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.

Photography book of the week: Black Maps - American Landscape and the Apocalyptic Sublime, By David Maisel

"These photographs," writes David Maisel, one of a group of landscape photographers dubbed "the New Topographics", "depict the landscape of the American West as the site of human-induced trauma."

Chen Zuqian shows his injuries after the attack. His protest was to highlight the state of China’s rivers, above – one-fifth of which are so polluted the water is too poisonous for human contact

Chinese farmer beaten for daring official to swim in filthy river

Activist attacked by 40-strong mob after bet to highlight pollution in China's waterways

Litvinenko died in November 2006 after he was poisoned with polonium-210 while drinking tea at a meeting

Independent challenges secrecy at inquest into death of former Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko

A state order to withhold sensitive evidence from the inquest into Alexander Litvinenko’s death on national security grounds will be challenged by media organisations including The Independent tomorrow.

Hawkers selling barbecued goods like these lamb kebabs may be a thing of the past if the government goes ahead with the barbecue ban

Controversial move to ban barbecues in Beijing riles Chinese web-users

A controversial measure being considered in order to reduce the dangerous levels of pollution in Beijing has been met with ridicule and indignation online.

Residents look at a heavily polluted river in the town of Zhugao in China's southwest Sichuan province

The £24,000 question: Would you take a dip in China's polluted rivers?

A businessman in China’s wealthy Zhejiang province has dared his environmental protection chief to take a dip in a polluted river in Rui’an city for 200,000 yuan (£24,000), after posting pictures of the rubbish-filled waterway on his microblog.

Staff at the RSPCA West Hatch Wildlife Centre rub margarine into the feathers to help clean a stricken guillemot covered in pollutant near Taunton

Scientists identify sticky gunk that killed seabirds off south coast

University team says substance was additive used in lubricants

Vice-Premier Li Keqiang says that tackling pollution would be a
long-term process

China plans emergency measures to control worsening air pollution

Choking smog blamed on pursuit of economic growth

Floods paralyse Indonesian capital of Jakarta

Indonesia's army deployed rubber boats in the capital's business district today to rescue people trapped in floods that inundated much of the city of 14 million people. The president was pictured standing in water up to his shins — his trousers rolled up — at the palace waiting for the arrival of Argentina's leader on a state visit.

People told to stay indoors as air pollution in Beijing reaches hazardous levels

Air pollution levels in China's notoriously dirty capital were at dangerous levels today, with cloudy skies blocking out visibility and warnings issued for people to remain indoors.

Editorial: The logic of 20mph speed limits

That more than a third of local authorities have either already instituted a 20mph speed limit on some residential roads, or have plans to do so, can only be applauded. And with public support for more stringent restrictions in built-up areas now running at more than 60 per cent, as reported by this newspaper this week, it can only be hoped that 20mph will soon become the new normal.

Street life: a labourer with infant and shovel in New Delhi

A Free Man: A True Story of Life and Death in Delhi, By Aman Sethi

A searingly honest account of India's underclass of urban labourers and how they survive

Deutsche Bank offices raided in carbon tax investigation

Leading executives at Deutsche Bank have been drawn into a carbon permits tax investigation after raids on the Berlin, Dusseldorf and Frankfurt offices of Germany's biggest lender.

Deutsche Bank chiefs in carbon permits tax probe

Leading executives at Deutsche Bank have been drawn into a carbon permits tax investigation after raids on the Berlin, Dusseldorf and Frankfurt offices of Germany's biggest lender.

Margaret Street Gallery presents Thursdays By The Sea - photographs by Marcus Doyle

Photography: Excuse me, please – is this seat taken?

This haunting image by photographer Marcus Doyle is taken from his "Salton Sea" series, which forms part of his Thursday by the Sea exhibition, opening at London's Margaret Street Gallery this Tuesday.

Other people's music is the soundtrack to my commute

iPod sound pollution is on the rise, and it's not dodgy headphones that cause it, but people who don't give a damn about others

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 23 January 2015
Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
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