Breaking Waves: Ocean News

11/12/2019 - 06:41
‘This is our climate emergency’ say residents as fire chiefs warn dangerous conditions to return More than 100 fires continue to rage across eastern Australia, dozens of them running out of control, but the nation escaped its predicted “catastrophic” fire day without further loss of life. However, fire chiefs have warned that despite cooler conditions expected on Wednesday and Thursday, dangerous fire conditions will return late in the week. Continue reading...
11/12/2019 - 05:46
Never mind how many electric cars are sold there – Norway has to change tack and end prospecting for new oil reserves • David Boyd is the UN special rapporteur on the environment and human rights On my official UN visit to Norway in September, I found inspiring examples of leadership on climate change. I encountered a nearly emissions-free electricity system, the highest share of zero-emission vehicle sales in the world (almost half of all new cars sold are fully electric), and billions of dollars being invested in a Green Climate Fund that provides support to developing countries, as well as a burgeoning Climate and Forest Initiative. However, Norway continues to explore for oil and gas at a time when the International Energy Agency and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change concluded that meeting the vital 1.5C target in the Paris agreement requires that the majority of existing fossil fuel reserves cannot be burned. Continue reading...
11/12/2019 - 04:07
Plan intends to make all grands prix fully sustainable by 2025 ‘If F1 can do it then surely anyone can,’ says Green Party Formula One has pledged to deliver on an ambitious programme to address the global climate emergency by going carbon neutral within 11 years. The sport has committed to a plan that not only ensures it has a net carbon impact of zero by 2030 but will also adopt policies to make all grands prix fully sustainable by 2025. Both are bold targets that will not be easily met for a sport which produces 256,000 tons of CO2 each season while transporting 10 teams and equipment to 21 races and with the global calendar set to expand. Continue reading...
11/12/2019 - 03:03
Energy minister to face further questioning over highly inflated travel figures as well as the grasslands saga Angus Taylor will face a further grilling when parliament returns over the origins of a doctored document he says informed a letter blasting the City of Sydney over its travel spending. An estimates spillover hearing on Monday heard his department had prepared a draft that did not include the highly inflated figures and the minister representing him at the hearing refused to answer questions about where they came from. Continue reading...
11/12/2019 - 02:00
Tribal leaders to testify before Congress in battle against Trump administration’s assault on environmental protections Tribal leaders, fishermen and environmentalists from Alaska will testify before Congress on Wednesday in an effort to save America’s biggest national forest – the latest battle against the Trump administration’s assault on environmental protections. The Tongass national forest, one of the world’s last intact temperate rainforests which plays a crucial role in fighting the climate crisis, is under threat of logging as Alaska seeks exemption from the Roadless Rule, which protects millions of acres of pristine forests across the US. The Tongass is considered the “crown jewel” of the national forest system, sequestering huge amounts of carbon dioxide to keep the greenhouse gas out of the atmosphere. Continue reading...
11/12/2019 - 00:00
Young Belgian activists are among the most enthusiastic, but their country is lagging behind on action When Greta Thunberg began her school strike outside the Swedish parliament in 2018, she was alone. Within months, thousands and then millions followed her example. Some of the most enthusiastic school strikers have been in Belgium, inadvertently launching a national movement that bridges the country’s entrenched linguistic divide. Continue reading...
11/11/2019 - 22:38
Hundreds of votes were cast in Russia, but organisers say the email addresses appeared to be legitimate It’s an election that has spawned meme wars, full-size billboards, trash talking between rival campaigns, and now, accusations of Russian electoral fraud. Organisers of New Zealand’s bird of the year contest – a wholesome poll that raises awareness about the plight of native species – have denied claims the 2019 result was marred by fowl play after revealing a high number of votes cast from other countries. “People are coming up with all kinds of theories about Russian involvement in New Zealand elections,” said Megan Hubscher, a spokesperson for Forest and Bird, the independent conservation group that runs the annual vote. “But we can assure everyone that everything seems above board this time around.” Continue reading...
11/11/2019 - 20:23
A range of organisations are asking for financial aid to assist people, communities and wildlife affected by the fires The scale and ferocity of bushfires sweeping NSW and Queensland is testing the resources of firefighters, charities, and animal rescue groups. Many have issued public pleas for financial help, warning of a worsening bushfire threat and a long road to recovery for affected communities. Most organisations are calling for financial donations - rather than donated goods - to help them best meet the varying needs of victims. Here are the main groups working on the ground right now and accepting donations. Continue reading...
11/11/2019 - 19:56
Development has long been given priority over the endangered bird’s welfare – and is set to again with the Carmichael coalmine Vote now for the Australian bird of the year The black-throated finch is a refugee. For decades, progress has forced the small, rotund, patchwork finch to retreat to a few pockets of grassland in central and north Queensland. Now the largest colony will be forcibly moved from the best remaining habitat to make way for Adani’s Carmichael coalmine. Since it was listed as endangered and protected under Australian law, 775 development applications have proposed removing or damaging potential finch habitat. One has been rejected. Continue reading...
11/11/2019 - 19:39
Residents in Sydney and other parts of the east coast advised to stay indoors where possible to avoid air pollution • NSW and Qld fires: army training exercise may have started Gold Coast blaze – live Authorities are warning New South Wales residents not to underestimate the damaging effects of smoke as air quality worsens amid the state’s bushfire crisis. About 80 fires are burning across NSW, filling Sydney’s skies with smoke pollution of “hazardous” proportions, according to the environment department. Continue reading...