Environment

Greenpeace activists occupy French nuclear plant

PARIS (AP) — Police have surrounded a nuclear plant in eastern France after more than 60 Greenpeace activists occupied it Tuesday to protest the nation's reliance on atomic power.

Activists hung a banner reading "Stop Risking Europe" next to one of the reactors at the Fessenheim plant near the German border. France's oldest nuclear plant, it has become a flashpoint for anti-nuclear campaigners who say it is unsafe and should have been closed long ago.ources.

Sea level rise could be worse than expected from Greenland melt: Scientists

Source: 
E&E

Scientists, publishing in the journal Nature Climate Change, warn that sea level rise from global warning could be more dramatic than expected, as earlier projections did not fully account for rapid melting of the Greenland ice sheet, E&E reports.

French anticipating weather change will break Paris smog

PARIS (AP) — Paris imposed drastic measures Monday to combat its worst air pollution in years, banning around half of the city's cars and trucks from its streets for a day in an attempt to reduce the toxic smog that's shrouded the City of Light for more than a week.

Cars with even-numbered license plates were prohibited from driving in Paris and its suburbs. Around 700 police manned 179 control points around the region, handing out tickets to offenders. Taxis and commercial vehicles weren't covered by the ban.

Police had ticketed nearly 4,000 people by midday, and 27 drivers had their cars impounded for refusing to cooperate with officers.

Earthquake strongly felt across Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A pre-dawn earthquake rolled across the Los Angeles basin on Monday, rattling nerves and shaking buildings along a 150-mile swath of Southern California but causing no major damage.

The 4.4-magnitude quake was centered 2 miles from Encino and 15 miles west-northwest of the downtown civic center, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

USGS seismologist Robert Graves called it a "typical" Southern California quake and said expectations were that damage would be slight, if it occurred at all.

Increasingly fierce battles over water as drought bites out West

Source: 
The New York Times

From California to Texas, legal and political fights over water rights are growing as the drought intensifies and development increases, The New York Times reports.

Paris takes drastic measures to fight toxic smog

PARIS (AP) — Paris is taking drastic measures to combat its worst air pollution in years, banning around half of the city's cars and trucks from its streets in an attempt to reduce the toxic smog that's shrouded the City of Light for more than a week.

Cars with even-numbered license plates are prohibited from driving in Paris and its suburbs Monday, following a government decision over the weekend. Around 700 police were patrolling the morning rush hour handing out tickets to offenders. Taxis and commercial vehicles aren't covered by the ban.

Some California cities seek water independence

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (AP) — Drops of rain fell on Josephine Miller's 1920s bungalow — a watery relief in the midst of a punishing drought. Instead of flowing into storm drains and washing out to sea, an oversized tank harvested the precious resource to keep her thirsty citrus trees and vegetables from shriveling up on dry days.

Across Santa Monica, backyard rain barrels and cisterns are becoming fashionable. Since 2010, the beach city has doled out 385 rebates to homeowners who direct rainwater back into their gardens as part of a broader effort to become water independent that also includes cleaning up contaminated groundwater and recycling water.

Scientists expect traces of ocean radiation soon

Scientists have crowdsourced a network of volunteers taking water samples at beaches along the U.S. West Coast in hopes of capturing a detailed look at low levels of radiation drifting across the ocean since the 2011 tsunami that devastated a nuclear power plant in Japan.

With the risk to public health extremely low, the effort is more about perfecting computer models that will better predict chemical and radiation spills in the future than bracing for a threat, researchers say.

Jersey shore residents hail flood insurance bill

BRICK, N.J. (AP) — Sue Suebelka, who had little fish swimming among the shelves of her new refrigerator, won't have to pay quite as much for flood insurance.

Kim Ely, who still washes dishes in a bucket and eats dinner from a microwave in her gutted home, will now be able to remain there and fix it.

And George Kasimos, who kicked off a protest movement against soaring flood insurance rate increases after Superstorm Sandy, will see his rates rise by $1,500 instead of $8,000.

Bloomberg: China could take lead in addressing climate change

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said China might become "the next pro-environmental leader in this world" and strongly defended many of his signature policies in a wide-ranging interview with Katie Couric.

Bloomberg's sit-down with the new Yahoo News global anchor, which debuted Friday, was his first major interview since leaving elected office in December. In it, the new United Nations special envoy addressed climate change, gun control, education and income inequality.

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