Ecosystems

China's Earthquake After Shock
May 16, 2008 09:26 AM - , Global Policy Innovations Program

One of the deadliest earthquakes in decades hit southwestern China this week, prompting a quick response from Beijing which was even praised by the Dalai Lama. Nevertheless, the death toll could surpass 50,000. Devin Stewart of Policy Innovations interviews Alexandra Harney, author of The China Price: The True Cost of Chinese Competitive Advantage, who comments from Shanghai on how China is tackling this obstacle as it also prepares for the Summer Olympics.

Global Call to Stop the Planting of Genetically Engineered Trees
May 16, 2008 09:13 AM - , Organic Consumers Association

Bonn, Germany--Organizations and scientists from around the world spoke today about their opposition to genetically engineered trees which will be negotiated at the UN Convention on Biological Diversity's Ninth Conference of the Parties (CBD COP-9) beginning next week in Bonn. They are demanding that governments at the UN agree to accept the proposal to suspend all releases of genetically engineered (GE) trees into the environment, due to their extreme ecological and social threats.

An epidemic of extinctions: Decimation of life on earth
May 16, 2008 08:40 AM - http://www.independent.co.uk

The world's species are declining at a rate "unprecedented since the extinction of the dinosaurs", a census of the animal kingdom has revealed. The Living Planet Index out today shows the devastating impact of humanity as biodiversity has plummeted by almost a third in the 35 years to 2005.

World species dying out like flies says WWF
May 16, 2008 07:24 AM - Reuters

World biodiversity has declined by almost one third in the past 35 years due mainly to habitat loss and the wildlife trade, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) said on Friday It warned that climate change would add increasingly to the wildlife woes over the next three decades.

China quake may cut carbon offset supply
May 15, 2008 09:29 AM - Reuters

China's deadliest earthquake in decades could cut by up to 5 percent the country's supply of carbon offsets under the Kyoto Protocol over the next 12 months, a market China dominates, Lehman analysts estimated on Thursday. Rich countries can meet Kyoto greenhouse gas limits by investing in emissions cuts in developing countries, earning carbon offsets in return.

NASA study links Earth impacts to human-caused climate change
May 15, 2008 09:21 AM - NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

A new NASA-led study shows human-caused climate change has made an impact on a wide range of Earth's natural systems, including permafrost thawing, plants blooming earlier across Europe, and lakes declining in productivity in Africa. Cynthia Rosenzweig of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Science in New York and scientists at 10 other institutions have linked physical and biological impacts since 1970 with rises in temperatures during that period.

Restoring fish populations leads to tough choice for Great Lakes Gulls
May 15, 2008 09:19 AM - Ecological Society of America

You might think that stocking the Great Lakes with things like trout and salmon would be good for the herring gull. The birds often eat from the water, so it would be natural to assume that more fish would mean better dining. But a new report published in the April journal of Ecology by the Ecological Society of America says that the addition of species such as exotic salmon and trout to the area has not been good for the birds, demonstrating that fishery management actions can sometimes have very unexpected outcomes.

Polar bears listed as U.S. threatened species
May 14, 2008 07:47 PM - Reuters

Polar bears were listed on Wednesday as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act because their sea ice habitat is melting away. But the new protection was not accompanied by any proposals to address either climate change, which environmentalists say causes the deterioration of the bears' habitat, or drilling in the Arctic for the fossil fuels that spur the climate-warming greenhouse effect.

OPINION: Water Trading in China: A Step Toward Sustainability
May 14, 2008 09:09 AM - , Worldwatch Institute

In recent years, scarcity and pollution of water have become the paramount environmental woe in China. Numerous reports and books have exposed China's water crisis, depicting a nation suffering in the face of black-running rivers and dried-up waterways. Nationwide, the per capita availability of fresh water is only one-quarter of the world average.

White House vs White Bear: Bush Must Decide Whether To Save The Polar Bear As The Ice Melts
May 14, 2008 09:01 AM - , Organic Consumers Association

It's a classic stand-off between one of the world's best loved animals and one of its most unpopular leaders, between the planet's largest bear and its most powerful man. And it comes to a head this week. On Thursday, by order of a federal judge, George W Bush must stop stalling on whether to designate the polar bear as a species endangered by global warming. The designation could have huge consequences for his climate-change policies; his administration would, by law, have to avoid doing anything that would "jeopardise the continued existence" of the mammal whose habitat is melting away.

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