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Postcard from Thailand - a polluted paradise

Greenpeace International - س, 10/30/1416 - 06:44

The tiny island of Koh Samet is about 2 km off the coast of the Thai mainland and has the long pale beaches, forests and beautiful geography made famous by the 2000 hit film, The Beach

Right now though the fine, white sands of the island and clear, blue waters that surround it are being turned sticky and black by crude oil which spurted out of a pipeline operated by PTT Global Chemical.

The spill started Saturday morning from about 20 kilometres southeast of the Map Ta Phut seaport on the southern shore of the mainland. PTT, the state-owned administrator of PTT Global Chemical, tried to downplay the full extent of the leak by claiming that the oil slick had "effectively been dissolved".

This claim proved to be untrue after unrefined crude started blackening the immaculate beaches of Koh Samet as PTT Global Chemical admitted 50,000 litres of unrefined crude had been spilled into the waters of Phrao Bay.

Making matters worse, Thailand is not capable of handling the oil spill, Deputy Premier Plodprasop Suraswadi conceded to the Bangkok Post. Speaking via a government spokesman, he added that authorities should seek help from nearby Singapore.

For a region identified by Greenpeace Southeast Asia Thailand Programme Manager Ply Pirom as the "nation’s food basket", this news is bleak.

Bleaker still when you realise that this spill is just one of more than 200 spills that have happened in Thai waters in the past three decades, effectively putting the region's ecosystem in the crossfire of big oil companies and meagre oil spill mitigation resources.

Greenpeace East Asia has been closely monitoring the situation and have deployed a rapid response team to document the impact of the spill, particularly in the National Marine Park area that includes Koh Samet.

Greenpeace is now demanding that PTT Global Chemical be held financially liable for the cost of cleaning and restoring the natural environment and is mobilising the public through an online petition. It's time for the Thai government to review its energy policy and put an end to oil drilling and exploration in the Gulf of Thailand.

The paradox of a country known for its staggering natural beauty but still heavily reliant on fossil fuels in its energy policy is counterintuitive. Especially when the availability of affordable, clean, renewable energy is taken into consideration. 

It is up to us all to put pressure on policymakers, oil companies and their shareholders to end our reliance on fossil fuels. It may be too late to draw a line in the oil-soaked sands of Koh Samet – as we have in the ice in the Arctic – but we can rally to make this the last oil spill we see.

You can help by signing our petition.

گروه ها: Conservation Feed

South Korea tramples human rights and ignores lessons from Fukushima

Greenpeace International - س, 10/30/1416 - 06:44

Today is the International Human Rights Day and what better way to mark it than by launching a court case against injustice in South Korea.

With so many countries moving away from nuclear power in recent decades, and many more rushing to abandon it in the wake of the Fukushima nuclear disaster, South Korea remains one of the last withered feathers in the nuclear industry’s cap. Both the South Korean government and the industry are fighting tooth and nail to keep it that way by silencing criticism.

Since establishing an office in Seoul in April 2011, Greenpeace East Asia has witnessed the South Korean government’s willingness to ignore the lessons of Fukushima and has experienced first hand its efforts to silence those speaking out against its nuclear programme.

Between November 2011 and October 2012 six Greenpeace East Asia and Greenpeace International staff were denied entry to South Korea. They were flown back to where they came from and given no official or personal explanation as to why. Official inquiries and freedom of information requests have been met with a similar stony silence.

The only option left open to us was to challenge the government’s actions in blocking our staff from entering the country in court, which we did today.

Challenging the South Korean government’s unjust actions is important, as Greenpeace is not alone in facing this treatment. Other groups, including South Korea’s People's Solidarity for Participatory Democracy (PSPD), have been met with similar tactics when they began speaking out.

“Similar to Greenpeace's anti-nuclear campaign staff, at least 25 peace activists opposing the construction of the Jeju naval base were deported or denied entry since 2011,” said Gayoon Baek, a coordinator of the International Solidarity Committee at PSPD, while standing in solidarity with us at the court today.

"The South Korean government is increasingly using denial of entry as a means to crush activist criticism – a clear violation of the internationally recognised right to freedom of assembly and expression.”

As a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), South Korea has an obligation to defend the right to free speech, freedom of expression and freedom of information. Instead, it is choosing to silence those who raise their voices in opposition to its reckless nuclear programme, restricting the information its citizens have access to.

South Korea currently has 21 nuclear reactors, and is planning to build 11 more, despite the triple meltdown at Fukushima Daiichi once again proving the massive risks that this technology poses to public, environmental and economic health.

It is only right that the people of South Korea are given all the information they need to make an informed decision about their collective future. By cracking down on peaceful anti-nuclear groups, the South Korean government is instead cutting them off from the information they need to be properly informed about the risks of nuclear power.

Stopping peaceful NGOs and activists from participating in public debate in this manner is a violation of Article 19 of the ICCPR, is inconsistent with Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and is a threat to the integrity of South Korea’s democracy.

With so much invested in its nuclear plants, and with many more reactors planned, it is clear that the nuclear industry has a dangerous choke hold on South Korea’s political system.

To protect the quality of its democracy and to ensure its people have both the necessary information and a choice to move towards a nuclear-free, renewable energy future, the South Korean government must immediately cease its crackdown on those who criticise its policies. It's time for the government to allow the energy discussion debate.

Pino Lee is a nuclear campaigner with Greenpeace East Asia and is based in Seoul, South Korea.

 

گروه ها: Conservation Feed

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Sci/Tech - Google News - پ, 01/30/1397 - 22:04
This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news
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This RSS feed URL is deprecated

Health - Google News - پ, 01/30/1397 - 22:04
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گروه ها: google, Health Feed

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Sports - Google News - پ, 01/30/1397 - 22:04
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FDA committee recommends first CBD product - NBCNews.com

Health - Google News - پ, 01/30/1397 - 21:47

NBCNews.com

FDA committee recommends first CBD product
NBCNews.com
Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings. SUBSCRIBE. Federal advisers voted Thursday to recommend approval of the first cannabidiol medicine — to treat rare and severe forms of epilepsy ...
First marijuana-derived drug poised for FDA approval after winning support from advisersWashington Post
US Experts Back Marijuana-Based Drug for Childhood SeizuresU.S. News & World Report
Marijuana-derived drug for epilepsy gets FDA committee recommendationCNN
Bloomberg -Wall Street Journal -WGCU News -STAT
all 30 news articles »
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Earth's mammals have shrunk dramatically, and humans are to blame - Washington Post

Sci/Tech - Google News - پ, 01/30/1397 - 21:34

Washington Post

Earth's mammals have shrunk dramatically, and humans are to blame
Washington Post
Life on Earth used to look a lot more impressive. Just a little more than 100,000 years ago, there were sloths as long as a giraffe is tall, monstrous bears whose shoulders were six feet off the ground, and Bunyanesque beavers that weighed as much as ...
Mammals are smaller than they used to be, and it's our faultArs Technica
In a Few Centuries, Cows Could Be the Largest Land Animals LeftThe Atlantic
Unprecedented wave of large-mammal extinctions linked to ancient humansPhys.Org
Newsweek
all 9 news articles »
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Eating this one food before 8 a.m. could flatten your belly

What's Hot in Health - پ, 01/30/1397 - 20:52
It’s no secret that breakfast is the most important meal of the day—especially if you want to slim down. 
گروه ها: Health Feed, msn

This man has a six-pack, full head of hair, and yet he's way older than you think

What's Hot in Health - پ, 01/30/1397 - 20:52
<p>Here's what he chalks up to looking so young at his age</p>
گروه ها: Health Feed, msn

20 ways to improve your health in under 20 minutes

What's Hot in Health - پ, 01/30/1397 - 20:52
What if we told you that you can boost your energy, fight diseases, erase wrinkles, and lose weight in just 20 minutes? No need to pinch yourself—or pencil in a vampire facial or full-body cryotherapy session—improving your health in less than a half-hour is totally viable with just a few simple steps.
گروه ها: Health Feed, msn

The exact diet and exercises that keep Amal Clooney looking fab at 40

What's Hot in Health - پ, 01/30/1397 - 20:52
<p>The model-esque barrister is basically every woman's body and style inspiration. No, life inspiration.</p>
گروه ها: Health Feed, msn

This personality quiz will tell you the best food and fitness plan for you

What's Hot in Health - پ, 01/30/1397 - 20:52
<p>Are you a leader, socializer, supporter, or planner?</p>
گروه ها: Health Feed, msn

'Artificial mole' could warn of cancer: study

What's Hot in Health - پ, 01/30/1397 - 20:52
Swiss scientists have developed an experimental skin implant that darkens like a mole when it detects subtle changes in the body that may be an early warning sign of cancer, a study said Wednesday.
گروه ها: Health Feed, msn

More E. coli infections tied to romaine lettuce have been reported, CDC says

What's Hot in Health - پ, 01/30/1397 - 20:52
Cases are piling up in an E. coli outbreak likely tied to chopped romaine lettuce, according to an update issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).&nbsp;
گروه ها: Health Feed, msn

Curing cancer ‘not a realistic goal,’ doctors focus on managing instead of curing disease

What's Hot in Health - پ, 01/30/1397 - 20:52
"It’s been a big shift in the last 10 years with thinking about cancer in that way: instead of a cure, treat it like a chronic disease."
گروه ها: Health Feed, msn

20 warning signs your liver sends you

What's Hot in Health - پ, 01/30/1397 - 20:52
Your liver is one of the largest and most important organs in your body. So it should be no surprise that, when it's not working correctly, a ton of issues will follow. Here are 20 warning signs to keep an eye out for.
گروه ها: Health Feed, msn

'White coat hypertension' may mean a real risk

What's Hot in Health - پ, 01/30/1397 - 20:52
<p>For people whose blood pressure rises when measured at the doctor's office — a condition known as "white coat hypertension" — there may be a real reason to worry, new research shows.</p>
گروه ها: Health Feed, msn

He needed a kidney — a classmate from 50 years ago answered the call

What's Hot in Health - پ, 01/30/1397 - 20:52
Classmates from a D.C. high school were reunited more than 50 years later when one decided to donate his kidney to a fellow alumnus in need.
گروه ها: Health Feed, msn

12 rheumatoid arthritis symptoms you can't ignore

What's Hot in Health - پ, 01/30/1397 - 20:52
The sooner you identify the signs and seek help, the better you can manage the condition.
گروه ها: Health Feed, msn

Tooth loss in middle age linked to heart disease

What's Hot in Health - پ, 01/30/1397 - 20:52
<p>Losing two or more natural teeth in middle age may signal an increased risk for coronary heart disease, a study suggests.</p>
گروه ها: Health Feed, msn
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