Friday, September 29, 2017

Tropical forests used to protect us from climate change

Tropical forests used to protect us from climate change. Now, scientists say, they’re making it worse

A surprising scientific study released Thursday presents troubling news about the enormous forests of the planet's tropical midsection — suggesting that they are releasing hundreds of millions of tons of carbon to the atmosphere, rather than storing it in the trunks of trees and other vegetation.

The results, published in the journal Science, contradict prior work in suggesting that these forests — including the Amazon rain forest but also huge tropical forests in Indonesia, Congo and elsewhere — have become another net addition to the climate change problem. However, the accounting also implies that if the current losses could be reversed, the forests could also rapidly transform into a powerful climate change solution.

"The losses due to deforestation and degradation are actually emitting more CO2 to the atmosphere, compared with how much the existing forest is able to absorb," said Alessandro Baccini, the lead author of the study and a researcher at the Woods Hole Research Center. He conducted the study with fellow scientists from Woods Hole and Boston University.


(http://www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/news/energy-environment/wp/2017/09/28/tropical-forests-used-to-protect-us-from-climate-change-a-new-study-says-theyre-now-making-it-worse/

Friday, September 22, 2017

Oil companies sued to pay for cost of rising sea levels, climate change

Oil companies sued to pay for cost of rising sea levels, climate change | Ars Technica

At least five California municipalities are suing five major oil companies, claiming in public nuisance lawsuits that the firms should pay for the infrastructure costs associated with rising sea levels due to climate change.

The latest suits announced Wednesday by Oakland and San Francisco name BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, and Royal Dutch Shell. The cities claim the oil companies knew of the dangers of fossil-fuel-driven climate change but kept mum. The cities claim that global warming, which they say has melted ice sheets and heated sea water, has contributed to rising seas by about eight inches in California over the past decade. They say it could rise 10 feet by the year 2100.

"The bill has come due," San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera said. "It's time for these companies to take responsibility."

San Francisco's suit (PDF) claims the oil companies went on a campaign for decades to fool the public. More

Friday, September 15, 2017

WANTED: Helpers to save the planet!


Eager to contribute to climate action? And at least 18 years old?
UN Volunteers will recruit more than 650 volunteers to support the UN Climate Change Conference from 6-17 November 2017.
Registration will be open on Monday, 18 September.

Find out more about the application process on: https://www.unv.org/cop23

For more information about the COP23 please visit the UNFCCC website: http://newsroom.unfccc.int/cop-23-bonn/

****French Version****

RECHERCHE(E): Volontaires pour sauver la planète !
Tu es motivé(e) de contribuer à l'action climatique ? Et tu as au moins 18 ans ?
Le programme Volontaires des Nations Unies recrute plus de 650 volontaires pour soutenir la Conférence des Nations Unies sur les changements climatiques entre le 6-17 novembre 2017.
L'inscription sera ouverte à partir de lundi 18 septembre.

Pour en savoir plus sur le processus d'application : https://www.unv.org/cop23

Pour plus d'information sur la Cop23, visitez le site web de la CCNUCC: http://newsroom.unfccc.int/cop-23-bonn/

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Can business save the world from climate change?


"We are still in." On June 5, with these four words a group of U.S. businesses and investors with a combined annual revenue of $1.4 trillion sent a powerful message to the world: U.S. President Donald Trump may have withdrawn from the Paris agreement on climate change four days earlier, but corporate America was not following suit.

"We Are Still In" launched with more than 20 Fortune 500 companies on board, including Google, Apple, Nike and Microsoft, as well as a host of smaller companies. The statement was coordinated by a large collective of organizations including World Wildlife Fund, Rocky Mountain Institute, Climate Mayors, Ceres and Bloomberg Philanthropies. It has grown to include more than 1,500 businesses and investors, as well as nine U.S. states, more than 200 cities and counties and more than 300 colleges and universities. More

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Images From a Warming Planet


Ashley Cooper has just spent the last thirteen years travelling to every continent on the planet to document the impacts of climate change and the rise of renewable energy. He is the only living photographer to have done so. His new book with 500 of the best images from his epic journey around the world, "Images From a Warming Planet is out now.

It came out to some great reviews, including from Jonathon Porritt who called it "an extraordinary photographic record and a powerful call to action"​ You can read the reviews, peruse the book and even purchase a copy from www.imagesfromawarmingplanet.net

The book has also just won a Green Apple Award for Environmental Best Practice.

Friday, August 18, 2017

A rich person's profession? Young conservationists struggle to make it


fter two years of looking for paid work as a conservationist around Europe and four months doing unpaid work in East Africa, Levikov moved to the island of Malta to work at Greenhouse Malta. Levikov, who owes over $100,000 in student loans, described her work at the small environment NGO as “casual” and “freelancing” — some hours are paid, others are volunteer — while the group looks to secure more funding.

“The reality many of us face is that we will have to babysit, clean toilets, and serve drinks as we try to gain the experience we need in conservation to finally get that dream job,” said Levikov, a former intern at Mongabay, who just turned 30.

“I’m not blaming anyone for my current situation in which I am utterly broke and still crossing my fingers that in the near future my career will finally take off,” she told Mongabay. “Indeed I was wrong in thinking that all my hard, unpaid work would lead to something or that having a degree from a…highly-respected university would give me a leg-up.”
https://goo.gl/NdDfiF

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth To Power

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth To Power - Get Involved! in a Reality Check

This weekend, former US Vice President Al Gore returns to the big screen with An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power, a new film that celebrates the movement you've helped to create and generates new momentum in the most important fight of our time.

This film comes a little more than a decade after An Inconvenient Truth, the film that launched a global movement and inspired thousands of activists like you to join Vice President Gore in his mission to spread the word about the climate crisis and its solutions.

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power highlights the actions of Climate Reality Leaders like in the years since the first film, and sends a message that we can't stop now.

Now is the time for all of us to fight like our world depends on it.

This film provides a unique moment for us to gather our friends and networks and enlist them in this fight, helping to ensure that the climate crisis becomes a prominent issue for all communities in the months and years to come.

Besides taking others to see the film and sharing opportunities for local action, we can also share Vice

President Gore's new handbook for climate action. The book is a guide to making a difference and features the impactful stories of a number of Climate Reality Leaders, and is available from Amazon and other booksellers.

As this film and the accompanying handbook reach audiences across the US and around the globe, we have a powerful opportunity to build momentum and urgency around climate action at all levels of society.

Whether you take this chance to rally your community to the cause, or simply log an extra Act of Leadership in coming weeks, we know Climate Reality Leaders won't let this powerful moment pass by.

The film premieres in New York and Los Angeles this Friday, July 28, and in cities across the US on
August 4.

Not in the US? International release dates are still being revealed and updated all the time, so search your favorite movie website to find out if An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power is showing soon in your area.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

100% Clean, Renewable Energy Is Possible, Practical, Logical — Setting The Record Straight


Since 2009, Mark Jacobson, Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Stanford University and Senior Fellow at the Woods Institute for the Environment and Precourt Institute for Energy, and more than 85 coauthors have written a series of peer-reviewed journal articles evaluating the scientific, engineering, and economic potential of transitioning the world’s energy infrastructures to 100% clean, renewable wind, water, and solar (WWS) power for all purposes by 2050, namely electricity, transportation, heating, cooling, and industrial energy uses.

These papers have helped to shift the global conversation around the possibility of completely decarbonizing the world’s energy sector through renewables. They have helped to motivate a wave of 100% renewable energy commitments by over 100 cities and subnational governments, including 35 cities in North America, 100 large international companies, and 48 countries. California, the world’s 6th largest economy, just announced its 100% by 2045 renewable target and proposed U.S. House Resolution HR540, U.S. Senate Resolution SR 632, and U.S. Senate Bill S.987 calling for the United States to go to 100% clean, renewable energy by 2050. More

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Distributed Solar Is Less Expensive Than Delivered Coal Power


On March 22, 2017, Rocky Mountain Institute’s Shine Program released a request for proposals (RFP) for community-scale solar on behalf of a group of rural electric cooperatives in eastern and northern Colorado. The RFP was part of RMI’s ongoing work to develop the community-scale market nationwide.

Nearly 30 developers responded to the RFP, providing highly competitive bids. Prices for solar power purchase agreements were lower than the value of solar to the co-ops, and so solar is expected to result in economic savings for participating co-ops.

RFP results confirm that we have crossed a significant tipping point where distributed solar is not only a means to supply green energy and to promote regional economic development, but also an opportunity to decrease energy costs and to drive down bills for price-sensitive energy consumers. The Colorado RFP outcomes are informative to utilities nationwide, but particularly to co-ops and municipal utilities in Colorado and neighboring states that are contemplating solar development and are interested in joining a regional procurement opportunity. More

Friday, June 9, 2017

Ocean Conference commitments show world on track to protect over 10% of globe's Marine Areas by 2020

Ocean Conference commitments show world on track to protect over 10% of globe's #MarineAreas by 2020. #SaveOurOcean oceanconference.un.org/prjune9

The Cayman Islands must join this initiative as we are a maritime nation More
#caymancentreofexcellence

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

British territories' environment 'at risk'

Wildlife and the environment in far-flung British territories are under threat, says a report.

Environment ministers from Britain's overseas territories say the government has cut funds and been distracted by Brexit. They say there is huge confusion among government departments about responsibility for the territories.

The government calls the criticism unfair and points to its creation of large marine protection areas.

The UK holds jurisdiction over 19 British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies - parts of the British Empire that have not been granted independence or have voted to remain British territories.

Therefore, I would argue that it is time for the colonies to take more responsability and control of their environments. Editor

https://goo.gl/nCvcwz

Monday, May 22, 2017

Atlantic Crossing

Albert Bates is in London this week and on their trip across the pond they could not help but think how much more we would much prefer to have gotten here by sail.

Sadly, there is a distinct competitive advantage that favors passenger jets. If following tradewinds for an ocean crossing means devoting days and weeks for such travel, clipper ships are not coming back any time soon. Still, given the past century’s advances in materials and computing power, there are great opportunities for innovation in Atlantic crossings.

There are also some black swans that could tip the balance against flying. The three biggies are peak oil, climate weirding and cyberwarfare.

https://goo.gl/U2B7LN

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Climate change can cause both flooding and droughts


Climate change can cause both flooding and droughts. How is that possible? Learn more: bit.ly/2kY6xh6

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

The Climate War Room now has new .eco domain

The Climate War Room, an initiative of The Cayman Institute is committed to using a .eco domain, which is a new web address ending for anyone committed to positive change for the planet.


.eco is a new web address ending—known as a top-level domain—for anyone committed to positive change for the planet. .eco web addresses are available to any business, government, non-profit or individual working toward a sustainable future.

The .eco domain is backed by more than 50 environmental organizations including Conservation International, United Nations Global Compact and WWF and is a trusted symbol for the environmental community. www.climatewarroom.org

Towards a livable future


Humans have influenced nature since as early as the Ice Age, and over the past century our impact has become even greater with our many new technologies and a growing world population. Leiden researchers study this impact and how we can keep it within reasonable limits so that nature can be preserved. We cannot do without nature: we need it for our food and for raw materials, as well as for relaxation.

Human and nature: a complex relationship

Humans were probably already deliberately burning down forest areas at the end of the Ice Age, in order to create a more variable landscape. Since then the world population has grown exponentially, and will continue to do so, which means that man's impact on the planet will also increase. Natural systems and cycles are becoming disrupted leading to such problems as pollution, depletion of resources and climate change. There is evidence that biodiversity plays a major role in stable ecosystems, and, besides this, nature is a valuable asset for humans because of the peace and relaxation that it can offer. The way we use the planet does not always reflect our desire to create -- and maintain -- a healthy living environment. In Leiden researchers investigate how we can bridge this gap and how we can provide a good life for ourselves without harming the planet and future generations.

What works for us?

Leiden researchers from different disciplines conduct research on nature and biodiversity, investigating such questions as what man's impact is in farmland areas, for instance. 'The Netherlands is a small country with a super-intensive agrarian culture,' Gert de Snoo explains. De Snoo, Professor of Conservation Biology, and his colleagues discovered that maintaining small areas of nature on farmland, such as wild flowers along the borders of fields, can have a positive effect on biodiversity. Ecotoxicologists conduct research on the effects of biodiversity, exploring the influence of pesticides on local biodiversity. We can also learn from the past. Archaeologists study how man influenced his living environment in the past and what the consequences were. This could be something like the erosion of areas of loess in South Limburg, a process that was started by the Romans, but that only in the 20th century led to extensive mudslides, making the land permanently unsuitable for agriculture. All these insights generate knowledge about how we can best approach our need for food while at the same time preserving the planet.

Don't exhaust nature: use it wisely

We all want so much today: we want to live in nice houses, fly all over the world and have the newest and best smartphones. All this is possible, but at the same time we are exhausting the planet because all these products and services need raw materials. Over the years Leiden has collected enormous amounts of data on raw material supplies. How do physical flows of raw materials move across the world? Where can they be found? Leiden has the world's biggest database on this issue, which makes it possible for our researchers to chart the metabolism of society. This offers insights into the best ways of using and reusing sustainable materials so we are better able to create a circular economy.

Story Source:

Materials provided by Leiden, Universiteit.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Caribbean Transitional Energy Conference

WHY CAYMAN? WHY NOW?

Caribbean economies suffer from some of the highest electricity prices in the world. Despite their abundance of renewable energy sources, Cayman has a relatively low level of renewable energy penetration; the economy continues to spend a large proportion of its GDP on imported fossil fuels.

The Caribbean Transitional Energy Conference (CTEC) is about building our resilience as a small nation, about diversifying our energy sector and the way that we do business.

It is about ensuring sustainable social and economic growth through strong leadership, recognising the threat of climate change and the vulnerability of islands across the world and voicing our commitment to take the measures that we can take now. More

Sunday, March 5, 2017

This grazing and cover crop system is producing some impressive numbers - By Gabe Brown


Phone calls, emails and even a few old-fashioned letters — all say the same thing. As I travel presenting at conferences and workshops, the statement comes up repeatedly.

If only I had a dollar for the number of times I had people tell me, “Gabe, you just don’t understand that our soils are not like yours.” I have learned to listen patiently (OK, sometimes not so patiently) as these people tell me all the reasons my soils are productive, and theirs are not.

When they finish, I ask them what they imagine their land looked like pre-European settlement. To this I usually receive a puzzled look.

My point is this: How is it that these lands were once healthy, functioning ecosystems? What changed between then and now? Could it be that we are the reason our land is no longer as productive as it once was? Could it be we are the reason that our soils do not function properly?

We get a lot of visitors to our ranch, more than 2,100 last summer alone. I think most come wanting a “silver bullet.” What we show them is simply how to use the principles of nature to their advantage.

I make it a point to show the difference between soils on our ranch and those of nearby operations. All have the same soil types.

The accompanying table shows soil testing results for four operations in my neighborhood. The one titled “Organic” is just that — an organic operation that is very diverse in its cropping system. The operator grows spring wheat, barley, oats, corn, sunflowers, peas, soybeans, dry edible beans and alfalfa. Natural, organic fertilizers are used. No livestock are integrated onto this cropland. More

Climate Ecoforestry

In 2008 we asked Frank Michael a tough question. Frank is a physicist, formerly with the Ames Research Center group that created the first Flying Solar Laboratory to study the sun and its “weather” and prevent astronauts from being fried by solar storms. We asked him what would happen to atmospheric carbon if everyone on earth planted a tree each day.

It was an interesting question, and one that was not easy to answer. Frank explained some of the variables to us. You would want to know what kind of trees are planted; what their lifespan will be; what happens to their carbon store when they die; the net photosynthetic productivity of the forest, by hectare, based on soils, rainfall, latitude and expected climate change; the effect of all the stored carbon in the ocean that would “leak back” into the atmosphere in response — trying to re-balance the distribution of carbon dioxide — and much more.

Nonetheless, he agreed to give it a go. Thus began a system model that Frank Michael will be presenting at the 7th World Congress on Ecological Restoration later this year in Foz do Iguassu, Brazil.

The question changed to “what amount of trees, land and biochar would be needed to return the atmosphere to ‘normal’ and how long would it take?” We know much less about paleoclimate drawdowns and feedbacks than we know about epochs of carbonization. As his calculations and his global model became more elaborate, he began to be drawn to the complexity of the social dimension. What are the potentials for unplanned reversals like deforestation, population pressure, energy demand and urban sprawl? How many of those trees would survive one year? 5 years? 100 years? Who would care for them and how would those people be compensated? How would you pay for the biochar conversion?

Frank came up with a model that we can only describe as pure genius, worthy some day of a Nobel Prize should he ever be recognized. His “step harvest” system, which we first described in The Biochar Solution, sets out a practical methodology for employing hundreds of millions of forest stewards to regenerate and revitalize neglected and abandoned “wastelands,” working with principles of ecological regeneration and patch management to stack yields while optimizing ecological functions. Rather than rely on charity, it relies on capitalism – a healthy return of investment in semi-autonomous but coordinated microenterprises. More

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Chevron is first oil major to warn investors of risks from climate change lawsuits


Big Oil’s lies about the existential risk posed by its product are now catching up with the industry and threatening profits.

For the first time, one of the major publicly owned fossil fuel companies admitted publicly to investors that climate change lawsuits poses a risk to risk to its profits.
You’re probably thinking that seems like an obvious admission. After all, 190 nations unanimously agreed in the December 2015 Paris climate deal to leave most fossil fuels in the ground because of the existential threat they pose to human civilization.

But this is Big Oil — the industry that has been denying or pretending to deny the existence of climate change for over half a century.
In the “risk factors” section of Chevron’s 2016 10-K financial performance report to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) — amid a discussion of how those pesky climate rules governments are enacting might hurt demand for its product — is this sentence: “In addition, increasing attention to climate change risks has resulted in an increased possibility of governmental investigations and, potentially, private litigation against the company.” http://bit.ly/2mndUir

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

The Great Change: Mount Pleasant by Albert Bates

Sunday, February 19, 2017

"The problem is not our understanding of the science or the efficacy of our potential solutions. The problem is human willingness to do the right thing before its too late."

We first latched onto the notion of catastrophic climate change back around 1980 when we were a young attorney taking quixotic cases involving impossible-to-rectify injustices like cancers among atomic veterans, trespass of sacred sites or nuclear waste disposal, and shoving those insults under the noses of attorneys-general, judges and justices to try to get a reaction.

Occasionally we would finesse a surprising win and that helped attract donations to keep the enterprise running and the entertainment value high, attracting more donors, and so it went.

One such case was against the deepwell injection of toxic effluent from the manufacture of pesticides and herbicides by agrochemical companies in Mt. Pleasant, Tennessee. The effluent in question had been extracted from an aquifer and tested by State laboratories where was quickly ranked as the most concentrated poison they had ever pulled from the wild. A single green fluorescent drop killed all the fish in the tank. There were 6 billion gallons injected under Middle Tennessee from 1967 to 1980. It made Love Canal look like the kiddie pool.

https://goo.gl/gw1SCk

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Petition to UN Secretary-General to change the name of our planet from Earth to Peace


Humanity is now playing in the Major Leagues.

As I said in 2011, in 2016, and say again today in 2017, unless the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion protest, like the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe's Dakota Access Pipeline protest is successful, there will be casualties, political casualties and eventually millions of human casualties. Casualties from run-away climate change, sea level rise and from conflict. Not to mention from from difficulties in feeding an ever increasing population.

Continued burning of fossil fuel, driven mainly by capitalist greed, will eventually pollute the atmosphere and the environment to the degree that is will no longer support life. What future are we leaving to our children and grandchildren and future generations? There are those scientists like James Lovelock who argues that it is too 'little too late'. http://bit.ly/2irVnAY

Even if we did suspend the burning of petroleum and coal tomorrow our coastal cities and small island developing states would continue to experience sea level rise for hundreds of years. http://bit.ly/2irRxrC

We have had now had, besides the upcoming Trans Mountain pipeline expansion protest, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe's Dakota Access Pipeline protest, the election of president-elect Trump, OWS protests in 2011, protests in Brazil and Turkey, and like it or not social protests are here to stay. As Robbert Muggah said of Brazil's Protests "There is little doubt that the protests have challenged the existing social order and alerted a new generation of youth to the unacceptability of the status quo". This holds true globally. http://huff.to/2gTbl60

The political paradigm has changed. Politicians and governments and the corporate world are proving once again to be slow learners, they are resisting change rather than embracing it, and without listening to their people's protests, they will be swept away by the winds of change.

Globally we are faced with climate change, the most serious peril that has faced humanity in its brief history. However, we are faced with more than climate change, there are the life threatening CO2 levels and looming sea level rise, resource shortages and an out of control population, as well as concerns for water and food security in the years to come.

As I say frequently “failing to plan is planning to fail”.

Humanity is today playing in the major leagues. We are in a sink or swim situation. If we can keep the planet habitable by mitigating and adapting to the changing climate, switching to alternative sources of energy such as solar, wind, geothermal, wave, ocean thermal and nuclear, sequester CO2 and provide the population with adequate supplies of water and food and bring the population under control, humanity may survive . Survival means, amongst all the issues above, learning to navigate successfully through a new political morass.

Warfare and conflict will also need to become a thing of the past, as climate change and energy may well exacerbate conflict situations. With a 9.5 billion global population by 2050 ensuring that everyone has adequate food and water could be problematic.

There is however, no ‘Plan B’ if we fail to resolve all the problems facing us.

When playing in the major leagues, there is no time out, there is no one that is going to offer help, let alone rescue us. Look around, the neighbourhood is somewhat sparsely populated and there are no other worlds on which humanity can survive. Even if there were other habitable worlds nearby they would in all probability belong to someone else. Neo-colonialism on an intergalactic scale may well not end well for humans.

There are, in all likelihood, other intelligent races out there somewhere, however, in the major leagues one survives on ones own. As a young civilization it is up to us to solve all our problems, to make peace among ourselves, to bring the population under control, to implement the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) and resolve the inequality that is partially responsible for the protests that are occuring around the world.

We must solve our own problems. As a young race we are as children, and as such we may not be able to solve our own problems. But solve them we must. If we are able to solve the situation facing us and make it to adulthood, in the galactic meaning of the world, we may then be introduced to the neighbors. If we do not make it to adulthood we will be just another minor statistic, a failure, a insignificant footnote in the universal history book.

Humanity needs an initiative to train our young people to become Stewards of Nature and the Environment. I envision this being done by involving and employing indigenous peoples around the world to introduce our youth, at the appropriate age, to indigenous philosophy and cultural understanding of the environment and what nature provides for mankind through ecosystem services.

Let us therefore be aspirational and rename our planet, the home of the human race and many other species, as the planet PEACE

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

World's Largest Oil Company, Saudi Aramco, Apparently Mulling $5 Billion Renewable Investment

World's Largest Oil Company, Saudi Aramco, Apparently Mulling $5 Billion Renewable Investment | CleanTechnica

The world’s largest oil company, Saudi Aramco, is apparently mulling over as much as $5 billion in renewable energy investments as part of plans to diversify from crude oil production, according to people with knowledge on the matter.

According to various reports, Saudi Arabia’s national petroleum and natural gas company, Saudi Aramco, is apparently considering as much as $5 billion worth of investments into renewable energy firms as part of larger plans to diversify their operations. According to one report from Bloomberg, “banks including HSBC Holdings Plc, JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Credit Suisse Group AG have been invited to pitch for a role helping Aramco identify potential acquisition targets and advising on deals.”

This should come as no surprise to anyone who has been watching the global energy market fluctuate over the last decade. The Gulf countries currently have as close to a monopoly as possible over the world’s oil resources, and dictate oil prices at their whim. But if natural gas reserves and renewable energy continue to put a dent in the need for their oil, then their businesses are going to stumble.

Subsequently, we have seen over the last few years big oil majors from the Middle East begin to diversify their portfolios, looking to renewable energy investments as a surefire way to keep themselves afloat in the long run.

Back in November of 2016, reports circulated regarding seven leading oil and gas majors looking to join forces to create a renewable energy investment fund for the development and promotion of renewable energy. The news was confirmed not long after with the creation of the Oil and Gas Climate Initiative (OGCI) which announced a $1 billion investment over the next ten years into renewable energy development. More

Tesla Needs Just 3 Months To Complete World's Largest Grid Storage Facility

Tesla Needs Just 3 Months To Complete World's Largest Grid Storage Facility

Tesla has just completed the world’s largest battery grid storage facility and did it all in about three months from start to finish. The installation consists of 396 Tesla Powerpack units, each with 16,000 lithium ion battery cells, for a total of 210 kilowatt-hours of capacity in each Powerpack. In total, this one 20 megawatt/80 megawatt-hour installation is equivalent to 15% of all the installed grid storage presently available in the entire world. More

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power

We have some exciting news to share. Recently, The Climate Reality Project Founder and Chairman Al Gore attended the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, for the debut of An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power. The film earned a “rapturous response” at its opening-night premiere screening on January 19.

At the festival, Vice President Gore joined an esteemed panel of climate innovators to discuss the role of storytelling in the climate movement. Vice President Gore described how engagement and inspiration through storytelling can encourage climate action alongside Jeff Skoll, founder and chairman of The Skoll Foundation, scientist and broadcaster Dr. David Suzuki, and Mohamed Nasheed, former president of the Maldives.

Read more about the hotly anticipated sequel to the influential, Oscar-winning documentary An Inconvenient Truth here:

Sundance Film Review: ‘An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power’ (Variety)
Sundance: ‘An Inconvenient Sequel’ Debuts to Rapturous Response (THR)
Sundance: Al Gore’s ‘Inconvenient Sequel’ has added timeliness with Trump (USA Today)
An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power’ Review: Al Gore Drops the Mic (Again) On Climate Change (IndieWire)
Al Gore is a climate change James Bond in urgent, exhilarating ‘Inconvenient Sequel’ (Mashable) More

Saturday, January 28, 2017

What if we gave universal income to people in biodiversity hotpots?

What if we gave universal income to people in biodiversity hotpots?

Writer and professor, Ashley Dawson, argues in his new book that capitalism is behind our current mass extinction crisis. But installing universal guaranteed income in biodiversity hotspots may be one remedy.

Around five hundred years ago, Europeans brought about the invention of modern day capitalism, a system that was rooted in colonialism, slavery and environmental destruction, according to Dawson.

“Capitalism is an economic system founded on ceaseless expansion,” Dawson, who specializes in Postcolonial studies, said. “It must grow at a compound rate or it will experience convulsive economic and social crises. The contradictions of this system are patently self-evident: an economic system based on infinite expansion must inevitably crash into the natural limits of finite ecosystems.”

Although capitalism has spread over the world in the last half millennium, Dawson argues it didn’t have to be this way.

“The global expansion of capitalism was not a deepening of some inherent human drive to environmental destruction, but a complete transformation in the foundation of human societies, the substitution of an ecocidal and genocidal system for the relatively sustainable social forms that preceded it.” More

Friday, January 20, 2017

Introducing RePlast! This alternative building material

ByFusion – Transforming Plastic

INTRODUCING REPLAST
The ByFusion machine is configured to produce RePlast blocks with the size and dimensions of common concrete blocks and can be used in a wide variety of infrastructure, development, and construction projects.

Characteristics of RePlast Block

Requires no glues or adhesives for use
Can contribute to LEED certification for construction and communities
95% lower Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GhG) compared to concrete block
Very high thermal and acoustic insulation


(http://www.byfusion.com/

X

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Saudi to launch $30-50 billion renewable energy program soon: minister

Saudi to launch $30-50 billion renewable energy program soon: minister | Reuters

Saudi Arabia will launch in coming weeks a renewable energy program that is expected to involve investment of between $30 billion and $50 billion by 2023, Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said on Monday.

Falih, speaking at an energy industry event in Abu Dhabi, said Riyadh would in the next few weeks start the first round of bidding for projects under the program, which would produce 10 gigawatts of power.


(http://uk.reuters.com/article/us-saudi-energy-renewables-idUKKBN1501HE?utm_content

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Humanity is now playing in the Major Leagues.

Humanity is now playing in the Major Leagues.

As I said in 2011, in 2016, and say again today in 2017, unless the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion protest, like the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe's Dakota Access Pipeline protest is successful, there will be casualties, political casualties and eventually millions of human casualties. Casualties from run-away climate change, sea level rise and from conflict. Not to mention from from difficulties in feeding an ever increasing population.

Continued burning of fossil fuel, driven mainly by capitalist greed, will eventually pollute the atmosphere and the environment to the degree that is will no longer support life. What future are we leaving to our children and grandchildren and future generations? There are those scientists like James Lovelock who argues that it is too 'little too late'. http://bit.ly/2irVnAY

Even if we did suspend the burning of petroleum and coal tomorrow our coastal cities and small island developing states would continue to experience sea level rise for hundreds of years. http://bit.ly/2irRxrC

We have had now had, besides the upcoming Trans Mountain pipeline expansion protest, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe's Dakota Access Pipeline protest, the election of president-elect Trump, OWS protests in 2011, protests in Brazil and Turkey, and like it or not social protests are here to stay. As Robbert Muggah said of Brazil's Protests "There is little doubt that the protests have challenged the existing social order and alerted a new generation of youth to the unacceptability of the status quo". This holds true globally. http://huff.to/2gTbl60

The political paradigm has changed. Politicians and governments and the corporate world are proving once again to be slow learners, they are resisting change rather than embracing it, and without listening to their people's protests, they will be swept away by the winds of change.

Globally we are faced with climate change, the most serious peril that has faced humanity in its brief history. However, we are faced with more than climate change, there are the life threatening CO2 levels and looming sea level rise, resource shortages and an out of control population, as well as concerns for water and food security in the years to come.

As I say frequently “failing to plan is planning to fail”.

Humanity is today playing in the major leagues. We are in a sink or swim situation. If we can keep the planet habitable by mitigating and adapting to the changing climate, switching to alternative sources of energy such as solar, wind, geothermal, wave, ocean thermal and nuclear, sequester CO2 and provide the population with adequate supplies of water and food and bring the population under control, humanity may survive . Survival means, amongst all the issues above, learning to navigate successfully through a new political morass.

Warfare and conflict will also need to become a thing of the past, as climate change and energy may well exacerbate conflict situations. With a 9.5 billion global population by 2050 ensuring that everyone has adequate food and water could be problematic.

There is however, no ‘Plan B’ if we fail to resolve all the problems facing us.

When playing in the major leagues, there is no time out, there is no one that is going to offer help, let alone rescue us. Look around, the neighbourhood is somewhat sparsely populated and there are no other worlds on which humanity can survive. Even if there were other habitable worlds nearby they would in all probability belong to someone else. Neo-colonialism on an intergalactic scale may well not end well for humans.

There are, in all likelihood, other intelligent races out there somewhere, however, in the major leagues one survives on ones own. As a young civilization it is up to us to solve all our problems, to make peace among ourselves, to bring the population under control, to implement the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) and resolve the inequality that is partially responsible for the protests that are occuring around the world.

We must solve our own problems. As a young race we are as children, and as such we may not be able to solve our own problems. But solve them we must. If we are able to solve the situation facing us and make it to adulthood, in the galactic meaning of the world, we may then be introduced to the neighbors. If we do not make it to adulthood we will be just another minor statistic, a failure, a insignificant footnote in the universal history book.

Humanity needs an initiative to train our young people to become Stewards of Nature and the Environment. I envision this being done by involving and employing indigenous peoples around the world to introduce our youth, at the appropriate age, to indigenous philosophy and cultural understanding of the environment and what nature provides for mankind through ecosystem services.

Nick Robson
The Climate War Room

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Will We Miss Our Last Chance to Save the World From Climate Change?


Will We Miss Our Last Chance to Survive Climate Change? - Rolling Stone

In the late 1980s, James Hansen became the first scientist to offer unassailable evidence that burning fossil fuels is heating up the planet. In the decades since, as the world has warmed, the ice has melted and the wildfires have spread, he has published papers on everything from the risks of rapid sea-level rise to the role of soot in global temperature changes – all of it highlighting, methodically and verifiably, that our fossil-fuel-powered civilization is a suicide machine. And unlike some scientists, Hansen was never content to hide in his office at NASA, where he was head of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York for nearly 35 years. He has testified before Congress, marched in rallies and participated in protests against the Keystone XL Pipeline and Big Coal (he went so far as to call coal trains "death trains"). When I ran into him at an anti-coal rally in Washington, D.C., in 2009, he was wearing a trench coat and a floppy boater hat. I asked him, "Are you ready to get arrested?" He looked a bit uneasy, but then smiled and said, "If that's what it takes."


(http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/features/will-we-miss-our-last-chance-to-survive-climate-change-w456917