Leading article: Safeguard the wood and the trees

It is a measure of the lack of trust in modern politics that no one seems to believe the Environment Secretary when she says that England's forests will be safe in the hands of private owners if the Government goes ahead with selling them off. A sale would be bad for wildlife and restrict public access to the land, the public feels. The minister, Caroline Spelman, says measures will be put in place to prevent that. But 75 per cent of voters polled oppose the plan to sell off half our forests in the largest change of land ownership since the Second World War. And there is more to this than a romantic attachment to the idea of Britain's ancient woodlands.

Lib Dem MPs threaten rebellion over forests sale

Liberal Democrat MPs are threatening to rebel against controversial plans by the Government to sell off part of England's forests, which will be announced today.

Spelman promises to close travellers' sites loophole

Environment Secretary Caroline Spelman today promised to stop travellers obtaining retrospective planning permission to allow them to remain permanently in camps which they have set up illegally.

Report highlights threat to biodiversity

A fifth of the world's mammals, birds, fish, reptiles and amphibians are under threat of extinction, a major report warned today as governments continued to discuss efforts to tackle losses to the natural world.

Caroline Spelman: Her curtains are shabby, but her axe is sharp

The Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has efficiently identified cuts while other ministers dither. And yet, she won't take a position on wheelie bins. Matt Chorley meets Caroline Spelman

Martin Hickman: Approval is one thing, but will the public swallow GM foods?

Genetic modification isn't something that particularly vexes the public – at least for now. Research shows that public "concern" about the issue has fallen from 43 per cent in 2001 to 27 per cent in 2008.

Design: why buy British?

Globalisation has put pressure on all types of business to outsource production, move jobs abroad and, in doing so, cut costs. As a result British producers have been in decline for a number of decades. In recent years, however, increased awareness of climate change, a growing world population, political instability and the financial crisis – not to mention the ethical issues often associated with working conditions abroad – have forced consumers to think more carefully about where their produce comes from.

Leading article: A policy for the planet

The pace of global warming is so slow that it is hard for most mere mortals to grasp its implications. That may explain why so many people refuse to accept the science of climate change. It often requires creative artists to convey the scale of its challenge to humanity. In Earthquakes in London, the highly acclaimed play by Mike Bartlett at the National Theatre, an expectant mother is driven half-mad by her fears for the planet on which her baby will be born.

Britain must adapt to 'inevitable' climate change, warns minister

As experts call for action now, the coalition withholds green funding and appeals to private enterprise

Ministers braced for animal-lovers' anger over badger cull plan

Government expects legal challenges from wildlife activists as it consults on how to tackle TB in cattle

Environment Quangos: Green initiatives in the firing line

Ministers have denied abandoning their green ambitions, despite abolishing nearly 40 environment and agriculture quangos. Most controversially, Caroline Spelman, the Environment Secretary, is scrapping the Sustainable Development Commission, which advises the government on money-saving green initiatives.

Leading article: A failure of imagination

Before the election, David Cameron made much of his party's newfound enthusiasm for the environment. Under the Tories there would be no airport expansion or attacks on the green belt. Then, after the Conservatives joined forces with the Liberal Democrats, the greenest of the three main parties, many people justifiably hoped that the new Government was about to make the environment a top concern.

Unwanted gadgets that could spark a charity cash drive

Hoarded appliances to be recycled for good causes

Spelman plans to get tough on toy packaging and recycling

The toy industry faces a crackdown on excessive packaging under plans to reduce the amount of rubbish sent to landfills, the new Environment Secretary has warned.

Judgement day looms for Neville's zero-carbon footprint

The Man United star is passionate about his flower-shaped property – but others are less than convinced by it
Voices
Stephanie first after her public appearance as a woman at Rad Fest 2014
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Arts and Entertainment
Banksy's 'The Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' in Bristol
art'Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' followed hoax reports artist had been arrested and unveiled
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Oscar Pistorius is led out of court in Pretoria. Pistorius received a five-year prison sentence for culpable homicide by judge Thokozile Masipais for the killing of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp
voicesThokozile Masipa simply had no choice but to jail the athlete
Life and Style
tech

Board creates magnetic field to achieve lift

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Russell Brand at an anti-austerity march in June
peopleActor and comedian says 'there's no point doing it if you're not'
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Arts and Entertainment
James Blunt's debut album Back to Bedlam shot him to fame in 2004
music

Singer says the track was 'force-fed down people's throats'

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Endangered species spotted in a creek in the Qinling mountains

Life and Style
tech

Company says data is only collected under 'temporary' identities that are discarded every 15 minutes

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Bryan Cranston as Walter White, in the acclaimed series 'Breaking Bad'
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Prices correct as of 17 October 2014
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album