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Wednesday, 18 April


Baboon Friends Team Up To Break Out Of Research Lab "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

A group of baboons, held captive at a Texas research facility, succeeded in escaping from their captors over the weekend experiencing, perhaps for the first times in their lives, what its like to be free.

Their stint on the run was ultimately short-lived. But now, as new details have emerged describing just how they pulled it off, its clear that the breakout was no accident.

The incident took place at the Southwest National Primate Research Center (SNPRC), on the grounds of the Texas Biomedical Research Institute in San Antonio. SNPRC is described as having the world's largest captive baboon population housing some 1,100 baboons used as test subjects in laboratory studies.

Those not being used in active studies apparently live here, in an open-air enclosure surrounded by walls.

Credit: Google Maps

On Saturday afternoon, four young male baboons managed to get up and over those walls, leaving the enclosure. Three of the baboons went on to breach the facility's perimeter fence escaping the compound entirely.

One baboon was seen by a passerby making his getaway do...


People Spot Strange Blue Ball Scurrying Through Their Yard "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

A family was out in their garden one day when they suddenly saw something small and blue scurry by. Concerned, and a little baffled, they contacted the RSPCA, who quickly came out to investigate and found it was a tiny hedgehog, completely covered in thick, blue paint. 

Credit: RSPCA

Concerned for the poor animals health, animal collection officer Clara Scully secured the hedgehog and rushed her to the RSPCAs West Hatch Wildlife Center, so she could get cleaned up as quickly as possible.

Thankfully she was still alive and is now getting the help she needs, Scully said in a press release. Were unsure what happened to her whether she was painted intentionally, or if she fell into the paint somehow.

Credit: RSPCA

Due to her blue coloring, staff at the shelter decided to name the hedgehog Sonic, after the popular video game character. Removing the paint has been an ongoing process, but luckily Sonic has been a good sport about it, and seems to be doing well in the RSPCAs care. 

Credit: RSPCA

Sonic has been eating well and is getting stronger, Dr. Bel Deering, center manager at the RSPCA West Hatch Wildlife Center, said in a press release. She had to be anesthetized to have the substance removed and there is still a blue tinge on the spines. The substance was very rubbery and hard to remove....


Matted Dog At Gas Station Knew Just Who To Go To For Help "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Leaving a gas station in San Antonio, Texas, two years ago, Donna Killough was met with what looked like a ball of knotted fur with eyes.

This little mop of a dog just walked up to me, Killough told The Dodo. She wouldnt let me touch her, but I think she was looking for food.

Credit: Donna Killough

Killough put a few potato chips on the ground, and when she turned her back, the little dog shuffled over and gobbled them up. Seeing how hungry and matted she was, Killough knew she couldnt go home without bringing the dog with her. (Killoughs son is also a video editor for The Dodo.)

Credit: Donna Killough

A man in the parking lot saw the dog, too, and luckily, he had a trap in his car to help Killough catch the dog. They placed some food inside, and after a few minutes, the dog went right inside.

Credit: Donna Killough

I brought her home and got her set up in a crate in the garage, Killough said. You could tell she was interested, but we werent sure if she wanted us to get too close. Then my husband put his hand near the crate and she started licking him. We opened it up and she just climbed into my lap. I told my husband right then, I love this dog!

They named her Daisy.

Credit: Donna...


2.3 Million Animals Were Killed By The U.S. Government Last Year "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

It was just announced that 2.3 million animals were killed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Wildlife Services in 2017 and it wasn't just wild animals caught in the cross fire.

In March, a dog named Casey was out walking with his favorite boy, Canyon, behind their home in Idaho when he came across an M-44 a capsule planted in the ground by Wildlife Services. These devices are full of cyanide and meant to attract and kill coyotes by poisoning them.

When the dog triggered the capsule, it exploded and poisoned him to death. Canyon was rushed to the hospital to make sure the poison didn't claim his life too. 

Credit: Theresa Mansfield

Credit: Theresa Mansfield

Since that shocking day, the Mansfield family has been taking action. They started speaking out about how much they miss their dog and how dangerous these M-44 devices really are. And their courage and persistence paid off the M-44 device was locally banned in Idaho thanks to them. 

But it wasn't just Casey a total of 149 dogs were killed last year by Wildlife Services, according to its newly released death tally from 2017. The overall tally of intentionally killed native animals, including bobcats, foxes, cougars, bears, wolves, coyotes and beavers who are killed by traps, snares, guns and poisons reached a staggering 1,320,075. When counting invasive species killed by the agency, the total increases to 2.3 million animals. This is down slightly from 2016, when...


Police In This City Have Been Secretly Shooting Stray Cats "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

In Jefferson, Iowa, its commonplace for local law enforcement to trap feral cats across the city but many residents assumed they were just brought to animal shelters.

They were being shot and killed instead.

Credit: Shutterstock

Scott Wilson, animal welfare intervention coordinator for the Animal Rescue League of Iowa, learned this last week when he traveled to Jefferson to look into calls from citizens who had heard rumors that trapped feral cats werent ending up at shelters.

We met up with the citys mayor and police chief, and they admitted that officers who didnt think cats could be adopted were euthanized by gunshot, Wilson told The Dodo. We discussed that, not only was this not the best solution to the problem, but it could also be in violation with Iowa state law.

Credit: Shutterstock

There are about three main cat colonies across the city, consisting of around 10-30 cats each. There is currently not a trap-neuter-return program implemented there, which means cats have been trapped and shot by police as means of population control for years. One city councilman told local news outlets that cats dont belong outside.

Credit: Shutterstock

If one started becoming a nuisance, police would be called, and if they didnt think it was owned by someone, they would take it out to be shot, Wilson said. We arent sure how long this has been taking place, but my guess is that it has been a long...


Little Girl Spots Something Unusual While Out For A Walk "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Anja Boot, her daughter and a few friends were hiking through Cradle Mountain National Park in Tasmania, Australia, a couple weeks ago when they encountered something quite unusual a baby wombat hitching a ride on his moms back.

It was actually Boots 11-year-old daughter, Ruby, who first spotted the wombat duo.

Ruby called out to me, Mum, there's a wombat here on top of another one, Boot told The Dodo. I must admit, I had no idea what she could have been meaning as I had never seen this before.

Credit: Anja Boot

When Boot went to have a look, she was pretty surprised.

"I saw Mama wombat about 10 meters [32 feet] away from us, with her baby trying to keep its balance on her back, Boot said. I had one of those overwhelming feelings of the wonder of nature. It was just so special  I've never seen anything like that before.

From a safe distance, they watched the wombat pair crawl through tufts of grass for several minutes while Boot snapped a few photos. Mama wombat would take a few steps to a new patch of grass and the baby would just manage to stay on, Boot said.

Credit: Anja Boot

But when the mother wombat decided to leap over a stream, the baby wombat ran into a touch of trouble.

There had been a huge amount of rain the week before, and the baby literally did a somersault in the air and landed down in the water, Boot said. I stood anxiously on the track waiting to see baby reemerge. The mama...


Exhausted 'Pet' Hadn't Had Anything To Eat In A Month "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

When a woman arrived at a wildlife hospital in Thailand, she was carrying something truly chilling. 

She told the people at Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand (WFFT) that she had received a gift last year; a relative from the southern region of the country had brought two animals up and given them to her.

Since then, she'd been keeping them in her house as pets. She named them Phet and Reang. They were Sunda slow lorises, and the moment they became pets they started slowly wasting away. 

Credit: WFFT

By the time their owner brought Phet and Reang to WFFT, they were in terrible shape, emaciated and very weak. 

"They were kept in a small cage in her house for a year until they both became very sick," WFFT wrote. "At this point she realized that she should not keep them as pets. The lady said she had fed them a diet of fruit, and one of them had not eaten for a month ... We were all shocked."

Credit: WFFT

Because of their wide, emotional eyes and sweet-looking demeanors, slow lorises suffer from being too "cute;" the vulnerable little animals are often stolen from the wild to be sold as pets. This often involves having their sharp front teeth painfu...


This Country Just Started Hunting Baby Seals Again "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Canadas annual seal hunt has started up again, much to the dismay of animal lovers around the world. In the past nine days, hunters have killed over 30,000 baby seals on the ice floes of eastern Canada and theyre planning to kill a lot more.

While seal hunting takes place year-round in Canada, the majority happens in the spring after new pups are born. Instead of allowing these baby seals to grow up, hunters kill them for their fluffy white pelts, which are sold to manufacturers to make fur coats and other clothing items.

Credit: Michael Bernard/HSI

This years seal hunt began last week, and it will continue until mid-May or even June, according to Rebecca Aldworth, executive director of Humane Society International (HSI).

Warning: Graphic photos below.

Aldworth has spent 18 years documenting Canadas seal hunts, and she finds this time of year to be particularly difficult.

For me, its the knowledge of how much those baby seals are suffering, Aldworth told The Dodo. Every year, I witnessed wounded seals left to crawl through their own blood, conscious seals impaled on boat hooks, dragged across the ice and cut open; and wounded seals escaping beneath the water's surface, where they die slowly and painfully.

Credit: Michael Bernard/HSI

The hunters mainly target baby harp seals, although they take grey seals and hooded seals as well. But no matter what type...


Audio: Impacts of agriculture on Brazils Cerrado region "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

On todays episode: the impacts of agriculture on Brazils Cerrado region. Listen here: Brazils Cerrado region is incredibly biodiverse, supporting more than 10,000 plant species, 900 birds, and 300 mammals. But it has long been overlooked by scientists and environmentalists alike, and as protecting the Amazon has become more of a priority in recent decades, much agricultural production in Brazil has moved from the rainforest to the vast Cerrado savannah. In February, Mongabay sent journalists Alicia Prager and Flvia Milhorance to the Cerrado region of central Brazil to report on the impacts of rapid expansion of agribusiness on the regions environment and people. Prager and Milhorance filed a series of six reports and theyre here to tell us what they found. Heres this episodes top news: Bowhead whales in the Arctic sing hundreds of complex songs Six staff killed in deadliest attack at Congos Virunga National Park Rubber plantation in Cameroon edges closer to UNESCO World Heritage Site Lost fairy lantern spotted in Malaysian Borneo after 151 years Colombia grants historic protections to rainforest, indigenous groups You can subscribe to the Mongabay Newscast on Android, Google Play, iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn, or RSS. If you enjoy the Mongabay Newscast, we ask that you please consider becoming a monthly sponsor via our Patreon page, at Just a dollar per month will really help us offset the production costs and hosting fees, so if youre a fan of our audio reports from natures frontline, please support the Mongabay Newscast at

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Tuesday, 17 April


Suspected poisoning takes down 11 lions in Uganda park "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Eleven lions were allegedly poisoned in a Ugandan national park in early April. Authorities discovered the bodies of three lionesses and eight cubs members of the same pride on April 11 in Queen Elizabeth National Park around Hamukungu, a fishing village in southwestern Uganda. Theyre believed to have eaten meat laced with poison. Ugandas lion population is around 500. Photo by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay. The countrys Minister for Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities pointed out the importance of lions in drawing tourists. We condemn in the strongest terms possible such an act of deliberately killing animals which are now a top foreign exchange earner to the country, Ephraim Kamuntu said in a statement posted on the Facebook page of the Uganda Wildlife Authority. Kamuntu said that nature tourism is worth $1.4 billion to Ugandas economy. Thats more than 5 percent of its annual gross domestic product, according to the United Nations. But in a country where each persons share of that total works out to less than $650, the loss of a herders livestock to big cats can be devastating, leading communities to seek retribution and contributing to a decline in the lion population across Uganda. Fewer than 500 lions remain. According to Kamuntu, the wildlife authority distributed a share of the profits from park entries totalling more than 929 billion Ugandan shillings (about $250,000) in 2017 to districts around Queen Elizabeth National Park for schools, health clinics and small business projects. Scientists believe that all of Ugandas lions

Response to critique on Conservation Effectiveness series (commentary) "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

The other members of the team behind Mongabays Conservation Effectiveness series and I appreciate the feedback on our series offered by Madeleine McKinnon and her colleagues. We believe that we and the authors of the commentary share the common goals of encouraging and enabling conservation actions based on the available scientific evidence, and increasing the standard of scientific studies that evaluate the impact of conservation. Before addressing the specific points made by McKinnon and her co-authors, we would also like to emphasize that our series and visualizations have additional goals: To make scientific evidence accessible to non-scientists. To increase the ease with which practitioners can orient themselves in and interact with scientific evidence in order to make informed opinions given the limited time they have. To demonstrate to a broad audience the complexity of scientific evidence and the different ways in which conservation success can be viewed. To inspire discussion about what conservation success means for different stakeholders, beyond scientists. Importantly, our goal was not to carry out a systematic review  an intensive, sometimes years-long process beyond the scope of our resources. We believe that systematic reviews are invaluable and crucial for answering specific, relatively narrow research questions. At the same time, they are not suitable for providing an overview of evidence of a wide range of outcomes, across a broad spectrum of evidence types, as we have tried to do with this series. Bias First, we disagree that the alternative to a systematic review is

Seek higher standards to honestly assess conservation effectiveness (commentary) "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

This commentary is in response to Mongabays Conservation Effectiveness series. You can read Mongabays response here. Scientists are keen to get better data and evidence into the hands of decision-makers and the public in general. However, systematically sorting, assessing and synthesizing scientific data from reams of journal articles takes time and resources. In an effort to get faster results, rapid methods for evidence synthesis are desirable, but their use can have substantial drawbacks and limitations that ultimately affect the accuracy and validity of findings. We applaud the launch of the Conservation Effectiveness series on Mongabay and its spotlight on the effects and effectiveness of prominent conservation strategies to a broad readership. However, some of the compromises made in expediting and simplifying their approach to synthesis have implications for replicability of the methods and confidence in the final results. Given that the series has the potential to reach new and influential audiences, we highlight several areas for caution and clarity. Bias One of the major benefits of systematic reviews and evidence syntheses is their ability to bring consensus around which strategies or actions are effective without motive or manipulation. The alternative is choosing single data points or cherry-picking results to fit a desired narrative. Thus efforts to avoid bias in determining which studies are included in a synthesis, and how they are assessed, are critical to facilitate a true reflection of an existing evidence base. Certified timber in Peru. Photo by Rhett Butler. The recent Conservation Effectiveness series was susceptible to


FIRE-EARTH Alert: FSCT 041702 "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

ALERT UPDATES AVAILABLE VIA FIRE-EARTH PULSARS! CJ OCT TML FIRE-EARTH Alert: FSCT 041702 Alert FSCT 041702 issued by FIRE-EARTH Science. Details available via FIRE-EARTH PULSARS. Alert FSCT 041702 . . . . . . Advertisements


Attack on Construction Vehicle in Solidarity with the ZAD and Camp White Pine "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Submitted to Philly Anti-Capitalist

Dear international anarchist thugs, illegalists, casseurs, and defenders of wildness,

we are reporting live from Philadelphia. An attack has just been made, throwing a wrench in the cogs of the machinery of progress well more literally some wires were cut and windows smashed on one of their bullshit bulldozers.

We have word that this attack was done in solidarity with the ZAD and Camp White Pine (hi! both of which are facing their own local bullshit bulldozers. The attackers have also sent rebel greetings to area anarchists whove been keeping it live (and especially those who share the specifics of their attacks to allow others to reproduce them).

Fuck work
Fuck progress

Signing off for now,
Team Illegal


Poland Violated Law by Logging UNESCO-protected Biaowiea Forest, Court Rules "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

At least 10,000 trees are believed to have been felled in the ancient forest since 2016


From Olympia: Long Live the Commune, Long Live La ZAD "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

from Its Going Down


The following report back was originally posted to the counter-info site, Puget Sound Anarchists.

We gathered on the railroad tracks where the Olympia Commune has been to send insurgent greetings from Olympia, Washington to the brave ones currently defending La ZAD from eviction by the French state.

La ZAD is an autonomous zone in France populated by farmers, squatters, anarchists, and others resisting the construction of a new airport. Their struggle was successful and the airport was halted, but contrary to the wishes of liberals and many socialists, they continue to occupy La ZAD to build the world in which they want to live.

While the commune in Olympia didnt last nearly as long, we twice blockaded railroad tracks carrying fracking equipment, and experimented with new liberated ways of living. It is with the memory of the freedom that we found behind the barricades that we send our love and solidarity. La ZAD is an inspiration to rebels and communards around the world.

Tout le monde deteste les flics!

With love,

-some Olympia anarchists


One Week At War for La ZAD: A Timeline "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

from Its Going Down

Since last Monday, the French State has been fighting to evict La ZAD, or the Zone to Defend, a stateless and autonomous region of French farmland that for decades has resisted the construction of an airport.

Over the last 6 years, hundreds of people have moved onto La Zad to stop the construction and in doing so, have built homes as well as a communal, anti-capitalist, and ecological way of life. The infrastructure found at La ZAD is extensive, from community meeting and banquet halls, a radio station, a weekly newspaper, and extensive farms and gardens. La ZAD has also grown to feature a wide variety of collectives, from farmers who have lived on the land for generations, to those who came experiment in new forms of life. In 2014, 21 year old Remi Fraisse was killed when a police flash bang grenade exploded during clashes over the construction of a dam, resonating with many at La ZAD and kicking off a fresh round of riots, attacks, and rowdy demonstrations.

In 2016, tens of thousands marched onto the territory and placed spears by the thousands into the ground in a statement that should the State move to evict La ZAD, that they would return to defend it. In January of 2018, it was then announced that the State would abandon the project, but still wanted to evict the hundreds of squa...


CO2 emissions from wildfires have fallen over past 80 years, study finds "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

The annual amount of CO2 emitted as a result of wildfires has fallen over the past 80 years, a new study finds.

The research finds that, over the past few decades, large areas of forest and savannah have been converted to cropland, meaning that the overall area that could be burned by wildfires has decreased.

However, this drop in wildfire emissions has not led to a large net drop in CO2 emissions from land use, the lead author tells Carbon Brief. This is because a rise in emissions from deforestation for cropland largely counteracted the decline in wildfire emissions over the past century.

The new research is innovative, but may overlook some factors, such as how wildfire severity has changed over time, other scientists tell Carbon Brief.

Feeling the burn

Most wildfires are triggered by humans as much as 90% in the US, for example while natural causes include lightning and lava. But the weather is the biggest driver of how far wildfires can spread. Temperature, humidity, rainfall and wind speed all play a role in providing the right conditions for a fire.

Wildfires play an important role in flammable ecosystems, such as forests, grasslands, savannahs, and shrublands. They can be managed to disperse plants, clear forests and promote grazing, or suppressed to protect human lives and property.

As plants burn, they release the carbon stored within their leaves, roots and trunks. This is why, on a large scale, wildfires can contribute CO2 to the atmosphere and, therefore, to the rate of climate change.

The new study, published in Nature Communications, estimates...


Connecticut: DAPL Protester Vic Lancia Arrested and Fined 1 Year After Wells Fargo Lockdown "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

by Dragonfly Climate Collective / Its Going Down

Update on Vic Lancia, who locked down to a Wells Fargo branch in Connecticut over a year ago against the Dakota Access Pipeline.

This an update and thank-you message for those who have supported our friend Vic Lancia. Almost one year after Vic shut down a Wells Fargo branch in Middletown, CT in April 2017, Vic was arrested in February 2018 and fined in March 2018.

On April 7 of last year, Vic, then about to turn 77 years old, locked himself to concrete barrels blocking the entrance to a Wells Fargo branch in Middletown during a protest against the banks funding of the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) and other fossil fuel infrastructure. Vics lock-down shut down the branch for nearly two hours. Meanwhile, 9 Wesleyan University students blocked the drive-through ATM. Police were unable to extract Vic from the barrels and made no arrests.

At the time, Vic offered the following statement:

Wells Fargo is a major funder of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Its full speed ahead for fossil fuels even as the destructive consequences of their use become more and more evident by the day. Their ONLY concern is profit! This is corporate tyranny! We, the people, will not continue to ignore th...


Heavy rain and floods killed 41 people, destroyed 3 000 homes in Rwanda "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Heavy rains that flooded Rwanda since the beginning of March killed at least 41 people and injured more than 160, Rwanda's Ministry of Disaster Management and Refugee Affairs said April 16, 2018. The agency added that floods unleashed by heavy rains also killed...... Read more


Poland Violated EU Laws by Logging in Biaowiea Forest, Court Rules "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

by Arthur Nelsen / The Guardian

The EUs highest court has ruled that Polands logging in the Unesco-protected Biaowiea forest is illegal, potentially opening the door to multi-million euro fines.

At least 10,000 trees are thought to have been felled in Biaowiea, one of Europes last parcels of primeval woodland, since the Polish environment minister, Jan Szyzko tripled logging limits there in 2016.

Greenpeace says that as many as 100,000 conifers and broad-leaved trees in the lowland forest may have been lost.

Poland had claimed that the chainsaws were needed to excise a spruce beetle outbreak but, in a damning ruling, the EU judges found that Polands own documents showed that logging posed a greater threat to Biaowieas integrity.

A minimum fine of 4.3m potentially rising to 100,000 a day  could now be levied against Poland unless the tree felling is stopped.

James Thornton, the chief executive of the green law firm ClientEarth, said: Thi...


Analysis: UK to seek advice on strengthening long-term climate goal "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

The UK government has announced that it wants official advice on the implications of aligning its climate goals with the Paris Agreement.

Claire Perry, the UKs energy and clean growth minister, confirmed the move earlier today during a speech at the meeting of Commonwealth leaders taking place in London this week.

The UKs current aim is to cut greenhouse gas emissions 80% below 1990 levels by 2050, based on avoiding 2C of global warming above pre-industrial temperatures. The Paris deal set a higher ambition of staying well below 2C and striving for 1.5C. It also called for net-zero emissions in the second half of the century.

The government will ask what this higher ambition means for the UKs long-term climate targets, after the the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) publishes a special report on 1.5C in early October.

Its official climate adviser, the Committee on Climate Change (CCC), has already said that a global 1.5C limit would mean a more ambitious 2050 goal for the UK, in the range of 86-96% below 1990 levels, as well as setting a net-zero target at some point. The UK may also need to tighten its legally binding five-yearly carbon budgets for the years before 2050.

Climate act

The UKs Climate Change Act, passed into law a decade ago...


Rhea Fire: Deadly Oklahoma wildfire has now consumed over 100 000 ha (246 000 acres) "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

The Rhea Fire that started on April 12, 2018 in Western Oklahoma grew quickly with Red Flag fire weather conditions and has now consumed over 100 000 hectares (246 000 acres). The fire is blamed for the death of 1 person so far. This fire is located in Dewey County,...... Read more


Campaigners hail 'huge victory' for forest defenders "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Campaigners hail 'huge victory' for forest defenders

Catherine Early 17th April 2018
Teaser Media


DANGER: Earth May Warm by 2 Celsius Degrees in the Coming Decade "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Prof. Ingraffea: Methane gas is increasing rapidly

World May Hit 2 Degrees of Warming in 10-15 Years, Due to Fracking

From an Article by Sharon Kelly, DeSmog Blog, April 11, 2018

In 2011, a Cornell University research team first made the groundbreaking discovery that leaking methane from the shale gas fracking boom could make burning fracked gas worse for the climate than coal.

In a sobering lecture released this month, a member of that team, Dr. Anthony Ingraffea, Professor of Engineering Emeritus at Cornell University, outlined more precisely the role U.S. fracking is playing in changing the worlds climate.

The most recent climate data suggests that the world is on track to cross the two degrees of warming threshold set in the Paris accord in just 10 to 15 years, says Ingraffea in a 13-minute lecture titled Shale Gas: The Technological Gamble That Should Not Have Been Taken, which was posted online on April 4.

Thats if American energy policy follows the track predicted by the U.S. Energy Information Administration, which expects 1 million natural gas wells will be producing gas in the U.S. in 2050, up from roughly 100,000 today.

The Difference of a Half Degree



Video: All you need to know about the shipping sectors new climate deal "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Last week countries agreed to a new emissions reduction target for the shipping sector, as part of a wider climate deal.

The headline target, agreed at an International Maritime Organization (IMO) meeting in London, is to peak and then reduce greenhouse gas emissions at least 50% by 2050, compared to 2008 levels. This is the first-ever international climate goal for the shipping sector.

Carbon Brief highlights the main things to know about the the new deal.

Absolute target

Most significant is the fact that the new climate deal includes an absolute emissions reduction target for shipping. It also calls for emissions to be phased out completely, though without any timeline. This is shown in the third point from the agreed strategy, below.

Extract from the initial strategy on reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from ships, adopted on 13 April 2018 at IMO headquarters in London.

Many countries were pushing for more ambitious targets, arguing that the 50% goal is not in line with the Paris Agreement. However, other...


Enzyme which can digest most commonly polluting plastics discovered "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Enzyme which can digest most commonly polluting plastics discovered

brendan 17th April 2018
Teaser Media


Puppy Found With Zip Tie Around Mouth Now Has A Whole New Life "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Driving down a country road in Travelers Rest, South Carolina, Liz Heatherly spotted something unusual out the window. It took a while to realize exactly what she was looking at, but when she did, it broke her heart.

A small, black puppy, barely 10 weeks old, was hobbling down the side of the curvy back road covered in fleas and ticks a cable tie, or zip tie, had been tightened around his jaw.

Heatherly parked the car in the first driveway she spotted, and doubled back on foot with her mom and sister. But wrangling the abandoned Lab-hound mix, who was spooked by passing cars, proved to be a difficult task.

Credit: Liz Heatherly

Once we walked back to the spot where we had seen him, he ran from us into a drainage ditch that was about 6 feet down, Heatherly told The Dodo. We had to slide on our bottoms to get down and my sister pulled us back up with a spare leash we had in the car.

The family immediately snapped the nylon cord off the puppys mouth, revealing open sores and severe scabbing where the plastic had rubbed his skin raw, and rushed him to the nearby Cleveland Park Animal Hospital.

Credit: Liz Heatherly

After a full medical exam, the vet, Dr. Bryant Phillips, determined the young pup was dehydrated, malnourished and suffering from intestinal parasites, but, in a stroke of luck, the zip tie had not caused any significant...


Woman Gets The Sweetest Surprise For Her 103rd Birthday "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

It's never too late to make a new best friend just ask this sweet centenarian named Lillian.

Credit: Ridgeview Gardens Assisted Living

Earlier this month, Lillian celebrated her 103rd birthday.

Her friends threw her a surprise party to mark the big day at Ridgeview Gardens Assisted Living in Utah, where she lives.

Credit: Ridgeview Gardens Assisted Living

There was plenty of good food, great company and birthday decorations but the biggest surprise was yet to come.

Credit: Ridgeview Gardens Assisted Living

A few years back, Lillian lost someone very dear to her her cat, Sammy. Her passing had left a hole in Lillian's heart, and she'd expressed a desire to have a feline in her life once again. In fact, that was her one birthday wish.

Meanwhile, across town, there was a homeless cat who had a wish, too. She wanted to find someone to love her.

And soon, both of their wishes were granted.

Credit: St. George Animal Shelter

Ahead of Lillian's birthday, staff at the assisted living facility contacted the ...


Dog Abandoned In Parking Lot Is So Grateful To The Woman Who Saved Him "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Someone spotted the pit bull in a lot near a busy road in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. He was all alone, and hed been sitting in front of a chain-link fence for at least an hour. Most likely, someone had dumped him there.

Last Thursday, Janine Guido, founder and president of Speranza Animal Rescue, received a phone call about the pit bull along with a photo and she immediately leapt into her car to get him.

Credit: Speranza Animal Rescue

Every time you get called in for a stray, your adrenaline is pumping and youre not sure if theyre going to run off or anything, Guido told The Dodo.

When Guido arrived at the site, animal control was already there, and the officer (whom Guido is on friendly terms with) had caught the dog and put him in his truck.

I went up to Fred [the officer] and I said, How is he? Guido said. He was like, He was growling and snapping a bit. I had to catch pole him. I said, OK. Can I see him?

Credit: Speranza Animal Rescue

The officer obliged and opened the back of his truck, revealing a trembling pit bull.

I see this poor little dog, Guido said. He was cowered down with the saddest look in his eyes. I looked at his tail, and it was tucked so tight. He was terrified.

The dog, whom Guido named Vincent, also had...


People Find Someone Unusual Hidden In Paris Apartment "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

A little lion cub now named King is finally feeling what it's like to be treated kindly but that was far from the case when he was found cowering in a wire cage last October in an abandoned apartment just outside Paris, France.

Credit: Born Free

After images surfaced on social media showing his "owner," a 24-year-old man, mistreating the scared little cub, the authorities managed to track the images to an apartment in Noisy-le-Sec. Firemen arrived just in time to save the starving cub. 

Thanks to the work of animal rescue organizations Fondation 30 Million dAmis and Refuge de lArche, King was transferred to a temporary enclosure at Natuurhulpcentrum rescue center in Belgium. 

King has already been through so much at just a few months old and he symbolizes so many thousands of other wild animals who are sold into the exotic pet trade just to be used and abused as playthings before being discarded.

That's why so many people want to do even more for him than just keep him safe they want him to truly feel at home.

Credit: Born Free

That's why the people at Born Free want to give King the...


Woman Does The Sweetest Thing For Dog Who Can't Sleep During Thunderstorms "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Bentley was adopted into his family three years ago after his former family moved overseas and couldnt take him with them. His new family is so happy they decided to take him in and couldnt imagine life without him. The 8-year-old Chihuahua is very tiny, and loves following his family around all day long because they make him feel loved and safe

Credit: Melanie Barr

Bentley is the most loyal little guy; he follows me and his human dad around the house trotting behind us to see what we are doing, Melanie Barr, Bentleys mom, told The Dodo. If you sit, he is instantly on your lap. He loves us unconditionally. I am lucky to work in a great environment that I can take Bentley to work with me; he visits everyone in the office, sitting on laps and generally being adorable. 

Bentley is definitely a very happy little guy but the one thing he is not at all a fan of is thunderstorms

Credit: Melanie Barr

Whenever a thunderstorm rolls in, Bentley immediately gets very on edge, and has a lot of trouble sleeping. He gets shaky and anxious, and ends up being up all night, even when his parents let him sleep in bed with them to try and ease his fears. 

Chihuahuas react to all emotions by shaking; their little bodies shudder uncontrollably, Barr said. Bentley has big wide eyes that get concerned. I think secretly he does like storms because he knows he gets extra special treatment! 

Credit: Melanie Barr



Rescue Cat Loves Rock Climbing With New Family "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

When Sandra Samman decided to adopt a cat, she knew she wanted one who shared her love for adventure, and could keep up with her fast-paced, outdoorsy lifestyle. When she met Denali, she immediately knew he fit the role but had no idea just how adventurous he really was, or how much he would love rock climbing with his new family. 

Denali and his littermates were rescued from a barn in New Mexico and brought to Foothills Animal Shelter in Colorado. The 2-month-old kitten had only been at the shelter for a few days before his new mom found him, and she immediately knew he was meant to be a member of her family. 

Credit: Instagram/denaligato

He is extremely curious, has an adventure spirit which I noticed right away at the shelter and knew he would be a great fit, Samman told The Dodo. He is brave and not at all shy, timid or scared. If he enters a new place he walks around like he owns it. 

Samman became an avid rock climber after a trip through Southeast Asia; she spends a lot of time climbing at the rock climbing gym as well as outdoors. From the very beginning, Denali wanted to be with his mom all the time, going wherever she goes, so she started bringing him to the climbing gym, and was amazed by how much he loved it. 

Credit: Instagram/denaligato

Sometimes he follows me up the boulder problems, Samman said. Sometimes I put him in his pack and let the kids take him up climbs; they love it! People literally lose their minds. Everyone loves it and...


No One Knew What Would Happen When 'Feral' Cat Met Family's Dog "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Running an animal sanctuary means that you hardly get any time off there's always another (adorable) mouth to feed or belly to rub. 

So when Kara Burrow who runs Ralphy's Retreat Animal Sanctuary in Ontario, Canada, with her husband, Kris finally had a night off, she planned to enjoy it with her husband. But the universe apparently had other plans. 

Through the sliding glass door that leads from her kitchen into the yard was a pair of gleaming eyes staring her down. 

Credit: Ralphy's Retreat

"As I walked into the kitchen, I saw a little black and white face peering in through the sliding doors," Burrow told The Dodo. "The cat had scratches all over his face. When he turned and ran away, I saw his tail was very badly injured."

Burrow's rescue focuses mostly on rescuing and rehoming pigs, but she had to do something. "I contacted a local trap-neuter-release program and borrowed a live trap," she said. But then she didn't see the little tuxedo cat for two days. "I thought he had gone."

Thankfully, the gleaming eyes revisited her. "One night, while shutting up the shipping container [a storage space for the sanctuary], I saw two eyes peering at me!" Burrow said. "I put the live trap in the container and locked the door. By morning, Ralph was in the trap."

And he did not seem happy. "Ralph was wild, hissing and running at the side of the trap," Burrow said. "He was also badly injured and needed a vet urgently."

Credit: Ralphy'...


Very Lucky Dog Has Scariest Potty Break Of Her Life "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

This sweet dog named Sprocket is one lucky pup. Thanks to her lightning-fast reflexes, she was able to make it out unscathed when a near-tragedy struck.

Credit: Ben Lucier

On Sunday, a powerful ice storm hit Sprocket's home in Ontario, Canada setting the scene for potential disaster. Little could Sprocket have guessed, of course, as she stepped out to do her business in the backyard afterward, that she was about to have the most perilous potty trip of her life.

High overhead from where she was standing, a large tree branch was about to snap.

A camera outside the home captured what happened next, and the dog's quick thinking that ultimately saved her life.

Sprocket's owner, Ben Lucier, was there to watch the whole thing unfold.

"I was at my back door calling for Sprocket to come in after her bathroom break, but she was dawdling," Lucier told The Dodo. "You can tell when the tree branch snapped because she started to run when she heard the crack. Nobody was hurt, except our fence and maybe the BBQ."

Things could have been much, much worse if it weren't for Sprocket's fast response.

Credit: Ben Lucier

"It was shocking," Lucier said. "Were really lucky. We could be mourning the loss of our little furball."

Lucier has some cleaning up to do now, of course, but what matters most is that Sprocket is safe.



Ice storm wreaks havoc across Toronto area, Ontario "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

A powerful ice storm brought freezing rain and ice pellets to much of southern Ontario on April 14 - 15, causing power outages, fallen trees, flooding and an almost unprecedented over 1600 collisions on slippery Toronto-area roads. Ontario Provincial...... Read more


Monsanto merger approved: What's next? "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Downcast farmer

Despite widespread opposition, The U.S. Department of Justice has green-lighted the Bayer-Monsanto merger. Next steps? Learn more

Slideshow Category: 


Study finds glyphosate in pregnant women "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Pregnant woman outdoors

A new study on glyphosate in pregnant women from Indiana confirms that this widely used herbicide ends up in peoples bodies. Learn more

Slideshow Category: 


Climate Engineering Insanity, Manufacturing Winter Weather With Tropical Moisture "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

a6e76Dane Wigington Planet Earth is being forced into an abrupt climate shift, the ongoing global climate engineering operations are further fueling the overall process. The combination satellite / radar image below reveals an extremely anomalous and alarming scenario: a massive, bizarre, and completely unnatural, straight, south to north flow of tropical moisture from the record warm waters


Farmworkers and Immigration "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Farmworkers in field

The vast majority of farmworkers in the U.S. are immigrants, and at least half are undocumented. The U.S. immigration system has created an unjust situation for many. Learn more

Slideshow Category: 

Monday, 16 April


Cooperative agroforestry empowers indigenous women in Honduras "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

GUALCINCE, Honduras The Lenca call it a sacrificial stone, where their indigenous  ancestors went to make offerings to deities. A triangle of rock with different circles inscribed on its surface, it has remained intact despite the passage of time. The woods that surround the village of Gualcince, almost at the border with El Salvador, bear marks of their past, too. It was here on Congoln Mountain that Indio Lempira, the famed Lenca leader of Honduran indigenous resistance, died. Lenca culture flourished here in the pre-Columbian epoch, and people still find ancient artifacts. The Lenca villages ancient sacrificial stone. Image by Monica Pelliccia for Mongabay Despite the great depth of history, there are new traditions starting here as well. Amanda Abrego, a 36-year-old mother of four who lives near the sacred stone, is a board member of the Cosagual Lenca cooperative of women coffee growers. Like 21 other female cafetaleras, she is now cropping organic coffee under the shadow of timber- and fruit-yielding trees, following the traditional agroforestry system that the Lenca indigenous group to which the famous environmental activist Berta Cceres belonged before she was assassinated two years ago developed before the arrival of Spanish conquerors, and they are selling it in a new way. In 2014, the women launched an all-female growers cooperative as a part of the Cosagual coffee growers organization. Eva Alvarado, 60, is one of the founders of the cooperative. All of my life I worked as a cafetalera, she says. When I was

Over 1 500 houses damaged, farms devastated as hailstorm hits northern Vietnam "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

Hailstorms and strong winds hit Vietnam's northern mountainous region on the evening of April 14, 2018, damaging houses and destroying crops. The storms have left many without a roof over their heads and destroyed crops that were ready for harvest. In the...... Read more


Unistoten Camp Spring 2018 Fund Drive! "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"


This winter has seen the greatest snowfall in living memory in the northern interior where the Unistoten Camp is located. This is addition to the extreme cold, and one more example of how the climate is changing and creating weather extremes of all kinds.

Around the healing centre the snow level reached the roof overhang of the kitchen/mess hall section. And of course the camp is located in the valley of the Wedzin Kwah (Morice River) so spring break-up could bring flooding both from the immediate vicinity and upstream.

The Camp has launched an urgent appeal for funds to purchase a used back hoe to do essential repair and protection work to prevent damage to the buildings and infrastructure that has been built with so much effort over the past number of years. Please go to our GoFundMe page, contribute what you can,  and share widely with friends and other land defender supporters to help us reach our goal.

You can always sustain the camp on a regular basis by becoming a monthly donor or by making a direct one-time donation on the Unistoten Camp DONATE page...


[Announcement] FIRE-EARTH Tribunal in Absentia: High Crimes Against Nature "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

CJ OCT TML FIRE-EARTH Tribunal: Rape, Pillage and Plunder of Planet Earth FIRE-EARTH Tribunal in Absentia for the Prosecution of Persons and Entities Responsible for High Crimes Against Nature, RPP of Planet Earth UPDATE The Tribunal hearings will resume on September 24, 2018. Full details and Record of Proceedings available via FIRE-EARTH PULSARS. FIRE-EARTH Tribunal []


Law Enforcement Has Quietly Backed Anti-Protest Bills in at Least 8 States Since Trumps Election "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

by Simon Davis-Cohen and Sarah Lazare / In These Times

MINNEAPOLIS POLICE UNION PRESIDENT LT. BOB KROLL told In These Times that he lobbied Minnesota lawmakers to advance a statewide law clamping down on protestslegislation that civil liberties advocates say targets Black Lives Matter.

The pending bill, HF 390/SF 676, would significantly increase fees and jail time for protesters who block highways, a common civil disobedience tactic, including at protests against police killings. According to the ACLU of Minnesota, the proposed legislation chills dissent and constitutes an attempt to silence Black Lives Matter movement.

I knew they were trying to pass it last year, and I encouraged them to do it again, Kroll told In These Times.

His acknowledgement of the lobbying by his union, Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis, raises concerns that law enforcement is pressuring legislators to clamp down on protestsand specifically, on protests against police violence. Cops are go...


France: Report from April 15, or, The Magic of the ZAD! "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

from Contra Info

Despite the state of siege imposed by the government, a crowd of 15,000 to 20,000 people has succeeded, whatever the cost, in reaching different points of the ZAD this Sunday. This afternoon new groups are arriving all the time. Since this morning, the state has done everything possible to break this huge surge of solidarity: there are road blocks and checkpoints everywhere; police checkpoint policeman at the exit lanes of the motorways, asking drivers not to to try to go to the solidarity gathering. This is the first time that the state has tried to prevent a big demonstration of this kind on the ZAD, and to wind up the tension. But here the collective spirit has not allowed itself to be intimidated by any such thing: the ZADs supporters know the country paths, and the fields, and they have been moving in groups in order to get round the police blockades. The movement that succed in forcing the abandonment of the airport project is here again today, in all its strength and diversity, to defend the ZAD.

At 2.00pm there was a solemn moment at the Bellevue Farm. The thousands of sticks and clubs (batons) planted on the 8th of October 2016 were dug up from the ground. We had made a solemn promise to come and collect them if ever the ZAD came under renewed attack. That time has now come!



British public overwhelmingly support greater fisheries protections after Brexit "IndyWatch Feed Enviro"

British public overwhelmingly support greater fisheries protections after Brexit

brendan 16th April 2018
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