SpaceX founder Elon Musk is issuing a retreat from the company’s plans to to break NASA’s stranglehold of the US space market. Musk announced that SpaceX is grounded indefinitely, following the spectacular crash of its Falcon 9 rocket after it launched to restock the International Space Station. RT’s Manila Chan asks Dr. John Logsdon, author of ‘John F. Kennedy and the Race to the Moon’, what this latest explosion means for SpaceX and the future of space exploration.
It’s not every day that the world’s official atomic clock reads 23:59:60. But that’s exactly what will happen Tuesday night at 11:59 GMT, as we gain a “leap second” to make the most accurate clock, well, more accurate. RT’s Manuel Rapalo looks into what it takes to keep the hands of time aligned with the world spinning on its axis.
We are European Foundations, Family Offices and Individuals who have pledged to divest from fossil fuels and invest in climate solutions such as renewable energy, clean tech and energy efficiency. We do this for three reasons.
We do not want our investments to undermine the work of our philanthropy and grant making. Continued investment in fossil fuels will lead to runaway climate change, the consequences of which will disproportionately affect the poor and vulnerable. We are gravely concerned about the risks posed to fossil fuel investments by likely changes to policy and by the increasing competitiveness of the alternative energy market. We believe we will be in breach of our fiduciary duty if we do not manage this risk. We want to send a loud, public signal to governments, policy makers and business leaders about the future we want them to enable for us and for our beneficiaries.
We live in a world where biophysical and social processes are tightly coupled. Hydrologic systems change in response to a variety of natural and human forces such as climate variability and change, water use and water infrastructure, and land cover change. In turn, changes in hydrologic systems impact socioeconomic, ecological, and climate systems at a number of scales, leading to a coevolution of these interlinked systems. The Harvard Water Program, Hydrosociology, Integrated Water Resources Management, Ecohydrology, Hydromorphology, and Sociohydrology were all introduced to provide distinct, interdisciplinary perspectives on water problems to address the contemporary dynamics of human interaction with the hydrosphere and the evolution of the Earth’s hydrologic systems. Each of them addresses scientific, social, and engineering challenges related to how humans influence water systems and vice versa. There are now numerous examples in the literature of how holistic approaches can provide a structure and vision of the future of hydrology. We review selected examples, which taken together, describe the type of theoretical and applied integrated hydrologic analyses and associated curricular content required to address the societal issue of water resources sustainability. We describe a modern interdisciplinary science of hydrology needed to develop an in-depth understanding of the dynamics of the connectedness between human and natural systems and to determine effective solutions to resolve the complex water problems that the world faces today. Nearly, every theoretical hydrologic model introduced previously is in need of revision to accommodate how climate, land, vegetation, and socioeconomic factors interact, change, and evolve over time.
Astrobiologists like Jason Dworkin are keenly interested in the origins of life on Earth, but the evidence that they seek was erased long ago by Earth’s geology and chemistry. Fortunately, asteroids like Bennu preserve the solar system’s earliest ingredients, including the carbon-based building blocks of life. That’s why NASA is sending a spacecraft called OSIRIS-REx to explore asteroid Bennu and bring a sample back to Earth. The material collected by OSIRIS-REx will provide a wealth of data for future generations of astrobiologists, shedding light on one of Earth’s biggest mysteries.
Now in his 95th year, James Lovelock has been hailed as “the man who conceived the first wholly new way of looking at life on earth since Charles Darwin” (Independent) and “the most profound scientific thinker of our time” (Literary Review).
A Rough Ride to the Future introduces two new Lovelockian ideas. The first is that three hundred years ago, when Thomas Newcomen invented the steam engine, he was unknowingly beginning what Lovelock calls “accelerated evolution,” a process that is bringing about change on our planet roughly a million times faster than Darwinian evolution. The second is that as part of this process, humanity has the capacity to become the intelligent part of Gaia, the self-regulating earth system whose discovery Lovelock first announced nearly fifty years ago.
A Rough Ride to the Future is also an intellectual autobiography, in which Lovelock reflects on his life as a lone scientist, and asks―eloquently―whether his career trajectory is possible in an age of increased bureaucratization.
We are now changing the atmosphere again, and Lovelock argues that there is little that can be done about this. But instead of feeling guilty, we should recognize what is happening, prepare for change, and ensure that we survive as a species so we can contribute to―perhaps even guide―the next evolution of Gaia. The road will be rough, but if we are smart enough, life will continue on earth in some form far into the future.
The acclaimed Ha-Joon Chang is a voice of sanity-and wit-in this lighthearted book with a serious purpose: to question the assumptions behind the dogma and sheer hype that the dominant school of neoliberal economists have spun since the Age of Reagan. 23 Things They Don’t Tell You about Capitalism uses twenty-three short essays (a few great examples: “There Is No Such Thing as a Free Market,”“The Washing Machine Has Changed the World More than the Internet Has”) to equip readers with an understanding of how global capitalism works, and doesn’t, while offering a vision of how we can shape capitalism to humane ends, instead of becoming slaves of the market.
Welcome to Transition Studies. To prosper for very much longer on the changing Earth humankind will need to move beyond its current fossil-fueled civilization toward one that is sustained on recycled materials and renewable energy. This is not a trivial shift. It will require a major transition in all aspects of our lives.
This weblog explores the transition to a sustainable future on our finite planet. It provides links to current news, key documents from government sources and non-governmental organizations, as well as video documentaries about climate change, environmental ethics and environmental justice concerns.
The links are listed here to be used in whatever manner they may be helpful in public information campaigns, course preparation, teaching, letter-writing, lectures, class presentations, policy discussions, article writing, civic or Congressional hearings and citizen action campaigns, etc. For further information on this blog see: About this weblog. and How to use this weblog.
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