Emphasis on conifer forests places multiple species at risk
August 27, 2007 07:54 AM - Oregon State University
The traditional emphasis on dense, fast-growing, conifer-dominated forests in the Pacific Northwest raises questions about the health of dozens of animal species that depend on shrubs, herbs and broad-leaf trees, a new analysis by Oregon State University and the U.S. Geological Survey suggests. At least 78 vertebrate species have been documented that require, in one way or another, the food or habitat provided by non-coniferous vegetation, and may be at increasing risk whenever forest management reduces the prevalence of these shrubs or trees, or specifically targets them for removal.
Promoting Water Security in the Pacific
August 27, 2007 07:45 AM - The World Conservation Union
Managing and protecting freshwater resources is of vital importance for the Pacific region’s health and wealth. A recent mission by the IUCN Water Programme is leading to the development of the Nadi River Catchment area, to help both secure water supply and prevent downstream flooding.
Polluted China rivers threaten "sixth" of population
August 27, 2007 07:15 AM - Reuters
Polluters along two of China's main rivers have defied a decade-old clean-up effort, leaving much of the water unfit to touch, let alone drink, and a risk to a sixth of the population, state media said on Monday. Half the check points along the Huai River and its tributaries in central and eastern China showed pollution of "Grade 5" or worse -- the top of the dial in key toxins, meaning that the water was unfit for human contact and may not be fit even for irrigation, national legislators were told.
N.Korea Floods Left 600 People Dead Or Missing
August 26, 2007 04:38 PM - Jon Herskovitz, Reuters
SEOUL - Some of the worst flooding to hit North Korea in decades has killed at least 600 people, double the previous known toll, the official news agency said at the weekend.
Greek Fires Kill 56, Threaten Ancient Olympia
August 26, 2007 04:17 PM - Vassilis Triandafyllou, reuters
ANCIENT OLYMPIA, Greece - Firefighters battled to save ancient Olympia on Sunday as Greece's worst forest fires in decades ravaged hills around the historic site and the death toll rose to 56. Thick black smoke billowed above the ancient ruins as dense pine and cypress woods burned around the site of the first Olympic Games and fire brigades evacuated nearby villages on Greece's southern Peloponnese peninsula.
Scientists To Launch Polar Grid Research With Massive Computer Network
August 25, 2007 06:29 PM - Indiana University
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Researchers from Indiana University create a cyberinfrastructure that will help scientists better understand the current and future state of polar ice sheets. The Polar Grid project will transform U.S. capabilities in ice sheet research. With this technology, it will be possible to collect, examine and analyze data -- and then use the results of such analysis to optimize data collection strategies -- all during the course of a single expedition. This will help scientists more quickly gain understanding about the potential impact of rising sea levels and how they relate to global climate change, a problem of urgent importance.
France Halts Livestock Movement, Blue Tongue Disease Outbreak Blamed
August 25, 2007 05:06 PM - Reuters
PARIS - The French Agriculture Ministry said on Saturday it had extended restrictions on livestock movements to 19 regions from 17 following the discovery of two new cases of blue tongue in animals near the German border.
Greece Declares Nationwide Emergency, Wild Fires Death Toll At 46, Rising
August 25, 2007 04:55 PM - Vassilis Triandafyllou, Reuters
ZACHARO, Greece - The Greek government declared a nationwide state of emergency on Saturday after raging forest fires killed at least 46 people and trapped many more in villages surrounded by flames. Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis said the rash of forest fires "can't be a coincidence". He vowed the culprits, an apparent reference to arsonists, would be found and punished.
German Chancellor: Climate At Top Of Agenda
August 25, 2007 10:18 AM - Madeline Chambers, Reuters
BERLIN - German Chancellor Angela Merkel pledged on Friday to fight climate change and tackle the skills shortage in Europe's biggest economy in the second half of her government's term, but critics said her plan lacked ambition.
Judge Clears Way For Noriega's French Extradition
August 24, 2007 06:19 PM - Tom Brown, Reuters
MIAMI - A U.S. judge on Friday denied former Panamanian strongman Manuel Noriega's demand for a speedy return home when his U.S. prison term ends next month and said nothing stood in the way of a French extradition request. Noriega's defense attorneys argued in court this month that his designation as a "prisoner of war" after his arrest during the U.S. invasion of Panama more than 17 years ago entitled him to immediate repatriation after his scheduled release from a Florida prison on September 9.