Sustainability Science
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Mercury News editorial: California should embrace breakthrough on groundwater protection

Mercury News editorial: California should embrace breakthrough on groundwater protection | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Water agencies are proposing serious regulations to protect the state's groundwater from over pumping in drought years like this, and the Legislature needs to seize the moment.
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Sustainability Science
How might we keep the lights on, water flowing, and natural world vaguely intact? It starts with grabbing innovative ideas/examples to help kick down our limits and inspire a more sustainable world. We implement with rigorous science backed by hard data.
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Welcome to Sustainability Science

Welcome to Sustainability Science | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it

Welcome to my curation site for the emerging science of sustainability.

 

Here you will find an array of stories, examples, relevant cautionary tales, and data related to our hunt for a more sustainable economy with a reduced ecological footprint.  While my students, colleagues and I are interested in all aspects of sustainability, these pages have an historc emphasis on:

 

- human population growth rates/demography 

- product design/construction, especially:

    - triple bottomline

    - life cycle analyses (LCA)

    - sustainable supply chains

 - carbon footprints (especially carbon "finprints" of seafood)

 - food production/distribution systems

 - energy production/storage systems, especially:

    - dams and flow diversions

    - wind turbines

    - tidal power

    - solar panel efficiency/material advances

    - fuel cell design/material advances

 - general building design/construction, especially:

     - green roof/wall construction and plant palletes

     - lighting systems

     - elegant design

     - redevelopment/reuse

 - urban planning

 - role of mobile technology in fostering sustainability

 - elegant and effective communication

 

Thanks for visiting.  Please enjoy and let me know if I can answer any questions or be of any other help.

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Here’s why new EPA chief Pruitt is ‘absolutely wrong’ about CO2 and climate change

Here’s why new EPA chief Pruitt is ‘absolutely wrong’ about CO2 and climate change | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Scott Pruitt says there's no proof that carbon dioxide pollution is causing the Earth to heat up. Well-established science — and a scientist who's a fellow Republican — says that's flat-out wrong.
PIRatE Lab's insight:
This...is...simply...deranged.
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Oil Wells Are Bad Neighbors to These Kids in LA

Oil Wells Are Bad Neighbors to These Kids in LA | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Hear from the kids of Wilmington, California, who grow up in the shadow of oil wells. This video, second in the series of Stop Fooling California, tells the story of urban oil extraction in Los Angeles.

"Our goal in producing this series is to reveal to the public and the LA City Council the impacts of urban oil extraction on our most vulnerable communities," Sarah Goldman, campaign and digital director, said.

Help spread the word by sharing this Facebook video:

Via pdeppisch
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This Climate Change Measure Has Fossil Fuel Companies and Green Groups Working Together

This Climate Change Measure Has Fossil Fuel Companies and Green Groups Working Together | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
A rare coalition of energy companies, green groups and trade unions united this month to support a measure before Congress
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California's undocumented workers help grow the economy — but there's a cost

California's undocumented workers help grow the economy — but there's a cost | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
California has the largest economy in the US. It's also the state with the most immigrants. These two facts are not unrelated, but the way immigrants build that economy is complex.
PIRatE Lab's insight:
This story starts with an example from right here in Ventura County and the complex relationship between immigrants and our national economy.  This is an important part of the picture, but we should also note that there are other aspects to the story: justice, freedom, and the character of a nation welcoming to the rest of the world.
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This is what the storm damage in Yosemite looks like, and this is what it means

This is what the storm damage in Yosemite looks like, and this is what it means | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
It almost looks like a post-earthquake photo. The park, which logged more than 5 million visitors last year, continues to deal with fallout from the rain.
PIRatE Lab's insight:
The face of climate change...
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Scott Pruitt could end up being one of Trump’s most consequential Cabinet picks

Scott Pruitt could end up being one of Trump’s most consequential Cabinet picks | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Decades from now, we could look back on this as one of Donald Trump’s most consequential Cabinet picks.
PIRatE Lab's insight:
A great piece that jives with almost most of my colleague's (and my own) concerns with this anti-fact, anti-science, pro-pollution administrator just appointed to head the EPA last week.  The only key area left out is the impact on the culture of the agency: his appointment is likely to drive more effective, objective public servants from the system via frustration and inaction/inability to meet their public mandates.
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House Bill to Terminate the EPA

House Bill to Terminate the EPA | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Sponsored legislation by Matt Gaetz, the Representative from Florida - in Congress from 2017 through Present
PIRatE Lab's insight:
Terminating the EPA is neither reasonable nor sound policy and shows an utter lack of understanding for the benefits this agency has brought to our country since the Nixon Administration.

While token "impeach the president" and "terminate the Department of Education" (another bill freshman Congressman Gaetz also just introduced) bills such as this are not unheard of from the more fringe elements in elected office every so often, this has the feel of possibly something else. One would hope this is just politicking, but in this uncertain and massively divisive era all bets are off as to what "reasoned policy" represents these days.

Truly, deeply concerning.






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Cutting Helicopter Fuel Consumption With Hybrid Power

Cutting Helicopter Fuel Consumption With Hybrid Power | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Helicopter engine manufacturer Safran studies hybrid power systems as a way to reduce turbine engine size and fuel burn.
PIRatE Lab's insight:
Hybrid engine technology has been poorly adopted in the aviation industry.  This has numerous reasons from needed high thrust demands to focus on aerodynamics of the outer shell of the craft, etc.  But there are increasing signs that some of the design innovations for terrestrial motors are being incorporated into the power plants for aerial craft.  This is but one example.
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Free Virtual Conference on Green/Sustainable Business

Free Virtual Conference on Green/Sustainable Business | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Click here to edit the content
PIRatE Lab's insight:
Great line-up here for next week's conference.
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New documentary uncovers Singapore’s dirty little waste secrets

New documentary uncovers Singapore’s dirty little waste secrets | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Where do your coffee cups, clothes and household appliances go to die? New documentary Trash Trail traces the afterlife of consumer goods in Singapor
PIRatE Lab's insight:
I've not seen these videos in person yet, but the descriptions look great.  Another example of the "hidden" costs of our traditional economic/development pathways.
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Slideshows

Slideshows | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it

Gapminder modular slides to fit your presentation style

PIRatE Lab's insight:
Share your insight
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L’Oreal, Ben and Jerry’s, and more see benefit in “carbon insetting” | Ensia

L’Oreal, Ben and Jerry’s, and more see benefit in “carbon insetting” | Ensia | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Insetting does more than just offset carbon emissions—it helps companies boost resilience and care for the ecosystems that provide their raw materials.
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This 3D map lets you track global pollution in real time

This 3D map lets you track global pollution in real time | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
This 3D world map shows how weather patterns move air pollution across the globe.

Via David W. Deeds
PIRatE Lab's insight:
Interesting interactive.
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David W. Deeds's curator insight, March 14, 10:22 PM

Cool app but depressing context. ;)

Eric Larson's curator insight, March 16, 12:57 PM
3D pollution map?
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More Than Half of American Kids Say They Can't Spot Fake News

More Than Half of American Kids Say They Can't Spot Fake News | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
A new study of nearly 900 American children found that they struggle to identify what news is real and what is fake
PIRatE Lab's insight:
When basic facts are up for debate, there is no informed or reasoned decision-making nor a just society.
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ABB: Propelling the Polar Cruise Boom - maritime global news

ABB: Propelling the Polar Cruise Boom - maritime global news | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
ABB Azipods help to propel a new generation of Arctic capable cruise ships   Leveraging its experience in the distinct polar and cruise vessel segments
PIRatE Lab's insight:
Crazy to me that we can even do this...climate change is certainly changing the deck chairs....
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Yale Climate Opinion Maps - U.S. 2016 - Yale Program on Climate Change Communication

Yale Climate Opinion Maps - U.S. 2016 - Yale Program on Climate Change Communication | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
These global warming opinion maps show what people think about climate change in each US state, congressional district, metro area, and county.
PIRatE Lab's insight:
Wonderful interactive website with the most recent nation-wide data on climate opinions.
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Climate science denier Darrell Issa joins House climate change caucus

Climate science denier Darrell Issa joins House climate change caucus | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) announced this week he has joined a bipartisan House caucus on climate change. But the news, first reported by Reuters, glossed over one major point: Issa has been a long…

Via Monica S Mcfeeters
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Fire hits California refinery - maritime global news

An explosion and fire at an oil refinery in Torrance, California, on Saturday forced the partial shutdown of the plant, leading oil traders to expect a spike
PIRatE Lab's insight:
These complex chemical engineering plants are always a potential accident waiting to happen.  This same plant in Torrance Los Angeles had a huge problem about two years ago that drove a several month reduction in capacity and associated gasoline supply disruption for much of southern California.
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Do You Trust Big Data? Try Googling the Holocaust

Do You Trust Big Data? Try Googling the Holocaust | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
The advent of big data was supposed to usher in a more precise and rational world. Instead, it might be leading us into the swamp of "alternative facts."

Via pdeppisch
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pdeppisch's comment, February 17, 6:44 PM
I will check out "DuckDuckGo" - thanks for the tip.
malek's comment, February 19, 4:28 PM
Speaking of the devil "We Used Terrible Science to Justify Smoking Bans" http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/medical_examiner/2017/02/secondhand_smoke_isn_t_as_bad_as_we_thought.html
pdeppisch's comment, February 19, 7:10 PM
I used to smoke but "no inhaling". I had TB as a kid. And I did find that smoking did leave me short of breath. So -for me stopping smoking was a win. And I wonder how many stories out there are just that stories. Now I am bothered by smoking and I like that almost all areas are free of it. :)
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Environmental science in a post‐truth world

Environmental science in a post‐truth world | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it

A new year. A fresh start. Sound familiar? Yet this year seems anything but routine. Just when, thanks in part to US leadership, the world finally began to make tangible progress in addressing climate change, the US elected a President who labeled climate change a hoax and whose Cabinet nominees leave little doubt that climate denial will continue.

PIRatE Lab's insight:
Since when have we not engaged with our society?  While true, some of this reads as a bit pollyanna-ish and out of touch with how many of us try to engage with our society and consider our role to be engaged with our society.
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Eric Larson's curator insight, February 15, 8:50 AM
Climate change a hoax?
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Oroville Spillway Failure Flyover and Explanation 10 Feb 2017

Take a flight in the Luscombe over the Oroville Spillway just prior to overtopping.

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PIRatE Lab's curator insight, February 12, 1:10 PM
Climate change is giving us both increased droughts and increased rainfall events in climate crazy California.  Both of these situations have been long predicted, driven by the unprecedented anthropogenic greenhouse gas build-up in our atmosphere.  

Oroville is the tallest dam in the United States and (thanks to the intense precipitation this year) the focus of national attention and concern over infrastructure in the wake of a climate changed world.  The most recent estimate pegs the repair of the eroding concrete channel at perhaps $100-200 million (and we are only in early February).

See also these refs:

nice overview/explanation of the current conditions at the dam: https://youtu.be/jIzldNLv8ww
Construction of the Oroville Dam: https://youtu.be/p_5udzKfLQM
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Trusted soil data for solving global issues! | ISRIC World Soil Information

Trusted soil data for solving global issues! | ISRIC World Soil Information | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
ISRIC has released a large set of standardised soil profile data for the world. It contains 4 million records for some 94 thousand profiles. The data are freely available from our website. The data come from various sources. The provenance and licence strongly determined which data could be standardised and subsequently served to the international community.
PIRatE Lab's insight:
Great data set here for terrestrial productivity, etc. studies.
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World Ocean Council and Arctic Sustainable Development Goals hold summit

WOC CEO
Addresses Stakeholders at Arctic Frontiers Conference and Arctic Business Council Summit
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Seattle becomes the first city to sever ties with Wells Fargo in protest of Dakota Access pipeline

Seattle becomes the first city to sever ties with Wells Fargo in protest of Dakota Access pipeline | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
The Seattle City Council voted Tuesday to end its relationship with Wells Fargo in protest of the Dakota Access pipeline.
PIRatE Lab's insight:
Divestment is an interesting approach.  In the global marketplace of today, such efforts have much less impact than they did two decades ago.  But such efforts when clearly targeted and applied via many actors can still indeed produce change in the companies in question.  There is also the moral issue at the heart of such protests.  It is interesting to me how rarely this latter argument is proffered as a justification for folks contesting the existing status quo.
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Dakota Access Pipeline to win US Army permit for completion - BBC News

Dakota Access Pipeline to win US Army permit for completion - BBC News | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
But Standing Rock Sioux lawyers pledge to fight approval of the $3.8bn, four-state project.
PIRatE Lab's insight:
More oil, more pipelines.
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