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Who Did This To Peru's Jungle?

http://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2015/05/17/398765777/who-did-this-to-perus-jungle

Image: An aerial photo shows the environmental destruction in the wake of illegal gold mining in the Peruvian Amazon. Courtesy of Gregory Asner, Carnegie Institution for Science

npr.org - May 17, 2015 - Jason Beaubien

Gold has been a blessing and a curse for Peru for centuries. In the 16th century, one of the first Spanish explorers to arrive, Francisco Pizarro, was so enthralled by the mineral riches that he took the Inca king hostage.

Pizarro demanded a room filled with gold for the release of the Atahualpa. According to legend, the Inca delivered the ransom, packing a room from floor to ceiling with the precious metal.

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California Gov. Jerry Brown Orders Aggressive Greenhouse Gas Cuts By 2030

Governer Jerry Brown.

Image: Governer Jerry Brown.

huffingtonpost.com - April 29th 2015 - Kate Sheppard

California Gov. Jerry Brown issued an executive order Wednesday directing the state to cut is greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030, the toughest proposed cuts of any state in the nation.

The 2030 target will ensure that California can meet its emissions target for the middle of this century, which calls for an 80 percent cut by 2050, Brown said. The state is already on pace to meet its goal of bringing heat-trapping emissions down to 1990 levels by 2020, a target set under a 2006 state law.

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Planetary Boundaries: Guiding Human Development on a Changing Planet

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CLICK HERE - RESEARCH - Planetary boundaries: Guiding human development on a changing planet

As Science publishes the updated research, four of nine planetary boundaries have been crossed: climate change, loss of biosphere integrity, land-system change, altered biogeochemical cycles (phosphorus and nitrogen). Image source: F. Pharand-Deschênes /Globaïa

stockholmresilience.org

Planetary Boundaries 2.0 – new and improved

As Science publishes the updated research, four of nine planetary boundaries have been crossed

Four of nine planetary boundaries have now been crossed as a result of human activity, says an international team of 18 researchers in the journal Science (16 January 2015). The four are: climate change, loss of biosphere integrity, land-system change, altered biogeochemical cycles (phosphorus and nitrogen).

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Canadian government pushing First Nations to give up land rights for oil and gas profits

A rally against the expansion of the Kinder Morgan tar sands pipeline on Burnaby Mountain in British Columbia, Canada, in November, 2014. Photograph: Mark Klotz/flickr

Image: A rally against the expansion of the Kinder Morgan tar sands pipeline on Burnaby Mountain in British Columbia, Canada, in November, 2014. Photograph: Mark Klotz/flickr

theguardian.com - March 4th 2015 - Martin Lukacs

The Harper government is trying to win support for its pipelines and resource agenda by pushing First Nations to sideline their aboriginal rights in exchange for business opportunities, documents reveal.

The news that Canada’s Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs is working to this end by collaborating with the Assembly of First Nations (AFN) is sparking strong criticism from grassroots Indigenous people.

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Europe Unlikely to Meet Climate Goal, Study Finds

CLICK HERE - SOER 2015
— The European environment — state and outlook 2015

CLICK HERE - Synthesis Report
The European environment — state and outlook 2015

CLICK HERE - Assessment of Global Megatrends
The European environment — state and outlook 2015

nytimes.com - by Melissa Eddy - March 2, 2015

BERLIN — The European Union will fail to meet an ambitious goal of significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 unless it takes more aggressive measures to limit the use of fossil fuels and adopts new environmental policies, according to a report released on Tuesday.

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Mapping the Zoonotic Niche of Ebola Virus Disease in Africa

submitted by Stephen Morse

elifesciences.org - September 8, 2014 - eLife 2014;3:e04395
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04395

Ebola virus disease (EVD) is a complex zoonosis that is highly virulent in humans. The largest recorded outbreak of EVD is ongoing in West Africa, outside of its previously reported and predicted niche. We assembled location data on all recorded zoonotic transmission to humans and Ebola virus infection in bats and primates (1976–2014). Using species distribution models, these occurrence data were paired with environmental covariates to predict a zoonotic transmission niche covering 22 countries across Central and West Africa. Vegetation, elevation, temperature, evapotranspiration, and suspected reservoir bat distributions define this relationship. At-risk areas are inhabited by 22 million people; however, the rarity of human outbreaks emphasises the very low probability of transmission to humans. Increasing population sizes and international connectivity by air since the first detection of EVD in 1976 suggest that the dynamics of human-to-human secondary transmission in contemporary outbreaks will be very different to those of the past.

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Pope Francis: Christians Have a Duty to Protect Environment

      

Pope Francis (CNS)

catholicherald.co.uk - by Conor Gaffey - February 9, 2015

Protecting the environment is a Christian duty not just reserved for ‘green’ activists, Pope Francis said today.

The Pope tackled the topic of creation in his morning homily at Casa Santa Marta, warning that Christians must be the protectors of the natural world, not its masters. . .

. . . The Pope is expected to release his eagerly anticipated encyclical on the environment in June or July ahead of the UN Climate Change Conference to be held in Paris in December.

On his flight from Sri Lanka to Manila in January, Francis was reported to have said that human beings are largely to blame for climate change.

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Meant to Keep Malaria Out, Mosquito Nets Are Used to Haul Fish In

 

Millions of mosquito nets are given out fight to malaria in Africa, yet many faced with hunger use them as fish nets, creating potential environmental problems. Video by Ben C. Solomon on Publish Date January 24, 2015. Photo by Uriel Sinai for The New York Times.

NEW YORK TIMES   by Jeffery Gettleman                           Jan. 25, 2015

BANGWEULU WETLANDS, Zambi --Across Africa, from the mud flats of Nigeria to the coral reefs off Mozambique, mosquito-net fishing is a growing problem, an unintended consequence of one of the biggest and most celebrated public health campaigns in recent years.

The nets have helped save millions of lives, but scientists worry about the collateral damage: Africa’s fish.

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Ocean Life Faces Mass Extinction, Broad Study Says

         

A dead whale in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, in 2011. As container ships multiply, more whales are being harmed, a study said. CreditMarco De Swart/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

CLICK HERE - RESEARCH - Marine defaunation: Animal loss in the global ocean

nytimes.com - by Carl Zimmer - January 15, 2015

A team of scientists, in a groundbreaking analysis of data from hundreds of sources, has concluded that humans are on the verge of causing unprecedented damage to the oceans and the animals living in them.

“We may be sitting on a precipice of a major extinction event,” said Douglas J. McCauley, an ecologist at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and an author of the new research, which was published on Thursday in the journal Science.

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2014 on Track to be Hottest Year on Record

 

 

The temperatures so far in 2014 compared to the top 5 warmest years on record.
Click image to enlarge. Credit: NOAA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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