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Portal:Environment

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Welcome to the Environment Portal
(image link)

Introduction

Land management has preserved the natural characteristics of Hopetoun Falls, Australia while allowing ample access for visitors.

The natural environment or natural world encompasses all living and non-living things occurring naturally, meaning in this case not artificial. The term is most often applied to the Earth or some parts of Earth. This environment encompasses the interaction of all living species, climate, weather and natural resources that affect human survival and economic activity. The concept of the natural environment can be distinguished as components:

In contrast to the natural environment is the built environment. Built environments are where humans have fundamentally transformed landscapes such as urban settings and agricultural land conversion, the natural environment is greatly changed into a simplified human environment. Even acts which seem less extreme, such as building a mud hut or a photovoltaic system in the desert, the modified environment becomes an artificial one. Though many animals build things to provide a better environment for themselves, they are not human, hence beaver dams, and the works of mound-building termites, are thought of as natural. (Full article...)

A biophysical environment is a biotic and abiotic surrounding of an organism or population, and consequently includes the factors that have an influence in their survival, development, and evolution. A biophysical environment can vary in scale from microscopic to global in extent. It can also be subdivided according to its attributes. Examples include the marine environment, the atmospheric environment and the terrestrial environment. The number of biophysical environments is countless, given that each living organism has its own environment.

The term environment can refer to a singular global environment in relation to humanity, or a local biophysical environment, e.g. the UK's Environment Agency. (Full article...)

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Tesla Model 3 electric car (1.3 million)(1)

A plug-in electric vehicle (PEV), also known as new energy vehicle (NEV) in China, is any road vehicle that can utilize an external source of electricity (such as a wall socket that connects to the power grid) to store electrical power within its onboard rechargeable battery packs, which then powers the electric motor and contributes to propelling the wheels. PEV is a subset of electric vehicles, and includes all-electric/battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs). Sales of the first series production plug-in cars began in December 2008 with the introduction of the plug-in hybrid BYD F3DM, and then with the all-electric Mitsubishi i-MiEV in July 2009, but global retail sales only gained traction after the introduction of the mass production all-electric Nissan Leaf and the plug-in hybrid Chevrolet Volt in December 2010.

Plug-in electric cars have several benefits compared to conventional internal combustion engine vehicles. All-electric vehicles have lower operating and maintenance costs, and produce little or no local air pollution, thus (depending on the electricity source) reducing societal dependence on fossil fuels and significantly decreasing greenhouse gas emissions, but take time to recharge and are heavily reliant on sufficient charging infrastructures to remain operationally practical. Plug-in hybrids provide most of electric cars' benefits when they are operating in all-electric mode, though typically having shorter all-electric ranges, but have the auxiliary option of driving as a conventional hybrid vehicle when the battery is low, using its internal combustion engine (usually a gasoline engine) to alleviate the range anxiety that accompanies current electric cars. (Full article...)
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Power County wind farm, Idaho, USA
Credit: ENERGY.GOV

Wind Power is the conversion of wind energy into more useful forms, usually electricity, using wind turbines. The energy is generated in the form of electricity by converting the rotation of turbine blades into electrical current by means of an electrical generator. Wind power is used in large scale wind farms for national electrical grids as well as in small individual turbines for providing electricity to rural residences or grid-isolated locations.

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Sumaira Abdulali in 2012.jpg

Sumaira Abdulali (born 22 May 1961) is an environmentalist from Mumbai, India, founder of the NGO Awaaz Foundation and convenor of the Movement against Intimidation, Threat and Revenge against Activists (MITRA). She was co-chairman of the Conservation Subcommittee and honorary secretary of Asia's oldest and largest environmental NGO, the Bombay Natural History Society, and is currently a Governing Council Member.

Through legal interventions, advocacy and public campaigns, contribution to documentary films, television debates and press articles she has successfully mainstreamed and built consciousness about previously unknown environmental hazards, notably noise pollution and sand mining, and has won national and International awards for her work. She also set up the first network for protection of activists in India after an attack on her by the sand mafia is 2004. (Full article...)

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Photograph of Gro Harlem Brundtland.
Gro Harlem Brundtland, first head of the commission.

The Brundtland Commission, formerly the World Commission on Environment and Development, was a sub-organization of the United Nations (UN) that aimed to unite countries in pursuit of sustainable development. It was founded in 1983 when Javier Pérez de Cuéllar, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, appointed Gro Harlem Brundtland, former Prime Minister of Norway, as chairperson of the commission. Brundtland was chosen due to her strong background in the sciences and public health.

The Brundtland Commission officially dissolved in 1987 after releasing Our Common Future, also known as the Brundtland Report. The document popularized the term "sustainable development" and won the Grawemeyer Award in 1991. In 1988, the Center for Our Common Future replaced the commission. (Full article...)
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Jacques-Yves Cousteau
Water and air, the two essential fluids on which all life depends, have become global garbage cans.

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  • ...that chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) can cause ozone depletion, and the ozone hole needs to take more than a decade to recover?

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