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Environment and nature

Researchers seek better ways to farm popular Pacific fish

PORT ORCHARD, Wash. (AP) — The dark gray fish prized for its buttery flavor live deep in the ocean, so researchers keep their lab cold and dark to simulate ideal conditions for sablefish larvae. A biologist shines his dim red headlamp and uses an ultrasound to scan the belly of …

A new oyster war: Rich homeowners vs. working-class watermen

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) — Oystermen, pirates and police clashed violently more than a century ago over who could collect the Chesapeake Bay’s tasty and lucrative oysters. As the shellfish makes a comeback, a modern-day oyster war is brewing, this time between wealthy waterfront property owners and working-class fishermen. Over …

Nepal man, 85, dies trying to become oldest Everest climber

KATHMANDU, Nepal (AP) — An 85-year-old Nepali man has died while attempting to regain his title as the oldest person to climb Mount Everest, officials said. Min Bahadur Sherchan died at the Everest base camp on Saturday evening. The cause of death was not immediately clear, but mountaineering official Gyanendra …

In Mexico, fears a new plant will kill wastewater farming

TEPATEPEC, Mexico (AP) — For more than 100 years, most of what gets flushed down Mexico City’s toilets has resurfaced two hours to the north in the rivers and reservoirs of the rural Mezquital Valley. A massive new water treatment plant is about to change this. But rather than welcoming …

China car dilemma: Beijing wants electric, buyers want SUVs

BEIJING (AP) — Automakers face a dilemma in China’s huge but crowded market: Regulators are pushing them to sell electric cars, but buyers want gas-guzzling SUVs. The industry is rattled by Beijing’s proposal to require that electric cars make up 8 percent of every brand’s production as early as next …

Study: Bird population in Vermont forests drop 14.2 percent

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — The bird population in Vermont’s forests has declined 14.2 percent over 25 years, largely due to several factors, including invasive species, climate change, and the natural cycle of maturing forests, scientists with the Vermont Center for Ecostudies say. The Norwich-based environmental research group says other factors …

Madagascar forest overwhelmed by thousands seeking sapphires

ANTANANARIVO, Madagascar (AP) — A sapphire rush has brought tens of thousands of people into the remote rainforests of eastern Madagascar, disfiguring a protected environmental area and prompting calls for military intervention. More high-quality sapphires have been found in the biodiverse area known as Corridor Ankeniheny-Zahamena in the past six …