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Wednesday November 25th 2015

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Environment News Headlines – Yahoo! News UK

Oil edges up further after big rally on increased Mideast risk

A pumpjack of Austrian oil and gas group OMV is pictured in AuersthalBy Meeyoung Cho SEOUL (Reuters) – Crude oil futures extended gains on Wednesday after prices hit two-week highs in the previous session as tension mounted in the Middle East following Turkey's downing of a Russian warplane. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures rose 4 cents to $42.91 a barrel. "In Asian hours you are seeing some profit-taking … but bullish sentiment is continuing," said Daniel Ang, an investment analyst at Phillip Futures said, referring to the increased geopolitical risk in the oil-producing Middle East.

Posted on 25 November 2015 | 4:53 am

Shell Canada fined C$825,000 for 2013 refinery odour leak

Shell's company logo is pictured at a gas station in ZurichThe Ontario government on Tuesday ordered Shell Canada, a wholly owned subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell , to pay C$825,000 (£546,727) in fines for discharging a contaminating odour from its Sarnia refinery in 2013. In a statement, the Ontario Ministry for Environment and Climate Change said Shell had pleaded guilty to one offence of permitting a discharge of an odour containing mercaptan, a foul-smelling gas. The Shell Sarnia Manufacturing Centre is located in Corunna, Ontario, and on Jan. 11, 2013, employees discovered a leak from a line containing mercaptan, which flowed into an on-site ditch that empties into the refinery's storm sewer system.

Posted on 25 November 2015 | 12:31 am

Oil hits two-week highs on Mideast tensions, U.S. gasoline rally

An employee holds a gas pump to refill a car at a petrol station in central SeoulBy Barani Krishnan NEW YORK (Reuters) – Oil prices hit two-week highs on Tuesday, rising about 3 percent, after a spike in Middle East tensions from Turkey's downing of a Russian warplane and a rally in U.S. gasoline futures. Russian President Vladimir Putin called Turkey's shooting of its fighter jet a "stab in the back" that could have "serious consequences." Middle East tensions have already been heightened by Russian air raids over Syria to punish those it blamed for the downing of a Russian passenger jet over Egypt last month. U.S. gasoline futures jumped 6 percent on an expected rise in road travel around Thursday's Thanksgiving holiday.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 10:03 pm

Car emissions campaigners turn sights on Renault

A new Renault Espace is displayed on media day at the Paris Mondial de l'AutomobileBy Andreas Cremer and Laurence Frost BERLIN/LONDON (Reuters) – Renault's flagship Espace minivan released toxic diesel emissions 25 times over legal limits in a Swiss study, despite complying with EU tests carried out at unrealistically low engine temperatures, a German environmental group said on Tuesday. The tests commissioned by the DUH group, which have not been independently verified, follows Volkswagen's admission that it used illegal "defeat devices" to cheat diesel emission regulations. In a statement, Renault said it contested the findings of the DUH lobby group.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 8:30 pm

Exclusive – Brazil’s Petrobras corruption investigators to probe Olympic contracts

The Maracana stadium is seen between Turano slum and Mangueira slum, which will be one of the stadiums in Rio de JaneiroBy Caroline Stauffer SAO PAULO (Reuters) – Brazilian police investigating corruption around state-run oil firm Petrobras also plan to probe more than $10 billion of construction contracts for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, a lead investigator said. Some of the big engineering firms caught up in the Petrobras probe "very probably" broke laws against price-fixing and bribery on contracts to build Olympic venues, said Igor Romario, a Federal Police chief and key figure in the investigation. "In every situation where there has been an investigation into contracts with these companies, this model of corruption was repeated," Romario told Reuters in a telephone interview.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 6:37 pm

Whitegate, Ireland’s only oil refinery, up for sale again

Phillips 66 has put Ireland’s Whitegate refinery up for sale, the company said on Tuesday, more than a year after taking the country’s only refinery plant off the market having failed to find a buyer. “Phillips 66 has decided to seek a buyer for its 71,000 barrel-per-day Whitegate Refinery and associated wholesale marketing business in Ireland,” Dennis Nuss, director of media and external relations, said. “We’ve seen a stronger margin in the Atlantic Basin this year and Whitegate has been performing well in this environment,” a Phillips 66 spokesman was quoted as saying by the Irish Examiner.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 4:04 pm

Shell fined by Scottish court for 2011 North Sea oil spill

The logo of Shell is pictured at the 26th World Gas Conference in ParisOil major Royal Dutch Shell was handed a 22,500 pound fine by a local Scottish court on Tuesday for a 2011 oil spill in the North Sea that was the largest in more than a decade. A subsea pipeline leak from Shell's Gannet Alpha field spilled more than 200 tonnes of oil into the central North Sea in August 2011. Aberdeen Sheriff Court imposed the fine after Shell pleaded guilty in the case.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 2:42 pm

Canada, provinces to present united front at Paris climate talks

Oil-rich Alberta, home to part of Canada's famous Rockies, has decided to adopt a tax on carbon emissionsCanada's federal government and its provinces will present a united front on combating greenhouse gas emissions at the Paris climate summit which begins next week, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 12:20 pm

Philippines takes South China Sea claim to Hague court

Subi reef, located in the disputed Spratly Islands in the South China Sea, is shown in this handout CSIS Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative satellite imageBy Thomas Escritt AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – The Philippines asked global judges on Tuesday to recognise its right to exploit waters in the South China Sea, a case that could bolster territorial claims by other countries against China in the resource-rich body of water. China, which claims economic and territorial rights in almost the entire sea, has boycotted the proceedings and rejects the court's authority in the case. Indonesia has signalled it may also go to the court to counter an increasingly-assertive China that has heightened tension in the region.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 12:08 pm

Brazil dam disaster: Toxic red mud threatens endangered wildlife in Rio Doce basin

Toxic mud from a collapsed iron mine dam in Brazil has travelled more than 500km along the Rio Doce to reach the Atlantic Ocean. A plume of red mud can be seen spreading out along the coast of the Brazilian state of Espírito Santo, threatening the region’s already endangered wildlife. The collapse of the dam caused Brazil’s worst ever environmental disaster.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 12:03 pm

Green News – Environment and climate change news

Earth news from Telegraph Earth – your source for environment and green news and environment and green issues, with information on farming, climate change, global warming, pollution, green living and recycling, and all other environment issues.

Pictures of the day: 12 October 2015

Today: A posing ostrich, spectacular sunsets and Ipanema beach

Posted on 12 October 2015 | 2:06 pm

Countryside at odds over ‘lead risk to children who eat game’

Controversial report claims shooting is placing thousands of children at risk of brain damage because of eating game killed with lead ammunition

Posted on 11 October 2015 | 7:00 am

Animal pictures of the week: 9 October 2015

All creatures great and small in our ever popular animal gallery

Posted on 10 October 2015 | 10:37 am

Pictures of the day: 9 October 2015

A rutting stag, a rocket launch and New York Comic Con

Posted on 9 October 2015 | 2:10 pm

Piggyback riders: Funny photos of lazy hitchhiking animals

In pics: Funny photos of lazy hitchhiking animals

Posted on 9 October 2015 | 9:15 am

Where is the best place to see the Northern Lights in the UK and what is the best time to see them?

Conditions in the UK in the coming weeks will increase the chances of seeing the Northern Lights

Posted on 8 October 2015 | 12:46 pm

Untreated toxic land could harm public health after funding cut

Experts have warned that toxic land will go untreated as funding for contamination clean-up dries up

Posted on 8 October 2015 | 10:58 am

Pictures of the day: 8 October 2015

A superhero window cleaner, the northern lights and a baby gorilla

Posted on 8 October 2015 | 8:10 am

Abandoned: Inside Fukushima’s nuclear disaster exclusion zone, in pictures

Photographer explores toxic towns contaminated in nuclear disaster

Posted on 7 October 2015 | 12:31 pm

Pictures of the day: 7 October 2015

A yawning snow leopard, a giant pumpkin and Dave prepares his speech

Posted on 7 October 2015 | 9:40 am

Earth & Climate News — ScienceDaily

Carbon content of temperate forests overestimated, study suggests

Digital measurements of millions of trees indicate that previous studies likely overestimate the amount of carbon stored by temperate US forests, according to a new study.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 10:02 pm

Volcanic rocks hold clues to Earth’s interior

Earth’s deep interior transport system explains volcanic island lava complexities, report scientists. Studies of rocks found on certain volcanic islands, known as ocean island basalts, have revealed that although these erupted rocks originate from Earth’s interior, they are not the same chemically.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 10:02 pm

Algae could be a new green power source

To limit climate change, experts say that we need to reach carbon neutrality by the end of this century at the latest. To achieve that goal, our dependence on fossil fuels must be reversed. But what energy source will take its place? Researchers report that they just might have the answer: algae.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 7:36 pm

Decarbonizing tourism: Would you pay US$11 for a carbon-free holiday?

The damaging effects of carbon dioxide emissions from tourism could eventually be eliminated if travelers paid just US$11 per trip, according to a new study. Global tourism is largely dependent on fossil fuel energy, and emits more carbon dioxide than than all but five countries of the world. Recent estimates conclude that tourism, including transport, accommodation, and leisure activities contributed close to 5 percent of total human-made emissions of carbon dioxide worldwide.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 7:33 pm

Big data reveals glorious animation of bottom water

A remarkably detailed animation of the movement of the densest and coldest water in the world around Antarctica has been produced using data generated on Australia’s most powerful supercomputer, Raijin.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 5:20 pm

How Earth’s Pacific plates collapsed

Scientists drilling into the ocean floor have, for the first time, found out what happens when one tectonic plate first gets pushed under another. The international expedition drilled into the Pacific ocean floor and found distinctive rocks formed when the Pacific tectonic plate changed direction and began to plunge under the Philippine Sea Plate about 50 million years ago.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 5:20 pm

Storing solar energy underground for a cloudy day

A common criticism of a total transition to wind, water and solar power is that the US electrical grid can’t affordably store enough standby electricity to keep the system stable. Now a researcher proposes an underground solution to that problem.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 4:21 pm

‘Traditional authority’ linked to rates of deforestation in Africa

New analysis reveals a strong correlation between precolonial institutions in Africa and current levels of deforestation. Researchers suggest that many of these structures still operate at a local level, controlling and exploiting natural resources under the radar of the state, and that such legacies of governance pose a major challenge for implementing conservation policies.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 1:22 pm

Electric mobility contributes decisively to climate protection

The transportation sector has the capacity to nearly halve its carbon dioxide emissions by 2050 and, hence, to contribute far more than previously thought to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions. Realizing this would require further efficiency improvement and, especially, promotion of public transport in cities, alongside with a large-scale shift to electric cars, concludes a recent study.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 1:19 pm

Taking care of old oil wells

Thousands of old offshore oil wells will have to be plugged to prevent them leaking, an expensive exercise. Researchers are now proposing a solution that may offer some relief for what is a major headache.

Posted on 24 November 2015 | 1:19 pm