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REUTERS/Jumana ElHeloueh

12 Sep 2012

Overview: renewable energy initiatives under Obama administration

The bankruptcy of Solyndra, a solar panel manufacture that received $528 million in 2009 under the ARRA lending program to promote clean energy, has become an embarrassment to the Obama Administration.

A rare Shepherd's beaked whale spotted at Bass Strait, off the town of Portland, is seen in this handout photo taken January 16, 2012 and distributed to Reuters. by the Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) on February 24, 2012. Up to a dozen of these black and cream-coloured whales with dolphin-like beaks were spotted by AAD researchers last month, who were tracking blue whales off the coast of Portland. There have only been two confirmed sightings of these reclusive mammals and this was the first time they have ever been filmed live, according to media reports.Credit: Reuters

11 Sep 2012

U.S. judge rejects whale suit against Navy sub training site

Although North American right whales have been protected from commercial whaling since 1935, their badly depleted population has never recovered and could now number as few as 313, Wood wrote.

Fire boat response crews battle the blazing remnants of the offshore oil rig Deepwater Horizon, off Louisiana, in this April 21, 2010 file Photograph. Hopes BP can settle early out of court on liability for its 2010 U.S. Gulf oil spill looked forlorn on Wednesday after U.S. prosecutors laid out a legal case for gross negligence on which tens of billions of dollars hang. In the two years that have passed since the spewing Macondo deepwater well was capped, the Department of Justice (DoJ) has made it clear BP may have a gross negligence case to answer - implying a potential $21 billion fine on top of other payments, some already made, others yet to be determined.Credit: Reuters

11 Sep 2012

Transocean, U.S. discussing $1.5 bln spill settlement

Transocean owned the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig and BP Plc was the operator of the Macondo well, which ruptured on April 20, 2010, killing 11 workers and unleashing the worst-ever U.S. offshore oil spill. London-based BP is also in talks with the Justice Department to resolve criminal and civil claims.

REUTERS/Sukree Sukplang

11 Sep 2012

Brownfields do not need to be forever: Evansville Indiana Greenway Site – a success story

Even after years of focus and attention on investigating and cleaning up industrial properties for reuse, many more Brownfields remain vacant and underutilized.

A worker uses his walkie-talkie as he walks past a coal pile at a mining site in Berau, in Indonesia's East Kalimantan province, in this August 12, 2010 file photo. The slowdown in China's economic growth is cutting deeper into Indonesia's coal sector, forcing producers to reduce output and slash costs, and testing the resilience of a commodity boom in Southeast Asia's largest economy. The Indonesian Coal Mining Association cut its 2012 production forecast to between 340 million and 350 million tonnes, the second revision this year and 10 percent to 13 percent below its original forecast of 390 million tonnes.Credit: REUTERS

10 Sep 2012

Governor of top Indonesia coal region calls for output cap

Governor Ishak Faroek said East Kalimantan, which produces two-thirds of Indonesia’s coal, would benefit if output was limited to 150 million tonnes, around 30 percent below this year’s expected production.

A pressure gauge is seen at a Ukrainian gas compressor station in the village of Boyarka near the capital Kiev

10 Sep 2012

Fracking for natural gas: a regulatory explosion

As worldwide natural gas production using fracking expands, governments are acting to control both the perceived negative health and environmental consequences as well as maximize the potential economic gains.

Striking platinum mineworkers gather for a report back on negotiations at Lonmin's Marikana mine in South Africa's North West Province, August 29, 2012. Feuding South African unions, Lonmin and government officials tried on Wednesday to broker a peace accord at the mine where 44 people were killed in the worst such violence since the end of apartheid. They also want to use the meeting to start wage talks over the dispute that has paralysed production at Lonmin's Marikana mine and raised worries of unrest spreading through the country's platinum sector, further shaking the economy.Credit: REUTERS

4 Sep 2012

South Africa police fire teargas as mine unrest spreads

South Africa is home to 80 percent of known platinum reserves and the price of the precious metal, used in jewellery and car catalytic converters, has risen more than 10 percent since the violence erupted.

Police escort blindfolded Muslim cleric Khalid Jadoon as he is brought before a judge at a court in Islamabad September 2, 2012. Pakistani authorities have arrested Jadoon on suspicion of framing Christian girl Rimsha Masih who was arrested under the country's controversial anti-blasphemy law, a police official said on Sunday.Credit: REUTERS

3 Sep 2012

Imam arrested in Pakistan blasphemy case, stirring tensions

Under Muslim Pakistan’s anti-blasphemy law, the mere allegation of causing offence to Islam can mean death. Those accused are sometimes killed by members of the public even if they are found innocent by the courts.

An oil well operates in Chauk, home to one of the longest producing oil fields in the world, April 1, 2012. Despite the rich natural resources in the area, villages near Chauk do not receive public electricity but must depend on limited funds to keep the lights on at night. Picture taken April 1, 2012. To match Insight MYANMAR-ENERGY.Credit: Reuters

31 Aug 2012

Steeped in poverty, Myanmar targets natural resources

Only two countries had public sectors more corrupt than Myanmar’s in 2011, according to Transparency International: economic basket case North Korea and war-torn Somalia.

Scales of Justice are seen in Brittany's Parliament in Rennes. REUTERS/Stephane Mahe

31 Aug 2012

Australian detention centres risk violating human rights

Australia’s recent decision to move asylum seekers to offshore detention facilities has alarmed human rights organisations.

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