Ecosystem

January 23, 2014
Arable land contaminated with heavy metals will be withdrawn from agricultural production, a senior Chinese agricultural official said yesterday.
Stormy weather in Northeast Asia
January 22, 2014
Extreme air pollution in Asia is affecting weather and climate patterns, according to a new study. Using climate models and data collected about aerosols and meteorology data from the last 30 years, the researchers found that air pollution over Asia – much of it coming from China – is impacting global air circulations. Winter cyclones in northwestern latitudes including China, Korea and Japan have packed stronger winds and more rain as a result of rising levels of particulate pollution, they said.
January 22, 2014
The municipal legislature of Beijing has passed new regulations on air pollution control that will cap the city's total emissions and impose harsher penalties on worst offending companies.
January 21, 2014
Member countries of the Mekong River Commission (MRC) were unable to reach an agreement last week during a special session to decide whether the Don Sahong Dam should undergo regional decision-making, leaving future regional co-operation on the river in limbo.
January 21, 2014
Asia Pacific Resources International Ltd (APRIL), the second largest pulp and paper company in Indonesia, has been threatened with expulsion from the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) – a coalition of some 200 international companies that claim to be committed to sustainability – unless it can demonstrate that it has ended its role in deforestation.
the_rainforest_standard_for_west_bali_national_park.jpg
January 20, 2014
A new standard to measure carbon for rainforests was launched last week in Bali, Indonesia which designates the island’s forest conservation site as the pilot project for research to develop a carbon credit mechanism. Launched by the Consortium for Rainforest Standards in Indonesia, this landmark initiative is expected to help reduce the loss of Indonesia’s tropical forests and biodiversity, according to a report in the Jakarta Post.
January 20, 2014
Food security, rural environment have been cited by the central government as its top priorities for 2014, according to a document published on the State Council’s website yesterday.
Trans-Pacific Partnership Leak
January 20, 2014
Green groups from around the globe up in arms after WikiLeaks late last week released the secret draft text for the entire TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) Environment Chapter and the corresponding Chairs' Report. The TPP transnational legal regime would cover 12 countries initially and encompass 40 percent of global GDP and one-third of world trade.
January 17, 2014
Bloomberg has obtained an as yet unpublished United Nations report that states the cost of holding global temperatures to 2-degrees Celsius in order to avoid drastic changes in the planet’s climate may cost as much as four percent of economic output by the year 2030.
7 biggest emitters
January 16, 2014
A new study by Canadian researchers from Montreal’s Concordia University pins the majority of blame for global warming square on the shoulders of seven countries: the United States, China, Russia, Brazil, India, Germany and the United Kingdom. The study “National contributions to observed global warming”, published yesterday in the journal Environmental Research Letters, reveals that these countries were collectively responsible for more than 60 percent of pre-2005 global warming.
January 15, 2014
The Korea Exchange has landed the rights to manage South Korea’s emissions trading platform when it launches on Jan. 1, 2015, the Ministry of Environment announced.
January 15, 2014
Japan companies will earn carbon credits by assisting the tiny Pacific island state of Pulau cut its emissions under a new agreement between the two countries.
January 15, 2014
Shanghai devoted a smaller share of its resources and has met a smaller proportion of its goals for environmental protection in the five years from 2008 to 2012, despite growing public dissatisfaction with the city's environment in recent years, the local statistics bureau said yesterday.
January 14, 2014
An Indonesian court has found the palm oil company PT Kallista Alam guilty of illegally burning large swathes of the Tripa peat forest, which lies within Sumatra’s Leuser Ecosystem, the only place on Earth where tigers, elephants, rhinos, and orangutans can be found living together in the wild.
China Wetlands
January 13, 2014
China’s wetlands have shrunk nearly nine percent in the last decade, contributing to the country’s water shortage and putting increased pressure on its food production, energy output and industrial activity.
January 10, 2014
The 2014 target for reducing nitrogen oxide (NOx) emission is China has been set at 5 percent, a level much more aggressive than in previous years, Minister of Environmental Protection Zhou Shengxian said at a national environmental conference on Thursday.
POSCO India protest
January 10, 2014
Korean steel giant Posco appears to have got its plan to build a huge steel plant and port infrastructure in the Indian state of Orissa back on track with the country’s Ministry of Environment and Forests reinstating its environmental clearances. The caveat, however, that the company will have to pay out USD600 million in “social commitments”, raising the total project cost to USD12.6 billion.
January 09, 2014
The Asian Development Bank and China’s Environmental Protection Ministry the will deepen co-operation in seven areas that include efforts to prevent pollution of the air, water and land, according to a Memorandum of Understanding signed on Wednesday.
January 09, 2014
The World Bank will launch a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on climate change which brings together renowned scientists to provide a synthesis of the most recent scientific evidence and presents an analysis of likely impacts and risks, with a focus on developing countries.
Air quality readings across China's cities
January 09, 2014
China’s 31 provinces, antonymous regions and self-governing municipalities have been given firm targets to reduce air pollution by 2017 with cuts of between five and 25 percent depending on location according to a statement from the Ministry of Environmental Protection. The State Council, China’s cabinet, will evaluate each province's progress annually.