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Posts Tagged ‘Green News’

Echidna Puggles Born At Perth Zoo Reportedly Mark Breeding Milestone (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on December 18, 2012

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If you need a pick-me-up this week, these delightful echidna puggles may be able to lend a chubby hand.

According to Australia’s Herald Sun, a pair of baby short-beaked echidnas were born at Perth Zoo this August. The puggles’ arrival into the world reportedly marked a breeding milestone for the Australian zoo.

“These [baby Echidnas] represent the first successful breeding from zoo-born Echidnas and have shown that echidnas breed at a younger age than previously thought,” writes Zooborns.com. Read the rest of this entry »

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2012 UN Climate Talks In Doha, Qatar Face Multiple Challenges

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on November 26, 2012

AP  |  By

Doha Climate Conference

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — As nearly 200 countries meet in oil-and-gas-rich Qatar for annual talks starting Monday on slowing global warming, one of the main challenges will be raising climate aid for poor countries at a time when budgets are strained by financial turmoil.

Rich countries have delivered nearly $30 billion in grants and loans promised in 2009, but those commitments expire this year. And a Green Climate Fund designed to channel up to $100 billion annually to poor countries has yet to begin operating.

Borrowing a buzzword from the U.S. budget debate, Tim Gore of the British charity Oxfam said developing countries, including island nations for whom rising sea levels pose a threat to their existence, stand before a “climate fiscal cliff.”

“So what we need for those countries in the next two weeks are firm commitments from rich countries to keep giving money to help them to adapt to climate change,” he told The Associated Press on Sunday. Read the rest of this entry »

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Largest Criminal Fines Against Companies in the US

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on November 16, 2012

AP Associated Press

BP said Thursday it has agreed to pay $4.5 billion in a settlement with the federal government over the April 2010 explosion of the drilling rig Deepwater Horizon. The agreement includes nearly $1.3 billion in criminal fines, with the rest of the money going to several government-related entities. The criminal fine is the largest in U.S. history and eclipses a 2009 fine against drug-maker Pfizer Inc.

Here’s a look at the largest criminal fines assessed against companies in the U.S., according to the Justice Department:

1. $1.256 billion in criminal fines, November 2012, against BP PLC for various charges related to the 2010 explosion of the Deepwater Horizon and the resulting oil spill. An estimated 172 million gallons of crude spilled into the Gulf, fouling marshes and beaches, killing wildlife and closing vast areas to fishing. Eleven workers died in the blast. The spill was the nation’s worst offshore oil disaster. Read the rest of this entry »

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Did Climate Change Kill the Mayans?

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on November 10, 2012

By 

There are a lot of things that didn’t kill the Mayans: asteroid strikes, planet-wide quakes, global cataclysms prophesied by  shamans and etched into ancient calendars. What did wipe them out was likely something that is far less mystical, and indeed is entirely familiar to modern civilizations: climate change. If you want a look at what we could face in the decades and  centuries ahead, look at what one of the world’s greatest cultures suffered a millennium ago. That’s the conclusion of a  newly released study and what it lacks in Hollywood-friendly drama, it makes up in sound — and scary — science.

The arc of the Mayan rise and fall is well known: The civilization first took hold in 1,800 BC, in the Central American region that now includes and surrounds Guatemala. It grew slowly until about 250 A.D. At that point, a great expansion of the culture — known to archaeologists as the Classic Period —  began and continued to 900 A.D., yielding the architectural, political and textual artifacts that have so mesmerized scientists. But a decline began around 800 A.D. and led to a final collapse about 300 years later.

The Mayan arc was  hardly smooth and steady, and there were periods of turbulence and decline even during the golden era. The great settlement of El Mirador, which once might have been home to 100,000 people, collapsed around 300 A.D, for example. From the fifth to eights centuries A.D., there was an explosion of the rich tablet texts that provided so many insights into how the Mayans lived and worked. Suddenly, however,  starting in 775 A.D., the number of texts began to plunge by as much as 50%, a bellwether of a culture that was declining too.

(MoreHow the Drought of 2012 Will Make Your Food More Expensive)

There have been a lot of theories for what accounted for such cycles, with climate among the most-mentioned. The better the year-to-year weather — with plenty of rainfall and reasonably steady and predictable temperatures — the better crops do, and the more the culture and economy can expand. The texts have hinted at declines in productivity, perhaps climate-related, coinciding with generations of unrest, but there was never a precise way to confirm those writings. Analysis of lake sediments can yield a reliable reading of the levels of sulfur, oxygen isotopes and other atmospheric markers at various points in history, which reveal a lot about rainfall and other critical variables. But the Mayans themselves often unwittingly disturbed those sediments, with deforestation — including wide-scale burnings — and fishing. Read the rest of this entry »

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Climate Change and Sandy: Why We Need to Prepare for a Warmer World

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on November 4, 2012

By 

SHANNON STAPLETON / REUTERS
Homes devastated by fire and the effects of Hurricane Sandy are seen at the Breezy Point section of the Queens borough of New York City on Oct. 30, 2012.

After a campaign season in which it was the missing in action issueclimate change roared back into relevancy in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Bill McKibben, the writer-turned-activist behind 350.org, put it in stark terms. “This is an absolutely unprecedented storm,” he told POLITICO on Monday evening. “This entire year should be a seriously wake-up call—and the public’s beginning to get it.”

Some scientists and science writers, however, were just as quick to caution that we can’t really attribute any single weather event to climate change—and that tropical cyclones like Sandy have proved particularly hard to connect to global warming. Andrew Revkin of Dot Earth drew a clear line against attributing Sandy directly to recent man-made warming, noting that there had been periods in the past when strong hurricanes occurred during cooler years:

There remains far too much natural variability in the frequency and potency of rare and powerful storms — on time scales from decades to centuries – to go beyond pointing to this event being consistent with what’s projected on a human-heated planet. Read the rest of this entry »

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Global Warming Systemically Caused Hurricane Sandy

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on October 31, 2012

By George Lakoff, Author, The Political Mind, Moral Politics, Don’t Think of an Elephant!

Comment: We are responsible to all disasters. We already knew this, however; we did pretend because we thought this will not happen to ourselves. Now what to say, whom to blame?

Yes, global warming systemically caused Hurricane Sandy — and the Midwest droughts and the fires in Colorado and Texas, as well as other extreme weather disasters around the world. Let’s say it out loud, it was causation, systemic causation.

Systemic causation is familiar. Smoking is a systemic cause of lung cancer. HIV is a systemic cause of AIDS. Working in coal mines is a systemic cause of black lung disease. Driving while drunk is a systemic cause of auto accidents. Sex without contraception is a systemic cause of unwanted pregnancies.

There is a difference between systemic and direct causation. Punching someone in the nose is direct causation. Throwing a rock through a window is direct causation. Picking up a glass of water and taking a drink is direct causation. Slicing bread is direct causation. Stealing your wallet is direct causation. Any application of force to something or someone that always produces an immediate change to that thing or person is direct causation. When causation is direct, the wordcause is unproblematic.

Systemic causation, because it is less obvious, is more important to understand. A systemic cause may be one of a number of multiple causes. It may require some special conditions. It may be indirect, working through a network of more direct causes. It may be probabilistic, occurring with a significantly high probability. It may require a feedback mechanism. In general, causation in ecosystems, biological systems, economic systems, and social systems tends not to be direct, but is no less causal. And because it is not direct causation, it requires all the greater attention if it is to be understood and its negative effects controlled.

Above all, it requires a name: systemic causation. Read the rest of this entry »

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Climate Change Poses Food Distribution Risks, Experts Worry

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on August 17, 2012

* Bridges, roads could be washed away, hitting harvest transport

Coffee Coffee lovers may want to get that caffeine fix before the treasured drink becomes an extinct export. Starbucks raised the issue last year when the company's director of sustainability told The Guardian climate change is shortening the supply chain of Arabica coffee bean.

Coffee
Coffee lovers may want to get that caffeine fix before the treasured drink becomes an extinct export. Starbucks raised the issue last year when the company’s director of sustainability told The Guardian climate change is shortening the supply chain of Arabica coffee bean.

* “High degree of confidence” weather extremes linked to climate change

* Enough food, but problem is distribution – professor

By Environment Correspondent Alister Doyle

OSLO, Aug 15 (Reuters) – Downpours and heatwaves caused by climate change could disrupt food supplies from the fields to the supermarkets, raising the risk of more price spikes such as this year’s leap triggered by drought in the United States.

Food security experts working on a chapter in a U.N. overview of global warming due in 2014 said governments should take more account of how extremes of heat, droughts or floods could affect food supplies from seeds to consumers’ plates.

“It has not been properly recognised yet that we are dealing with a food system here. There is a whole chain that is also going to be affected by climate change,” Professor Dr John Porter of the University of Copenhagen said.

“It is more than just the fact that there are droughts in the United States that will reduce yields,” he said. Like the other experts, he said was giving personal opinions, not those of the U.N. panel.

After harvest, floods could wash away roads or bridges, for instance, between fields and factories processing the crop. Or warehouses storing food could be damaged by more powerful storms. Such factors were likely to hit poor nations hardest.

“There are reasons to expect more frequent (price) spikes, given that it will be more common to see conditions that are considered extreme,” said David Lobell, an assistant professor at Stanford University in California. Read the rest of this entry »

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Richard Muller: ‘Humans Are Almost Entirely The Cause’ Of Climate Change

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 30, 2012

The Huffington Post  |  By z

Richard Muller Climate Change

“Humans are almost entirely the cause” of climate change, according to a scientistwho once doubted that global warming even existed.

Last year, Richard Muller walked backyears of climate change skepticism in light of new research. But Sunday’s comments go one step further.

Muller wrote in an NYT op-ed that after exhaustive research, he believes that an increase of greenhouse gases can be closely linked to the rise in the earth’s temperature. He explains:

Our results show that the average temperature of the earth’s land has risen by two and a half degrees Fahrenheit over the past 250 years, including an increase of one and a half degrees over the most recent 50 years. Moreover, it appears likely that essentially all of this increase results from the human emission of greenhouse gases

However, Muller said that he did not believe that the recent heat waves or Hurricane Katrina were caused by global warming. Read the rest of this entry »

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Lioness Attacks Crocodile To Protect Pride (PHOTOS)

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 27, 2012

Lioness Attacks Crocodile

In a instant, a tense situation escalated to an attack, and one lucky wildlife photographer managed to catch a violent moment between a lioness and a crocodile.

“The sequence of six pictures of the real action were taken in one second,” photog Pia Dierckx told The Daily Mail.

Dierickx, 48, was observing the lioness and her pride as they prepared to cross a riverbed in Botswana. When a threatening crocodile appeared, the lioness sprung into action and grabbed the animal by its mouth. The two engaged in a quick but fierce battle, each biting the other, until the lioness ran off relatively unscathed, save for a cut to her lip.

Dierckx reportedly told BPNS that it happened so quickly, she didn’t even notice it.

“It was only when I downloaded my pictures later that I saw what had happened,” said Dierickx.

This isn’t the first time a lioness has been spotted protecting cubs. Last year, a mother lion was photographed rescuing her cub struggling on a slippery slope.

In another precious moment caught on film this year, a lion trainer visiting four young lions on his last day of work was overwhelmed by their outpouring of love for him.

Unfortunately, some lions are threatened by indiscriminate killing and habitat loss, according to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Read the rest of this entry »

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CLIMATE COST

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 25, 2012

The continental U.S. has just experienced the hottest 12 month period in recorded history. The West is on fire. The Maldives are going underwater and California can expect a sea level rise of six inches in less than 20 years.

An increasing number of studies are making the connections between human activities, climate change and a rise in extreme weather events. While it is difficult to point to climate change as causing a single weather event without in-depth research, patterns are emerging.

Scientists warn that climate change will bring an increase in heat waves, droughts, floods and worsening storms. Not a rosy forecast for our future, let alone our children’s future. Read the rest of this entry »

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Lonesome George Dead: Last-Of-His-Kind Galapagos Tortoise Dies At 100

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on June 25, 2012

Reuters  Share on Google+

Lonesome George Dead

In this July 21, 2008 file photo released by Galapagos National Park, a giant tortoise named “Lonesome George” is seen in the Galapagos islands, an archipelago off Ecuador’s Pacific coast. (AP Photo/Galapagos National Park, File)

* Giant tortoise, 100 years old, was a symbol of the Galapagos

* Galapagos park may decide to embalm his body

By Alexandra Valencia and Eduardo Garcia

QUITO, June 24 (Reuters) – Lonesome George, the last remaining tortoise of his kind and a conservation icon, died on Sunday of unknown causes, the Galapagos National Park said. He was thought to be about 100 years old. Read the rest of this entry »

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Archi-future: 13 Green Buildings That Will Blow Your Mind (PHOTOS)

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on May 22, 2012

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Sustainable Architecture

As architects continue to envision the utopian cities of the future, one thing is certain: innovation means sustainability.

In the midst of a global ecological crisis, architects and designers are relentlessly pursuing design strategies that manage to mitigate the toxic byproducts of our consumption habits, while maximizing our use of sustainable energy sources. Meeting these challenges means more deeply integrating green technologies like wind and solar power, natural climate controls and space-age materials in to the building processes.

The results can be pretty mind-blowing.

In the spirit of eco-optimism, we’ve curated a selection of some of the most disruptive designs in the green building space, with an eye for both sustainability and aesthetic innovation. Click through below for photos and renderings of the most innovative projects around the world.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Indonesia Earthquake: Tsunami Warning Issued Following Magnitude 8.7 Temblor

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on April 11, 2012

BANDA ACEH, Indonesia — A tsunami watch was issued for countries across the Indian Ocean on Wednesday after a large earthquake hit waters off Indonesia, sending residents pouring from their homes in panic.

The U.S. Geological Survey said the 8.7-magnitude quake was centered 20 miles (33 kilometers) beneath the ocean floor around 269 miles (434 kilometers) from Aceh’s provincial capital. Read the rest of this entry »

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21-time Mt. Everest summitter awarded with Guinness World Record

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on February 28, 2012

KATHMANDU, Feb. 27 (Xinhua) — Nepal’s mountaineering legend Appa Sherpa was awarded with Guinness World Record (GWR) for climbing the highest mountain Mt. Qomolangma for 21 times on Monday.

GWR officials, who were in town since Saturday, took the opportunity of their arrival in Nepal to award Sherpa with the GWR award.

The 52-year-old Sherpa, who started to climb the mountains as a porter, holds the record as the only man in the world to ascend the Mt. Qomolangma for 21 times.

Craig Glenday, editor-in-chief of the GWR, hailed Appa Sherpa as “a hero of the world”.

“It is an honor and a great privilege to hand over the certificate to Sherpa as he has proved that how much a person can do,” Glenday said.

While receiving the award, Appa Sherpa expressed his happiness and praised the GWR officers for being together with him since past 10 years.

“I am honored to receive this award from the chief of the GWR,” Sherpa said.

He also said that he will encourage a younger generation to follow his footsteps for the national sake.

Sherpa, with his other three colleagues, is on another mission of trekking all along the “Great Himalayan Trail”, a 120 days trekking with the purpose of enhancing awareness about the impacts of climate change on the Himalayas.

The total length of the trekking measures 1,700 km from East to West of Nepal and will take approximately 120 days to complete. Read the rest of this entry »

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Are We Part of a Single Living Organism?

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 28, 2011

Wonderful article. Life is nothing more than the specific combinatio­n of non living things. Unexpected minor change in the combinatio­n could cause drastic change in physical and consciousn­ess level. Combinatio­n of two cells develop in amazing way and forms different organs without external help. How that combinatio­n works in amazing way could be the answer of ‘Big Bang’ but we are just able to explain the process and not the source of process and conscious level. Who are aware they just guide us the process to be there and do not explain due to technical problem.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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