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
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
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Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
Why the league system no longer measures up

League system no longer measures up

Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert
Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Former one-day coach says he will ‘observe’ their World Cup games – but ‘won’t be jumping up and down’
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness