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Sierra Magazine: Explore, enjoy and protect the planet.
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UP TO SPEED | Two Months, One Page

Ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica are melting much faster than expected. At this rate, we can expect a sea-level rise of three to five feet by 2100.

King crabs are colonizing warmer Antarctic waters for the first time in 40 million years.

A wrecked ship off Nightingale Island in the South Atlantic spills 1,500 tons of crude oil, endangering the world's largest population of rockhopper penguins.

Canned foods and drinks are a major source of the hormone-disrupting chemical BPA, suggests new research. When study participants switched from cans to a diet of fresh food, their BPA levels dropped by 66 percent.

As part of a deal to continue funding the U.S. government, Congress removes wolves in the northern Rockies from the endangered-species list—the first time it has done so.

The same budget deal also defunds an Obama-administration plan that would have made millions of acres in the West eligible for protection as wilderness.

The United States slips to third in clean-energy spending, behind China and Germany.

Net U.S. greenhouse-gas emissions in 2009 were 14 percent lower than they were in 2000.

In 2010, renewables provided 11 percent of U.S. energy, the same amount as nuclear power.

Since 1900, forests in North America, Europe, the Caucasus, and Central Asia have increased by nearly 100,000 square miles, an area larger than Great Britain.

Cats kill more than a thousand times more birds than do wind turbines.

The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster is upgraded to a 7 on the International Nuclear Events Scale, putting it on par with Chernobyl.

The Tennessee Valley Authority agrees to phase out 18 of 59 units at its coal-fired power plants.

First-quarter profits for the five biggest oil companies were up 38 percent in 2010 over 2009.

Australia's outback is being ravaged by a million feral camels.

The Interior Department opens to mining federal lands in the Powder River Basin, which hold 750 million tons of coal. Coal companies hope to export much of it to Asia.

On the first anniversary of the BP oil disaster, dead and stillborn whales and dolphins continue to wash up on the Gulf Coast at three times the usual rate.

Record prices for gold accelerate deforestation in the Amazon.

Wolverines return to Oregon. They were last seen there in 1986.

NASA launches a $424 million satellite designed to study how atmospheric aerosols affect Earth's climate. Minutes later it crashes into the Pacific—the second NASA "Earth-observing" satellite to do so in two years. —Paul Rauber


 

This article has been corrected.

First column, from top: Tui De Roy/Minden Pictures, iStockphoto/smartstock; second column, from top: iStockphoto/thebroker, iStockphoto/SVLumagraphica



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