No Species Is an Island – Coming Clean: Michael Brune’s Blog

No Species Is an Island – Coming Clean: Michael Brune’s Blog.

For several years now, the U.S. Senate has proclaimed the third Friday in May to be Endangered Species Day. This year, the day has extra significance. The Endangered Species Act (the only thing standing between countless species and extinction) has come under unprecedented attack.

To paraphrase John Donne, “No species is an island.” Humans, too, depend on biodiversity and the richness of the web of life. Aldo Leopold, compared the loss of species to “throwing away, one-by-one, the engine parts of an airplane while flying.”

What’s more, the airplane’s facing some serious turbulence. All living things — including humans — face new and daunting challenges in a world where the climate has been disrupted. Habitats are shifting and pressures on species are increasing. You can’t preserve that web of life without also protecting the places it lives. We might think we’re protecting habitat for this or that creature — but in truth we’re doing it for all living things, not least ourselves. That’s the basis for the Sierra Club’s Resilient Habitats campaign, which is working to protect places where plants, animals, and people can survive and thrive.

Full article at above link.

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Food Prices Driven Up by Global Warming, Study Shows | Common Dreams

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Food Prices Driven Up by Global Warming, Study Shows | Common Dreams.

Full article at above link.

Global warming has already harmed the world’s food production and has driven up food prices by as much as 20% over recent decades, new research has revealed.

  An Indian farmer displays wheat after harvest on the outskirts of Jammu, India, Thursday, May 5, 2011. Global warming has already harmed the world’s food production and has driven up food prices by as much as 20% over recent decades, new research has revealed. (AP Photo/Channi Anand) The drop in the productivity of crop plants around the world was not caused by changes in rainfall but was because higher temperatures can cause dehydration, prevent pollination and lead to slowed photosynthesis.

Lester Brown, president of the Earth Policy Institute, Washington DC, said the findings indicate a turning point: “Agriculture as it exists today evolved over 11,000 years of reasonably stable climate, but that climate system is no more.” Adaptation is difficult because our knowledge of the future is not strong enough to drive new investments, he said, “so we just keep going, hoping for the best.”

“It is vital,” said Wolfram Schlenker, at Columbia University in New York and one of the research team. “If we continue to have the same seed varieties and temperatures continue to rise, then food prices will rise further. [Addressing] that is the big question.”

“We actually have enough calories to feed the world quite comfortably, the problem is meat is really inefficient,” as many kilogrammes of grain are needed to produce one kilogramme of meat, he said. “As countries get richer and have a preference for meat, which is more expensive, they price people in poorer countries out of the market.”

Global food prices have risen by about 200% in recent years, says Schlenker. Other causes of the rise are the increased demand for meat and the diversion of food into biofuels. Nonetheless, the researchers conclude that the negative impact on crops overall is “likely to be incurring large economic and health costs”.

1Sky and 350.org Merge under 350.org Banner to Unite Large-scale Powerful Grassroots Climate Movement | Common Dreams

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1Sky and 350.org Merge under 350.org Banner to Unite Large-scale Powerful Grassroots Climate Movement | Common Dreams.

More information at above link.

Grassroots groups 350.org and 1Sky today announced they will combine under the 350.org banner and dramatically expand their work. “In light of last night’s vote, it is more important than ever to unite and train a bigger, more powerful grassroots movement capable of attacking our corporate polluter opponents and fighting for a real clean energy future. This moment is our call to action,” said Liz Butler, Campaign Director of 1Sky.

In an essay announcing the merger, McKibben and new 350.org board member, author and activist Naomi Klein, wrote, “The idea is not to supplant the Washington green groups, but instead to give the whole movement new clout—enough clout to withstand the crushing power of oil money.”

How Climate Change Became A “Liberal Hoax”: Big Business vs. Science

Photograph of Noam Chomsky

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The sixth video in the series “Peak Oil and a Changing Climate” from The Nation and On The Earth Productions.

Linguist, philosopher and political activist Noam Chomsky talks about the Chamber of Commerce, the American Petroleum Institute and other business lobbies enthusiastically carrying out campaigns “to try and convince the population that global warming is a liberal hoax.

 

 

Seeing REDD on Climate Change | CommonDreams.org

Seeing REDD on Climate Change | CommonDreams.org.

Full article is available at the above link

As climate change negotiations come to a close in Cancun, Birginia Suarez-Pinlac is seeing red. The environmental lawyer from the Philippines is worried that a plan for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) constitutes a land grab, transferring natural wealth from the poor to the rich under the auspices of saving the planet.

We Need A New Type of Grassroots Movement: What Is Next For Climate Change Policy?

Past clean energy growth 1995-2007. Based on i...

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Daphne Wysham, from the Institute of Policy Studies, talks about dislike of Cap and Trade, AB32 and incentives for renewable sources of energy.

She says that we know the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has been “a funnel for a lot of oil, gas, and cola money; specifically to be fighting any sort of clean energy initiatives at the state, local, and national level”.

She also mentions that European polluters have thrown a lot of money into the US election, specifically to climate change deniers.

The Hope Shot?  Grassroot struggles ARE….I repeat ARE…succeeding!!  This includes Native Americans saying NO MORE COAL MINING and The Environmental Justice League saying an incinerator is not a renewable option.  There are also anti-fracking initiatives in the North East advocating clean water, Sierra Club has been taking on coal plants, and more!!

There are Environmental Justice issues that help to mobilize people.

US Researchers Fight to Reclaim Climate Science Message | CommonDreams.org

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The American Geophysical Union, the leading climate science organization, is due to launch a new web service offering journalists accurate scientific information about climate change. The AGU is also working on an iPhone app.

Those involved deny a political agenda.  The web service will address scientific questions only.

“Our goal is not to become partisan. But if we are going to respond to denialists’ claims which are unfounded in science then perhaps we are going to be viewed as going toe-to-toe with critics,” said John Abraham of St. Thomas University of Minnesota.

It is intended to run for 3 months using appx. 700 volunteers.

Progress for climate change took a hard hit during these elections and the science and politics are bound to intertwine.

A majority of the Republican newcomers deny the existence of man-made climate change or oppose regulation of greenhouse gas emissions, according to an analysis by Think Progress.