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Climate Code Red: If we need a war footing to rebuild the physical economy, why can't we talk about it?

Climate Code Red: If we need a war footing to rebuild the physical economy, why can't we talk about it? | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

At the end of last year a very useful discussion was opened up by a number of climate scientists in different parts of the world calling for climate change action to be put onto a war footing. 
    John Connor, CEO of the Climate Institute, questioned the desirability of pursuing this approach. But how valid was John's critique? And is there a better response to the call from the climate scientists to go onto a war footing?

This is what John said in the Climate Institute's 13 December 2012 newsletter (emphasis added):

If you are not scared or getting scared, you are not paying attention. Yet another rollercoaster year for climate policy and investment is ending as a remarkable chorus of conservative voices from the World Bank, the World Meteorological Organisation, the International Energy Agency and others state that climate change is happening and on track to get much worse in terms of danger and expense. These are realities, not just risks.

     That the UN talks in Doha didn’t reflect that urgency was frustrating.
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Human domination of the biosphere: Rapid discharge of the earth-space battery foretells the future of humankind

Human domination of the biosphere: Rapid discharge of the earth-space battery foretells the future of humankind | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

Earth is a chemical battery where, over evolutionary time with a trickle-charge of photosynthesis using solar energy, billions of tons of living biomass were stored in forests and other ecosystems and in vast reserves of fossil fuels. In just the last few hundred years, humans extracted exploitable energy from these living and fossilized biomass fuels to build the modern industrial-technological-informational economy, to grow our population to more than 7 billion, and to transform the biogeochemical cycles and biodiversity of the earth. This rapid discharge of the earth’s store of organic energy fuels the human domination of the biosphere, including conversion of natural habitats to agricultural fields and the resulting loss of native species, emission of carbon dioxide and the resulting climate and sea level change, and use of supplemental nuclear, hydro, wind, and solar energy sources. The laws of thermodynamics governing the trickle-charge and rapid discharge of the earth’s battery are universal and absolute; the earth is only temporarily poised a quantifiable distance from the thermodynamic equilibrium of outer space. Although this distance from equilibrium is comprised of all energy types, most critical for humans is the store of living biomass. With the rapid depletion of this chemical energy, the earth is shifting back toward the inhospitable equilibrium of outer space with fundamental ramifications for the biosphere and humanity. Because there is no substitute or replacement energy for living biomass, the remaining distance from equilibrium that will be required to support human life is unknown.

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Interactive Graphic: What Do Your State’s Emissions Look Like? | World Resources Institute

Interactive Graphic: What Do Your State’s Emissions Look Like? | World Resources Institute | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
A new data visualization reveals that only 10 states are responsible for nearly 50 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.
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What You Don't Understand about Suicide Attacks

What You Don't Understand about Suicide Attacks | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Whether in Chattanooga or Afghanistan, the attacks are driven more by psychological problems than ideology—which hints at a solution
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Simple Cooking Method Flushes Arsenic out of Rice

Simple Cooking Method Flushes Arsenic out of Rice | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Preparing rice in a coffee machine can halve levels of the naturally occurring but toxic substance
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Rethinking Algae Biomass Production

Rethinking Algae Biomass Production | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Algae is a wonder of the natural world. It’s a highly adaptable organism, one that grows in both fresh and saltwater and can thrive in some of the harshest conditions. For that reason, hundreds of strains of algae exist across the globe. If you find a place with water, sunlight and the right mix of nutrients, it’s very likely you’ll also find algae.
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Mish's Global Economic Trend Analysis: Prolonged Drought and Wildfires? Massive CA Fire Jumps 20,000 Acres Overnight; Water Outing Website; 240-Year Drought?

Mish's Global Economic Trend Analysis: Prolonged Drought and Wildfires? Massive CA Fire Jumps 20,000 Acres Overnight; Water Outing Website; 240-Year Drought? | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Financial blog on news and global macroeconomic themes regarding the world economy. The blog7quot;s primary focus pertains to inflation, deflation, and hyperinflation, especially currencies, gold, silver, crude, oil, energy and precious metals. Other macro discussion topics include interest rates, China, commodities, the US dollar, Euro, Yuan, Yen, stagflation, emerging markets, politics, Congressional and statewide policy decisions that affect the US and global markets.
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6 Things Every American Should Know About the Clean Power Plan - Renewable Energy World

6 Things Every American Should Know About the Clean Power Plan - Renewable Energy World | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

President Obama unveiled the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Clean Power Plan—a historic step to cut the carbon pollution driving climate change. Here are six key things every American should know

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Listen Up: Vampires Sucking Power from your House

Listen Up: Vampires Sucking Power from your House | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Here’s a nightmare for you: at night, when you’re asleep and you think things are quiet, there are vampires sucking power out of your house and increasing your electric bill. The fact of the matter is that every plugged in electrical device in your home uses a small amount of standby power -- even if you think these devices are off.
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Ocean changes are affecting salmon biodiversity and survival

Ocean changes are affecting salmon biodiversity and survival | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The biodiversity of two Northern Pacific salmon species may be at risk due to changes in ocean conditions at the equator, reports a study by the University of California, Davis.
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Even moderate picky eating can have negative effects on children's health

Even moderate picky eating can have negative effects on children's health | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Picky eating among children is a common but burdensome problem that can result in poor nutrition for kids, family conflict, and frustrated parents.
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Heating with the sun

Heating with the sun | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Solar-Active-Houses heat themselves using heat collectors and water tanks. However, no one had conducted an objective assessment of how efficiently they do so. Fraunhofer researchers put some of these solar houses to the test, identified where there was room for improvement and laid the scientific groundwork for this housing concept.
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Researchers confront weather extremes through infrastructure resiliency

Researchers confront weather extremes through infrastructure resiliency | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
South Florida's predisposition to weather extremes renders the region's infrastructure acutely vulnerable. But weather extremes are not exclusive to South Florida. The Urban Resilience to Extreme Weather-Related Events Sustainability Research Network (UREx SRN), a newly formed team of researchers, is addressing these challenges on an international scale. FIU biologists Evelyn Gaiser, John Kominoski and Tiffany Troxler are part of the 50-member team of researchers.
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Septic tanks aren't keeping poo out of rivers and lakes

Septic tanks aren't keeping poo out of rivers and lakes | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The notion that septic tanks prevent fecal bacteria from seeping into rivers and lakes simply doesn't hold water, says a new Michigan State University study.
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How Ethiopia Went from Famine Crisis to Green Revolution | World Resources Institute

How Ethiopia Went from Famine Crisis to Green Revolution | World Resources Institute | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
A new documentary tells the story of how Ethiopia’s people restored vast areas of degraded land to productivity.
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What Global Warming Means for 4 of Summer's Worst Pests

What Global Warming Means for 4 of Summer's Worst Pests | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Mosquito season is getting longer among other buzz kills
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Another Northern White Rhino Dies--and Then There Were 4

Another Northern White Rhino Dies--and Then There Were 4 | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The slow countdown to extinction continues for this victimized species
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Gut microbes affect circadian rhythms in mice

Gut microbes affect circadian rhythms in mice | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
A study including researchers from Argonne National Laboratory and the Univ. of Chicago found evidence that gut microbes affect circadian rhythms and metabolism in mice. We know from studies on jet lag and night shifts that metabolism is linked to the body’s circadian rhythms. These rhythms, regular daily fluctuations in mental and bodily functions, are communicated and carried out via signals sent from the brain and liver.
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Why A Carbon Tax Would Be The Ultimate Energy Game-Changer | OilPrice.com

Why A Carbon Tax Would Be The Ultimate Energy Game-Changer | OilPrice.com | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Subsidies are often at the core of any fossil fuel vs. renewable energy debate, but would a carbon tax break the deadlock and settle the debate once and for all?
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Model shows how surge in wealth inequality may be reversed

Model shows how surge in wealth inequality may be reversed | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
(Phys.org)—For many Americans, the single biggest problem facing the country is the growing wealth inequality. Based on income tax data, wealth inequality in the US has steadily increased since the mid-1980s, with the top 10% of the population currently owning about 73% of the country's wealth. In a new paper published in PLOS ONE, researchers have quantitatively analyzed several of the major factors that affect wealth inequality dynamics, and found that the most crucial factor associated with the recent surge in wealth inequality since the '80s has been the dramatic decrease in personal savings, followed closely by a large increase in the dominance of capital income over labor income.
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The Future of Renewable Power in Mexico

The Future of Renewable Power in Mexico | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The abundance of diverse renewable energy resources, growing demand for power, macroeconomic stability, and historically high electricity prices continue to position Mexico as one of the most attractive destinations for investments in renewable power generation.  Despite enjoying some of the highest wind and insolation levels in the world, Mexico has yet to develop most of the potential of its renewable energy sources.  As of 2013, thermal sources represented 75 percent of Mexico’s installed capacity, followed by hydropower generation, which accounted for 19 percent of total capacity, while other renewable sources, such as wind, solar and geothermal energy represented less than 6 percent of electricity generation in Mexico.
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World’s First Integrated Geothermal and Biomass Plant Goes Online

World’s First Integrated Geothermal and Biomass Plant Goes Online | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

Enel Green Power has announced the completion of a 5 megawatt (MW) biomass power plant in Italy’s Tuscany region that integrates biomass with geothermal steam generation. A first of its kind, the newly constructed biomass plant will use locally sourced virgin forest organic matter and a “super-heater” boiler to increase steam temperatures at the nearby 13-MW Cornia 2 geothermal plant. Geothermal steam temperatures entering the Cornia 2 plant will be raised from 300 degrees to over 700 degrees (Fahrenheit). The result, according to Enel Green Power, will be an increase in the geothermal plant’s net electricity generation capacity.

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Researchers investigate effect of environmental epigenetics on disease and evolution

Researchers investigate effect of environmental epigenetics on disease and evolution | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Washington State University researchers say environmental factors are having an underappreciated effect on the course of disease and evolution by prompting genetic mutations through epigenetics, a process by which genes are turned on and off independent of an organism's DNA sequence.
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Climate change means we can't keep living in glass houses

Climate change means we can't keep living in glass houses | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
How do we go about designing buildings today for tomorrow's weather? As the world warms and extreme weather becomes more common, sustainable architecture is likely to mean one major casualty: glass.
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EU hails Obama clean power plan as 'genuine' effort to cut emissions

EU hails Obama clean power plan as 'genuine' effort to cut emissions | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The EU on Monday hailed US President Barack Obama's clean power plan as "a positive step" to cut carbon emissions ahead of a global climate summit in Paris.
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Earthquake early warning system moves closer to reality

Earthquake early warning system moves closer to reality | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The West Coast earthquake early warning system moved a step closer to reality this week as the U.S. Geological Survey awarded $4 million to the University of California, Berkeley, and three other universities to turn the current demonstration system, called ShakeAlert, into a robust prototype that can be used broadly by cities, industries, utilities and transportation networks in California, Oregon and Washington.
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Glaciers melt faster than ever

Glaciers melt faster than ever | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The World Glacier Monitoring Service, domiciled at the University of Zurich, has compiled worldwide data on glacier changes for more than 120 years. Together with its National Correspondents in more than 30 countries, the international service just published a new comprehensive analysis of global glacier changes in the Journal of Glaciology. In this study, observations of the first decade of the 21st century (2001-2010) were compared to all available earlier data from in-situ, air-borne, and satellite-borne observations as well as to reconstructions from pictorial and written sources.
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