Business of Water

Crews hope break in weather will aid fight against California wildfire


LOS ANGELES - Crews hoped to take advantage of improved weather conditions on Friday to stop a raging Northern California wildfire before it claims 12,000 homes in the path of the flames that have already charred nearly 120 square miles of drought-parched forest land.

Storm forces closure of Florence museums for damage checks

FLORENCE Italy - Florence officials ordered the closure of many of the Tuscan city's museums on Friday, including the famed Uffizi Gallery, while technicians checked for damage after a particularly violent storm.

Environment, 5:25pm BST

Mexico sends troops to Los Cabos after looting, thousands stranded

SAN JOSE DEL CABO - Mexico sent in troops and police to safeguard thousands of tourists stranded in the storm-battered Mexican Pacific resort of Los Cabos on Thursday after widespread looting. | Video

Environment, 4:20pm BST

China power plants exempt from ban on using low-quality coal: sources

SHANGHAI/MELBOURNE - China's bid to limit the consumption of low-quality thermal coal in major cities to help curb pollution will not apply to power plants, traders and utility sources said, exempting a sector responsible for half the country's coal use.

Environment, 10:47am BST

Heavy rain floods Philippine capital; markets, schools shut

MANILA - Heavy rain in the Philippine capital, Manila, caused flooding in many areas on Friday, shutting schools, government offices and financial markets as a tropical storm made landfall to the north.

Environment, 6:28am BST

Florida scientists urge state leaders to join climate summit

TALLAHASSEE - A group of 42 scientists from Florida universities submitted a joint letter on Thursday urging Governor Rick Scott and other state leaders to participate in a summit this fall to seek solutions for climate change.

Environment, Science, 18 Sep 2014

New evacuations ordered as California wildfire doubles in size

LOS ANGELES - More residents of Northern California mountain communities were told to leave their homes on Thursday after an out-of-control wildfire doubled in size overnight, scorching more than 100 square miles of drought-parched timber and brush. | Video

Environment, 18 Sep 2014

Water scarce for thousands in Mexico's Los Cabos as new storm looms

SAN JOSE DEL CABO - Thousands of tourists were stranded in the storm-battered Mexican Pacific resort of Los Cabos on Thursday, with water in short supply and looted stores sitting empty as a new hurricane threatened to buffet the popular tourist hub. | Video

Environment, 18 Sep 2014

Wildfire in California's Sierra Nevada menaces 1,600 homes

LOS ANGELES - Fire crews in California's rugged Sierra Nevada battled to gain the upper hand on Wednesday against a blaze that threatened 1,600 homes and has displaced 2,100 residents as flames roared for a fifth day through dry timber and brush west of Lake Tahoe. | Video

Environment, 17 Sep 2014

Officials warn of potentially toxic algae on major Portland river

PORTLAND Ore. - Public health officials in Oregon warned recreational boaters and swimmers who on warm days flock to a river that bisects Portland to stay out of the water on Wednesday after detecting what they suspect is a potentially dangerous toxic algae.

Health, Environment, 17 Sep 2014

China’s cities see clean air, water as magnet for investment

Despite severe air pollution, local and provincial officials in the Chinese city of Nanchang are trying to clean it up and make it more attractive for foreign investment, making the city an important test case for efforts to ease the environmental damage from unchecked economic growth.