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Environmental Issues

Factory animal farms produce meat through routine torture and environmental destruction


Public and environmental health is being severely threatened through the institution of animal factory farming, which pollutes our water, air, soil and even our bodies with harmful chemicals and pollutants. Corporations now have taken over the practice of family farming and have developed cost-saving mass-production strategies that are not only dangerous to public health, but are also cruel to the animals being processed.

Accelerated Warming Driving Arctic Into New Volatile State


Global warming is rapidly driving the Arctic into a volatile state characterized by massive reductions in sea ice and snow cover, more extensive melting of the Greenland ice sheet, and a host of biological changes, according to a comprehensive report published by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) on Wednesday.

Gulf spill harmed small fish, studies indicate


Two years after BP’s Deepwater Horizon well blowout, laboratory studies are finally offering clues to the spilled oil’s impact on sea life. Brief, very low exposures to oil were capable of killing many fish embryos and hatchlings, new studies show. Those that survived often exhibited major deformities that would diminish an animal’s fitness.

Slowing cargo ships cuts pollution near ports by more than half, study finds.


Slowing cargo vessels near coastlines by 10 to 15 miles per hour could dramatically cut ships’ air pollution, according to a new study. But only a few U.S. ports have initiated such efforts. A speed limit of 14 mph, down from the current cruising speeds of 25 to 29 mph, would cut nitrogen oxides – a main ingredient of smog – by 55 percent and soot by almost 70 percent. It also would reduce carbon dioxide – a potent greenhouse gas and key contributor to climate change – by 60 percent. With 100,000 ships carrying 90 percent of the world’s cargo, air pollution is a heavy burden for people living near ports, so slowing ships could improve their health, researchers say.

90% Chance 2012 Will Be Warmest Year on Record for US


Continuing a hot trend, October was the fifth warmest across the globe since record keeping began in 1880. And climate scientists say it's likely, about 90 percent so, that 2012 will become the warmest year on record for the contiguous United States.

New oil sheen prompts another investigation of BP Deepwater Horizon disaster scene


An overflight inspection of the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster site 40 miles south of Grand Isle this past weekend found a new, mile-long oil sheen, which has prompted the U.S. Coast Guard to again require BP to inspect the wellhead and debris area on the floor of the Gulf of Mexico with a remotely operated vehicle for the source of the oil. The flight was piloted by Bonny Schumaker, founder of the California-based non-profit On Wings of Care, which has conducted surveillance flights in the Gulf in the two years since the spill.