Plans for coal-fired power plants drop by almost half in 2016. Image copyright Getty Images Twenty-sixteen saw a "dramatic" decline in the number of coal-fired power stations in pre-construction globally.
The authors of a new study say there was a 48% fall in planned coal units, with a 62% drop in construction starts. The report, from several green campaign groups, claims changing policies and economic conditions in China and India were behind the decline. However, the coal industry argues the fuel will remain essential to economic growth in Asia for decades to come.
Between 2006 and 2016, India and China together accounted for 85% of the coal plants built around the world. But according to the Boom and Bust 2017 report, put together by Greenpeace, the Sierra Club and CoalSwarm, there has been a huge swing away from coal in these two countries in just 12 months. North Korea hunger: Two in five undernourished, says UN. Image copyright Getty Images Two in five North Koreans are undernourished and more than 70% of the population relies on food aid, the United Nations says.
In a new report, it said most North Koreans also lacked access to basic healthcare or sanitation. Diarrhoea and pneumonia are the two main causes of death for children under five, the report said. Humanitarian needs had been exacerbated by "recurrent natural hazards", such as frequent floods and drought. "Amidst political tensions, an estimated 18 million people across DPRK [North Korea] continue to suffer from food insecurity and undernutrition, as well as a lack of access to basic services," the UN report said. Superbugs which pose greatest threat to humanity identified by World Health Organisation Fifth of world's food lost to over-eating and waste.
Malaria drugs fail for first time on patients in UK. Image copyright Spl A key malaria treatment has failed for the first time in patients being treated in the UK, doctors say.
The drug combination was unable to cure four patients, who had all visited Africa, in early signs the parasite is evolving resistance. A team at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine said it was too early to panic. But it warned things could suddenly get worse and demanded an urgent appraisal of drug-resistance levels in Africa. Scotland sets 50% renewable energy target. Image copyright Getty Images Half of Scotland's heat, transport and electricity energy needs will be met by renewables by 2030 under plans published by the Scottish government.
The draft Scottish Energy Strategy sets out a vision for the transition away from oil and gas dependency and towards a low-carbon economy by 2050. Only 13% of Scotland's total final energy consumption came from renewable sources in 2013. Environmental groups had been campaigning for the 50% target. A public consultation on the proposals will run until the end of May. 'Fuel poverty' Last week, the Scottish government set a new target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 66% by 2032. Its energy strategy, which was unveiled by Energy Minister Paul Wheelhouse at Holyrood, includes exploring the "re-powering" of existing power stations, which could see Longannet reopen as a coal-fired station with Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS). In the future, will farming be fully automated? Image copyright CNH Industrial In the not-too-distant future, our fields could be tilled, sown, tended and harvested entirely by fleets of co-operating autonomous machines by land and air.
And they'll be working both day and night. Can Thailand's rice farmers survive low prices? Earthquake sparks Japan tsunami warning. A 6.9 magnitude earthquake off eastern Japan near Fukushima prefecture has prompted a tsunami warning of possible 3m (10ft) waves.
The quake struck on Tuesday morning at about 06:00 local time (21:00 GMT, Monday), the Japan Meteorological Agency said. The depth of the quake was estimated to be around 11km (7 miles). In 2011, a large tsunami caused by a quake destroyed the Fukushima nuclear power plant. Broadcaster NHK said Tokyo Electric Power was checking the plant for damage. Image copyright Reuters There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties but tremors were felt in Tokyo and residents were urged to evacuate some coastal areas. Ships could be seen moving away from the coast of Fukushima prefecture.
What the death of Dory the penguin says about India's zoos. Animals saunter listlessly in grubby enclosures.
A crocodile suns itself in algae-covered water. The cramped birdcages are strangely silent. CO2 levels mark 'new era' in the world's changing climate. Image copyright NASA.
Census shows agricultural workforce falls to record low. Image copyright PA Scotland's agricultural workforce has fallen to its lowest level on record, according to official figures.
The June 2016 farming census found 63,400 people were employed on agricultural holdings. That was 1,900, or 3%, fewer than the previous year and the lowest figure since current records began in 1982. Scotland's chief statistician largely attributed the fall to a drop in the number of working occupiers, which fell by 1,200, or 3.3%. Working occupiers made up 58% of total workers, with regular staff accounting for 32%.
Geography AS Notes.