Breaking Waves: Ocean News

11/29/2020 - 19:01
£1.6bn subsidies for owning land in England to end, with funds going to improve nature Wildlife, nature and the climate will benefit from the biggest shake-up in farming policy in England for 50 years, according to government plans. The £1.6bn subsidy farmers receive every year for simply owning land will be phased out by 2028, with the funds used instead to pay them to restore wild habitats, create new woodlands, boost soils and cut pesticide use. Continue reading...
11/29/2020 - 11:30
Angus Taylor’s dire warnings about abandoning coal are going unheeded as the states forge their own path towards renewables There may have been other weeks that packed in as many transformative developments in clean energy in Australia as the past seven days, but they don’t come often. On Friday, the New South Wales parliament passed laws to build 12 gigawatts of clean energy – roughly equivalent to the country’s entire existing large-scale renewable capacity – and 2GW of energy storage in the state over the next decade. Continue reading...
11/29/2020 - 04:15
The case for the high speed rail line was heavily dependent on a projected increase in business travel The case for a complete rethink of public transport priorities in the aftermath of Covid-19 – including a fresh look at arguments for and against the HS2 high speed rail line – is to be the subject of a major parliamentary inquiry beginning this week. The pandemic has led to a dramatic fall in commuting into towns and cities, as well as a national financial crisis highlighted last Wednesday by the chancellor Rishi Sunak in his spending review. Pressure to reduce carbon emissions is also raising questions about the desirability of the £27bn road-building programme. Continue reading...
11/29/2020 - 03:45
The tiny freeloaders may be considered disgusting by many but new research shows they are crucial in shaping ecosystems The leech craze of the 1800s put parasites on the map. Collectors (usually women and sometimes old horses) would stand in ponds waiting for medicinal leeches to come and suck their blood. They were then picked off and sold for bloodletting. The parasites were so popular that by the early 1900s they were nearly extinct, and there was a coordinated effort to save them. Even so, the European medicinal leech, Hirudo medicinalis, has been labelled as near threatened on the IUCN red list since 1996, and remains one of the few parasites with formal protections. Continue reading...
11/29/2020 - 03:15
What would Marx say? Visitor centre and cafe planned for historic London burial ground to capitalise on growing public appetite for genealogy while raising vital funds for upkeep It’s a development that its most famous occupant might have predicted, even if it would have him spinning in his well-visited grave. North London’s Highgate cemetery, final resting place of Karl Marx, is to undergo a makeover to enhance its visitor experience. In addition to a spot of landscaping, it will have an exhibition space, a separate gift shop and possibly a cafe. Continue reading...
11/28/2020 - 14:00
Analysis: The PM changed tone as soon as Joe Biden was projected likely next US president. Will a policy pivot follow? Scott Morrison’s language about Australia adopting an emissions reduction target of net zero by 2050, and about climate action more generally, is starting to warm up. The recent shift in the prime minister’s language invites two questions: is there a pivot under way, and is the shift real? Continue reading...
11/28/2020 - 03:00
Archie Thomas stumbled across solitary windfall fruit that could be cross between cultivated apple and European crab apple A chance find of an apple on a woodland run has led one nature lover to discover a new variety that he hopes to propagate and name. Archie Thomas, who lives in the Nadder valley in Wiltshire, stumbled across a solitary windfall apple on a wooded trackway alongside a large area of ancient woodland near his home this month. Continue reading...
11/28/2020 - 02:00
Home owners can get help from government schemes but do they really cut costs? When Graham Davidson and his wife, Pauline, retired to a bungalow in Norfolk three years ago they ripped out the old boiler and replaced it with an air source heat pump at a cost of £10,000. But this pricey replacement has turned into a moneyspinner for the Davidsons – and millions of British households are likely to follow suit in what is expected to be a revolution in home heating. Davidson, 68, who used to work in the car electronics business, says it was financial gain rather than saving the planet that was at the forefront of his decision. But dumping the gas boiler has probably cut his household carbon emissions by more than half. Continue reading...
11/27/2020 - 15:25
Exclusive: ACF has been cautioned its charity status prevents it ‘opposing a political candidate’ over letter calling out climate change inaction The Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission has fired a warning shot at the Australian Conservation Foundation, asking the environment group to “immediately read the guide on political advocacy” and consider withdrawing an open letter of complaint about Angus Taylor’s lack of action on climate change. In correspondence seen by Guardian Australia, the ACNC has expressed objection to a climate change open letter to Scott Morrison published in early November on the ACF’s website. Continue reading...
11/27/2020 - 14:53
Deep discounts spark outrage on Twitter as campaigners highlight environmental cost Clothing retailers have come under fire for selling dresses from just 8p on Black Friday, with critics accusing them of encouraging “fast fashion” and unsustainable consumption. Related: Boohoo hires Sir Brian Leveson to oversee supply chain overhaul Continue reading...