Nieuws & Politiek
Earth Island Journal

Earth Island Journal Spring 2019

Earth Island Journal is a publication in the field of news and society offering news and analysis about energy and the environment

United States
Earth Island Institute
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€ 5,95(Incl. btw)
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4 Edities

in deze editie

2 min.
eyes wide shut

Sometimes, our assumptions so blind us that we fail to see what’s hiding in plain sight. I’d assumed, for instance, that fur wasn’t fashionable any more; that decades of persistent, high-profile anti-fur campaigning by animal rights groups like PETA had sensitized most people, as it had me, to the grim suffering and killing of animals that underpins fur coats and accessories; that given the variety of high-quality faux fur and other warm outerwear options out there, consumers had lost interest in expensive, inhumane, animal-pelt clothing. Besides, I’d rarely noticed people wearing fur in recent years. Certainly not here in the California Bay Area, and not on the East Coast either, during the few winters that I spent there. But as our cover story (“Hanging On,” page 18) reveals, my assumption was more like…

2 min.
letters & emails

Letters to the Editor Earth Island Journal 2150 Allston Way #460 Berkeley, CA 94704 editor@earthisland.org Keeping the Flame Lit In a Winter 2019 letter, Aaron McGee of Madison, Wisconsin dismisses the Journal’s Autumn 2018 Women and the Environment issue as embodying “personal social beliefs” and urges you to “keep focused” on environmental issues such as biodiversity. I can’t help wondering which Earth Island Journal Mr. McGee has been reading in the past. The Journal has worked to make the connections between environment and critical social issues such as misogyny and colonialism since well before I worked as the Journal’s editor starting two decades ago. I now work on the frontlines of wildland protection in the California desert, and I can assure you that the inspiring young generation of desert protection activists I work…

2 min.
pulling the plug on coal

Germany, one of the world’s biggest coal consumers, might soon be moving away from the dirty fossil fuel. Now normally we would wholeheartedly peg this in the “good news” category, but unfortunately, this positive development comes with some caveats. On January 26, the country’s coal commission recommended the nation phase out coal by 2038. The commission has outlined a plan that calls for retiring roughly a quarter of the country’s coal fleet by the end of 2022, spending $46 billion to support mining-reliant regions over the next two decades, and preserving parts of the Hambach Forest, where a German utility’s lignite mine sparked protests and court challenges last year. “This is an historic accomplishment,” Ronald Pofalla, chairman of the 28-member coal commission, told reporters after a 21-hour negotiating session that concluded at…

1 min.
declining diversity

The big green organizations have known for some time that they have a diversity problem. But that hasn’t quite translated into addressing it. In fact, a new report by Green 2.0 — an initiative dedicated to increasing racial diversity in the environmental field — indicates that diversity at large environmental nonprofits and foundations is actually declining. According to the “diversity report card,” which was based on self-reported 2017 and 2018 data from the top 40 nonprofits and top 40 foundations in the US, environmental foundations in particular are getting low marks when it comes to diversity. The number of people of color holding senior staff positions at green foundations, for example, saw a drastic drop from 33 percent to 4 percent between 2017 and 2018. Full-time staff and board positions saw…

1 min.
smoke alarm

We all have some idea of how smoke from wildfires impacts public health, but what does it do to plant health? Is that even something we should be concerned about? It appears that we should. Apparently, particle pollution from big wildfires, similar to those that ravaged parts of California recently, affect the growth of forests and crops hundreds of kilometers from the fire impact zones. A new study that examined the effects of two byproduct pollutants of wildfires — ozone and aerosols — has found that these pollutants impact plant growth and productivity even in areas that are seemingly unaffected by the destructive natural disasters. “Globally, over the past decade, fire ozone pollution reduced plant productivity substantially more than estimated drought losses,” says Nadine Unger of the University of Exeter’s mathematics…

3 min.
fatal shift

Imagine making the long journey to Northern Europe all the way from Africa, hunting around for a place to build a home in hopes of raising young ones, finding a nice cozy spot, and settling in, only to have the irate original occupant of the place return and slash you to death and proceed to eat your brains. That’s the grim story playing out for many male pied flycatchers as our warming world shifts the onset and intensity of seasons across the world. The pied flycatcher, a small migratory bird that spends winters in Africa and returns to Europe in spring to breed, is known to build its nest on top of the previously constructed nest of a resident woodland bird in Europe — the great tit. The behavior, which has…