Five "uncontacted" tribes are at imminent risk of extinction as oil companies, colonists and loggers invade their territiories. The semi-nomadic groups, who live deep in the forests of Peru, Brazil and Paraguay, are vulnerable to common western diseases such as flu and measles but also risk being killed by armed gangs, according to a report by Survival International, which identifies the five groups as the most threatened on Earth.
Climate change poses as great a threat to the world as the nuclear arms race, scientists warned yesterday as they called on leaders to take urgent action to tackle the problem.
The scientists and Nobel laureates attending a three-day conference hosted by St James's Palace drew up a memorandum calling for global greenhouse gas emissions to peak by 2015. The memorandum from the experts, who included the US energy secretary Steven Chu, said a new global deal on emissions expected at the UN conference on climate change in Copenhagen in December was urgently needed.
The environmental organization WWF just released a study that paints a bleak picture of what will happen to the Coral Triangle if nothing is done to protect it. Ove Hoegh-Guldberg led the research team. He says that negotiations to curb carbon emissions, to be held in Copenhagen next December, will be crucial for its survival.
The Obama administration will retain a Bush-era rule for polar bears, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced Friday, in a move that angered activists who noted the rule limits what can be done to protect the species from global warming.
The species law that affords protection for plants, animals and fish that face possible extinction became entangled with the need to reduce pollution linked to global warming more than a year ago. The Interior Department during the Bush administration declared the polar bear a threatened species, citing the decline of Arctic sea ice due to global warming.
People in 34 states who live near 210 coal ash lagoons or landfills with inadequate lining have a higher risk of cancer and other diseases from contaminants in their drinking water, two environmental groups reported on Thursday.
Twenty-one states have five or more of the high-risk disposal sites near coal-fired power plants. The groups -- the Environmental Integrity Project and Earthjustice -- said that a 2002 Environmental Protection Agency document that the agency didn't release until March of this year adds information about toxic releases from these facilities to nearby water systems and data on how some contaminants accumulate in fish and deer and can harm the health of people who hunt and fish.
The US has the fastest growing population of any industrial nation, and one of the world's highest consumption rates. Water, topsoil, forests, fish, petroleum...the more of us, the more pressure we exert on our environment. Many discuss our personal consumption patterns, but few dare talk about the underlying crisis of population growth.
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