PRI: Science, Tech & Environment

by Public Radio International · · · · 10 subscribers

A daily public radio broadcast program and podcast from PRX and WGBH, hosted by Marco Werman

A federal court in the Netherlands ruled last week that the oil and gas company Shell failed to respect human rights, by contributing to global warming — making legal history. _ Related: Fossil fuels cause 1 in 5 premature deaths worldwide, study says_ The ruling is part of a larger trend of using the courtroom to hold powerful governments and corporations accountable for their roles in contributing to climate change. In another case in Canberra, a group of eight Australian teenage environmentalists lost their court bid last week to force the federal government to ban a coal mine …

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_Top of The World — our morning news roundup written by editors at The World.[Subscribe here](http://theworld.org/newsletters)_. **Sri Lanka environmental disaster** Sri Lanka is facing an environmental disaster after the Singapore-registered MV X-Press Pearl cargo [ship broke out and caught fire off the coast](https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/may/31/sri-lanka-faces-disaster- burning-ship-spills-chemicals-beaches), just north of the capital, Colombo, …
At night, the floors of sheds vanish beneath carpets of scampering mice. Ceilings come alive with the sounds of scratching. One family blamed mice chewing electrical wires for their house burning down. Vast tracts of land in Australia's New South Wales state are being threatened by a mouse plague that …
In a normal year, more than 2 million tourists visit Kenya, often for its diverse wildlife. One of the country’s most popular destinations is Amboseli National Park, which spans more than 150 square miles in the southern part of the country. The park is made up of dry plains and …
People have ecosystems within their bodies consisting of tiny microbes that are unique to them, individually. Similarly, metro and subway transit systems within cities have their own ecosystems, too, that can be impacted by humans. [Passengers often exchange microbes in city subway systems.](https://biologydirect.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13062-019-0252-y) Cities have ["fingerprints” of viruses and bacteria](https://ritzherald.com/global-study-finds-each-city-has-unique- …
In the years that Ricardo Gomes César has worked in the Atlantic Forest, he’s seen the full transformation of landscapes from pastures to biodiverse rainforests. “If this was a TV show, I would show you some before and after pictures of our work,” he said. César works for the [Institute …
A new volcanic eruption from Mount Nyiragongo is feared in the city of Goma in eastern Congo sending tens of thousands of people fleeing. The volcano spewed lava near the city last week. Traffic was jammed and pedestrians streamed through the streets, desperate to escape the impending danger. A new …
Earth's shadow crept across the moon as people in New Zealand and around the world waited for a cosmic event known as a super blood moon. As the eclipse deepened, it appeared as though half the moon had vanished. The other half looked fuzzy in the center with a bright …
_Top of The World — our morning news roundup written by editors at The World.[Subscribe here](http://theworld.org/newsletters)_. ### Israel-Hamas Israel and Hamas have agreed to a ceasefire that went into effect at 2 a.m. local time, ending 11 days of fierce fighting. The office of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said …
_Top of The World — our morning news roundup written by editors at The World.[Subscribe here](http://theworld.org/newsletters)_. **Israel-Hamas** As pressure grows to negotiate an end to the conflict between Israel and Hamas, Palestinians in the Gaza Strip [again woke up to new airstrikes](https://apnews.com/article/israel-middle-east-israel-palestinian- conflict-health-coronavirus-pandemic-9b59e6d675531576e819b6b948eba99d) that killed at least six people early …
As a guide on the Galápagos Islands, Javier Cando used to spend his days taking visitors through windy trails teeming with iguanas, sea lions and blue- footed boobies. But tourism on the islands collapsed when the pandemic broke out. And [Cando ](http://www.ipsnews.net/2008/04/environment-alien-species-plague-the-land- that-time-forgot/)now wakes up at 4 in the morning …
Cyclone Tauktae, the most powerful storm to hit India's western Gujarat state in more than two decades, packed sustained winds of up to 130 miles per hour when it came ashore late Monday. The Indian navy is working to rescue crew members from a sunken barge and a second cargo …
When figuring out how to tackle a problem, our instincts are almost always to add: We make "to-do," not "to-don’t," lists after all. But just because humans have a harder time seeing subtraction as a viable solution — which can come in the form of tearing down buildings, dismantling barriers …
Over 50 years ago, scientist James Lovelock hit upon the idea that Earth is a complex, self-regulating organism. At the suggestion of a friend, novelist William Golding, he called his idea the Gaia hypothesis, after the Greek goddess who symbolizes Earth. Simply put, the Gaia hypothesis says that Earth is …
A new report finds that ultra-fine particulate matter emitted from fossil fuel combustion is responsible for 1 in 5 premature deaths worldwide, including more than 300,000 deaths a year in the United States. Fossil fuels, like diesel and coal, generate fine particles that can invade lungs and lead to a …
Extreme heat often hovers over Karachi, Pakistan’s largest city, creating insufferable conditions for its 16 million inhabitants. But each time Karachi resident Shahzad Qureshi transforms a barren patch of land into a dense, urban forest, he helps his city adapt to extreme urban heat that has become inevitable under climate …
On July 14, 1960, at the age of 26, Jane Goodall arrived in what is now Gombe National Park, Tanzania, to begin her breakthrough study of wild chimpanzees. Soon after, she realized that if chimps were to survive into the future, she had best speak out on their behalf, as …
_Top of The World — our morning news round up written by editors at The World.[Subscribe here](http://theworld.org/newsletters)_. President Donald Trump [announced an end](https://www.ft.com/content/66ee7145-aaf5-40e6-842f-32977cacb9b2) to Hong Kong's special status under US law on Tuesday. His executive order revokes the preferential trading status for Hong Kong and paves the way for possible …
The town of Verkhoyansk in Siberia hit a record-high temperature of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit on June 20, the highest temperature ever recorded within the Arctic Circle — and scientists are worried. > “I was shocked at the magnitude of it, but perhaps not necessarily > completely surprised to see these …
The Environmental Protection Agency has given biotech company Oxitec the go- ahead to test the effectiveness of genetically modified mosquitoes in parts of Florida and Texas. Oxitec has been developing genetically modified mosquitoes in hopes of reducing local populations of mosquitoes that carry dengue fever, yellow fever and the Zika …