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Bipartisan group defends sequoia tree bill in California despite environmental groups’ opposition

Bipartisan group defends sequoia tree bill in California despite environmental groups’ opposition

Science
June 23 (UPI) -- A bipartisan trio of lawmakers defended the "Save Our Sequoias Act" on Thursday despite more than 80 environmental groups signing a letter to Congress opposing the act earlier this month. The bill introduced on Wednesday is aimed at expediting reforestation and protection efforts in California's Sequoia National Forest. But more than 80 environmental organizations signed a letter to members of Congress earlier this month, arguing that the bill could do even more damage to giant sequoias by weakening environmental regulations. "Protecting the iconic Giant Sequoias is an important goal, but this legislation would weaken existing environmental law to expedite potentially harmful logging projects that undermine the ecological integrity of sequoia groves and will do nothing to...
UK environmental protections ‘being flouted’

UK environmental protections ‘being flouted’

Science
Getty ImagesEnvironmental campaigners have accused the government of hypocrisy by setting out environmental protection principles while simultaneously flouting them.UK ministers have just published long-awaited principles that will inform government decision-making.They say they intend to put the environment at the heart of their policy.But the document exempts the Treasury and the Ministry of Defence from being bound by the principles.And environmentalists complain that the principles are meaningless anyway, because the government presses on with activities that will harm the planet – such as the planned Cumbria coalmine and the £27bn road-building programme. The principles have been laid out in a consultation document linked to the Environment Bill. Following Brexit, these principles wil...
Biden environmental challenge: Filling vacant scientist jobs

Biden environmental challenge: Filling vacant scientist jobs

Technology
Polluting factories go uninspected by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Leadership positions sit vacant at the U.S. Geological Survey's climate science centers. And U.S. Department of Agriculture research into environmental issues important to farmers is unfinished.The ranks of scientists who carry out environmental research, enforcement and other jobs fell in several agencies — sharply in some — under former President Donald Trump, federal data shows. Veteran staffers say many retired, quit or moved to other agencies amid pressure from an administration they regarded as hostile to science and beholden to industry.That poses a challenge for President Joe Biden, who must rebuild a depleted and demoralized work force to make good on promises to tackle climate change, protect ...
Environmental value of renewable energy varies from place to place

Environmental value of renewable energy varies from place to place

Science
Dec. 14 (UPI) -- New investments in green energy won't have the same impact everywhere, researchers say. Some places will gain greater environmental benefits from renewable energy sources than others, according to a new study published Monday in the journal Nature Sustainability. Advertisement "For years, researchers have taken different approaches to try to assess the environmental benefits of renewable energy," study co-author Harrison Fell said in a news release. "The Energy Information Administration started releasing detailed data on renewable power generation in 2018, and we realized that we finally had an opportunity to address this issue using real-world data," said Fell, an associate professor of energy economics at North Carolina State University. The newly published study is t...

Court orders FDA to assess environmental impact of GM salmon

Technology
A federal judge has ordered the Food and Drug Administration to assess the potential environmental impact of genetically modified salmon previously approved by the agencyBy CANDICE CHOI AP Food & Health WriterNovember 6, 2020, 1:42 AM• 3 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleNEW YORK -- A federal court judge ordered the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Thursday to conduct an environmental assessment of genetically modified salmon that he said was required for the agency’s approval of the fish.But the judge did not vacate the FDA’s approval of the salmon for human consumption in the meantime, because he said the risk for near-term environmental harm is low.“The FDA has to go back to the drawing board and do its homework,” said George Kimbrell, legal director for...