Environmentalism

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Business, environmental, trade union and social groups all see advantages in looking beyond high-emission industries such as coal-fired power. Nick Pitsas/CSIRO/Wikimedia Commons

Australia’s ‘climate roundtable’ could unite old foes and end the carbon deadlock

The Australian Climate Roundtable unites business, environmental and social groups in calling for a strong climate policy. This unprecedented show of unity might even break down Canberra's climate stalemate.
The court ruled that Dutch citizens have a legal right to be protected from climate change. Moyan Brenn/Flickr/Wikimedia Commons

What does the Dutch court ruling on climate targets mean for Australia?

For the first time, a court has ordered a government to strengthen its climate targets. It's a watershed, not just for the Netherlands but potentially for countries such as Australia whose targets have been criticised.
Take that extra hour off work. Just don’t spend it burning coal or petrol. Rawpixel/Shutterstock.com

Want to help the environment? First fix your work-life balance

Being time-poor makes it harder to be green, says a study which shows that people who work long hours are more likely to fall short on taking real action to address their environmental concerns.
Cyclone Pam struck the developing island nation of Vanuatu in March 2015. Poorer nations are more exposed to environmental dangers so are more concerned about impacts that might increase the risk. AAP Image/Dave Hunt

Wealthy nations overlook the dangers of climate change

Who cares more about environmental issues: people in rich countries, or not-so-rich countries? A survey suggests it's those in poorer places who are more vulnerable to issues like climate change.
Bjorn Lomborg seems to irritate the hell out of many environmentalists. AAP Image/Alan Porritt

Bjorn again

Bjorn Lomborg seems to inspire anything but consensus, but is his approach all that bad?
Can we take responsibility for an increasingly human-driven planet? (Photo by Mark Klett) Witness to Sunrise, Muley Point, Utah.

What does it mean to preserve nature in the Age of Humans?

Scientists, philosophers, historians, journalists, agency administrators and activists grapple with what it means to 'save nature' in the Anthropocene.
Friends of the Earth is among the environmental groups that have been criticised in some quarters as ‘anti-jobs’. Friends of the Earth/AAP Image

Government inquiry takes aim at green charities that ‘get political’

A federal government inquiry that reportedly threatens the tax-deductibility status of dozens of environmental groups is the latest move towards quieting outspoken green groups, writes Peter Burdon.
China’s government says it plans to tackle smog, but has also moved to shut down criticism on the issue in the wake of a popular online documentary. EPA/DIEGO AZUBEL

China’s ‘Silent Spring’ has many more political hurdles to jump

Under the Dome, a hugely popular online documentary about China's smog crisis, could be as influential as 1962's US pesticide exposé Silent Spring - but only if Chinese officials allow debate to flourish.
A dead coral reef in the Caribbean. Coral reefs are extremely vulnerable to climate change and ocean acidification. superqq/Flickr

In Conversation with environment journalist Elizabeth Kolbert

Scientists are coming to the conclusion that we are on the brink of a mass extinction — the sixth known in the history of the Earth, and the latest since an asteroid killed off the dinosaurs 65 million…
Extreme fire is part of life in places like San Diego, USA, pictured earlier this month. But local fire captain Richard Cordova says it’s “very odd for the month of May to have these types of fires”. Michael Nelson/EPA

Forget ‘saving the Earth’ – it’s an angry beast that we’ve awoken

Environmentalism is undergoing a radical transformation. New science has shown how long-held notions about trying to “save the planet” and preserve the life we have today no longer apply. Instead, a growing…
Beautiful one day … a quarry the next? Underwater Earth / Catlin Seaview Survey - www.catlinseaviewsurvey.com

Great Barrier Reef decision is a U-turn to an inglorious past

Few of us remember that the declaration of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and its subsequent World Heritage status was born out a 12-year popular struggle to prevent the most wondrous coral reef in…
Research shows the environment usually comes off second best when companies are forced to compromise between sustainability and profit. Mohammad Rhaman/Flickr

In the corporate fight club, the environment usually loses

A commitment to sustainability has become a typical component of any modern-day corporation’s public face. Visit the homepages of major organisations in any sector, from coal-mining to cola-making, and…
The not just cold, but troubled waters of the Russian Arctic. Will Rose/Greenpeace

Jailing Greenpeace activists will harden attitudes to Russia

Russia’s overreaction in prosecuting Greenpeace protesters, including the two journalists, is set to unfold into an international scandal that will seriously damage country’s global reputation. So far…
It is possible to be a Christian and to reject the idea humans are at the centre of creation. Justin Brown

Can Christianity and population control co-exist?

Despite the views of some church leaders - such as George Pell - who deny global warming, most Christians understand the need to care for the natural world and have embraced the scientific consensus on…
Hands up for the environment. Cathal McNaughton/PA

Green NGOs cannot take big business cash and save planet

When she wrote recently that “big green groups” are doing more harm than good when it comes to saving the planet, Naomi Klein was was right to be concerned. In recent years the environmental agenda has…

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