During the 2018 United Nations Climate Change negotiations (the COP24), co-chairs of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change presented the latest scientific findings about what would happen if the world warms by 1.5ºC on average above pre-industrial levels. It was a special plenary session, meaning every nation was represented, as well as every international agency, … Continue reading The Day the World Stood Still
For many Americans, climate change has long seemed like something remote in space and time, a crisis that would affect people in other places a long time into the future. For skeptics, it seemed like we didn’t have to prioritize climate mitigation in order to build a secure and prosperous American republic, even when thinking decades into the future. We are only just now beginning to see that the destabilization of Earth’s climate system is bringing real impacts directly into our communities, in the here and now.
The Third National Climate Assessment, released last month, makes this clear: Climate change is happening now, and it is affecting our economy and our daily lives in disruptive ways, and costs of dealing with this ongoing destabilization will only increase over time. In fact, the report specifically finds that “The observed warming and other climatic changes are triggering wide-ranging impacts in every region of our country and throughout our economy.”
The new administration in Washington, DC, has taken notice: climate change is not about a mild 1º increase in temperature on any given day; it is about a sweeping destabilization of global climate patterns, which could undermine the entire layout of civilization across the world. Building the infrastructure necessary for implementing and sustaining a green … Continue reading Global Climate Destabilization is Major Security & Economic Threat
El ser humano se ha vuelto tan influyente en los proceso naturales que los científicos ahora temen que la naturaleza ha perdido capacidades vitales de resistencia
En una reunión de científicos europeos, en Estocolmo, el hombre que inventó el término ‘antropoceno’ para describir una nueva época geológica—en la que la influencia humana domina los proceso naturales—ha anunciado que el término ahora se está aplicando desde múltiples campos de estudio. La importancia real del término es que la información ecológica es cada vez más imprescindible para poder llevar a cabo las ambiciones humanas de una forma responsable y sostenible.
moving from negative externalities to mutual empowerment The environment is everything that surrounds us, everything that exists within us and feeds us and which we, and our activities, feed into. Negative externalities are economic impacts on third parties not contractually involved in a negotiation. They are called external, because they occur outside the context of … Continue reading Environment is Consequence
Global solutions to a global crisis: climate justice & the science of viability
Date: April 7, 2011 @ 2:30 pm
Location: First Floor Lounge, Falvey Memorial Library
For the third ClimateTalks roundtable event of the academic year, two faculty members will present advanced analysis of the climate crisis, from the historical, ethical and scientific points of view, and we will moderate a policy debate among students working on environmental issues.
At the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, we held the first of our series of Climate Talks, to explore with more depth and more detail some of the intricacies of the climate crisis, including social, philosophical and political, dynamics, and the way we frame our perception of global-scale phenomena. It was a construtive conversation, from four points of view, each of which was able to benefit from a kinship of interest, so that whether we were discussion environmental justice, political solidarity, economics and collaborative politics or Villanova’s ongoing commitment to reducing its carbon footprint, there were ways to deepen and broaden our understanding of each facet of the problem from each of the different perspectives.
The converging crises of carbon-induced climate destabilization and unsustainable transport-related costs and land-use are pushing global society toward a moment of major change, in which “fuel” as we know it will be less a matter of resourced-fuel combustion and more a matter of renewable clean electric power storage and delivery. The petroleum industry needs to adjust its business model to operate in a world where burning its prime resource is not the goal.
Until now, and even in the midst of the current ongoing energy debate, we are accustomed to viewing the onset of renewable energy sources and the interests of petroleum companies as diametrically opposed and politically incompatible. That idea is now easily seen as what it is: an ideological assumption based on a world-view informed by too few facts and too little understanding of complex interrelationships among resources, natural systems, and economic activity.