Although it is also found in the U.S., Europe, and Australia, agroforestry is predominantly practiced in the tropics and sub-tropics. Here, conventional high-input modern agriculture often fails to deliver food security and sustainability, and people are often in need of income

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Thursday, 26 October

21:38

Burning down the house: Myanmars destructive charcoal trade "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

BHAMO, Myanmar A trader turns off his trucks engine at yet another checkpoint and, again, the soldiers ask him for cash. His truck is filled with charcoal from Myanmar, destined for factories in Chinas mountainous southwest province of Yunnan. The charcoal will be fed into furnaces to produce silicon metal, a material so versatile it is used to manufacture everything from metal alloys to silicon chips and solar panels. Despite the cross-border charcoal trade being illegal, the practice contributes greatly to the livelihoods of modest farmers and traders in Myanmars riverside villages. But every year, about 14,000 soccer fields of forests go up in flames to feed the smelters, while corrupt officials, especially in the military, collect bribes worth $1.2 million a year, and possibly over $10 million. A nearly year-long investigation by Mongabay documents for the first time the routes used in this trade as well as its benefits and pitfalls. Locals remove charcoal from an earth kiln near Katha, Myanmar. This kiln takes seven days to produce 130 bags of charcoal. Myo Htun, who owns the charcoal, cut 100 tree stumps to fill this kiln. Photo by Nathan Siegel for Mongabay We know that it causes deforestation, she said. She added they also know problems will arise once all the trees are cut down. It will become hotter. There will be climate change. Its not all bad, though. After cutting down trees for charcoal production, some people plant trees using seeds provided by the government, she said.

Supporting conservation by playing a game? Seriously? (commentary) "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Can you answer important questions about conservation by playing a game? Yes, and it works. In August, ForDev, the research team I lead, was invited by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) Congo Basin Office to facilitate a workshop of their Regional Working Group on High Conservation Values. FSCs goal was to define regional indicators for the management of Intact Forest Landscapes (IFLs) within certified forest concessions. How would the core zone be defined? What kind of management would be applied? How would this take into account the local communities? These are just some of the questions the Regional Working Group had to answer. We combined the MineSet role-playing game with facilitation techniques to help members of the Working Group understand each other, integrate research outputs in their discussions, and support the decision-making process. Members of the Regional working group discussing strategies in the MineSet game. Local populations (in yellow) are now living inside the concessions, and the managers need to consider this in their future strategies. Photo: T. Cornioley, 2017. Why IFL matters An Intact Forest Landscape (IFL) is defined as a territory within todays global extent of forest cover which contains forest and non-forest ecosystems minimally influenced by human economic activity, with an area of at least 500 km2 (50,000 ha) and a minimal width of 10 km (measured as the diameter of a circle that is entirely inscribed within the boundaries of the territory). www.intactforests.org/concept.html The above definition stems from the work of Peter Potapov, a

20:05

Another adjustocene moment cooling the oceans in the distant past makes the present temperatue unparalleled "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

From ECOLE POLYTECHNIQUE FDRALE DE LAUSANNE and the adjusting the past department: The oceans were colder than we thought A team of EPFL and European researchers has discovered a flaw in the way past ocean temperatures have been estimated up to now. Their findings could mean that the current period of climate change is unparalleled over

20:01

Cat Was Jealous Of Dog Siblings' Adventures So He Asked To Join Too "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Pistachio is a cat who loves going on adventures. Not long after he came to live with his mom, Kirrily Hargreaves, in New South Wales, Australia, Pistachio started dropping hints that he wanted to explore the outdoors.

Pistachio always hated being left out, and was always waiting at the door when the dogs came home from walks or the beach, Hargreaves told The Dodo. One day he broke out of the house, jumped off the balcony and into the backyard just to eat some grass. He has never been one to follow the rules.

Credit: Kirrily Hargreaves

Before being adopted by Hargreaves in 2014, Pistachio was a stray kitten living on the streets of Sydney. Someone picked him up and dropped him at a local shelter, where he got a bad case of cat flu. Thankfully, a rescue group pulled Pistachio from the shelter and nursed him back to health, although he continues to have respiratory issues, Hargreaves explained.

Credit: Kirrily Hargreaves

But Pistachio has never let health problems stop him from doing anything. The first time Hargreaves took him to the beach, Pistachio got busy exploring.

I had all the dogs packed into the car and thought there was no reason he should miss out on all the fun this time, so I attached a lead to his collar and bundled him into the car, Hargreaves said.

Credit: Kirrily Hargreaves

When we arrived, he leaped out of the car with all the dogs, and followed them down to the sand ready to prove himself, she added. He spent his first adventure exploring rocks, digging in the sand and chasing after the dogs.
...

19:42

Severe hailstorm hits Formosa, Argentina, more than 1 000 buildings damaged "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

An intense hailstorm swept through the municipality of Formosa in northern Argentina late Wednesday afternoon, October 25, 2017, causing severe damage. More than 1 000 buildings were damaged as well as numerous trees and cars after the storm dumped hailstones up to...... Read more

Lemur species losing favorite food to climate change, new study says "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Bamboo-eating lemurs in Madagascar could be slowly starving as a changing climate slashes the availability of their favorite part of the plant, a new study shows. For extreme feeding specialists like the greater bamboo lemur, climate change can be a stealthy killer, said study co-author Patricia Wright, a primatologist at Stony Brook University, in a statement. An infant greater bamboo lemur, born at the beginning of the rainy season. Photo by Jukka Jernvall. A 2014 assessment by the IUCN of the critically endangered primate found that numbers of the animal are down 80 percent in just the last three decades, attributing the decline to deforestation and habitat destruction for farming, logging and mining. But Wright and her colleagues found that the shifting diet of the greater bamboo lemur (Prolemur simus) might also be playing a role, indicating that other animals with similarly picky palates might also face tougher conditions in the future. They report their findings today in the journal Current Biology. In Ranomafana National Park in Madagascar, where the team observed some 2,000 lemur meals over 18 months, they noticed that the animals only went after the woody trunk of the bamboo during the 4-month dry season. The remainder of the year, this species of lemur seemed to prefer the succulent shoots that are both more nutritious and easier to tear into. An examination of the fossil record revealed that greater bamboo lemurs once inhabited a lot more of Madagascar. Now, however, theyre confined to places that have the shortest dry seasons, suggesting

As Grauers gorillas cling to survival, new population found "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

The last 3,800 Grauers gorillas, a subspecies of eastern gorilla, live only in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Photo courtesy Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International A mere 15 Grauers gorillas (Gorilla beringei graueri) were believed to live inside Africas Maiko National Park. But biologist Damien Caillaud suspected otherwise. He felt sure the preserves nearly-impassable jungle could shelter more of the Critically Endangered great apes hidden in deep gorges in the shadow of precipitous peaks. No one knew for sure. Maiko, which sprawls across some 4,000 square miles in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), has remained unexplored since the Congolese civil war broke out in 1994. Though the conflict officially ended in 2003, armed militias continue to make this region and this nation among the most dangerous places to monitor and conserve wildlife. The survey teams made a shocking discovery: they found that a mere 3,800 of the apes remained, holding on only in the most remote regions. In just two decades, 77 percent of the species had disappeared. Thousands of miners dig for valuable conflict minerals in the eastern DRC including coltan (pictured here), tin ore and gold. Photo courtesy Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International Most of them had been hunted and eaten as bushmeat, some by refugees from the Congolese civil war. But the majority were poached by militia groups and illegal miners who have invaded the forests in search of valuable conflict minerals such as coltan and tin ore

19:41

FIRE-EARTH ALERTS: HFDW, NMBV, PSLG, TRFB, MHNF "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

CJ FIRE-EARTH ALERTS: MHNF CJ OCT TML FIRE-EARTH ALERTS: TRFB All Groups FIRE-EARTH ALERTS: HFDW, NMBV, PSLG [Issued by FIRE-EARTH Science.] Details available via FIRE-EARTH PULSARS. Advertisements Filed under: News Alert Tagged: FIRE-EARTH Alerts, HFDW, MHNF, NMBV, PSLG, TRFB

19:22

FIRE-EARTH V-E Alert: KPN1 "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

All Groups FIRE-EARTH V-E Alert: KPN1 [Issued by FIRE-EARTH Science.] Details are available from FIRE-EARTH PULSARS.  Filed under: News Alert Tagged: 102601, Fire-Earth Alert, FIRE-EARTH PULSARS, FIRE-EARTH Science, FIRE-EARTH V-E Alert, KPN1, V-E Alert

19:17

Planet Loses Tree Cover Size of New Zealand in One Year "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

A pine plantation moving into native forest near a Mapuche community. Credit: Photo Langelle

By  

From the Mongabay Series: 

  • A new analysis of satellite data found 29.7 million hectares of tree cover was lost in 2016. The number represents a 51 percent jump over 2015.
  • The analysts say fire is the big culprit. The data indicate big upticks in fires around the around the world, both in areas where fire naturally occurs as well as wetter areas of the tropics where fire is a rare phenomenon.
  • El Nino coupled with human-caused land disturbance like slash-and-burn clearing is thought to have been a big contributor to increase in fire activity around the world.
  • Preliminary data indicate 2017 may also be a big fire year. The analysts recommend improved forest management to lower the risks of fire and tree cover loss.

Last year the world lost an area of tree cover the size of New Zealand, according to satellite data. Thats around 29.7 million hectares (297,000 square kilometers) and was a 51 percent jump over 2015.

The tree cover loss data came from the University of Maryland (UMD) and were analyzed by World Resources Institute (WRI). While the data dont just represent deforestation (they also lump in tree plantation harvesting), the analysts attribute most of the tree cover loss to human impacts affecting forests such agriculture, logging and mining.

But why the big jump in tree cover loss from 2015 to 2016? The analysis points specifically to fire as the primary culprit. The data indicate big upticks in fires around the world, both in areas where fire naturally occurs like northern Alberta, Canada and wetter areas of the tropics where fire is (or perhaps more accurately, use...

19:17

Hero Dog Leads Rescuers To Toddler Lost In Jungle "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

A 20-month-old child who got lost in a thick jungle has been found safe and sound thanks in no small part to a determined dog named Luke.

Credit: Corpo de Bombeiros Militar de Minas Gerais

Luke is a search and rescue dog with the Corpo de Bombeiros Militar, based in Minas Gerais, Brazil.

On Wednesday, the pup and his colleagues were called in to help track down the toddler, who had wandered away from home while being babysat by an older sibling. An hours-long search by the child's family and neighbors had failed to turn up any clues but none have a nose like Luke's.

Shortly after arriving on the scene, the dog had found a scent. Over the following 25 minutes, Luke led rescuers through a dense jungle, directly to where the child was standing.

The dramatic final moments of the search were caught on video.

Aside from a few scratches, the child was found to be in good health after the frightening ordeal.

Things could have ended much differently if it weren't for Luke a very good dog, indeed.

Credit: Corpo de Bombeiros Militar de Minas Gerais

19:10

UK Workforce Going Mad? "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

All Groups UK Report # 46 Poor mental health costs the UK economy up to 99 billion ($130bn) Background: Thriving at Work, a report commissioned by the UK government, explores the significant cost of poor mental health to UK businesses and the economy as a whole. Poor mental health costs the national economy []

19:09

Dog Abandoned 11 Times Is 'Desperate' For A Forever Home "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Sheana first arrived at a local municipal shelter in Long Island, New York in 2014.

The boxer mix was assumed to be a stray, but an abrasion on her muzzle and her notably nervous behavior around people especially men made shelter employees think otherwise. The person who dropped her at the shelter admitted that the scared brindle dog had indeed come from a physically abusive home, according to rescue workers, and like many maltreated animals, adjustment would be difficult.

Credit: Melissa Fogarty

Still reeling from an early life of pain and neglect, the then 2-year-old dog slowly began to adjust to her cage at Hempstead Town Animal Shelter in Wantagh. It seemed as if luck was on her side when she was taken in by a rescue organization and later sent to a training facility with hopes of helping her become comfortable around people.

She was even adopted ... but it didnt last.

Credit: Melissa Fogarty

Sheana was returned to the rescue again and again, and three years later, she found herself right back at the Hempstead shelter where her journey began. It broke shelter staffers hearts to see her returned for the 11th time.

Credit: Melissa Fogarty

She's been through a lot and it's taken its toll from us, to a rescue, to training, back to us and a few homes that haven't been the right fit in between, Melissa Fogarty, kennel supervisor at the Hempstead Town Animal Shelter, told The Dodo. She's a very resilient dog. I really do think she embodies the word.
...

19:06

Saddest Bear Is So Bored After Spending 25 Years In Same Tiny Cage "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

The black bear looked like he had given up on life. He lay on the ground of his enclosure, listless and unmoving.

This is what Julie Woodyer, campaign director for Zoocheck, a Canadian animal welfare organization, observed when she stood in front of the bear enclosure at the Spruce Haven Nature Park, a controversial roadside zoo in Ontario, Canada.

Credit: Zoocheck

He was completely lethargic, Woodyer told The Dodo. Hes in a state that we commonly call learned helplessness. Theres nothing for him to do.

The black bear, named Ben, has been living at Spruce Haven Nature Park for the last 25 years or possibly longer inside the same small enclosure, according to Woodyer. But Ben wasnt born in captivity.

He was an orphaned cub in the province of Ontario, Woodyer said. The Ontario Ministry [of Natural Resources and Forestry] found this orphaned cub and brought it over to them, and hes been in that situation [at the zoo] ever since.

Credit: Zoocheck

On Spruce Parks website, the facility claims to have started in the 1980s as a rescue facility for injured or abandoned domestic animals and birds, and says that its continued to provide sanctuary for injured and abandoned wildlife. Yet Woodyer doesnt buy this explanation.

The owners claim to be rescuing animals, but you cant imagine worse circumstances that the animals could be living in, so its certainly no rescue, Woodyer said. Bens enclosure, in particular, is probably the worst bear enclosure in North America. Weve looked at all kinds of facilities in the United States as well, even including the bear pits that exist, and this facility for Ben is absolutely the worst.
...

18:51

Sweet Dog Has Been Collecting Stuffed Animals For The Past 10 Years "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Alli was adopted into her family when she was just 5 months old, and not long after that, her mom gave her her very first stuffed animal: a lobster named Leroy. Alli absolutely adored her new stuffed animal, and her joy led her mom to buy her more and now, 10 years later, Alli still has every stuffed animal shes ever gotten, and loves them more than anything in the world. 

Credit: Mike Roberts

When she gets a new stuffed animal, Alli is very different from every other dog. Instead of playing with each toy until its completely destroyed, Alli is incredibly gentle with her toys, squeaking them and running around with them but also cuddling with them and making sure theyre always safe and accounted for. She loves each stuffed animal unconditionally, and cares for them as if theyre her best friends rather than just toys. 

Credit: Mike Roberts

They all fit into a little bin, but she's always got one with her, Mike Roberts, Allis dad, told The Dodo. She likes to present them to us when we come home from work and she uses them as pillows when she's laying down. She treats them really well. We've never really seen another dog take such good care of stuffed animals. 

Credit: Mike Roberts

The sweet dog has collected around 40 stuffed animals over the past 10 years, and her parents like to joke that shes essentially running a no-kill animal shelter at this point. She still plays with every stuffed animal shes ever received, and while sometimes she likes to hang out with them one-on-one  
...

18:00

Climate change threatens the survival of Madagascars bamboo lemurs "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Climate change could threaten the food supply of bamboo lemurs, new research finds, leaving the animals vulnerable to starvation.

The greater bamboo lemur is a critically endangered primate that lives deep in the forests of Madagascar. There are only around 500 greater bamboo lemurs left in the wild. Much like giant pandas, the animals survive on a diet consisting solely of bamboo.

However, climate change could threaten the feeding habits of these unique animals, the study author tells Carbon Brief.

Rising temperatures could lead to a prolonged and more intense dry season on the island, the research finds, which could alter the availability of fresh bamboo shoots, leaving only tougher, less nutritious options that wear down the lemurs teeth.

Greater bamboo lemur eats the tough culm (trunk) of bamboo

Greater bamboo lemur eats the tough culm (trunk) of bamboo. Credit: Jukka Jernvall.

Bamboozled

The new study, published in Current Biology, is the first to investigate how climate change could threaten the survival of bamboo lemurs.

To do this, the researchers first collected fossils of bamboo lemurs from across Madagascar in order to examine their teeth. This showed the researchers the extent to which the lemurs have become bamboo specialists, explains study author Prof Jukka Jernvall, an evolutionary biologist from the University of Helsinki. He tells Carbon Brief:

Bamboo is a very special kind of diet; hard to chew, difficult to digest, toxic, but there is plenty of it where it grows. Few species have evolved to survive on bamboo, but those that have, have very little competition....

17:47

Widespread damage, 3 dead and several missing after floods hit eastern Bulgaria "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

At least three people have died and several are still missing after an intense storm swept through several parts of eastern Bulgaria late Tuesday into Wednesday, October 25, causing floods, mudslides and widespread damage. More heavy rain is expected in the affected...... Read more

17:00

Family Orders Packages Just So Dog Can See Her Favorite UPS Driver "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Lucy was adopted by her parents from a pit bull rescue in Minnesota when she was just 12 weeks old. Five years later, Lucy was lying out on her lawn one day when Paul the UPS guy came to deliver a package to Lucys family and from that moment on, Paul and Lucy became best friends. 

Credit: Stephanie Heer

Paul always keeps dog treats in his truck to hand out to all of the dogs he sees on his route, and that was all Lucy needed to immediately fall in love with the friendly delivery man. While Paul meets a lot of dogs in his travels, his relationship with Lucy is for some reason very special, and both Lucy and Paul look forward to each and every visit they have together. 

Credit: Stephanie Heer

It was love at first sight, Stephanie Heer, Lucys mom, told The Dodo. Lucy can actually hear Pauls truck when we have our windows open at home and she gets up and runs to the door to find him. When we walk in our complex and she sees his truck, she runs as fast as she can and hops in his truck for a cookie and several kisses. 

Credit: Stephanie Heer

Lucys family orders stuff online as often as they can, just so that Lucy and Paul can see each other as much as possible. If Lucys family isnt home when Paul stops by to deliver a package, he leaves a cookie for her on the box, so that she knows hes always thinking of her. The pair have known each other for five years now, and their bond just seems to get stronger with every visit. Paul loves Lucy just as much as she loves him, and is always telling her and her family just how much she means to him. 
...

16:48

People Discover This Guy Curled Up On City Bus "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Riding a bus in Palo Alto, California, last month was a very unusual passenger. 

"No one is quite certain how the snake ended up on the bus," Buffy Martin-Tarbox, communications manager for the Peninsula Humane Society & SPCA (PHS/SPCA), told the San Francisco Gate, "but we are grateful someone spotted him and he was safely removed from the bus." 

Credit: Peninsula Humane Society

Credit: Peninsula Humane Society

The young ball python, who is about 2 feet in length, was brought to the shelter, where he was named Rumplesnakeskin and observed to be a "very friendly snake" who "likes to be held." 

Credit: Peninsula Humane Society

He was also given a patch of ersatz grass on which to slither around, while waiting for the perfect forever home. 

Credit: Peninsula Humane Society

"Hes very curious and enjoys being handled," Martin-Tarbox told The Dodo. "Hes shedding right now and were trying to not handle him too much while hes going through this process."

Quite fortunately, Rumplesnakeskin didn't have to wait very long at all for a forever home. This week a family fell in love with the slithery sweetheart....

16:26

Fracking Pollutants Linked to Brain Problems in Children "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Report highlights the neurological dangers for kids living near oil and gas fracking sites

16:26

Marcellus & Utica Drilling Rigs Active in PA, OH & WV "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Marcellus drilling rig, Chartiers Township, Washington Co., PA

Pennsylvania retains slim lead in rig counts over Ohio, more than WV

From an Article by Paul J. Gough, Pittsburgh Business Journal, October 23, 2017

Pennsylvania added one working natural gas rig to its tally in the first two weeks of October, maintaining its slim lead over Ohio among Appalachian natural gas producers.

There were 32 rigs in Pennsylvania during the week ended Oct. 20, according to the latest data released by oilfield services company Baker Hughes. That compares to 29 in Ohio, where the rig count has remained steady since the end of August. Pennsylvania has seen its rig count stay in the low- to mid-30s all year.

At the same time, West Virginia lost one rig since the beginning of October and now has 15. But thats still one rig higher than it had in August, according to Baker Hughes data.

Pennsylvania has always had a lead in rig counts over the course of the Marcellus and Utica Shale booms, but that traditional lead has been slipping in recent months as more takeaway capacity comes online in Ohio.

Baker Hughes said there were 913 oil and natural gas rigs in the U.S. last week, down 15 from a week ago but up 360 from a year ago when the energy industry was still in sustained downturn.

14:04

Saudi Aramco CEO: it will be decades before EVs shoulder a significant percentage of the energy mix. "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

And why it wont matter when they do Guest mockery by David Middleton CEO of worlds largest oil company says it will be decades before electric cars become real threat It will be decades before electric vehicles make up a significant percentage of the global car fleet, Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser said. Electric cars

13:04

A Peoples Tribunal on Environmental Justice and Fracked Gas "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Charlottesville, Virginia, October 28, 2017

A peoples tribunal on environmental justice impacts of fracked gas

From an Article by Lakshmi Fjord, Appalachian Voices, October 20, 2017

>>> Our guest author today is Lakshmi Fjord, a Visiting Scholar in Anthropology at the University of Virginia who lives in Charlottesville and owns property in Yogaville in Buckingham County, Va., where a giant compressor station would be built as part of the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline.

RE: A Peoples Tribunal on Environmental Justice and Fracked Gas

Date: October 28, 11:45 a.m. to 7 p.m., City Space, Charlottesville

Special Guests: Featuring nationally acclaimed community activist Lois Gibbs, environmental attorney and toxicologist Adrienne Hollis, as well as anthropologist of indigenous and environmental justice James Igoe.

For the past three years, the focus of my volunteer advocacy with Friends of Buckingham has been to research and document evidence to counter the blatant omissions in Dominions documents of required information on population, historic cultural resources, water and geo-hazards of the Union Hill site. Those documents include Dominions applications to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, to Buckingham County for a special use permit, and to the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality for an air permit to allow toxic pollution.

Who are the people of Union Hill and what unique harms do they face?

To piece together the evidence of black history in Buckingham County for public comments and hearings, I oversaw our door-to-door survey of 99 households located within one mile of the site, researched historic blogs and the Special Collections library at the University of Virginia, and relied heavily on the research of Charles White in Confederate records and Smithsonian files. I applied for and we received Most Endangered Historic Place listing by Preservation Virginia in 2016 due to the proposed ACP, and collaborated with the organization to apply for historic register nomination by the Virginia Department of Historic Resources.

We learned from these combined efforts that the population of Union Hill is five times greater than what Dominion reported to FERC. Union Hill...

11:05

FIRE-EARTH V-E Alert: CYK2 "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

All Groups FIRE-EARTH V-E Alert: CYK2 [Issued by FIRE-EARTH Science.] Details are available from FIRE-EARTH PULSARS.  Filed under: News Alert Tagged: 102601, CYK2, Fire-Earth Alert, FIRE-EARTH PULSARS, FIRE-EARTH Science, FIRE-EARTH V-E Alert, V-E Alert

09:58

Claim: The Anthropocene started in the mid 1950s "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

From the AMERICAN CHEMICAL SOCIETY Determining when humans started impacting the planet on a large scale Humans have so profoundly altered the Earth that, some scientists argue, our current geologic epoch requires a new name: the Anthropocene. But defining the precise start of the era is tricky. Would it begin with the spread of domesticated

09:20

Study links Raton Basin earthquakes to oil and gas fluid injections, again "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

A rash of earthquakes in southern Colorado and northern New Mexico recorded between 2008 and 2010 was likely due to fluids pumped deep underground during oil and gas wastewater disposal, says a new University of Colorado Boulder study. The study, which took place in...... Read more

Scientists use seismic waves to measure tornado intensity "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Seismic waves generated by tornadoes when they touch down could be used to measure a twisters intensity, according to a new study. The new research examined a catastrophic tornado that struck Joplin, Missouri in May 2011 and revealed the size of seismic waves...... Read more

07:23

UCERF3: Anticipating aftershocks in Southern California "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Southern California has the highest earthquake risk of any region in the U.S., but exactly how risky and where the greatest risks lie remains an open question. Earthquakes occur infrequently and depend on complex geological factors deep underground, making them hard...... Read more

07:04

Can open and honest scientists win public trust? "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

From MICHIGAN STATE UNIVERSITY EAST LANSING, Mich. With the increased politicization of science, more and more people continue to be skeptical of research, especially when it comes to hot-button topics such as climate change and vaccines. Michigan State University researchers wondered whether it would be better for scientists to acknowledge some of their personal

06:00

Armed Drones and (LIC) operations? "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

The following article reflects a grave situation as it relates to  the Narco-terrorist/Lawfare events happening just across the U.S. Mexican Border. These types of conditions have already spilled over into several U.S. cities and are recognizably evolving and/or being primed for something quite similar. From any reasonable asymmetric warfare scenario, the climate for low []

05:17

Former ER Physician Sounds The Alarm On Vaccination Dangers "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

ffhr4Dane Wigington GeoengineeringWatch.org The extreme and irreparable vaccination dangers are finally coming to light. Dr. Sherri Tenpenny is a veteran in the battle to raise awareness of the threats posed to human health by the ongoing vaccination assault being forced on populations. At a recent major public awareness event in Northern California (organized and sponsored by GeoengineeringWatch.org),

04:57

Its the Chicano way, or something "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Oye Burro! Mexico, about to break all records of murders in 2017 Nearly 50 killed in weekend of violence Mexico News Daily reported a spate of armed attacks across several states left close to 50 people dead over the weekend, further adding to an already alarmingly high 2017 death toll that is likely to make []

02:51

First significant cold blast expected in Europe late this weekend "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

A sharp patter change is expected to affect Europe starting late this weekend with much colder temperatures than average. "Various models are in good agreement for a sharp pattern change starting late this weekend from northern Europe spreading into...... Read more

The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report: October 18 - 24, 2017 "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

New activity/unrest was reported for 4 volcanoes between October 18 and 24, 2017. During the same period, ongoing activity was reported for 11 volcanoes. New activity/unrest: Agung, Bali (Indonesia) | Aoba, Vanuatu | Kirishimayama, Kyushu (Japan) | Tinakula, Solomon...... Read more

Author Steven Kotler on tackling the biodiversity crisis with technology "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Steven Kotler is a leading thinker on how technology can be employed to halt the global loss of biodiversity. Recently the prolific author and journalist convened a weekend forum for environmentalists and technologists in Tahoe, California, Creating Equilibrium, to bring these disciplines into conversation, and it featured speakers from famed ecologist David Suzuki to IBM Master Inventor Neil Sahota. Mongabay caught up with Steven Kotler afterward to continue the discussion. AN INTERVIEW WITH STEVEN KOTLER Mongabay: You say you take the biodiversity crisis personally, where does your devotion come from? Steven Kotler: It comes from being an animal geek. Even as a little kid, youd always find me at the Museum of Natural History looking at dinosaurs, or at the zoo. When I became a reporter I went considerably out of my way to hang out with scientists who were working with animals. I spent 2 years trying to get magazines to send me to Madagascar to hang out with [researcher] Pat Wright and study lemurs in the rainforest. I also run Rancho de Chihuahua with my wife, which is a dog sanctuary, most people dont think of dogs when they think about biodiversity but what I believe is that dogs and the animals that are closest to us are the gateway drug to biodiversity, how we treat the animals closest to us extends out to how we treat animals in the rest of the world. So we work on the frontlines of dog rescue in the second poorest county in America,

Two scientists and a NASA astronaut just biked across the Brazilian Amazon and want to tell you about it "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

On Sept 26, two scientists and a NASA astronaut completed TransAmazon +25, a bike trek across the Brazilian Amazon. What makes this trip particularly interesting is that one of the cyclists, Osvaldo Stella, a mechanical engineer with the non-profit Amazon Environmental Research Institute (IPAM) in Brazil who works with small-scale farmers and other landowners to preserve and restore forests, did the same ride 25 years ago. That means he was able to observe firsthand the environmental and social changes that have occurred in the region over the past quarter century. On that first ride, Stella was joined by a couple of friends who were also inspired to venture across the Amazon after having witnessed the outcomes of the 1992 Rio Earth Summit. This time around, though, Stella was accompanied on the journey by Paulo Moutinho, a co-founder and senior scientist at IPAM and a Distinguished Policy Fellow at the Woods Hole Research Center in the USA; as well as Chris Cassidy, an astronaut with the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and Navy SEAL. For Transamazon +25, the three cyclists covered 1,000 kilometers (about 620 miles) of the Trans-Amazonian Highway in the Brazilian states of Par and Amazonas. They made a documentary film about the trek, but they were also on a scientific fact-finding mission and they are now eager to report the changes to the landscapes and local communities that they bore witness to. Their larger goal, however, is to inspire the conservation of the Amazon and

Building conservations brain trust in Madagascar "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

ANTANANARIVO, Madagascar Nothing says patience quite like tromping around wet woods in the middle of the night to collar bats and track them back to their daytime roosts. And creativity certainly played a role in a recent study tracking the bushmeat trade by scouring urban dumps for tortoise shells. Julie Hanta Razafimanahaka was a co-author of each of those efforts. But ask her what it takes to become a field biologist in Madagascar and youll get a different answer altogether. Well, Razafimanahaka said, you have to be very lucky: thats the first thing. And it helps to be friendly too. That doesnt mean theres no chance, it means you really have to talk with many people, she added especially researchers with foreign passports. Razafimanahaka got involved in the research project that led to her masters thesis not because she was particularly interested in bats, she recalled, but because she was able to finagle a meeting with a Welsh researcher doing fieldwork in her favorite part of Madagascar the castle-like limestone formations of Tsingy de Bemaraha National Park. Nearly fifteen years later, she can trace the arc of her career back to that first meeting. The fieldwork in Tsingy de Bemaraha was part of a series of projects run by scholars at the University of Aberdeen with backing from the British government aimed at building up the CVs and skill sets of a new generation of Malagasy biologists to work on bat conservation. Yet when the fieldwork wrapped

02:00

IMF Head on Climate: we will be toasted, roasted and grilled "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Guest essay by Eric Worrall IMF head Christine Lagarde suggested were all in big trouble if we dont address climate change, while speaking at a conference in Saudi Arabia. We will be toasted, roasted and grilled: IMF chief sounds climate change warning Christine Lagarde warns of dark future if the world fails to take steps

00:27

This Adorably Tiny Furniture Collection Was Designed Just For Cats "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Japans Okawa City is home to some 150 furniture-making facilities, where local craftsman apply their talents to make some of the highest-quality products. Up until recently, humans have been the primary beneficiaries of those sleek, modern designs but not anymore.

Now, they're making tiny furniture for cats.

Credit: Okawa City

The furniture, like this bed, consists of scaled-down versions of human-sized products. Apparently, after years of practicing with those larger prototypes, the craftsmen finally felt confident that it'd please their feline consumers, too.

Credit: Okawa City

They've also created a little couch for kitties one small enough that they needn't worry about having to share with their owners.

Credit: Okawa City

Credit: Okawa City

According the Designbloom, creating the feline furniture is part of an effort to spread awareness about Okawa City and all that local craftsmen there have to offer. It's unclear if or when the tiny products will be available for purchase, but given the popularity of the campaign so far, it would be surprising if they little couches and beds didn't start appearing in showrooms.

Until then, it seems cats will just have to settle for laps.
...

00:02

Police Dog Gets Tired Of Watching Soccer Match From The Sidelines "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Invading soccer matches isnt just for squirrels.

A police dog working the sidelines at a stadium in Bolivia evidently grew tired of sitting around watching other people play. So, in a delightful show of canine rebellion, he spontaneously stormed the pitch to get in on the action essentially, doing the very thing he is tasked with preventing.

Credit: Tigo Sports Bolivia

About 37 minutes into a match this week between the teams Blooming and Nacional Potos, the furry security officer somehow managed to give his handler the slip and then make his move. With all the athleticism and dribbling skills of the professionals, the dog dominated the field for several exhilarating moments.

The players looked a bit annoyed with the interruption, but everyone else seemed to love it. Even the announcers were delighted.

For better or worse, the dogs adorable act of disorderly conduct was ultimately curtailed; he was rounded up and escorted off the field.

His glorious moment in the spotlight, however, won't soon be forgotten. 

00:02

Dog Who Was Chained Up With Her Newborn Puppies Looks So Different Now "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Morgan was abandoned in a backyard in South Carolina after her family moved away, confined on a heavy chain, unable to move very much at all. She was left alone and chained up for two whole weeks and during that time she gave birth to eight puppies. Poor Morgan struggled to care for her babies while chained up, with no food or water at all, before someone finally decided to call for help. 

Credit: Kristin Dubnoff

After being rescued by animal control, Morgan and her puppies were transported to New York and taken in by Rescue Dogs Rock NYC. They immediately went into foster care, and as soon as they arrived, it became clear just how neglected poor Morgan had been in her previous home. 

Morgan came emaciated, with a blown-out right knee, a compromised left knee and bowed front legs, presumably from malnourishment and desperately trying to pull off of her heavy chain, Kristin Dubnoff, Morgans foster mom, told The Dodo. 

Credit: Kristin Dubnoff

The sweet 2-year-old dog was able to have surgery on one of her knees shortly after arriving in her foster home, but afterward was diagnosed with heartworms, and therefore could not have the next surgery right away. Poor Morgan was so broken when she arrived in her foster home, and looked so terrible  

Credit: Kristin Dubnoff

but with lots of love and rest, Morgan quickly transformed into a healthy, happy dog, who just wants to love and be loved more than anything else, despite everything shes been through. 
...

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Wednesday, 25 October

23:23

What To Know Before Taking Your Dog Trick-Or-Treating This Halloween "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

With Halloween fast approaching, pet owners are busy finding the perfect costumes for their pups. But before dressing up your dog for a night of trick-or-treating, make sure he is comfortable getting in on the holiday fun.

Whether giving out the candy or hitting the streets, pet owners should take precautions when October 31 rolls around. Depending on where you live and how you celebrate, Halloween can be on par with July 4 and New Years Eve when it comes to lost dogs the noisy parade of monsters and ghouls ringing your doorbell can be extra anxiety inducing for a pet, causing him or her to bolt in search of a safer place.

Celebrate Halloween responsibly with a few easy safety measures:

If you are trick or treating



Before exposing your pet to a scary environment, make sure he is comfortable walking around the neighborhood on Halloween, notes Dr. Robert Proietto, a veterinarian based in New York City. If your dog is sensitive to noise or crowds, you may want to reconsider your plans.

It is important to understand your dog and not push his boundaries, Proietto tells The Dodo. One of the things we see during Halloween is animals that escape and get hit by cars. It is very important that you keep your pet safe and in a secure environment during this scary holiday.

If your dog is dressing up, tweak his costume to help keep him safe on busy streets. Consider putting reflectors on your dogs costume if you decide to take him trick or treating, Proietto recommends, just as you would for young children.

Be sure that your dogs costume fits well, without impairing your pups movement, vision or breathing. If candy collection is going to take a while, pack water and a bowl for your dog, and give him plenty of breaks to rest along the way.

And, as always, keep your pet on a leash, stresses Dr. Rachel Barrack of Animal Acupuncture. With all the loud noises and scary costumes, you want to be sure that you can steer your pup out of trouble...

23:12

Surgeon Comforts Orphaned Wombat In The Middle Of The Night "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

A little wombat lost everything along a road in Australia after her mother was hit and killed by a car but now she's getting the love and comfort she needs. 

"That is a common reason for wombats and other species coming into care," Dr. Howard Ralph, a veterinary surgeon who founded Southern Cross Wildlife Care (SCWC), told The Dodo. "Rosie came to us because she had been hiding in her dead mothers pouch for several days and the carer rightly felt that Rosie was very unwell and was not interested in drinking a bottle."

Credit: Howard Ralph

It was the early hours of the morning when Dr. Ralph comforted Rosie, giving her treatment for severe dehydration and pneumonia. This is often the life of a wildlife veterinarian so devoted his patients.

"We often are involved in late night care of patients," Dr. Ralph said. "The need is enormous ... The days are usually consumed by the urgent matters that often continue into the night and early morning with intensive care." 

Credit: Howard Ralph

Credit: Howard Ralph

Dr. Ralph has been helping wildlife for many years even as a kid he was fascinated by wild animals. Later, he knew he wanted to become a veterinarian.

"During my time at university studying veterinary medicine, it became apparent to me that wildlife generally did not receive the degree of respect that was due and that existed for other species such as domestic patients," Dr. Ralph said. "During my childhood and later as a teacher in Papua New Guinea I had regular contact with wild creatures so that a certain rapport became established early. After graduation the contact with wild patients gradually increased until eventually I undertook post graduate study in wildlife medicine."

Now that he founded and runs SCWC, he gets to spend much of his time helping all kinds of animals who live...

23:02

Shelter Dog Surprises Staffers With The Greatest Smile In The World "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Cheech was picked up on the streets of Texas and taken to a big local shelter when he was 2 years old. He was then pulled and taken in by the City of Waller Animal Shelter and Rescue. He was incredibly tiny, and staff assumed he might be a little scared or nervous in his new environment but Cheech quickly proved them wrong. 

Cheech was hanging out in his kennel shortly after arriving at the shelter and started making the cutest, weirdest face. Some of the staff and volunteers thought he might be upset rather than just being goofy  

Credit: Leah Sipe

but Cheech quickly flashed them the cutest, cheekiest smile, and from that moment on, everyone fell in love with the charismatic little dog.

Credit: Leah Sipe

I went into the kennel to check him out and yelled for the other volunteers to come look, Leah Sipe, director of the City of Waller Animal Shelter and Rescue, told The Dodo. They thought I was insane and that he was snarling, when I stuck my hand in the cage I thought they were going to pass out. He's as friendly as can be! 

Credit: Leah Sipe

Wanting to share Cheechs perfect smile with the whole world, Sipe posted a photo of him smiling on the shelters Facebook page and the internet quickly fell in love. The post got over 7,000 shares, and before long, the smiling dog had over 50 applications from people wanting to adopt him. 
...

22:42

Baby Elephant Starts Sprinting When He Sees New Friend To Play With "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

When an 8-month-old elephant was spotted by people on Kenya's Loisaba Conservancy all alone, they knew something was seriously wrong. 

Elephants are raised by their moms with the help from the whole herd (other female elephants who help raise the herd's babies are called "nannies") and elephants stick close to their herds even when they grow up. 

Credit: Jeremy Bastard/Reteti Elephant Sanctuary Community United for Elephants

If the little elephant, now named Loisaba, hadn't gotten the help of some kind people, he probably wouldn't have survived. 

Loisaba was brought from the conservancy to Reteti Elephant Sanctuary, where he'll be able to grow up strong and eventually be released back into the wild. And part of why he'll be able to do this is because he can be socialized with the herd of 10 other baby elephants at the sanctuary who also lost their families one way or another. 

Credit: Jeremy Bastard/Reteti Elephant Sanctuary Community United for Elephants

Credit: Jeremy Bastard/Reteti Elephant Sanctuary Community United for Elephants

After Loisaba was flown by plane to the sanctuary, it came time to meet the herd who would become so important to him.

And when one of the baby elephants, Nadasoit, spotted him, he got so excited he had to sprint over right away and meet the new orphan. Luckily, the sweet moment was caught on camera.

"His first friend came barreling down the hill to meet him," Reteti Elephant Sanctuary wrote. "They then began to intertwine trunks, like little children holding hands."...

22:29

@algore Your save the planet legacy palm oil is making Indonesia warmer "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

WUWT readers may recall Al Gores failed Goldman Sachs palm oil fantasy and the subsequent train wreck. Now, it gets even worse. Deforestation to make palm oil plantations is causing the very thing Al Gore rails against warming of the climate. From the EUROPEAN GEOSCIENCES UNION: Deforestation linked to palm oil production is making Indonesia warmer

22:00

Climate Justice Forum: Alberta Oil Train Derailment, Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill, Climate Activist Necessity Defenses, Spokane Proposition 2 Contentions, Seattle Tar Sands Financer Protests, Montana Fracking, Utah Tar Sands Mine Bankruptcy 10-25-17 "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

The Wednesday, October 25, 2017 Climate Justice Forum radio program, produced by regional, climate activist collective Wild Idaho Rising Tide, features news and reflections on an Alberta oil train derailment and nearby evacuations, the second largest Gulf of Mexico oil drilling spill, climate necessity defenses for Spokane oil and coal train blockaders and Minnesota and Montana tar sands pipeline valve turners, legal and finance contentions over the Spokane coal and oil train ballot initiative, Alta Mesa underpayment of Oklahoma gas royalties, activist disruption of 100 Seattle bank branches financing tar sands projects, Tongue River Valley, Montana, oil and gas development, and bankruptcy of a long contested Utah tar sands mine.  Broadcast for five and a half years on progressive, volunteer, community station KRFP Radio Free Moscow, every Wednesday between 1:30 and 3 pm Pacific time, on-air at 90.3 FM and online, the show describes continent-wide, community resistance to fossil fuel projects, thanks to the generous, anonymous listener who adopted program host Helen Yost as her KRFP DJ.


Filed under: Climate Justice Forum

21:04

This is not a skit: Dystopiazation of the masses who wouldve expected something completely different? "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

New Online Terror Laws Criminalize Thought, Says Terror Chief Risk Jail For Viewing Far Right Propaganda The power of holding two contradictory beliefs in ones mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them, to tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes []

20:59

BBC accused of being a left-wing mouthpiece today after a grovelling apology "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

James Tapsfield, Mail Online, via The GWPF The BBC was accused of being a left-wing mouthpiece today after it issued a grovelling apology for failing to challenge Lord Lawson over a claim temperatures have not risen over the last 10 years. Furious MPs said the decision to single out the peer showed the corporation had given up any

20:47

First vaquita rescued in bid to save the porpoise from extinction "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

For the first time, a team of scientists has captured and then released a vaquita (Phocoena sinus), a rare porpoise in the Gulf of California, as part of a project called VaquitaCPR aimed at hauling the critically endangered species back from the edge of extinction. The successful rescue made conservation history and demonstrates that the goal of VaquitaCPR is feasible, said Rafael Pacchiano, the minister of the environment and natural resources in Mexico, in a statement. No one has ever captured and cared for a vaquita porpoise, even for a brief period of time. Members of VaquitaCPR scan the sea for signs of vaquita in the Gulf of California. Photo credit: VaquitaCPR. The VaquitaCPR team, comprising members from at least seven countries, caught a 6-month-old calf on Oct. 19 with the aid of underwater acoustic monitoring, but team veterinarians noticed that the animal seemed to be stressed out. Once they had taken tissue samples for later genetic testing, they released it back into the location where they had found it. While we were disappointed we could not keep the vaquita in human care, we have demonstrated that we are able to locate and capture a vaquita, said Lorenzo Rojas-Bracho, a government scientist and the head of VaquitaCPR, in the statement. Short for Vaquita Conservation, Protection and Recovery, VaquitaCPR is a Mexican government-led project aiming to find the porpoises in the wild and house them in specially built pens. Its a last-ditch effort to save the remaining vaquita, whose numbers have declined to fewer than 30, one that

20:09

Blockade Stops Logging, Forest Protectors Need Help "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

McKENZIE BRIDGE, OR On October 23, Cascadia Forest Defenders [CFD] erected a road blockade at the entrance to the W Timber Sale to protest the current logging on National Forest Land. Already clashes have resulted in one... Read More

The post Blockade Stops Logging, Forest Protectors Need Help appeared first on Global Justice Ecology Project.

19:47

Guy Makes Himself A 'Cone Of Shame' So His Kitten Won't Feel Alone "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Rengar is only 6 months old, and he and his dad have already been best friends for most of his life. The pair are incredibly close and love doing everything together and so when Rengar was going through a rough time, his dad found the perfect way to make him feel less alone. 

Credit: Sarah Proctor

Rengar and his dad have very similar personalities. They can both be very stubborn and dont like being told what to do, but theyre also very affectionate when they want to be, and together they make the perfect team. The pair are rarely apart, from napping together  

Credit: Sarah Proctor

to playing video games

Credit: Sarah Proctor

to just hanging out and being goofy. 

Credit: Sarah Proctor

When little Rengar had to get neutered, he was not at all happy about having to wear a cone of shame afterward. His dad cuddled with him and tried his best to make him feel better, but Rengar was still feeling down and so his dad came up with the best idea. 

...

19:33

Squirrel Was NOT Happy About Being Chased Off Soccer Field "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Soccer might not be everyones cup of tea, but those fans who love the sport, really love it.

Some will even go to great lengths to show their devotion.

On October 24, right before Manchester City was set to face off against the Wolves at Etihad Stadium in the UK, an excited fan climbed onto the pitch during warm-ups.

An errant squirrel scurried out of the stands and onto the field, making himself at home in the center circle.

Pursued by two groundskeepers, the sports-loving squirrel delighted the crowd with his devotion to the game. The squirrel managed to elude his pursuers for quite some time, and it was clear that the adversaries were well-matched.

The only thing missing?

A tiny soccer ball.

19:11

Indigenous People March in London To Urge Support for Environmental Defenders Facing Violence "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

from The Guardian

Indigenous and rural community leaders from Latin America and Indonesia demonstrate against deforestation in London, during a stop on their way to the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties 23 (COP 23) in Bonn, Germany. Photograph: Tolga Akmen/AFP/Getty Images

Activists have marched through Whitehall to urge the UK government to give more support to environmental defenders who risk their lives protecting rainforests, rivers and the climate.

The demonstration on Tuesday was led by indigenous leader Candido Meza, who bore a banner reading Guardians of the Forest: end the devastation of the forest and the killing of forest people.

Behind them, dozens of climate, environment and indigenous rights activists marched in silence, some bearing photographs of defenders who have been killed in recent years, including Berta Caceres, Chut Wutty and Edwin Chota.

Last year was the deadliest ever for environment and land activists, according to the NGO Global Witness. With 158 already killed this year, the death toll in 2017 is on track to be even higher.

Representatives of these traditional communities said they had travelled from their homes to raise awareness in Europe about their role in maintaining forests, and to remind people once agai...

18:59

So far this year, 400 scientific papers debunk climate change alarm "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

400 Scientific Papers Published In 2017 Support A Skeptical Position On Climate Alarm by Kenneth Richard, No Tricks Zone During the first 10 months of 2017, 400 scientific papers have been published that cast doubt on the position that anthropogenic CO2 emissions function as the climates fundamental control knobor that otherwise question the efficacy of

18:50

Recurrent, positive polarity CH HSS sparks geomagnetic storming "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Our planet is again under the influence of a recurring, positive polarity Coronal Hole High Speed Stream (CH HSS), which is causing isolated periods of G1 - Minor geomagnetic storming. Over the past 24 hours, solar wind parameters were indicative of the arrival of a...... Read more

Record-high October temperatures hit California "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

A record-breaking heat is expected to continue affecting California for the third day in a row today. While more records could fall on Thursday, October 26, the temperatures are expected to return to normal for the season by the end of the week. Hot and dry Santa...... Read more

Rhino poacher sentenced to 18 years in prison "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

In July this year, poachers killed a female black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis), and hacked off her horns, in Liwonde National Park, Malawi. A Malawian court has now convicted and sentenced one of the poachers to 18 years in prison. Two of his accomplices were also handed sentences of ten and eight years each, according to African Parks, a conservation non-profit that manages Liwonde National Park in partnership with Malawis Department of National Parks and Wildlife (DNPW). The three men were arrested following a rapid joint operation undertaken by the Malawi Police Services and DNPW. Once the rhino carcass was discovered, the teams tracked the location of the horns to a shop owned by one of the poachers. The response teams searched the shop, and discovered the set of horns in a deep freezer. They also recovered the rifle used in the incident and 25 rounds of ammunition. Rarely in wildlife crime are the perpetrators brought to justice, African Parks Craig Reid, Park Manager of Liwonde National Park, said in a statement. The speed at which the poachers were located, arrested, tried and convicted is a testament to the Malawian government and its partners commitment to protecting their wildlife and taking a stand against criminal activity. Rangers on patrol in Liwonde National Park in Malawi. Photo by Annegr Bosman / Pluk Media. The court charged the three men with entering into a protected area without authority, conveying a weapon into a protected area, killing a listed species, possession of a weapon,

Crackdowns on illegal mining in Colombian Amazon not enough "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

PUERTO LEGUIZAMO, Colombia Already infamous for coca production and conflict, Colombias southwest department of Putumayo borders Ecuador and Peru and is ripe for a variety of eco-crimes.  In 2016 there were 45 arrests in the region connected to wildlife smuggling, gold mining and the illegal timber trade. These crimes pose serious threats to local biodiversity in the Colombian Amazon and its native populations, especially given the fact that Putumayo is home to enormous expanses of jungle that are difficult to monitor. Colombias armed forces have made progress in the fight against illegal mining through a series of crackdowns. Part of that success is due to the fact that the Naval Forces of Southern Colombia now have more time to combat environmental crimes now that the countrys largest guerrilla group, the FARC, which was recently demobilized. But eco-crimes are not easily eliminated in the Amazon and illegal armed groups continue to traverse the jungles. Increased operations against illegal mining, in particular, have only diminished but not eliminated the problem. Illegal gold mining has gravely impacted Amazonian ecosystems given that immense territories under rebel command were difficult for Colombias armed forces to control. Times have changed, though, according to the Navy. Jungle areas have become easier for armed forces to monitor owing to the recent peace agreement with the FARC guerrillas. Enforcement and consequences The Navys destruction of illegal mining equipment in its operations has impacted the local economy in the town of Puerto Leguizamo, according to residents. Locals

18:40

Ten People Face Court Over Efforts to Stop Adanis Dangerous Coal Mine "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

from Frontline Action

Bowen, 24th October: Ten people will face court in Bowen and Townsville today for participating in peaceful civil disobedience to stop mining giant Adani building their mega coal mine in Central Queensland.

Three people are facing charges of failure to move on after they peacefully occupied Adanis Townsville Headquarters, five people are facing trespass charges for blockading the road into Adanis Abbot Point coal port and two women are facing railway interference charges after they blocked the rail line into the port.

Speaking about why he occupied Adanis offices, grandfather and former business-man Garry Kelly said:

I must do whatever I can to ensure my children and grandchildren arent forced to endure a future that has been wrecked by the corporate greed of the fossil fuel industry.

Joel Rosenzveig who occupied Adanis headquarters said:

The approval of and taxpayer loan to the Adani mine speaks to a corrupt, impotent and irrelevant political class wholly compromised by the fossil fuel lobby. I stand by my actions in Townsville, but regret that they seem the only avenue left in helping to protect our national interest. I hope that history will reveal who are the real criminals in this struggle.

Emma Briggs, who blocked the rail line into Abbot Point, said:

Australia and the world cannot afford to allow Adanis coal mine to go ahead and it has been left to the ordinary citizens of this country to show our leaders the way forward to a sustainable existence on this planet.

John Ross, a nurseryman from Coramba, near Coffs Harbour, said:

India and the world do not need or want Adanis coal and the majority of Australians do not want this disastrous mine. I am...

17:46

Dog's Perfect 'Mop' Costume Just Won Halloween "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Sure, there is no shortage of cute and clever outfits for pets to put on in celebration of Halloween (if they're up for it, of course). But while its one thing to wear a costume, its another thing entirely to actually be the costume.

Just ask this adorable pup named Keki aka "Mop Dog."

Credit: All Creatures Animal Hospital

The sweet puli, a Hungarian livestock dog known for their long, curly locks, was a standout among costumed canines at last Sunday's MainStrasse Paw-Rade in Covington, Kentucky. It wasn't a contest, per se, but she more than "cleaned up" in the praise department. 

"This is the greatest thing in the world right now," Twitter user Darth wrote.

Capturing the essence of that ubiquitous floor-cleaning implement is no easy task. Well, except for Keki.

Clearly, she's owning this.

The best thing about her "Mop Dog" costume is the leisurely way she got to parade it about.

Rather than waddle around in some more cumbersome cos...

17:46

The United Colors of Benetton Include Blood Red in Argentina "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

By DARIO ARANDA Originally published by UpsideDownWorld.org   At the center of the forced disappearance of Santiago Maldonado and his subsequent death lay a global fashion company, Argentinas long-standing extractive model, and the repression of displaced Indigenous communities.... Read More

The post The United Colors of Benetton Include Blood Red in Argentina appeared first on Global Justice Ecology Project.

17:08

Analysis: How could the Agung volcano in Bali affect global temperatures? "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

While human activity has been the dominant driver of climate change over the past century, natural factors can influence short-term variations in global temperature.

Major volcanic eruptions, in particular, can have a sizable cooling impact on the climate lasting for five years or so.

The Mount Agung volcano in Bali, Indonesia, has been showing signs that an eruption is likely to occur this year. Last time Agung erupted, back in 1963, it had a noticeable cooling effect on the Earths climate.

Here, Carbon Brief examines how volcanoes influence the climate, and suggests that a new Agung eruption would likely only result in a modest and temporary cooling of global temperatures.

Volcanoes and climate change

Volcanoes generally have a cooling influence on the Earths surface.

Eruptions send a cloud of ash and dust high into the atmosphere. The sulphur dioxide released combines with water to form sulfuric acid aerosols, which reflect incoming sunlight and influence cloud formation. When eruptions are powerful enough to reach the stratosphere (18 km or more above the surface at the equator), these sulphate aerosols can stay aloft for a number of years and have a strong cooling effect on the climate.

Volcanic eruptions also release CO2 into the atmosphere, meaning they contribute to warming by strengthening the greenhouse effect. But this influence is very small, and is outweighed by the cooling impact of the dust and ash.

The location of volcanoes also matter. Major volcanic eruptions near the equator are more likely to have a big effect on global temperatures, while high-latitude eruptions (like Laki) will have their effects more limited to the one hemisphere. Sulphate aerosols from high-latitude volcanoes generally will not cross the equator, while tropical volcanoes tend to cool both hemispheres.

The figure below shows an example of what might happen if the Agung erupted today.

The black dots represent the actual measured temperatures (from Berkeley Earth), while the grey s...

16:56

A Tale of Two Lease Sales "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Or, more accurately, two tales about the same lease sale Guest rant by David Middleton Earlier this year, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke announced that all available leases in the Gulf of Mexico would be offered in two area-wide sales each year.  This is in contrast to the old practice of offering the leases once a

16:54

Eruption continues at Tinakula, water contaminated, people living on coconuts "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

The Tinakula volcano in Solomon Islands continues erupting for the fifth day in a row after it burst into life October 20, 2017. Heavy ashfall has already contaminated water supplies on nearby islands, but since the area is a no-fly-zone, residents will need to wait...... Read more

Tropical Storm "Saola" heading toward Okinawa, Japan "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Tropical Storm "Saola" formed late September 23, 2017, south of Guam, the Pacific Ocean as the 22nd named storm of the 2017 Pacific typhoon season. Saola is expected to strengthen into a Category 1 hurricane equivalent within a couple of days as it...... Read more

16:50

Who Are the Commons? Rethinking Capitalism by Considering the Interests of Whales "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Rather than having conservationists advocating for whales, we ought to be giving the whales themselves a seat at the table

15:43

We should have seen it coming "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

The Global Warming Thought Police Want Climate Skeptics In Jail Guest opinion by Kerry Jackson Conform or else! Thats the message of the global warming alarmists. Those who dont buy into the man-made climate change narrative should be prosecuted as criminals. Put officials who reject science in jail, someone named Brad Johnson who says hes

13:04

OVEC Warns Against Underground Storage Hub for Natural Gas By-Products "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Time now to phase out fossil fuels and dangerous chemicals

Planned Chemical Monstrosity Would Bring Skyrocketing Climate Emissions, Public Health Dangers

From a Study of the Ohio Valley Environmental Council (OVEC), August 30, 2017

The nations largest petrochemical hub is located in southern Louisiana along the Mississippi River. This area is known as Cancer Alley, because its neighbors suffer very high illness rates.

This Gulf Coast region is increasingly beset with hurricanes, floods and other storms which endanger the reliability of chemical production there. Meanwhile, theres been a recent increase in Gulf Coast export markets for natural gas liquids and the chemicals derived from them. So, industry and government are now planning to create a second major petrochemical region here in our Appalachian Ohio River Valley.

New petrochemical growth is also still planned for Louisiana. It seems that the biggest expected growth in U.S. oil fracking is in the Permian Shale, in Texas and Oklahoma; the oil and gas coming from there will go to Gulf Coast petrochemical areas.

But the biggest increase in fracking for natural gas (methane) and natural gas liquids is projected to come from Appalachia. According to a March 3, 2017 Shale Daily article, The Appalachian Basins shale formations helped to birth the natural gas renaissance in North America, and the region now is poised to join the Gulf Coast as a major petrochemical hub.

Central to these plans is the establishment of an Appalachian Storage Hub which would consist of underground storage facilities for natural gas liquids extracted from the Marcellus, Utica and Rogersville shales across West Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio, and Pennsylvania, as well as a vast network of new pipelines.

Petrochemicals have been stored underground for a long time, but not without some serious problems. For example, a salt deposit dug out for multiple underground storage caves for natural gas liquids and other chemicals became the site of a catastrophe that destroyed most of a small town in Louisiana in 2012. A drill bit pierced the side of one chemical storage cavern. Toxic chemicals oozed up and most of an entire community was forced to move out.

We also remember a more recent huge and long-lasting problem with leaking underground...

10:58

Powerful storm hits Hawaii, leaves 150 000 without power in Maui "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

A powerful storm hit Hawaii late Monday, October 23 into Tuesday, October 24 with powerful winds, numerous lightning strikes and heavy rain that knocked out power to the entire island of Maui. At least one teenage girl has been injured after a tree fell on a bus...... Read more

09:31

Study: Ice sheets may melt rapidly in response to soot from distant volcanoes "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Study of ancient eruptions shows modern ice sheets could be vulnerable From THE EARTH INSTITUTE AT COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY and the dirty ice melts faster department Volcanic eruptions have been known to cool the global climate, but they can also exacerbate the melting of ice sheets, according to a paper published today in Nature Communications. Researchers who

08:06

Biological Health Hazard Hemorrhagic Fever, Marburg virus (MARV) Outbreak: Kween District, Uganda "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

MARBURG VIRUS DISEASE UGANDA (03): (KWEEN) ************** Published Date: 2017-10-24 15:08:23 Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> Marburg virus disease Uganda (03): (QW) Archive Number: 20171024.5401319 Date: Fri 20 Oct 2017 Source: WHO Media centre, news release [edited] WHO supports containment of rare virus on Uganda-Kenya border WHO is working to contain an outbreak of Marburg []

06:23

Lightning produces afterglow of gamma radiation "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Researchers previously thought that X-rays and gamma radiation produced by lightning only lasted for a very short time, about one ten-thousandth of a second. However, a new study reveals that the ionizing radiation of lightning appears to emit much longer than...... Read more

06:04

if a pig had a better personality, hed cease to be a filthy animal? "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

CJ OCT TML Wed have to be talkin bout one motherfuckin charmin pig. Pulp Fiction Background: A FIRE-EARTH Presentation: From the Start to Finish If the US election wasnt actually rigged, then, and itd be an even more frightening prospect,  those who voted for the orange mess, and the pig farmers who dont flush him down []

04:57

FIRE-EARTH ALERTS: FJDB, GXLM, LMDM, MVFM, PGNJ "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

All Groups FIRE-EARTH ALERTS: FJDB, GXLM, LMDM, MVFM, PGNJ Issued by FIRE-EARTH Science and CW Teams.] Details via FIRE-EARTH PULSARS.  Filed under: News Alert Tagged: 102401, CW, FIRE-EARTH Alerts, FIRE-EARTH PULSARS, FIRE-EARTH Science, FJDB, GXLM, LMDM, MVFM, PGNJ

04:18

New magma pathways after giant lateral volcano collapses "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Giant lateral collapses are huge landslides occurring at the flanks of a volcano. Giant lateral collapses are rather common events during the evolution of a large volcanic edifice, often with dramatic consequences such as tsunami and volcano explosions. These...... Read more

Comet 96P/Machholz enters field view of LASCO coronagraphs "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

For the fifth time since SOHO launched in 1995, fascinating comet 96P/Machholz will be entering the field of view of the SOHO/LASCO coronagraphs. This year, however, it will also pass through the view of STEREO-A/SECCHI COR1 and COR-2 coronagraphs. For the first...... Read more

Black rhinos in Tanzania now monitored via sensors implanted directly in their horns "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

In a first for the species, several black rhinos in Tanzanias Mkomazi National Park have had small, networked sensors embedded directly in their horns in order to allow park rangers to monitor the animals much more closely than in the past. The sensors make use of LoRaWAN technology (which stands for Long Range Wide Area Network), a wireless communication protocol and system architecture that is expected to do for the Internet of Things (IoT) what 3G and 4G connectivity did for mobile phone networks. In other words, LoRaWAN is designed to allow low-powered devices, like sensors in rhino horns, to communicate with Internet-connected devices, like computers in a ranger station, over long-range wireless networks. The sensors were deployed by a company called The Internet of Life, which uses IoT technology to protect endangered wildlife, and the ShadowView Foundation, which specializes in applying innovative new technologies to environmental and wildlife conservation. Instead of GPS, a relatively power-hungry technology, the battery-powered sensors use a geolocation system developed by a company called Semtech that makes it possible to update the rhinos location as much as a couple times every hour. Many GPS-enabled IoT applications consume so much energy that updates are only possible once or twice a day. All of the location data generated by the sensors is transmitted to a command center, where each black rhino being tracked appears on a digital map. Various other systems are integrated into this control room, according to project leader and Internet of Life founder Tim

01:42

Why did the 2014 Oso landslide travel so far? "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

On Saturday, March 22, 2014, a devastating landslide roared across the North Fork of the Stillaguamish River, near Oso, Washington. The landslide killed 43 people as it plowed through the Steelhead Haven neighborhood. When it stopped, after crossing the river, the...... Read more

The world lost an area of tree cover the size of New Zealand last year "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Last year the world lost an area of tree cover the size of New Zealand, according to satellite data. Thats around 29.7 million hectares (297,000 square kilometers) and was a 51 percent jump over 2015. The tree cover loss data came from the University of Maryland (UMD) and were analyzed by World Resources Institute (WRI). While the data dont just represent deforestation (they also lump in tree plantation harvesting), the analysts attribute most of the tree cover loss to human impacts affecting forests such agriculture, logging and mining. But why the big jump in tree cover loss from 2015 to 2016? The analysis points specifically to fire as the primary culprit. The data indicate big upticks in fires around the world, both in areas where fire naturally occurs like northern Alberta, Canada and wetter areas of the tropics where fire is (or perhaps more accurately, used to be) a rare phenomenon. One of these latter areas is the Brazilian Amazon. Rainforest is, by definition, rainy and moist, and the Amazon rainforest is no exception. Rainforest shouldnt burn on its own and yet, WRIs analysis found understory fires contributed to a tripling of tree cover loss in the Brazilian Amazon (3.3 million hectares) over that time. Brazil also showed high fire activity this year, with particularly high levels in the state of Para. The fires shown were detected in the first week of October, 2017. Fire data provided by VIIRS via NASA/NOAA. Researchers believe many of these

Tuesday, 24 October

23:06

Dogs Carried In Plastic Bags On Bike Had No Idea Where They Were Headed "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

The dogs would have been petrified with fright.

Last month, someone grabbed two dogs off the streets in Tangerang, Indonesia, and tied their mouths shut, probably so the dogs wouldnt try to bite. After that, the dogs were stuffed into mesh bags there were small holes to stick their noses through, but it would have been hard for them to breathe.

Credit: Chisuli Kastumi/Facebook

One of the dogs stuck his tongue out to try and cool himself, but his snout was tied and he couldnt fully open his mouth.

Credit: Chisuli Kastumi/Facebook

The bags holding the two dogs were tied together, and a man draped them over his bike. He was going to sell the dogs to a restaurant, where theyd be slaughtered for their meat, according to a Facebook post written by someone who witnessed the incident.

Credit: Chisuli Kastumi/Facebook

It is shocking to see dogs, a nonhuman species that has been a willing helper to humans since time immemorial, treated like a piece of wood or rock in Indonesia, Peter Li, China policy advisor for Humane Society International (HSI), told The Dodo. These look like dogs shipped for slaughter and consumption.

But thankfully, people saw what was going on and they rescued the dogs.
...

22:18

Al Gores Apocalyptic Fantasy Lecture at Rice University "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

As promised, I attended Al Gores climate change lecture at Rice University last night. Rice University is one of the most beautiful university campuses Ive ever seen, so it was a delight to see it again. The architecture is outstanding, and the buildings are placed in a garden-like setting. It was lovely to walk from

21:56

Fox Stuck In Bottom Of Skate Park Needed All The Help He Could Get "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Two women were walking through a park when they passed by the skateboarding area and spotted a fox down in one of the skate bowls, desperately trying to climb his way back out. Wanting to help, but knowing they couldnt do it on their own, they decided to call for help. 

The fox was really struggling to get out; every time he ran up the side he slid back down again, Claire Fisher, an inspector with the RSPCA, said in a press release. He was trying so hard to free himself that he got exhausted. 

Credit: RSPCA

The two woman contacted the RSPCA in hopes that it could help the poor, confused fox, and Claire Fisher arrived on the scene. By the time she got to the skate park, the poor fox looked so defeated, and seemed to think he was never going to make it out of that skate bowl. 

When I got there he was curled up. It was almost as though he had given up, Fisher said. I went down into the bowl myself and carefully put him in a net, before hauling myself out. It was quite hard to get out of the bowl and I was worried Id end up needing help myself to get out! 

Credit: RSPCA

After trying to climb out of the bowl with the fox in tow, it became very clear to Fisher exactly how the fox had gotten stuck and why most people dont venture into the bowl without a skateboard. 

Once she and the fox were safely out of the bowl, Fisher walked over to a nearby grassy area and set the net down. The fox was confused and thrashing around  

Credit: RSPCA

but as soon as the net was off of him, he sprinted away into the woods, so relieved to finally be free again. ...

21:55

Dog Becomes Mom To Every Puppy And Kitten She Meets "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Pirate has a habit of adopting puppies who have lost their moms. Not only does the 5-year-old dog cuddle and clean them she also produces milk for them to nurse. But Gabi Vannini, Pirates owner, never expected her to adopt a tiny, orphaned kitten.

In June of last year, Pirate was rescued from a hoarders home in Michigan, where a total of 98 dogs and 3 cats were found covered in feces and urine. Pirate had two puppies at the time, and three of them went into foster care with Vannini.

Credit: Gabi Vannini

Vannini ultimately adopted Pirate, and when Pirates puppies grew up, she helped find them loving homes. But it didnt take long for Pirate to start mothering again, although shes never had puppies of her own again. Instead, Pirate started adopting the foster animals Vannini brought home from the Dallas Animal Services and Adoption Center.

Credit: Gabi Vannini

The first time I took home bottle babies from the shelter, it was just for a night until a rescue was going to take them, Vannini, who also serves as public information coordinator for Dallas Animal Services and Adoption Center, told The Dodo. I thought, Pirate is really sweet with puppies, so maybe she can clean them and keep them warm while I bottle-feed them.

But Pirate did more than keep them warm she started producing milk for the puppies, despite the fact she stopped nursing her own puppies over a year ago.

Credit: Gabi Vannini

She was immediately like, Oh yeah, you...

21:41

Mischievous Baby Orca Sneaks Up On Unsuspecting Swimmers "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

It's beach season in New Zealand, and hundreds of people were enjoying the sun and surf at Hahei Beach last week when some of them got a very unexpected visitor.

Credit: Kelly Lindsay/Storyful

Four wild orcas were thought to be hunting stingrays off the coast when one of the baby orcas became curious and swam right up to people wading in the clear water. And the sight of a dorsal fin coming straight at them sent the swimmers scurrying for the shore. 

Credit: Kelly Lindsay/Storyful

Credit: Storyful/YouTube

Orcas are very intelligent and social animals who stick with their families their whole lives, and baby orcas like this one learn to hunt from their parents and relatives in their pod. 

Credit: Kelly Lindsay/Storyful

So maybe the beachgoers were right to be startled by the baby orca he might have been practicing his newly acquired skills on them. 

But the swimmers had no hard feelings toward the little orca. "He's just playing," one person can be heard saying. ...

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