User: newstrust Topic: NewsTrust Environment
Category: Biodiversity :: Biodiversity
Last updated: Jan 19 2017 09:08 IST RSS 2.0
 
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Tyrant in the code 19.1.2017 techCrunch
 Mankind has a complex relationship with the notion of Artificial Intelligence. Tinged with both fear and fascination; the timeline for AI development is punctuated by cultural and historical events that have brought with them new speculation and theories. Mechanical men and artificial beings were a prevalent feature of Greek myth, including the golden robots of Hephaestus and… Read ...
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Endangered bighorn sheep sharing a controversial lush life on the greens at La Quinta's desert golf courses 16.1.2017 LA Times: Commentary
LA QUINTA, Calif. - This is a sunbaked oasis of walled and gated neighborhoods, chic boutique hotels and verdant golf courses at the base of the rugged Santa Rosa Mountains. So officials were caught off guard by a divisive controversy that erupted in 2012 after large numbers of federally endangered...
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Feds weigh petition asking for whale protection zone 14.1.2017 AP Washington
SEATTLE (AP) -- The federal government is considering a petition that calls for a whale protection zone on the west side of Washington's San Juan Island....
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Feds weighing petition calling for whale protection zone 13.1.2017 AP Washington
SEATTLE (AP) -- The federal government is weighing a petition calling for a whale protection zone on the west side of Washington's San Juan Island....
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Utah's New National Monument Marks Big Win for the Protection of Indigenous Cultural Sites 12.1.2017 Truthout - All Articles
On Dec. 28, with only 22 days left in office, President Obama set aside nearly 1.35 million acres in southeastern Utah's San Juan County as the Bears Ears National Monument. The  announcement  capped several years of work by a unique tribal coalition that proposed this first-in-the-nation monument to be comanaged by tribes and the federal government. Obama also designated 300,000 acres at Gold Butte in Nevada, homelands of the Paiute people, ironically, near militant rancher Cliven Bundy's cattle operation. What is the value of land? The national monument -- proposed by the Bears Ears Inter-tribal Coalition, which includes the Navajo Nation, the Pueblo of Zuni, the Ute Mountain Ute, Ute tribe, and Hopi tribe -- will preserve an area rich in biodiversity and human history amid one of the country's most iconic landscapes. It, and the political battle that continues to stem from it, also raises a greater question for a nation at odds with itself: What is the value of land? This is at the heart of land ...
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Environmental groups plan to sue feds over PolyMet mine's impacts on wolves, lynx 11.1.2017 Minnesota Public Radio: News
Groups have filed a notice of intent to sue the U.S. Forest Service and Fish and Wildlife Service arguing the proposed mine would destroy critical habitat for the threatened species.
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Polar bear plan doesn't seek direct action on climate change 10.1.2017 AP National
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) -- Five years ago, in a meeting room in Alaska, two dozen federal wildlife biologists joined other experts to begin formulating a recovery plan for polar bears because the animals' primary habitat, sea ice, was melting beneath their feet in summer....
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Rolly: Private land grab in rural Utah may be a sign of things to come 10.1.2017 Salt Lake Tribune
A recent Salt Lake Tribune story about a private company buying state land — and then gating off a county road intersecting the property — should raise alarms about the Utah Legislature’s efforts to gain control over federally managed public acres. The story noted that Lyman Family Farm LLC acquired a 391-acre parcel in San Juan County from the Utah School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration (SITLA), which sold the property at an auction last October. The now-blocked-off parcel traditio... <iframe src="http://www.sltrib.com/csp/mediapool/sites/sltrib/pages/garss.csp" height="1" width="1" > </frame>
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Without action on climate change, say goodbye to polar bears 9.1.2017 Salt Lake Tribune
As the Arctic warms faster than any other place on the planet and sea ice declines, there is only one sure way to save polar bears from extinction, the government announced Monday: decisive action on climate change. In a final plan to save an animal that greatly depends on ice to catch prey and survive, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service identified the rapid decline of sea ice as “the primary threat to polar bears” and said “the single most important achievement for polar bear conservation is de... <iframe src="http://www.sltrib.com/csp/mediapool/sites/sltrib/pages/garss.csp" height="1" width="1" > </frame>
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Beavers, imports from Canada, are threatening primeval forests of Patagonia 6.1.2017 LA Times: Commentary

It seemed like a good idea at the time.

Transplanting 25 pairs of Canadian beavers to Tierra del Fuego would provide raw material for a fur industry, bring jobs to a sparsely populated region and — as an advertisement in 1946 suggested — possibly attract tourists to this remote part of the hemisphere...

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Letter: Noel is not right to be the new BLM director 5.1.2017 Salt Lake Tribune
The recent article in The Salt Lake Tribune about Rep. Mike Noel seeking to become the next director of the Bureau of Land Management is cause for concern. The public lands in Utah and other Western states are of increasing value for the resources they provide for all users. Those values include important commodity resources, such as oil and gas, solar and wind energy, timber, livestock grazing and water. However, noncommodity resources are just as important, and include recreation, wildlife, w...
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Construction of Dangerous Coastal Jaitapur Nuclear Power Mega-Plant Should Be Stopped 3.1.2017 Truthout.com
Sometimes large segments of the human race seem to contract collective amnesia. That is apparently the case with the already-approved, Jaitapur Nuclear Power Project on India's west coast. But if one thing's for sure, it's that greed for electricity profits knows no bounds -- or borders for that matter. The green-lighted 9,900 megawatt plan, if carried out, will be the world's largest nuclear power facility. The "nuclear park" would contain six massive 1650 megawatt reactors, courtesy of Électricité de France (EDF), and would be operator by government-owned Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL). EDF, which is about 84% owned by the French government, is the largest electricity company in the world, and took over the project from Areva NP, another French government-owned company, after it bought a majority stake in Areva in July of 2015. It is the opinion of the EnviroNews USA Editorial Board, that this project should never be allowed to see the light of day. Here's why: The Technology Is ...
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We'll Never See These Animals Again 31.12.2016 Mother Jones
If 2016 was a rough year for the animal kingdom, 2017 could be worse. Most scientists agree that we are experiencing a sixth mass extinction, but unlike the previous five that extended over hundreds of millions of years and occurred because of cataclysmic natural disasters, humans are responsible for this one. Climate change, agricultural expansion , wildlife crime, pollution, and disease have created a shocking acceleration in the disappearance of species. The World Wildlife Fund recently predicted that more than two-thirds of the vertebrate population—mammals, birds, fish, amphibians, and reptiles—would be lost over the next three years if extinctions continue at the current rate. A 2015 study that appeared in the journal Science Advances suggests that the rate of vertebrate extinction has increased nearly 100 times. Paul Ehrlich, a professor of population studies at Stanford University and a co-author of the study, notes half the life forms that people know about are already extinct. Another study, ...
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Cheetahs are experiencing alarming declines and should be listed as endangered, scientists say 29.12.2016 LA Times: Commentary

Cheetahs may have once prospered, but they certainly aren’t anymore.

Scientists examining the worldwide population of these swift, spotted cats have found that there are only 7,100 left in the wild, surviving on just 9% of their original land range — and that they should be upgraded from “vulnerable” to...

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It’s about Time: Reading Steampunk’s Rise and Roots 28.12.2016 Boing Boing
Every Labor Day weekend, more than 70,000 fans of science fiction, fantasy, comic books, and more descend on Atlanta, Georgia, for Dragon*Con. One of the highlights of the convention each year is the parade that features attendees marching down Peachtree Street, dressed in their best costumes to cheering throngs of observers—around 75,000 of them in 2015, and the numbers keep growing. A group of high elves from The Lord of the Rings will be followed by Disney princesses and villains who are in turn followed by twenty different Doctor Whos, each of them dressing as their personal favorite of the twelve different incarnations of the Doctor. Throughout the parade one sees Indiana Jones, Han Solo, Captain Jack Sparrow, and Edward Scissorhands, often walking next to one another. There are fairies, dwarves, storm troopers, and zombies—literal hordes of them. And there are steampunks. Men, women, and even some children march by in Victorian topcoats, spats, cravats, bowlers, bustles, crinolines, and lace ...
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Thanks, Obama, for all those new national monuments 27.12.2016 Daily Kos
It has delighted many Americans and upset others, but President Barack Obama has designated more national monuments than any of his predecessors in the 110 years the Antiquities Act has given presidents authority to protect places of cultural, historical, geological and archaeological significance.  Conservationist President Theodore Roosevelt first used the act in 1906 to designate Devils Tower National Monument in Wyoming, and in 1908 the Grand Canyon, which Congress later redesignated as the Grand Canyon National Park, and 16 other sites. Since then, other presidents have used the authority granted them under the Antiquities Act to protect unique natural and historic features throughout America. Roosevelt and President Bill Clinton held the previous records for most monuments established, but Obama now leads in that department, having established 25 new ones and enlarged three others. Critics, as shown by this screed  of a propagandist from the Heartland Institute, have a big problem with Obama’s ...
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Community Rights: A Key to Conservation in Central America 25.12.2016 Truthout - All Articles
Uaxactún, Guatemala -- Research has shown that indigenous peoples and local communities play a key role in biodiversity and forest conservation in Central America and Mexico. Drawing on case studies from across the region, a new report adds to the mounting evidence that securing and implementing indigenous and community rights to their lands and forests effectively reduces deforestation and bolsters the protection of biodiversity. The report, Conservation and Community Rights: Lessons from Mesoamerica , was authored by the PRISMA Foundation, an environmental and development research center based in El Salvador. The publication was released in Mexico City, coinciding with the thirteenth conference of the parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity, which took place December 4 to 17 in Cancun. Promising success stories are examined in the report, including community forest management in northern Guatemala and indigenous conservation in eastern Panama. The report asserts the region is uniquely ...
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A black bear boom has townfolk wondering how they'd get along with grizzlies 23.12.2016 LA Times: Commentary

THREE RIVERS, Calif.  It was two years back, toward the end of summer, that the bears came. Families of them. Droves of them. More of them than most residents of this small Tulare County town of 2,500 ever had the pleasure of watching frolic in the Kaweah River or the frustration of seeing topple...

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With an Enemy Like Trump, Climate Activists Should Look Beyond the Paris Accord 22.12.2016 Truthout - All Articles
Trump's announcement that he intends to withdraw the US from the Paris Agreement has generated outrage worldwide. But many climate activists who find such carbon-trading-dependent agreements woefully insufficient believe it's time for people worldwide to take the climate fight local, like at Standing Rock. President Obama, center right, joining other leaders for a photo at the UN climate change conference in Le Bourget, near Paris, on Novvember 30, 2015. (Photo: Stephen Crowley / The New York Times) The first local environmental campaign I ever got involved in was against Donald Trump. I was living in Aberdeen, Scotland, when, in March 2006 Trump announced his plans to convert one of my favorite nature sites north of Aberdeen into a golf course, hotel and housing complex. Menie Estate, which he had acquired, lay at the heart of a landscape and ecosystem unique within Scotland : a large expanse of shifting sand dunes, home to a diverse community of plants found only on acidic, sandy soils, and well known ...
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Open thread for night owls: #Earth2Trump plans 16-city 'resistance roadshow' starting January 2 21.12.2016 Daily Kos
Andrea Germanos at Common Dreams writes— #Earth2Trump: Campaign Kicking Off to Galvanize Resistance Under the banner of  #Earth2Trump , a campaign to resist the upcoming administration’s “dangerous agenda” is gearing up to take its message nationwide. The “resistance roadshow,” spearheaded by the conservation organization Center for Biological Diversity,  kicks off  Jan. 2, 2017 in Oakland, Calif. and Seattle, and will bring speakers and musicians to 13 other cities before ending on Jan. 20—inauguration day—in Washington, D.C. It’s aimed at “rallying and empowering defenders of civil rights and the environment” to galvanize a network of resistance. The  call-to-action  states: “We must stand and oppose every Trump policy that hurts wildlife; poisons our air and water; destroys our climate; promotes racism, misogyny or homophobia; and marginalizes entire segments of our society.” The call to resist such attacks are well-founded, given that, among other things,  Donald Trump  has made clear that ...
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