Pollution

China sets 2030 target to clean up lakes
January 22, 2008 09:17 AM - Reuters

Beijing has ordered officials to halt a trend of worsening contamination by the end of this decade, and ensure anyone pumping pollution into the lakes has a permit, the report said, citing orders from the country's State Council or cabinet.

Trash crisis piles pressure on Italy minister
January 21, 2008 12:06 PM - Reuters

ROME (Reuters) - Italy's environment minister faces a close vote on a motion blaming him for Naples' garbage crisis, with calls from members of the ruling centre-left coalition and the opposition for his resignation. The Senate, where Prime Minister Romano Prodi has only a two-seat majority, will vote on the motion on Wednesday after mountains of rubbish have piled up in the streets of Italy's third biggest city.

Finland tells Nord Stream to study alternative routes
January 21, 2008 10:42 AM - Reuters

Finland insists the Nord Stream consortium conduct a thorough environmental impact study of an alternative, southern route for its planned gas pipeline under the Baltic Sea, the environment ministry said on Monday. Nord Stream, majority owned by Russian gas export monopoly Gazprom, plans to start building the 1,200 km (750 mile) long gas pipeline from Russia to Germany in mid-2009 and begin deliveries in early 2011.

Greenhouse gases at new peak in sign of Asia growth
January 20, 2008 05:54 AM - Reuters

TROLL STATION, Antarctica (Reuters) - Atmospheric levels of the main greenhouse gas have set another new peak in a sign of the industrial rise of Asian economies led by China, a senior scientist said on Saturday. "The levels already in January are higher than last year," said Kim Holmen, research director of the Norwegian Polar Institute, during a visit to the Troll scientific research station in Antarctica by Norway's Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg.

EU to set Finland 38 percent renewables goal: report
January 19, 2008 08:18 PM - Reuters

HELSINKI (Reuters) - The European Commission will ask Finland to increase its renewable energy output by around a third to 38 percent in draft proposals to be unveiled next week, Finnish public broadcaster YLE said on Saturday. The Commission is due to spell out on Wednesday how it intends to cut greenhouse gas emissions responsible for climate change, share out the burden of cuts in carbon dioxide (CO2) and increase the use of renewable energy sources.

Japanese Paper Industry in Recycling Scandal
January 18, 2008 10:10 AM - , Environmental Graffiti

Two major players in the Japanese paper industry have been left with egg on their face after admitting they lied about the amount of recycled paper in their products. Several days ago Nippon Paper Group, the second largest paper company in Japan, admitted it had lied about the percentage of recycled material in its products. Oji Paper, the country’s biggest paper company, revealed that it too had lied about the recycled content of its paper today.

Hybrid school buses hit the road
January 17, 2008 09:54 AM - Iowa State University

You’ve got to be careful with the accelerator because hybrid school buses like to go. Dan Taghon, the director of transportation for the Sigourney Community School District in southeast Iowa, said his district’s new hybrid bus has been running routes since Jan. 3. And Taghon, who drives the bus on one of the district’s six routes, said he likes the 65-passenger machine powered by an electric motor and a V-8 diesel engine.

Norway says aims to go carbon neutral by 2030
January 17, 2008 07:51 AM - Reuters

OSLO (Reuters) - Norway, which last year set what it called the world's most ambitious target for cutting greenhouse gas emissions, said on Thursday it aimed to go "carbon neutral" in 2030, which is 20 years earlier than its previous target. The new target was set when the Labour-led coalition government reached agreement with three opposition parties to bring the goal forward from 2050.

In the Trenches for Clean Water
January 16, 2008 09:26 AM - Saul Garlick, Global Policy Innovations Program

Water, our most basic need, is poised to be the most baffling challenge of the 21st century. It is being ignored wantonly at a time when more than 1 million people per year die from its scarcity and contamination. Children under age five account for at least 90 percent of water-related deaths. Meanwhile, economic productivity and educational opportunities are lost to illness, leaving millions more in an impoverished state even if they do survive their first five years of life. Access to water is a human right. Yet that statement makes many people uncomfortable. Most in the developed world can hardly imagine water being anything more than a nominal expense that is easily drawn from a faucet. They think, "Surely it is a commodity to be bought and sold. It hardly costs anything, and it is even reusable, so what's the big deal?"

Air pollution at historic highs in China's Guangdong
January 15, 2008 11:37 PM - Reuters

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Air pollution in the southern Chinese province of Guangdong increased markedly last year, with 27 major cities and counties suffering a record number of hazy days, Xinhua news agency said on Wednesday. China's industrial heartland of Guangdong, which borders Hong Kong, recorded an average of 75.7 days of haze in 2007, the highest level since the Communists came to power in 1949 and a "marked increase" over normal years, according to a new report released by Guangdong's meteorological bureau, Xinhua said.

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