By Nathan Thanki, University of California, Santa Barbara
In this talk Nathan points out some flaws in the organising culture of the climate movement and suggests that the way to build better movements (because the idea of “winning” in the climate crisis is laughable) is to embrace contradictions and engage in a battle of the imagination.
By Raj Mankad, Grist
Juan Parras gives one hell of a tour of Houston’s east side. He’s charming and funny. Wearing a beret, he strikes an old-world look, like he might lead you to a cafe on a plaza. He doesn’t charge a fee for his services. After all, you’re on a “toxic tour,” and Parras is on a mission.
By Richard Heinberg, Post Carbon Institute
Our core ecological problem is not climate change. It is overshoot, of which global warming is a symptom. Overshoot is a systemic issue. Until we understand and address this systemic imbalance, symptomatic treatment will constitute an endlessly frustrating round of stopgap measures that are ultimately destined to fail.
By Richard Bartlett, Open Democracy
What strikes me now in writing this, is just how extraordinarily privileged I am to have the peace and space for contemplation and dialogue. My clarity is the product of thousands of miles of travel, hundreds of conversations, days of writing. The major question I’m left with is how on earth can folks in the US find the peace to make sense of the present and dream of a future worth fighting for?
By Jeremy Leon Hance, Ensia
Peatlands are the superheroes of ecosystems: purifying water, sometimes mitigating flooding and providing a home for rare species. And they beat nearly every system when it comes to carbon storage. Known peatlands only cover about 3 percent of the world’s land surface, but store at least twice as much carbon as all of Earth’s standing forests. And at least one-third of the world’s organic soil carbon, which plays a vital role in mitigating climate change and stabilizing the carbon cycle, is in peatlands.
By Gunnar Rundgren, Garden Earth
The dream of food without dirt. That is the best description of how we will get food in the future if we would believe the impressive number of food tech start-ups which will produce food without soil or animals. But few of them deliver on their exaggerated promises.
By Chris Nelder, Energy Transition Show
When we hear about the emissions scenarios used in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports, do we really understand what they’re assuming about future fossil fuel combustion? And what do these emissions scenarios imply about the steps needed to achieve climate policy goals and decarbonize our energy system?
By Andrew Simms, Sarah Woods, Red Pepper
In April 1947, Mont-Pèlerin was home to an ideological resurrection and, as with The Returned, what came back was critically different to the previous incarnation. The architects of neoliberalism favoured a faith in free markets to best meet peoples’ needs, drawing on the tradition of Adam Smith, but taken to a new, extreme level. They coupled this to an equally extreme libertarian individualism.
By Julie Deconchat, Permaculture Association
Spaces like the Concrete Garden or Les Grands Voisins are amazing in that they enable us to see that another society based on social harmony and a different understanding of work is possible. But let’s make these spaces permanent, let’s not confine them to small bubbles that can burst. We should demand that any piece of land unused for long period be permanently given to the community.
By Riva Kapoor, Project for Public Spaces
At a time when a primary mode of interaction between young people is through social media, this group may be especially vulnerable to the possibility of forgetting the value of public space around them. Why play chess in the park when you can play it on Facebook? Why walk along the riverside when you can send Tweets instead? Why have lunch from a kiosk in a public plaza when it’s easier to post Snapchats of your food from home?
By Brett Walton, Circle of Blue
An annual analysis of the planet’s climate reaffirms what researchers knew was the case: that 2016 was the hottest year since at least 1880, when reliable global measurements were first kept. Record concentrations of heat-trapping gases and a strong El Nino raised the global average temperature to a new high, breaking a mark set just a year earlier.
By Brandon King, Rukiah Lumumba, Grassroots Economic Organising
Cooperation Jackson has been working with the Coalition for Economic Justice which is specifically focused on combating the aspects of the Confederate Spring that are seeking to seize Jackson’s strategic assets and destroy Black political power in the city. This panel/workshop session will also give some context to the struggle for economic democracy in Jackson Mississippi and Cooperation Jackson's role as a vehicle designed to actualize economic democracy in Jackson, Mississippi.
By Sarah van Gelder, YES! magazine
So I began wondering: What if the people I met in one city—say, Detroit—could share what they know with people in other communities around the country? What if people had access to the skills that would allow them to step up with confidence together with others where they live? We have a lot of work ahead of us—especially with the retrograde politics in Washington, D.C. Could work in our communities deepen relationships while building our power and nourishing our spirits?
By Rachel Quednau, Strong Towns
The persistent question for me as we explore local food issues here at Strong Towns is: Could any of our communities actually survive on local food alone? Could we ever get to a point where local food makes up most of our diets and where local farmers are successfully supplying that? These questions (inspired by the Strong Towns Strength Test) have been buzzing in the back of my mind and, while I want to believe it’s feasible to live off of local food, the more I study this, the more I realize it would be pretty darn tough, if not impossible.
By Amelia Urry, Grist
How to collect that solar energy, predict it, get it to the right places at the right time, save it up for a rainy day — those are the kind of challenges our massive, spread-out, and unevenly populated country faces as we make the switch to clean energy. And it all comes down to a lesson that the Evslins learned the hard way: It’s not about getting off the grid. It’s about building a better one.
By Joe Brewer, Medium.com
What does the ecological crisis have in common with global poverty? How does politics relate to economics? The study of history? The changing landscape of technology, arts, and culture? Why is there not a coherent School of Social Sciences that brings themes like these together in one place?
By Jill Buck, Richard Heinberg, Go Green Radio
Sometimes the most heated debates are among people who almost agree. That seems to be the case with the recent Jacobson-Clack controversy, in which two groups of well-intentioned, renewable energy advocates bitterly spar over differing paths to a 100% renewable energy future. But as PCI Senior Fellow Richard Heinberg points out in his latest essay, neither side is considering one of the most crucial aspects to successfully reaching that future.
By Tom Whipple, ASPO - USA
It has been two weeks of mixed signals as to the course of oil prices. Last week prices fell around 1.5 percent, closing at $48.82 in New York on concerns that the OPEC/NOPEC collation was not following through on its pledge to cap production.
By Adam Grubb, Tim Flannery, Greening the Apocalypse
Tim Flannery drops into the studio and we discuss why, and talk about his new book (his second follow up to the highly influential The Weather Makers): Sunlight and Seaweed: An Argument For How To Feed, Power, and Clean Up The World.
By Eva Perroni, Food Tank
Over the centuries, indigenous peoples have provided a series of ecological and cultural services to humankind. The preservation of traditional forms of farming knowledge and practices help maintain biodiversity, enhance food security, and protect the world’s natural resources.
By David Bollier, David Bollier blog
There is a need for the deeper conversation that the 2016 election should have provoked us to have: How can we overcome the structural pathologies of our rigged economy and toxic political culture, and galvanize new movements capable of building functional alternatives?
By Brian Miller, South Roane Agrarian
The smallest livestock on our farm are also the most fascinating to observe, from their daily diligence and complexity of social organization to the extraordinary “waggle dance” they use to communicate the location of nectar and new homes. Today, as we prepare to harvest the last of this year’s honey, I’m reminded that the bees have a lot to teach us. We only have to listen.
By Kate Duva, Transition Network
Let’s talk about GRIEF. More specifically, collective grief. What makes you sad about this world? What community have you loved and lost? What kind of community have you never had, but wish you did? What was taken from your ancestors that you want back?
By Estefanía Avella Bermúdez, Future Perfect
The 54 kilometres of the eastern mountains surrounding Bogotá represent practically the last drop of water that many people are struggling to preserve in the middle of a desert. Organisations and public and private foundations alike have come up with projects that are not only designed to reforest the mountains with native plants, but also to encourage citizens to get to know these lands and take responsible possession of them.
By Joel Stronberg, Civil Notion
Deregulating the nation’s environment is proving more problematic for Trump and company than they anticipated. There is, I suppose, some consolation in that. Although at the same time, federal collaboration with states and the private sector to protect the environment and to move the nation toward a low-carbon future is pretty much at a standstill. Defense has become the new offense, since The Donald’s settling into the Oval Office.
By Alexandre Bigot-Verdier, Lieza Dessein, Thomas Doennebrink, P2P Foundation
The platform co-op movement is only two years old. Slowly but surely the movement has grown and it is now looking into ways to get organized. Trebor Scholz and Nathan Schneider did a tremendous job inventorying existing coops and advocating their actions throughout the world. They are connecting people with one another in an effort to ease knowledge exchange.
By Margaret Klein Salamon, Ezra Silk, Anya Grenier, University of California, Santa Barbara
Three leaders of The Climate Mobilization discuss the recent controversy around the New York Magazine piece, “The Uninhabitable Earth” and the role of fear and other emotions in the climate movement. Should we tell the whole, frightening truth? Can they handle it? We argue that, when combined with a potential solution—WWII scale climate mobilization—the truth can be intensely motivating.
By Maira Sutton, Shareable
A renewable energy cooperative, a community land trust, and a former church building publicly-controlled and used by nearby residents — these are just a few examples of about 500 urban commons projects that are thriving in the Flemish city of Ghent in Belgium.
By Ian Angus, Climate and Capitalism
The new State of the Climate report confirms that 2016 was as the warmest year in 137 years of record-keeping. Other climate indicators that set new records include greenhouse gas concentrations, sea level, and sea surface temperature.
By Gunnar Rundgren, Garden Earth
There is a vibrant food movement in the UK and Brexit means that there will be a national food and agriculture policy in the future. Will the UK stick to its neoliberal free trade politics or will it take the opportunity to re-shape its food system? A People’s Food Policy want it to be fundamentally transformed.
By Josh Floyd, Medium.com
Our present situation warrants a significant level of knowledge humility. We can’t know for sure how future energy systems will function, what they will cost, and the types of societies they will allow, but modelling efforts can provide indications of what is and isn’t possible if given sets of conditions prevail. There are important benefits that come with greater knowledge humility.
By Emma Bryce, Ensia
But what does the transition mean for residents of Essen and the rest of the Ruhr region — the former industrial coal belt — whose lives and livelihoods have been dramatically altered by the reduced demand for coal? The answer to that could hold some useful lessons for those undergoing similar transitions elsewhere.
By Debbie Bookchin, ROAR Magazine
For many years the left has struggled with the question of how to bring our ideas, of equality, economic justice and human rights, to fruition. And my father’s political trajectory is instructive for the argument that I want to make: that municipalism isn’t just one of many ways to bring about social change — it is really the only way that we will successfully transform society.
By Anna Laycock, STIR to Action
Using a mixture of theory, practice, storytelling and visuals, Raworth offers a picture of an economy which could genuinely sustain people and planet. For those of us working on details of the picture, Doughnut Economics offers a sense of coherence and a sense of hope.
By Alex Jensen, Local Futures
Now, in addition to the products that magically appear on Western store shelves absolutely shorn of history and provenance, much of the hitherto distant pollution emitted in their production has also arrived. It has come home to roost. Globalization’s blowback.
By Chris Nelder, Energy Transition Show
In this fourth episode of our climate science mini-series, we dive into the carbon cycle to understand how the greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels accumulate in the atmosphere. We also discuss how climate science is taught, the concepts that students struggle to understand, and what the science of human reasoning and teaching can tell us about how best to communicate this enormously complex subject to a lay audience.
By Kea Wilson, Strong Towns
When we talk about the economic benefits of gardening, farming, and otherwise fostering a comprehensive local food system, we usually bring up reduced grocery bills, import replacement, and even preparation for national supply chain disruption if our big agriculture model ever proves unsustainable. But we less often talk about the ways that plants—including edible plants—can double as green infrastructure that can take the pressure off the man-made systems we rely on to make our cities function.
By DemandClimateJustice Staff, Medium.com
Midsummer in the Northern Hemisphere has been and gone but the mercury just keeps rising. With the June data logged, 2017 goes down as having had the second hottest January — June period ever — putting it on track to be one of the second hottest year on record.
By Joe Romm, Climate Progress
The United States faces a choice between manageable warming and unmanageable catastrophe, according to a leaked draft report by scientists from 13 federal agencies. The report’s “higher emissions” scenario projects a devastating 8°F to 10°F warming over the interior of this country–and, unimaginably, upwards of 18°F over in the Arctic!–by 2071 to 2100. In that case, global sea levels could rise as much as 8 feet, inundating every major coastal city in this country and around the world.
By Steve Horn, DeSmog Blog
Hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) and offshore drilling garner a lot of news headlines when it comes to oil and gas issues in America, but they're far from the only game in town, with those two drilling techniques not even constituting the majority of U.S. oil and gas production. For that, look to enhanced oil recovery (EOR), an under-regulated drilling method that has been around for over a century and could be threatening drinking water sources
By Maro, Grassroots Economic Organizing
It’s time to take control of our lives. Now is the time. We are building a socioeconomic system by the people and for the people, totally decentralized, open, cooperative and managed horizontally by all of its participants and taking all the decisions in assembly form. Meet and participate.
By Heather Kennedy, Red Pepper
Our national obsession with home ownership is absolute. It’s so entrenched that we accept, without question, that those who own their home should enjoy a greater access to democracy. But in a property-owning democracy, what happens to the rest of us not lucky enough to own our home? In the wake of the entirely preventable fire at Grenfell Tower, this question demands an answer.