Environment

Glacial melting In Antarctica makes continent the 'ground zero of global climate change'

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AP - From the ground in this extreme northern part of Antarctica, spectacularly white and blinding ice seems to extend forever. What can't be seen is the battle raging thousands of feet (hundreds of meters) below to re-shape Earth.
 

Giant fire engulfs Argentina's Patagonia region

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AFP - A giant fire ravaged huge swaths of forest in Argentina's Patagonia region on Friday, threatening to engulf villages and a national park with thousand-year-old trees.
 

Obama moves to protect 12 million acres in Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

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Adventure Journal - President Barack Obama, who in the home stretch of his two-term presidency seems focused on carving a solid environmental legacy, will ask Congress to protect 12 million acres of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge from oil and gas drilling. Although the president can create new national monuments without the cooperation of Capitol Hill, it takes the legislative body to designate wilderness — but when the government earmarks lands for wilderness, they get that level of protection until Congress takes action or a future president changes it.
 

Scientists: Human activity has pushed Earth beyond four of nine ‘planetary boundaries

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Washington Post -  At the rate things are going, the Earth in the coming decades could cease to be a “safe operating space” for human beings. That is the conclusion of a new paper published Thursday in the journal Science by 18 researchers trying to gauge the breaking points in the natural world.
 

Study shows that 270,000 tons of plastic float In the ocean

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AP - A new study estimates nearly 270,000 tons of plastic is floating in the world's oceans. That's enough to fill more than 38,500 garbage trucks.
 

Patagonia worst-hit by climate shifts

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Buenos Aires Herald - In Argentina, climate change is being felt most directly in the Patagonia region, where the average temperature has risen one degree Celsius over the past 50 years — the highest in the country, where the average increase during the period has been half a degree.
 

Chaco: New national park created in El Impenetrable

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The Argentina Independent A new national park has been created in El Impenetrable forest in the province of Chaco. The 128,000-hectare reserve will protect native forest as well as endangered animal species such as theyaguareté, tatú carreta, and crowned solitary eagle.
 
The law creating the national park was passed by the Lower House of Congress on Wednesday night, by 225 votes to one. The initiative was sponsored by a group of NGOs led by Banco de Bosques and mineral water company Villavicencio, who worked with the province of Chaco and the national state.
 

Invasive species threaten global biodiversity

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AFP - Until a few decades ago, there were no beavers in Patagonia. That changed when 20 pairs of the tree-chewing creature were introduced with the hopes of creating a fur industry.

Today, their numbers have exploded and they pose a serious threat to the South American area's biodiversity.
 

This robotic penguin chick is doing undercover work in Antarctica (video)

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Washington Post - If you're going to build a robotic spy, you might as well make it a cutie -- especially if it needs to go incognito in crowds of adorable penguin chicks and their parents.
 

Climate change may cause ‘serious, pervasive and irreversible' damage: Report

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Reuters - Climate change may have "serious, pervasive and irreversible" impacts on human society and nature, according to a draft U.N. report due for approval this week that says governments still have time to avert the worst.
 
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