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Improving the Environment

A proposed rule by the EPA to limit science was met with opposition at a public hearing this week. (Robinson Meyer, The Atlantic)

It “risks not just erosion of public trust in the EPA’s important work, but also progress on improving the health and wellbeing of our communities and our nation….” More…

Acting on Climate

Another impact to our natural environment from climate change: the cedar forests of Lebanon and its ecosystems are threatened by climate change. (Anne Barnard, New York Times)

“The cedar forest is migrating to higher altitudes,” he said. And it is unclear, he added, which of the species that usually live alongside the cedars will survive higher up, further changing the ecosystem…. “We are in a race,” said Dr. Hani. “There is no time to lose….” More…

It’s nature to the rescue, as coastal cities are fighting against sea level rise and erosion. (John Upton, Climate Central)

Rising costs from flooding and erosion are prompting Americans, military bases and government agencies to opt for more natural alternatives. State and federal governments are changing permitting rules and taking other steps to encourage the switch, which can improve water quality, support fisheries and protect against storms and rising seas…. More….

A new Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) report on extreme weather events fails to mention climate change and its impact on such events. (Emily Atkin, The New Republic)

FEMA is certainly correct that disasters must be managed at all levels, but the most important lesson of the 2017 disaster season is that weather disasters are becoming more frequent and more damaging. The government’s failure to grapple with that reality contributed to FEMA’s poor response. For example, the 1988 Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act—the law that gave FEMA its authority to coordinate disaster relief efforts—ensured that the agency could only re-build Puerto Rico’s weak electricity system after it was wiped out by Maria; it was not allowed to spend money on rebuilding a more resilient electricity system… More…

Ending Plastic Pollution

The Marriott hotel chain announced it would stop using plastic straws and drink stirrers. (Avie Schneider, NPR)

It said the environmentally friendly move could eliminate the use of more than 1 billion plastic straws and about 250 million stirrers per year. Marriott said its hotels will “offer alternative straws upon request.” More…

Protecting Life on Earth

The Interior and Commerce Departments have proposed changes to weaken the Endangered Species Act. (Darryl Fears, Washington Post)

“Unfortunately, the sweeping changes being proposed by the Trump administration include provisions that would undercut the effectiveness of the ESA and put species at risk of extinction,” Clark said. “The signal being sent by the Trump administration is clear: Protecting America’s wildlife and wild lands is simply not on their agenda….” More…

The Trump Administration nominated a pesticide executive for the role of as chief scientist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). (Tom Phillpot, Huffington Post)

…before the DuPont merger, he served as global director for crop protection research and development at Dow AgroSciences. “Crop protection,” of course, means pesticides — a category that includes bug killers (pesticides), weed killers (herbicides), and fungus killers (fungicides). In his role as chief scientist — formally known as undersecretary for research, education, and economics — Hutchins would set the agenda for the USDA’s $2.9 billion research budget…. More…

The post EDN Week in Review: Environmental News for the Week of July 15 appeared first on Earth Day Network.

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The first Earth Day in 1970 spurred great change, including the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency.

For the EPA to do its job, it must be guided by science. For this reason, we must object to the recently proposed rules to limit the use of scientific studies to influence policies. The public health is at risk from such a propsal.

Now is the time to mobilize and to take action. The public is permitted to submit comments about the EPA’s proposed plan to restrict the use of data needed to inform policies that would protect the American public. (More on that here.)

Please join us in demanding that the EPA withdraw its proposal to limit science.

Join us in asking the EPA to step up and listen to the needs of the public, not lobbyists from the fossil fuel and chemical industries. Join us in demanding that the EPA respect science, and accept trusted and valuable data in making decisions to protect human health and the environment.

The post Action Alert: Demand the EPA Withdraw Its Proposal to Limit Science appeared first on Earth Day Network.

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Improving the Environment

A new study links air pollution with an increase in hospital visits. (Matthew Taylor, Guardian)

Study: Air pollution leads to spikes in health problems and drives up hospital admissions and visits, via @guardianeco https://t.co/u7WGsdGSpQ #ActOnClimate #EarthDayEveryDay

— Earth Day Network (@EarthDayNetwork) July 11, 2018

Acting on Climate

Clean Money: Ireland announced it is divesting from fossil fuels. (Damian Carrington, Guardian)

“The [divestment] movement is highlighting the need to stop investing in the expansion of a global industry which must be brought into managed decline if catastrophic climate change is to be averted,” said Thomas Pringle, the independent member of parliament who introduced the bill. “Ireland by divesting is sending a clear message that the Irish public and the international community are ready to think and act beyond narrow short term vested interests….” More…

Heat Is On: More global heat waves broke records. (Jonathan Watts, Guardian)

The past month has seen power shortages in California as record heat forced a surge of demand for air conditioners. Algeria has experienced the hottest temperature ever reliably registered in Africa. Britain, meanwhile, has experienced its third longest heatwave, melting the roof of a science building in Glasgow and exposing ancient hill forts in Wales…. More…

Speak Up: We need to talk more about climate change impacts.

Out of 127 ABC, CBS and NBC news segments about blistering heat across the U.S., just one mentioned climate change — despite climate change’s important role in amplifying heat waves. https://t.co/dfCdh9soE4

— John Upton (@johnupton) July 12, 2018

Ending Plastic Pollution

Good Business: Starbuck announced it was going to stop offering disposable plastic straws. (Christina Caron, New York Times) Also: EDN’s President, Kathleen Rogers, in USA Today on the news.

“By nature, the straw isn’t recyclable and the lid is, so we feel this decision is more sustainable and more socially responsible,” Chris Milne, director of packaging sourcing for Starbucks, said in a statement…. More…

People keep saying the Starbucks plastic straw phase-out is insignificant to solving the ocean plastics crisis. I think that’s wrong. My latest:https://t.co/S96g2NLZll

— Emily Atkin (@emorwee) July 10, 2018

National Action: Odisha in India announced plans to ban plastic. (Meera Mohanty, The Economic Times)

Protecting Life on Earth

New world heritage sites were named. (Gulnaz Khan, National Geographic)

Nominees must meet one of 10 criteria—six cultural and four natural—ranging from Earth’s most biodiverse landscapes to artistic works of universal significance. This year, the committee recognized 19 new sites for their “outstanding universal value,” extended the boundaries of Central Sikhote-Alin, a Russian biosphere reserve, and removed the Belize Barrier Reef from the List of World Heritage in Danger…. More…

The killing of a blue whale reveals how disconnected we are from nature | Philip Hoare https://t.co/gh0CVGajEq

— Philip Hoare (@philipwhale) July 13, 2018

The post EDN Week in Review: Environmental News for the Week of July 8 appeared first on Earth Day Network.

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Improving the Environment

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt resigned following reports of countless ethics violations. (Brady Dennis and Juliet Eilperin, Washington Post) His successor, Andrew Wheeler, is not expected to protect our environment either (NPR).

EPA Resignation cartoon: https://t.co/8oNOjWq1Ex #Pruitt #EPA #Trump #GlobalWarming #pollution #environment #ScottPruitt #ScottPruittResigns pic.twitter.com/jAHolw781f

— Rob Rogers (@Rob_Rogers) July 6, 2018

Environmental rules being rolled back under Donald Trump:
Air pollution & emissions: 18
Drilling & extraction: 17
Infrastructure & planning: 12
Animals: 9
Toxic substances & safety: 7
Water pollution: 6
Other: 7
Total: 76https://t.co/TqFOm2gm8N

— NYT Climate (@nytclimate) July 6, 2018

Pope Francis warned against turning Earth into a wasteland (Associated Press) as he marked the third anniversary of his Encyclical on the Environment, Laudato Si

“There is a real danger that we will leave future generations only rubble, deserts and refuse,” he warned.

Acting on Climate

The Netherlands is considering national climate legislation that includes the goal to be 100 percent carbon-neutral 2050. (David Roberts, Vox)

The proposal represents a degree of social and political consensus that is almost unthinkable in the US — not only that climate change is “real” (an absurd debate only the US is having), but that it’s urgent and that national policy should support the goals agreed to in Paris. Those goals obligate developed countries like the Netherlands to virtually eliminate carbon emissions by mid-century.

Again, there were more record-setting heat days reported across the globe.

Remarkable forecast from @NWSLosAngeles due to heat dome: “Today will be one for the record books. Almost all if not all of the daily records will fall. It is likely that several monthly records will fall & possible 1 or 2 all time records.” Details: https://t.co/cercisExYv pic.twitter.com/tXDRUms0WD

— Capital Weather Gang (@capitalweather) July 6, 2018

You can use the Three-month Temperature Outlooks found in our Data Snapshots to see what the chances are for a warmer or cooler than usual July-September. https://t.co/sRvmS4Hfx3 pic.twitter.com/ShLZ5jITDp

— NOAA Climate.gov (@NOAAClimate) July 6, 2018

There’s more concern about the connection between climate change and wildfire season with California’s latest heat waves and wildfires (Tim Arango, New York Times)

A steel bridge in Chicago was so hot it stopped working (Anna Brooks, Popular Science)

The 98-year-old double-decker bridge shuttles two levels of traffic back and forth over the Chicago River, and opens its decks to the heavens to let sailboats pass through. Baking under the sun for days on end, the joints of the steel bridge swelled, and were stuck in place. Luis Benitez, chief bridge engineer for the Chicago Department of Transportation, says the surface temperature of the bridge had climbed above 100°F that week.

Ending Plastic Pollution

Sailor Emily Penn is leading an expedition to collect data to help tackle the plastic pollution problem. (Josh Gabbatiss, The Independent)

“The most alarming thing is just the number of pieces that are moving past the boat every time you look out,” says Ms Penn, a sailor with a history of environmental activism.

Protecting Life on Earth

New UN Biodiversity Lab launched, to feature an interactive mapping platform for use in solving biodiversity conservation and development challenges.

By 2030, demand for food may increase by 35%, for water by 40%, and for energy by 50%. @UNEP @UNDP @UNBiodiversity launch an innovative way to use spatial data to meet increased demand while conserving natural ecosystems. Read more: https://t.co/55VaX5JFQt pic.twitter.com/p67Cl9HaTV

— Achim Steiner (@ASteiner) July 5, 2018

Scientist warn the Great Barrior Reef could be devastated by the 2030s. (Jacqueline Williams, New York Times)

“This would effectively sign the death certificate of one of the world’s largest living marine structures,” said Martin Rice, acting chief executive of the Climate Council, a publicly funded Australian research institute.

The post EDN Week in Review: Environmental News for the Week of July 1 appeared first on Earth Day Network.

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Improving the Environment

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt resigned following reports of countless ethics violations. (Brady Dennis and Juliet Eilperin, Washington Post) His successor, Andrew Wheeler, is not expected to protect our environment either (NPR).

EPA Resignation cartoon: https://t.co/8oNOjWq1Ex #Pruitt #EPA #Trump #GlobalWarming #pollution #environment #ScottPruitt #ScottPruittResigns pic.twitter.com/jAHolw781f

— Rob Rogers (@Rob_Rogers) July 6, 2018

Environmental rules being rolled back under Donald Trump:
Air pollution & emissions: 18
Drilling & extraction: 17
Infrastructure & planning: 12
Animals: 9
Toxic substances & safety: 7
Water pollution: 6
Other: 7
Total: 76https://t.co/TqFOm2gm8N

— NYT Climate (@nytclimate) July 6, 2018

Pope Francis warned against turning Earth into a wasteland (Associated Press) as he marked the third anniversary of his Encyclical on the Environment, Laudato Si

“There is a real danger that we will leave future generations only rubble, deserts and refuse,” he warned.

Acting on Climate

The Netherlands is considering national climate legislation that includes the goal to be 100 percent carbon-neutral 2050. (David Roberts, Vox)

The proposal represents a degree of social and political consensus that is almost unthinkable in the US — not only that climate change is “real” (an absurd debate only the US is having), but that it’s urgent and that national policy should support the goals agreed to in Paris. Those goals obligate developed countries like the Netherlands to virtually eliminate carbon emissions by mid-century.

Again, there were more record-setting heat days reported across the globe.

Remarkable forecast from @NWSLosAngeles due to heat dome: “Today will be one for the record books. Almost all if not all of the daily records will fall. It is likely that several monthly records will fall & possible 1 or 2 all time records.” Details: https://t.co/cercisExYv pic.twitter.com/tXDRUms0WD

— Capital Weather Gang (@capitalweather) July 6, 2018

You can use the Three-month Temperature Outlooks found in our Data Snapshots to see what the chances are for a warmer or cooler than usual July-September. https://t.co/sRvmS4Hfx3 pic.twitter.com/ShLZ5jITDp

— NOAA Climate.gov (@NOAAClimate) July 6, 2018

There’s more concern about the connection between climate change and wildfire season with California’s latest heat waves and wildfires (Tim Arango, New York Times)

A steel bridge in Chicago was so hot it stopped working (Anna Brooks, Popular Science)

The 98-year-old double-decker bridge shuttles two levels of traffic back and forth over the Chicago River, and opens its decks to the heavens to let sailboats pass through. Baking under the sun for days on end, the joints of the steel bridge swelled, and were stuck in place. Luis Benitez, chief bridge engineer for the Chicago Department of Transportation, says the surface temperature of the bridge had climbed above 100°F that week.

Ending Plastic Pollution

Sailor Emily Penn is leading an expedition to collect data to help tackle the plastic pollution problem. (Josh Gabbatiss, The Independent)

“The most alarming thing is just the number of pieces that are moving past the boat every time you look out,” says Ms Penn, a sailor with a history of environmental activism.

Protecting Life on Earth

New UN Biodiversity Lab launched, to feature an interactive mapping platform for use in solving biodiversity conservation and development challenges.

By 2030, demand for food may increase by 35%, for water by 40%, and for energy by 50%. @UNEP @UNDP @UNBiodiversity launch an innovative way to use spatial data to meet increased demand while conserving natural ecosystems. Read more: https://t.co/55VaX5JFQt pic.twitter.com/p67Cl9HaTV

— Achim Steiner (@ASteiner) July 5, 2018

Scientist warn the Great Barrior Reef could be devastated by the 2030s. (Jacqueline Williams, New York Times)

“This would effectively sign the death certificate of one of the world’s largest living marine structures,” said Martin Rice, acting chief executive of the Climate Council, a publicly funded Australian research institute.

The post EDN Week in Review: Environmental News for the Week of July 1 appeared first on Earth Day Network.

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As we dive deeper into summer, we are aiming our focus on a small piece of plastic we can do without: the straw.

Our Earth Day 2018 campaign to End Plastic Pollution was wildly successful and we are continuing our global efforts to reduce plastic waste and overall use. To keep up the momentum, we’re asking you to join us this 4th of July in taking a simple step: refuse the straw. While you’re enjoying the outdoors celebrating, ordering or making your favorite ice cold beverages, you can make a difference by skipping the straw. Simply saying, “No straw, please” can make all the difference in the world.

It doesn’t have to end there. Refuse to use plastic cups, water bottles, forks, and other wasteful single-use plastic products. Instead, choose to use reusable utensils to improve your eco-friendly footprint. We know small individual actions and choices can make a big collective difference. (Use our plastic calculator to track, then reduce, your use.)

This Independence Day, we’re grateful for our freedoms and our beautiful country. So keep it clean and go green to protect the red, white, and blue.

— Madeleine Sagebiel

The post Refuse the Straw and More this Summer appeared first on Earth Day Network.

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We are always excited to hear about the actions of teachers and students to address environmental issues. After all, we are counting on the next generation of environmental leaders to help us with our work for years to come! While it wouldn’t be possible to feature every good example, we are taking time to shine a spotlight on select projects and to share environmental education stories with the hope of inspiring others to replicate these efforts in their own communities.

The Challenge

End Plastic Pollution

The Place

Stanton Bridge Primary School in Coventry, England

The Project

Students from the ages of 3 to 11 at Stanton Bridge Primary School participated in activities on World Environment Day that focussed on the impact of plastic pollution on our planet.

  • Students and staff recycled a school’s worth of plastics together.
  • Younger students read books about plastic pollution and played games to practice sorting plastics and non-plastics.
  • Older students wrote a series of letters and persuasive essays to incite action within their community and their country; letters went to individuals ranging from the head of the local recycling facility to the Prime Minister of England.
  • Students of all ages made posters to show how much they care about ending plastic pollution.

Keep up the good work, Stanton Bridge!

More on the Subject and What You Can Do

Use our Plastic Pollution Calculator to see how much plastic you use (then plan to reduce it!).

Explore our Plastic Pollution Toolkit to find out more on the subject.

Use our K-12 Toolkit with students.

— Suzanne Singer

The post EDN Education Spotlight: Stanton Bridge Primary School appeared first on Earth Day Network.

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Acting On Climate

“Global Warming in South Asia: 800 Million at Risk” (Somini Sengupta and Nadja Popovich, New York Times)

Climate change could sharply diminish living conditions for up to 800 million people in South Asia, a region that is already home to some of the world’s poorest and hungriest people, if nothing is done to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions, the World Bank warned Thursday in an ominous new study… More….

“A City in Oman Just Posted the World’s Hottest Low Temperature Ever Recorded: 109 Degrees” (Jason Samenow, Washington Post)

Incredibly, the temperature in Quriyat, Masters said, remained above 107.4 degrees (41.9 Celsius) for 51 straight hours. Its blistering afternoon high temperature of 121.6 degrees (49.8 Celsius) Tuesday was just about two degrees shy of Oman’s all-time heat record and its highest June temperature… More….

“In a High-Stakes Environmental Whodunit, Many Clues Point to China” (Chris Buckley and Henry Fountain, New York Times)

Interviews, documents and advertisements collected by The New York Times and independent investigators indicate that a major source — possibly the overwhelming one — is factories in China that have ignored a global ban and kept making or using the chemical, CFC-11, mostly to produce foam insulation for refrigerators and buildings…. More…

Protecting and Improving the Environment

“Tropical Forests Suffered 2nd-Worst Loss Of Trees On Record Last Year” (Sasha Ingber, NPR)

The report presents a bleak picture: Some areas are experiencing prolonged loss of lush forest, while new areas are becoming hot spots. “Places that haven’t been on our radar so much are all of a sudden going through this major transformation…” More…

“Pope to Huddle with Environmental Leaders, Activists” (Eric J. Lyman, Axios)

The formal name of the conference “Saving Our Common Home and the Future of Life on Earth” hints at the importance Pope Francis and the Vatican are giving this topic of discussion. But participants in the talks are more likely to shape climate debate more than change climate policies for companies or governments. Vatican leaders say that does not diminish their role: In an interview, Cardinal Peter Turkson, one of the key organizers, asked: “What will it take for the world to decide once and for all to make a change?”… More…

“Losing Justice Kennedy Puts Fundamental Environmental Protections in Peril” – Environmental law experts weigh in on the subject (Eric Holthaus, Grist)

Trump has already hinted at a list of potential replacements — all of whom are likely to side with the court’s now clear conservative majority. Kennedy has been the swing vote for decades. And without his moderating influence, advocates of the environment will face a steep challenge in winning over a majority of the justices…. More….

Ending Plastic Pollution

“Mumbai Bans Plastic Bags and Bottles” (Michael Safi, Guardian)

Mumbai has the become the largest Indian city to ban single-use plastics, with residents caught using plastic bags, cups or bottles to face penalties of up to 25,000 rupees (£276) and three months in jail from Monday…. More…

“Plastic Garbage Patch: Medical Tests ‘Inspired Me To Investigate'” (Matt McGrath, BBC)

As well as potentially releasing toxins, plastics are incredibly absorbent and act as sponges for other harmful chemicals floating in the ocean. Sea-going animals mistake microplastics for food and eat them, absorbing these contaminants…. More…

Protecting Species

“Biodiversity is the ‘Infrastructure That Supports All Life’ ” – Interview with Dr. Cristiana Pașca Palmer, UN assistant secretary general and executive secretary of the convention on biological diversity (Jeremy Hance, Guardian)

“In my view, we need to ensure that the entire planet is used sustainably. That is, 100% of the Earth, the “Whole Earth”, has to be managed in a way that will allow continuous healthy functioning of the ecological systems that support life on Earth, including human life….” More…

“Deepwater Horizon Disaster Altered Building Blocks of Ocean Life” (Oliver Milman, Guardian)

Lingering oil residues have altered the basic building blocks of life in the ocean by reducing biodiversity in sites closest to the spill, which occurred when a BP drilling rig exploded in April 2010, killing 11 workers and spewing about 4m barrels of oil into the Gulf…. More…

The post EDN Week in Review: Environmental News for the Week of June 24 appeared first on Earth Day Network.

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http://www.looptt.com/content/watch-ngo-fights-trash-thailand-vietnam-cambodia-beaches

“According to the Earth Day Network, 8.3 billion tonnes of plastic have been produced since it was first introduced in the 1950s, less than 10 percent of which has been recycled.”

The post Earth Day Network Mentioned in Loop News appeared first on Earth Day Network.

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https://www.thedailystar.net/opinion/environment/beat-plastic-pollution-1586287

“A recent report published by Earth Day Network (2018) ranked Bangladesh 10th out of the top 20 plastic polluting countries in the world. Plastic contributes eight percent of the country’s waste which is equivalent to 800,000 tonnes, of which around 200,000 tonnes go into the ocean and rivers.”

The post Earth Day Network Mentioned in The Daily Star appeared first on Earth Day Network.

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