Breaking Waves: Ocean News

08/17/2018 - 05:08
Government to set target by regulation in move to defuse internal opposition – and court Labor The Turnbull government is preparing to set the emissions reduction target for the national energy guarantee by regulation rather than legislation in a move to court Labor’s support and defuse some internal tensions about enshrining the Paris climate commitments in Australian law. The government is working up the regulatory option ahead of cabinet deliberations next week – as well as expediting a power price fix linked to the Neg, which will likely involve setting default pricing for electricity consumers and punitive measures to stop big energy companies extracting super profits from their customers. Continue reading...
08/17/2018 - 05:00
Trump administration forces some scientific funding to be reviewed by adviser who was high-school football teammate of Ryan Zinke Prominent US climate scientists have told the Guardian that the Trump administration is holding up research funding as their projects undergo an unprecedented political review by the high-school football teammate of the US interior secretary. The US interior department administers over $5.5bn in funding to external organizations, mostly for research, conservation and land acquisition. At the beginning of 2018, interior secretary Ryan Zinke instated a new requirement that scientific funding above $50,000 must undergo an additional review to ensure expenditures “better align with the administration’s priorities”. Continue reading...
08/17/2018 - 04:56
‘Extremely grave’ situation in southern Indian state as more than 150,000 people displaced from their homes The death toll from floods in the southern Indian state of Kerala has jumped to 164 and could grow further, with more rain predicted and thousands of people still awaiting rescue. Roads are damaged, mobile phone networks are down, an international airport has been closed and more than 150,000 people have been left homeless after unusually heavy rain this month caused the most damaging floods in Kerala in a century. Continue reading...
08/17/2018 - 01:00
From Hawaii to the Netherlands and France to South Korea readers have shared their reactions to recent record temperatures In mid-July last year, Haythem Ayari, a 23-year-old engineering student in Nabeul, coastal Tunisia, caught a bus to travel the 10km to university. The vehicle, already overloaded with passengers, was caught in gridlocked traffic and sat static for nearly an hour. There was a heatwave, with a temperature of about 38C (100F) outside; inside the bus it was 42C (108F). “At a specific moment, I just snapped,” remembered Ayari. “I got out in the middle of traffic to finally breathe.” Since then, he has been inclined to panic attacks if in confined, crowded spaces during hot weather. A month earlier, approximately 2,000 km (1300 miles) away in Bristol, UK, Adam Corner was on a bus with his partner and their new baby, heading across the city to visit friends. The bus was held up in traffic – not for long, but long enough. “It became a kind of inferno,” said Dr Corner, research director at Climate Outreach; their baby, barely a month old, started screaming in a way Corner had never heard before. “We had a little insight into this immediate, visceral risk – you see it through the eyes of your newborn child.” He pulled the bus’s emergency cord and they jumped off into traffic. Continue reading...
08/17/2018 - 00:30
The aircraft, which came down near Ulladulla, was involved in fighting the Kingiman fire A firefighting helicopter has crashed on the NSW south coast killing the pilot who was the only person on board. The chopper crashed near Ulladulla after 2pm on Friday, according to a Civil Aviation Safety Authority spokesman. Continue reading...
08/16/2018 - 23:21
Minister says nets will stay between Newcastle and Wollongong but be removed further north after trial There are calls for shark nets to be pulled from all New South Wales beaches after the state government announced it was removing the controversial mesh on the north coast following public opposition. On Friday the state primary industries minister, Niall Blair, said locals were unhappy about recent trials of the nets, which had proved to be less effective at catching target sharks and harmed more marine life than Smart drumlines. Continue reading...
08/16/2018 - 13:08
Environment secretary Michael Gove to banish house coal to curb harmful emissions Michael Gove, the environment secretary, is due to confirm plans to ban the sale of the most-polluting fuels for domestic wood burners in an attempt to cut harmful emissions. The sale of traditional house coal will be phased out under proposals set out in the government’s draft clean air strategy in May, which are expected to be confirmed by Gove’s department on Friday. Continue reading...
08/16/2018 - 08:26
First fracking operation in seven years set to begin despite low public support The government has stopped asking the British public whether they are for or against fracking for shale gas just weeks before the first fracking operation in seven years is due to start. The number of people against extracting shale gas has outweighed those in favour since 2015, and the latest polling by officials found 32% opposed with just 18% in support. Continue reading...
08/16/2018 - 06:38
Khan writes to attorney general over girl who died during spikes in nitrogen dioxide The mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has written to the attorney general asking him to back a new inquest into the death of a nine-year-old girl whose severe asthma attacks coincided with spikes in air pollution. The mother of Ella Kissi-Debrah has fought a long campaign to highlight the role she believes illegal air pollution played in her daughter’s death in 2013. Continue reading...
08/16/2018 - 04:30
Playground oases could benefit students and city alike, but will making them public prove too controversial in a city on high alert? It’s only 10am but the heat is already radiating off the asphalt at the École Riblette, a primary school on the outskirts of Paris. Sébastien Maire, the city’s chief resilience officer, points to the school’s lower courtyard, a classic heat trap: surrounded by concrete walls that reflect sunlight inside. Last June, the courtyard hit 55C (131F). “For three days, school activities stopped,” Maire says. “It was not possible for the children to study, nor to go into the schoolyard. We would forbid them because it’s 55 degrees – you can fry an egg on the ground.” Continue reading...