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In Emacs 25 GUI, 1. Shell process loads environment variables, 2. Python process, started by run-python, doesn't load environment variables.

Run Emacs terminal mode in iTem2: Both shell and python process load environment variables.

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Under OSX, Emacs itself wont, by default, load the same environment as your user unless you either:

  1. Start emacs from the shell (in terminal or gui mode)
  2. Use the exec-path-from-shell package, here
  3. Manually assemble Emacs' path from your users' PATH in your init.el (not recommended)
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If all you're interested in, are the PATH and MANPATH variables, one way to get good values for those, are with this code (snipped from my emacs init file):

(let ((path-helper
   (lambda (p pd)
     (with-temp-buffer
       (mapc (lambda (filename)
           (insert-file-contents filename)
           (goto-char (point-max))
           (unless (bolp) (insert "\n")))
         (cons p (directory-files pd t "[^.]")))
       (let (res)
     (goto-char (point-min))
     (while (< (point) (point-max))
       (setq res (cons (buffer-substring
                (point) (progn (end-of-line) (point)))
               res))
       (forward-char 1))
     (nreverse res))))))
  (setq exec-path (funcall path-helper "/etc/paths" "/etc/paths.d"))
  (setenv "PATH" (mapconcat #'identity exec-path ":"))
  (setenv "MANPATH"
      (mapconcat #'identity
         (funcall path-helper "/etc/manpaths" "/etc/manpaths.d")
         ":")))

But then, of course, you need to maintain the files /etc/paths, /etc/paths.d/*, /etc/manpaths, and /etc/manpaths.d/*. In any case, in the default setup, your login shell on OS X uses those files to set these variables, with the help of the path_helper utility, so this should be no great burden.

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