Saturday 27 June 2020

Earth at 2° hotter will be horrific. Now here’s what 4° will look like. | David Wallace-Wells

Earth at 2° hotter will be horrific. Now here’s what 4° will look like. Watch the newest video from Big Think: Join Big Think Edge for exclusive videos:
  ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The best-case scenario of climate change is that world gets just 2°C hotter, which scientists call the "threshold of catastrophe". Why is that the good news? Because if humans don't change course now, the planet is on a trajectory to reach 4°C at the end of this century, which would bring $600 trillion in global climate damages, double the warfare, and a refugee crisis 100x worse than the Syrian exodus. David Wallace-Wells explains what would happen at an 8°C and even 13°C increase. These predictions are horrifying, but should not scare us into complacency. "It should make us focus on them more intently," he says. 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------- DAVID WALLACE-WELLS: David Wallace-Wells is a national fellow at the New America foundation and a columnist and deputy editor at New York magazine. He was previously the deputy editor of The Paris Review. He lives in New York City.

Six ways nature can protect us from climate change: CAA

This month, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) released a brand-new animation to explain the increasingly popular concept of ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA).

#heatwaves  #humanextinction
Hottest Years
Restoring and protecting nature is one of the greatest strategies for tackling climate change, but not just for the obvious reason that it sucks carbon out the air. Forests, wetlands, and other ecosystems act as buffers against extreme weather, protecting houses, crops, water supplies and vital infrastructure.

The strategy of using nature as a defence against climate impacts is called called ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) – in essence, look after nature and it will look after you.

Here are six ways that nature can defend us from climate change impacts:

Read the CAA article

#jailclimatecriminals  #humanextinction  #climatecrisis  #stopadani

Monday 22 June 2020

Government's COVID Commission manufacturing plan calls for huge public gas subsidies: ABC NEWS

methane gas industry calls for sunsidies
State bans on coal seam gas development would be scrapped and the Federal Government would underwrite gas prices and massively subsidise costs and investment for gas companies, under confidential plans for a "gas-led manufacturing recovery" post-COVID-19.

The draft plans, obtained by the ABC, call for the scrapping of "green and red tape" on gas development, including a relaxation of Australian standards for equipment used in gas infrastructure and a loosening of environmental regulations and approval processes.

They are set out in an interim report from the manufacturing taskforce of the National COVID Coordination Commission (NCCC).

The NCCC is a hand-picked team of business leaders and former bureaucrats set up by the Prime Minister's Office to shape the economic recovery from the virus and lockdown, and includes several members with strong links to the gas sector.

The manufacturing taskforce includes business representatives as well as union leaders from that sector.

Its draft report advocates "underwriting new [gas] supply with government balance sheets" to allow gas producers "to invest with confidence and new pipelines to be built to get the gas to markets".

Read the ABC NEWS article

Sunday 21 June 2020

Deep ocean waters warming at faster pace, new study finds: CBS News


The absorption of carbon dioxide by the planet’s oceans is increasing, with consequences for both marine species and for human economies that depend upon them. For World Oceans Day (June 8), “Sunday Morning” producer Sara Kugel talks with Oceana’s Jacqueline Savitz about how climate change affects our oceans, and with University of Queensland researcher Issac Brito-Morales, whose new study finds deep waters are warming at a faster pace than the ocean’s surface.Jun 8, 2020

Saturday 20 June 2020

World has six months to avert climate crisis, says energy expert : The Guardian

Climate Change is Real
The world has only six months in which to change the course of the climate crisis and prevent a post-lockdown rebound in greenhouse gas emissions that would overwhelm efforts to stave off climate catastrophe, one of the world’s foremost energy experts has warned.

“This year is the last time we have, if we are not to see a carbon rebound,” said Fatih Birol, executive director of the International Energy Agency.

Governments are planning to spend $9tn (£7.2tn) globally in the next few months on rescuing their economies from the coronavirus crisis, the IEA has calculated. The stimulus packages created this year will determine the shape of the global economy for the next three years, according to Birol, and within that time emissions must start to fall sharply and permanently, or climate targets will be out of reach.

“The next three years will determine the course of the next 30 years and beyond,” Birol told the Guardian. “If we do not [take action] we will surely see a rebound in emissions. If emissions rebound, it is very difficult to see how they will be brought down in future. This is why we are urging governments to have sustainable recovery packages.”

Read The Guardian article

Thursday 18 June 2020

Climate worst-case scenarios may not go far enough, cloud data shows : The Guardian

Clouds and climate change
Worst-case global heating scenarios may need to be revised upwards in light of a better understanding of the role of clouds, scientists have said.

Recent modelling data suggests the climate is considerably more sensitive to carbon emissions than previously believed, and experts said the projections had the potential to be “incredibly alarming”, though they stressed further research would be needed to validate the new numbers.

Modelling results from more than 20 institutions are being compiled for the sixth assessment by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which is due to be released next year.

Compared with the last assessment in 2014, 25% of them show a sharp upward shift from 3C to 5C in climate sensitivity – the amount of warming projected from a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide from the preindustrial level of 280 parts per million. This has shocked many veteran observers, because assumptions about climate sensitivity have been relatively unchanged since the 1980s.

Read the Guardian article

Wednesday 17 June 2020

Australia had more supersized bushfires creating their own storms last summer than in previous 30 years : The Guardian

A pyrocumulonimbus cloud generated by the intense Orroral Valley bushfire south of Canberra, 31 January 2020
A pyrocumulonimbus (pyroCB) cloud generated by the Orroral Valley bushfire south of Canberra.
 During the 2019-20 summer there was a record number of these events. Photograph: Brook Mitchell/Getty Images

There was a near doubling of the record of pyrocumulonimbus (pyroCB) storms, royal commission hears

Huge thunderstorm-type clouds called pyrocumulonimbus form over fires in particularly hot, dry and dangerous conditions and are capable of generating their own winds and lightning.

They were once considered “bushfire oddities” but last summer there was a “near doubling of the record of these events, in one event,” Prof David Bowman told the royal commission on Tuesday.

Read The Guardian story

Friday 12 June 2020

Unexpected future boost of methane possible from Arctic permafrost : NASA

climate permafrost melt
melting permafrost
By Ellen Gray,
NASA's Earth Science News Team

New NASA-funded research has discovered that Arctic permafrost’s expected gradual thawing and the associated release of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere may actually be sped up by instances of a relatively little known process called abrupt thawing. Abrupt thawing takes place under a certain type of Arctic lake, known as a thermokarst lake that forms as permafrost thaws.

The impact on the climate may mean an influx of permafrost-derived methane into the atmosphere in the mid-21st century, which is not currently accounted for in climate projections.

The Arctic landscape stores one of the largest natural reservoirs of organic carbon in the world in its frozen soils. But once thawed, soil microbes in the permafrost can turn that carbon into the greenhouse gases carbon dioxide and methane, which then enter into the atmosphere and contribute to climate warming.

Read the article

Tuesday 9 June 2020

As Protests Rage Over George Floyd’s Death, Climate Activists Embrace Racial Justice: Insideclimatenews

climate change is real
When New York Communities for Change helped lead a demonstration of 500 on Monday in Brooklyn to protest George Floyd's killing in Minneapolis, the grassroots group's activism spoke to a long-standing link between police violence against African Americans and environmental justice.

Elizabeth Yeampierre, executive director of UPROSE, Brooklyn's oldest Latino community-based organization, said she considers showing up to fight police brutality and racial violence integral to her climate change activism. 

Bronx Climate Justice North, another grassroots group, says on its website: "Without a focus on correcting injustice, work on climate change addresses only symptoms, and not root causes."

Read the Inside Climate News article

Monday 8 June 2020

Banking on gas will leave us stranded: SMH

#climatecrisis   #jailclimatecriminals
Covid-19 pandemic
"When I, and others, proposed gas as a transition fuel some 30 years ago, the price of solar was multiples of its current price, so gas was a quicker and more cost-effective means of achieving a reduction in emissions of some 40 to 60 per cent relative to coal.

However, as Chief Scientist Alan Finkel admitted in his recent address to the National Press Club, “the cost of producing electricity from wind and solar is now around $A50 per megawatt hour and [even with effective storage] the price … is lower than existing gas-fired electricity generation and similar to new-build, coal-fired electricity generation … and is set to drop even further”.

And with solar and wind technology proven, in the sense that financiers accept the risk without premium, why wouldn’t the government seek the development of grid-scale storage to achieve 100 per cent renewables? Clearly Morrison and his team have sold out to the likes of the Minerals Council and the fossil fuel lobby, whose influence is now conspicuous in the focus of the COVID recovery commission."

Read the complete SMH article 

Chief Scientist Dr Alan Finkel says gas fired hydrogen could reduce the risk associated with total reliance on renewable energy.

The suggestion of a pipeline linking large the gas fields off

Sunday 7 June 2020

More jobs in renewable-led COVID-19 economic recovery, EY report finds:ABC

Climate action to protect coral reefs and tourism  #jailclimatecriminals
Cooked coral reefs
A renewables-led economic recovery will create almost three times as many jobs as a fossil-fuel-led recovery, according to a report by economic consultancy Ernst and Young (EY).
The newly published report proposed six focus areas, which it said would simultaneously stimulate the economy and move Australia towards net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, in accordance with the 2015 Paris Agreement.

While the Federal Government has spoken of a "gas-fired" COVID-19 recovery, the EY report, commissioned by conservation group WWF Australia, argues replacing fossil fuels with renewable electricity and hydrogen will be better for the economy. 

"We can rebuild our economy in a way that sets up Australia for prosperity in a world hungry for a low-carbon future," WWF Australia energy transition manager Nicky Ison said.

Friday 5 June 2020

The Australien Government has made an ad about its Economic Recovery Plan, and it’s surprisingly honest and informative.

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Thursday 4 June 2020

Solar and wind’s stunning cost advantage sparks call for mass coal closure: RenewEconomy

bushfire climate emergency #jailclimatecriminals
climate emergency
A new global study has highlighted the growing advantage of wind and solar costs over new and even existing coal generators, so much so that a decision to replace 500GW (gigawatts) of old coal plant with new renewables would deliver annual savings of $23 billion ($A34 billion) and a timely $A1.4 trillion economic boost.

This is one of the headline findings of Renewable Power Generation Costs 2019, put together by the International Renewable Energy Agency, which notes that the cost of solar has fallen by 82 per cent over the past decade and onshore wind by 39 per cent.

This puts the cost of more than half the wind and solar farms installed across the globe in 2019 below the cheapest new coal plants, and below even many existing coal plants. Remember, this is a global average, so includes regions where the quality of the wind or solar resource may not be so good, and is for renewable generators completed in 2019.

Read the RenewEconomy story 


Monday 1 June 2020

Planet of the Humans : Let's just have a think...

A well researched rebuttal of the leading arguments in the film Planet of the Humans.

On the 50th Anniversary of the first ever Earth Day, Jeff Gibbs and Michael Moore released a documentary film free on You Tube. The film is called Planet of the Humans, and it proved quite popular. This week we review the movie and consider its implications for climate activism. Read Bill McKibben's full response to the original film in Rolling Stone here :

See a full bibliography of rebuttal articles here: JHAT on Population Growth JHAT on Renewables Recycling JHAT on Palm Oil JHAT on BioMass Help support and influence the growth of the Just Have a Think initiative here: Extra information received 11th May 2020 from Mike Bailey, one of the trustees of Solar Fest "For accuracy, Roy Butler was slightly off in the date he suggested to you. Based on the music being performed, this was shot in 2006, not 2005. In 2006, and every year, power was banked to the grid for weeks prior to the festival, with the surplus contributed to the farm. For the ten years SolarFest was at Forget Me Not Farm, we ran a surplus covering all of our usage on a net meter basis. By 2008 the festival was run entirely on solar, including a permanent array with battery backup. Also we shifted to LEDs for the light show to reduce consumption and no longer relied on the grid." View research links from this video here: FILMS FOR ACTION STATEMENT KETAN JOSHI ZEKE HAUSFATHER CATHY COWAN BECKER LEAH STOKES GREG ALAVAREZ - American Wind Energy Council PFPI SIERRA CLUB IRENA RICHARD YORK UNITED NATIONS OUR WORLD IN DATA PROJECT DRAWDOWN TOM ATHANASIOU ELECTRIC VEHICLES ADDENDUM: I said in the video "Forbes conceded ..." I have now learnt from another climate communicator, Adam Siegel, that this statement is a misleading representation of the motivation of the report's author. The cited/shown article was from one of Forbes online contributors called Silvio Marcacci. Silvio is a clean-energy communicator. His piece was spot on but it was not written in an attempt to 'represent' Forbes and I should not have used the phrase 'Forbes conceded'. Apologies to Silvio for this misrepresentation. #planetofthehumans  #michaelmoore #jeffgibbs

A First Dog on the Moon live action cartoon! Will the coronavirus save us from climate change?: Guardian Australia