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Wag the Humpback, El Niño Fortune Telling, Beware the Pollen Vortex!
Our top picks: today's environmental news and best #greenreads.

Oh, Canada… : The Canadian government has de-listed the humpback whale! So good to hear that the animals are doing so well that they no longer need protections! If only it were, true. Alas, Canada’s quiet-as-a-mouse de-listing of the whale earlier this month is actually meant to help two new pipeline projects gain approval. The western end of one of the proposed pipelines—owned by our old buddies Enbridge—plans to go through critical humpback habitat (y’know places where they feed and raise young) off British Columbia (see "Canadian Democracy: Death by Pipeline"). Environmentalists argue against the pipelines due to increased underwater noise, the possibility of tanker collisions, and the likelihood of spills (especially likely with um, the likes of Enbridge). Huffington Post

Pollen vortex: Hide your kids, hide your wife, hide your husband—because there’s a wall of pollen blanketing Louisville, Kentucky, and no one (with allergies) is safe. Some experts say the high levels of pollen may have something to do with the polar vortex delaying spring temperatures and causing many plants to release pollen at the same time. WDRB

El Niño is coming: There’s some evidence to suggest the world may be headed for one of the most batshit crazy El Niño seasons ever recorded, with enough power to change weather patterns and usher in several years of off-the-charts heat. Or maybe it’s nothing. (“This time of year has the least predictability at any time all year.”) And frankly, it may all depend on where you live. Sport fishermen in San Francisco could be in for one hell of a season since mahi, swordfish, and blue marlin typically swim north during Los Niños. The skiing in Idaho will probably suck. Texas might actually get some rain, and precipitation across the Midwest could affect baseball playoffs in October. Click through to see how an El Niño might affect your region. Slate

Mercury rising: Since the first Earth Day back in 1970, average temperatures all across the globe have risen, but the Lower 48 is heating up at quite a clip. Check out how your state is faring with this infograph. And congrats(?) Delaware and Wisconsin, you are winning the hot race, if that’s a thing. OnEarth

Greener apples: In a new video narrated by CEO Tim Cook, Apple says renewable energy now powers 94 percent of its corporate facilities and 100 percent of its data centers (see “How Cool Is That?”). This is all part of the tech giant’s new environmental initiative, headed up by Lisa Jackson, formerly of the Environmental Protection Agency. Apple also expects its new HQ in Cupertino, California, to consume 30 percent less power than a normal structure of its size and the campus will be home to around 7,000 trees. Best of all, if you’re an Apple stockholder who doesn’t believe in climate change or sustainability, then Cook says you can take a freaking hike. Guardian

Four more years?: BP was really excited last week to announce the end of the “active cleanup” phase in the Gulf. The locals? Less so. It’s been four years since the Deepwater Horizon spewed millions of gallons of oil in the Gulf, and that oil is still washing up on shore. One oyster fisherman says he hasn’t found a single live oyster in his lease area since the disaster. And all the while residents have suffered through BP’s television commercials touting how the company fixed the Gulf. “But I’ve never been fixed,” says the fisherman. Reuters

DAILY DISTRACTION

No pre-nups allowed: Flamingos don’t make it work. Neither do swans nor piping plovers. But when albatrosses settle down, they do so for life. And that could be a long time—one albatross known by researchers as Wisdom still raises chicks at the ripe old age of 62. Human marriages, by the way, fail 40 percent of the time. That means we roughly have the same pair-bond success rate as Nazca boobies. NPR

OTHER HEADLINES

17 Ridiculously Easy Things You Can Do To Help Save The Earth Every Day Huffington Post

UW Researchers Study Plastic Garbage in the Great Lakes TheRecord.com

Global Warming Can’t Be Blamed on CFCs—Another One Bites the Dust Guardian

Tips: @OnEarthMag (tag it #greenreads)

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