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The climate costs of a plastic planet | Carroll Muffett

Every stage of the plastic lifecycle releases harmful carbon emissions into the atmosphere, contributing to global heating

Plastics are among the most ubiquitous materials in our economy, our lives, and our environment. They are also among the most pervasive and persistent pollutants on Earth.

In recent years, stark images of beaches, waterways, and wildlife filled with plastic have spurred demands for action to address plastic pollution. These calls are coupled with growing concern that plastic and its toxic additives pose serious risks to human health at every stage of the plastic lifecycle. Far less attention has been paid to the impacts of this same lifecycle on the earth’s climate. This is a dangerous oversight.

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How Peru fell in love with a sea giant worth far more alive than dead | Dan Collyns

The giant manta ray is at risk in the Pacific ocean, but the rise of ecotourism is changing attitudes among local fishermen

Fishermen heading out to sea off Peru’s northern coast keep a keen eye on the turquoise waters below them, hoping for a glimpse of the elusive giant manta ray gliding by.

Nowadays the boats are taking tourists rather than nets. The fish they once caught are now in decline, and the fish the visitors want to see now are worth far more alive than dead.

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‘Climate apartheid’: UN expert says human rights may not survive

Right to life is likely to be undermined alongside the rule of law, special rapporteur says

The world is increasingly at risk of “climate apartheid”, where the rich pay to escape heat and hunger caused by the escalating climate crisis while the rest of the world suffers, a report from a UN human rights expert has said.

Philip Alston, UN special rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, said the impacts of global heating are likely to undermine not only basic rights to life, water, food, and housing for hundreds of millions of people, but also democracy and the rule of law.

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The £1.4bn question: 1,800 miles of cycle routes or 10 minutes off a car journey?

Greater Manchester’s Bee Network has just £160m of the cash it needs, unlike a junction near Bedford

Almost exactly a year ago, Chris Boardman – the Olympic champion turned walking and cycling commissioner – unveiled a bold vision: Greater Manchester was to turn itself into a Dutch-style cycling paradise by building a 1,000-mile network of walking and biking routes called Beelines, after Manchester’s civic symbol, the worker bee.

A year on, the scheme has changed its name to the Bee Network after a rather embarrassing copyright infringement, and has expanded to cover 1,800 miles. Yet so far, work has only begun on one tiny section – a bit of towpath in Wigan known as the “muddy mile” – and the first wodge of money has already gone.

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G20 nations triple coal power subsidies despite climate crisis

Major economies pledged a decade ago to phase out all aid for fossil fuels

G20 nations have almost tripled the subsidies they give to coal-fired power plants in recent years, despite the urgent need to cut the carbon emissions driving the climate crisis.

The bloc of major economies pledged a decade ago to phase out all fossil fuel subsidies.

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