environment correspondent
Alister's Feed
Mar 8, 2011

Carbon capture projects up in 2010, despite costs

OSLO, March 8 (Reuters) – The number of projects for
capturing greenhouse gases from power plants and factories edged
up in 2010 despite soaring costs and slow progress in U.N.-led
efforts to slow climate change, a study showed on Tuesday.

The focus of carbon capture and storage (CCS) projects also
shifted more to the United States from Europe even though U.S.
President Barack Obama has failed to persuade the Senate to
legislate caps on U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, it said.

Mar 8, 2011

Eco-farming can double food output by poor: U.N.

OSLO (Reuters) – Many farmers in developing nations can double food production within a decade by shifting to ecological agriculture from use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides, a U.N. report showed on Tuesday.

Insect-trapping plants in Kenya and Bangladesh’s use of ducks to eat weeds in rice paddies are among examples of steps taken to increase food for a world population that the United Nations says will be 7 billion this year and 9 billion by 2050.

Mar 6, 2011

Lead and asbestos in homes need tighter control

OSLO (Reuters) – The health risks from toxins such as lead in old paint or asbestos in walls are too often overlooked when homes are upgraded, according to a study on Sunday calling on governments to set tougher pollution rules.

The report, by Canadian experts, said that retrofits of old buildings, such as insulation meant to save energy and limit greenhouse gas emissions, often released poisons that can be especially damaging to children.

Mar 6, 2011

Lead, asbestos in homes need tighter control: study

OSLO (Reuters) – The health risks from toxins such as lead in old paint or asbestos in walls are too often overlooked when homes are upgraded, according to a study on Sunday calling on governments to set tougher pollution rules.

The report, by Canadian experts, said that retrofits of old buildings, such as insulation meant to save energy and limit greenhouse gas emissions, often released poisons that can be especially damaging to children.

Mar 4, 2011

Norway says to widen carbon capture technology hunt

OSLO, March 4 (Reuters) – Norway will consider a wider range
of technologies for a long-delayed flagship carbon capture
project to avoid health worries from chemicals in the original
plan, the government said on Friday.
Environmentalists have strongly criticised Oslo for delays
in the project designed to limit greenhouse gas emissions from
the Mongstad oil refinery on the west coast, and have accused
its operator Statoil (STL.OL: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) of reluctance to invest.

A white paper presented to parliament said the government
now favoured looking at a wider range of technologies than in
the original plan to use amines, derivatives of ammonia meant to
separate carbon dioxide from exhaust gases at the plant.

Mar 3, 2011

Some Antarctic ice forms from the bottom up

OSLO (Reuters) – Some of Antarctica’s ice sheet is formed by water re-freezing from below not just by snow falling on top as was traditionally thought, findings showed on Thursday that will help scientists project effects of climate change.

Experts are seeking to understand the frozen continent since even a small thaw could swamp low-lying coastal areas and cities. Antarctica contains enough ice to raise world sea levels by about 57 meters (187 ft) if it ever all melted.

Mar 3, 2011

UN postpones “green fund” climate talks to April

OSLO (Reuters) – The United Nations postponed until April on Thursday a 40-nation meeting due to start designing a green fund to help poor nations fight climate change, missing a March deadline amid disagreements about who should attend.

Groups of Asian and Latin American and Caribbean nations have yet to decide their delegates for the first meeting of a so-called Transitional Committee, which had been due to meet in Mexico this month to work on a “Green Climate Fund”.

Mar 2, 2011

U.N. climate talks seen missing aid plan deadline

OSLO (Reuters) – A plan by almost 200 countries to step up efforts to fight climate change is set to miss a March deadline for starting work on a green fund to help developing nations, delegates said on Wednesday.

Groups of Asian, and Latin American and Caribbean countries have yet to decide who will gain early influence in designing the “Green Climate Fund” by attending 40-nation U.N.-led talks due in Mexico City on March 14 and 15.

Feb 23, 2011

U.N. “climate vulnerability” list urged to guide aid

OSLO (Reuters) – A climate “vulnerability index” to judge which developing countries are most at risk from global warming and in need of aid is among the proposals submitted to a U.N. body ahead of new climate talks in April.

The proposal is among submissions to the United Nations that also show a deep split between rich and poor countries about how to oversee billions of dollars to help developing nations adapt to impacts such as droughts, heatwaves, floods or rising seas.

Feb 22, 2011

Forest bugs seen aided by creeping climate change

AAS, Norway, Feb 22 (Reuters) – A spruce tree has smothered
a few beetles by oozing resin from its trunk, repelling an
attack by bugs that seem to be advancing northwards with climate
change in a threat to forests and timber companies.

Other sickly spruce trees scarred by bark beetles have been
less successful in the snow-covered forest near Oslo, where
scientists are seeking ways to halt insects whose relatives have
caused millions of dollars in damage in North America.