Posts tagged with climate change

By the twentieth century, those on the margins of the city experienced the brunt of the city’s quest to grow. Even as late as 1900, New York City was a swampy environment dominated by wetlands. Over the course of the century, however, in part under the leadership of that master builder Robert Moses, New York’s once magnificent stock of wetlands came under attack. Roads, parks, and landfills all started to bear down on the marshy grounds. At the Flushing Meadows in Queens, the 2,400 acres of marshland in existence in 1900 were completely wiped out by 1966. In New York Harbor as a whole, more than 17,000 acres of wetland estimated to exist in the mid-1800s vanished during the golden age of American capitalism (1953–73) to make way for roads, landfills, and the expansion of Kennedy Airport.
Ted Steinberg - Davee Professor of History and Professor of Law at Case Western Reserve University, “Can NYC Survive the Sea?

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The one thing that the Boqueria fishmongers doesn’t sell is jellyfish (there’s not much demand for them in Spain, or anywhere else in Europe), though you can find them, dried to a plastic scab, in some Chinese supermarkets. There are those who say that jellyfish and plankton are all that your average wild seafood eater will have for supper by the end of the century—the very rich will likely still be able to pay up for ultra-rare food items. That’s because as the food chain’s intricate links collapse, the complex species will go first, leaving only the most simple. “The oceans [will] revert to the earliest days of multicellular life,” Roberts drily puts it. There’s a terrifying argument that jellyfish—who rather enjoy acidification—are already taking over the seas, if not the world.

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Nobody has a monopoly on what is a very hard problem, but I don’t have much patience for anyone who denies that this challenge is real. We don’t have time for a meeting of the Flat Earth Society. Sticking your head in the sand might make you feel safer, but it’s not going to protect you from the coming storm. And ultimately, we will be judged as a people, and as a society, and as a country on where we go from here.
President Barack Obama’s ‘We Need to Act' speech on climate change from June 26th, 2013.

I’m reviewing all of the research I’ve compiled for my carbon tax essay and i thought this speech was ambitious. I almost forgot about this speech.

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The IPCC’s 5th Comprehensive Climate Change Report is Out

Here’s some great pieces from this morning that summarize and explain what this is all about.

WTF is the IPCC?
by John Upton,

You’ve never even heard of the IPCC? This link will give you a primer.

What the IPCC Found: the Big News From the Climate Assessment
by John Upton,

John summarizes the 36 page summary to succinctly explain the findings and predictions.

IPCC Report: Strongest Case Yet for Human-Caused Global Warming
by Denise Chow,

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Americans are not a people who look backwards; we’re a people who look forward. We’re not a people who fear what the future holds; we shape it. What we need in this fight are citizens who will stand up, and speak up, and compel us to do what this moment demands.

Understand this is not just a job for politicians. So I’m going to need all of you to educate your classmates, your colleagues, your parents, your friends. Tell them what’s at stake. Speak up at town halls, church groups, PTA meetings. Push back on misinformation. Speak up for the facts. Broaden the circle of those who are willing to stand up for our future.

Convince those in power to reduce our carbon pollution. Push your own communities to adopt smarter practices. Invest. Divest. Remind folks there’s no contradiction between a sound environment and strong economic growth. And remind everyone who represents you at every level of government that sheltering future generations against the ravages of climate change is a prerequisite for your vote. Make yourself heard on this issue.

U.S. President Barack Obama, “We Need to Act" speech, June 25 2013

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by Michael Grunwald,

I think I could put forth a great argument why we should applaud everything Grunwald points out here AND still be able to argue why Obama - in a myriad other ways - has only ensured that global CO2 emissions, including the US’ will continue to be too high and more must be done immediately, worldwide, to address our climate/eco crisis.

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Fascinating interview

Key points

  • Climate Commission says 80 per cent of the world’s fossil fuel reserves will have to stay in the ground to avoid dangerous climate change
  • Report says forecasts made two years ago in the first Climate Commission report have become a reality and scientific consensus has grown
  • Global emissions will need to be trending downwards by the end of the decade for keep temperatures at a “manageable” level, the report says

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