News Drilling equipment at the Cuadrilla exploration drilling site in Balcombe

No fracking will take place at a site in West Sussex which was at the centre of large-scale protests last year, energy company Cuadrilla has told residents.

A protestor lies down in front of the entrance gate

Sleepy Balcombe wakes up with a roar over prospect of fracking

Tom Bawden visits the West Sussex village where events are shaking up old allegiances

Jim Armitage: Desolation of Motor City carries a warning for other American cities as Detroit files for bankruptcy

Bondholders and unions will see Detroit as a test-case for cash-strapped cities

Under the Chancellor’s regime, shale gas producers will pay just 30 per cent tax on their profits

George Osborne reveals 50% tax break for fracking firms

Britain’s fledgling shale gas industry will get a major boost today as George Osborne cuts taxes on fracking profits to less than half the amount paid by conventional oil and gas producers.

Heavy flood waters sweeping through Beichuan in southwest China's Sichuan province

Devastating floods in China trigger huge landslide, burying 40

Rescue workers have been called to the scene in a bid to find survivors

The Cuadrilla shale fracking facility in Preston, Lancashire

Fracking ‘sticks in your mind because it is such a horrible word’: Malton has mixed feelings about its new prospects

On the British Geological Survey map published today, Malton in North Yorkshire is slap bang in the middle of a large blue shaded area.

The Indonesian President has apologised for the record-setting pollution caused by forest fires in his country

Indonesian President says sorry to Singapore for fires that have bathed city in toxic fog

The Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has apologised to Singapore and Malaysia for the record-setting pollution caused by forest fires in his country.

A tourist wearing the mask looks at the Forbidden City, Beijing

Death penalty threat for polluters in China

The death penalty is usually imposed for corruption and other economic crimes

A foreign tourist wearing a mask walks in front of Tiananmen Gate on a polluted day in Beijing

China orders its industries to cut pollution

Thirty per cent reduction aims to address dreadful record on the environment

David Cameron has demanded Google do more to rid the internet of child pornography, warning that lives are being put at risk.

'Lives are being put at risk': Google must do more to rid internet of child pornography, says David Cameron

David Cameron has demanded Google do more to rid the internet of child pornography, warning that lives are being put at risk.

A villager collects water in drought-ridden Tianlin county, China

Lack of fresh water could hit half the world’s population by 2050

Scientists warn that united action is needed to protect life’s most vital ingredient

A demonstrator stands firm outside a government building in China’s Yunnan province

Campaigners in China challenge authorities over environmental impact of planned petrochemical plant

Fears over proposed refinery in southern city of Kunming attracts thousands of protesters

Paperback review: Ocean Life, By Callum Roberts

Callum Roberts is a marine biologist and also a very good writer.

Exmouth beach

Don't come on in... the water's terrible: major reduction in number of recommended beaches

A dip in the sea will be the last thing on many people’s minds this Easter – but that may be for the best on some parts of the coast, with the quality of seawater dramatically worsening at famous British bathing spots because of last year’s heavy summer rainfall.

Postcard from...Hong Kong

Run Wild, by Boff Whalley

Raised as a Mormon in Burnley before going on to found an anarcho-punk band (Chumbawamba), Boff Whalley must be used to questioning accepted norms, and his target here is urban running in general and big-city marathons in particular.

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Independent Travel
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona from £629pp
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Prices correct as of 12 December 2014
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas
La Famille Bélier is being touted as this year's Amelie - so why are many in the deaf community outraged by it?

Deaf community outraged by La Famille Bélier

The new film tells the story of a deaf-mute farming family and is being touted as this year's Amelie
10 best high-end laptops

10 best high-end laptops

From lightweight and zippy devices to gaming beasts, we test the latest in top-spec portable computers
Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

The batsman has grown disillusioned after England’s Ashes debacle and allegations linking him to the Pietersen affair
Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

The Williams driver has had plenty of doubters, but hopes she will be judged by her ability in the cockpit
Adam Gemili interview: 'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

After a year touched by tragedy, Adam Gemili wants to become the sixth Briton to run a sub-10sec 100m
Calls for a military mental health 'quality mark'

Homeless Veterans campaign

Expert calls for military mental health 'quality mark'
Racton Man: Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman

Meet Racton Man

Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman
Garden Bridge: St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters

Garden Bridge

St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters
Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament: An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel

Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament

An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel
Joint Enterprise: The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice

Joint Enterprise

The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice
Freud and Eros: Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum: Objects of Desire

Freud and Eros

Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum