Back to Top

Elephants electrocuted by sagging power lines | Janaki Lenin

Many elephants get electrocuted by low-slung overhead electric cables before authorities take action

On the night of 4 September, a large tusker was electrocuted by a sagging high tension electric cable in Kaziranga national park, Assam.

Two large bull elephants emerged from flooded Kaziranga to reach high ground across the highway that borders the park, when one blundered into the electric wire. There was no way the animals could have seen it at night.

Continue reading…
Source: Guardian Environment

With a nip and a bit of tuck Turnbull can bring a touch of green to Direct Action

The Coalition’s climate policy holds a hidden key which will allow its new leader to set tougher baselines that emitters are not allowed to exceed

Malcolm Turnbull once said he didn’t want to lead a party that wasn’t as committed to climate action as he was. Now he does.

Climate policy cost Turnbull the Liberal leadership in 2009 when he backed Kevin Rudd’s emissions trading scheme. He had to promise not to try to reintroduce an emissions trading scheme to gather the support he needed to win it back.

Continue reading…
Source: Guardian Environment

National Grid to remove electricity pylons from protected landscapes

Pylons to be replaced with underground cables in £500m project to improve scenery in New Forest, Peak District, Snowdonia and Dorset

Four protected landscapes are to be transformed by removing the electricity pylons and overhead lines that scar the view, under plans unveiled by National Grid.

Funding of £500m will go to reducing the visual impact of stretches of high-voltage transmission lines by replacing a total of 45 pylons with underground cables in three national parks – near Hale in the New Forest, near Dunford Bridge in the Peak District and near Porthmadog in Snowdonia – and the area of outstanding natural beauty (AONB) near Winterbourne Abbas, Dorset.

Continue reading…
Source: Guardian Environment

Ed Davey to advise law firm on renewable energy projects

Former energy secretary to work for Herbert Smith, but not advise on their Hinkley Point or Swansea Bay work

Ed Davey, the former energy secretary, is to start private work today for City lawyers connected with both Hinkley Point C nuclear plant and the Swansea Bay lagoon.

Davey has been given clearance by the Cabinet Office to provide consultancy to Herbert Smith, a law firm that provides advice on the two power projects and where his brother is also employed.

Continue reading…
Source: Guardian Environment

Whales to gain 'long-sought protections' as navy limits sonar use, activists say

Court orders settlement after Earthjustice, Greenpeace and other organizations take legal action amid concern over the impact of military training activities

A federal court has ordered a settlement in two cases that challenged the United States navy’s training and testing activities off the coasts of Hawaii and Southern California.

Environmental legal aid organization Earthjustice tells the Guardian that the settlement will secure “long-sought protections for whales, dolphins, and other marine mammals by limiting navy activities in vital habitats”.

Continue reading…
Source: Guardian Environment

The Arctic loses its grip

Any day now Arctic sea-ice is going to hit its lowest extent for the year, and once again it’s set to be one of the lowest years on record (the four lowest years have all occurred since 2007). Already a number of ships have glided safely through the fabled northwest passage, unencumbered by sea-ice.

Typically the Arctic sea-ice minimum occurs in mid to late September and the signs so far suggest a lean year. Back in August the sea-ice covered 5.61m square kilometres – the fourth lowest August average in the satellite record. And by the end of August the area of sea-ice was already in sixth lowest position.

Continue reading…
Source: Guardian Environment

California drought: Sierra Nevada snowpack falls to 500-year low

Last winter’s snow accumulation in the mountains that provide state’s most important natural water system was just 5% of what is normal, study finds

The Sierra Nevada snowpack that is a critical water source for California fell to a 500-year low last winter – far worse than scientists had estimated and underlining the severity of the current drought, according to new research.

The snow accumulation in the mountains was just 5% of what is normal, inflating the risk of wildfires, drying up wells and orchards, and pushing communities into water rationing.

Continue reading…
Source: Guardian Environment

Two untamed wildfires displace 23,000 people in northern California

Valley fire incinerates 95 square miles in just two days, while 10,000 people flee a second blaze, the Butte fire about 200 miles away in the Sierra Nevada

Related: By the numbers: a look at the California wildfires so far

Two explosive wildfires have displaced 23,000 people in northern California and threaten to wreak more devastation in rural communities, which have lost hundreds of homes.

Continue reading…
Source: Guardian Environment

Nine out of 10 new diesel cars in breach of EU pollution rules, report finds

Road test reveals cars emit seven times the legal limit of exhaust emissions under the new Euro 6 standards

Nine out of 10 new diesel cars break new EU pollution limits when tested on roads rather than test tracks, according to a new report.

On average, the cars emit seven times the permitted level of NOx gasses, with the worst car producing 22 times the legal limit. Models from every major motor manufacturer breached the limit when they were evaluated in real-world conditions.

Continue reading…
Source: Guardian Environment

African nations work together to rid supply chains of conflict materials

A new certification framework developed by a group of African nations now makes it easier for companies to weed out conflict minerals from their supply chain

A group of African nations have developed a framework that will make it easier for companies to keep conflict minerals out of their supply chains.

The new certification framework, known as the Regional Certification Mechanism, was developed by the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR), an intergovernmental organization of 12 African countries, and released in August. It includes multiple steps and a system of checks and balances that experts say will make it easier for companies to clean up their supply chains.

Continue reading…
Source: Guardian Environment