Rabbit Holes 4
Over the last few years climate scientists and activists have gone from calmly but sternly laying out their findings to shouting at the top fo their lungs that we're heading toward a very dangerous, very permanent cliff. With Arctic sea ice still not starting to freeze, and the Amazon on fire, we're facing the very real prospect of runaway climate change at least a decade earlier than the direst prediction just a few years ago.
It's very clear that we're running out of time.
As someone who has been writing and thinking about climate change for over a decade, I've been surprisingly caught off guard by the speed at which things have accelerated. Where it used to feel like we had decades to sort things out and that incremental change was sufficient to get mankind to the safety zone, it's now obvious that the game board has shifted and the goal is no longer about avoiding catastrophe, but rather wholesale annihilation. That's a very intense escalation of the stakes in the matter of a decade, and you'd be forgiven for feeling like your head is about to spin off your body.
But in a world that seems infinitely complex, the central question of our time has become refreshingly simple: you either fight for a world of equity and natural abundance for all, or you stand for extinction. There is no middle ground here.
The good news is that how you fight for a naturally abundant world is virtually limitless. As climate scientist Peter Kalmus puts it, we need a billion climate activists in the next few years, and not everyone needs to be doing the same thing. We're in a moment of spaghetti throwing, where we toss it all at the wall and see what sticks. There are no wrong answers (except burning fossil fuels, destroying old growth forests, etc.); this is a 'come as you are with what you got' kind of moment.
So, welcome. You belong here.
Looking for places to volunteer your time in Atlanta, Hands On Atlanta has you covered.
Ecoclipper is a professional shipping company which will offer emission free transport and travel, by making use of engine-less sailing ships.
"It is increasingly clear that averting ecological breakdown will require drastic changes to contemporary human society and the global economy embedded within it. On the other hand, the basic material needs of billions of people across the planet remain unmet. Here, we develop a simple, bottom-up model to estimate a practical minimal threshold for the final energy consumption required to provide decent material livings to the entire global population. We find that global final energy consumption in 2050 could be reduced to the levels of the 1960s, despite a population three times larger. However, such a world requires a massive rollout of advanced technologies across all sectors, as well as radical demand-side changes to reduce consumption – regardless of income – to levels of sufficiency. Sufficiency is, however, far more materially generous in our model than what those opposed to strong reductions in consumption often assume." Providing decent living with minimum energy: A global scenario.
This carpet company has always been an unlikely environmental leader. Now it’s going further.
"If you look back 60, 80, 100 years a lot of this area was open heathland and would have been managed and grazed. But as livestock farming became less economical the area has returned to woodland." Gardens help towns and cities beat countryside for tree cover.
'Climate grief': The growing emotional toll of climate change.
File this under "Duh": Greener play areas boost children’s immune systems, research finds.
"We've been living through what I've called a "deja news" cycle where the same stories appear again and again, but they are stripped of the context that reveals their full horror or impact. The latest iteration of this is Trump saying that he may not accept the election results and stoke violence if he doesn't win. This is literally the same thing that Trump — and Roger Stone — threatened in 2016, but the media is calling it "unprecedented" and making no reference to Trump's 2016 statements, despite that one of them was said at a debate and was widely covered at the time. This bizarre selective amnesia is tremendously damaging. The American people need chronology and context to understand the threat. Also, the fact that he threatened this in 2016 should have made officials prepared with a response should he threaten it again in 2020. They should have assumed he'd do it, this time with the backing of the state, and should have come up with a plan to combat it. Instead, they feign shock to avoid accountability. So we stand at a dangerous precipice, but it's made far more dangerous by the refusal of so many people to admit how we got here." Sarah Kendzior and Anand Giridharadas talk about how the US got to this horrifying moment.
For those looking to grow up and do better. LGBTQ2SIA+ Mini Glossary: Pocket List of Definitions.
"In the film, Kalmus reveals how he stopped trying to convert climate change deniers with facts and figures and instead embarked upon a mission to become the change he wanted to see in the world. Along the way, Kalmus shows how he brought together his head (the science), his hands (food growing, bicycling, and lifestyle change), and heart (meditation and community building), to find new direction in his life." Being the Change documentary by Peter Kalmus.
Oregon State University is offering a 10 week certificate course on permaculture design for less than $1000!
Confused on what the Green New Deal is? Sunrise Movement has a really good video and infographic explainer.
Find out whose stolen land you're living on right now with the Native Land Finder. I happen to be on the stolen land of the Tsalaguwetiyi people (AKA Cherokee).
"The following is a record of human evolution as it is understood now. I should say as I understand it now, not being a practitioner of any field involved or expert in anything vaguely related. In all cases, the mistakes and omissions are entirely my amateurish own." A not so brief history of the walking apes.
Meet your future, America. The United City-States of America, Mapped.