More than 130 whales die in mass stranding in Western Australia How effective are earthquake early warning systems? Plastic patch in Pacific Ocean growing rapidly, study shows Ocean plastic could triple in decade Europe faces ‘biodiversity oblivion’ after collapse in French birds, experts warn Can climate litigation save the world? London air pollution activists ‘prepared to go to prison’ to force action Climate change soon to cause mass movement, World Bank warns Drugs, plastics and flea killer: the unseen threats to UK’s rivers Billion-dollar polar engineering ‘needed to slow melting glaciers’
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Dirty kitchen roll among things Britons wrongly think they can recycle

British consumers are in the dark about exactly what household waste they can recycle, a new poll has revealed, with plastic soap dispenser tops, dirty kitchen roll and wrapping paper topping the list of things they wrongly consider recyclable. Research shows that Britons are more aware than ever of how recycling can help the environment. However, […]

World’s great forests could lose half of all wildlife as planet warms – report

The world’s greatest forests could lose more than half of their plant species by the end of the century unless nations ramp up efforts to tackle climate change, according to a new report on the impacts of global warming on biodiversity hotspots. Mammals, amphibians, reptiles and birds are also likely to disappear on a catastrophic […]

Microplastic pollution in oceans is far worse than feared, say scientists

The number of tiny plastic pieces polluting the world’s oceans is vastly greater than thought, new research indicates. The work reveals the highest microplastic pollution yet discovered anywhere in the world in a river near Manchester in the UK. It also shows that the major floods in the area in 2015-16 flushed more than 40bn […]

Burning coal may have caused Earth’s worst mass extinction

Earth has so far gone through five mass extinction events – scientists are worried we’re on course to trigger a sixth – and the deadliest one happened 252 million years ago at the end of the Permian geologic period. In this event, coined “the Great Dying,” over 90% of marine species and 70% of terrestrial vertebrate species […]

Microplastics are ‘littering’ riverbeds

Microscopic plastic beads, fragments and fibres are littering riverbeds across the UK – from rural streams to urban waterways. This is according to a study that analysed sediments from rivers in north-west England. Scientists from the University of Manchester tested river sediments at 40 sites throughout Greater Manchester and found "microplastics everywhere". There is evidence […]

Scientists seek public’s help to map plastic on UK beaches

Food wrappers, fishing nets, bottles, straws and carrier bags are among the top 10 plastic items littering British beaches, according to new research. An interactive map of the UK published Friday to coincide with British Science Week highlights the most common and unusual plastic pollution of the coastline. Among the most found items were plastic bottles, straws, plastic […]

Krill can turn microplastics into nanoplastics – study

A world-first study by Australian researchers has found that krill can digest certain forms of microplastic into smaller – but no less pervasive – fragments. The study, published in Nature Communications journal on Friday, found that Antarctic krill, Euphausia superba, can break down 31.5 micron polyethylene balls into fragments less than one micron in diameter. The study […]

UN moves towards recognising human right to a healthy environment

It is time for the United Nations to formally recognise the right to a healthy environment, according to the world body’s chief investigator of murders, beatings and intimidation of environmental defenders. John Knox, the UN special rapporteur on human rights and the environment, said the momentum for such a move – which would significantly raise the global […]

You can deny environmental calamity – until you check the facts

One of the curiosities of our age is the way in which celebrity culture comes to dominate every aspect of public life. Even the review pages of the newspapers sometimes look like a highfalutin version of gossip magazines. Were we to judge them by the maxim “Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small […]

Climate change ‘impacts women more than men’

Women are more likely than men to be affected by climate change, studies show. UN figures indicate that 80% of people displaced by climate change are women. Roles as primary caregivers and providers of food and fuel make them more vulnerable when flooding and drought occur. The 2015 Paris Agreement has made specific provision for […]


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