By Courtney Pankrat, Shareable
The Appalachian region, home to 25 million people, comprises of West Virginia and parts of twelve of its surrounding states, reaching as far north as New York and south to Mississippi and Alabama. Certain areas of the region are known for high levels of poverty and infant mortality rates and low life expectancies. The region is also home to a number of sharing initiatives, from community gardens to coworking spaces, that aim to connect people to various resources and to each other.
By Zeke Hausfather, Carbon Brief
The year 2017 has seen some of the warmest temperatures ever recorded, only slightly below the record set in 2016. It has also seen unusually low Arctic and Antarctic sea ice for much of the year, though the summer Arctic minimum was only the eighth lowest on record. 2017 is also almost certain to be the warmest year without an El Niño event. When the effects of El Niño and La Niña are removed from the temperature record, the first nine months of 2017 are likely the warmest ever recorded.
By Bill Moyers, Bill McKibben, Common Dreams
I’ve spent my life living in rural America, some of it in blue state Vermont, some of it in red state upstate New York. They’re quite alike in many ways. And quite wonderful. It’s important that even in an urbanized and suburbanized country, we continue to take rural America seriously. And the thing that makes Vermont in particular so special, and I hope this book captures some of it, is the basic underlying civility of its political life. That’s rooted in the town meeting.
By Dougald Hine, Dark Mountain Project
If your copy of our twelfth book has already landed, then you’ll know that we’ve shaken up the form of Dark Mountain in a whole lot of ways. Not least, where a typical issue would contain forty or more pieces ranging from short poems to longer essays or stories, this time around we have built the book around twelve longer texts – and having introduced the other elements of this issue, it seems like time to tell you a little more about these.
By Doug Danoff, The Climate Mobilization blog
Last week was a turning point for our movement: the first big win for mobilization on the city level. After a year of work by members of the Climate Mobilization Hoboken, a resolution passed unanimously through the Hoboken City Council on November 1 calling for mobilization to city-wide carbon neutrality by 2027.
By Rob Hopkins, Rob Hopkins blog
My flying to Mallorca released 417 kg of CO2 which will now be in the atmosphere for many hundreds of years. The climate impacts of the decision will be very real. So, on balance, worth doing? It’s your call really. Hard to say. It was certainly a great way to communicate a Transition story of being aware about flying, of it being a big deal, of linking that to healthy, vibrant, resilient soils and to post fossil fuel farming, and its connection to vibrant, connected communities.
By Alex May, Open Democracy
Though human rights are not unproblematic, examining basic income through the lens of human rights moves us into discussions about the type of society and economy we want to have, instead of hiding these real questions behind broad economic approaches and traditional cultural values.
By Jody Tishmack, Anima/Soul
Healthy soil is so important for life on earth yet so poorly understood or appreciated. Science and technology brought us the “green revolution”; chemical fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, supersized tractors, genetically modified crops adapted to life drenched with agricultural chemicals. What is rarely apparent to most agricultural specialists is the damage this is causing the soil, basically turning it into ‘dirt’.
By Chuck Collins, Institute for Policy Studies
Just as Congress begins debate on the Republicans’ “Tax Cut and Jobs Act,” new revelations have emerged about how wealthy elites around the world hide their wealth. The “Paradise Papers” — the result of a leak from the Bermuda-based law firm Appleby — shines additional light onto the shadowy world of hidden wealth and tax dodging.
By Philip Ackerman-Leist, Resilience.org
As Günther and his cows wove their way through Laatsch, a beeping horn stopped him. He turned around, spreading his arms to slow the bovine promenade behind him, and let the car slip by before he and his cows stepped back into the main thoroughfare for their jaunt from the barn to pasture. The driver had Swiss plates and a business suit. Someone in a rush to make money, he surmised, while he headed out to his fields to seal his own financial fate in several plastic bags.
By Tegan Tallulah, The Climate Lemon
It’s safe to say that life would not be the same without trees. In fact, all human civilisation is dependent upon them. Not only as a source of valuable resources, but also for the ecological benefits they provide – called ecosystem services. We all know trees are awesome, but most people don’t quite understand all the important things they do.
By Elisabeth Winkler, STIR to Action
Welcome to community-owned Huxhams Cross Farm set on the rolling hills of south Devon on the edge of the Dartington Hall estate. Secured by the Biodynamic Land Trust (of which more later), its 34-acres exemplifies human-scale farming in a world increasingly dominated by industrial farming.
By Samir Dathi, Red Pepper
Despite my various friendly critiques here, it goes without saying that Naomi Klein is one of the most important figures on the radical left today. There are few other activists who are able to make radical arguments that are read by so many and taken seriously in the mainstream.
By Katharine Stavrinou, Medium
Major societal change in the coming decades necessitates new pedagogical design and sustainable instructional methodology. This proposal makes the case for using a permaculture design model as a resource to create an ecologically regenerative pedagogy for a sustainable future.
By Maria Gallucci, Grist
Clean shipping advocates plan to spotlight the sector’s emissions at the United Nations Climate Change Conference, which opens today in Bonn, Germany. Known as COP23, the gathering marks two years since the world agreed in Paris on a landmark climate accord — one that the Trump administration plans to abandon. The agreement, however, excluded pollution from international shipping and aviation in its targets to limit global warming. Officials had argued that those industries don’t easily fit into national or regional emissions schemes — and so they were left to regulate themselves.
By Chris Smaje, Small Farm Future
The 19th century ended as it began with many of the world’s people working primarily as small-scale, self-providing cultivators under the weaker or stronger suzerainty of large empires whose rise predated capitalism. But things weren’t the same at century’s end as at the beginning – a globalising capitalist economy had thoroughly penetrated the existing order and dominated it politically through direct or indirect colonial rule.
By Nathan Pickard, Strong Towns
What happens when you eat the wrong food over and over again? We call it “leakage.” Leakage is when capital exits the economy rather than remaining in it. Our current food system as designed (or left un-designed) is a constant source of leakage for our cities and a missed opportunity for urban planners.
By Dan Palmer, Making Permaculture Stronger
In this episode Dan Palmer from Making Permaculture Stronger enjoys a rich dialogue with Ben Falk from Whole Systems Design.
By DemandClimateJustice Staff, Medium
From November 6–17 countries will gather once again for the 23rd annual Conference of the Parties (COP 23). Several “roundtable” discussions will take place prior to the meeting proper, where the APA co-chairs hope Parties can get on the same page in terms of understanding each others’ views before the real negotiations begin.
By Mary Charlotte, Quivira Coalition
Sandra Postel‘s new book is Replenish: The Virtuous Cycle of Water and Prosperity. It’s about the world water cycle, and about real solutions to the problem of providing water for people and food, and at the same time for nature and wildlife.
By Amanda Tattersall, The Conversation
Almost every global city has a similar dynamic – a battle between the finance capital that seeks to make money from the city and the needs of the residents who seek to make the city their home. Rarely do we see residents successfully push back against the power of finance capital. But for those wanting to know how this can be done, look to Barcelona.
By Mark Hand, Climate Progress
The electric utility sector’s top lobbying group is teaming up with fossil fuel trade associations as part of an effort to intensify the industry’s campaign against citizen and environmental groups opposed to fracking and new natural gas pipelines.
By Ellen Brown, Web of Debt
Phil Murphy, a former banker with a double-digit lead in New Jersey’s race for governor, has made a state-owned bank a centerpiece of his platform. If he wins on November 7, the nation’s second state-owned bank in a century could follow.
By Jody Tishmack, Anima/Soul
Today it seems we have another Republican led effort to ignore the limits and pretend our actions won’t have consequences. “Climate change is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese.” “Coal jobs are coming back.” “There is plenty of oil for us to pump when the arctic ice melts!” The cognitive dissonance this requires is profound. If the arctic ice is melting how can we not be concerned about climate change?
By Guy Standing, Open Democracy
The Charter of the Forest was the first environmental charter forced on any government. It was the first to assert the rights of the property-less, of the commoners, and of the commons. It also made a modest advance for feminism, as it coincided with recognition of the rights of widows to have access to means of subsistence and to refuse to be remarried.
By Ugo Bardi, Cassandra's legacy
"Can the airlines be run on biofuels?" As it often happens, this simple question doesn't have a simple answer. First of all, it is a question that makes sense only in terms of a "sustainable" plane, that is one that doesn't run on fossil fuels. That's a major technological problem.
By Michelle Galimba, Anima/Soul
My daughter, being sixteen, just got her driver’s license. I asked her a question a few days ago: ” If you had to choose one and give up the other, which would you choose: a personal vehicle or the internet (including social media, wifi, smart phones, etc.)?” She thought for a bit and said: “It’s a hard question but I would choose the internet. Nobody actually likes driving, it’s just something we have to do, but I really like having access to movies at home and all that other stuff.” She is just one young person, but the choice and the distinction that she made surprised me.
By Tom Whipple, ASPO-USA
The price surge, which began in mid-September, continued last week with NY futures closing Friday at $55.64 and London at $62.07. The $6.50 spread is leading to ever higher US exports which are now above 2 million b/d. Crude prices are at their highest level in over two years.
By Ronnie Cummins, Common Dreams
At the recent regional Summit on Migrants and Returnees in Quetzaltenango (Xela), Guatemala, October 20-21, a new and promising solution to the global “immigration crisis” emerged: the creation of local, grassroots-powered economic development projects based on regenerative food, farming and land-use practices. Regenerative food and farming is the new gold standard for climate and environmentally friendly agriculture and land use across the world.
By Stan Cox, Resilience.org
The automakers and IT giants are predicting that autonomous vehicles (AVs or “driverless cars”) will play a big role in reducing America’s currently extravagant emissions of greenhouse gases. In this claim (as in the assertion that flying cars will be more energy efficient than helicopters), climate mitigation is serving not as a goal but as a selling point for a lucrative new technology that society doesn’t need.
By Kurt Cobb, Resource Insights
Our political, economic, and social culture encourages people to avoid the big picture, succumb to groupthink, and ignore history. It's much easier to maintain our peace of mind if we simply conform our opinions with those around us and avoid a tedious examination of the facts. However, the price we potentially pay is that we will get blindsided by what in retrospect seems an obvious problem. That's when most people finally adjust their worldview to new realities. But by then, any damage is generally already done.
By Julie Dermansky, DeSmog Blog
Last year LEAN filed a lawsuit against an Exxon chemical facility in Baton Rouge, next to the refinery that caught on fire Wednesday. That suit alleges the facility has been violating the Clean Air Act by failing to report pollution releases correctly. Lisa Jordan, director of Tulane University’s Environmental Legal Clinic and representing LEAN in this case, said it is too early to say how the recent agreement between the federal government and Exxon will impact their own case.
By Sandra Postel, Food Tank
Few animals get as bad a rap these days as cattle do. They are blamed for soil erosion, water depletion, overgrazed rangelands, greenhouse gas emissions, and, when eaten, human heart disease. Often missing from such indictments of the mooing, tail-wagging, and, yes, methane-emitting bovine, however, is our role. How we choose to manage cattle determines their environmental impact, not the animals themselves.
By Chris Nelder, William E. Rees, Energy Transition Show
How do we know at what level our consumption is sustainable, and when we’re in planetary overshoot? How do we quantify what the planet’s capacity is to meet human demands, and how much of that capacity is renewable, and how much of it is just being permanently depleted? And once we had a way to quantify that, what would we do with that information?
By Chris Winters, YES! magazine
Capitalism has been the world’s dominant economic system for more than 700 years. And as it brings the planet to new crises, author Raj Patel believes it’s important to imagine what might replace it. But reform won’t happen unless we understand capitalism’s appeal and historical rise, says Patel, a food justice activist and professor at the University of Texas at Austin. It’s remarkably resilient and can be traced to a process he calls “cheapness.”
By Boyd Cohen, P2P Foundation Blog
Post-capitalist entrepreneurship (PCE) instead is about changing the underlying logic of entrepreneurial organizing, governance models, legal structures, approach to intellectual property, perception of consumption and production and of course the ultimate objectives and metrics of success.
By Rob Hopkins, Rob Hopkins blog
How come we can still stick with a procedure from the late eighteenth century, elections, believing they are synonymous with democracy? It’s a very, very recent procedure and it was originally not even conceived as a tool for democracy. Elections were introduced to stop democracy, rather than to make democracy possible. If innovation is truly important, let us rethink the key procedure we use to let people speak. Ticking a box is no longer an option.
By Aaron Fernando, Shareable
Affordable housing-related CLTs are probably best-known, but this model can be applied for any community goal, including lowering costs for small businesses and ensuring local food production. Though the CLT model has been re-emerging since the late 1960s, it is actually somewhat of a return to indigenous practices around ownership of land and resources.
By Maddy Bartsch, Fibershed
BastCore is located in the greater-Omaha area and serves the fiber supply chain in an altogether unique way, through the processing of hemp. Outside, those were actually bales of hemp, harvested from across the country in states like Kentucky, Colorado, and Minnesota, which I was invited to see in person for BastCore’s open house at the end of September.
By Emmanuel Freudenthal, Mongabay
Deep in the heart of the forests of Myanmar, a massive trade in illicit charcoal to neighboring China is feeding a multi-million dollar industry that connects the forests and its people to industrial warehouses in China and the products they make for the world.
By Kate McFarland, Basic Income News
It seems that 2017 has been a watershed year for the global basic income movement, as multiple governments and private research groups have independently conceived and launched experimental trials of basic income (and closely related policies). Several new experiments in North America and Europe represent the first such experiments in the developed world since the 1970s (when a negative income tax was tested in several cities in the United States and Canada), and the largest basic income trial ever designed is about to take place in Kenya.
By Dianne Monroe, Resilience.org
These firemen drove straight into a firestorm that was much larger than they expected. Once there, they looked around for something they could save – and set to work saving it. We live in the age of the Anthropocene, a firestorm that is likely to be so much larger than we expected. How can we, in an analogous way, find our own “Line of Sorrow” and work to save what can be saved?