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News stories from 2010

Last updated: 8 January 2011.

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December 2010

Fri, 31 Dec 2010: Getting a new angle on rivers: This very interesting little piece from the Des Moines Register explains how environmental activist Joe Galloway suddenly saw river-centred recreation from an entirely different angle when he made his first trip down the Raccoon River by canoe.

Thu, 30 Dec 2010: England's special wildlife sites show dramatic improvement: From Defra: "Over 95 per cent of England's finest wildlife and geological sites, covering more than one million hectares of countryside, are now in favourable or recovering condition, Environment Secretary Caroline Spelman announced today. This is a major improvement since 2003, when only 57 per cent of these Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) were in the same condition. It follows seven years of hard work by Defra, in conjunction with Natural England, the Environment Agency, the Forestry Commission and partners from the public, private and voluntary sectors." But how about setting that in context of apocalyptic predictions for global biodiversity?

Thu, 30 Dec 2010: SAS looks back on a great 20th year: 2010 saw Surfers Against Sewage (SAS), the clean water campaign group, turn 20 and it was one of their best years ever. Their campaigns were splashed over the front pages of The Sunday Times, featured in The Observer and starred in the UK's most watched current affairs TV programme to mention but a few. This momentum translated into significant campaign victories for surfers and waveriders all over the UK.

Mon, 27 Dec 2010: Halcyon river diaries Christmas special!: If you enjoyed Charlie and Philippa's series earlier this year, you'll love this Christmas special as the young family film the river by their house in Autumn and Winter.

Thu, 23 Dec 2010: Small government concession on flood defence: Environment secretary Caroline Spelman seems to be listening (just) to the deafening chorus of protest against absurd government cuts to the national flood defence budget. In this piece, the Guardian's Damian Carrington continues his commendable charge against the cuts, insisting he is "angry at Defra's appalling spinning on what can be a life-and-death issue".

Thu, 23 Dec 2010: Environment Agency guilty of 'comical bureaucratic entanglement': Congratulations to our old friend Andrew Wood for doggedly revealing how idiotically bureaucratic the Agency can be at times, as explained here by George Monbiot's blog.

Thu, 23 Dec 2010: BBC guide to rivers and streams: Just found this handy page of river-related educational material from the BBC—one of those nuggets tucked away in a dark corner of their website. Very useful for teachers and students.

Wed, 22 Dec 2010: WWT centres in the snow: Some great snowy pictures of wild winter wetland birds here from the WWT centres in Slimbridge and London!

Wed, 22 Dec 2010: MPs call for urgent action on flood defences: A new report on 'Future flood and water management legislation' by the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee makes it clear that cuts to the government's flood defence budget are ill-timed. Chair Anne McIntosh MP, said: "Urgent action is needed to ensure we all continue to have access to clean, reliable and affordable water supplies and that our communities are adequately and effectively protected from flooding. Legislation required to implement the Government's full suite of flood and water management policies must be in place as soon as possible."

Wed, 22 Dec 2010: Fight continues against Hinkley C nuclear station: If you think environmentalists have started supporting nuclear power, watch the short video of Jonathon Porritt declaring "I do not believe a single word that issues from the mouth of a single spokesperson for the nuclear industry." The Hinkley campaign still needs your support. Read more about the arguments against a return to nuclear power on our No New Nukes minisite.

Wed, 22 Dec 2010: Snow stop play at chilly Cheltenham Lido!: For the first time ever, bad weather has forced the cancellation of the annual festive swim at Cheltenham Lido, typically attended by 60-80 people.

Tue, 21 Dec 2010: Environment Agency takes steps to boost North Sea fish stocks: The bold Living North Sea project is trying to reverse the decline by promoting free fish migration. Fish, such as sea trout and eels, which migrate from the sea to fresh water to spawn, have fallen in numbers and the project aims to halt this decline. It involves 15 different partners from seven different countries including the Association of Rivers Trusts, the Norwegian Institute for Nature Research and the Dutch Angling Association.

Tue, 21 Dec 2010: Improvements to the Kentish Stour!: An exciting Water for Wildlife partnership project between the Environment Agency, Kent Wildlife Trust and Natural England is set to bring benefits for breeding birds and livestock and improve the countryside around the Great Stour.

Tue, 21 Dec 2010: UN sets up new biodiversity body: From UNEP: "A new international body aimed at catalyzing a global response to the loss of biodiversity and world's economically-important forests, coral reefs and other ecosystems was born yesterday by governments at the United Nations 65th General Assembly (UNGA). It underlines a further success of the UN's International Year of Biodiversity and should provide a boost to the International Year of Forests which begins in January 2011, and the international decade of biodiversity, also beginning in January 2011."

Tue, 21 Dec 2010: River Wye celebrates nomination as favourite river: The River Wye has been given an early Christmas present to celebrate being voted the nation's favourite river. A plaque to mark the honour is officially handed over this week to members of the Wye and Usk Foundation, the conservation charity which cares for the river.

Tue, 21 Dec 2010: Flatford winter river walk: The Guardian's top ten winter walks includes a new visit to an old favourite, the Stour Valley and Dedham Vale, in the company of local National Trust warden David Piper.

Sun, 19 Dec 2010: River blindness pioneer René Le Berre dies at 78: The pioneering French entomologist, whose work identifying the cause of river blindness saved the sight of millions in West Africa, died earlier this month. This New York Times article looks back on his life and work.

Sat, 18 Dec 2010: Mystery oil leak threatens River Teifi: Environment Agency Wales are probing a sudden oil spillage in Cardigan.

Sat, 18 Dec 2010: Wildlife Trusts want ambitious targets for phasing out peat: The Wildlife Trusts has welcomed the launch of a Government consultation which looks to phase out the use of peat in all horticultural sectors, but warned that even greater urgency is needed if we are to restore and manage our peatlands effectively.

Fri, 17 Dec 2010: Rossport campaign calls for solidarity: We've been bringing you news from the heroic Rossport protest against the Corrib gas pipeline for a good few years now. Here's the latest news from Rossport Solidarity Camp: "Any day now Shell will find out whether it will be able to continue with the dangerous Corrib Gas Project in Co. Mayo, Ireland Shell's Corrib Gas Project is already decade late and 3 times over budget, impressive for a rural community fighting one of the biggest multinationals in the world! If permission for the pipeline is granted, direct action against the project will continue...".

Fri, 17 Dec 2010: Mini oil slick traps birds on River Purwell: Cooking oil tipped down a manhole caused problems for about 20 birds, which had to be treated by wildlife rescue specialists this week.

Thu, 16 Dec 2010: South London lake receives early Christmas stocking filler: The first stage in restoring fish stocks in a popular Clapham lake began this week when Environment Agency fisheries staff re-stocked it with 800 young fish. Mount Pond on Clapham Common has suffered from poor water quality in recent years, which resulted in the death of dozens of carp in 2007 and 2008.

Thu, 16 Dec 2010: Warming polar bears face new danger from grizzlies: It's not just habitat loss that challenges polar bears in a warming world: there's also a genetic risk of interbreeding with grizzly bears, as this Independent article by Steve Connor explains.

Thu, 16 Dec 2010: CPRE backs government against litter: Bill Bryson, President of the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE), gave his backing today to a new Government-led campaign against litter, Love where you live. The importance of the campaign was highlighted by new figures showing that there has been no improvement in reducing litter in the last year despite a 10 per cent increase in the cost of clearing it up (now GBP858 million a year). Of particular concern was the repeated rise in drinks-related litter, which grew by a further 2 per cent on the previous year.

Tue, 14 Dec 2010: Otters' triumphant return to Welsh rivers and wetlands: Environment Agency Wales has this month revealed the full findings of its latest otter survey: nine out of every ten sites surveyed across Wales are now showing signs of otters, compared to only two out of ten in 1978.

Mon, 13 Dec 2010: Fish-farm lice apparently don't kill wild salmon: New scientific studies reported by Nature suggest sea lice from penned farms may not be such a threat to wild salmon after all.

Sun, 12 Dec 2010: More beaver bother on Scotland's River Tay: Moves to round up escaped beavers have prompted consternation among animal activists, who've set up a campaign group called Save the Free Beavers of the Tay.

Fri, 10 Dec 2010: Volunteer lock keepers needed for the River Trent: British Waterways is inviting people to apply for a unique opportunity, which will see them carry out an iconic and colourful role on the River Trent. For the first time British Waterways in the East Midlands is recruiting volunteers to be Seasonal Lock Keepers, working at a selection of scenic locks on the River Trent between Newark and Nottingham.

Thu, 9 Dec 2010: Is that beach clean? No, then let's redefine "clean"!: Surfers Against Sewage are concerned to learn that Foundation of Environmental Education (FEE) is considering rewriting the rulebook to relax regulations on sewage discharges from Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs). FEE is considering amending the criteria that beaches have to meet to achieve the coveted Blue Flag status including watering down criterion 28 relating to real-time public warnings when raw sewage is discharged. SAS is urging us all to write to the director of FEE calling for Blue Flag beach users to be protected from raw sewage discharges. Follow this link to the SAS website and sign the letter you find there.

Thu, 9 Dec 2010: Helping sea trout on the River Welland: The Environment Agency has carried out works to create a rock-ramp to allow migrating sea trout to pass a weir on the Maxey Cut, a side channel of the River Welland. The weir was acting as a barrier, stopping the fish from swimming to their spawning grounds. Nick Kite, of the Environment Agency's Fisheries, Recreation and Biodiversity Team, said: "Historically, the River Welland had a thriving sea trout population. However, in more recent years, they have become somewhat of a rarity, with only the occasional one being seen."

Thu, 9 Dec 2010: Big freeze highlights problem of UK's cold homes: Tackling climate change is almost impossible without action on home insulation. One in three people [34 per cent] in the UK felt uncomfortably cold in their home during the big freeze, a new survey has revealed, as Friends of the Earth calls for urgent Government action to improve the shoddy state of British houses. The poll, commissioned by the environmental campaigning charity, found that 57 per cent of Britons kept the heating on non-stop for more than 12 hours to try to stay warm - despite energy price hikes that have seen the average annual gas and electricity bill rise to GBP1,228.

Tue, 7 Dec 2010: Map helps reveal invasive plant hot spots: Five local authorities and Environment Agency Wales have been attempting to tackle the spread of invasive plants, namely Japanese Knotweed, by using state of the art technology and digital mapping techniques. The Caerphilly County Borough Council led project, focuses on the Heads of the Valleys area of the Valleys Regional Park which includes the Caerphilly, Merthyr Tydfil, Blaenau Gwent, Rhondda Cynon Taff and Torfaen County Borough Councils.

Thu, 9 Dec 2010: UK can cut emissions by 60% by 2030: From WWF: "A new report from the Committee on Climate Change sets out exactly how the UK can cut CO2 emissions to 60% of 1990 levels by 2030. It's a timely wake-up call for politicians, with the government's own Energy Bill being debated in parliament right now, and environment ministers attending the UN climate talks in Cancun."

Thu, 9 Dec 2010: Birdwatchers: don't disturb wetland birds during the freeze: WWT is urging birdwatchers to take special care not to disturb birds during this spell of severe weather as doing so could increase stress and mortality in birds at a time when they are struggling to survive in the freezing temperatures. During cold weather it's important to minimise any disturbance of wild birds (particularly wildfowl, waders and other waterbirds).

Sat, 4 Dec 2010: Coral reefs may be gone in decades: J.E.N. Veron, former chief scientist of the Australian Institute of Marine Science, explains the bleak outlook for the world's reefs: "I have been repeatedly shocked by the destruction I have witnessed. However, nothing comes close to the devastation waiting in the wings at the moment."

Fri, 3 Dec 2010: Cleaners find strange things in the River Tyne: Live ammunition and a horse's skull are just two of the weird items found by cleanups of the River Tyne this year.

Fri, 3 Dec 2010: New Trustees for the River Trusts: The Association of River Trusts has appointed three new Trustees. Martyn Howat (a Trustee of the Tyne Rivers Trust), Martin Ross (Environmental Manager for South West Water), and Andrew Wallace (Director of RAFTS, Rivers and Fisheries Trusts of Scotland).

Sat, 4 Dec 2010: Mersey River Festival will return in 2011: One of the UK's biggest maritime festivals is to return to Liverpool in 2011. The new-look Mersey River Festival will return for the first time since 2005 to be part of the city's spectacular On The Waterfront celebrations.

Sat, 4 Dec 2010: Hottest year yet?: Forget the snow. Reporting from Cancun's climate talks, Michael McCarthy explains why 2010 is causing consternation as the latest signal of a warming world: in two of the measurement systems used, it's been the hottest year ever.

Fri, 3 Dec 2010: Agency urges caution for river users during spawning season: Environment Agency Wales is urging users of rivers in south Wales to take extra care as salmon and sea trout are currently spawning. The Agency has received reports of people using the rivers Wye and Usk on sensitive spawning grounds in recent weeks. Knowingly disturbing fish during the spawning season can damage fish populations and is a criminal offence. The fish lay their eggs in 'redds' in the riverbed and some activities on or in the river during low flows can be very damaging.

Fri, 3 Dec 2010: Acidification May Push Already Over-Stressed Oceans into the Red: From UNEP: "The future impact of rising emissions on the health of seas and oceans may be far more wide-ranging and complex than was previously supposed, a new report released at the UN climate convention meeting in Mexico says. The study, entitled the Environmental Consequences of Ocean Acidification, has brought together some of the latest scientific research on 'ocean acidification', a process triggered by increasing concentrations of dissolved C02 which is changing the sea's chemistry by lowering the pH of the marine environment".

Fri, 3 Dec 2010: Stunning new towpath for the River Lea: Slightly old news (from last month), but it's nice to see a positive story about the Lea after lots of discouraging coverage recently.

Fri, 3 Dec 2010: Wikleaks reveals Egyptian fears over the River Nile: No big surprise here, but the whistleblowing website has revealed documents that show Egyptian nervousness over the political situation in Sudan and its potential effect on access to the Nile.

Fri, 3 Dec 2010: Pinsent rows the river of death: A fascinating story from BBC News follows Matthew Pinsent and the rowers in Iraq who dice with rockets and suicide bombers to train for the Olympics.

Fri, 3 Dec 2010: RSPB gets cosy with ABP on Humber Estuary: A statement from RSPB this week notes that "Associated British Ports (ABP), the UK's largest and leading ports owner and operator, and Europe's largest nature conservation organisation, the RSPB (Royal Society for the Protection of Birds), have signed a landmark agreement for co-operative working around the Humber Estuary. ABP and the RSPB have a history and partnership which dates back to 1975, and have worked together successfully on a number of conservation schemes related to port-development projects." Let's hope that means an end to proposals like Dibden Bay in future, where ABP wanted to construct a giant new deep-water container port by obliterating an important wetland habitat, much to RSPB's consternation.

Thu, 2 Dec 2010: Invasive species of shrimp found in Wales for the first time: Environment Agency Wales has confirmed that an invasive species of predatory shrimp is inhabiting waters at various locations across south Wales. Dikerogammarus villosus, dubbed the killer shrimp by biologists for its appetite for native species like shrimp, young fish and insect larvae, can alter the ecology of the habitats it invades. It has been confirmed at Cardiff Bay and Eglwys Nunydd Reservoir in Port Talbot.

Fri, 3 Dec 2010: Plenty more fish... in the River Aire: Environment Agency fisheries staff will soon be introducing 3,000 barbel into the River Aire, at various locations near Keighley, Bradford and Leeds. Fish from the Environment Agency's fish farm at Calverton in Nottinghamshire will be introduced into the Aire as part of an ongoing restocking programme, to boost recovering populations in rivers where water quality is improving.

November 2010

Fri, 26 Nov 2010: It may be cold, but it's a warming world: Expect more distracting bluster from climate change deniers as the weather worsens; even so, the Met Office calmly warns us that the world is still warming and, looking at global averages, 2010 is expected to be either the hottest or the second hottest year on record.

Fri, 26 Nov 2010: Crayfish consternation in the Kelvin: There are new fears for Scottish salmon and trout stocks this week after the dreaded American signal crayfish was discovered in Glasgow's River Kelvin.

Fri, 26 Nov 2010: Early release for Welsh white-clawed crayfish: Environment Agency Wales' trial breeding programme for the threatened white-clawed crayfish has proved so successful that it's releasing part of a new population back to the wild earlier than planned to avoid risks from overcrowding.

Thu, 25 Nov 2010: Battle of the Doon (revisited): There's renewed pressure on Scottish Power this week as they step up their plan to abstract more water from the Doon. Visit Save the Doon to find out what you can do to help local campaigners fight back.

Wed, 24 Nov 2010: Wildlife charity saves threatened crayfish from extinction: Those excellent folk at Buglife are trying to save the white-clawed crayfish from extinction by rescuing endangered populations and moving them to safe havens that are free of the dreaded, invasive North American Signal crayfish.

Wed, 24 Nov 2010: Flood management for the future: This week, Defra announced: "New proposals to give local communities a greater say in what is done to protect them from the risks of flooding and coastal erosion", but conveniently forgot to mention the £170 million they're cutting from flood defence budgets at the same time, in one of the most short-sighted examples of government cutbacks to date.

Tue, 23 Nov 2010: Why do we value bottled water so highly?: The bottled water market shows globalization happily at work, and a triumph of advertising and marketing over simple facts, according to this BBC Money Programme report.

Sat, 20 Nov 2010: Have a goosey at the geese this winter: This is the time of year when hundreds of thousands of geese and swans return from their Arctic breeding grounds to spend the winter in the UK, many of them at Wildlife and Wetlands Trust (WWT) centres. You can witness thousands of whooper swans flying into WWT Welney and see them close-up as they enjoy daily warden feeds... see some 18,000 pink-footed geese arriving at WWT Martin Mere... or watch out for the returning Bewick's swans at WWT Slimbridge.

Wed, 17 Nov 2010: What's the matter with the River Lea?: Writing in the Hackney Citizen, Melissa Wright asks why the River Lea came off so badly in last week's Our Rivers public poll of good and bad rivers.

Sat, 20 Nov 2010: The best and the worst river... oh really?: There was plenty of press coverage of rivers this week following the Our Rivers poll, which revealed: "The Wye has been voted the public's favourite river in England and Wales, while The Thames has been voted the worst." No, really? A notably scenic river is voted "the best"... and the one that runs through the biggest city in the country (where more people are likely to vote in an online poll) is "the worst"?

Now, full marks to Our Rivers for getting people talking about river issues, but what lessons can we learn from this exercise? Is it any real surprise that people like scenic rivers such as the Wye? Arguably, rivers in unattractive urban areas are far more valuable to people than those in rural idylls like the Wye Valley, but they can never compete on the same terms in an aquatic beauty contest: Merseyside and East London will never again be like rural Wales. What really matters is what we do to make the bad rivers good. The Thames recently and rightly garnered a huge international award (the Theiss River Prize) recognizing how hard many people have worked (and are working) to bring it back "from the dead"; a rather simplistic "worst river" judgement by lots of people who know little or nothing about the river is a kick in the teeth for all that effort, and for all those community groups who regularly do their bit to make the Thames better. Hot on the heels of the Theiss Prize, the Our Rivers poll's judgement on The Thames seems, frankly, rather ignorant and unhelpful: it was a striking juxtaposition of an informed judgement ("The River Thames was selected out of hundreds of rivers across every continent as the winner of International Theiss River Prize, which celebrates outstanding achievement in river management and restoration.") and a crass commentary ("It's a filthy excuse of a river"). To be fair, Our Rivers tried very hard to make wider points, but they were lost in most of the coverage I saw, which boiled down to "Wye good", "Thames bad".

Anyway, enough grumbling... here's a positive suggestion for next time: Environmentalism isn't about chiding governments and agencies into solving our problems from the cosy comfort of our computers. What can make bad rivers good? Time and time again, in many different countries, we've seen that what works best is energetic people in ordinary communities taking responsibility and turning things around. So next time... maybe we could use an exercise like this to encourage people to join local river groups and start making a positive difference?

Thu, 18 Nov 2010: Take a climate-busting 2011 holiday in the UK: Why fly overseas when you can kill your carbon footprint and holiday at home? You can help the planet and the National Trust's valuable work by taking your break in one of their cottages in the UK.

Thu, 18 Nov 2010: Cornwall battles with mops and buckets: Cumbria last year, Cornwall this year, and doubtless many more flash floods to come.

Thu, 18 Nov 2010: Can the Terminator terminate global warming?: Arnold Schwarzenegger is proposing to become a climate-change buster when he leaves office, but critics are asking whether it's simply a ploy to position himself for president?

Thu, 18 Nov 2010: How the Cornish village of Alatrnun flooded: This interesting piece from BBC news explains how and why one Cornish village suddenly found itself underwater last week.

Thu, 18 Nov 2010: "Flooding should not be a party political issue": So declared Cumbria MP Tony Cunningham, in an ironically timed Commons debate on the Cumbrian floods this week designed to highlight the unwise decision to cut flood defence budgets. After a long speech on the issue, Mr Cunningham concluded: 'Flooding should not be a party political issue. It should be an issue of national interest, on which we all work in concert to achieve the best results. However, an air of chaos is creeping into flood defence policy and planning in DEFRA. The GBP170 million cut in flood defence budgets just is not necessary. Indeed, it is fundamentally wrong. We all want to see greater efficiency in how public money is spent. I support the Minister on that, but I cannot support a GBP110 million cut in capital spending and a cut in excess of GBP60 million in flood and coastal erosion defence maintenance budgets.'

Mon, 15 Nov 2010: SAS: Clean beaches? Not what they seem!: Clean water campaigners Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) have warned the water industry that there's more to be concerned about than celebrate. Defra has just released the 2010 bathing season results for the UK and both water companies and Government agencies have been quick to boast about an increase in beaches attaining the guideline standards. Whilst trying their hardest to divert attention away from 16 beaches failing the 34 year old, inadequate and outdated water quality standards and a reduction in beaches failing to attain the bare minimum mandatory standards. According to SAS, even beaches with supposedly high water quality still pose a significant risk to water users.

Fri, 12 Nov 2010: Schools pitch in for wildlife: For over a year, schoolchildren have been going wild in a bid to develop the best school garden in England as part of Natural England's Big Wildlife Garden initiative. Today, Natural England announced that Spire Infant School in Chesterfield has scooped the title of School Wildlife Garden of the Year.

Fri, 12 Nov 2010: Greenpeace court action to halt deep water oil drilling: Greenpeace today dragged the Government into the High Court in London in a bid to stop offshore drilling in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon disaster. Lawyers acting for the environmental group filed a claim at the Royal Courts of Justice this morning seeking a halt to the issuing of new licences for deep sea drilling until the causes of the Deepwater Horizon explosion have been properly established. A hearing is expected in the coming weeks.

Mon, 15 Nov 2010: Have otters returned to the Trent in Nottingham?: Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust is delighted that a visitor to the charity's Attenborough Nature Reserve managed to capture an otter on camera. While staff and volunteers have know otters to be present on the reserve for a number of years due to evidence such as otter droppings (known as spraints), the animals themselves are very rarely seen. This is thought to be the first time anyone has ever photographed an otter on the reserve and the Trust is now hoping they might find evidence that otters are breeding along the Trent.

Fri, 12 Nov 2010: Why we must protect Welsh marine life: One year after the Marine Act came into force, green groups have challenged the Welsh Assembly Government to stick to its guns over coastal protection.

Fri, 12 Nov 2010: Marine and Coastal Access Act: One year on: On the first anniversary of the passing of the Marine and Coastal Access Act (MCAA), The Wildlife Trusts is calling on Government to make a statement demonstrating it is still committed to establishing a network of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs).

Fri, 12 Nov 2010: Salmon return to the River Churnet: The Environment Agency, working with the Trent Rivers Trust which is funding the operation, have released 40,000 young salmon into the River Churnet each year since 2004 as part of the ongoing rehabilitation programme to restore a breeding population of adult salmon to the River Trent system.

Fri, 12 Nov 2010: Businesses have water worries too: A survey of 302 world-leading companies by the Carbon Disclosure Project reveals growing concerns about water prices, droughts, floods, and other water-related issues.

Fri, 12 Nov 2010: Over-abstraction is harming Spey Salmon stocks: Salmon catches on Scotland's River Spey are down 50 percent this year, and fisheries experts claim excessive water removal from the river is to blame.

Thu, 11 Nov 2010: Bringing back the Potomac: We like to bring you occasional stories of river resurgence from elsewhere in the world; here's what campaigners are trying to achieve with Washington DC's famous waterway.

Thu, 11 Nov 2010: French won't help the eel: European eel populations are losing out from France's refusal to ban glass (juvenile) eel exports.

Thu, 11 Nov 2010: Helpful hippo saves standed animals: So much for survival of the fittest: this interesting report from the Mara River in Africa shows there's altruism even in animals.

Wed, 10 Nov 2010: Conservationists issue water challenge to Government: A group of 14 environmental organisations has called on the Government to take action on wasted water, pollution and wetland wildlife. The new Blueprint for Water is published today and sets out how the Government could ensure the health and sustainability of England’s water environment by 2015.

Tue, 9 Nov 2010: Lead still being used to shoot ducks illegally: A report published today confirms that the law aimed at stopping toxic lead from poisoning water birds is not working. The study found that 70% of wild ducks bought in England had been illegally shot with lead. Environmental Protection Regulations 1999 made it illegal to shoot water birds with lead or to use lead shot over wetlands.

Sat, 6 Nov 2010: Charlie planning to go solo for the environment: Charlie Hopkins has been helping community groups and individuals fight eco battles for over 20 years. After working with EarthRights Solicitors for the last decade, Charlie is now going solo as a planning and environment consultant... and he's still the man to call if you have a planning battle on your hands or a public inquiry to fight.

Sat, 6 Nov 2010: SAS encourages young beach cleaning volunteers: Clean water campaigners Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) are joining forces with youth volunteers from the Mullion Community Centre, as part of the UK-wide 25th Hour social-legacy campaign to inspire more people to volunteer their time towards good causes and fight marine litter. Youth volunteers will be cleaning up marine litter from their beautiful local beach with SAS at Praa Sands on Sunday 7th November from 1.30pm with food at the Sandbar at 4pm.

Sat, 6 Nov 2010: A billion depend on the rivers of Tibet: Why should people care about the Tibet issue? According to a speech this week by the Dalai Lama, it's not just a matter of human rights: over a billion people depend on water that originates from the Tibetan plateau, so it's an environmental question too.

Sat, 6 Nov 2010: River Nar on course for a cleanup: The River Restoration Centre is helping the Environment Agency, the Norfolk Rivers Internal Drainage Board, and Natural England to improve Norfolk's over-neglected River Nar.

Sat, 6 Nov 2010: Yangtze river dolphin may be extinct: According to the Natural History Museum, time may be up for this seriously endangered species.

Sat, 6 Nov 2010: It's National Flood Awareness Week: Ten years on from the great floods of 2000, National Flood Risk Awareness Week continues to prepare people for a repeat performance.

Mon, 1 Nov 2010: Severn Salmon stocks boosted by Angling Society Wales: An Angling Society in Montgomeryshire is helping to improve fish stocks in the River Severn by part-funding Environment Agency Wales' release of 6,000 salmon.

Mon, 1 Nov 2010: Conference announcement: The future for inland waterways: The 2010 AINA Annual Conference on 15th November 2010 will include a keynote speech by the Waterways Minister, Richard Benyon MP as part of an exciting programme of speakers.

Mon, 1 Nov 2010: More wildlife spotted by the water: According to this slightly lazy report from The Guardian, "Sightings of kingfisher, newt and other wildlife show that the waterways are healthy and thriving ecosystems". But that doesn't follow at all from the latest survey of wildlife sightings by British Wildlife. Only last week, the RSPB was telling us that "while chemical pollutants have fallen slightly, river wildlife has suffered."

Mon, 1 Nov Oct 2010: Ponds are the way to improve water quality: We're a bit late bringing you this thought-provoking article by Jeremy Biggs of Pond Conservation, which argues that improving ponds is a quicker and easier way to improve water quality than focusing on rivers and streams.

October 2010

Sat, 30 Oct 2010: Still time to celebrate your river... or rescue its reputation: Only a couple of days left until voting closes in the Our Rivers Awards 2010. The river Wye is currently leading the Best River category, but the Thames and Dart are just a few votes behind. Make sure your vote counts: send it in by 31 October.

Thu, 28 Oct 2010: Have you say on Dorset's River Frome: One of Dorset's best-known rivers, the Frome, will be in the spotlight, next week, when the Environment Agency unveils its latest plan to boost wildlife on this important west country river. The latest draft will be available to view on the Environment Agency's website from November 1 until December 1, 2010. Hard copies can also be viewed at public libraries in Wareham and Dorchester

Thu, 28 Oct 2010: Government calls for water mill renaissance: Climate Change Minister Greg Barker has called on enterprising communities to harness the power of their rivers and streams to generate both green electricity and money, as he visited the Torrs Hydro scheme in New Mills, Peak District.

Thu, 28 Oct 2010: Working together to tackle river pollution in Berkshire: The Environment Agency and Thames Water have been working together to improve the quality of Slough’s rivers by launching a series of pollution prevention campaigns in the town's most populated areas.

Thu, 28 Oct 2010: Upcoming crayfish conservation conference at Bristol Zoo: Buglife have announced a forthcoming conference on the future of the white-clawed crayfish in Bristol on the 16th and 17th November 2010.

Thu, 28 Oct 2010: Fish find a haven on the River Wear: The River Wear could soon become a haven for fish thanks to a low-tech scheme which will help to protect them from the effects of flooding and climate change.

Thu, 28 Oct 2010: Water companies miss targets on leakage: A quarter of our water companies are failing to address leaks, Ofwat says.

Wed, 27 Oct 2010: British rivers fail to make the grade: With the exception of four rivers in Northumberland, British rivers have once again failed to shine against higher EU standards of river quality. Our Rivers campaigner Ralph Underhill commented: "The fact remains that more than 70% of rivers in England and Wales are failing European targets and not enough is being done to change this."

Wed, 27 Oct 2010: Government report offers little hope for river wildlife: Another take on the river quality story, this time from RSPB, who say: "An Environment Agency annual report into the health status of rivers in England and Wales has shown that while chemical pollutants have fallen slightly, river wildlife has suffered."

Fri, 22 Oct 2010: Wild dolphins walk on their tails!: Not a bad trick if you don't have legs.

Fri, 22 Oct 2010: Climate change will challenge life in rivers: A new study suggests warming waters will have "profound implications" for freshwater ecosystems.

Fri, 22 Oct 2010: Farmers help to fight river pollution in Scotland: The Scotsman reports on how SEPA is working with farmers to tackle watercourse pollution.

Thu, 21 Oct 2010: Rare cuttlefish evades capture: A cuttlefish not seen in Strangford Lough for 30 years managed to escape from the scientists who caught it earlier this week.

Thu, 21 Oct 2010: Illegal eel nets found in Cambridgeshire: RSPB and the Environment Agency have discovered four illegal eels nets on an East Anglian river.

Wed, 20 Oct 2010: Government slashes flood-defence budget: Over GBP170 million is being slashed from flood defence as part of the sweeping government cuts this week, so let's hope it doesn't rain this autumn.

Tue, 19 Oct 2010: River Itchen vandals strike in Hampshire: The Environment Agency has expressed concern at the increasing damage caused to its river structures in Hampshire following a recent spate of attacks by vandals.

Tue, 19 Oct 2010: Beetle photo scoops award for 14-year-old Adam: A stunning photograph of a Blue leaf-beetle taken by 14 year old Adam Hawtin has won the Young British Wildlife Photography Award 2010.

Tue, 19 Oct 2010: Wildlife punk: Chris Packham: The Independent suggests BBC wildlife presenter Chris Packham makes a refreshing change from the softly spoken voices in the bushes.

Mon, 18 Oct 2010: Otters surge back from the brink: 30 years after a brush with extinction, otters are now 10 times more common than they used to be.

Mon, 18 Oct 2010: RSPB welcomes cancellation of Severn Barrage: The RSPB has welcomed the Government's decision to abandon plans to build the Severn Barrage, but WWF is concerned that tidal energy shouldn't be abandoned completely.

Sat, 16 Oct 2010: Farming and rivers: In this episode of BBC Radio 4's Farming Today, Charlotte Smith visits a research centre in Leicestershire to find out what farmers can do to stop pollution entering rivers. Listen again by following the link to BBC iPlayer (or download the programme as a podcast).

Fri, 15 Oct 2010: Job vacancy: Thames 21 seeks River Shuttle Riverkeeper: Thames21 is the leading environmental charity for London's waterways, working with communities to transform their local rivers and canals. This small, dynamic charity is looking for a key member of the team to manage a programme of community engagement and environmental enhancement activities along the River Shuttle. The project will focus on the publicly accessible river and riverside space of the River Shuttle and Wyncham Stream with particular focus on Holly Oak Wood Park, Willersley Park and Parishwood Park. Closing date: 28th October.

Fri, 15 Oct 2010: South West coast path gears up for the Olympics: Natural England has begun public consultation on plans for improved coastal access in Dorset. Proposals for an improved coastal access route from Lulworth to Portland have just been published, marking the first stages of the England Coast Path set in motion by the Marine & Coastal Access Act 2009.

Fri, 15 Oct 2010: State of the UK's Birds 2010: a conservation barometer: As nations gather in Nagoya, Japan, next week, for the world biodiversity conference, a coalition of UK conservation organisations has just published a report using the UK's birds as a barometer of conservation success.

Thu, 14 Oct 2010: Electro-fishing on the Lower Lee: Environment Agency Fisheries Officers are carrying out fish surveys this week along 7km of the Lower Lee, historically one of the most polluted rivers in the country. It has traditionally been difficult to obtain fish population data from the Lower Lee, due to the shallow depth of the channel and obstructions along the course of the river. Environment Agency officers are using a specialised electro-fishing 'boom' boat to check fish populations from Stonebridge all the way to Lee Bridge Weir.

Thu, 14 Oct 2010: 50th anniversary of the Exeter floods: Fifty years ago, in October 1960, floods devastated more than a thousand properties in Exeter, 500 properties in Tiverton and dozens of properties in towns and villages including Dulverton, Bampton, Bickleigh and Stoke Canon. Further flood misery followed in December. In the years that followed millions were spent on flood defences built to reduce the risk of the the same thing happening again. The Environment Agency will be commemorating the event and celebrating its successes in reducing the risk of flooding in a series of roadshows starting next week.

Thu, 14 Oct 2010: Environment Agency and Natural England survive, but only just: Sweeping government cuts have affected more than 90 bodies managed through the government's environment department. Although the two most important bodies survive, they will be "radically reformed".

Wed, 13 Oct 2010: Thames wins world's biggest river prize: The Thames has scooped the International Thiess River Prize at the 13th International River Symposium in Perth, Australia.

Wed, 13 Oct 2010: How the River Thames came back from the dead: Richard Gray looks at how the Thames was revived after being declared biologically dead only a few decades ago.

FlagTue, 12 Oct 2010: Fears grow for the Murray-Darling: The sad saga of Australia's Murray-Darling river basin continues, with one professor attributing the area's problems to a long history of government mismanagement.

Sat, 9 Oct 2010: Fears still mounting over the damaged Danube: Press reports over the major toxic sludge spill into the river Danube have presented a confusing picture of the actual damage.

Sat, 9 Oct 2010: WWF insists it's not too late for global warming: According to a new press release from WWF: "Even if the world meets its current 2020 targets for cutting greenhouse gases, that won't be enough to stop global warming or avoid dangerous climate change. But it's not too late, or too difficult, to aim a bit higher".

Fri, 8 Oct 2010: New Droitwich canal link to be completed: Work will soon commence on the River Salwarpe in Droitwich to reconnect the Barge and Junction canals in Worcestershire.

Sat, 9 Oct 2010: International efforts to save dugongs, the world's last remaining 'mermaids': Dugongs are believed to have been at the origin of mermaid legends when spotted swimming in the water from a distance. Now the remaining populations of this seemingly clumsy sea mammal, commonly known as a sea cow, are at serious risk of becoming extinct within the next 40 years, so a UN Conference has launched a new conservation strategy to protect them.

Wed, 6 Oct 2010: Flood protection and wildlife boost on the Dyfi Estuary: The Ynys Hir Nature Reserve on the Dyfi Estuary is set to benefit from an innovative Environment Agency Wales scheme to improve flood protection for the local railway line and help wildlife by re-creating the area's lost salt marsh.

Tue, 5 Oct 2010: Global warming is increasing river flow: The amount of water pouring from the world's rivers has risen rapidly since 1994, a new study shows.

Tue, 5 Oct 2010: Marine life census reports: The Natural History Museum summarizes findings from the 10-year study, which involved 2,700 scientists from 80 nations.

Mon, 4 Oct 2010: RSPB: Top 40 birds most in need of help: More and more bird species are facing an uncertain future. The RSPB has today identified the top 100 species in the UK that most need help to maintain their status. Forty of these have been prioritised for immediate action by the RSPB, but the society is today asking for help from government, industry, other charities and the public to provide a future for these birds.

Fri, 1 Oct 2010: Trent Rivers Trust Annual Stocking boosts the Trent and Churnet: A hundred and sixty thousand young small salmon will be stocked into the Rivers Dove and Churnet on Monday 4 October 2010 by the Trent Rivers Trust. The fish will be brought from the Environment Agency's Kielder Hatchery in Northumberland by articulated lorry in cool, well oxygenated water to ensure they are in the fittest possible condition when stocked into the river. The local Environment Agency fisheries team will help with the distribution and stocking.

Fri, 1 Oct 2010: Shooting a water vole success in Somerset: A press release from the BASC reports: "Water voles have been brought back from the brink of extinction in Somerset thanks to a campaign of mink control led by the UK's largest shooting organisation, the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC). The water vole, which is Britain's most endangered mammal, is rapidly re-colonising parts of the Somerset Levels where they have been absent for many decades."

Fri, 1 Oct 2010: Eel catching ban comes into force: A six-month ban on eel catching aims to reverse a drastic decline in numbers.

September 2010

Thu, 30 Sep 2010: Major flooding exercise to test emergency response in England and Wales: A large-scale emergency flood exercise will take place across England and Wales next year to test national and regional responses to severe flooding from rivers, the sea, reservoirs, groundwater and surface water. Exercise Watermark will bring together government bodies, big business, and local communities to trial responses to a range of scenarios which could occur during a flood emergency.

Thu, 30 Sep 2010: RSPB reports surge in young members: The RSPB's youth membership, Wildlife Explorers, has exceeded 200,000 members for the first time, making it the largest wildlife club for children in the UK.

Thu, 30 Sep 2010: New book celebrates the best of British nature writing: A landmark new anthology celebrating British wildlife and landscapes with some of the world's greatest nature-writers, has just been published by Elliott & Thompson and The Wildlife Trusts.

Wed, 29 Sep 2010: One in five plants faces extinction: The species wipe-out is continuing, but even the simplest plants (such as common snowdrops) are at risk.

Wed, 29 Sep 2010: Five billion people threatened by water shortages: A major new study of the world's rivers and water supplies highlights that the majority of the world's population is going to feel a major water squeeze as the century progresses.

Wed, 29 Sep 2010: Ten-year census of marine life about to report: Nature explains how this fantastic survey came about at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts, USA.

Wed, 29 Sep 2010: Environment Agency Wales releases 100,000 salmon into Taff: The mass release started last week and will continue until the start of October. It is part of an annual programme which continues to support the salmon population in the Taff as mitigation for the Barrage at Cardiff Bay.

Tue, 28 Sep 2010: New research project to tackle water pollution from agriculture: According to Defra, farmers are getting involved in one of the largest studies of its kind to establish the best ways of halting water pollution from agriculture. They will develop an understanding of how pollutants move through river systems and will test up to 80 methods for reducing their impact. These include satellite technology (GPS) to ensure fertiliser is spread in the right places; better-designed farm yards to stop pollution draining into fields and rivers; and designing ditches and ponds to soak up substances.

Tue, 28 Sep 2010: Surfers remind water industry that year-round sewage treatment is utterly vital: Clean water campaigners Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) were on hand to greet delegates at the 4th European Water and Wastewater Management Conference in Leeds, with direct reminders that turning Ultra Violet (UV) sewage treatment systems off outside the bathing season dramatically increases the health risk to surfers and waveriders.

Fri, 24 Sep 2010: UK wildlife protection is a failure: A major new government review finds huge new wildlife protection measures are needed to conserve dwindling biodiversity.

Fri, 24 Sep 2010: Eels need help navigating our rivers: Many more river "bypasses" are needed to help dwindling eels slither and slide around our waterways, according to this article from The Independent.

Thu, 22 Sep 2010: Greenpeace campaigners step up oil rig protest : Environmental campaigners who yesterday stopped an oil platform from leaving Scotland to drill a deep water well have attached a purpose-built reinforced 'survival pod' to its huge anchor chain and say they now have the means to continue their occupation for a month.

Thu, 22 Sep 2010: Over 450 people help in River Dee cleanup: There was a huge tunout for a cleanup of the River Dee last weekend and about 4-5 tonnes of rubbish were removed.

Wed, 22 Sep 2010: Welsh restaurants: don't buy poached fish!: Hoteliers and restaurant owners in North Wales are being warned by Environment Agency Wales not to buy untagged fish from poachers. With rivers in full flow, this is a critical time for migrating salmon and sea trout making their way back upstream to spawn. And the Agency is keeping a watchful eye, not just for poachers, but also on the places which buy illegally caught fish and sell them to their customers.

Wed, 22 Sep 2010: Compromise on cross-border river policing: Measures are being proposed for sensible policing of rivers that cross between England and Scotland following the recent prosection of Scottish anglers who didn't possess an English rod licence to fish the River Esk.

Mon, 21 Sep 2010: Living Seas artwork on display: An installation by an artist who won The Wildlife Trusts' Underwater Award, a unique bursary to fund diving lessons to explore life under the UK's waves, today goes on display at The Society of Wildlife Artists (SWLA) Annual Exhibition in London.

Sun, 20 Sep 2010: Cockles cut mine pollution: A new water pollution filter made from cockle shells (among other things) is helping to cut pollution from an old zinc mine on the River Rheidol near Aberystwyth.

Fri, 17 Sep 2010: Defra considers new ways to manage floods: Environment Minister Richard Benyon has met insurers to discuss how best to ensure that insurance is widely available for homes at risk of flooding at a flood summit. The summit brought together key representatives from the insurance industry, the National Flood Forum, the Environment Agency and local government to discuss the challenges in managing future flood risk.

Sat, 18 Sep 2010: What are you doing for World Rivers Day?: There's just over a week to go before World Rivers Day on September 26th. Still time to organize an event, even if it's just an informal walk, picnic, or impromptu river clean.

Fri, 17 Sep 2010: Are you ready for Exe estuary flooding?: People living around the Exe Estuary are invited to a public exhibition next week to learn how the Environment Agency is planning to tackle local flood risk over the next 100 years. Over the past six months the Environment Agency and local authorities have been working on the Exe Estuary Strategy developing predictions for flood and coastal erosion around the estuary. When complete it will provide flood defence options for places including Dawlish Warren, Exmouth, the Lower Clyst and Powderham banks.

Fri, 17 Sep 2010: Touring the floodwaters of Pakistan: BBC correspondent Aleem Maqbool is travelling the Pakistan Indus river this week, writing a diary of how lives have been devastated by the recent floods.

Thu, 16 Sep 2010: It Never Rains But It Pours For Scottish Bathing Waters: Clean water campaigners Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) are frustrated with yet another year's shocking bathing water results for Scotland. During the course of the 2010 Scottish bathing season 13 beaches recorded single sample failures with 4 beaches failing outright to reach bathing water standards that are 34 years old and that will soon be superseded by more stringent standards.

Thu, 16 Sep 2010: High water use could cost you more: If your water use makes more contribution to climate change, shouldn't you have to pay more?

Thu, 16 Sep 2010: Charting Saxon and Roman life near the River Alde: Marshes near Aldeburgh, Suffolk are revealing their secrets in a fascinating new archaeological dig.

Thu, 16 Sep 2010: Thames tunnel costs soaring into the billions: The cost of Thames Water's proposed sewage tunnel has more than doubled to a current estimate around four billion pounds.

Tue, 14 Sep 2010: GM salmon heads to the table: The US Food and Drug Administration is poised to approve GM Atlantic salmon, but what effect will it have on wild species?

Thu, 9 Sep 2010: Thames Whale skeleton goes on show: A huge whale skeleton found under the River Thames has been briefly exhibited at the Museum of London Docklands before heading to its new home at the Natural History Museum.

Wed, 8 Sep 2010: New boy canoe: Join Welsh clothing company Howies as they introduce their newest member of staff to the company with a morning canoe ride on the Teifi.

Fri, 10 Sep 2010: London celebrates the River Thames: It's the biggest and bestest river festival this weekend: the Mayor's Thames Festival in London. There'll be dozens of events at ten major venues in four zones stretching from Westminster Bridge to Tower Bridge.

Thu, 9 Sep 2010: 'Killer shrimp' found in UK for the first time: An invasive species of shrimp, commonly known as the 'killer shrimp' has been found at Grafham Water reservoir in Cambridgeshire. This is the first time the shrimp has been found in this country. The shrimp is a voracious predator (hence its common name of 'killer shrimp') and kills a range of native species, such as freshwater invertebrates, particularly native shrimps and even young fish. This alters the ecology of the habitats it invades.

Thu, 9 Sep 2010: Toward the water white paper: Members of the public can have their say on how the country's water supplies are managed in the future. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has just launched an online survey, asking people to give their ideas ahead of the Water White Paper. The Paper, due to be published early next summer, will set out the Government's plans for the water industry. It will address challenges such as future resource needs, charging and affordability.

Wed, 8 Sep 2010: Record numbers of salmon and sea trout in English rivers: Record numbers of salmon and sea trout are being found in iconic English rivers according to figures released today.

Wed, 8 Sep 2010: River Dee project helps threatened mussels: A groundbreaking project to protect threatened pearl mussels in the River Dee has made an important new breakthrough, BBC News reports.

Wed, 8 Sep 2010: Scotland will be "hydro-economy": Three cheers for Alex Salmond, who is trying to champion renewable energy in Scotland, but let's keep a critical eye on the environmental cost of those hydro schemes as well as their benefit.

Sat, 4 Sep 2010: Stockholm Water Week discusses the Water Quality Challenge: The annual meeting of watery minds takes place this week in Stockholm, where the theme of this year's discussions is 'The Water Quality Challenge - Prevention, Wise Use and Abatement'.

Mon, 6 Sep 2010: US: GM-farmed salmon is safe.. or is it?: US regulators say farmed GM salmon is safe to farm and eat, but representatives from 31 different conservation groups disagree.

Sat, 4 Sep 2010: Dambusters restore the Elwha sooner than planned: A contract for the destruction of two dams in Washington State looks set to be signed a year early.

FlagSat, 4 Sep 2010: Poachers are wrecking Irish rivers: Anglers say action against poachers is long overdue, according to this report from the Belfast Telegraph.

Mon, 6 Sep 2010: Rare bee found in Worcestershire Stour floodplain: One of Britain's rarest and most endangered bumblebees has been discovered on a nature reserve near Stourport. Wilden Marsh, owned by Worcestershire Wildlife Trust, consists of a series of wet meadows and woods in the floodplain of the River Stour between Stourport and Kidderminster.

Fri, 3 Sep 2010: Adopt-a-river revisited: It's a few years now since we wrote our very basic introductory guide to adopting and improving your local river. Now we've converted it to Wiki form so anyone can edit or improve it. If you've got practical experience from your own river group, why not add in your thoughts and suggestions?

Fri, 3 Sep 2010: Algae strikes the Great North Swim: The 9000 people looking forward to a charity swim in Windermere this weekend will have to wait a little longer, after the appearance of blue-green algae made the water too dangerous to swim in.

Fri, 3 Sep 2010: UK: be honest about emissions: Britain's chief scientist, Dr Robert Watson, has called for greater honesty about greenhouse emissions: counting the cost of the "stuff" we import, and the emissions we export, UK emissions are rising, not falling.

Fri, 3 Sep 2010: Food industry gets serious about saving water: A great deal of the water we use every day goes into producing food, so it's encouraging to hear British food industry executives making water conservation and efficiency a much higher priority.

Fri, 3 Sep 2010: Saxon boat found in River Ant during flood scheme: Construction workers employed by the Environment Agency have discovered a boat, approximately three metres long, believed to date from Saxon times.

Wed, 1 Sep 2010: SAS forces action on dirty Blue Flag beaches: Clean water campaigners Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) are celebrating as Keep Britain Tidy commit to warning systems informing the public after sewage discharges on Blue Flag beaches. This commitment is a direct response to SAS exposing over 25% of the UK's Blue Flags as currently failing to meet the imperative Blue Flag regulations and failing to warn the public after sewage spills.

Wed, 1 Sep 2010: Tar sands oil industry is polluting Canadian rivers: Detailed studies of Canada's Athabasca river has found increasing levels of toxic heavy metals released during the mining of tar sands for oil.

August 2010

Tue, 31 Aug 2010: Vote for your best and worst river: With only five per cent of rivers in England and Wales described as being in a pristine condition, a new survey has been launched by a coalition of conservationists to celebrate and bring attention to some of Britain's best loved and long forgotten rivers. The Our Rivers Campaign which includes the RSPB, WWF-UK, the Angling Trust and the Salmon and Trout Association, is calling on people in Wales to take part in the first ever Our Rivers Awards by going online and voting for the 'best' or 'worst' river in England and Wales.

Mon, 30 Aug 2010: England's hedgerows: don't cut them out!: New research released today by the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) finds that more hedgerows then ever before are now being protected (42 per cent) with an 18 per cent increase since CPRE's last survey in 1998. However the overall length of England's managed hedgerows fell by 26,000 km (6 per cent) between 1998 and 2007.

Fri, 27 Aug 2010: Bolivia's rivers empty of fish: A cold snap in Bolivia has killed millions of fish and thousands of other marine creatures.

Fri, 27 Aug 2010: Cotswold Rivers Week is coming soon!: Here's a great idea: a regional celebration of rivers in the Midlands (including the Windrush, Evenlode, Coln and Isbourne), coming up in September. Why not try something similar in your region?

Fri, 27 Aug 2010: Forget the nasty service station! Stop off at the National Trust: The clever and increasingly creative National Trust suggests bank holiday motorists give motorway service areas a miss this weekend and break their journey at one of their lovely properties: "Instead of a hurried burger and loo break at a motorway service area, download one of our maps to discover over 30 places which are conveniently located only a few miles from motorway junctions and A roads."

Fri, 27 Aug 2010: High legal costs deter eco campaigners: No big surprise in this Guardian article, which considers how the Aarhus convention is affecting eco campaigns that fight developments in the courts.

Fri, 27 Aug 2010: Ofwat's effectiveness under scrutiny: The water regulator Ofwat will be reviewed to ensure it is "fit for future challenges", the Government has announced. The process will examine "how the industry regulator works, whether it offers good value for money and if it is delivering what the Government and customers expect".

Fri, 27 Aug 2010: RSPB: Why you should plant dead trees in your garden: You could be forgiven for expecting a wildlife charity to wax lyrical about the importance of lush, berry bearing plants for wildlife. But the RSPB believes that wildlife badly needs dead trees in our gardens too. The charity believes that the presence of dead or decaying wood is an important but often overlooked element of wildlife gardening.

Fri, 27 Aug 2010: Major fish kill in Sussex River Line: The Environment Agency is probing another big fish kill this week after 1000 fish were found dead in the River Line in Battle, Sussex.

Thu, 26 Aug 2010: Alien invaders threaten World Heritage Site: Alien wildlife species are multiplying around Europe's Wadden Sea, posing a serious threat to biodiversity. The warning came in a new report launched on Wadden Sea Day, a platform for recent research on the marine World Heritage Site that borders the Netherlands, Germany and Denmark.

Thu, 26 Aug 2010: Environment Agency begins search for environmental pioneers: The Environment Agency today called for entries for its inaugural Environmental Pioneer Awards. The awards, which will be judged by a panel led by Energy and Climate Change Secretary Chris Huhne MP, will recognise companies, government bodies, local authorities, charities and other organisations that lead the way on environmental performance.

Thu, 26 Aug 2010: Brazil plans controversial new Amazon dam: Does climate change make the construction of huge, potentially damaging dams an inevitability? Or is the warming world just an excuse to build more old-style energy infrastructure?

Tue, 24 Aug 2010: Trout wipeout in East Looe River: Environment Agency technical officers are currently investigating after at least 300 trout were killed in a stretch of the East Looe River, near Liskeard, Cornwall.

Tue, 24 Aug 2010: The eel man of the fens: A fascinating and evocative audio slideshow from BBC News in which Peter Carter describes his life as possibly Britain's last remaining eel catcher—a job his family has done for generations. Will moves to stem the decline of eels restore his fortunes?

Fri, 20 Aug 2010: Neptune still supports the coast: The Neptune appeal has been supporting the National Trust's protection of the coast since the 1960s and continues to do so through a new website. The Trust now own 710 miles of coastline in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, including one third of the south west coast of England.

Fri, 20 Aug 2010: Fifteen new areas to give protection to UK seas: Natural England has announced that 15 new Marine Protected Areas have just been created to protect important sea habitats and species.

Fri, 20 Aug 2010: Massive fish kill in River Line, East Sussex: Environment Agency technical officers are working to find out what caused the almost complete loss of aquatic life in a stretch of the River Line on Thursday 19 August.

Thu, 19 Aug 2010: Muslims and the environment: We occasionally hear what Christians have to say on environmental issues, but what of Muslims? This interesting Guardian piece explores the experiences of Moroccan activist Mohamed Attaoui.

Mon, 16 Aug 2010: River Tyne breaks salmon record: A water pumping station on the River Tyne notched up 9240 salmon and sea trout in July, making this river the best for the fish in England and Wales!

Mon, 16 Aug 2010: Can science solve Argentina's transboundary pollution dispute?: Campaigners against a paper mill in Uruguay that pollutes a river shared with Argentina hopes scientists will provide a resolution.

Fri, 13 Aug 2010: Newborn beavers for the Scottish Beaver Trial: According to the Scottish Wildlife Trust, the first beaver kits to be born in the wild as part of the controversial Scottish Beaver Trial have now been spotted in Knapdale Forest, Mid-Argyll.

Mon, 9 Aug 2010: End of the Amazon trek!: A former British soldier has completed his 4000-mile, two-year walk along the great river.

Thu, 29 Jul 2010: The dead sea is dying out: A 40 percent loss of phytoplankton in the oceans should ring deafening alarm bells about climate change.

Sat, 14 Aug 2010: Government cuts threaten marine research: Marine conservation work is the latest potential casualty of draconian government cutbacks.

Sat, 14 Aug 2010: Salmon make a comeback on River Valency: The Environment Agency has discovered record numbers of young salmon on the main river flowing through Boscastle. After the catastrophic 2004 flood, flood waters swept away salmon spawning grounds and most of the young fish in the River Valency at the time. This exceptional event, caused by a freak storm, resulted in local salmon and trout numbers dropping to a 20 year low.

Sat, 14 Aug 2010: Free fishing days for all the family in the Thames Region: Over the summer holidays the Environment Agency in conjunction with a number of local councils are organizing free fishing days for all the family in Didcot, Farmoor and Swindon (and other towns in the Thames region).

Fri, 13 Aug 2010: Ely "kingfisher hotel" is a great success: A new hotel, custom-built for kingfishers, has had its first breeding success within a year of opening its doors. The 'bird hotel' has nearly 200 entrance holes leading to tailored nesting boxes. Two of the nest boxes are amongst the first in the country specifically designed for kingfishers, with others designed to entice sand martins.

Thu, 12 Aug 2010: Tackling alien invaders in South Scotland: SEPA launched a new project to deal with invasive non-native species (INNS) in Dumfries and Galloway on Wednesday 11 August. The INNS partnership project will deliver a control programme on the Nith and Annan catchments by providing practical support, information, guidance and education on why and how to control INNS, to land managers and the general public. A number of INNS are being tackled, which include Japanese knotweed, Himalayan balsam, giant hogweed, American mink and signal crayfish. The project will also provide a point of contact to ensure sightings can be reported centrally.

Thu, 12 Aug 2010: New Scottish Invertebrate Species Checklists: Buglife has just published the first 15 Scottish Invertebrate Species Knowledge Dossiers. These documents provide summaries of existing information for species known to occur in Scotland and should be a valuable tool for anyone involved in helping to conserve Scottish invertebrates.

Tue, 10 Aug 2010: WWF: Water meters can help solve UK water crisis: Water meters are a key solution to Britain's water shortages, but there still aren’t enough of them around. Figures from water regulator Ofwat show there's been a worryingly low take-up around the country: just over a third of households are on a water meter. We need to see them in every home within ten years.

Thu, 12 Aug 2010: Greenpeace ship will confront 'reckless' oil industry: The Greenpeace ship Esperanza will set off from London later today to confront the oil industry's 'reckless pursuit' of the last drops of oil on the planet, but campaigners are refusing to reveal the eventual target until later in the voyage. The environmental group pledged to meet the industry head-on as it rushes to drill for oil in ever more difficult and dangerous environments.

Tue, 10 Aug 2010: RSPB: Don't cut those hedges just yet!: Are you among the millions of gardeners who will be thinking about trimming hedges ready for winter in the next few weeks? RSPB is appealing to people to wait a while until cutting their hedges if possible. If you cut them this early you could be starving birds and mammals of a vital fruit supply, as many plants will still have an abundance of berries which could see the birds through the winter.

Tue, 10 Aug 2010: SAS gears up for biggest even beach clean tour: This August, Surfers Against Sewage will be hitting the road with the biggest beach clean tour in its 20-year history.

Thu, 5 Aug 2010: Council accused of vandalising Dovedale stones: The famous stepping stones over the River Dove in Derbyshire, noted by Izaak Walton in The Compleat Angler, have had a health and safety makeover—to the consternation of some newspaper commentators and locals. Derbyshire County Council, the National Trust, and (curiously), the Daily Mail have defended the work to make the river crossing safer, but around 500 Facebook users are unhappy.

Wed, 4 Aug 2010: Concerns over River Etherow as drought continues to bite: United Utilities has obtained permission to reduce the water flowing into the Etherow in a bid to maintain supplies to customers in the North, prompting fears for the river and its wildlife.

Wed, 4 Aug 2010: Lampreys turn up in the Isle of Man: The Isle of Man is home to all kinds of fascinating creatures, from Jeremy Clarkson, Norman Wisdom, and Andy Kershaw... to that jawless watery wonder, the lamprey.

Mon, 2 Aug 2010: Scientists confirm past decade was warmest on record: From WWF: "Research headed by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has provided further evidence that climate change is 'unmistakable' and shows clear signs of human fingerprints. The NOAA study drew on 10 different climate indicators and found each one pointed to a world warming due to the influence of greenhouse gases."

Mon, 2 Aug 2010: Public have their say on Lower Thames Strategy: Results from a major consultation on reducing flood risk across the Lower Thames area are now available to view online. The Lower Thames Strategy sets out plans for reducing flood risk for communities between Datchet and Teddington.

Mon, 2 Aug 2010: Matthew Parris in foolish Thames swim: Times columnist and former MP Matthew Parris has set back the wild-swimming cause with a foolish, dangerous swim across the Thames in central London.

Mon, 2 Aug 2010: Water pollution studies may be all wrong: Scientific journal Nature carries an interesting piece about widespread methodological problems in wastewater sampling that may cast doubt on some, widely reported pollution claims.

Mon, 2 Aug 2010: Balsam bashing on the River Derwent: The popular Derbyshire river gets a helping hand from volunteers eager to bash that pesky invader, Himalayan Balsam.

Sun, 1 Aug 2010: The rivers under the sea: Massive new underwater rivers have been discovered flowing at the bottom of the oceans.

Sun, 1 Aug 2010: River events diary for August: Lots more river events happening this month. Don't forget that it's still National Marine Week and National Fishing Month continues for another fortnight.

Sun, 1 Aug 2010: National Trust urges kids to get wild: The National Trust wants to give kids the chance to go wild this summer after their new survey revealed that children are spending 60 per cent less time in nature than their parents did at the same age.

July 2010

Sat, 31 July 2010: Steaming back to the River Medway: The Medway Queen, a 1924 paddle steamer that played a part in the Dunkirk evacuations in 1940, is to find a new home on the River Medway next year.

Sat, 31 July 2010: Asian longhorn beetle appears at Rutland School : A worrisome alien invader beetle that attacks British plants has ruffled feathers by turning up at a primary school in Leicestershire.

Sat, 31 July 2010: River Cole water voles rehoused in Essex: Essex Wildlife Trust is helping to "mitigate" (ah that word) the effects of a development project by rehoming displaced water voles.

Sat, 31 July 2010: East Anglian water company appeals for wise water use: Essex & Suffolk Water is asking its customers to think about the amount of water they use during the hot summer months. Their website has lots of handy water-saving tips.

Fri, 30 July 2010: Year-round sewage treatment is utterly vital: Anti-pollution campaigners Surfers Against Sewage are stepping up the pressure on water companies to provide year-round water that's clean and safe enough for recreational use.

Thu, 29 July 2010: World's oldest creatures found near Solway coast: Two important colonies of endangered tadpole shrimps have been discovered in Scotland, The Guardian reports.

Thu, 29 July 2010: Rare angel shark heads for the NHM: An endangered angel shark, Squatina squatina, caught off Porthcawl in the Bristol Channel and transported to Plymouth Fish Market, has been brought to the Natural History Museum. It was accidentally caught by fishermen this month and then spotted in the fish market by staff from Plymouth's Marine Management Organisation.

Wed, 28 Jul 2010: Balancing the energy books: Independent environment editor Michael McCarthy plays with a new computer-game simulation of UK energy generation and consumption in a bid to cut carbon dioxide emissions without turning out the lights.

Tue, 27 July 2010: Environment Agency continues to replace lost ponds: As part of an ambitious project to begin replacing all 500,000 of Britain's lost ponds, the Environment Agency has this year created 184 ponds and restored a further 50 that were in poor condition. These newly-created ponds have become home to rare species such as Water Vole, Great Crested Newt and Natterjack Toad and the Environment Agency hopes that many more rare species will return as more ponds are created.

Tue, 27 July 2010: Sustainable development indicators for 2010: Defra has just published the usual update to the statistical indicators, with good progress in some areas and more cause for concern about British birds. Please note that this link takes you to a PDF document.

Fri, 23 July 2010: Look what's living in our seas!: Exciting sightings of marine creatures are being reported in the run up to The Wildlife Truts' National Marine Week, which kicks off on Saturday 31 July with lots of events happening all across the country.

Fri, 23 July 2010: River Thames is London's great divide: 54% of Londoners living north of the River Thames never venture south for either work or cultural pursuits and south Londoners are twice as likely to cross the river for culture, according to a survey of 300 Londoners from both sides of the river published by CultureLine, a partnership of 10 museums and galleries along the new London Overground East London route.

Fri, 23 July 2010: New eco village on the banks of the Thames: A recent posting on Indymedia announces a new eco-village in Woolwich, east London, right by the Thames: "Calling all people who would like to experience a new way of life to come down and see for yourself the joy of community living."

Fri, 23 July 2010: Anglian Water fined for eel slaughter: Anglian Water Services was fined GBP20,000 and ordered to pay full Environment Agency costs of GBP27,837 after pleading guilty to seriously polluting the River Crouch at Wickford, Essex.

Fri, 23 July 2010: Watching the algae grow on the River Lea: Len Banister, Chair of the Ramblers Greater London Forum, presents a short film about algae on the Olympic river.

Tue, 20 July 2010: WWF: Tackling global warming is more urgent than ever: Did the UK's cold weather last winter make you wonder if climate change is really happening? Wonder no more. The period from March to May this year was actually the hottest, globally, since records began in 1880. The extent of sea ice melt in the Arctic is hitting a new high too. It's all a timely reminder that we need urgent action to slow the carbon emissions that fuel global warming.

Tue, 20 July 2010: Yangtze flooding tests the dam: Torrential rain is putting the new Yangtze dam under its most severe test so far.

Tue, 20 July 2010: Cardiff Rivers Group on a balsam bash!: One of the UK's newest and most dynamic river groups has been tackling Himalayan balsam this week on the River Ely..

Sat, 17 July 2010: Don't cut the countryside!: On the 30th anniversary of the Wildlife and Countryside Link, its members have issued an unprecedented warning about what the future would hold should the Government slash spending on conservation, wildlife-friendly farming and public recreation..

Thu, 15 July 2010: Dwindling River Usk prompts abstraction fears: Welsh Water has denied that it's abstracting too much water from rivers already challenged by low rainfall..

Sat, 17 July 2010: National Fishing Month begins (17 July-15 August)!: There are events happening all over the country for anglers. If you've always fancied trying out the sport, there's never been a better opportunity.

Sat, 17 July 2010: Anglers worry over dwindling rivers: Scottish salmon rivers are disappointing anglers this year, with water levels at their lowest since the 1970s.

Sat, 17 July 2010: Get hooked on fishing this summer!: The Environment Agency is promoting fishing at "get hooked" taster days in Devon and Cornwall over the next few weeks.

Sat, 17 July 2010: Bristol bus users learn wildlife through the window: What a great idea! Avon Wildlife Trust (AWT) is creating a new way for urban people to get closer to nature by launching Britain's first free-to-download podcast introducing bus passengers to the nature points of interest along their route.

Sat, 17 July 2010: Was Cameron ever really green?: The Independent's Johann Hari asks whether David Cameron ever sincerely cared about green issues.

Thu, 15 July 2010: How climate change is changing our seas: Rising sea levels and warmer temperatures are just two of the marine impacts of climate change in the UK, a new report from the Marine Climate Change Impacts Partnership (MCCIP) explains.

Sun, 11 July 2010: Wild swimmers celebrate the River Witham!: The Outdoor Swimming Society has just celebrated the cleanliness of Lincolnshire's River Witham with a mass swim.

Sun, 11 July 2010: Warming world: hottest June on record: The US NOAA has released the latest signs of the world's warming climate: "This was the 304th consecutive month with a global temperature above the 20th century average."

Mon, 5 July 2010: River Kennet is being overabstracted say ARK: In a long-running campaign, Action for the River Kennet (Ark) have been keeping up the pressure on Thames Water over excessive rates of abstraction to support Wiltshire conurbations like Swindon.

Sat, 3 July 2010: Welsh water shortages cause concern: Welsh Water says changes in lifestyle are taking their toll on reservoirs, now only about 72 percent full following prolonged dry weather.

Fri, 9 July 2010: RSPB says "water your wildlife": We all understand the concepts of drought, water shortages and hosepipe bans. But the thirsty creatures in our gardens are not so au fait with these issues and still need our help being hydrated this summer. The RSPB is urging everyone to ensure they continue to provide fresh water for garden birds and other wildlife, and keep lawns, trees and shrubs green and lush so they provide insect food.

Fri, 9 July 2010: Sibelco fined for polluting Devon stream: Sibelco UK has been fined seven thousand pounds for allowing quarry runoff to pollute Smallhanger Brook near Plymouth.

Fri, 9 July 2010: Wading birds find west Dorset haven: There is cause for celebration at a west Dorset nature reserve, with news of the first ringed plovers to breed in the area.

Fri, 9 July 2010: Lord Redesdale declares war on Ofwat: Lord Rupert Redesdale, a Lib Dem peer, has declared he will "go for the throat of Ofwat as an organisation and very much hope to get rid of it by the end of the year". Speaking to the Anaerobic Digestion and Biogas 2010 exhibition, he criticised the organization's approach to sustainability and tackling climate change.

Thu, 8 July 2010: Environment Agency slammed by National Audit Office: The Environment Agency's approach to tackling diffuse water pollution, such as run-off from agricultural land and roads, has not, to date, proved value for money, according to a report published today by the National Audit Office. According to the new report, "Tackling diffuse water pollution in England", the annual expenditure of £8 million has, to date, had little impact.

Thu, 8 July 2010: Rivers in Devon and Cornwall are drying up: Lack of rainfall has put river levels in parts of the South West at their lowest for 15 years, according to the Met Office.

Thu, 8 July 2010: Student water competition a success: An educational project sponsored by Southern Water and the Design Council to encourage students to identify ways of converving water has been hailed as a great success and should be extended nationally.

Tue, 6 July 2010: Government aims to stop misleading eco-claims: Defra has today published research on claims about environmental performance on products and packaging. The research examined the number and types of claims being made. Environment Minister Lord Henley said: "Marketing and packaging increasingly tell us about the environmental credentials of everything from washing powder to cars. While it's good news that manufacturers are trying to reduce the environmental impact of their products, as consumers we need to know that the claims being made are not misleading, otherwise we will stop using our purchasing power to do the right thing."

Tue, 6 July 2010: Urban wildlife and green spaces get £5.8 million boost: Thanks to new grants from the Access to Nature programme, thousands of people in towns and cities all over England will have the chance to improve green spaces in their area and get closer to nature on their doorsteps. The 29 new projects will work at the heart of communities to provide a host of volunteering opportunities, conservation training, events and group activities, as well as the improvement of often under-used and derelict land in our inner cities.

Fri, 25 June 2010: 60% see bottled water as money down the drain: A new survey by YouGov has found that 60 percent of adults see bottled water as a waste of money, while 71 percent think tap water is just as clean.

Sat, 3 July 2010: Dolphin superpod spotted off Skye: A boatload of eco tourists have spotted a "superpod" of perhaps 1000 dolphins off the north coast of Skye.

Sat, 3 July 2010: Plymouth Blue Mile is a big success!: A one-mile race to highlight threats to the marine world was held in Plymouth this weekend in what organisers hope will be an annual event. Hundreds of swimmers, paddlers, and other competitors raced to cover a mile as fast as they could.

Fri, 2 July 2010: RSPB: North West drought now hitting wildlife: RSPB wetland reserves near the River Dee and the Ribble are suffering from parched conditions and there are warnings that the wildlife they support could suffer unless substantial rain comes soon.

Thu, 1 July 2010: Fish rescued from drying Welsh rivers: After seriously low levels of rainfall in June, Welsh rivers are already proving a challenge for fish.

Fri, 2 July 2010: WWF: Climate target achievable, but only just: The UK's Committee on Climate Change (the government's advisory body on global warming) has concluded that a big step change in policies is needed if the UK is to hit its legal emissions targets under the Climate Change Act. But it says a 42% carbon cut can be achieved by 2020, and WWF is urging the government to adopt this target so the UK can lead the way internationally.

June 2010

Tue, 29 June 2010: Fin porpoises in peril: The rare toothless whales seem to be at greater risk of extincytion than previously supposed, BBC News reports.

Tue, 29 June 2010: Check your flood risk online: The Environment Agency is publishing flood risk data online for over 400 sites in the Thames Valley.

Tue, 29 June 2010: Pay-as-you-go flood protection on the way?: The Environment Agency has suggested local people will need to pay for anti-flood schemes in their areas to cover a shortfall in funding.

Sat, 26 June 2010: Species for the people: name Britain's forgotten wildlife: A host of seemingly forgotten species exist in Britain but many are disappearing fast. Known only to scientists and saddled with obscure Latin names, they lack the common touch and their decline is going unnoticed as a result.

Wed, 23 June 2010: Huge surge in hydropower schemes: Lots more people are making power from rivers, with 31 new licences granted last year alone.

Sat, 26 June 2010: River events for July... and festivals thrive!: Here's our usual monthly roundup of forthcoming UK river events for July, including lots of river festivals in Evesham, Kingston, York, Bedford, Glasgow, Hampshire, and Maidstone, among other places.

Fri, 25 June 2010: Tensions rise over the Nile (again): Journalists are talking up water wars again, which doesn't do much to calm international tensions over dwindling water resources.

Fri, 25 June 2010: Why is there now a hosepipe ban in the North West?: A few months ago, flooded north-west rivers were knocking down bridges; now there'a a hosepipe ban. BBC News magazine writer Elena Egawhary ponders what's happened.

Fri, 25 June 2010: Anglers delight in the start of the season: According to the Angling Time, there have already been some good catches of chub, bream, and barbel as the new coarse fishing season kicks off.

Fri, 25 June 2010: RSPB: Restoring peatlands plays a critical role in reducing carbon emissions: A new report highlights the climate change benefits of work to protect and restore peatbogs in the UK.

Mon, 21 June 2010: It's National Insect Week (21-27 June): National Insect Week (21st to the 27th June, 2010) is organised by the Royal Entomological Society and is supported by Buglife any many other organisations. It is a great way to get interested in insects and to find out how diverse they can be, even in your own garden.

Mon, 21 June 2010: Love insects? Become an entomologist!: The Natural History Museum is using National Insect Week to boost recruitment of future bug hunters!

Mon, 21 June 2010: Drought hit North West asks for more water: United Utilities wants to increase abstraction from rivers and lakes as water levels fall in north-west England, but things don't look too bad elsewhere, so far, according to the Environment Agency.

Mon, 21 June 2010: Lake investment will encourage fish: A new, community-sponsored safe channel near the River Greta is designed to encourage Atlantic salmon, brown trout, eels, and other much needed fish life.

Fri, 18 June 2010: Vandals tip 2000 litres of diesel into the River Almond: The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) is investigating the major pollution incident.

Sun, 20 June 2010: North west rivers and lakes face drought: A run of sorry bad luck continues for Cumbria and the northwest, with news that lakes and rivers are drier than they've been since the 1960s.

Sun, 20 June 2010: Scotland is the new dirty man of Europe: It's official: Scottish beaches are ruined by sewage and other crap.

Fri, 18 June 2010: Hand-drawn maps of London rivers: Thanks to The Londonist (the quirky little London website) for this pointer to John Richardson's lovely maps of London rivers.

Fri, 18 June 2010: The return of the water vole: "Ratty", as the newspapers insist on calling the water vole, is beginning to thrive again in some of our rivers.

Thu, 17 June 2010: How to save water in your garden: As hosepipe bans loom on the horizon, the National Trust reminds us of easy ways to cut water waste in this handy little video guide.

Wed, 16 June 2010: How much water do you waste?: The Energy Saving Trust has an easy-to-use online calculator that will scare you! I'm a water-saving fanatic and even my use came to 30536 litres per year. And that doesn't include all the water in the products and food I buy...

Wed, 16 June 2010: Coarse fishing kicks off!: Anglers across the country are dusting off their tackle for the start of the coarse fishing season on rivers beginning Wednesday 16 June.

Wed, 16 June 2010: New survey of Severn fish stocks: To coincide with the start of open season, the Environment Agency has started a new survey of coarse fish populations in the River Severn between Shrewsbury and Bewdley.

Wed, 16 June 2010: Coalition announces nuclear fudge: The new coalition government will smooth the planning process for nuclear power plants, but not actually subsidize them (or so it says now).

Mon, 14 June 2010: New interactive map of the Celtic Sea launched: The PISCES project has launched a new map to improve how people share their use of the Celtic Sea.

Mon, 14 June 2010: Environment Agency welcomes news of Shad sightings: Environment Agency Wales is calling for help in recording populations of a rare and threatened fish species that appears to be flocking to three Welsh rivers this year.

Mon, 14 June 2010: Afon Ogwen biodiversity set to thrive after river's return to near natural condition: Environment Agency Wales has helped restore the Afon Ogwen to a near natural condition, transforming the habitat to benefit amongst others salmon, otters and water voles.

Mon, 14 June 2010: River Tame fish deaths probe: Hundreds of fish have been killed in the Greater Manchester river.

Mon, 14 June 2010: Eagle project gets the chop: An expensive plan to reintroduce sea eagles to the south of England has fallen victim to government cuts.

Mon, 14 June 2010: 20 years of surfing the sewage: SAS celebrates two decades of busting filth!

Mon, 14 June 2010: My shark's got no nose. How does he smell?: A hammerhead shark from the Natural History Museum is helping scientists to investigate how sharks smell their prey.

Sat, 12 June 2010: Worrying news on migrant birds: The RSPB's summer wildlife survey, Make Your Nature Count, has revealed some worrying results among summer migrant birds in its first few days. Experts monitoring the initial bird results believe the numbers of house martins being recorded are low, with less than 5% of houses having nests. Surveys in 2002 and 2005 found house martins on 6% and 7% of houses respectively.

Sat, 12 June 2010: Save water this week!: It's Water Saving Week and WWF is making it easier for people to save water at home. If everyone pledges to change the way they use water, it will preserve natural resources, reduce carbon emissions, and save everyone money!

Sat, 12 June 2010: Fighting river blindness: Rivers bring pleasure to many; to others they bring the curse of river blindness: the second-largest cause of preventable blindness, worldwide.

Fri, 4 June 2010: Greenpeace boats sunk as environmentalists attempt to save endangered bluefin tuna: Greenpeace campaigners attempted to free endangered bluefin tuna from a fishing net in the Mediterranean Sea this week. Using high-speed inflatable boats, they tried to manoeuvre the net to allow the fish, some of the last remaining bluefin in the ocean, to escape.

Sun, 6 June 2010: Halycon River Diaries Part 4: It's, unfortunately, the final part of this glorious series about a family's efforts to study the wildlife in their local river. Well done to the BBC for its second superb series on British rivers in less than a year.

Sun, 6 June 2010: Relocating wildlife for the London Gateway: The Independent's Sarah Morrison gushes about a huge project to relocate water voles and other wildlife for a new container port on the Thames. There's lots of repetition of PR-company facts and figures and not a lot of questioning of whether it's a good idea or how likely it is to succeed.

Sun, 6 June 2010: Climate South West: 7-11th June: Climate SouthWest (formerly the South West Climate Change Impacts Partnership), a regional partnership, is holding its annual 'Adapting to Climate Change' week from 7th -11th June 2010, featuring a wealth of events to celebrate some of the great work that has been going on in the region, as well as further raise awareness of the impacts of climate change and support actions that can help the region be more resilient.

Sat, 5 June 2010: Award for River Lambourn wildlife project: A huge injection of cash will enable the River Lambourn Community Project to promote river education in and around Newbury.

Thu, 3 June 2010: WWF highlights estuaries on World Environment Day: 5 June is World Environment Day. This year, WWF is using the event to focus attention on the health of estuaries with a new World Estuaries Alliance to step up the protection.

Thu, 3 June 2010: South West Water completes 20-year beach cleanup: South West Water claims its "Operation Clean Sweep" has hugely improved water quality at beaches across the region.

Thu, 3 June 2010: Last call for school wildlife gardens!: Natural England is working with schools to encourage wildlife friendly gardening this Summer with the Big Wildlife Garden - a budding wildlife friendly gardening website. Since the website's launch in September 2009 it has reached over 30,000 children from over 1,000 schools, getting kids outdoors and creating wildlife friendly gardens across the country.

Thu, 3 June 2010: Young wins award for eco-friendly fish: According to this press release from Defra, Young's the fish producer, part of Findus group, was yesterday announced as the winner of the European Business Awards for the Environment for their "Fish for Life" programme for sustainably sourcing fish for their range of products.

Thu, 3 June 2010: America's Most Endangered Rivers 2010: Each year since 1986, American Rivers has released its "America's Most Endangered Rivers" report to spotlight the nation's ten most imperiled rivers.

Tue, 1 June 2010: Exotic pets are ruining our rivers: The Telegraph reports on havoc caused by turtles, terrapins, and other unwanted pets being released into rivers.

May 2010

Sun, 30 May 2010: Halycon River Diaries Part 3: In the third episode of this excellent BBC series, Charlie and Fred find out just how tough life on the river can be when they take possession of an injured baby kingfisher.

Sun, 30 May 2010: BP fails to stop Gulf oil flow: Time for a rethink as BP admits its latest attempt to halt oil flowing into the Gulf of Mexio has failed.

Fri, 28 May 2010: Agency targets Thames boat pollution: Fourteen locks along the Thames are being targetted in an attempt to reduce pollution from boats.

Fri, 28 May 2010: RSPB takes to the streets: The RSPB's Love Nature Week will run from 29th May-5th June and call on members of the public to donate money to raise funds for wildlife all over the UK. The collection is the biggest street fundraising endeavour undertaken by the RSPB and the wildlife charity has asked for people to volunteer just two hours of their time to collect donations to help save threatened creatures and the places they live.

Fri, 28 May 2010: Otters left dead after illegal fishing on nature reserve: Two otters have been left dead after anglers illegally fixed nets in an Environment Agency nature reserve and in the River Hull.

Fri, 28 May 2010: The trashboat adventure: Ever thought about building yourself a little boat from reclaimed junk and rowing it 130 miles up the Thames? Well...

Fri, 28 May 2010: Giant hogweed blitz in Wales: Teams of sprayers are blitzing hogweed on the Lower River Usk from Crickhowell to Newport in Wales.

Fri, 28 May 2010: One year of Scottish beavers: A year ago, Scotland's first wild beavers for over 400 years were released into Knapdale Forest, Mid-Argyll. This marked the start of the Scottish Beaver Trial, a five-year time-limited trial reintroduction and a partnership project between the Scottish Wildlife Trust (SWT), the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) and host Forestry Commission Scotland (FCS).

Wed, 26 May 2010: Europe could act over CSO pollution: The European Court of Justice is the latest battleground over sewage discharges from CSO pipes. Britain could find itself in the dock in a matter of weeks.

Wed, 26 May 2010: Drought fear for northern rivers: Seen much rain recently? Thought not. Now there are fears rivers could reach drought status within weeks.

Sun, 23 May 2010: Halycon River Diaries Part 2: Don't forget to catch up the second part of this lovely BBC series!

Sun, 23 May 2010: Thousands of sewage spills pollute beaches: The Sunday Times has done a big piece on this recurring scandal, championed for years by Surfers Against Sewage.

Sat, 22 May 2010: Activities mark biodiversity day: Lots of things have been happening around the country to mark International Biodiversity Day.

Sat, 22 May 2010: Cleaning up the River Ancholme: The River Ancholme in Brigg is currently receiving a make-over in preparation for a busy weekend of activity in the town. Staff from the Environment Agency are removing weeds, bushes and tree growth from the Old Brewery wharf in the centre of the town. The work is taking place to support Brigg Spring Clean weekend which is taking place in the town on Saturday and Sunday.

Sat, 22 May 2010: Action to tackle declining fish on the River Medway: A series of new fish passes on the Medway should make ti easier for salmon and sea trout to swim upstream and spawn.

Sat, 22 May 2010: Guernsey beaches are still poor: Three of Guernsey's beaches have been rated poor for water quality.

Fri, 21 May 2010: Salmon numbers to increase on the River Mole as massive weir is removed: In the first project of its kind in the south west, salmon and sea trout will soon be free to swim up the whole of the River Mole in North Devon. The Environment Agency and Westcountry Rivers Trust have joined forces with anglers and riparian owners to demolish a massive concrete weir at the Kingsnympton Park Estate. Its removal will give migratory fish access to the top of the river and its tributaries.

Thu, 20 May 2010: Kids want to grow their own!: New research commissioned by the National Trust has hit upon what might be the perfect way to get children to eat more fruit and veg: letting them grow it themselves. Frustrated parents everywhere will take heart from the findings which reveal that 72 per cent of children in the UK would like their own space to grow fruit and vegetables and, outside London, 63 per cent of children would rather eat fruit and vegetables they have grown themselves than buy them from a supermarket.

Thu, 20 May 2010: Time To Save Salford's Rainforests!: Controversial plans to extend the peat extraction license at Chat Moss in Salford have been criticised by the Wildlife Trust for Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside, who are calling on people to send letters of objection to Salford City Council. Mosslands like Chat Moss are incredibly important, because the peat stores huge amounts of carbon, helping to fight climate change, while the habitat also provides a home for a host of amazing plants and wildlife.

Thu, 20 May 2010: Latest UK biodiversity indicators: Defra has just published an updated overview of biodiversity in the UK, which provides an insight into the health of our natural environment. This link will download a short report of the latest indicators in PDF format.

Mon, 10 May 2010: Why biodiversity matters: Pro Chris Baines and the RSPB's Mark Avery discuss why biodiversity matters for the future of the planet in this extract from the BBC Radio 4 Today programme.

Sun, 16 May 2010: Halcyon River Diaries: A promising new series from BBC One: "Filmed and produced by award-winning wildlife cameraman Charlie Hamilton James, it is an intimate look at the wildlife of a typical English river, as seen through the eyes of a family who live beside it and love it."

Sat, 15 May 2010: Cambodian rivers are being dredged to death: TIME magazine explores why rising exports of sand from Cambodia to Singapore are placing the country's rivers in peril.

Fri, 14 May 2010: Yorkshire gets thousands more eels: Around 50,000 European eels are being released into the Dearne Valley washlands in an attempt to reverse an estimated 95 percent decline in the species.

Thu, 13 May 2010: Climate change is hitting lizards: Will lizards survive in a warming world? Scientists are seriously concerned.

Thu, 13 May 2010: Spawning new opportunities for sea trout on Cambridgeshire river: The Environment Agency has recently completed work to improve the habitat on the River Welland, near Peterborough, as part of the River Welland Sea Trout Project.

Thu, 13 May 2010: Tensions rise over sharing the Nile: Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania and Ethiopia want a bigger share of the Nile's waters, a move Egypt and Sudan bitterly oppose.

Wed, 12 May 2010: Giant Battersea frogs launch OPAL Water Survey: Giant frogs and dragonflies covered Battersea Power Station in London last night for the launch of the OPAL Water Survey, a national initiative to get people to explore England's lakes and ponds, collecting valuable scientific information along the way.

Tue, 11 May 2010: Balfour Beatty and United Utilities weigh into the Tyne: Twenty volunteers from the two companies have tackled rubbish on the River Tyne this week, as part of the Clean Tyne Project.

Tue, 11 May 2010: Abingdon carbon cutters plan Thames hydropower: A group of green-minded Oxfordshire residents want to make power for 200 homes from the River Thames.

Tue, 11 May 2010: Boosting the beavers: An additional breeding pair of two beavers, one male and one female, has now been released into the wild in Scotland as part of the Scottish Beaver Trial (SBT).

Sun, 9 May 2010: Can I swim in that river?: That's a question I ask myself everytime I sit by the water. Daniel Start's website is a good place to... start!

Sun, 9 May 2010: The dying River Jordan: Abstraction, pollution, and a general lack of care are destroying one of the world's greatest rivers.

Sun, 9 May 2010: Why cabbies are mucking in to save the Ganga: How long before British cabbies follow their example? Don't hold your breath!

Sat, 8 May 2010: Guernsey saves water with new pumping station: Water conservation is the new name of the game, according to Guernsey Water.

Sat, 8 May 2010: WWF: Gulf accident means all drilling should stop: With new oil exploration set to start in the Arctic in July, WWF is pushing for a halt to all drilling until we understand what went wrong in the Gulf of Mexico.

Wed, 5 May 2010: Hung parliament means climate opportunity: The environment came off badly in the election, but may do better in a parliament where politicians have to cooperate.

Wed, 5 May 2010: Fishermen have to work 17 times harder: Plummeting fish stocks mean British fishing fleets are working much harder than sail-powered fleets in the 19th century.

Tue, 4 May 2010: Worldwide biodiversity decline continues: Biodiversity years and other initiatives are great, but the outlook remains bleak.

Tue, 4 May 2010: Toxic household chemicals still a problem: Leo Hickman finds out why toxic chemicals are mentioned less often, with help from the Greenpeace Labs in Exeter.

Sat, 1 May 2010: River events for May 2010: Lots of walks, talks, balsam busts and cleanups happening all over the country this month. Check out our events diary and please, as usual, feel free to add any more events of your own.

Sat, 1 May 2010: Hundreds of fish die on the River Chelt: The Environment Agency is investigating the deaths of over 300 fish (including trout and bullhead) in Cheltenham.

Sat, 1 May 2010: Help Buglife fight pesticides before 4th May!: Buglife, the UK's champions of insect life, are urging us to join in a consulation on pesticide use in the next few days.

April 2010

Fri, 30 Apr 2010: Celebrating fossils on the Dorset coast: Lyme Regis has walks, talks, and all kinds of events celebrating fossils this weekend.

Fri, 30 Apr 2010: Water voles turn carnivorous: Sacrebleu! Voles on the Kennet and Avon canal have started nibbling on frogs legs, apparently.

Fri, 30 Apr 2010: Cloud computing under a cloud: More suggestions that cloud computing has huge, hidden environmental impacts.

Thu, 29 Apr 2010: Northern Ireland's resounding rivers: A new project aims to shed light on rivers hidden under the streets of Belfast.

Thu, 29 Apr 2010: Field crickets find a new home: According to RSPB, conservationists are reintroducing one of the UK's rarest insect species to areas of newly created heathland.

Thu, 29 Apr 2010: Thriving voles and good news for owls: A big rise in Northumberland vole numbers has proved a boost for owls too.

Thu, 29 Apr 2010: UK rivers are drying out, new report suggests: WWF's new report, "Riverside Tales", suggests some of Britain's rivers are under serious threat.

Sun, 25 Apr 2010: The Great River Elbe nuclear protest: Germans do protests in style: 100,000 people have chained themselves symbolically along the Elbe to protect against the state's nuclear energy plans.

Sun, 25 Apr 2010: Move over Jaws, it's River Monsters!: A great preview of Jeremy Wade's monstrous new TV series. Someone import it into the UK, please.

Thu, 22 Apr 2010: Southern Water will charge more in summer: A slightly old story this, but better late than never: another water company has announced it will charge more in summer when water is scarce.

Thu, 22 Apr 2010: Why Amazon hydro is not the answer to climate change: In this letter to the Financial Times, Aviva Imhof from International Rivers spears the argument that Amazon hydropower is a better option than coal.

Wed, 21 Apr 2010: Pesticides plague Californian rivers: If you think pesticide problems are a thing of the past (DDT, for example), think again. Here's news that home pesticides are ending up in Californian rivers at toxic levels.

Thu, 22 Apr 2010: Making the volcano an annual event: CPRE is suggesting we turn volvanic disruption into a blissful opportunity by creating a national quiet day each year.

Thu, 22 Apr 2010: Surfers voice dismay over CSO inaction: Clean water campaigners Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) have announced they're extremely disappointed with a new ruling requiring water companies to make only minor improvements to their 4,000 unregulated Combine Sewer Overflows (CSOs). These minor improvements fall far short of what is needed to protect and improve the environment and SAS feel this has been an opportunity lost.

Thu, 22 Apr 2010: Cutting back on grass cutting: The RSPB is appealing to gardeners to reduce their mowing and keep grass a little longer for wildlife this summer. The distant hum of lawnmowers can be heard constantly again with the warmer weather, but the wildlife charity wants gardeners to know that slightly longer lawns are a valuable home and food source for birds and other creatures.

Wed, 21 Apr 2010: Anti-Tar Sands Protests Gather Momentum: From Indymedia: "This time last year, few people in the UK had even heard of the Alberta Tar Sands. Now they are moving rapidly up the public agenda, thanks largely to a growing grassroots campaign of resistance and international solidarity."

Sun, 18 Apr 2010: Butterflies get a hand in Warwickshire: To help boost the population of rare Grizzled Skipper butterflies in Warwickshire, ecologists and volunteers from Butterfly Conservation have worked with British Waterways contractors to clear an area of land four metres wide and 580 metres long along the Oxford Canal at Fenny Compton.

Sat, 17 Apr 2010: UK runs on imported water: Remember those flowers you bought, the ones that came from Kenya? Well products like that account for the fact that two thirds of UK water consumption is actually imported through water-hungry finished goods such as beef, cotton, fruit, and vegetables.

Sat, 17 Apr 2010: Rolling the rapids of Montreal: Why do canoers, surfers, and kayakers flock to the Lachine rapids of Montreal?

Sat, 17 Apr 2010: Brazil's Belo Monte dam battle continues: Our friends at International Rivers are leading the charge against plans to build the world's third biggest dam, with help from celebrities including James Cameron and Sigourney Weaver.

Sat, 17 Apr 2010: It was THIS big!: How about hooking an 8ft-long catfish? 18-year-old student Simon Field has done just that... and here are the photos to prove it!

Fri, 16 Apr 2010: Shareholders oppose BP over tar sands: WWF reports: "Today a shareholder resolution about BP's involvement in tar sands production was discussed and put to the vote at the company's AGM. Results presented by BP at the meeting show that almost 15% of voters either supported the resolution or abstained despite the board's recommendation to reject it. This is a significant expression of concern about the company's decision to invest in new tar sands projects."

Fri, 16 Apr 2010: Campaign for dark skies continues: With eight out of ten people having their view of the night sky affected by light pollution, CPRE and the British Astronomical Association's Campaign for Dark Skies (CfDS) are calling on councils, businesses and individuals to take steps to cut their light pollution. We also reiterate our call for the Government to introduce long awaited planning guidance to control lighting.

Thu, 15 Apr 2010: Tadpoles scream when they're attacked: Fascinating new research show how tadpoles of the Argentine horned frog screech when they're threatened by predators.

Mon, 12 Apr 2010: Get your spring wildlife fix with RSPB: Are you looking for a walk in a bluebell carpeted wood to inspire you this spring? Or maybe you're hoping to hear the first nightingale song of the year, witness the early emerging butterflies or catch a glimpse of a red squirrel. However you get your wildlife fix it is now easier than ever to find the perfect place to go with the launch of the new online home for the RSPB's reserves network. One of the many new features included is the ability to search more than 200 reserves by key species.

Mon, 12 Apr 2010: New stamps celebrate biodiversity: Royal Mail announces ten new stamps to celebrate the International Year of Biodiversity in 2010, featuring endangered mammals.

Fri, 9 Apr 2010: Flood and water management bill gains Royal Assent: The Flood and Water Management Bill gained Royal Assent yesterday. The Act will implement several key recommendations of Sir Michael Pitt's Review of the Summer 2007 floods, protect water supplies to consumers and protect community groups from excessive charges for surface water drainage.

Mon, 12 Apr 2010: Wild swimming could save lives: Australian Swimming legend Shane Gould turns conventional wisdom on its head: we should teach people to swim in lakes and rivers where it would really save their lives.

Mon, 12 Apr 2010: The new African land grab: Rich countries and speculators are buying up African land for food and water, according to a frightening new story from John Vidal.

Fri, 9 Apr 2010: How a pebble saves water in your shower: A quiet, clever invention from Paul Priestman could help you adapt to using less water when you wash.

Fri, 9 Apr 2010: Environment Agency helps anglers rescue village pond: The Environment Agency has teamed up with Exeter and District Angling Club to breathe new life into a Devon pond. Sampford Peverell Pond, close to Tiverton Parkway Railway Station, has recently suffered two major fish kills caused by de-oxygenation of the water and algal blooms.

Fri, 9 Apr 2010: Giant squid becomes museum star: A colossal squid specimen, Mesonychoteuthis hamiltoni, has joined the giant squid as one of the exhibits in the Natural History Museum's tours of its spirit collections.

Fri, 9 Apr 2010: Free bird surveys now available for every UK farmer: A pioneering project to survey farmland birds is now open to every farmer in the UK for the first time. The Volunteer and Farmer Alliance (V&FA) has been organising free bird surveys for farmers for eleven years and has finally reached its aim of full UK coverage. The project, run by the RSPB, recently received extra funding from the EU Life + fund to employ new staff allowing it to fill gaps in northern Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and secure coverage in south east England.

Fri, 9 Apr 2010: Cumbrian crayfish under threat: One of the remaining strongholds against the American signal crayfish is now under threat.

Wed, 7 Apr 2010: Drought in the Mekong Basin: The Guardian has a great photo gallery of what's happening in south-west China.

Wed, 7 Apr 2010: Blooming marvellous or a blooming disaster?: Climate change is making plants open faster than at any time for 250 years.

Mon, 29 Mar 2010: Lovelock: Humans won't stop climate change: Jim Lovelock is as pessimistic as ever about human abilities to stop what he calls "global heating".

Sun, 4 Apr 2010: Pollution starts at home: Devon and Cornwall householders have been unwittingly polluting rivers through poorly connected waste pipes.

Sun, 4 Apr 2010: Mekong problems need cooperation: Countries who share the Mekong river resources in South-Eastern Asia must cooperate, experts have insisted.

Sun, 4 Apr 2010: How alien invaders cause problems: A new report from People's Trust for Endangered Species has identified 14 troublesome alien invaders.

Sun, 4 Apr 2010: Rare lichen discovered at Killerton: A rare lichen Micarea parva has been discovered on some damp, shaded volcanic stones on the National Trust Killerton estate in Devon.

Fri, 2 Apr 2010: New carbon scheme ranks big brands: New rules that have just come into force will pitch some of the UK's largest organisations against each other in a drive to cut carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. For the first time large non-energy intensive organisations, which account for about 10% of UK CO2 emissions, will be legally bound to closely monitor and report their emissions from energy use in preparation for carbon trading.

Thu, 1 Apr 2010: UFOs land on UK beaches: April Fool or not? The new Surfers Against Sewage UFOs campaign of course refers to Unidentified Floating Objects! The campaign calls on the public to help identify persistent marine litter and allows them to upload their own UFOs, in the hope that SAS can trace the polluters and change their damaging industrial practices.

March 2010

Wed, 31 Mar 2010: UK Government to deliver Marine Protected Areas: Defra has today published the Government strategy to deliver a network of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) across the United Kingdom. Marine Protected Areas will be vital to protect many species of sea life, from the rare and threatened to the more common, as well as helping ensure our seas and oceans remain healthy and clean.

Tue, 30 Mar 2010: Are roads coming back again?: Rural campaigners were left shocked and angry today after the publication of a new report from the Transport Select Committee, which calls for 900 miles of new dual carriageway as well as a new motorway building and widening programme. It is estimated this would cost at least GBP30 billion, the same as building a new High Speed Rail network.

Tue, 30 Mar 2010: Greenpeace: coal is powering the Internet cloud: Not so fast in the rush to cloud computing. According to Greenpeace, new server farms and data centres are largely being powered by climate-harming coal.

Sat, 27 Mar 2010: River Wye mussels raise concern: Here's another version of that report from last week on the aged freshwater pearl mussels and attempts to make them breed.

Sun, 28 Mar 2010: River events for April 2010: Lots happening all around the UK this month, including several river cleanups in London; courses in pond surveying, reptiles, and water volery; walks along many rivers; and talks about chalk streams and otters. If you fancy a spot of canoeing, you can try your hand at several Go Paddling days.

Fri, 26 Mar 2010: England's coastal path: the journey begins: The way in which the all-England coast path will be created was announced today by Natural England as it published its Coastal Access Scheme. The Scheme has now been approved by government meaning that work to implement the coastal path can now begin in earnest.

Fri, 26 Mar 2010: Buglife calls for massive increase in wild flowers: The UK has lost more than 3 Million hectares of wildflower rich habitat since the second world war, but farming wildlife schemes have only recreated 6,500 ha. Buglife is calling on Government to tackle the issue head on and create a network of wildflower meadows.

Fri, 26 Mar 2010: The growing menace of beach plastic: We seem to have become very adept at moaning about plastic on beaches, and picking it up, but why can't we do anything to reduce it?

Thu, 25 Mar 2010: The great Ethiopian dam rush: Ethiopia is the latest country to get caught up in the promise of electricity from huge and destructive dam-building, to the consternation of long-term opponents such as International Rivers.

Fri, 26 Mar 2010: Agency tempts freshwater pearl mussels to have one more go: Environment Agency Wales is attempting to boost the breeding success of the rare freshwater pearl mussel after discovering a previously unknown population of the species in the River Wye.

Fri, 26 Mar 2010: Last call for the low-carbon economy?: Why climate change is an urgent priority for whoever wins the next election.

Thu, 25 Mar 2010: Put your weapons on the floor for wildlife: The RSPB is appealing to gardeners to stop hedge cutting and be extra careful when they tend to their gardens from now on, as they could injure nesting birds, damage their nests or scare parents away from young birds.

Tue, 23 Mar 2010: Defra tackles greenwash and inaccurate claims—though not its own: New proposals to tackle greenwash and build consumer confidence in environmental claims and labelling have been announced today by Defra. But it's all a bit too token. The same department is still pumping out misleading figures about British contributions to climate change and, elsewhere in government, there's renewed determination to expand airports, build new coal mines, and more.

Tue, 23 Mar 2010: Breath-taking beauty: The Wildlife Trusts' wildflower meadows: After a bitter winter across the UK in 2010, most of us will be eagerly anticipating the coming seasons, and the natural highlights on offer at this time of year are not to be missed. That's why the spring issue of Natural World (The Wildlife Trusts' members' magazine) offers the definitive guide to reserves where you can take in the splendour of our native wildflowers.

Mon, 22 Mar 2010: World Day for Water: Did you turn on the tap this morning and get clean water straight away? Did you flush your toilet as usual? Well today's the annual reminder from the UN that a huge chunk of the world's people still lack clean water and sanitation. Why not do something positive today? You could nip over to the WaterAid website and donate or buy something!

Sun, 21 Mar 2010: Plastiki finally sets sail!: Good luck to David de Rothschild's Plastiki project, which aims to highlight plastic pollution in a boat made from plastic bottles.

Sun, 21 Mar 2010: Government starts planning for peak oil: Well well, some Whitehall action on peak oil. Energy Minister Lord Hunt is calling industrialists in for a chat.

Fri, 19 Mar 2010: Bluefin part#2: Sea Shepherds hint at battles ahead: The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society has announced it will take aggressive action against tuna poachers in Southern Europe this summer.

Fri, 19 Mar 2010: Bluefin part#1: the battle continues: So there's still no agreement to pull bluefin back from the brink.

Fri, 19 Mar 2010: Legal battle to protect our rivers: WWF and the Angling Trust have launched a legal challenge aimed at improving government plans for managing rivers in England and Wales. According to WWF, the government's River Basin Management Plans (which were submitted to the EU in December to comply with the Water Framework Directive) don't set high enough targets or clear timescales for cleaning up and protecting our rivers.

Thu, 18 Mar 2010: Marine Act will not protect seabirds: The RSPB has learned the UK Government's new Marine Conservation Zones will offer virtually no protection to seabirds. While other wildlife and their habitats will be protected by law, the waters used by hundreds of thousands of birds will remain at risk from damage and exploitation.

Thu, 18 Mar 2010: Enjoying water in East Anglia: Canoeing, sailing, fishing, walking and of course rowing are just some of the activities based on or around water that a new plan is hoping will increase in the East of England.

Thu, 18 Mar 2010: For peat's sake: nationally important carbon store under threat: Natural England has launched a comprehensive review of the condition of England's peatlands and the vital role they play in combatting climate change. Three quarters of England's deep peatlands are already damaged or degraded.

Wed, 17 Mar 2010: National Trust appeals for help with alien invaders: One of the biggest threats to British wildlife, the spread of non-native invasive plants, is set to be tackled in Plant Invaders Week, a week of action (5-12 June 2010) at more than 60 National Trust sites. Volunteers apply within!

Sun, 14 Mar 2010: River Eden study targets farm pollution: Newcastle University is launching a four-year study of how to cut pollution from agriculture without sacrificing productivity.

Sun, 14 Mar 2010: Cut your carbon emissions with a National Trust UK holiday: Forget those flights abroad. Spend days at the beach, doing a spot of shopping, stretching your legs on wonderful walks or simply enjoying the perfect picnic; choose a National Trust holiday cottage and get the best access to the best holiday activities this summer.

Sat, 13 Mar 2010: Shell to Sea: Solidarity with Pat O'Donnell!: 100 cars gathered today at noon in the fishing village of Porturlin, Pat O'Donnell's home, for a rally to Ballyglass pier on the Mullet peninsula in support of 'the Chief' who has been in Castlerea prison since 10th February.

Fri, 12 Mar 2010: Helping out on the River Wandle: A six-week long Environment Agency project to restore a stretch of the River Wandle at Poulter Park gained some extra pairs of hands last week when a group of Carillion workers, enlisted by the London Wildlife Trust, donated a day to help out.

Fri, 12 Mar 2010: Scientific study launched into iconic Welsh fish's life: A major new 1.8m GBP scientific study, the Celtic Sea Trout Project, has been launched by Elin Jones AM, the Rural Affairs Minister in Bangor, North Wales.

Fri, 12 Mar 2010: British Wildlife Photography Awards 2010: After a successful first year and widely acclaimed photographic exhibition celebrating British wildlife, the BWPA has announced the launch of its second competition, now open for entries.

Thu, 11 Mar 2010: Scotland gets Marine Act: The Marine (Scotland) Act 2010 this week received its Royal Assent. This is the culmination of many years' campaigning by the Scottish Wildlife Trust and a wide coalition of environmental bodies.

Thu, 11 Mar 2010: Will the bluefish tuna be saved?: Delegates from 175 countries are debating plans to restrict the bluefin tuna trade in a last-ditch attempt to save the species.

Thu, 11 Mar 2010: England's lost and threatened species: Natural England has launched the most complete audit of hundreds of years of England's wildlife winners and losers to an audience of leading conservationists at the Zoological Society of London. Farming has been blamed for much of the damage.

Sun, 7 Mar 2010: Water voles to get a boost in Ceredigion: Moves are underfoot to reverse a decline in water voles near Aberystwyth.

Sun, 7 Mar 2010: Call for world's largest marine reserve: According to RSPB, more than 275,000 people and leading scientific and conservation organisations from the UK and around the world have called on the UK government to establish a protected area in the British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT), which is comprised of the Chagos Islands and its surrounding waters.

Sat, 6 Mar 2010: A trip along the Syr Darya: The BBC takes us on a photo journey along Central Asia's longest river.

Sat, 6 Mar 2010: Could rivers power nearly a million homes?: The Environment Agency is heralding a return to waterpower, but anglers (or, at least, the Anglers Trust) aren't convinced it's the way to go.

Fri, 5 Mar 2010: 90th birthday on a white-water raft: Forget the polite lunch with the family, Gene Hodsdon had better plans!

Sat, 6 Mar 2010: More evidence for human climate change: Climate scientists have presented a new barrage of evidence to confound their doubters.

Fri, 5 Mar 2010: Help your garden spring to life: Now is the ideal time to look at ways in which we can all help wildlife recover from the harshness of Britain's long, cold winter. Gardening in a wildlife-friendly way can considerably increase the diversity of plants and animals and create an oasis for species in decline such as hedgehogs, holly blue butterflies, song thrushes, bumble bees and stag beetles. Natural England's innovative Big Wildlife Garden website is the perfect place to get advice on how to invite wildlife into even the most humble garden this spring.

Fri, 5 Mar 2010: Tackling the pressure on water: The Environment Agency has set out plans to help secure future water supplies and a healthy water environment in England and Wales. Water resources are already under pressure in many parts of England and Wales. In England, some 25 million people live in areas where there is less water available per person than Spain or Morocco. The average person in England and Wales currently uses 148 litres (260 pints) every day.

Thu, 4 Mar 2010: Brown trout thrive at Buxton: Thanks to a new sewage treatment works at Buxton, the River Wye between Buxton and Rowsley now contains more brown trout than virtually any other part of the Trent or its tributaries.

Thu, 4 Mar 2010: Grocery waste sent packing: Grocery manufacturers and retailers have agreed to make significant cuts to food and packaging waste that could save customers and the industry GBP1 billion and cut carbon emissions by three million tonnes, Environment Secretary Hilary Benn has announced..

Wed, 3 Mar 2010: Cleaning the Thames: The Guardian has a short photo feature on this week's Thames 21 cleanup.

Wed, 3 Mar 2010: Buglife celebrates the end of wildlife-destroying sheep dip: Buglife is delighted that finally the Government and manufacturers of Cypermethrin sheep dip have today announced the withdrawal of all relevant product permissions. Synthetic pyrethroids (Cypermethrin) were 1000 times more toxic to wildlife than the pesticides that farmers were previously using to dip sheep. When it was in use it was estimated that about 1.5 billion animals in rivers, streams and ponds were being killed by Cypermethrin sheep dip every year. In addition 400 million litres of waste Cypermethrin was sprayed onto meadows and fields every year, causing untold destruction to butterflies and bees.

Wed, 3 Mar 2010: SAS's Annual Spring Beach Clean: To welcome spring, Surfers Against Sewage have been organising beach cleans around the UK. At Porthtowan in Cornwall there were over 80 volunteers collecting over 150 bags with a weight of 220kgs.

February 2010

Sun, 28 Feb 2010: UK river events for March 2010: The river community is waking up once more, with loads of talks, walks, cleanups, and courses for you to enjoy. Don't forget the World Pooh Stick Championships at the end of the month.

Sun, 28 Feb 2010: Italy: Environmental catastrophe hits the Po: A deliberate spill of diesel oil into Italy's longest river threatens major environmental destruction.

Sun, 28 Feb 2010: Kenya: At the watering hole: A preview of fantastic wildlife photos by Greg du Toit, taken at a watering hole in the Great Rift Valley.

Thu, 25 Feb 2010: New life for Lancs rivers?: According to United Utilities: "Two rivers in east Lancashire flowing through Blackburn and Darwen are to undergo a multi-million clean-up breathing new life into them. United Utilities is currently submitting planning applications for the work, due to start in May and lasting five years which involves building a number of new underground storage tanks and upgraded miles of sewer pipes across the borough. The rivers Blakewater and Darwen, will be transformed and see new habitats for wildlife and significant environmental improvements to the Fylde Coast bathing water. Shellfish beds located within the Ribble Estuary will also benefit as both rivers eventually makes their way out to sea."

Thu, 25 Feb 2010: Smith: UK industry should develop new technologies to flood-proof homes: UK industry should develop more products to help builders and property owners make the 5.5 million properties at flood risk in England and Wales more resistant and resilient to flooding, Environment Agency Chairman Lord Chris Smith has said.

Thu, 25 Feb 2010: Spiny eels go live: The National History Museum has published the first images of four new spiny eels from Myanmar and India, which were identified by ichthyologist (fish expert) Dr Ralf Britz last month.

Wed, 24 Feb 2010: Smith: Farming must adapt to changing climes: GM crops and new technologies to support 'precision farming' could both have a role to play in helping the UK cope with climate change, Environment Agency Chairman Lord Smith has told the National Farmers Union.

Wed, 24 Feb 2010: Is your pond a threat to wildlife?: Aquatic plants, imported from overseas and sold for use in gardens and ponds, can spread into wild areas where they don’t occur naturally and wreak havoc, threatening some of our most precious wildlife sites across the UK, including many nature reserves.

Wed, 24 Feb 2010: River Derwent gravel removal begins: Work has begun on removing thousands of tons of gravel deposited in the Derwent during last November's floods.

Wed, 24 Feb 2010: Latest from the Shell to Shore campaign: Last week in Castlebar circuit court, appeals involving Shell to Sea campaigners were concluded or deferred, with no further prison sentences being handed out. This follows the jailing on Wednesday of local fisherman Pat O'Donnell, who was sentenced to 7 months in jail for convictions of 'breach of the peace' and of 'obstructing a Garda'.

Mon, 22 Feb 2010: India risks new dam battle with Pakistan: India is beginning preparations for a huge dam on the River Chenab, which runs through Jammu and Kashmir state into Pakistan.

Sun, 21 Feb 2010: Goole renaissance plan launched: A public exhibition of a major redevelopment of the Humberside port runs until 11 March.

Sun, 21 Feb 2010: Brighton's urban shepherd: Sam Baldock is grazing Sussex chalk grassland on the very edges of Brighton.

Sun, 21 Feb 2010: How do you feed a piranha?: Very carefully, and with gloves and long-handled pincers, according to Newquay's Blue Reef Aquarium.

Sat, 20 Feb 2010: Battle of the Asian carp: American rivers are gearing up in the battle to fight invasive Asian carp, but opinions are divided on how to fight the fish.

Sat, 20 Feb 2010: Environment Agency investigates grey fungus outbreak in River Crane: Environment Agency officers have been out investigating the cause of the fungus and have taken a number of samples and water quality readings from the river. Officers have identified the outbreak as a grey fungus, which grows on the river bed when the right nutrients are there to feed it.

Sat, 20 Feb 2010: Cleaning up after world trade: How can we make corporations absorb the cost of the environmental damage they do?

Sun, 21 Feb 2010: Thames Water successfully appeals against Wandle pollution: The unfortunate water company has had its GBP125,000 fine more than halved after a High Court appeal.

Sun, 21 Feb 2010: New report reveals the ups and downs of Britain's waterbirds: Each winter Britain sees the arrival of millions of waterbirds of many different species from the Arctic and northern Europe. A new report (Waterbirds in the UK 2007/08) highlights some startling changes in the fortunes of these visitors over the last decade.

Sun, 21 Feb 2010: UK premiere of Dirty Oil: WWF is inviting us to attend the UK premiere of the much anticipated film Dirty Oil. It's a powerful documentary about the devastating impact of tar sands developments on the environment and local communities in Alberta, Canada and the implications for the world as a whole.

Mon, 15 Feb 2010: Ocean acidity highest for tens of millions of years: Soaring ocean acidity, apparently caused by climate change, is a huge concern.

Mon, 15 Feb 2010: Environment Agency outlines flood investment plans: The Environment Agency has announced how over £745m of Defra, Welsh Assembly Government, Local Authority and European Union funding will be allocated to reduce the risk of flood and coastal erosion in England and Wales for the year to March 2011.

Fri, 12 Feb 2010: World's smallest eel-loach discovered: The world's smallest species of eel-loach fish has been discovered by a Natural History Museum scientist and his colleague this month and is featured on the Museum's Species of the day.

Thu, 11 Feb 2010: RSPB: Barrage would be a disaster for the Severn: Increased flooding is just one of the disastrous effects a barrage across the Severn Estuary could cause. An official Dutch report obtained by the RSPB details the flood risk as well as the devastating impacts for wildlife, fishing, tourism and shipping from the construction of a storm surge barrier across the Oosterschelde estuary in the 1980s.

Thu, 11 Feb 2010: Britain is getting tidier new research shows: New figures from Keep Britain Tidy show some improvement in the amount of litter found in Britain's streets, parks and public spaces but there is still more work to do. The Local Environmental Quality Survey England (LEQSE), funded by Defra, showed that in the last year the number of sites where non-alcoholic drinks cans and bottles were found was down from 57% of areas surveyed to 51%, with small decreases in the number of sites with cigarette ends, fast food litter, broken glass and discarded food.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010: World heading towards an oil crunch on par with financial crisis: A new warning by the UK Industry Taskforce on Peak Oil and Energy Security (ITPOES) suggests the the world could be heading towards an "oil crunch" that will match the financial crisis within five years,

Wed, 10 Feb 2010: National Trust encourages us to take to our heels: More than 250,000 downloadable walking guides, almost one every two minutes, were downloaded from the National Trust website in the last year.

Wed, 10 Feb 2010: Recreational water users included in the Scottish Marine Bill: Clean water campaigners Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) are celebrating the Scottish Government recognising recreational water users' need for a voice on Regional Planning Partnerships within the Scottish Marine Bill after another SAS action at Holyrood!

Sun, 7 Feb 2010: Legal push to save eels: New laws could help eels survive by forcing the construction of eel passes and screens in rivers.

Sun, 7 Feb 2010: Snap the splendour of the seas!: Corals, kelp, corkwing wrasse and a kaleidoscope of underwater creatures are calling for their close-up, and entrants to the annual British Society of Underwater Photographers (BSoUP) print competition need to focus as the competition closes on Monday 22 February. The Wildlife Trusts will judge entries in the British and Irish category which has a "Living Seas" theme.

Mon, 8 Feb 2010: Twice as many Welsh get free flood warnings: The number of people entitled to free flood warnings will rise from 47,000 to 90,000 in a bid to cut flood damage.

Mon, 8 Feb 2010: Butterflies prefer hills: Hilly areas with a mixture of habitats are generally better for butterflies, new research has found.

Sun, 7 Feb 2010: Anglers help monitor stocks in the Tyne: The Environment Agency is calling on anglers to help collect scales from salmon and sea trout to assess the health of fish in the River Tyne.

Thu, 4 Feb 2010: Britain's wildlife ponds are in a 'terrible state': A report published by the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology and Pond Conservation shows that 80% of ponds in England and Wales are in a 'poor' or 'very poor' condition.

Thu, 4 Feb 2010: Studying flooding: The Environment Agency shows off its huge new flood test tank to Guardian correspondent Alok Jha. Read more from the Environment Agency.

Wed, 3 Feb 2010: Government publishes UK Marine Science Strategy:The Government has today published a 15 year strategy to deliver world class marine science which will inform decisions on food and energy security, managing the seas sustainably and climate change. Key features include understanding how the marine ecosystem functions; responding to climate change and its interaction with the marine environment; and sustaining and increasing ecosystem benefits.

Wed, 3 Feb 2010: Cornish flood meadow restoration a success for wildlife: A variety of wildlife including otter, kingfisher, lapwing and curlew have benefited from a habitat restoration project on the Camel estuary in Cornwall.

Tue, 2 Feb 2010: Help raise funds for bugs!: Do a fun run, hold a cake-bake, do a sponsored skip, run a half-marathon! This is the International Year of Biodiversity and as we celebrate wildlife across the UK, Buglife is asking us to do something fun, sporty, creative or just plain silly to help conserve bugs.

Tue, 2 Feb 2010: Don't pull the plug on world's wetlands: World Wetlands Day highlights the bonds between wetlands, biodiversity and climate change. "Caring for wetlands is part of the solution to climate change", said Melanie Heath, Senior Advisor on Climate Change at BirdLife. "If we manage them well, wetland ecosystems and their biodiversity have a vital role to play in mitigating against, and adapting to, climate change".

January 2010

Thu, 28 Jan 2010: Celebs and architects launch competition to design Heathrow fortress: Britain's leading architects are being invited by Greenpeace to enter a competition to design an impenetrable fortress to be built on the land earmarked for a third runway at Heathrow. The fortress will be constructed at the centre of the site in west London where airport operator BAA hopes to construct a £7bn runway and sixth terminal.

Mon, 1 Feb 2010: Shops must now collect batteries for recycling: Good news for polluted waterways: shops selling more than a certain number of batteries each year will now be obliged to collect old ones for recycling. Hopefully that means a bit less mercury, cadmium, and all the rest leaching into the ground.

Mon, 1 Feb 2010: Supermarket fridges: another eco-nightmare: The Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) has helpfully pointed out another whopping eco mistake: in switching fridges and freezers away from ozone-depleting chemicals, we introduced new refrigerant gases with thousands of times more global warming impact per tonne than carbon dioxide.

Mon, 1 Feb 2010: How water shapes the Great Rift Valley: Seven more days to watch this great BBC programme on the iPlayer: "The Great Rift Valley channels a huge diversity of waterways--rivers, lakes, waterfalls, caustic springs and coral seas--spanning from Egypt to Mozambique. Some lake and ocean deeps harbour previously unseen life-forms, while caustic waters challenge life to the extreme. But where volcanic minerals enrich the Great Rift's waterways, they provide the most spectacular concentrations of birds, mammals and fish in all Africa".

Sun, 31 Jan 2010: Cruising the rivers of Europe: If you like appreciating your rivers the relaxed way, this review of European river cruises might interest you. It comes from the Brisbane Times (Australians can't get enough of European rivers, apparently).

Fri, 29 Jan 2010: New plan to improve Anglian water quality: A new plan to improve water quality in rivers, lakes, coastal waters and groundwater in the East of England has been launched by the Environment Agency.

Fri, 29 Jan 2010: Fishy boost for the River Leadon: The Environment Agency has just completed work on the River Leadon at Ledbury to help fish, such as salmon and trout, migrate up the river to reproduce.

Thu, 28 Jan 2010: Rare caddis fly larva found on the Isle of Wight: A rare caddis fly larva has been found in Horringford on the Eastern Yar. Caddis fly larvae have never been found on the island before.

Thu, 28 Jan 2010: Only four per cent of imported biofuels are environmentally sustainable: Friends of the Earth comment on a new report published by the Renewable Fuels Agency (RFA), which shows just four per cent of biofuel imported for use in the UK meets the environmental sustainability standard set by the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RFTO).

Thu, 28 Jan 2010: Young wildlife enthusiasts recognised: A group of young naturalists has received a special award from The Wildlife Trusts. Paxton Pits has been named Watch Group of the Year 2009. Wildlife Watch is The Wildlife Trusts' branch for junior members, and the Watch Group of the Year Award aims to recognise and celebrate the activity of Wildlife Watch groups across the UK.

Tue, 26 Jan 2010: Are you Britain's most wildlife friendly farmer?: There's one month to go to get nominations in for this year's Nature of Farming Award. The award aims to find the farmer who has put in the most work for nature on their land and is supported by the RSPB, Butterfly Conservation, Plantlife and BBC Countryfile Magazine.

Mon, 25 Jan 2010: Climate science in crisis?: The BBC's Roger Harrabin looks at recent allegations of dodgy science fuelled by climate sceptics.

Mon, 25 Jan 2010: Georgina takes pesticide protest to Europe: The rollercoaster-ride of Georgina Downs' campaign against pesticides is set to continue in Europe.

Mon, 25 Jan 2010: Fish numbers in River Culm set to rise thanks to new fish pass: Using the latest technology, the Environment Agency is building a series special structures to help salmon, sea trout, eels and lamprey gain access to the upper reaches of Culm. Until recently fish were unable to swim beyond Silverton Paper Mill where a large weir prevented them from heading upstream. The new £180,000 fish pass will remove this major obstacle and open up new stretches of the river to migratory species.

Fri, 22 Jan 2010: Funding opportunity for wild fishing in Wales!: More people are set to enjoy wild fishing by having better access to a network of river fishing beats and still waters as Environment Agency Wales launches its second round of funding for Wild Fishing Wales.

Thu, 21 Jan 2010: Water Companies Appealing? Appalling!: Clean water campaigners Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) were on hand to greet water company executives with the walk of shame as they entered an appeal hearing today. 6 water companies are trying to defend the indefensible, by appealing against designated discharge consents for 4,000 combined sewer overflows (CSOs). SAS were armed with a giant 6ft by 4ft photo of a CSO clogged full of sanitary towels, condoms, cotton buds sticks and more. The appeal is expected to last for 4 days.

Fri, 22 Jan 2010: Eels are vanishing from the River Thames: Eel populations in the River Thames have crashed to alarmingly low levels, conservationists have revealed. Over the last five years Zoological Society of London scientists have recorded a 98 per cent drop in the number of European eels returning to the River Thames.

Wed, 20 Jan 2010: Wildlife sites threatened by planning shake-up for ports: A shake-up of the way ports are planned in the UK could threaten some of the country's best wildlife sites. RSPB is urging the Transport Select Committee not to support proposed rules that would sacrifice the environment in a rush to build new ports the country does not need.

Tue, 19 Jan 2010: Wildlife Trusts: Give seas a chance!: Living Seas, The Wildlife Trusts' vision for the UK's marine environment (where wildlife thrives from the depths of the ocean to the coastal shallows; where rocky reefs are bursting with brightly coloured fish, corals and sponges, and dolphins and seals dart among the waves) has been launched in the House of Commons.

Tue, 19 Jan 2010: More otters head for Wales: Otters are on the up in and around Wrexham and the north of Wales.

Mon, 18 Jan 2010: Boost for Dorset Stour Barbel Populations: A partnership project between the Environment Agency, the Barbel Society and local angling clubs is helping boost barbel numbers on the Dorset Stour, which have been relatively low for a number of years.

Mon, 18 Jan 2010: Wales rivers in line for major cleanup: Environment Agency Wales and the Welsh Assembly Government have announced their intention to improve all waterways by 2015 and get them to "near natural" condition by 2027.

Sat, 16 Jan 2010: Climate change means a whole new way of life: We need a complete rethink of consumption culture argues Jonathan Owen.

Fri, 15 Jan 2010: Cities could be reinvented by climate change: A positive spin on rising seas suggests coastal cities like Portsmouth could use climate change as an opportunity for reinvention.

Fri, 15 Jan 2010: Oil spill natural disaster narrowly avoided in snow: Natural disaster was narrowly avoided during the recent artic conditions after a lorry crashed on M20, spilling more than 600 litres of diesel into local waterways.

Thu, 14 Jan 2010: Ten species to watch in 2010: WWF offers its countdown of world species in urgent need of protection during the UN's official Year of Biodiversity.

Tue, 12 Jan 2010: Reservoir safety to be improved: The safety of communities near large reservoirs would be improved under plans just set out by Defra, which would require owners or operators of all large reservoirs to produce a detailed flood plan.

Tue, 12 Jan 2010: Lundy is first marine conservation zone: Lundy Island, one of England's most spectacular marine habitats, has today become England’s first Marine Conservation Zone (MCZ). Its new status establishes it as the first example of the new approach to marine protection being taken under the Marine and Coastal Access Act, which will contribute towards the creation of the network of ecologically coherent and well-managed marine protected areas by 2012.

Mon, 11 Jan 2010: Seven foot sea-level rise?: Just what are the implications of accelerated melting of the Greenland and West Antarctic ice sheets?

Mon, 11 Jan 2010: India: Celebrating the world's biggest river festival: Millions of people will flock to the Ganges for this year's month-long celebration. Enjoy these pictures from the BBC.

Mon, 11 Jan 2010: International Year of Biodiversity 2010: Let's hope it puts some much-needed focus on the planet's dwindling habitats and species.

Sun, 10 Jan 2010: Are nuclear health fears misplaced?: Retired Oxford physicist Wade Allison is challenging a consensus of conventional fears about the safety of nuclear power.

Tue, 5 Jan 2010: Amazon's giant Arapaima river fish faces extinction: Another remarkable river species, which can grows to be longer and heavier than a person, is at risk from overfishing.

Tue, 5 Jan 2010: Pollution warning over China's yellow river: A broken oil pipe in northern China threatens water supplies for millions.

Tue, 5 Jan 2010: Anti-mining activist murdered in El Salvador: It's sobering for British environmental campaigners to read about the risks activists run in other countries. On 26th December, Dora Alicia Recinos Sorto was murdered in the Cabanas Region of El Salvador, where protests continue against a reopened gold mine.

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