Environment News – Headlines
Some bite-sized pieces of news from the environment this week.
3 July, 2019
We’ve just had the hottest June EVER on record, according to the European Union’s Earth observation program, and it brought death, destruction, and misery. More than 35 people died as temperatures soared past 120 F / 49 C in India. France set a new national temperature record of 115 F / 46 C, and there were several large willdfires in Spain. Another report found that such heat waves are happening about 10 times more often now than they were a century ago. “Every heatwave occurring in Europe today is made more likely and more intense by human-induced climate change,” the report said.
A new investigation shows that huge areas of once-pristine Amazon rainforest are being razed to the ground in order to make space for cattle – to feed the ever-hungry demand for meat. Most people in developed countries eat far more meat than they need. We shouldn’t be killing the Amazon for burgers and steaks.
Pressure is mounting on the UK government to support onshore wind farms – voters prefer them to the dangers of fracking. In the past, the government has promoted fracking above renewable energy. It’s about time they changed their attitude – after all, they’re terribly smug about their ambition to be net carbon zero by 2050. They’ll need to halt fracking and take the correct action to meet that goal.
Greta Thunberg is the schoolgirl climate activist who has inspired people around the world to strike for climate action. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is America’s youngest-ever congresswoman. They both fight for climate action, and recently they talked for the first time. I found the conversation fascinating – you can read it here. They discuss the differences – and similarities – between the climate fight in both their countries. And what it’s like to be dismissed for their age.
Antartica has lost vast quantities of ice to global warming / climate change. Antarctica lost as much sea ice in 4 years as the Arctic lost in 34 years. The cause of the sharp Antarctic losses is as yet unknown and only time will tell whether the ice recovers or continues to decline.
When you need to wash your car, should you DIY, or take it to a commercial car wash? The figures may be different in other countries, but in the US, a person washing their car in their driveway uses about 110 gallons of water, and sends untreated water into storm drains that are not designed for it. A commercial car wash uses about 43 gallons of water per car – and this can be reduced by a massive 40% if they use water reclamation.
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