February 1, 2018

CO2 Removal 'No Silver Bullet' to Fighting Climate Change, Scientists Say

Technologies to remove carbon from the atmosphere—which range from spraying sun-dimming chemicals high above the Earth to carbon capture and storage—to help stave off global warming "are certainly no silver bullet," and policymakers should make more effort to reduce emissions, scientists from the European Academies' Science Advisory Council wrote in a report.

January 31, 2018

FEMA to End Food and Water Aid for Puerto Rico

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will "shut off" its mission that has provided more than 30 million gallons of potable water and almost 60 million meals in Puerto Rico since Hurricane Maria. About a third of residents in the U.S. territory still lack electricity and some lack running water.

Large Beetles Are Shrinking, Thanks to Climate Change

As temperatures have increased over the past 100 years, the world's biggest beetles may have been shrinking—some have even downsized by as much as 20 percent in 45 years, according to a new study. Some ground beetles, like tiger beetles and beetles that eat millipedes, shrank by 1 percent of their body weight for every 1 degree Celsius temperature increase.  

Rewetting the Swamp: Indonesia’s Bold Plan

Massive peatland fires in Indonesia in 2015 caused the country to go from the sixth- to fourth-largest emitter of greenhouse gases. The government is now pushing a controversial project to wet the drained peat swamps again, with an ambitious plan to restore 2.5 million hectares by 2020 that hinges on widespread use sustainable farming techniques.

January 30, 2018

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee Rejects Vancouver Oil Terminal

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee has rejected a permit to build the nation's largest oil-by-rail terminal on the Columbia River. The state's Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council unanimously voted last year to reject the project. Inslee noted several concerns, including the potential of earthquake damage to the facility and risk of an oil spill or explosion.

Coal Firms Plead to Courts, Trump for West Coast Export Terminals

The U.S. coal industry is ramping up its lobbying to the Trump administration to win approval for West Coast coal export terminals that could provide it a lifeline to Asia markets. Coal producers have filed two lawsuits against Washington state and California to challenge local decisions that block port projects.

Can Seaweed Help Save Shellfish from Ocean Acidification?

Acidifying seawater is causing problems for oyster farms along the West Coast, and with climate change, it's only expected to get worse. Bay Area oyster farmers are teaming up with scientists to figure out ways to adapt, like using seagrass to pull carbon out of the water, making it slightly less acidic.

January 29, 2018

Climate Change Could Ravage Indian Farming

Climate change is taking a toll on India's agricultural productivity and farmers' incomes, according to a new economic survey. About half of India's total land under agriculture is unirrigated and relies on rainfall; climate change effects could reduce those farmers' annual agricultural incomes by 20 to 25 percent.

January 26, 2018

EPA Ends Clean Air Policy Opposed by Fossil Fuel Interests

The EPA said it is getting rid of the "once in, always in" policy under the Clean Air Act, which has defined how major sources of air pollutants are regulated since 1995. The rule is opposed by fossil fuel companies; without it, major pollution sources like coal-fired power plants can be reclassified and subjected to different standards.

Chemical Sunshade to Slow Global Warming May Not Be Feasible, UN Says

Geoengineering proposals to spray chemicals like sulfur in the atmosphere to provide planetary sunshade and slow global warming may be "economically, socially and institutionally infeasible," according to a new UN draft report. The researchers wrote that too little is known about the technology, which could disrupt global weather patterns.

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