Jump to Navigation
Jump to Content

International Update Volume 45, Issue 27

SINGAPORE CLOSES SCHOOLS DUE TO AIR POLLUTION

Indonesia, Singapore

On September 25, Singapore closed all primary and secondary schools, as well as kindergartens run by the Ministry of Education, due to high levels of air pollution. The sharp decline in air quality and persistent smog come from Indonesian forest fires. According to the National Environment Agency of Singapore, the three-hour pollutant standards index reached 320 on September 24, exceeding the maximum threshold of 300. The haze from the Indonesian forest fires has already led Singapore to cancel certain outdoor events and change flight schedules this past month.

INDIAN HIGH COURT STAYS ORDER BARRING GREENPEACE FROM ACCEPTING FOREIGN FUNDS

India

On September 17, 2015, the Indian Madras High Court temporarily stayed a demand from the Indian government that prohibited Greenpeace India from accepting foreign funding. Earlier this month, the Indian Ministry of Home Affairs canceled the group's registration under the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act, which allows the organization to receive funds from abroad. Approximately 30% of Greenpeace India’s funds come from foreign sources. The government alleges that Greenpeace India’s financial accounts are riddled with inconsistencies, while Greenpeace India denies the claims.

MALTA REFERRED TO TOP EU COURT DUE TO FINCH TRAPPING TRADITION

Malta

On September 24, 2015, the European Commission referred Malta to the European Union’s top court because of its annual spring hunt of finches. These birds cross Malta’s territory during their spring migration across the Mediterranean from Africa to their breeding grounds in Europe. Hunting birds in the spring is prohibited in the EU, but Malta requests an exemption each year. This past April, voters in Malta passed a referendum that supported the continuation of spring hunts.