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42% of Honeybees Died Last Year
Honeybee mortality has taken a sharp rise over the past year. Beekeepers report 42.1 percent of their bees died in the year ending in April, a significant rise over the already high rates seen in recent years, and several times historic rates of around 10 percent. Moreover, bee deaths peaked in summer for the first time since records have been kept. The New York Times has the troubling news, complete with the remarkable spin one Bayer scientist tried to put on the report: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/14/us/honeybees-mysterious-die-off-appears-to-worsen.html?_r=0

Bill in Legislature Could Hamstring Environmental Safeguards
Oregon House Bill 3212, if passed, looks to create a huge new hurdle for any regulations on agriculture, from environmental safeguards to animal welfare protections. The bill seeks to make any law or regulation on agriculture a “land use regulation” under Oregon’s Measure 49. This would mean farmers would have to be compensated for any reduced land value stemming from both new and existing rules. The Statesman Journal examines the sweeping implications: http://www.statesmanjournal.com/story/tech/science/environment/2015/05/14/oregon-bill-roll-back-environmental-regulations/27276389/

Crevasses Now Riddle Greenland’s Stretching Glaciers
The glaciers in Greenland are developing what scientists are calling “stretch marks” as they plunge ever faster toward the sea. In a mute testimony to the ever increasing rate at which ice is being lost from polar regions, aerial views show the sheets of ice riddled with the labyrinthine crevasses. Slate has the story: http://www.slate.com/blogs/future_tense/2015/05/13/crevasses_on_greenland_glaciers_are_evidence_of_the_increasing_rate_of_ice.html

16% of Species Face Extinction Because of Carbon Emissions
A new meta-study, which analyzes the results of a number of other studies, has come to the conclusion that sixteen percent of the planet’s species are at risk of extinction from climate change. The new data comes from aggregating studies of individual species and ecosystems to arrive at what is characterized as a more accurate estimate of the probable risks. The whopping 16% number foreshadows massive ecological changes for the world, if prompt action isn’t taken. Ars Technica has the details: http://arstechnica.com/science/2015/05/carbon-emissions-put-sixteen-percent-of-species-at-risk-of-extinction/