This little carbon went to market. America’s first carbon cap-and-trade program starts today, when power plant owners in 10 northeastern states submit sealed bids to buy allowances to emit greenhouse gases. Two other regional programs are to follow, assuring that nearly half of the US will be covered by carbon trading programs — with or without leadership from Congress and the White House. — Grist

Breathing earth. An online simulation which displays the carbon dioxide emission levels of every country in the world, as well as their birth and death rates – all in real-time. — Breathing Earth

Watching our seas. Australian scientists set sail later this week on a voyage that could lead to better data from the Southern Ocean, which plays a major role in acting as a brake on climate chage. Oceans absorb vast amounts of carbon dioxide and the Southern Ocean between Australia and Antarctica plays the greatest role of all the world’s oceans, scientists say. — Environmental News Network

NSW govt defends wetland logging. The NSW Government has dismissed accusations it illegally logged huge swaths of listed wetlands featuring river red gums, saying only a tiny fraction of forests in the state’s south were being harvested. A report by the National Parks Association of NSW says state Government body Forests NSW has logged almost 20,000ha of wetlands in the Riverina. The logging of the state forests breached federal environmental protection laws, association spokeswoman Georgina Woods said yesterday. The gums are listed under the international Ramsar convention, a treaty on the conservation and sustainable use of wetlands. — The Canberra Times

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey