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Interest in Earth Day is falling in the 2010s. Does it matter?

Earth Day 2018.  Why does it mattter?

The history of Earth Day began in Santa Barbara in early 1969, when an oil platform six miles offshore of the idyllic beach town on the central coast of California blew out, spewing some 100,000 barrels of crude into the Pacific. It was the largest oil spill in US history at the time (today it is the third-largest), and catalyzed the modern environmental movement.

Over the next year, Gaylord Nelson, a US senator from Wisconsin, marshaled the personnel, resources, and political capital to create what the politician called a “national teach-in on the environment.” The first Earth Day was held on April 1970, and its impact on public education and policy was tremendous.

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World’s great forests could lose half of all wildlife as planet warms – report

Wildlife to disappear at a catastrophic rate in Amazon because of earth's warming

The world’s greatest forests could lose more than half of their plant species by the end of the century unless nations ramp up efforts to tackle climate change, according to a new report on the impacts of global warming on biodiversity hotspots.

Mammals, amphibians, reptiles and birds are also likely to disappear on a catastrophic scale in the Amazon and other naturally rich ecosysterms in Africa, Asia, North America and Australia if temperatures rise by more than 1.5C, concludes the study by WWF, the University of East Anglia and the James Cook University.

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Trump drilling plan faces backlash

Interior Ryan Zinke faces drilling backlashh

The oil industry has been put on the defensive in the fight over the Trump administration’s plan to expand offshore drilling.

The backlash against Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s decision to consider oil and natural gas drilling nearly everywhere along the nation’s coasts has been fierce and bipartisan.

Drilling opponents have dominated the public conversation since the plan was released in January. Meanwhile, almost all of the Atlantic and Pacific coast governors have come out in opposition to the plan, spurring Zinke to remove Florida’s waters just days after the plan was released.

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The North Pole just surged above freezing in the dead of winter, stunning scientists

N Pole goies above freezing for first time

The sun won’t rise at the North Pole until March 21, and it’s close to the coldest time of year, but an extraordinary and possibly historic thaw swelled over the tip of the planet this weekend. Analyses show that the temperature warmed to the melting point as an enormous storm pumped an intense pulse of heat through the Greenland Sea.

Temperatures may have soared as high as 2 C at the pole, according to the U.S. Global Forecast System model. While there are no direct measurements of temperature there, Zack Labe, a climate scientist working on his PhD at the University of California at Irvine, confirmed that several independent analyses showed “it was very close to freezing,” which is more than 30 C above normal.

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Saudi-led coalition killed 68 children in Yemen: UN

Yemeni children being killedThe Saudi-led coalition that is fighting Houthi rebels in Yemen is responsible for the deaths of scores of children since last summer, a United Nations report says.

Al Jazeera obtained excerpts from the confidential report by the UN Office on Children and Armed Conflict, which was sent to the UN Security Council on January 19.

According to the excerpts, the Saudi-led coalition killed 68 children and wounded 36 others from July to September 2017.

The report found there were at least 20 coalition raids every day - some targeting schools and homes.

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Fossil fuel companies are the real abusers of the welfare system

Fossil fuel companies are the real abusers of welfareIt is time we shift the cost of climate disasters away from the American taxpayer and to the industry that is largely responsible for the damage. That means putting a price on carbon instead of subsidizing their dangerous pollution.

Storms in 2017 cost American taxpayers more than $300 billion, more than any year on record. That’s enough money to feed every food insecure household in the United States — all 17.6 million of them — for an entire year and still have money left over to provide free healthcare to 9 million low-income children for the next 30 years.

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2017 was among the planet’s hottest years on record, government scientists report

2017 among hottest years on record

2017 was among the hottest years ever recorded, government scientists reported Thursday.

The year was the second-hottest in recorded history, NASA said, while scientists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported 2017 was the third-warmest they’ve ever recorded.

The two government agencies use different methodologies to calculate global temperatures, but by either standard, the 2017 results make the past four years the hottest period in their 138-year archive.

2017 achieved a temperature of 1.51 degrees Fahrenheit (0.84 degrees Celsius), above the average temperature seen in the 20th century, according to NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information.

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