Jump to Navigation
Jump to Content

International Update Volume 42, Issue 4

QUESTIONS RAISED OVER BRAZILIAN OFFSHORE DRILLING

Brazil

Though Petrobras appears to have contained Brazil's second major oil spill in four months, the accident has raised questions about offshore drilling's safety as the country moves forward with plans to develop offshore resources. A government team evaluating efforts to contain the spill said that there was virtually no chance the oil would reach the coastline, and that Petrobras' quick response was able to control the spill. However, environmental regulators have questioned the company's emergency plans.

EU SUBSIDY CHANGES MAY CAUSE DESTRUCTION OF GRASSLANDS

EU

Wildlife-rich English grasslands are at risk of being ploughed so that farmers can continue to claim EU subsidies for pastures, experts have warned. To escape penalties under proposed changes to the common agricultural policy, farmers are mowing down high-value grasslands to register permanent pastures ahead of a 2014 deadline. Though many of the grasslands are monocultures with limited natural value, an estimated 100,000 hectares remain that are rich in plants, fungi, bees, moths, and butterflies.

INDIA HAS WORST AIR IN THE WORLD

India

India's air quality is worst in the world for its effect on human health, according to a recent study from Yale and Columbia universities, measuring 3.73 out of a possible 100 points. The study, which used satellite data to measure air pollution concentrations, found that the fine particulate matter level in India is nearly five times the limit at which it becomes unsafe for humans.