Another Planet

The UK is issuing a set of ten stamps to celbrate the work of the WWF – each stamp features the face of an endangeerd species including the Siberian Tigers, Mountain Gorilla, African Elephant, Amur Leopard and the Golden Lion Tamarind. Those depicting elephans and tigers will be ‘intelligent’ stamps and will enable smartphone users to link to WWF video footage with commentary from actress Miranda Richardson.

The Tanzanian Government’s plans to build a two lane highway accross the Serengeti, one of the World’s most important wildlife reserves which would cross the route of the massive wilderbeest migration every year, is facing increasing criticism. The German Government has said that it will put funding into a more envornmentally friendly route, bypassing the Serengeti.  Proponents of the scheme say that they will take steps to protect wildlife, and that the road is vital for economic growth. 27 wildlife experts have written to the Tanzanian Government urging it to reconsider the road and critics have pointed out that the Serengeti is the biggest carbon sink on the planet.  

The UK Government faces criticism over plans to cut subsidies for solar power by 75%. with critics saying that the plans will kill of all large scale projects – but the Government says the action is necessary as the ‘Feed In Tariff’ had been hijacked by big busines and that changes would only affect larger projects, and that subsidies of schemes up to 50KW would remain the same and Greg Barker, the climate change minister, said changes were needed to stop large schemes ‘soaking up’ all the cash.

Energy policy changes introduced in the new UK budget will push up the carbon price floor from £16 per tonne of CO2 to £30 per tonne by 2020 – this will heap costs onto energy intensive manufacturers such as glass, steel and paper but hopefully will push forward energy efficiencies. Critics say that the scheme makes European industries less competitive with countries that have no carbon tax levied via a carbon trading scheme, and consumer groups have said that energy companies will undoubtedly put up their bills to consumers – with Consumer Focuss aying that a better approach for cash strapped huseholds would be to abandon a carbon floor price and concentrate on helping people save energy by promoting and funding energy efficiency.

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