David Attenborough Urges World to Cut Plastics to Save Our Oceans
The revered British naturalist demonstrates how the ubiquitous material harms marine life in his new BBC series, Blue Planet II, a sequel to the 2001 documentary "The Blue Planet." One scene even shows an albatross accidentally feeding its young a plastic toothpick—a moment that Attenborough describes as "heartbreaking," as the baby bird is shown dead after the feeding.
"Never before have we been so aware of what we are doing to our planet—and never before have we had such power to do something about it," he wrote. "Surely we have a responsibility to care for the planet on which we live? The future of humanity, and indeed of all life on Earth, now depends on us doing so."
However, Attenborough noted that "all is not yet lost" and is calling on all people to "reduce the amount of plastic that we use in our everyday lives".
"Let us hope that Trump will eventually recognise that the Paris agreement was not about Pittsburgh, or even Paris, but the entire planet," he said.
Attenborough speaks about the scene with the albatross feeding around the 1:30 mark in the video above. He says, "There is a shot of the young being fed and what comes out of the beak of the adult? Not sand eels, not fish, and not squid, which is what they mostly eat, but plastic. It's heartbreaking. Heartbreaking."
The move comes after regional authorities declared a state of emergency over the weekend after sightings of more than 50 bears in the town of Belushya Guba since December.
This year's letter from Bill and Melinda Gates focused on nine things that surprised them. For the Microsoft-cofounder, one thing he was surprised to learn was the massive amount of new buildings the planet should expect in the coming decades due to urban population growth.
"The number of buildings in the world is going to double by 2060. It's like we're going to build a new New York City every month for the next 40 years," he said.
By Shana Udvardy
After a dearth of action on climate change and a record year of extreme events in 2017, the inclusion of climate change policies within the annual legislation Congress considers to outline its defense spending priorities (the National Defense Authorization Act) for fiscal year 2018 was welcome progress. House and Senate leaders pushed to include language that mandated that the Department of Defense (DoD) incorporate climate change in their facility planning (see more on what this section of the bill does here and here) as well as issue a report on the impacts of climate change on military installations. Unfortunately, what DoD produced fell far short of what was mandated.
Trump is losing his rallying cry to save coal. The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) voted on Thursday to retire two coal-fired power plants in the next few years despite a plea from the president to keep one of the plants open.
Earlier this week, the president posted an oddly specific tweet that urged the government-owned utility to save the 49-year-old Paradise 3 plant in Kentucky. It so happens that the facility burns coal supplied by Murray Energy Corporation, whose CEO is Robert Murray, is a major Trump donor.