Friday, December 13, 2019

Loose Feathers #727

Masked Boobies / USFWS Photo
Birds and birding news
Science and nature blogging
Biodiversity and conservation
Climate change and environmental politics
  • A report on the state of the Arctic found numerous concerning changes, from record high temperatures to rapid melting of Greenland's ice sheet to thawing permafrost.
  • Meanwhile, bushfires in Australia have emitted a massive amount of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, equal to almost half of the country's annual emissions.
  • Addressing climate change will require a reduction in meat and dairy consumption; "peak meat" will probably need to happen by 2030 in wealthier countries.
  • Activists were frustrated that climate justice is not being given greater attention at the UN climate talks in Madrid. 
  • An EU commission proposed a European Green Deal to help the European economy reduce its emissions and adapt to climate change.
  • New York lost its climate change case against Exxon Mobil this week. The state argued that the company misled shareholders about the cost of climate change.
  • The fracking boom has spurred the development of new plants that convert shale gas to plastic, and communities near the new plants are finding tiny plastic pellets in watersheds around the plants.
  • Recycling of electronic waste is mostly done in Southeast Asia, often by people working for low pay in dangerous working conditions.
  • In East Coast cities like Washington, climate change is reducing the average seasonal snowfall but increasing the potential for monster snowstorms.
  • It seems that New Jersey's proposed single-use plastics ban might be stalled again due to lobbying from the plastics industry. 
  • The proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline would cut through the Appalachians and Piedmont to carry fracked gas to southeast North Carolina. Construction is currently held up because of lawsuits over the pipeline's environmental impacts, including to the Appalachian Trail.