Clean, renewable energy is essential for sustainability. The main problems with getting to 100% renewable energy are that solar and wind energy spend on weather and time of day, and this makes some sort of storage important. Improved and less expensive batteries are often touted as the solution to the intermittency of truly renewable energy. Unfortunately, the demand for … [Read more...] about Clean energy, batteries, & mining
Although many climate topics are intertwined with energy use, this category may include some posts that relate to both. The climate category can also include discussion of how the climate is changing, causes other than energy, such as releases of methane, nitrous oxides, and most refrigerants; also deforestation and agriculture that is not organic/regenerative.
The shutdown of many businesses and activities during the coronavirus lockdown resulted in a significant reduction in fossil-fuel use, and the low oil prices make it cheaper to make plastic from fossil fuels instead of recycling plastic. And this leads to lower demand and lower prices for recyclables — in many cases, they now go straight from your recycling bin to the … [Read more...] about Connecting the Dots (1)
Excellent New Yorker article by Bill McKibben, titled 'What will it take to cool the planet'. Covers the Climate Interactive website that let's you see the effects of playing with different variables, a dive into the Gwich’in fight against plans for oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and the need for more descriptive visioning for the future. (All in all, a … [Read more...] about What will it take?
I hope you're doing well as we hunker down to weather the coronavirus pandemic. Unfortunately, the other, slower crises don't go dormant just because there's a pandemic raging. The climate emergency has slowed down a little while factories and shops are shuttered and people aren't driving nearly as much — but that respite will end when they 'reopen the economy'. Coronavirus … [Read more...] about The slower crises continue
I'm very pleased to be able to point to projects that students completed this summer — check out the impressive results! Emma Coppock [Lehigh '20], Marayna Dorsey [Shippensburg '20], and Joseph Yashur [Cedar Crest '20] completed a project on Sustainability for Cafés and Restaurants. In the process, they also helped a number of restaurants solve specific sustainability … [Read more...] about Summer interns’ work!
While we believe that the most important causes of global warming & the resulting climate change are systemic, it's also true that individual actions can have a significant impact. If you want to see ways you can reduce your own carbon footprint, see George Washington University's public health program which has created an online information center for 'Realistic Ways … [Read more...] about Individual Actions to Reduce Climate Impact
Once again, Greta Thunberg speaks out to government 'leaders' who are guilty of failing to act on global warming and climate change. Read her April 23 address to Parliament. Their failure to act parallels the failure of politicians in most 'developed' countries. (Just look at the idiotic responses to the 'Green New Deal' proposal in the US!) I am impressed by the … [Read more...] about Thanks again, Greta
I think we all owe a debt of thanks to Greta Thunberg, a 15-year-old from Sweden, for her speech calling out 'leaders' for their failure to lead! Some excerpts from her remarks (at COP-24 in Katowice, Poland): We can no longer save the world by playing by the rules, because the rules have to be changed.So we have not come here to beg the world leaders to care for … [Read more...] about Thank you, Greta!
As an intern for Alliance, I was able to meet and hear the concerns of local officials and important community stakeholders. We discussed issues and gathered advice from a diverse array of people like city councilmen, NGO leaders, and company executives. I learned of the extensive detail and nuance that is necessary to create an effective sustainability assessment. It was a … [Read more...] about My summer internship: Sustainability Impact Assessment
Some municipalities require impact assessments for proposed projects, but they often are inadequate or focus primarily on economic considerations. An integrated and comprehensive sustainability impact assessment is essential to understanding the range of inter-related impacts a project will have on climate change, community, health, environment, and economy. This summer, a … [Read more...] about Peter’s blog: ‘Development can be sustainable — or destructive’