Archive for The Guardian
Pennsylvania has passed a controversial new law that allows gas companies to carry out hydraulic fracturing, otherwise known as fracking, as close as 90m (300ft) to residential housing. The bill renders previous zoning laws obsolete in a move that the state governor says will ‘level the playing field for gas exploration.’ Fracking is a controversial method of removing gas from underground rock by blasting them with water, sand and chemicals at high pressure. The practice has come under scrutiny following reports that it has contaminated drinking water supplies in the USA. Recently, Bulgaria has become the second state, after France, to ban fracking completely. The link below takes you to a video by the Guardian that documents the township of Dallas in Pennsylvania and their battle with the gas companies.
The People and Planet Green League, an independent body that judges universities based on environmental and ethical standards, have released their 2011 results, which have been published in the Guardian newspaper. Nottingham Trent university made it to the top spot in the league. With a wealth of green innovations and schemes, from student bicycle hire at £35 a year to intelligent lift services that reduce energy use to clever roofs that act as a home to birds as well as being natural insulators and preventers of flash-flooding. Gloucester, Worcester, and Plymouth made it to the next three places followed by Bournemouth University and University of Plymouth tied in 5th. In total, 142 universities throughout the country were evaluated. In last place, with a measly score 8.5 (compared to Nottingham Trent’s score of 53.5) was Ravensbourne University in London.
Find out where your university faired in the league table on The Guardian’s website.
12th November 2010
On the 24th October, the Guardian newspaper reported that, in order to yet further reduce the nation’s deficit, the coalition government is to sell off half of Britain’s forests. If such a move went ahead then it would be the greatest change of land ownership since the second world war. In response to the article, Caroline Spelman, the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, has written a retort in the same paper explaining the details of the government’s decision. In it she explains that rather than a mass sell-off of a valuable national asset, the government is seeking to decentralise environmental management in a new and innovative way. Read her explanation here.
www.guardian.co.uk 22nd October 2010
An article written in the Guardian newspaper has drawn angry criticism from the people it was written about. On the 5th October, veteran journalist John Vidal wrote a piece on the state of the Chaco forests in Paraguay and the role local Mennonite groups and Brazilian ranchers played in the deforestation. The defining statistic in the article was that in the past 4 years, 10% (or 1 million hectares) of the forest has been destroyed to make way for intensive farming practices. Following the publication of Mr. Vidal’s piece online, angry retorts were printed in local newspapers in Paraguay claiming the article was unfair and unfounded. Read the heated debate on the link above and the original article here.