‘Glaciers can’t get a break’: How climate change is affecting Canada’s icy landscape5 minute read Monday, Dec. 19, 2022
VANCOUVER - On a mountain high above the residents of Metro Vancouver, tucked inside a north-facing gully, the region's last remaining glacier is vanishing fast.
The Coquitlam Glacier has survived 4,000 to 5,000 years thanks to its sheltered location on the east side of the Coquitlam watershed.
However, scientists say it's among thousands across Canada that are shrinking more quickly than expected due to climate change, with consequences for everything from ecosystems and climate regulation to water supply and tourism.
"It's hanging in there, but it's certainly wasting away quite quickly at this point," said Peter Marshall, field hydrologist with Metro Vancouver's water services.
29°C, A few clouds
CP NewsAlert: Countries at COP15 reach deal to preserve biodiversity1 minute read Preview Monday, Dec. 19, 2022
MONTREAL - Countries taking part in the COP15 biodiversity conference in Montreal say they've reached an agreement on four goals and 23 targets.
The goals include protecting 30 per cent of Earth's lands, oceans, coastal areas, inland waters, as well as, reducing by $500 billion annual harmful government subsidies and cutting food waste in half.
Negotiators finalize nature deal ahead of final day of COP15 convention2 minute read Preview Monday, Dec. 19, 2022
EU reaches deal on emissions trading, social climate fund3 minute read Preview Sunday, Dec. 18, 2022
BERLIN (AP) — European Union governments and lawmakers reached a deal Sunday on key elements of the 27-nation bloc's green deal, reforming the EU's trading system for greenhouse gas emissions and creating a new hardship fund for those hardest-hit by measures to curb climate change.
The two sides agreed to push European industries and energy companies to cut their emissions by speeding up the phase-out of free pollution vouchers. Doing so makes each ton of carbon dioxide that's released into the atmosphere more expensive for polluters.
The EU's executive Commission said the measure would require European industries to reduce their emissions by 62% by 2030 from 2005 levels, compared to a target of 43% under the previous rules.
To ensure a level playing field, the EU will also introduce a tax on foreign companies that want to import products which don't meet climate-protection standards European companies have to comply with. The so-called Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism was agreed to last week.
Historic biodiversity agreement reached at UN conference5 minute read Preview Monday, Dec. 19, 2022
MONTREAL (AP) — Negotiators reached a historic deal at a U.N. biodiversity conference early Monday that would represent the most significant effort to protect the world’s lands and oceans and provide critical financing to save biodiversity in the developing world.
The global framework comes on the day the United Nations Biodiversity Conference, or COP15, is set to end in Montreal. China, which holds the presidency at this conference, released a new draft on Sunday that gave the sometimes contentious talks much-needed momentum.
“We have in our hands a package which I think can guide us as we all work together to halt and reverse biodiversity loss and put biodiversity on the path to recovery for the benefit of all people in the world,” Chinese Environment Minister Huang Runqiu told delegates before the package was adopted to rapturous applause just before dawn. “We can be truly proud.”
The most significant part of the agreement is a commitment to protect 30% of land and water considered important for biodiversity by 2030, known as 30 by 30. Currently, 17% of terrestrial and 10% of marine areas are protected.
COP15 negotiators heading towards a global nature deal, environment minister says5 minute read Preview Sunday, Dec. 18, 2022
Alabama closes some oystering areas, sparking complaints3 minute read Preview Saturday, Dec. 17, 2022
DAUPHIN ISLAND, Ala. (AP) — Alabama officials have closed some oystering grounds in Mobile Bay, prompting complaints from harvesters.
The move by the Alabama Marine Resource Division is part of a continuing effort to keep wild oyster reefs in the Gulf of Mexico from being killed by overharvesting.
The state closed the western half of its oystering area in Mobile Bay on Nov. 23, WKRG-TV reports, and closed two small but productive areas in the eastern half of the bay on Tuesday.
Meeting with oyster harvesters on Dauphin Island, AMRD director Scott Bannon said the closure was part of an effort to rebuild the state's population of the bivalve.
Feds, Northwest Territories to create Indigenous protected area for Great Bear Lake3 minute read Preview Saturday, Dec. 17, 2022
Biodiversity talks in final days with many issues unresolved6 minute read Preview Saturday, Dec. 17, 2022
Negotiators at a United Nations biodiversity conference Saturday have still not resolved most of the key issues around protecting the world's nature by 2030 and providing tens of billions of dollars to developing countries to fund those efforts.
The United Nations Biodiversity Conference, or COP15, is set to wrap up Monday in Montreal and delegates were racing to agree on language in a framework that calls for protecting 30% of global land and marine areas by 2030, a goal known as “30 by 30." Currently, 17% of terrestrial and 10% of marine areas globally are protected.
They also have to settle on amounts of funding that would go to financing projects to create protected areas and restore marine and other ecosystems. Early draft frameworks called for closing a $700 billion gap in financing by 2030. Most of that would come from reforming subsidies in the agriculture, fisheries and energy sectors but there are also calls for tens of billions of dollars in new funding that would flow from rich to poor nations.
“From the beginning of the negotiations, we’ve been seeing systematically some countries weakening the ambition. The ambition needs to come back,” Marco Lambertini, the director general of WWF International said, adding that they needed a “clear conservation target” that “sets the world on a clear trajectory towards delivering a nature positive future.”
Friendly rivals: with EV tensions in past, Canada poised to compete with biggest ally5 minute read Preview Saturday, Dec. 17, 2022
COP15 nature negotiations racing to finish line but disagreements still plentiful5 minute read Preview Saturday, Dec. 17, 2022
MONTREAL - The draft text of a new agreement to protect nature from destructive human behaviour is still littered with disagreement as COP15 talks in Montreal barrel toward their conclusion on Monday.
With one million species facing extinction this century and a majority of both land and marine environments already significantly altered by human activities, the 196 nations in the UN biodiversity convention are seeking a bold new agreement that halts further destruction of nature and seeks to restore what has already been lost.
Nature experts warn that failing to halt the devastation will have drastic consequences for human health affecting everything from clean air and water to food security and the transmission of viruses.
"The day after tomorrow we will know if governments have failed people and planet or not," warned Bernadette Fischler Hooper, the head of international advocacy at the World Wildlife Fund UK.
5.4 quake jolts West Texas, one of state’s strongest ever2 minute read Preview Friday, Dec. 16, 2022
MIDLAND, Texas (AP) — One of the strongest earthquakes in Texas history struck Friday evening in a western region of the state that's home to oil and fracking activity. There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries.
The U.S. Geological Survey said the temblor had a magnitude of 5.4 and struck at 5:35 p.m., local time. It was centered about 14 miles (22 kilometers) north-northwest of Midland, with a depth of about 5.6 miles (9 kilometers).
The agency had previously issued a preliminary magnitude of 5.3 before updating it. In the interim, the National Weather Service's office in Midland tweeted that it “would be the 4th strongest earthquake in Texas state history!”
Geophysicist Jana Pursley at the USGS's National Earthquake Information Center in Colorado said that according to early reports received by the agency, the quake was felt by more than 1,500 people over a large distance from Amarillo and Abilene in Texas to as far west as Carlsbad, New Mexico.
Conferees told Colorado River action ‘absolutely critical’4 minute read Preview Friday, Dec. 16, 2022
Alabama plant owned by W.V. governor’s family fined $925,0004 minute read Preview Friday, Dec. 16, 2022
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — A company owned by the family of West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice is paying a $925,000 fine to an Alabama health agency, after it shut down a coke plant it said was leaking polluting gases.
Under a consent decree approved Wednesday by a state court judge, Bluestone Coke will pay the fine to the Jefferson County Health Department for air pollution violations at its coking plant north of downtown Birmingham.
A coking plant heats coal at very high temperatures in what are supposed to be closed, oxygen-free ovens, cooking off impurities while not burning the coal. The process creates coke, which is used as fuel to fire blast furnaces for metal and cement makers.
Coke ovens have long polluted sections of Birmingham, once a smoky center of coal mining and steelmaking and one of Alabama's biggest cities. But increasing attention has focused on the impact of pollution in the predominantly Black neighborhoods that surround Bluestone Coke and other industrial sites. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has designated the area a Superfund site and has been excavating contaminated soil for years. Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin has drafted an unfunded $37 million plan to buy out nearby residents and improve the area.
US buying 3M barrels of oil to start replenishing reserves2 minute read Preview Friday, Dec. 16, 2022
Officials order cleanup at Iowa plant rocked by explosion2 minute read Preview Friday, Dec. 16, 2022
Suit: US ship canal dredging in summer threatens sea turtles4 minute read Preview Friday, Dec. 16, 2022
SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — A conservation group has filed suit over a U.S. agency's planned timeframe for dredging a Georgia coast shipping channel, arguing that using powerful pumps to suck up harbor sediments in summertime would endanger rare sea turtles.
For two years, environmentalists have battled an effort by the Army Corps of Engineers to end a policy that for three decades limited to winter months the dredging of accumulated sand and mud from harbors in Georgia and the Carolinas.
The seasonal limits have been in place since 1991. They are intended to protect sea turtles from being killed and maimed by the vacuum-like suction pumps of hopper dredges during the warmer months when female turtles lay their eggs on Southern beaches. Conservationists credit that policy with helping threatened and endangered turtle species begin a fragile rebound.
Giant loggerhead sea turtles, protected as a federally threatened species, nest during the spring and summer months on beaches from North Carolina to Florida. Smaller numbers of endangered green and Kemp’s ridley sea turtles lay eggs in the region as well.
Ontario auditor general finds Niagara Escarpment protections lacking4 minute read Preview Friday, Dec. 16, 2022
US poised to ban shark fin trade, pleasing conservationists4 minute read Preview Friday, Dec. 16, 2022
UN: Thousands in West, Central Africa could face starvation4 minute read Preview Friday, Dec. 16, 2022
In 2022, AP photographers captured pain of a changing planet6 minute read Preview Friday, Dec. 16, 2022
Some sharks return to the same sites to breed for decades3 minute read Preview Friday, Dec. 16, 2022
DeSantis signs bill seeking to stabilize insurance market4 minute read Preview Friday, Dec. 16, 2022
Easter Island rebounds from wildfire that singed its statues6 minute read Preview Friday, Dec. 16, 2022