Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development
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Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development
Sustainable development is about acting now with an awareness of the future.
Curated by Kim Flintoff
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Sea the possibilities: to fight climate change, put seaweed in the mix

Sea the possibilities: to fight climate change, put seaweed in the mix | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
The next stage of humanity’s fight to reduce greenhouse emissions may revolve around seaweed, according to tonight’s episode of ABC’s Catalyst, presented by Professor Tim Flannery, which asks the question “can seaweed save the world?”

With the help of me and colleagues around the world, the documentary explores seaweed’s enormous potential to reduce greenhouse gases and draw CO₂ out of the atmosphere. In the case of seaweed, that could include giant kelp farms that de-acidify oceans, or feeding algae to cattle and sheep to dramatically reduce their methane emissions.
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What if jobs are not the solution but the problem? – James Livingston | Aeon Essays

What if jobs are not the solution but the problem? – James Livingston | Aeon Essays | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
Work means everything to us Americans. For centuries – since, say, 1650 – we’ve believed that it builds character (punctuality, initiative, honesty, self-discipline, and so forth). We’ve also believed that the market in labour, where we go to find work, has been relatively efficient in allocating opportunities and incomes. And we’ve believed that, even if it sucks, a job gives meaning, purpose and structure to our everyday lives – at any rate, we’re pretty sure that it gets us out of bed, pays the bills, makes us feel responsible, and keeps us away from daytime TV.

These beliefs are no longer plausible. In fact, they’ve become ridiculous, because there’s not enough work to go around, and what there is of it won’t pay the bills – unless of course you’ve landed a job as a drug dealer or a Wall Street banker, becoming a gangster either way.
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How Scotland is pioneering a new way to fight climate change

How Scotland is pioneering a new way to fight climate change | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
The world’s first full-scale floating wind farm is being moved into position 15 miles off the north-east coast of Scotland.
Wind power has been embraced by the Celtic country, and once complete the new Hywind turbines will provide power for 20,000 homes.
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The world’s first full-scale floating wind farm is being moved into position 15 miles off the north-east coast of Scotland.

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Hybrid World

Hybrid World | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
Hybrid World Adelaide is a digital playspace for all ages and expertise.

Unlike anything ever held in South Australia, HWA will transform the historic former car assembly plant at Tonsley into a digital hub of mind-expanding interactive technology for five days in October. Come see, touch and play with technologies of the future.

Whether you want to be a YouTube star, fly a drone or play interactive zombie games, Hybrid World Adelaide will have something for you and your family.

Beyond the public events, there’s an industry conference, and a hands-on lab to mentor and develop selected tech projects.
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Commonwealth Bank shareholders sue over 'inadequate' disclosure of climate change risks

Commonwealth Bank shareholders sue over 'inadequate' disclosure of climate change risks | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it

Activists unveil a banner in Sydney in May protesting coal financing by the Commonwealth Bank. Shareholders say the bank’s 2016 directors’ report did not adequately inform investors of climate change risks. Photograph: Dean Lewins/AAP


In world-first case, shareholders’ move comes after the Australian financial regulator warned climate change poses material risk to entire financial system

The embattled Commonwealth Bank is being sued by shareholders for what they say is a failure to properly disclose the risks to the business posed by climate change.

The case will be the first anywhere in the world to test in court how companies are required to disclose climate change-related risks in their annual reports, and follows calls by shareholders, regulators and central banks around the world for greater clarity.

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Solar is now the most popular form of new electricity generation worldwide

Solar is now the most popular form of new electricity generation worldwide | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
Solar has become the world’s favourite new type of electricity generation, according to global data showing that more solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity is being installed than any other generation technology.

Worldwide, some 73 gigawatts of net new solar PV capacity was installed in 2016. Wind energy came in second place (55GW), with coal relegated to third (52GW), followed by gas (37GW) and hydro (28GW).
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The Intersectionality of Unruly Teachers – Teaching in Trump’s America – Medium

The Intersectionality of Unruly Teachers – Teaching in Trump’s America – Medium | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
Public school teachers see America every day. When teachers get loud, it is for good reason. On Saturday, July 22, 2017, about 1,500 unruly teachers marched on Washington D.C., and many others did so in cities across the United States. This intersection of public school teacher’s protests with the issues in the larger society are both significant and telling. Make no mistake, teacher’s issues are everyone’s issues.
Kim Flintoff's insight:

Public school teachers see America every day. When teachers get loud, it is for good reason. On Saturday, July 22, 2017, about 1,500 unruly teachers marched on Washington D.C., and many others did so in cities across the United States. This intersection of public school teacher’s protests with the issues in the larger society are both significant and telling. Make no mistake, teacher’s issues are everyone’s issues.

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‘No job immune from automation’ – report

‘No job immune from automation’ – report | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
A new report released today by the Foundation of Young Australians (FYA) has revealed that in the future no job will be immune to automation.

The New Work Smarts report analysed over 20 billion hours of work completed by 12 million Australian workers across 400 occupations each year to predict the skills and capabilities that will matter most in 2030.
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A Team of Scientists Just Made Food From Electricity — and it Could be the Solution to World Hunger

A Team of Scientists Just Made Food From Electricity — and it Could be the Solution to World Hunger | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
IN BRIEF

A Finnish research team has taken a step towards the future of food by developing a method for producing food from electricity. If scaling it up proves to be successful, it could be a tool in the fight against world hunger and climate change.
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How to talk climate change with the kids - TAKE2 - Pledge Program

How to talk climate change with the kids - TAKE2 - Pledge Program | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
Climate change can seem a big, scary beast at times – even for us grown-ups. But what about our children? How should we talk to them about it - if at all?

Melbourne Uni Honorary Professorial Fellow Ann Sanson has spoken to TAKE2 about including the kids in the conversation and empowering them to be part of the solution.

Apart from the very young, most children know something about climate change. And of those that are aware, many are worried by it.   
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2017 is so unexpectedly warm it is freaking out climate scientists

2017 is so unexpectedly warm it is freaking out climate scientists | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it

This matters because when a month — or six-month period — sees record high global temperatures in the absence of an El Niño, that is a sign the underlying global warming trend is stronger than ever. The latest NOAA report is “a reminder that climate change has not, despite the insistence of climate contrarians ‘paused’ or even slowed down,” Mann said.


Bottom line: Human-caused global warming continues at a dangerous pace, and only human action to slash carbon pollution can stop it.

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Bottom line: Human-caused global warming continues at a dangerous pace, and only human action to slash carbon pollution can stop it.

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Why the climate is more sensitive to carbon dioxide than weather records suggest

Why the climate is more sensitive to carbon dioxide than weather records suggest | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
A new analysis suggests that weather records have not yet had time to capture the full effects of climate change, some of which are likely to take centuries to play out.
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We have three years to stop the worst of climate change: experts

We have three years to stop the worst of climate change: experts | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
We have three years to stop the worst effects of climate change through an unprecedented and coordinated global effort, prominent experts are now warning.

Ecosystems have been collapsing, ice sheets have been disappearing, and coral reefs have been dying from the heat.

But global emissions remained stable over the past three years while economies grew, showing it is possible to mitigate the worst effects of climate change, a letter published in Nature journal on Wednesday said.

The authors said we have until 2020 to stop unrelenting heatwaves, droughts and sea-level rise.
Kim Flintoff's insight:
We have three years to stop the worst effects of climate change through an unprecedented and coordinated global effort, prominent experts are now warning. 
 
Ecosystems have been collapsing, ice sheets have been disappearing, and coral reefs have been dying from the heat. 
 
But global emissions remained stable over the past three years while economies grew, showing it is possible to mitigate the worst effects of climate change, a letter published in Nature journal on Wednesday said. 
 
The authors said we have until 2020 to stop unrelenting heatwaves, droughts and sea-level rise.
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Richard Florida Is Sorry

Richard Florida Is Sorry | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it

For years, Richard Florida preached the gospel of the creative class. His new book is a mea culpa.

Richard Florida, one of the most influential thinkers about cities in postwar America, wants you to know that he got almost everything about cities wrong.

If you live in an urban center in North America, the United Kingdom, or Australia, you are living in Richard Florida’s world. Fifteen years ago, he argued that an influx of what he called the “creative classes” — artists, hipsters, tech workers — were sparking economic growth in places like the Bay Area. Their tolerance, flexibility, and eccentricity dissolved the rigid structures of industrial production and replaced them with the kinds of workplaces and neighborhoods that attracted more young people and, importantly, more investment.

His observations quickly formed the basis of a set of breezy technical solutions. If decaying cities wanted to survive, they had to open cool bars, shabby-chic coffee shops, and art venues that attract young, educated, and tolerant residents. Eventually, the mysterious alchemy of the creative economy would build a new and prosperous urban core.

Today, even Florida recognizes that he was wrong. The rise of the creative class in places like New York, London, and San Francisco created economic growth only for the already rich, displacing the poor and working classes. The problems that once plagued inner cities have moved to the suburbs.

Kim Flintoff's insight:
For years, Richard Florida preached the gospel of the creative class. His new book is a mea culpa.

Richard Florida, one of the most influential thinkers about cities in postwar America, wants you to know that he got almost everything about cities wrong.
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Matt Damon: We need to talk about toilets – World Economic Forum – Medium

Matt Damon: We need to talk about toilets – World Economic Forum – Medium | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
Hollywood star Matt Damon is trying to improve sanitation in developing countries, one toilet at a time.
Perhaps more commonly heard discussing his latest blockbuster movie than the perils of open defecation, Damon’s A-list status is helping shine some light on an issue that affects 2.4 billion people worldwide.
As co-founder of Water.org, a non-profit organization that promotes access to safe water and sanitation, the actor is providing funding to some of the world’s poorest people so they can build toilets.
Not only that, he’s also prepared to enroll the services of some of his celebrity friends to promote a cause that’s close to his heart.
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Hollywood star Matt Damon is trying to improve sanitation in developing countries, one toilet at a time.

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The Madhouse Effect: this is how climate denial in Australia and the US compares

The Madhouse Effect: this is how climate denial in Australia and the US compares | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
While climate denialism impedes policymaking in both the US and Australia, there are key differences in their political and public cultures.
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 Step into the future at Hybrid World Adelaide

 Step into the future at Hybrid World Adelaide | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
For the first time in Australia -- we'll get a peek at the potential evolution of technology. The digital world will entwine with reality, through a vast public program for all generations, and an industry facing, hands-on development lab for new inventions.

Everyone from digital-savvy experts and industry professionals, to gamers, YouTubers and drone enthusiasts will get a glimpse of this exciting new world.

 

While the public program is free of charge, conference tickets are currently on sale on the HWA website - tickets to the public workshops are not yet in the market. 

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Globalization, Open Access, and the Democratization of Knowledge

Globalization, Open Access, and the Democratization of Knowledge | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
In many ways, developments in information and communication technology (ICT) and open access have disrupted inequities in academic publishing and global information flows. However, efforts to fully globalize and democratize information demand intentional efforts to involve and center perspectives that traditional forms of communication have marginalized. Information professionals and the systems they create must proactively attend to developing equitable and inclusive information systems. Initiatives such as SHARE and FORCE11, discussed below, indicate promise for fulfilling the vision and promise of democratized knowledge.
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Australia needs dozens more scientists to monitor climate properly, report says

Australia needs dozens more scientists to monitor climate properly, report says | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
Australia is falling short in its ability to monitor the climate, potentially leaving farmers and other groups unable to access crucial information about rainfall, droughts and floods, the Australian Academy of Science has warned.

A review of Australia’s climate science capability, released today, recommends that Australia needs to recruit an extra 77 full-time climate science staff over the next four years, on top of the current 420, to meet the demand for detailed weather and climate information.

Without these resources, Australia risks being unable to provide accurate information to those who need it, said UNSW oceanographer Trevor McDougall, who led the review.

That could include being unable to predict accurately the changes to rainfall patterns in farming regions such as the Murray-Darling Basin – with potentially serious consequences for farmers, Professor McDougall said.

Although the review says Australia is strong in some areas, such as studying extreme weather events, it identified several key shortcomings, particularly in climate modelling.
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Seeking A Diploma For The End Of The World – Age of Awareness – Medium

Seeking A Diploma For The End Of The World – Age of Awareness – Medium | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
As I prepare to walk at graduation and receive my diploma, I can’t help but think about the challenges and perils waiting for me in adulthood. I’m an art student you see, or a Film & Video major really. To survive in the near future I will most likely have to work a shitty part time job or two in order to supplement my creative interests. But even if my degree were in a more traditional field (STEM, business, political science, etc.), I don’t think there’s much time for me to make something out of myself in the world as we know it today. Last year globally-averaged temperatures were 1.78 degrees Fahrenheit (0.99 degrees Celsius) warmer than the mid-20th century mean. This makes 2016 the third year in a row to set a new record for high global average surface temperatures; and at the rate we’re going, with an administration in the United States that avidly denies the legitimacy of this catastrophe, it doesn’t look like global warming trends are changing anytime soon.
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What your job will look like in 2030

What your job will look like in 2030 | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
Doctors will spend far fewer hours diagnosing patients, accountants will do less maths, and direct instruction and grading will no longer be a major part of teaching, according to a new report.

Most jobs will be almost unrecognisable by 2030, and a new report paints a picture of what a typical day in the office will look like for children who are currently starting primary school.
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New diesel and petrol cars banned from UK roads by 2040

New diesel and petrol cars banned from UK roads by 2040 | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
Diesel drivers on congested roads in towns and cities across the UK face new pollution taxes under Government plans which will ultimately herald the end of the traditional car.

Ministers have identified 81 major roads in 17 towns and cities where urgent action is required because they are in breach of EU emissions standards, putting people's health at risk.

The Government will also commit to banning the sale of all new diesel and petrol cars by 2040 in a bid to encourage people to switch to electric and hybrid vehicles.
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Energy efficiency is a huge money saver — but the Trump administration is against it

Energy efficiency is a huge money saver — but the Trump administration is against it | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
A leaked draft study of the electric grid requested by Energy Secretary Rick Perry found that federal energy efficiency policies are in the process of saving U.S. consumers and businesses more than a half trillion dollars.
Meanwhile, the new administration is halting energy efficiency policies and gutting funding for energy efficiency improvements for American homes. Perry’s department is currently being sued by 11 states for stalling efficiency mandates for air conditioners and other high-energy products.
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The cynical and dishonest denial of climate change has to end: it's time for leadership | Gerry Hueston

The cynical and dishonest denial of climate change has to end: it's time for leadership | Gerry Hueston | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
The effects of climate change are happening now. This looks like sea-level rise and coastal flooding. It looks like record-breaking temperatures and worsening extreme weather events. There is widespread business and public support for action as well as widespread acknowledgment that inaction will leave us increasingly exposed to social and economic disruption.

Strong leadership is vital. Whether we get carrots and sticks or both, industry needs a political consensus that policy arising from the Finkel Review process will stand the test of time and changes of government.

Procrastination is not a good option. It’s time to take responsibility for our past decade of avoidant politicking. Each day that goes by without policy settings that invite investment in large-scale renewables only makes the inevitable transition harder.
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A new approach to emissions trading in a post-Paris climate

A new approach to emissions trading in a post-Paris climate | Futures Thinking and Sustainable Development | Scoop.it
New Zealand is a trailblazer for emissions trading, which could help drive a low-emission transformation, both domestically and overseas, in a post-Paris world.
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