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Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate change

This is where you can talk about every subject (previously it was called shout room)

Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Mon Oct 21, 2019 1:00 pm

California Will Build the Largest
Wildlife Crossing in the World


The overpass will provide safe passage for mountain lions, coyotes, deer, lizards, snakes and other wild animals crossing the 101 Freeway

Experts hope the bridge will enable mountain lions to find potential mates and increase the local population's genetic diversity

A planned animal overpass set to stretch over Los Angeles’ 101 Freeway has entered its final design phase, Christopher Weber reports for the Associated Press. Dubbed the Liberty Canyon Wildlife Crossing, the 200-foot-long bridge—expected to provide safe passage for lions, coyotes, deer, lizards, snakes and other wild creatures—is on track for groundbreaking within the next two years and slated to open by 2023.

According to Weber, the crossing will enable Southern California’s native wildlife to more freely roam the region’s urban sprawl. Currently, animals hoping to cross the highway are at high risk of becoming roadkill; as a result, most are essentially trapped in the Santa Monica Mountains, unable to venture out in search of food and potential mates.

This limited geographic range poses a particular threat to mountain lions. Per a study published in the journal Ecological Applications this March, two isolated populations in the Santa Ana and Santa Monica Mountains face extinction within the next 50 years due to low genetic diversity and mortality linked with human activity and environmental changes. By connecting solitary big cats with other members of the species, the Liberty Canyon overpass could curb mountain lion inbreeding and reintroduce genetic diversity to local populations.

“When the freeway went in, it cut off an ecosystem,” Beth Pratt, director of the National Wildlife Federation’s California branch, tells the AP’s Weber. “We’re just now seeing impacts of that.”

Pratt adds, “They can’t get out of here to get dates, and cats can’t get in to get dates. ... For those of us in L.A., having a romance prospect quashed by traffic is something we can all relate to.”

Weber explains that 80 percent of the funds needed to construct the $87 million bridge will come from private sources, while the remaining 20 percent will be drawn from public funds allocated toward conservation campaigns. According to authorities, the Liberty Canyon Wildlife Crossing will be not only the first of its kind built near a major metropolis, but the largest in the world.

As a #SaveLACougars campaign report notes, the proposed design features a 165-foot-wide by 200-foot-long bridge constructed at the freeway’s 33.0 mile marker. Stretching across 10 lanes of highway traffic, the overpass will also include an extension above nearby Agoura Road. Per Avishay Artsy of a KCRW local radio show, the crossing will strive to resemble an extension of the surrounding mountainside, boasting extensive plant cover, as well as sound- and light-blocking barriers.

Speaking with National Geographic’s Starre Vartan in April, Rob Ament, road ecology program manager at Montana State University’s Western Transportation Institute, said that under- and overpasses can reduce mortality rates and monetary costs associated with wildlife-vehicle collisions by 85 to 95 percent.

First introduced in France during the 1950s, such crossings are popular in Europe and becoming increasingly common across the world. Last December, cameras spotted the first wild animal to use an overpass built above Washington State’s Interstate 90, and in October, California opened its first wildlife crossing at a spot near Temecula, around 60 miles north of San Diego.

Southern California’s most famous mountain lion, a male known as P-22, is the poster child for the #SaveLACougars campaign—or as Pratt calls him “the Brad Pitt of the cougar world.” Because he lives in a park miles from the crossing, he likely won’t end up using it, but many of his relatives are poised to benefit from the bridge, reports AP’s Weber.

Lions rarely cross local freeways successfully, but the Orange County Register’s Martin Wisckol writes that a 4-year-old male dubbed P-61 made his way across the 405 freeway unimpeded just last month. P-22 made a similar journey years ago, crossing the 405 and 101 highways to reach his current home in Griffith Park.

According to the cougar campaign’s report, P-22’s living situation is “less than ideal,” as he is now virtually trapped in the confines of the Los Angeles park and unlikely to be joined by a potential mate anytime soon. As the report states, “Building a wildlife crossing will help other mountain lions avoid P-22’s fate.”

Clark Stevens, an architect with the Santa Monica Mountain’s Resource Conservation District, tells Weber that “ideally, the animals wil never know they’re on a bridge.”

He concludes, “It’s landscape flowing over a freeway. It’s putting back a piece of the ecosystem that was lost.”

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-ne ... rhrfdpx.01
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Mon Oct 21, 2019 1:07 pm

British Columbia ends grizzly bear hunt, calls it ‘no longer socially acceptable’

"It's no longer socially acceptable to the vast majority of British Columbians to hunt grizzly bears," said Doug Donaldson, the Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources

The government estimates there are about 15,000 grizzlies in the province.

The province's environment and forests ministers announced the ban on Monday, saying they were acting on the basis of a program of consultation with stakeholder groups, the public and First Nations, most of whom recommended a ban to protect the bears.

The move follows, and effectively expands, an August commitment to end the trophy hunting of grizzly bears and stop all hunting of grizzly bears in the Great Bear Rainforest.

Mr. Donaldson told a news conference he did not expect that the continuing First Nations hunt would kill many bears, suggesting there are less than 100 hunters who use bears for food. He said about 250 bears were killed a year by resident and non-resident hunters.

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of British Columbia Indian Chiefs said he welcomed the ban because he supported an end to the "barbaric practice" of hunting the animals. He said few members of the First Nations community are involved in hunting the bears.

In response to a question from The Globe and Mail, the forests ministry said First Nations guides would not be able to facilitate access to grizzly bears for non-native hunters.

Mr. Donaldson said the government would look at transition measures for businesses affected by the ban, including easing businesses into the effort to observe grizzlies as opposed to hunting them, but provided no further details.

Joe Foy of the Wilderness Committee environmental group called the measure "tremendous news" that sets a global example. "This is worldwide news," Mr. Foy told reporters after the government announcement, declaring British Columbia one of the world's great hopes to hold onto the species.

"Some nations still allow trophy hunting for big beautiful creatures. This is a word out to the world that says times are changing and changing because so many creatures are on the decline. We've got to start to look out for them, not kill them for fun."

In remarks addressed to hunters, Mr. Donaldson said the NDP knows hunting is important to many British Columbians. "This is not the thin edge of the wedge," he said. "This is a specific species, an iconic species."

Existing penalties for illegally killing grizzly bears will be applied under the new status quo. Under the Wildlife Act, tickets are $345. In what the ministry described in a statement as more extreme cases, a first conviction in court can lead to a fine of up to $100,000 or a one-year jail sentence.

http://www.whitewolfpack.com/2017/12/br ... P5Jj87-avE
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sun Oct 27, 2019 3:29 am

Dairy’s dirty secret

It is still cheaper to kill male calves than to rear them. The number of male calves being killed straight after birth is on the rise again, despite efforts by the dairy industry to end the practice known as ‘the dirty secret’

A Guardian analysis shows that it can cost a farmer up to £30 per calf to sell it on for beef or veal, while early disposal costs just £9. A growing number of farmers feel compelled to take the latter option, with 95,000 killed on-farm in the most recent set of figures.

Dairy farms depend on female cows to produce milk, so when male calves are born, they are surplus to requirements and farmers are currently faced with few options.

They can immediately dispose of the calf, either by shooting it themselves or contracting a knackerman to do it [licensed slaughter business that will kill or collect dead farm animals]. They can sell the calf to be raised for veal or beef. Or they can sell the calf for live export. A few farms are experimenting with keeping the calves with the mothers for longer, but this is an expensive and rarely chosen option.

Early disposal is known as the ‘dirty secret’ by farmers, and none relish it. But keeping the calf to sell on to be raised for beef or veal means the farmer will have to rear them for two to four weeks to a good enough weight to interest buyers, at a typical cost of around £2 a day, with selling prices at market as low as £25-40. This doesn’t include extra costs such as getting the calf to market, registering its birth or veterinary bills.

In contrast, shooting the calf costs as little as £9, including the cost of the knackerman who will incinerate the body, or in some cases send them to kennels to be turned into dog food. Calves shot on farm cannot enter the human food chain and farmers can only dispose of calves themselves if they have a licensed incinerator.

Dairy farmers in the UK have been under extreme pressure to cut costs for the last two decades, with milk long used as a loss leader by supermarkets to draw shoppers into their stores. “Some farmers might do the maths and figure out after rearing, transport and time away from the farm it might not add up,” says Chris Dodds, from the Livestock Auctioneers’ Association (LAA).

The estimated 95,000 calves disposed on-farm represents 19% of the male dairy calves born, according to the most recent figures from the dairy industry body AHDB. In 2013 the number had fallen to 13% of male dairy calves born from a previous 21%. The exact numbers shot on farm is difficult to collate as farmers destroying calves within a few days of birth on farm do not need to register the birth - and neither does the company collecting and disposing of the animal.

One dairy farmer, who asked to remain anonymous, explained to the Guardian that she could not find a market for her male calves. “This year we’re shooting the Jersey crosses, because we’ve not got the space or money to keep them. It doesn’t make me feel good.

“We get the knackerman out to do it. I could never do it. I can’t even feed them if I know they are going to be dead in a few days.” She said the issue was still “kept under the carpet” by the wider food and farming industry and that consumer markets needed to be developed and farmers financially supported to rear the calves.

Another farmer told the Guardian: “I shoot black and white bull calves [the Holstein Friesian breed that predominates the dairy sector in the UK], but am still not hardened to like doing it. We have too many calves here. The space available on the farm [an 800-cow dairy herd] is only suitable for a maximum of 80. The less calves I have the better for the overall farm. This is a business and it has to be financially viable to make it worthwhile.”

A joint NGO, retailer, farming and government initiative to promote markets for bull calves, that closed in 2013, estimated more than £100m was being lost from calves killed before realising their economic worth.

The alternatives to early disposal are not simple. Half a million calves used to be exported from dairy farms via ferries to the continent, which has a larger market for veal.But public protests and industry pressure against animals being sent on long journeys in lorries and lower animal welfare standards in other countries has seen that outlet largely disappear. No calves were exported from England last year, although an estimated 5,000 calves did leave from Scotland and a further 20,000 from Northern Ireland.

Attempts to promote a market for high welfare British rosé veal, championed by the likes of Jamie Oliver and Jimmy Doherty, have met with mixed success with margins for farmers tight and consumer interest low. The RSPCA is calling for the food industry to be allowed to rename veal as rosé beef to end consumer misconception of it as a white meat produced from calves kept in crates and fed milk – a system that was banned in the UK in the early 1990s.

Another alternative is to rear the calves for longer and sell them as beef. One of the companies doing that is Buitelaar, set up in 2006 and which collected more than 35,000 calves from dairy farms across the UK last year. It arranges for them to be reared indoors on a mixed diet and then sold after 12-14 months through UK supermarkets, restaurants and fast food chains. But some breeds such as Jersey cows are not seen as suitable for this option.

There has been a steady growth in the use and effectiveness of sexed semen since the early 1990s, accounting for 18% of total semen sales in 2017. It increases costs for farmers but can reduce the proportion of male calves being born to less than 10%.

Supermarkets could play an important role in reforming the situation and providing a market for meat from bull calves. Tesco, Aldi, Iceland, Lidl, the Co-op and Asda do not ban their milk suppliers from shooting bull calves and it is not outlawed under organic standards. But some of the large chains – the Co-op, Morrisons, Sainsburys and Waitrose – have launched schemes, in conjunction with beef companies such as ABP, Buitelaar and Dunbia, to collect calves and ensure they are reared rather than destroyed.

The National Farmers’ Union (NFU) warns that post-Brexit trade deals could make it harder for farmers to find a market for male calves. “A trade deal that allows cheap beef from countries with lower standards of production will most definitely damage many of the positive initiatives that have been developed over recent years to utilise dairy bull calf beef and veal within the UK market,” said NFU dairy advisor Siân Davies.

A small number of dairy farmers are experimenting with trying to make more use of the bull calves. David Finlay, who runs Cream O’Galloway, one of the UK’s largest ethical dairy farms in southwest Scotland, keeps his male and female calves with their mothers for the first five months. The male calves are then reared separately before being sold to a veal producer at eight months.

He loses a large proportion of the milk produced by the female cows, but says his use of a dual purpose breeds of cows (good for milk and meat) means he gains a better market price for the animals. “The message coming to farmers from their peers and the industry is still to chase litres at all costs. But if you are chasing milk there will be a cost in terms of bull calves.”

https://www.theguardian.com/environment ... tc0azI3XZk
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Nov 01, 2019 7:03 pm

Pipeline Leaks 383,000 Gallons of Oil

A part of the Keystone Pipeline was shut down after it was discovered the system leaked about 383,000 gallons — or 9,120 barrels — of crude oil in North Dakota

The leak, which occurred northwest of Edinburg, North Dakota, affected a wetland area, Karl Rockeman, director of the state’s Department of Environmental Quality’s division of water quality, said in a statement.

TC Energy, the company that operates the pipeline, said it discovered a drop in pressure and began shutting down parts of the pipeline on Tuesday. The company said a cause of the spill was not yet known and would require an internal investigation and an analysis of the pipeline.

“We are establishing air quality, water and wildlife monitoring and will continue monitoring throughout the response,” TC Energy said in a statement. “There have been no reported injuries or impacted wildlife.”

The oil spill occurred on a part of the already existing Keystone pipeline, and not the Keystone XL — an addition to the pipeline system that TC Energy is planning to build despite years of protests against it from indigenous people and climate activists. While President Barack Obama rejected a permit to build the pipeline in 2015, President Donald Trump approved it shortly after taking office in 2017.

The Trump administration has issued a presidential permit to pipeline builder TransCanada to build the Keystone XL pipeline X(

Environmental organizations responded to reports of the leak with concern, saying it was a manifestation of their worst fears about what could happen with the building of a pipeline like the Keystone XL.

“This is exactly the kind of spill we are worried about when it comes to the Keystone XL being built. It has never been if a pipeline breaks but rather when,” said Joyce Braun, frontline community organizer of the Indigenous Environmental Network.

Catherine Collentine, associate director of the environmental organization Sierra Club, also said the leak was an example of what people could expect from the pipeline in the future.

“We don’t yet know the extent of the damage from this latest tar sands spill, but what we do know is that this is not the first time this pipeline has spilled toxic tar sands, and it won’t be the last,” Collentine said in a statement. “We’ve always said it’s not a question of whether a pipeline will spill, but when, and once again TC
energy has made our case for us.”

The leak marks the pipeline’s second major spill in two years — a 2017 oil leak in South Dakota was discovered last year to have spilled more than 400,000 gallons of oil after the pipeline broke.

https://time.com/5716106/keystone-pipeline-leak/
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Nov 01, 2019 10:20 pm

Delhi to undergo odd-even
50L masks to be given


The Delhi government on Friday issued a notification to implement the odd-even road rationing scheme from November 4-15

Noting that the pollution situation has worsened in Delhi, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said the Centre, as well as the governments of Punjab and Haryana, should give a timeline to stop stubble burning.

He said the order for staggered office timings of the Delhi government has also been issued.

The offices of various departments of the Delhi government will open at 9.30 AM and 10.30 AM, he said.

The chief minister said no surge pricing will not be done by app-based cabs during the odd-even scheme.

He said the government will distribute 50 lakh anti-pollution masks in the city in the coming one week.

Kejriwal said it is wrong on the part of opposition parties to blame and curse the people of Delhi for high level of air pollution.

http://www.asianage.com/india/all-india ... given.html
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sat Nov 02, 2019 12:12 am

Race to save Kurdistan’s
endangered plant species


A small yet dedicated team of scientists is racing against time, climate change, and destructive human activity to document the Kurdistan Region’s indigenous plant life before it vanishes from the slopes of the Zagros Mountains

“Kurdistan is one of the hotspots for biodiversity and plant diversity – not just in the Middle East but in the entire world,” said plant taxonomist Saman Abdulrahman Ahmad during a recent interview in the office of the Kurdistan Botanical Foundation (KBF) at the American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS).

Abdulrahman is director of KBF, which was founded as a non-profit organization by a group of botanists and environmentalists in 2013.

The Kurdistan Region sits at a confluence of habitats, topographies, and climates, stretching from the Nineveh Plains to the permanently snow-capped peaks in the Zagros Mountains. It is here that arid desert climes of the Arabian Peninsula meet the temperate air of the Mediterranean. These variations make the region rich in plant life.

In a basement at AUIS, KBF regularly adds to its herbarium, which now stores some 60,000 samples of wild plants collected around the Kurdistan Region. Plants collected in the field are carefully dried and frozen in a six-week process before being catalogued and stored in the chilled room.

Saman Abdulrahman shows an astragalus glochidiatus maassumi specimen collected in Welayar, Sulaimani province, stored in the Kurdistan Botanical Foundation’s herbarium, where around 60,000 wild plant samples are held at the American University of Sulaimani-Iraq, October 3, 2019. Photo: Hannah Lynch / Rudaw

Despite its richness, little is known about the diversity of plant life here. “Still there are so many species nobody knows what they are in the mountains,” said Abdulrahman.

When KBF began its floristic study of the Azmer and Goizha mountains that overlook Sulaimani, historical knowledge indicated 56 plant species existed within the zone. “But when KBF surveyed there, they discovered more than 600 species. So there is a big gap in the historical information,” said Nariman Ahmad, a member of the foundation specializing in plant biotechnology.

The foundation has also completed studies in Qaradagh, where they found around 950 wild, native species, and Hawraman, where they collected more than 1,000 plant samples. They are now one year into a four-year study of the Halgurd-Sakran area.

The team is not just cataloguing flora. KBF is also making new discoveries. It researchers have found 45 species that are new to Iraq and 25 that are new to science. One is the cousinia azmerensis, a flowering plant named for Mount Azmer where it grows.

“I love it. I see them like my children,” said Abdulrahman, who has personally discovered 15 species.

Cousinia azmerensis, however, is classified as critically endangered because precious few mature samples were found in the field and located in a limited area.

“Most of the species we have discovered as new are endangered,” Abdulrahman explained.

The environment of the Kurdistan Region faces threats from all sides. The World Bank projects Iraq will get hotter and drier over the next three decades. The regional government’s environmental controls over sectors like the oil industry, gravel mining, and household waste are poor. Millions of acres of forests in the Zagros Mountains have been lost to deforestation, the bombs of Turkey and Iran, and the lack of funding for protection.

Thirty-year old landmines from the Iran-Iraq war and ongoing military activity along the border means swathes of territory are off limits for KBF’s teams. “Especially the areas on the border between Iraq and Iran, in the past, nobody could go there. There are a lot of minefields and military from Iranian side and Iraqi side they don’t allow people to go there and collect materials,” Abdulrahman explained.

Conserving Kurdistan’s wildlife from these threats is the second stage of KBF’s long-term strategy. They are seeking funding for a project to preserve the wild oak trees that grow in the Zagros Mountains and Ahmad hopes to establish a national gene bank of plant species that would involve collecting the seeds and genetic materials of Kurdistan and Iraq’s wild, indigenous flora.

“We are working towards a goal, which is the conservation of the wild and the plant species in Kurdistan,” Ahmad explained. “We think that due to the global warming, climate change, and human activities by overusing natural resources, many plant species are going to disappear. That’s why we have to plan to conserve these.”

https://www.rudaw.net/english/kurdistan/011120192
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sat Nov 02, 2019 12:21 am

Kurdish park rangers
crack down on tree felling


As the weather grows colder, Kurdish park rangers have ramped up efforts to prevent locals from felling trees, mainly in the Kurdistan Region's border areas

A lack of heating oil provided by the KRG is said to have sparked the crisis.

"As winter nears, we have increased our mobile teams to the countryside and forests to prevent the cutting down of trees," Hemin Kamar Khan Afandi, media officer of the Sulaimani Forests and Environment Rangers, told Rudaw on Thursday, explaining that trees are cut down for two reasons.

"First, under the guise of not receiving heating oil from the government, some people cut down trees for heating, especially in the border areas," Kamar Khan said. "The other group of people cutting trees are those who want to make and sell charcoal."

"In a raid on Wednesday we managed to arrest two people caught cutting down trees in the town of Garmk" in Penjwen, east of Sulaimani on the Iranian border, he added.

People in the remote areas of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI) have limited access to national electricity. Small generators do not produce enough amperes to power heaters, which is why they turn to the more cost-efficient kerosene or wood for heating.

The KRI does have park rangers who are responsible for protecting nature. However, during the fight with the Islamic State group (ISIS) many were ordered to take up arms to defend their homeland.

In a separate raid in the same region, 12 coal kilns were destroyed, he added.

"Our teams are out all the time warning locals not to cut down trees or burn them, but unfortunately, there are still some people not heeding to our warnings and we are forced to take all measures against violators," he added.

The KRG's Ministry of Agriculture conducted a survey of green sites last year in cooperation with universities in Zakho, Salahaddin, and Garmian.

Using satellite imagery and remote sensors, they found that green areas now make up just over 12 percent of KRI territory. The province of Duhok has the highest rate of green space with just over 27 percent, followed by Halabja with 10 percent. Sulaimani and Erbil both have nine percent green space.

According to the survey seen by Rudaw, 1.3 million acres of forest have been burned in the past eight years, 57 percent of that in the past three years.

"Human beings are vastly behind wildfires in Kurdistan, unfortunately," Khan added.

According to Khan, 41 people were arrested for starting wildfires in 2019, down from 19 the previous year.

The head of the Committee of Environment and Health Affairs for the KRG warned that the government must hasten efforts to provide heating oil for people living in the border areas.

"As the environment committee of the Kurdistan Parliament, we have called upon the government to begin to provide heating oil to the people and the priority must be to the mountainous and border areas," Dr. Sabah Mahmood, head of the Environment and Health Affairs committee, told Rudaw English.

"Our people in the mountainous region are destitute. The government must provide them heating oil and not wait for Baghdad to do it. The government must not leave any space for people to cut down trees under the pretext that they not have heating oil."

"The cutting down of trees is a grave danger to the environment, particularly in Kurdistan where the level of greenery is no match of even the standard level," Mahmood warned.

Deforestation is a contributing factor to environmental degradation, added geologist Hawkar Ali.

"Losing forests will leave behind scores of negative implications, the top of which is degradation, landslides, greenhouse gases and climate change," Ali said.

The government will have to take necessary measures to prevent the cutting down of trees, including providing heating oil, he aid.

He added that the government will have to take necessary measures, including providing heating oil to locals, to prevent them from felling trees.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/kurdistan/311020191
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sat Nov 02, 2019 12:56 am

Life of pigs in
Gestation Crates


Gestation crates have become the center of much controversy in recent years. These crates are designed to house sows on factory farms in a manner that allows pork companies to continuously breed and produce in a “highly efficient” manner

These crates are so small a pig will never get the chance to turn around for their entire lives, let alone see their own tails. The sad truth is 95 percent of pork in the United States comes from pigs raised in a factory farm. It is no wonder that animal activists are fighting for a ban of these cruel crates.

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), “Gestation stalls were developed as a way to make efficient use of space and keep expenses low while preserving good nutrition and health of individual sows.” So if raising pigs in a gestation crate is considered to be the most efficient method of producing “healthy,” cost-effective commodities even by veterinary standards, why would or should pork industries change? Well … perhaps there’s a bit more to the story.

To get a better idea of what life is like for a pig in a gestation crate, let’s imagine for a second…

It’s dark, and the air is filled with repugnant smells and piercing echoes of screaming. But these types of conditions are all you have ever known – they’re normal. What’s that smell? It’s your own waste, piling up underneath you. Breathing is a challenge. Moment after moment passes. But you don’t know how long it’s been because there’s no way of knowing time when you’re confined behind dark, cold walls, staring at metal bars pressing up against your soft nose.

What could be behind you? Who knows. Those bars are so constricting that you’ll never have the opportunity to turn around. Lying down is hard enough, but sometimes you just can’t stay on your feet because the unnatural slatted concrete floors cause your legs immense pain. You might already have arthritis and you’re only two years old.

You don’t know who you are, but you can imagine you are doomed to the same hopeless future as the hundreds of other individuals surrounding you.

The Typical Experience of a Gestation Crate Sow

Can you even imagine living one day with these conditions? This is not fiction. This is real. This is the life of an artificially inseminated soon-to-be mother pig confined in a gestation crate, where she spends the majority of her existence (besides the time she spends in a farrowing crate – Read more about it!)

Sows in gestation crates are typically bred 5 to 7 times in their lives to produce piglets that will be slaughtered before 6 months of age. When a sow’s breeding production declines, her life, too, is brutally ended. And for what? Well, cheap, “convenient” pork, produced in a manner that allows industrial farms to make maximized profits.

Housing pigs in gestation crates allows farmers to mass produce these animals within an indoor environment. Many dominant farming systems (called “Megafarms”) contain over 10,000 breeding sows per unit, some with over 100,000 in one location. The pigs are kept in separate crates, so that they can’t tear each other apart from frustration due to intense confinement. However, they are still mutilated by having their tails cut off (called docking) and their ears tagged for identification. Separation also allows for workers to more conveniently manage individuals.

Pigs kept in gestation crates generally weigh between 600 and 900 pounds. So, a pregnant pig weighing a little over 800 pounds would be about 5.6 feet long and have a girth (circumference) of 5.7 feet. Her gestation crate measures 6.6 feet long with a width of 2.2 feet. Now imagine that…take a look at life from within a gestation crate:

This is What Life Inside a Gestation Crate is Like for a Pig

Image

How You Can Prevent Suffering

    Learn how to embrace a plant-based lifestyle!

    Learn more about where the food you buy comes from.

    Write letters to food industries explaining why they should not support gestation crate pork industries.

    Take part in events for raising public awareness of factory farming.

    Learn about ethical organizations you could support through donations.

    Volunteer at a farm animal sanctuary to help rescued pigs and other animals previously from factory farms.

    Be a conscientious consumer and learn about corporations that support gestation crates.

    Sign or create petitions against gestation crates.

    Share this post on social media and tell your friends, family, and acquaintances what you learned.

https://www.onegreenplanet.org/animalsa ... 6iRW2xWhzg
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sat Nov 02, 2019 11:01 pm

Fracking halted in England

The government has halted fracking in England with immediate effect in a watershed moment for environmentalists and community activists

Ministers also warned shale gas companies it would not support future fracking projects, in a crushing blow to companies that had been hoping to capitalise on one of the new frontiers of growth in the fossil fuel industry.

The decision draws a line under years of bitter opposition to the controversial extraction process in a major victory for green groups and local communities.

The decision was taken after a new scientific study warned it was not possible to rule out “unacceptable” consequences for those living near fracking sites.

The report, undertaken by the Oil and Gas Authority (OGA), also warned it was not possible to predict the magnitude of earthquakes fracking might trigger.

Fracking, also known as hydraulic fracturing, involves pumping water, chemicals and sand underground at high pressure to fracture shale rock and release trapped oil and gas.

The government said it would not agree to any future fracking “until compelling new evidence is provided” that proves fracking could be safe. The UK’s only active fracking site at Preston New Road in Lancashire was brought to an immediate halt this summer after fracking triggered multiple earth tremors that breached the government’s earthquake limits.

Andrea Leadsom, the business and energy secretary, said the government has always been clear that shale gas exploration in the UK must be carried out safely.

“After reviewing the OGA’s report into recent seismic activity at Preston New Road, it is clear that we cannot rule out future unacceptable impacts on the local community. For this reason, I have concluded that we should put a moratorium on fracking in England with immediate effect,” she said.

The moratorium marks a major U-turn for the Conservative party and the prime minister Boris Johnson, who once referred to fracking as “glorious news for humanity” and urged the UK to “leave no stone unturned, or unfracked” in pursuit of shale gas.

The government ended its support for the struggling industry less than a week after a damning report from Whitehall’s spending watchdog found its plans to establish fracking across the UK was dragging years behind schedule and had cost the taxpayer at least £32m so far without producing any energy in return.

Rebecca Newsom, the head of politics at Greenpeace UK, said it has “been clear for some time that the government’s big bet on fracking is bust”.

The decision has been welcomed as a “victory for common sense” by green groups and campaigners who have fought for almost a decade against the controversial fossil fuel extraction process.

Craig Bennett, the chief executive of Friends of the Earth, said: “This moratorium is a tremendous victory for communities and the climate. For nearly a decade local people across the country have fought a David and Goliath battle against this powerful industry. We are proud to have been part of that fight.”

Tom Fyans, from CPRE, said the countryside charity would “celebrate alongside the local communities, campaigners and environmentalists who have been campaigning valiantly to stop fracking for many years”.

“This is a fantastic win for local democracy and everyone who cares about protecting the countryside from climate catastrophe and mass industrialisation,” he said.

Rebecca Long Bailey MP, the shadow business and energy secretary, said the moratorium was a victory for local people and the government owed them an apology. She said: “When the Tory government overruled local democratic decisions to halt fracking, communities did not give up. When fracking protesters went to jail, communities did not give up. And now they have forced the government to U-turn.

“The Tories owe the public an apology, and an explanation of how much public money they wasted while ignoring the science.”

Long-Bailey said the government could yet allow fracking to restart. “The next Labour government will ban fracking – whereas the Tories will only call a temporary halt to it. You can’t trust a word the prime minister says.”

The government revealed its fracking moratium alongside plans for a major review of the UK’s transition to a green economy. The Treasury said it will assess how the UK can make the most of the economic green shoots which are expected to emerge while moving towards a carbon neutral economy by 2050.

Sajid Javid, the chancellor, said the review was a vital next step” in delivering the government’s 2050 climate target while “supporting growth and lancing costs” to avoid “placing unfair burdens on families or businesses”.

“We must all play a part in protecting the planet for future generations,” he added.

The Treasury’s support for a green economy comes after Downing Street shot down claims made by the former chancellor, Philip Hammond, that tackling the climate crisis would cost £1tn and require spending cuts for schools, hospitals and the police force.

In a swift rebuke, No 10 said plans to create a net zero-carbon economy would cost no more than the UK’s existing plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The interim report will be published in the spring, ahead of a final report in the autumn before the global UN climate talks, which will be hosted Glasgow.

Simon Clarke, the exchequer secretary to the Treasury, said it was “humbling to launch this unprecedented review into how we end the UK’s contribution to climate change”.

“Until recently people said that ‘Net Zero’ was impossible, but this work is a giant step towards making it happen, enabling us to set out a roadmap for an economy that is cleaner, more efficient, and works for everyone, while preserving our planet,” he said.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment ... jor-u-turn
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sat Nov 02, 2019 11:07 pm

Brazilian forest
guardian slaughtered


A Brazilian indigenous land defender has been killed in an ambush by illegal loggers in an Amazon frontier region

According to a statement by the Brazilian Indigenous Peoples Association, Paulo Paulino Guajajara was shot and killed inside the Araribóia indigenous territory in Maranhão state. Another tribesman, Laércio Guajajara, was also shot and hospitalised and a logger has been reported missing. No body has yet been recovered.

Sérgio Moro, the justice minister of far-right president Jair Bolsonaro’s government, confirmed that Brazil’s federal police were investigating the killing. “We will spare no effort to bring those responsible for this serious crime to justice,” he tweeted.

The tribesmen are members of an indigenous forest guard called Guardians of the Forest, which formed in 2012 to ward off logging gangs pillaging their rare, hardwood-rich reserve.

Their work involves armed patrols and destroying logging encampments and has earned them dangerous enemies. Several Guardians in Maranhão have been killed in recent years, including three from Araribóia.

According to Gilderlan Rodrigues, Maranhão regional coordinator of Brazil’s indigenous missionary council, the murdered tribesman had been threatened several times. “Their work bothers those that want to loot their territory,” he said, adding that the killers were from a nearby rural settlement and had entered the reserve without permission. “These criminal actions must be combated so that more lives are not lost.”

The 4,130 sq km (1,595 sq miles) Araribóia indigenous reserve is home to an estimated 5,300 indigenous Brazilians of the Guajajara tribe and the Awá, an isolated group described as the “world’s most endangered tribe”. It concentrates much of the last remaining Amazon rainforest in Maranhão state

Sarah Shenker, senior research and advocacy officer at Survival International, who knew the murdered tribesman, described it as an “island of green amid a sea of deforestation”. She said the killing was “a crime foretold”.

Earlier this year Paulino told Survival International: “It makes me so mad to see this [forest destruction]. These people think they can come here, into our home, and help themselves to our forest? No. We won’t allow it. We don’t break into their houses and rob them, do we? My blood is boiling. I’m so angry.”

The reserve is officially protected by the Brazilian government but is constantly targeted by logging gangs and has long been a hotbed of violent conflict. In 2015, a former enforcement operations coordinator with Brazil’s environmental agency Ibama, Roberto Cabral, was shot there.

In June this year, the Araribóia Guardians’ leader, Olímpio Guajajara, recorded a video calling for help from the Brazilian state after reporting that gunmen were being paid to kill them and indigenous houses had been shot at.

“We don’t want war, we want to resist,” he said. “We want the Brazilian authorities to help protect the lives of the Guardians that are threatened.” The video was sent to the Brazilian government.

Few land conflict-related killings in Brazil result in convictions, which advocates say has produced a culture of impunity. According to Brazil’s pastoral land commission, a rural violence watchdog, of 157 land conflict killings in Maranhão state between 1985 and 2017, just five cases went to court.

Since the beginning of this year, when Bolsonaro took office, observers noted that attacks and invasions of indigenous lands had soared in Brazil as environmental and indigenous protection agencies suffered cuts and interference.

“The indigenous genocide of Brazil is legitimised by the discourse of the president,” said indigenous leader Sonia Bone Guajajara, who is from the Araribóia reserve and is currently in Europe with the campaign Indigenous Blood: Not a Single Drop More.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/ ... -in-ambush
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sun Nov 03, 2019 10:33 pm

India air pollution at unbearable levels

Air pollution in the north of India has "reached unbearable levels," the capital Delhi's Chief Minister Arvid Kejriwal says

In many areas of Delhi air quality deteriorated into the "hazardous" category on Sunday with the potential to cause respiratory illnesses.

Authorities have urged people to stay inside to protect themselves.

Mr Kejriwal called on the central government to provide relief and tackle the toxic pollution.

Schools have been closed, more than 30 flights diverted and construction work halted as the city sits in a thick blanket of smog.

A sign reading "Keep Delhi clean" with a thick smog in the background Image copyright AFP
Image caption Only cars with odd or even number plates can drive on given days in a bid to reduce pollution

Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain advised the city's residents to "avoid outdoor physical activities, especially during morning and late evening hours".

The advisory also said people should wear anti-pollution masks, avoid polluted areas and keep doors and windows closed.

How bad is the smog?

Levels of dangerous particles in the air - known as PM2.5 - are far higher than recommended and about seven times higher than in the Chinese capital Beijing.

An Indian health ministry official said the city's pollution monitors did not have enough digits to accurately record pollution levels, which he called a "disaster".

Five million masks were handed out in schools on Friday as officials declared a public health emergency and Mr Kejriwal likened the city to a "gas chamber".

The World Health Organization (WHO) says a third of deaths from stroke, lung cancer and heart disease are due to air pollution.

"This is having an equivalent effect to that of smoking tobacco," the WHO says on its website.

How are people reacting?

Mr Kejriwal's most recent comments are unlikely to please government officials, reports the BBC's South Asia regional editor Jill McGivering. She said Indian politicians were blaming each other for the conditions.

On Sunday young people in Delhi came out to protest and demand action.

"You can obviously see how terrible it is and it's actually scary you can't see things in front of you," said Jaivipra.

She said she wanted long-term and sustainable anti-pollution measures put in place.

"We are concerned about our futures and about our health but we are also fighting this on behalf of the children and the elderly who bear the biggest brunt of the problem here," she said.

Some ministers have sparked controversy on social media by suggesting light-hearted measures to stay healthy.

Harsh Vardhan, the union minister for health and family welfare, urged people to eat carrots to protect against "night blindness" and "other pollution-related harm to health".

Meanwhile, Prakash Javadekar, the minister of the environment, suggested that you should "start your day with music", adding a link to a "scintillating thematic composition".

"Is that the reason you have turned deaf ears to our plight on pollution?" one Twitter user responded. "Seems you are too busy hearing music that you are not able to hear us!"

What's caused the pollution?

A major factor behind the high pollution levels at this time of year is farmers in neighbouring states burning crop stubble to clear their fields.

This creates a lethal cocktail of particulate matter, carbon dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and sulphur dioxide - all worsened by fireworks set off during the Hindu festival Diwali a week ago.

Vehicle fumes, construction and industrial emissions have also contributed to the smog.

Indians are hoping that scattered rainfall over the coming week will wash away the pollutants but this is not due until Thursday.

Link to Article - Photos:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-india-50280390
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Mon Nov 04, 2019 1:36 pm

Indian capital bid to curb
hazardous pollution


Authorities in India’s capital New Delhi banished from the roads cars with number plates ending in an odd number on Monday in a bid to cut hazardous air pollution shrouding the city

The U.S. Embassy air quality index, which measures the concentration of tiny PM 2.5 particles that can be carried deep into the lungs, exceeded 500, indicating serious aggravation of heart and lung disease, and premature mortality in people with existing diseases and the elderly.

Pollution at this level also means a serious risk of effects on the respiratory systems of the general population.

The city government has declared a public health emergency, and imposed an “odd-even” system on private vehicles, at least until Nov. 15.

On Monday, drivers with even-numbered licence plates were the lucky ones. Morning traffic was thin and drivers appeared to be obeying the rule - a Reuters reporter saw no vehicles with odd-numbered licence plates on the streets.

“It’ a huge inconvenience because I’m not going to make it on time for my meetings,” said Sagar Bajaj, 29, struggling to find a taxi in central Delhi’s busy Connaught Place.

Bajaj said he normally drives to work, but his car’s licence plate ends in and odd number.

Ride-hailing services were exempt from the rule and both Uber and Ola had announced they would not impose surge pricing for the duration of the odd-even scheme.

In Delhi, Vijay Goel, a lawmaker from Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), decided to defy the “odd-even” system by driving his car which had a number plate ending in an odd number.

Expressing his differences with the city government, which has decided to ration road use to bring down the number of vehicles, Goel said cars contribute only 3% of Delhi’s pollution.

POLLUTION POLITICS

Neither the BJP, the governing party at federal level, nor the main opposition Congress party are in power in the capital, giving them little incentive to cooperate with the city government run by the Aam Aadmi (Common Man) Party (AAP).

Goel’s decision to violate the ban is the latest example of fractious politicking over pollution.

Leaders from the BJP, the Congress party and the AAP have repeatedly exchanged barbs and traded blame over a sharp deterioration in air quality.

Vehicular exhausts, along with emissions from industry, contribute more than 50% of Delhi’s air pollution on most days through the year, according to official estimates.

The city also ordered schools shut on Monday and all construction work to stop.

A government monitor on Sunday showed air quality had hit the worst level for the year, at 494 on a scale of 500. The level was well above 400 early on Monday.

According to independent online air quality index monitor AirVisual, New Delhi was the most polluted major city in the world on Monday, at twice the level of Lahore in Pakistan, which was a distant second.

Pulling up authorities for their failure to curb air pollution, India’s Supreme Court on Monday asked the state government of Delhi, its neighbouring states and the federal government to work together to help improve air quality.

Supreme Court Justice Arun Mishra asked authorities to ensure an immediate end to crop residue burning in Delhi’s surrounding states.

Every year, at this time, farmers in Punjab and Haryana states, ruled by the Congress party and the BJP respectively, start burning off the rice paddy straw and stubble in preparation for the sowing season.

The smoke from fields combines with urban pollution from vehicles and industry to make Delhi the world’s most-polluted capital.

Separately, authorities in India’s Uttar Pradesh state decided to use air purifiers to protect the Taj Mahal.

“We are also keeping a strict vigil to ensure that people do not set fire to waste or do anything which causes pollution near the Taj,” Bhuvan Yadav, of the state pollution board, told Reuters over phone from the city of Agra, home to the Taj Mahal.

Reporting by Neha Dasgupta and Mayank Bhardwaj; additiona reporting by Suchitra Mohanty and Saurabh Sharma; Editing by Robert Birsel and Alex Richardson

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-indi ... SKBN1XE0DS
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Mon Nov 04, 2019 1:55 pm

Hidden camera reveals
shocking abattoir horror


Undercover footage has revealed multiple sheep getting trapped in a conveyor belt at a Welsh slaughterhouse that is already under investigation for mistreating animals

The alarming footage taken at Farmers Fresh abattoir in Wrexham, North Wales, shows two live sheep struggling under the weight of a dead animal as they made their way along the conveyer belt to be slaughtered.

Images show several sheep getting their heads and limbs stuck in the conveyor belt, while graphic footage seen by MailOnline, which is too shocking to be shown, shows a sheep being stunned and having its throat cut after being trapped.

Pictures taken at the abattoir, which is supposedly 'under investigation', also shows sheep carcasses lying on the slaughterhouse floor, having died from unknown causes.

Animal Equality UK accused the slaughterhouse of causing the sheep unnecessary suffering, a breach of the UK's strict slaughter controls, and called on the FSA to take 'immediate action'.

The RSPCA has stated that it has 'concerns' about the footage, and has called for anyone with information to come forward 'as a matter of urgency'.

Shocking footage showed a dead sheep being placed on top of two living animals at the slaughterhouse in Wrexham, Wales, that is already under investigation

When one sheep became stuck in a conveyor belt, the harrowing footage also showed it being stunned and having its throat slit

The alleged mistreatment was filmed by animal rights group Animal Equality UK between July and August, less than a month after an Animal Aid investigation, revealed exclusively by MailOnline, caught footage of sheep being trampled and thrown onto their backs at the same abattoir and forced the FSA to take action.

It is expected to re-ignite calls for CCTV to become compulsory in Welsh slaughterhouses. It is is already required in England and Scotland.

Acting Executive Director of Animal Equality UK, Abigail Penny, said: 'These defenceless animals are treated like commodities, placed on a conveyor that delivers them to their death.

'Slaughterhouses are inherently unforgiving places and this systematic neglect – made all the worse by poorly designed equipment – causes even more distress for these terrified lambs and sheep.

Footage also showed sheep being stunned in the eyes (pictured). After viewing the footage, the RSPCA said it had 'concerns' about the slaughterhouse

Animal Equality UK, which captured the images between July and August following an Animal Aid investigation, also caught these images of sheep hanging out of a conveyor belt

'We demand justice for these vulnerable animals. The Food Standards Agency must take immediate action against Farmers Fresh Wales and their own officer who failed in his duties.

'If people want to stop supporting the suffering that takes place in slaughterhouses, it has never been easier to choose plant-based options instead of meat.'

After the RSPCA's welfare specialists viewed the footage, they said they had 'some concerns'.

'We would like to be able to look into it further,' they said.

'The welfare of animals must be the first priority. We would urge anyone with further information or concerns about this slaughterhouse to report this to us as a matter of urgency.'

In a statement, the FSA said it would begin an investigation the footage, alongside its current investigation, which is expected to take months to complete.

'The Food Standards Agency takes animal welfare at slaughterhouses very seriously,' said a spokesman.

'An investigation is already underway at the business and we are examining this new evidence closely.

'We are unable to comment further while the investigation is ongoing.'

A dead sheep was also photographed on the slaughterhouse floor by animal rights activists

This sheep is pictured shortly before it is stunned before slaughter. An Animal Aid investigation sparked the slaughterhouse regulator to start investigating this abattoir

After viewing the footage, an Animal Aid spokesman said they were 'deeply concerned' by the findings and called for 'urgent questions' to be asked about the effectiveness of the current regulator.

'We believe that urgent questions need to be asked about the current regulatory regime, and whether it is fit for purpose,' they said.

'If those tasked with enforcing the law are allowing such terrible suffering to be inflicted on vulnerable animals, then that is absolutely unforgivable, and they must be held to account.

'The chaos, brutality and incompetence uncovered by Animal Aid’s earlier investigation were bad enough.

'It is absolutely unthinkable that nightmarish scenes should have been filmed at the slaughterhouse yet again, after we had reported our investigation to the Food Standards Agency (FSA), and they had assured us that robust action was being taken.'

And in a statement the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, the UK's vet regulator, said it did not comment on individual cases, but would be able to consider the case 'in line with our normal concerns investigation process'.

It follows a poll taken by the animal rights charity, which found that 79 per cent of Welsh people backed making CCTV a legal requirement in slaughterhouses.

Just 4 per cent of respondents said they would oppose the move.

The cameras would help protect animals from additional abuse when they go to slaughter.

Sheep were also photographed in the conveyor belt as they went up to slaughter

And one animal was shown with its head sticking out of the bottom of the conveyor belt as it headed up the ramp to slaughter

Joyce Watson, an assembly minister for the National Assembly for Wales' Climate Change, Environment and Rural Affairs committee said that the country should not 'turn a blind eye to the horrific cruelty that goes on behind closed doors'.

'Until CCTV is compulsory in all our abattoirs – and Official Veterinarians given unrestricted access to the footage – we cannot ensure animals in Wales are properly handled and cared for at the end of their lives', she told MailOnline.

    'We must take action now.'

Footage from between March and June this year, captured by Animal Aid, showed sheep hiding in the corner as workers dragged them by the legs and neck onto a conveyor belt, and sat on them to stop them escaping.

Sheep were also seen being stunned repeatedly on the head and legs.

Animal Aid investigates treatment of sheep in Welsh slaughterhouse

A hidden camera at a slaughterhouse in Wales, in place between March and June this year, caught sheep being hurled onto their backs, trampled and improperly stunned moments before their death at a Welsh slaughterhouse

The harrowing footage, released exclusively by MailOnline last month, was filmed by Animal Aid activists investigating Farmers Fresh abattoir in Wrexham, Wales. (Pictured: A worker grabs a sheep by the neck before hurling it onto the conveyor belt)

Animal Aid's campaign manager Tor Bailey accused the abattoir of 'numerous failings'.

After viewing the footage, a spokesman for the FSA said they have staff at the slaughterhouse permanently to monitor animal welfare and have introduced additional welfare checks.

'We took swift action to increase our presence at Farmer Fresh in Wrexham and to introduce additional checks and ensure animal welfare was being protected.

'We take animal welfare at slaughterhouses very seriously and a criminal investigation is underway.'

The slaughterhouse was rated as 'requires improvement' in its most recent inspection, published at the beginning of August, carried out by the Food Standards Agency.

Their failure to comply with requirements for reducing animal suffering during their killing was rated as 'major'.

Farmers Fresh took over the abattoir in January this year. The company also has operations in Kenilworth, Warwickshire.

It sells slaughtered lambs to supermarkets in the UK and exports them to France.

Farmers Fresh Wales declined to comment when it was contacted by MailOnline.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/arti ... -ones.html
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Mon Nov 04, 2019 4:45 pm

Vast animal-feed crops
are destroying planet


Workers on tractors harvest soybeans in the deforested land of Campo Novo do Parecis, in the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso

Image

The ongoing global appetite for meat is having a devastating impact on the environment driven by the production of crop-based feed for animals, a new report has warned.

The vast scale of growing crops such as soy to rear chickens, pigs and other animals puts an enormous strain on natural resources leading to the wide-scale loss of land and species, according to the study from the conservation charity WWF.

Intensive and industrial animal farming also results in less nutritious food, it reveals, highlighting that six intensively reared chickens today have the same amount of omega-3 as found in just one chicken in the 1970s.

The study entitled Appetite for Destruction launches on Thursday at the 2017 Extinction and Livestock Conference in London, in conjunction with Compassion in World Farming (CIFW), and warns of the vast amount of land needed to grow the crops used for animal feed and cites some of the world’s most vulnerable areas such as the Amazon, Congo Basin and the Himalayas.

The report and conference come against a backdrop of alarming revelations of industrial farming. Last week a Guardian/ITV investigation showed chicken factory staff in the UK changing crucial food safety information.

Protein-rich soy is now produced in such huge quantities that the average European consumes approximately 61kg each year, largely indirectly by eating animal products such as chicken, pork, salmon, cheese, milk and eggs.

In 2010, the British livestock industry needed an area the size of Yorkshire to produce the soy used in feed. But if global demand for meat grows as expected, the report says, soy production would need to increase by nearly 80% by 2050.

“The world is consuming more animal protein than it needs and this is having a devastating effect on wildlife,” said Duncan Williamson, WWF food policy manager. “A staggering 60% of global biodiversity loss is down to the food we eat. We know a lot of people are aware that a meat-based diet has an impact on water and land, as well as causing greenhouse gas emissions, but few know the biggest issue of all comes from the crop-based feed the animals eat.”

With 23bn chickens, turkeys, geese, ducks and guinea fowl on the planet – more than three per person – the biggest user of crop-based feed globally is poultry. The second largest, with 30% of the world’s feed in 2009, is the pig industry.

In the UK, pork is the second favourite meat after chicken, with each person eating on average 25kg a year in 2015 – nearly the whole recommended yearly intake for all meats. UK nutritional guidelines recommend 45-55g of protein per day, but the average UK consumption is 64-88g, of which 37% is meat and meat products.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment ... yVM55iGYFk
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Re: Updates: polution; hunting; animal slaughter; climate ch

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Nov 05, 2019 9:20 pm

Google Employees Demand
Climate Change Action


More than a thousand Google employees have signed an open letter urging the company to commit to and release a company-wide climate plan' in accordance with 'the gravity and urgency of the global climate crisis and its disproportionate harm to marginalized people

Those who added their signatures to the Monday letter agreed they wanted the company to reach 'zero emissions by 2030, zero contracts to enable or accelerate the extraction of fossil fuels and zero funding for climate-denying or -delaying think tanks, lobbyists, and politicians'.

The note for Ruth Porat, Chief Financial Officer at parent company Alphabet, included a four-point list that adds Google should also commit to 'zero collaboration with entities enabling the incarceration, surveillance, displacement, or oppression of refugees or frontline communities'.

Letter calls on Google to commit to and release a climate plan, saying many of their billions of global users 'are already bearing the brunt of climate disaster'

The letter quotes similar action taken by tech rivals and references a letter written by Amazon staff. It states that Google's 'code of conduct requires respect for users'

The letter had been signed by 1,137 staff members early Tuesday afternoon.

The workers pointed to examples of employees at other technology giants that have expressed their concerns.

The note published on Medium, said: 'These demands have been set by workers across the tech industry, including Amazon and Microsoft.'

It goes on to quote an open letter from Amazon from April that states: 'Climate change is an existential threat. The 2018 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report predicts that a warming of 2° Celsius, which we're currently on track to surpass, will threaten the lives of hundreds of millions of people and put thousands of species at risk of extinction.

What 'Google Workers For Action on Climate' wants:

    Zero emissions by 2030.

    Zero contracts to enable or accelerate the extraction of fossil fuels.

    Zero funding for climate-denying or -delaying think tanks, lobbyists, and politicians.

    Zero collaboration with entities enabling the incarceration, surveillance, displacement, or oppression of refugees or frontline communities.
'We're already seeing devastating climate impacts: unprecedented flooding in India and Mozambique, dry water wells in Africa, coastal displacement in Asia, wildfires and floods in North America, and crop failure in Latin America. Vulnerable communities least responsible for the climate crisis are already paying the highest price.'

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos shared a plan on September 19 which agreed to zero emissions by 2040.

The following day hundreds of Google employees protested at Global Climate Strike ahead of the United Nations Summit, as did staff from Amazon.

In September, Google CEO Sundar Pichai said the company 'could achieve zero emissions by 2030', according to the Financial Times.

However Google has contributed to organizations that deny climate change, such as Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), the Guardian reports.

The letter authored by 'Google Workers For Action on Climate' tell Porats and Google to do what employees interpret as what's being asked of them.

'Google is a global company with billions of users across the world, many of whom are already bearing the brunt of climate disaster,' the letter adds.

'Google's code of conduct requires respect for users and for opportunities. As Google workers, we are committed to putting our users first, and Google must do the same.'

The letter references 'unprecedented flooding in India and Mozambique, dry water wells in Africa, coastal displacement in Asia, wildfires and floods in North America'. Pictured the Maria Fire moves down a hill in Santa Paula, California on Friday

In the past three years Google employees have created change from within.

Protests contributed to the termination of a Pentagon contract to build AI for drone videos in August 2017.

It was dubbed Project Maven and was viewed as a foot in the door for winning the bigger Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure Cloud (JEDI) contract, a $10 billion, 10-year deal held by Amazon, but up for renewal.

Google also pulled out of a project to build a censored search app in China, Project Dragonfly.

However, Google continues to maintain a controversial AI research lab in Beijing, which its website says is focused on 'university education, research on natural language understanding and market algorithms, user experience, and development of our globally available tools.'

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/articl ... hange.html
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