Climate Change & Environment
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How Climate Change Could Spread Diseases Like Zika

For thousands of years, humans have taken every precaution to avoid mosquitoes and the diseases they carry, from Malaria to Zika. But while techniques for fighting the insects have improved dramatically over time, scientists say long-term climate change could soon make protecting humans from mosquitoes much more difficult.

The link between climate change and mosquito-borne illness centers around how rising temperatures may expand the area in which mosquitoes can thrive. Most such illnesses can only be transmitted at temperatures between approximately 16°C (61°F) and 38°C (100°F), according to a World Health Organization report. Perhaps more significantly, the time it takes for mosquitoes to develop decreases significantly the closer temperatures are to around 30°C (86°F). The average global temperature is expected to rise by at least 2°C (3.6°F) by 2100 even if countries take dramatic action to limit their greenhouse gas emissions. In some areas, that shift will be much more dramatic.

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Rubbish Piles up in India's Pollution-Hit Capital

Rubbish piled up on New Delhi's streets on Monday as refuse collectors vowed to push ahead with a nearly week-long strike, the latest crisis to hit the world's most polluted city.

Already reeling from dangerously high levels of toxic smog, the Indian capital is now grappling with uncollected garbage that has been mounting in parts of the city since January 27.

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U.N.: Millions of Ethiopians Facing Worst Drought for Decades

Ethiopia is struggling from its worst drought for 30 years with millions in dire need of life saving aid, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warned Sunday.

At least 10.2 million people need food aid in Ethiopia, a figure the U.N. has warned could rise sharply, as "forecasts indicate that it could double within months" casting a fifth of the population into hunger.

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Australia Bushfires Raze Ancient World Heritage-Listed Forests

World Heritage-listed forests whose origins pre-date the age of the dinosaurs are being destroyed by raging Australian bushfires, with conservationists increasingly fearful they could be lost forever.

Firefighters in Tasmania -- a state south of the mainland known for its cooler temperatures -- have been battling bushfires for 18 days, with 95,000 hectares (234,750 acres) of land burnt so far, authorities said Friday.

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Acquittals over Hungary Toxic Spill Spark Outrage

Victims of Hungary's worst ever toxic spill, which killed 10 people and injured 150 in 2010, voiced outrage after the boss of the alumina plant that caused the disaster was cleared of any wrongdoing on Thursday.

Zoltan Bakonyi, the former director of the MAL alumina plant in Ajka, and 14 employees were acquitted of charges of negligence, waste management violations and damages to the environment.

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Lake Poopo: Bolivia's Second Largest Lake Dries up Due to Climate Change, Displacing Thousands of People

Bolivia’s second largest lake has disappeared, displacing hundreds if not thousands of people who depend on it for their livelihoods. 

Lake Poopo was officially declared “evaporated” last month in what scientists have said serves as a warning about climate change. 

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U.S. Climate Policies Boosted Economy $2.2 Billion in 2013

Going green by switching to renewable sources of electricity could be good business for the U.S., according to new research.

A report by researchers at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California says that cutting greenhouse gas emissions meant that the U.S. as a whole was $2.2 billion better off in 2013.

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One Dead in Mudslide at French Nuclear Waste Site

One person was killed on Tuesday in a mudslide at a laboratory of France's national nuclear waste management agency in the northeast of the country, the emergency services said.

Another person suffered minor injuries in the incident at Bure near Nancy.

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Drought is Killing Millions of Trees in California

Tens of millions of trees in California are now at risk because of sustained drought, according to new research.

And a different study in a different journal foresees a parched future for the evergreen forests not just in the Golden State but in the entire U.S. southwest.

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Denmark Broke World Record for Wind Power in 2015

Denmark produced 42% of its electricity from wind turbines last year according to official data, the highest figure yet recorded worldwide.

The new year-end figures showed a 3% rise on 2014, which was itself a record year for Danish wind energy generation.

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