Virgin boss Sir Richard Branson readies himself for space – BBC News

Sir Richard Branson says he’s training to be an astronaut and will take his first trip into space soon.

He told BBC Radio 4’s You and Yours programme: “We’re talking about months away, not years away – so it’s close. There are exciting times ahead.

“I’m going for astronaut training; I’m going for fitness training, centrifuge and other training, so that my body will hopefully cope well when I go to space.”

The 67-year-old multi-millionaire has been investing in commercial space travel since 2004, when he founded space tourism company Virgin Galactic.

…(read more).

Advertisements

Activists Say Zero Waste is Not a Pipe Dream (2/2)

Experts: How to avoid too much Climate Emissions?

Environmental Lawyers Resist | Update

World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity: A Second Notice | BioScience | Oxford Academic

Twenty-five years ago, the Union of Concerned Scientists and more than 1700 independent scientists, including the majority of living Nobel laureates in the sciences, penned the 1992 “World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity” (see supplemental file S1). These concerned professionals called on humankind to curtail environmental destruction and cautioned that “a great change in our stewardship of the Earth and the life on it is required, if vast human misery is to be avoided.” In their manifesto, they showed that humans were on a collision course with the natural world. They expressed concern about current, impending, or potential damage on planet Earth involving ozone depletion, freshwater availability, marine life depletion, ocean dead zones, forest loss, biodiversity destruction, climate change, and continued human population growth. They proclaimed that fundamental changes were urgently needed to avoid the consequences our present course would bring.

The authors of the 1992 declaration feared that humanity was pushing Earth’s ecosystems beyond their capacities to support the web of life. They described how we are fast approaching many of the limits of what the ­biosphere can tolerate ­without ­substantial and irreversible harm. The scientists pleaded that we stabilize the human population, describing how our large numbers—swelled by another 2 billion people since 1992, a 35 percent increase—exert stresses on Earth that can overwhelm other efforts to realize a sustainable future (Crist et al. 2017). They implored that we cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and phase out fossil fuels, reduce deforestation, and reverse the trend of collapsing biodiversity.

On the twenty-fifth anniversary of their call, we look back at their warning and evaluate the human response by exploring available time-series data. Since 1992, with the exception of stabilizing the stratospheric ozone layer, humanity has failed to make sufficient progress in generally solving these foreseen environmental challenges, and alarmingly, most of them are getting far worse (figure 1, file S1). Especially troubling is the current trajectory of potentially catastrophic climate change due to rising GHGs from burning fossil fuels (Hansen et al. 2013), deforestation (Keenan et al. 2015), and agricultural production—particularly from farming ruminants for meat consumption (Ripple et al. 2014). Moreover, we have unleashed a mass extinction event, the sixth in roughly 540 million years, wherein many current life forms could be annihilated or at least committed to extinction by the end of this century.

…(read more).

World-sci-pdf

PDF Version

See related report on paper:

End of the world: Is the world about to end? 20000 scientists say it’s TOO LATE

Climate Change News
Published on Apr 22, 2018

End of the world: Is the world about to end? 20,000 scientists say it’s TOO LATE
TENS of thousands of concerned scientists across the globe have signed an open warning letter to the public, cautioning humanity faces certain doom at its own hands. Is the world about to end?
Around 20,000 scientists from all walks of life believe that humans are not doing enough to avert cataclysmic disaster – warning it could now be “too late”.

In a paper titled “World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity: A Second Notice”, the scientists spurned humanity to save the planet.

The dire letter outlines the grave threats faced by overpopulation, rapid industrialisation and climate change.

It says: “Humanity is now being given a second notice, as illustrated by these alarming trends
“We are jeopardising our future by not reining in our intense but geographically and demographically uneven material consumption and by not perceiving continued rapid population growth as a primary driver behind many ecological and even societal threats.

“Soon it will be too late to shift course away from our failing trajectory, and time is running out.

“We must recognise, in our day-to-day lives and in our governing institutions, that Earth with all its life is our only home.”

The letter follows a similar declaration penned by the Union of Concerned Scientists 25 years ago in 1992.
The 1992 World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity note called on humankind to “curtail environmental destruction” which was pushing Earth to the brink of collapse.

But it appears as though the warning has fallen on deaf ears and we have now unleashed a “mass extinction event” on the planet – the sixth in just 540 million years.

According to the paper, many life forms will forever perish off the face of the planet by the end of the current century.

The study’s authors underlined humanity’s rate of expansion was lethal challenge to the planet’s delicate ecosystems.
They said: “There are critical environmental limits to resource-dependent economic growth.”
At the time of release the “Warning” quickly rose in the ranks as one of the most widely read academic papers in the world.

In fact at one point it was the sixth most read paper among nine million other papers on the Altmetric scale, which tracks research paper circulation.

The paper was also brought before world leaders from Israel to Canada.
Soon it will be too late to shift course away from our failing trajectory, and time is running out

World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity
Dr Andrew Weaver, leader of the Canadian Third Party addressed the Canadian Parliament, reading from the warning.
He said: “Let us collectively reflect upon the warnings fi the world scientists as well as the words of Governor Jay Inslee who addressed the legislators yesterday in reference to tackling climate change as he noted.

“This is one of the greatest challenges of our time if we are remembered for anything a hundred years from now, this is what we will be judged on. It is time for us to rise to that challenge.”

Professor William Ripple from Oregon State University, who led the letter, noted: “Our scientists’ warning to humanity has clearly struck a chord with both the global scientific community and the public.”

See:

 

Economic Update: Struggling Against the System – The “Selective Schools” – A “New Aristocracy?” or a Replication of the Old One?

Wolff-Yale

Democracy At Work
Published on Apr 22, 2018

See related:

new-arist-yale

Can Earth support this trajectory?

If not,
can we change direction in time
to avoid certain and sudden
system-wide collapse?