YOUR WEEKLY BRIEFING FROM PARLEY
The UK has seen huge protests led by students and young people in response to the lack of meaningful action by politicians when it comes to climate change. The protests are part of a movement that started in August when Greta Thunberg, a 16-year-old schoolgirl, held a solo protest outside Sweden’s parliament. Globally, up to 70,000 schoolkids each week are taking part in 270 towns and cities. Environmentalists and academics from the UK’s leading teaching unions have backed the strikes. Meanwhile, activist group Extinction Rebellion blockaded London Fashion Week over the weekend to highlight the spiraling cost of clothing on the planet. Total greenhouse gas emissions from textiles production – 1.2 billion tonnes annually – now exceed those of all international flights and maritime shipping combined.
Malaysia became one of the world's biggest plastic importers in 2017, after China banned the import of foreign plastic waste. Jenjarom, a small town near the country’s largest port, is now smothered in 17,000 tonnes of waste. Residents were unaware of the existence of several illegal recycling factories burning plastic, until they began bearing the cost on their health from inhaling toxic fumes.
The diminutive threespine stickleback is providing fascinating insights for genomics researchers. Variations in a single gene of this tiny fish alter how they interact with their environment. This study from the University of Pennsylvania represents a strategy for uncovering, and perhaps even predicting, the ecological implications of evolutionary change.
The trucks and trains that transport goods across the United States emit gases and particles that threaten human health and the environment. A new project developed a new model that predicts through 2050 the impact of different environmental policies on human mortality rates and short- and long-term climate change caused by particulates and greenhouse gases.
Industrial fishing vessels that accidentally kill tens of thousands of albatrosses each year routinely ignore regulations designed to save the birds from extinction, according to research. Using satellite data, investigators found that vessels employing longline fishing techniques showed a “low level of compliance” with measures to reduce albatross deaths.