Tuvalu struggles to hold back tide: The fragile strips of green that make up the small islands of Tuvalu are incredibly beautiful but also incredibly vulnerable. The group of nine tiny islands in the South Pacific only just break the surface of the ocean – but for how much longer? During a King Tide, which is what the islanders call the highest tides of the year, waves rolling off the ocean can have a devastating effect. The islands’ main road is submerged and nearby homes are threatened by the rising waters. “We have never seen this in the past,” a concerned resident tells me. “We have never seen water coming in this far.” BBC

No place to hide: Skeptics about global warming often point to Antarctica to show that Al Gore and others who worry about climate change have exaggerated the dangers greatly. They may concede that the Arctic is melting and even that Greenland is beginning to appear a bit shaky. But look at Antarctica, they will say. It’s actually growing colder, and the ice sheet is thickening. That argument is becoming harder to sustain. According to a study published last week in the journal Nature Geoscience, changes in water temperature and wind patterns related to global warming have begun to erode vast ice sheets in western Antarctica at a much faster rate than anyone had previously detected. IHT

Severn plans unveiled: Detailed plans of how power could be harnessed from the Severn estuary have been outlined today by the government. Last October the enterprise and business secretary John Hutton proposed a barrage from the English coast to Welsh coast which is predicted to generate five per cent of the UK’s electricity needs. The feasibility study for the project has been published today, which will also look at the potential of lagoons in the estuary. When the scheme was first proposed environmental campaigners expressed concern at the environmental impact, saying the estuary is an “irreplaceable refuge for wildlife”. InTheNews

US warns EU on using climate change as pretext: The United States warned the European Union yesterday against using climate change as a pretext for protectionism, setting the stage for trans-Atlantic tension over a new package of EU measures to combat global warming. The pointed comments by the US trade representative, Susan Schwab, after talks in Brussels, came just two days before the European Commission introduced its proposals for cutting EU emissions at least 20 percent from 1990 levels by 2020. Boston Globe