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 on: Today at 04:17 AM 
Started by Sree - Last post by Skywalker
Hi Sree,

Pluto conjunct a planet means that the Soul desires to metamorphose and thus evolve that planet´s archetypal meaning in the persons life. How Neptune is experienced will vary depending on evolutionary level, sociological conditioning and the persons free will. One of the highest forms of this aspect could be a desire to merge with the Source.

Any planet conjunct the South node of the Moon indicates that the Soul is reliving dynamics relative to that planet and it´s archetypal meaning. In some cases it can mean the person is in a state of fruition and brings forth some form of talent or gift connected to the archetypes of the planet conjunct the South node and also the house position and sign where they are located.

A planet conjunct the North node indicates that the archetypal dynamics of that planet have been worked on in the previous life to a point and still needs to continue to be developed and integrated into the evolutionary path in the current life.

All the best

 on: Today at 02:01 AM 
Started by dudamama - Last post by Skywalker
Hi dudumama,

Evolutionary Astrology is about understanding the Soul and its evolutionary progression so we don´t look at specific aspects as good or bad. Some aspects are more challenging than others and some lives are indeed very difficult but there is always an evolutionary purpose for anything. The beauty of EA, along with direct observation of the person, is that we can have a greater understanding of the Soul dynamics and how to support someone´s growth and evolution.

You are projecting a fear onto the future because of your preconceived ideas about Astrology. Worrying about the future doesn´t help you or anyone, specially based on a distorted understanding of Astrological aspects as good or evil.

My suggestions to you would be to study EA since you are already interested in astrology, so you can move away from the good/bad astrological mentality and to possibly do a reading or something else that could help you understand your own fears that you are projecting onto this situation.

Those fears may be very valid and I feel that you could use help in understanding them and to then adjust your perspective about your child and how to bring him up in the best way to support his well being and evolution. There are some EA astrologers on this message board that are highly qualified to help you with this. Here is a link to some that can be helpful;

All the best

 on: Aug 26, 2015, 11:05 AM 
Started by Sree - Last post by Sree
Hi All,

Is there anything specific with evolution when Neptune conjunct 1. Pluto 2. nodal axis ; especially when taking into account Neptune as the Source. I have read in Pluto 1 book about the specific evolutionary and karmic factors relating with Pluto conjunct nodal axis .Is there any specific factor exist if Neptune conjunct Nodal axis.

Thank you

 on: Aug 26, 2015, 10:30 AM 
Started by dudamama - Last post by dudamama
Thanks for your help Skywalker Smiley

I have an approach to astrology more in the view of traditional astrology (jyotish or vedic in the west version). That means analyses of the planets, aspects and houses, calling them "evils" or "goods", and all that...

I like the psychological astrology but just need to know exactly what to do. I mean I really think the square Pluto Uranus being Uranus lord of his ascedent, could mean a danger for his life. Danger coming from house XI where is pluto. Just because it is the lord of the asc and because orb is zero.

I'm very worried of that square, and also that his Moon is there also, and that both uranus and moon are in house 1 (again, his life, health, etc).

I understand everything for all the aries side... avoid violence, helping him with assertiveness, sport, and all that. I am more worried for all the rest than for his very aries and mars side, even that all that mars can mean also accidents, etc. But I think Pluto influence can be worst.

 on: Aug 26, 2015, 10:24 AM 
Started by dudamama - Last post by dudamama
Gracias por responder Gonzalo Smiley

Donde ves que esas caracteristicas a las que aludes se hayan dado "en vidas anteriores" exactamente?

Desde que nacio he intentado darle lo mejor, hacemos colecho desde el primer dia, lactancia materna (aunque no exclusiva), porteo, le lleno de besos, contacto fisico, no trabajo para cuidarle al maximo con amor, le he llevado con mi familia para que reciba el amor y besos de todos. Intento que mi bebe sea feliz y tenga un desarrollo armonico. Tambien sigo metodologias como Pikler que espero tengan consecuencias muy positivas en su desarrollo neurologico y psicomotriz. Intento transmitirle vibraciones positivas, cantarle mucho, jugar mucho con el. Y por si fuera poco soy raw vegan asi que me alimento de la manera mas natural y sana posible, mi bebe p ej no ha tenido jamas un colico ni problema alguno de salud. Llevamos una vida super natural alejados de quimicos, etc.

Pero eso no quita que como astrologa aficionada necesite comprender bien su carta y si veo aspectos de tension que pueden ser traumaticos para el o peor aun poner en peligro su vida (pluton cuadra al regente de su asc, y es partil, con luna implicada) haga lo posible por informarme plenamente de que significa y como enfocarlo.

Si he estudiado cartas durante años para ayudar a otra gente, y lo he hecho con la mayor profundidad posible, como no voy a hacerlo con la carta de mi hijo...

Necesito opiniones de otros astrologos para comparar y enriquecer las mias. No he seguido la astrologia psicologica, la que respeto mucho, sino la tradicional (la que llama a los planetas "buenos" y "malos" jeje simplificando mucho, y la que reconoce que hay cosas negativas en la vida). Por eso busco opiniones de todos los tipos pero utilizo el lenguaje de la tradicional.

Por ejemplo si aqui vemos necesidad de sanacion, nuevos ciclos evolutivos, etc yo necesito saber exactamente que hacer para ayudarle, cosas concretas: p ej clases de yoga, de respiracion para ayudar a ese pluton, o practicar deporte para evacuar la energia de tanto aries. O evitar grupos y asociaciones. O enfocarlos de otra manera.

Si no tengo cosas concretas a las que asirme, no podre hacer nada por ayudarle.

 on: Aug 26, 2015, 05:54 AM 
Started by Steve - Last post by Rad
Top campaigners call for mass climate action ahead of Paris conference

Noam Chomsky, Desmond Tutu, Naomi Klein and Vivienne Westwood among group calling for mass mobilisation on the scale of slavery abolition and anti-apartheid movements

Emma Howard
Wednesday 26 August 2015 09.00 BST

Desmond Tutu, Vivienne Westwood, Naomi Klein and Noam Chomsky are among a group of prolific figures who will issue a mass call to action on Thursday ahead of the UN’s crunch climate change conference in Paris in December.

They call for mass mobilisation on the scale of the slavery abolition and anti-apartheid movements to trigger “a great historical shift”.

Their statement, published in the book Stop Climate Crimes, reads: “We are at a crossroads. We do not want to be compelled to survive in a world that has been made barely liveable for us ... slavery and apartheid did not end because states decided to abolish them. Mass mobilisations left political leaders no other choice.”

Bill McKibben, founder of environmental movement, which has launched the project with the anti-globalisation organisation Attac France, described the move as a “good first step” towards Paris.

“It’s important for everyone to know that the players at Paris aren’t just government officials and their industry sidekicks. Civil society is going to have its say, and noisily if need be. This is a good first step,” he said.

There are now less than 100 days until the UN’s Conference of the Parties (COP21) in Paris, where leaders from more than 190 countries will gather to discuss a potential new agreement on climate change. Last week the EU’s climate commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete warned that negotiations ahead of the conference must accelerate if any agreement is to be meaningful.

Artists, journalists, scientists and academics are among the 100 signatories to the statement alongside activists Vandana Shiva, Nnimmo Bassey and Yeb Sano, the Filipino diplomat who lead a fast of hundreds at the 2013 UN climate change summit in Poland after typhoon Haiyan devastated his country.

They target corporations and international trade, calling for an end to government subsidies for fossil fuels and a freeze on extraction.

“Decades of liberalisation of trade and investments have undermined the capacity of states to confront the climate crisis. At every stage powerful forces – fossil fuel corporations, agro-business companies, financial institutions, dogmatic economists, sceptics and deniers, and governments in the thrall of these interests – stand in the way or promote false solutions. Ninety companies are responsible for two-thirds of recorded greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. Genuine responses to climate change threatens their power and wealth, threatens free market ideology, and threatens the structures and subsidies that support and underwrite them,” they state.

The book is a collection of essays, many published for the first time. In the foreword, Desmond Tutu, the former archbishop of Cape Town who rose to fame for his stance against apartheid, writes: “Reducing our carbon footprint is not just a scientific necessity; it has also emerged as the human rights challenge of our time ... history proves that when human beings walk together in pursuit of a righteous cause, nothing can resist.”

In an essay on how climate change is impacting Africa, the Nigerian environmental activist Nnimmo Bassey writes: “Temperature rises pose universal problems to the whole world, but more so for Africa. This is so because Africa has 50% higher temperatures than the global average ... burning Africa is what is at stake.”

Elsewhere, climatologist Valérie Masson-Delmotte and member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Jean Jouzel write on the current state of the science, while Pablo Solòn, former Bolivian ambassador to the UN presents a paper diagnosing the failure of the conferences.

 on: Aug 26, 2015, 05:53 AM 
Started by Steve - Last post by Rad
Bushfires, heatwaves and early deaths: the climate is changing before our eyes

In an exclusive extract from his new book, Atmosphere of Hope, Tim Flannery argues that recent events in Australia and around the world show how global warming is much more than a debate about scientific projections

Tim Flannery
Tuesday 25 August 2015 21.22 BST

When I wrote The Weather Makers, I laid out the state of climate science as it was understood in 2005. The book received much acclaim, but it was also criticised by climate-change sceptics as extremist and alarmist.

Since the book was published, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has completed two major summaries, in the form of its fourth and fifth assessment reports, and thousands of scientific publications have added to our understanding of how Earth’s climate system responds to carbon pollution.

As a result, many details of climate science have been clarified. Not only are the scientific projections of major trends more certain than ever, but today many of us also have firsthand experience of living in a strongly shifted climate. With climate change an experienced reality, and the science verified, the room for climate change denialism keeps shrinking.

    With climate change an experienced reality the room for climate change denialism keeps shrinking

Despite their vast increase in computational power, the models remain consistent in telling us that our Earth is warming, and will continue to warm in proportion to the volume of fossil fuel we burn. What has changed is the detail they reveal about the things that will unfold.

While no climate model can predict the future – simply because the future is impossible to predict – the increasing computational power of the models means that they are becoming ever more useful at explaining how climatic changes are being influenced by humanity. Studies of past climates are also becoming ever more informative. One that examines over 1,000 years of temperature records has shown that climate trends have sometimes differed markedly in the northern and southern hemispheres.

One example of hemispheric difference, which the sceptics used to cast doubt on the fact that CO2 causes warming, concerns the medieval warm period. The new study demonstrates unequivocally that this warm period was restricted to the northern hemisphere.

But such is the unprecedented volume of greenhouse gases that humans have released into the atmosphere that the climate system is being overwhelmed, and today warming is occurring in both hemispheres. The contemporary world is changing fast; few changes have been as profound or disturbing as the increases in extreme weather experienced right across the planet. For that dwindling band who continue to deny anthropogenic climate change, this is the new battleground – albeit one which is becoming ever more difficult for them to defend.

When, in late 2013, Australian prime minister Tony Abbott and his environment minister Greg Hunt argued that there is no link between the warming trend and extreme bushfires, they were arguing not only against science, but also contrary to common sense.

The link between extreme weather and climate change is a critical area for public understanding, because it’s the devastating extremes, rather than a shift in averages, that have the greatest impact. To deny the link also permits people to believe that climate change is something only for future generations to worry about. It is not.

Our climate has already changed, and over the last decade we have begun to witness more frequently the consequences of our profligate burning of coal, oil and gas. Very recent advances have allowed scientists to quantify the human impact on individual extreme weather events. Extremes in the weather are therefore a good place to begin looking at what has changed in climate science over the past decade.
Poland’s Jerry Janowicz is sprayed with cool water at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia in 2014.

    The Rod Laver Arena had not been built to cope with the threat, and lives and money were put at risk

The Australian Open Tennis Championships are Melbourne’s moment in the sun, and during the fortnight of the competition there’s hardly another topic of conversation in the city. When, during the 2014 Open, a heatwave of unprecedented ferocity struck Melbourne, bringing a record-breaking four days in a row of temperatures over 41°C, as well as the city’s hottest-ever 24-hour period, the stadium built to host the event turned into a furnace.

Despite the long and loud warnings of the climate scientists that extreme heatwaves were all but inevitable, Rod Laver Arena had not been built to cope with the threat, and lives and money were put at risk. With millions of dollars at stake, the tournament organisers were reluctant to call an end to play. For day after scorching day the players slogged it out in 40°C+ temperatures on the courts. The fans stuck around too, though more than 1,000 had to be treated for heat stress. Finally, the health risks to both players and spectators became too much, and the multi-million dollar tournament was suspended.

In late 2014 Dr Thomas Knutson of the US Geophysical Fluids Dynamics Laboratory at Princeton University, New Jersey, and colleagues published an analysis demonstrating that it is virtually impossible that the extreme heat experienced over Australia in 2013 could have occurred without the influence of human-emitted greenhouse gases. The analysis used a large series of computer models, some of which exclude human influence, while others include it.

The Australian heat of 2013 was so extreme than in the 12,000 simulations generated by the models that included only natural factors, in all but one simulation it lay outside the range of probabilities.

Moreover, human influence tripled the odds that heatwaves that year would occur as frequently as they did, and doubled the odds that they would be as intense as they were. Our ability to link some kinds of extreme weather to climate change in this way is very new, and is likely to revolutionise our understanding of how we are influencing Earth’s climate system.

The average temperature of Earth’s lower atmosphere has risen by just under 1°C during the past 200 years. How, you might ask, can such a small average increase have a large effect on extreme weather? There are several aspects that must be considered. One is that, because around 90% of the extra heat captured by greenhouse gases is transferred to the oceans, the oceans are warming dramatically. This alters evaporation, which influences the intensity of rainfall as well as the intensity of cyclones, and indeed the water cycle as a whole. But a second, more important, answer lies in the simple observation that if you plot weather for any location it looks like a bell curve.

We will still experience some cold days in our warmer climate. But we will get many more hot days, as well as a number of record-breaking hot days.

    Humanity’s first intimation of just how great a threat to health heatwaves could become arrived in the summer of 2003

During the summer of 2013, more than 3,000 weather records were broken in the US, while 123 such records were broken in Australia (which has far fewer weather stations). In 2014 a further 156 records were broken in Australia. We’re seeing the climate change before our eyes.

A well-documented heatwave experienced in Melbourne in January 2009 shows in detail how heat affects health. After four days of high night-time as well as daytime temperatures, many people’s bodies had become overstressed and unable to shed the excess heat. Mortality records reveal that, on average, around 90 people die annually in Melbourne between 26 January and 1 February.

But during the heatwave of 2009, 374 “excess deaths” were recorded, the great majority occurring after four days of the extreme heat. Bushfires and hurricanes might gain the headlines, but it’s easy to understand why doctors have come to dread what they call “the silent killer”.

Heatwaves have, of course, always occurred. The dustbowl-era American heatwave of 1936 was the hottest on record until 2012. The great Chicago heatwave of 1995, which killed about 600 people, occurred as greenhouse gas concentrations were beginning to climb, and so may have been influenced by climate change. But it was only with the arrival of the century that our shifting climate began to influence heatwaves strongly.

Humanity’s first intimation of just how great a threat to health heatwaves could become arrived in the summer of 2003. Europe’s summer that year was the hottest since records began in 1540. The most severe conditions were felt in France, and by August – the traditional time for summer holidays – parts of the country were sweltering in record heat. With their families at the seaside, many elderly people had little support for coping with the extreme conditions, a situation made worse by the lack of preparedness by authorities.

Because heatwaves had not been considered a major threat, many aged-care facilities lacked air conditioning. Remarkably, though, the residents of nursing homes did better than the more capable elderly living alone at home. With nobody to help them, it was the “fit elderly” who experienced the worst mortality rate, succumbing to overheating, dehydration and heart and lung failure.

In France, nearly 15,000 heat-related deaths resulted in a severe overload of mortuary facilities, and a refrigerated warehouse outside Paris was used as temporary storage. Across Europe, more than 70,000 people died of the heat. At current rates of warming, by mid-century the conditions seen in the 2003 European heatwave are set to become the annual summer average.

In Australia, heatwaves are hotter, last longer and come earlier than ever before. The number of hot days (above 35°C) across the country per year has doubled in the last 50 years, and the annual number of heatwaves has doubled in Perth. In Adelaide, heatwaves last an average of two days longer than they did 50 years ago, while in Melbourne the heatwave season is starting 17 days earlier. In 2014, Adelaide experienced 13 days over 40°C (the average is currently two), a number expected for the average summer by 2030.

    The number of hot days in Australia per year has doubled in the last 50 years

In the last few years, record-breaking heatwaves have been felt from Shanghai to Texas. In the US in 2011–2012, the number of intensive heatwaves was almost three times the long-term average, with the 2011 Texas heatwave and the 2012 heatwave in the Midwest both breaking temperature records.

Akin in their extremity to the Russian heatwave of 2010, they give some intimation of the conditions scientists predict are likely to be felt towards the end of this century in the US if we don’t rein in emissions.

As heatwaves become hotter, longer and more frequent, there’s an inevitable impact on bushfires. While the relationship is not as simple as that between rising average temperatures and heatwaves, it is clear enough. Three things are necessary for a bushfire to rage – enough fuel, a source of ignition, and the right weather. Sufficient fuel exists much of the time at many locations, and sources of ignition, from dropped cigarette butts to lightning strikes, are ever present.

So, as common sense suggests, the right weather conditions are the key factor in determining how severe a bushfire will become. Few places are as bushfire prone as southeastern Australia, and the most severe and damaging fire in the nation’s history provides a clear picture of how climate change is influencing fire risk.

The people of Victoria will not soon forget the conditions they awoke to on 7 February 2009. For a decade, drought had ravaged Australia, and almost no rain had fallen in Victoria in the preceding two months. A heatwave had killed hundreds in the previous week, and temperatures were predicted to peak at 47°C that afternoon. Add to that a scorching southern-hemisphere northerly wind blowing at 100 kilometres per hour, and it was clear to everyone that this would be a day of dread.

Despite all the warnings and preparations, the thousand fires that broke out that day across the state would take 173 lives, almost half of them children. Under the extreme conditions that day, fire began to behave in ways never seen before. The speed of its spread and the intensity of its impact took almost everyone by surprise.

The Black Saturday fires, as they became known, were Australia’s most deadly bushfires, and among the 10 worst ever recorded worldwide. In their wake, official advice about what to do when bushfires threaten has been drastically rewritten. Before Black Saturday, official advice was often to stay and defend your property. Afterwards, officials now warn residents to evacuate as soon as the announcement is made, which is often long before a fire reaches an area.

It turns out that at almost every step along the way, climate change had some influence on the severity of the Black Saturday bushfires. In Victoria, lightning strike typically accounts for about 25 per cent of all bushfire ignitions but, because bushfires started by lightning often burn in rugged areas and are difficult to put out, such fires account for around half of all land lost to bushfires in the state. And with every degree Celsius of warming experienced, lightning activity increases 5–6%.

The amount of fuel available to a fire can be influenced by climate cycles, which themselves are affected by climate change. Extreme rainfall can promote plant growth, and a long dry spell can then cure it and make it ready for burning. But by far the greatest influence of a changing climate on bushfires are short-term weather events, such as heatwaves. As one climate scientist put it, “climate change is increasing the frequency and severity of very hot days and driving up the likelihood of very high fire danger”.

    At almost every step along the way, climate change had some influence on the severity of the Black Saturday bushfires

In Australia, while the projections regarding future bushfire activity are not detailed, most analyses indicate an increase in the fire danger index as temperatures increase. Another issue that is likely to have a large impact is that, as the fire season lengthens, the opportunities to control fires through hazard-reduction burning are decreasing. This leaves communities under threat of high fuel loads in an extended fire season.

Fire crews are already finding the longer fire season a challenge. A few decades back they could work together and stage their efforts to meet the fire challenge as it unfolded sequentially across the continent from north to south. Now, they scramble to meet extreme conditions that may erupt in a number of states simultaneously.

All of this puts the public at heightened risk of yet another silent killer. Each year, more than 300,000 people die worldwide from inhaling smoke from forest fires. As the fire risk grows, the threat to life will worsen. In the western US, for example, organic carbon aerosol (a component of smoke) concentrations are expected to increase by 40 per cent by 2050. Smoke from forest fires can threaten the health of people far from the fire front. During July 2002, forest fires in Quebec resulted in an up-to 30-fold increase in airborne fine particle concentrations in Baltimore, a city nearly 1600 kilometres downwind. These fine particles are extremely harmful to human health and affect both indoor and outdoor air quality.

Human health can also be directly impacted by the burning of fossil fuels. In northern China, air pollution from the burning of fossil fuels, principally coal, is causing people to die on average 5.5 years sooner than they otherwise might. It’s not just the particles produced by burning coal that are deadly.

As Earth warms, more ozone is created at ground level, and ozone, when combined with fumes from burning fossil fuels or from wildfires, creates photochemical smog. Almost anyone living in a city will be familiar with the brown haze that results, and those who are young, asthmatic, old or suffering from lung or heart disease will know firsthand of its health impacts. As Earth warms, the problem is bound to increase, and the health effects will be compounded by other factors, including allergies.

The increase in heavy downpours resulting from climate change is also affecting health, through promoting an increase in the growth of mould. This compounds lung diseases, allergies and asthma. Heavy rains can also overwhelm drainage systems, causing exposure to sewerage and toxic chemicals that add to other climate related health issues.

    As Earth warms, health problems are bound to increase, and the health effects will be compounded by other factors

Just whose health is most at risk from such impacts has been assessed in a recent Australian report. Those living in remote areas, including Indigenous communities, low-income earners, the elderly, children, those who work outdoors, those with existing medical conditions, and tourists (who do not appreciate how extreme local conditions can become) are all at elevated risk.

Perhaps the most surprising health impact of climate change was revealed by a study published in Nature. It documented how increasing atmospheric CO2 was degrading the nutritional value of crops, especially in Asia. Zinc, iron and protein levels are all falling in wheat and rice, and at least two billion people depend on rice for their iron and zinc.

Finally, to all such impacts must be added the mental illnesses caused by stress. Losing your home to a bushfire supercharged by a warming climate is traumatic, as is being flooded out, or losing your crop. Health workers are noting an uptick in people whose mental health is being affected in many ways due to our changing climate.

Looking beyond 2050, it becomes more difficult to assess risks to human health. But one thing is clear. The impacts of increasing temperatures upon human health are not linear. In a world in which temperatures are 4°C warmer than the pre-industrial base, we are likely to see health impacts many times more severe than those which will prevail in a world 2ºC warmer.

Atmosphere of Hope: Searching For Solutions to the Climate Crisis by Tim Flannery is published by Text Publishing, $29.99

 on: Aug 26, 2015, 05:49 AM 
Started by Steve - Last post by Rad
US environmental agency advising Australia on impact of fracking on water

The US’s Environmental Protection Agency has given Australia’s Department of the Environment details of recent fracking study and is peer reviewing papers

Oliver Milman
Wednesday 26 August 2015 04.07 BST

The Australian government has obtained information from US environmental regulators on the impact of fracking upon water supplies to help inform a new set of guidelines it is preparing on the controversial activity.

The US’s Environmental Protection Agency has supplied the Australian Department of the Environment with the details of a recent study on fracking. The EPA has also helped the department peer review a number of its own documents.

The EPA report is the result of a request from Congress to analyse how fracking for oil and gas is affecting water supplies in the US. Fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, is a process where a combination of water, chemicals and sand is injected deep underground in order to release oil or gas from rocky areas.

Fracking is banned in Victoria and has faced opposition from environmental groups, some farmers and radio personality Alan Jones in New South Wales and Queensland.

However, the EPA report said it could find no evidence of “widespread, systemic impacts on drinking water resources in the United States” from fracking, which is deployed across vast swathes of the country.

But the report did find fracking had the potential to pollute water supplies and cited the “paucity” of long-term studies on the topic for continuing uncertainty.

Mark Kasman, a senior official at the EPA, said: “The Australian government was very interested in some of our fracking issues. They are also interested in some of the regional planning for water use and water distribution, how it’s decided what water is going to the farmers and what is going to the cities.”

An Australian department of environment spokeswoman said the government is “aware” of the report and is writing new guidelines on fracking, due to be completed next year.

“The department has commissioned a guidance manual to help industry and government regulators evaluate potential risks to humans and the environment from chemicals used in coal seam gas extraction and develop appropriate risk management measures,” she said.

Kasman said the EPA is in the early stages of collaborating with Australia over climate change, with the US watchdog set to share its experiences in regulating emissions from cars and ports.

The EPA is able to set and enforce emissions standards for on-road and off-road vehicles in the US, as part of a push to improve air quality and car efficiency.
Kimberley traditional owners reject fracking as part of oil production deal
Read more

Australia, which has no such regime in place, saw its greenhouse gas emissions from transport increase by 50% between 1990 and 2012. Transport currently accounts for around 16% of Australia’s total emissions and is forecast to rise further without government intervention.

Kasman said the interaction between Australia and the EPA has been two-way, citing the example of water use in drought.

“We know that in in Melbourne as they are building new city streets, grey water is collected and used for other purposes,” he said. “We don’t do that here yet and I have a feeling we may be forced to do that in the future if trends keep going the way they are.”

 on: Aug 26, 2015, 05:47 AM 
Started by Rad - Last post by Rad
Scotty the orphaned baby wallaby enjoys lunch on Kangaroo Island – video

Aug 26 2015

Scotty, the baby wallaby, has lunch: 11ml of a specially formulated mix. The tammar wallaby was rescued on Kangaroo Island, South Australia, after his mother was killed on the road. Those looking after Scotty created a Facebook page to chart his progress and to source expert advice on raising an orphaned macropod, the marsupial family to which wallabies and kangaroos belong

Click to watch:
<iframe src="" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

 on: Aug 26, 2015, 05:45 AM 
Started by Rad - Last post by Rad
Heed the call of the wild: don't cull the wolf

Joseph Mayton

There are better ways to control North America's wolf populations than removing wildlife protections and permitting hunting

Aug 26 201512.30 BST

They encroach on natural habitats, kill wildlife and destroy native landscapes.

While this is, in many ways, the modus operendi of human populations, it is the excuse now being given by the US Fish and Wildlife Services (FWS) in its call on the federal government to remove the gray wolf from endangered species lists. All for the purpose of using human "ingenuity" (read: guns) to help reduce the population to a more "manageable" level.

Activists are beginning to take to the social media networks in calling for the government to not slaughter wolves. One petition, began last week, has already garnered several thousand signatures en route to its 10,000 goal.

With thousands of wolves across the country struggling to survive after decades of reintroduction since humans slaughtered nearly the entire population, it seems odd that calls have grown stronger to remove them from the Endangered Species Act (ESA). According to the FWS, in the Great Lakes region, there are roughly 4,000 wolves; in the Northern Rocky Mountains around 1,700; Washington State has nine total; the southwest about 60 wolves. In Alaska, where wolves are not protected by the ESA, there live about 10,000.

So, why have the calls for "culling" wolves increased so dramatically over the past five years, in a plan to reduce the populations which the FWS terms "control"?

The modern wolf story largely begins in 1995, in Idaho (my home state), when the state reintroduced a number of gray wolves into the state as part of the "experimental, non-essential" clause of the ESA. From there, the animals developed and grew in numbers across the state as wildlife biologists helped support the small ecosystems that were developed for the animals' use. And in the United States Pacific northwest, the Nez Perce Native American tribe also started their own project, which enabled a pack of wolves to live and create familial ties in a large fenced area.

Not everyone was pleased that hills covered in snow and jagged mountains – the difficult terrain of Idaho's mountains – are now home to wolves: some government officials and ordinary citizens claim the species has now overpopulated the wilderness areas and is a threat to "human activity".

As one family friend, a hunter, told me recently, the wolves are "killing livestock, attacking people in the natural parks and without action could overrun our landscape". Although he is right that wolves do attack livestock (and wild prey), there is little evidence that people are being attacked. Wolves rarely are aggressive toward humans unless threatened.

The problem is rather with the continued development on what had, historically, been remote areas; there, wolves are simply attempting to survive. With calls for removing wolves from the protection of the ESA, however, it could soon be open season for hunters – in what officials argue are "conservation" efforts to ensure the wolves' survival.

I spoke with an Idaho biologist who has worked with both the FWS and the wolf reintroduction program. He argues that human populations continue to "overuse" hunting in the name of sport and this has reduced deer and elk populations, not just in Idaho, but in the Great Lakes and Alaska. The result?

    Wolves have been forced to look elsewhere for food and sustenance. This results in cattle being attacked because the regular food chain has been disrupted. Hunting wolves won't stop this problem unless all the wolves are killed.

He also pointed out that during such culls – which we have seen in Idaho and other areas – it is the adult wolves that are killed, often leaving cubs unprotected and unable to fend for themselves. "It is sad that this sort of thing continues," he added.

Activists have called for a blanket ban on wolf-killing, but there is a need to work with the FWS and those who feel threatened by wolves. We must understand that the issue of wolves is a nuanced controversy in which those directly affected by the encroaching wolf populations must be heard. There needs to be compromise that does not threaten the whole wolf population and finds sustainable solutions in the specific environments where the reintroduction process has occurred.

At the same time, we can't afford to reverse the good work of reintroduction programs and go back to the days when wolves were seen as a deadly menace to humans and their livestock – and had to be exterminated because of that perception.

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