A coalition of 40 Catholic institutions, from a number of developed countries, has been formed to divest from fossil fuels, urging others to do the same. (The Independent, 3rd October, 2017) Although not financially of great significance, this coalition has set the ball rolling for other organisations to pledge divestment from the energy which drives climate change.
The vision of a world without dirty energy is echoed here:
"Someday, after mastering the winds, the waves, the tides and gravity, we shall harness for God the energies of love, and then, for a second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire.
(Teilhard de Chardin)
The changes which occurred as a result of a 1 degree increase in temperature, have affected the whole ecology of the lake. The fish population, fish and human food sources are casualties of this change. The scientific team will keep a close eye on this ecosystem, which may yet have more surprises.
Source - University of Alberta
NASA and Conservation International are partnering to map ecosystems connected to and including Mekong River to develop tools for evaluating the impacts of such threats as well as potential interventions on the entire Mekong Basin.
Woody Turner, NASA’s program manager for ecological forecasting in the Science Mission Directorate’s Earth Science Division. “With these initiatives, we aim to create and test standardized analysis approaches that can then be applied to ecosystems around the world, once again demonstrating the benefits to society of NASA’s satellite data and research.”
(See report by Samson Reiny, NASA's Earth Science News Team)
In February 2017 (see our archive on this page) we wrote about plastic pollution. We use plastic everywhere, and much of it finds its way into the oceans, causing marine life untold problems. As an example, - Scientists at Ghent University in Belgium recently calculated people who eat seafood ingest up to 11,000 tiny pieces of plastic every year.
There is another complex relationship between people giving to charitable organisations, those living in dire poverty, the charities themselves which help vulnerable communities, and the Governments who give permission for charities to work in their countries.
firstly, the extent of poverty may be such that people have no means to migrate elsewhere, and so become trapped in ever poorer circumstances; secondly, those who do have the means will be more likely to migrate to improve their situation, rather than to wait for circumstances to get better. This latter may influence those countries who wish to move from a rural to an urban economy for greater prosperity. Migration as a solution to dire poverty is a problem which has to be faced across the world because of the effects of warming temperatures.
Individual extreme weather events bring home society’s vulnerabilities in coping with climate change. We cannot stop these events, but we need to be better prepared to deal with them. This is obvious to the NOAA as well as scientists around the world. The Paris Agreement and COP 23 attest to that.
Reducing the future risk of extreme weather means reducing greenhouse gas emissions - and working to minimise changes that are already under way.
Ironically the stable from which this report emerges (Global Change Research Act (GCRA) of 1990) seeks to develop and coordinate “a comprehensive and integrated United States research program which will assist the Nation and the world to understand, assess, predict, and respond to human-induced and natural processes of global change.”
Some in the White House, which approved the report, said "the climate is always changing" - which dismays many hoping for a change of heart from America. How can a report be accepted and denied at the same time?
As the conference continued, another 5 countries joined the alliance. The aim is to gain support from up to 50 countries by the time of the next summit, to be held in Katowice, Poland in 2018. The U.S. states of Washington and Oregon have also become members of the alliance.
This blog was started by the Monday Group - which was set up in April 2016. Each item contains a link back to its source, where more information can be found. Comments are welcome