Posts

Showing posts from July, 2019

The more we carve up natural landscapes with roads and fields, the closer we’re pushing large predators like lions and wolves, toward extinction. by Larry Powell

Image
While the consequences of habitat loss have been known for some time, new research just published, underlines just how grave the situation has become.  While this latest research is German, animals like the grey wolf faces similar disruption in North America.  It’s called “habitat fragmentation.” And, it’s been happening on such a large scale, it’s been hard to tell what aspects are the most destructive. That's because ecologists - at least 'til now - haven't been able to properly keep track of all wildlife within an entire eco-system when human developments confine them to smaller and more isolated patches of livable space.  --> -30-

Recent research contradicts a claim by the chemical giant, Bayer, that its newest bug-killer is safe for bees.

Image
by Larry Powell A honeybee colony in Manitoba. A PinP photo. It's brand name is "Sivanto," (generic name -  flupyradifurone ). It's an insecticide designed to kill a wide range of bugs which eat food crops such as soybeans. Bayer is registering it in many jurisdictions around the world.  After conducting various field studies,  Bayer  concludes , "Sivanto displayed a very promising safety profile." The company concedes, it works in ways similar to the  neonicotinoids  (a group of insecticides which has become notorious for its likely role in pollinator decline). Still, it finds, the product "can be considered safe to most beneficial insects, specifically pollinators."  Image by Brian Robert Marshall. But a team of scientists at the University of California, San Diego, reaches a different conclusion.   In findings published earlier this year, the team gave a range of Sivanto doses to the bees, including ones

Amazon deforestation accelerating towards unrecoverable 'tipping point'

Image
The Guardian Data confirms fears that Jair Bolsonaro’s policy encourages illegal logging in Brazil.  Story here. The Amazon rainforest near Manaus, capital of the Brazilian state of Amazonas (largely untouched by human hands, so far).Photo by Neil Palmer/ CIAT.

‘You can’t drink money’: Kootenay communities fight logging to protect their drinking water

Image
The Narwhal In Glade, BC, where clear-cutting could begin any day, determined residents are pulling out all the stops in an effort to protect their local creek — even though a judge ruled they have no right to clean water. Story here. The south end of Kootenay Lk. Photo by Shawn from Airdrie, Canada.

Modern Climate Change Is the Only Worldwide Warming Event of the Past 2,000 Years

Image
Smithsonian.com New research finds that previous periods of warming and cooling driven by natural causes were regional shifts in temperature rather than global events. Story here. A grey heron suffers during a heatwave - 2013. Photo by Gail Hampshire   from Cradley, Malvern, U.K

The smell, the noise, the dust: my neighbour, the factory farm

Image
The Guardian Industrial farms are spreading across Europe. Greenpeace campaigners went to talk to the people who live close by.Warning: readers may find some of the images upsetting. Story here. Dead hogs in a dumpster at a Manitoba factory barn, awaiting removal to an unknown location. A PinP photo. Please also read - "In Hogs We Trust."   A critique of Manitoba’s runaway hog industry. Part 1 - Antibiotic Overuse. Part 11 - The price we pay for corporate pig$. Part 111 - From Malaysia to Manitoba - the global magnitude of livestock diseases. Part 1V - The health and environmental costs of an expanded hog industry. Part V - What’s behind Manitoba’s drive to expand?  

Climate change risks for northern Canada (CBC Video)

Image

Arctic amplification, sea ice, jet stream, polar vortexes...(video)

Image

Canada's high school curricula not giving students full picture of climate change

Image
by University of British Columbia A Pexels photo. Canada's high school students may not be getting enough information on the negative impacts of climate change, scientific consensus behind human-caused warming or climate solutions, according to new research from the University of British Columbia and Lund University. Story here.

How Airplane Contrails Are Helping Make the Planet Warmer

Image
Yale ENVIRONMENT 360 Contrails over Manitoba. A  PinP  photo. New research shows that condensation trails from aircraft exhaust are playing a significant role in global warming. Experts are concerned that efforts to change aviation engine design to reduce CO2 emissions could actually create more contrails and raise daily temperatures even more. Story here.

Canada needs to triple the amount of protected land and water to tackle 'nature emergency': report

Image
CBC News A Cape May warbler. So far, its populations are stable. Photo by PinP. Biodiversity is declining faster than at any other time in human history, study finds. Story here.

Thirty years of unique data reveal what's really killing coral reefs

Image
Science News Study is world's longest record of reactive nutrients, alga concentrations for coral reefs.  Story here. Bleached coral. Photo by NOAA.

The Uninhabitable Earth

Image
New York Intelligencer.  Famine, economic collapse, a sun that cooks us:  What climate change could wreak — sooner than you think.   Story here. Photo by Oxfam.

The Guardian view on the climate emergency: a dangerous paralysis

Image
The Guardian The closer the prospect of disaster becomes, the less the government manages to do.    Story here. A PinP photo.

Don’t believe carbon pricing really works? Just ask B.C.

PEMBINA institute Carbon tax holds key to clean innovation. Story here.  

Seismic lines in Alberta's boreal forest boost methane emissions, according to UCalgary study

Image
                                                                        UToday Newly discovered emissions would increase Canada's national reporting of greenhouse gases.  Story here. Photo by Roland "Roly" Roesler. Photographer's Note This is an aerial view of the Northern Alberta landscape, somewhere between Athabasca and Swan Hills. It consists of numerous shallow lakes, muskeg, and the typical vegetation including spruce, willow and poplars. The typical patterns of the vegetation are determined by the consistence and composition of the semi-solid soil underneath.  The parallel lines that scar the landscape are seismic lines used for oil and gas exploration, and they cover good part of the province. Seismic exploration is somewhat similar in principle to radar, and even more similar to the ultrasound used in medical facilities. Straight, parallel stripes up to 10 m wide are cleared with bulldozers, and drilling equipment follows th

Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming

Image
Alternatives Journal Having an awareness of the worst possible climate change scenarios can be motivating rather than paralyzing, argues David Wallace-Wells. The climate crisis has the potential to bring people together in the massive efforts required to mitigate the disaster. Story here.

CO2 emissions are on track to take us beyond 1.5 degrees of global warming

Image
Science News A fertilizer plant in Brandon, Manitoba, Can. A PinP photo. Current and planned energy infrastructure could emit around 850 gigatons of the greenhouse gas.  Story here.

Could our changing lifestyles and a changing climate spell a return of deadly diseases like malaria to Canada? A recent scientific study warns - it's possible!

Image
by Larry Powell A malaria mosquito, Anopheles albimanus. Photo by CDC. Mosquito-born diseases (MBDs) like dengue fever and malaria aren't currently established in Canada, partly due to our harsh climate. But global warming combined with increasing international travel, could change all that.  New research by a Canadian team from the National Microbiology Lab, the Public Health Agency  of Canada (PHA) and two universities finds, given "an evolving situation" due to climate change, mosquitoes native to Canada "may become infected with new pathogens and move into new regions within Canada." But exotic species may move in, too, bringing diseases like malaria and dengue fever along with them, from afar, as well.  And, "With high levels of international travel, including to locations where the diseases are present," states the report, "there will be more travel-acquired cases of MBDs." As a result, the team stresses a nee

Due to extremely dry conditions, Manitoba livestock producers are being temporarily allowed to cut hay and graze animals on crown land.

Image
   Government of Manitoba Cattle graze on a Manitoba pasture. A  PinP  photo. Manitoba Agriculture advises that, due to dry conditions in parts of the province, livestock producers will temporarily be allowed to cut hay and allow animals to graze on Crown land not normally designated for agricultural use. Under certain circumstances, Crown land can be made available for agricultural use.  The Agricultural Crown Lands Leasing program will administer the use of available land and provide necessary permits.  Livestock must be removed when the naturally existing forage is exhausted or by Oct. 31.  Baled hay must be removed by Nov. 15. Producers with AgriInsurance contracts who intend to put their crop to alternate use are required to contact the Manitoba Agricultural Services Corporation office to arrange for a field appraisal prior to harvesting the crop.  Crop producers should also consider making crop residue available to livestock producers. For more informatio

It’s feared that a disease deadly to hogs, “PEDv,” will return to the rampant stage it reached in Manitoba in 2017.

Image
FARMSCAPE "Manitoba Pork" reports 50 cases in the province already this year, and calls for stepped up efforts to combat it. Story here. Piglets with PEDv develop severe diarrhea and vomiting. Almost all die within a few days of birth. A Manitoba Pork photo. RELATED:  Another 2017 for PEDv ? “IN HOGS WE TRUST”  Part 111 - From Malaysia to Manitoba - the global magnitude of livestock diseases.

China Wrestles with the Toxic Aftermath of Rare Earth Mining

Image
Yale Environment 360 A rare earth mine in Bayan Obo, China. Photo by NASA. China has been a major source of rare earth metals used in high-tech products, from smartphones to wind turbines. As cleanup of these mining sites begins, experts argue that global companies that have benefited from access to these metals should help foot the bill. Story here.

Human contribution to record-breaking June 2019 heatwave in France

Image
World Weather Attribution The darkest red areas are where temperatures have surpassed 40°C. Several European cities have experienced hottest conditions ever recorded. Map by NASA.  Every heatwave occurring in Europe today is made likely and more intense by human-induced climate change.  Story here.