Why don’t farmers believe in climate change?


Grist

If it isn’t torrential downpours, then it’s too dry. If there’s one thing U.S. farmers can count on, it’s bad weather, and perhaps as a result, many of them don’t think humanity is to blame for the long-term shifts in weather patterns known as climate change. But even though agriculture is a major contributor to global warming, it may not matter whether farmers believe in the environmental problem.

Take, as an example of skepticism, Iowa corn farmer Dave Miller, whose day job is as an economist for the Iowa Farm Bureau. As Miller is happy to explain, it’s not that farmers in Iowa don’t think climate change is happening; it’s that they think it’s always been happening and therefore is unlikely to have much to do with whatever us humans get up to down at ground level. Or, as the National Farm Bureau’s spokesperson Mace Thornton puts it: “We’re not…

View original post 1,339 more words

Advertisements

Positive buzz: One bumblebee species makes a comeback


Grist

A once-common bumblebee species that all but disappeared over the past 20 years has been glimpsed in Washington state for the first time since the mid-90s, getting local bee fans as excited as if they’d spotted Sasquatch. Though it doesn’t quite make up for the 50,000 bumblebees that met their demise in an Oregon parking lot last month, positive bee news is rare enough these days that we’ll take any excuse to celebrate.

The Western bumblebee, or Bombus occidentalis, an accomplished pollinator of greenhouse tomatoes and cranberries, is distinguishable by its “white butt,” says Will Peterman, a self-described “bee nerd” who caught the elusive insect on camera in a park north of Seattle.

The Seattle Times reports:

The first sighting in more than a decade came from Brier resident Megan O’Donald, who spotted one of the bees in her mother’s garden last summer and reported it to the Xerces…

View original post 358 more words

World Bank joins war on coal


Grist

There’s a new ally in the fight against the dirtiest of fossil fuels.

The World Bank’s board of directors approved a strategy shift this week that will move the lending body formally away from its longstanding support of coal-fired power plants in favor of cleaner and smarter alternatives.

Following the adoption Tuesday of its Energy Sector Directions Paper [PDF], the World Bank will “provide financial support for greenfield coal power generation projects only in rare circumstances,” such as where there are “no feasible alternatives to coal.”

View original post 411 more words

USA: Return of the Western Bumblebee


The link below is to an article heralding the return of the Western Bumblebee, which holds out hope for its recovery throughout its former range.

For more visit:
http://www.newsdaily.com/article/fdce1822642c89a302507345c64aa787/return-of-long-absent-bumblebee-near-seattle-stirs-scientific-buzz