Daily Archives: October 3, 2015

Israel building new fences along international borders


Al Jazeera English

Published on Oct 3, 2015

Israel is building new fences along its international borders. The government says it is a security measure, but others believe it will further isolate the nation from its neighbours. Al Jazeera’s Scott Heidler reports from West Jerusalem.Subscribe to our channel http://bit.ly/AJSubscribe Follow us on Twitter https://twitter.com/AJEnglish Find us on Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/aljazeera Check our website: http://www.aljazeera.com/

Global Climate Change
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Wildfires in Russia scorch world’s largest freshwater lake


PBS NewsHour

Published on Oct 3, 2015

Raging wildfires this season in Russia have turned the shores of the world’s largest and deepest freshwater lake in Siberia into an inferno. NewsHour’s Stephen Fee reports.

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Open Letter | Global Climate Change Week

http://globalclimatechangeweek.com/

Open Letter from Academics to World Leaders ahead of the Paris Climate Conference 2015

Some issues are of such ethical magnitude that being on the correct side of history becomes a signifier of moral character for generations to come. Global warming is such an issue. Indigenous peoples and the developing world are least responsible for climate change, least able to adapt to it, and most vulnerable to its impacts. As the United Nations Climate Conference in Paris approaches, the leaders of the industrialized world shoulder a grave responsibility for the consequences of our current and past carbon emissions.

Yet it looks unlikely that the international community will mandate even the greenhouse gas reductions necessary to give us a two thirds chance of limiting global warming to 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. At the moment, even if countries meet their current non-binding pledges to reduce carbon emissions, we will still be on course to reach 3 degrees Celsius by the end of this century. This is profoundly shocking, given that any sacrifice involved in making those reductions is far overshadowed by the catastrophes we are likely to face if we do not: more extinctions of species and loss of ecosystems; increasing vulnerability to storm surges; more heatwaves; more intense precipitation; more climate related deaths and disease; more climate refugees; slower poverty reduction; less food security; and more conflicts worsened by these factors. Given such high stakes, our leaders ought to be mustering planet-wide mobilization, at all societal levels, to limit global warming to no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius.

We undersigned concerned academics, researchers, and scientists from around the world recognize the seriousness of our environmental situation and the special responsibility we owe our communities, future generations, and our fellow species. We will strive to meet that responsibility in our educational and communicative endeavors. We call upon our leaders to do what is necessary to prevent catastrophic climate change. With just as much urgency, we call upon our fellow citizens to hold their leaders responsible for vigorously addressing global warming.

…(read more).

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Mary Robinson: Why climate change is a threat to human rights

Climate change is unfair. While rich countries can fight against rising oceans and dying farm fields, poor people around the world are already having their lives upended — and their human rights threatened — by killer storms, starvation and the loss of their own lands. Mary Robinson asks us to join the movement for worldwide climate justice.

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Resilient Food Systems, Resilient Cities | ICIC

http://www.icic.org/ee_uploads/pdf/ICIC_Food_Systems_final_revised_post.pdf

“In the fall of 2012, Hurricane Sandy struck New York and New Jersey, causing devastating damages to infrastructure and severely limiting both food availability and access. Boston was lucky to avoid the worst of Sandy, but with climate change we can expect a rise in sea levels and more extreme weather events in the future. We must better prepare our food system to be resilient after disruptions like hurricanes, floods, blizzards, and other natural disasters.” -Martin J. Walsh, Mayor of Boston
Read the City of Boston press release.

Recent severe storms have compelled Boston’s civic leaders to prioritize disaster recovery and resilience planning. A critical component of resilience planning is ensuring that the city’s food system is able to withstand and recover from disruption. As part of this effort, the City of Boston’s Office of Food Initiatives, Office of Emergency Management, Office of Environment, Energy and Open Space, and the Transportation Department commissioned research on the vulnerabilities of Boston’s food system. With this report, Boston becomes the first city of its size to study how a natural disaster could impact its food supply.

This study, conducted by the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City with support from Next Street, was funded by the Henry P. Kendall Foundation and the Local Sustainability Matching Fund, a project of the Funders’ Network for Smart Growth and Livable Cities and the Urban Sustainability Directors Network.

Download the report: Resilient Food Systems, Resilient Cities

Download the Executive Summary

Download the Implementation Roadmap

City Case Studies

New York
San Francisco
Toronto

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Harvard professor failed to disclose Monsanto connection in paper touting GMOs – The Boston Globe

Professor Calestous Juma of Harvard.

By Laura Krantz Globe Staff October 01, 2015

A Harvard Kennedy School professor wrote a widely disseminated policy paper last year in support of genetically modified organisms at the behest of seed giant Monsanto, without disclosing his connection, e-mails show.

Monsanto not only suggested the topic to professor Calestous Juma. It went so far as to provide a summary of what the paper could say and a suggested headline. The company then connected the professor with a marketing company to pump it out over the Internet as part of Monsanto’s strategy to win over the public and lawmakers, according to e-mails obtained through a public records request.

Juma, an international development specialist, said he was not paid by Monsanto. He used material from his previously published book on the topic, he said, and did not perform new research for the company nor change his views.

“It’s not that I was trying to hide anything,” Juma said Wednesday in an interview.

The episode offers a rare glimpse into efforts by both sides in the hotly debated issue to marshal support from academics, to whom the public looks for impartial analysis.

A spokesman for the Kennedy School declined to comment on Juma’s failure to disclose his ties to Monsanto. Harvard’s conflict of interest policy states “faculty members should not permit outside activities and financial interests to compromise their primary commitment to the mission of the university.”

Juma said he did not make a conscious effort not to disclose his connection to Monsanto.

“It may have been bad judgment on my part, but that’s how I was thinking at the time,’’ he said.

“The whole thing comes down to, in the end, a concern about whether there is inappropriate influence from the company,” said Josephine Johnston, a researcher at the Hastings Center, a nonprofit research organization in Garrison, N.Y.

Proponents of genetically modified organisms say they can help solve world hunger because crops produce higher yields and need less pesticide and fertilizer. Opponents say GMOs may be harmful to human health and are responsible for creating “super weeds” that adapt to withstand the powerful herbicides used on GMO crops.

The episode involving Juma began in August 2013, when he along with eight other professors received an e-mail from Eric Sachs, head of regulatory policy and scientific affairs for Monsanto.

“This will be an important project and is designed to lead to increased engagement on critical topics that are barriers to broader use and acceptance of [genetically modified] crops globally,” Sachs wrote.

He went on to describe a series of seven papers he asked the professors to author.

“I understand and appreciate that you need me to be completely transparent and I am keenly aware that your independence and reputations must be protected,” Sachs wrote.

His e-mail lays out the agribusiness giant’s strategy. A marketing company would “merchandize” the papers online, disseminate them to the media, and schedule op-eds, blog posts, speaking engagements, and webinars.

Monsanto suggested the research paper assigned to Juma be headlined “Consequences of Rejecting GM crops.” In December 2014, Juma published “Global Risks of Rejecting Agricultural Biotechnology,” on the website of the Genetic Literacy Project.

Juma said he viewed the invitation to write the paper as he would an invitation to speak at a conference. The Kenya native said he often speaks with industry officials on all sides of the GMO debate but has never been a paid consultant.

“I consider GMOs as actually a small part of what it takes an agricultural system to function,” he said.

Laura Krantz can be reached at laura.krantz. Follow her on Twitter @laurakrantz.

…(read more).

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COP 21 Paris France Sustainable Innovation Forum 2015 working with UNEP

Bolstering Success in Paris

The Sustainable Innovation Forum (SIF15) is the largest business focused event held during the annual Conference of Parties (COP), taking place this year on 7- 8 December at COP21 in Paris.

Building on year-round work from Climate Action and the UN Environment Programme, the 2 day Forum will convene cross-sector participants from business, Government, finance, UN, NGO and civil society to create an unparalleled opportunity to bolster business innovation and bring scale to the emerging green economy.

Global Climate Change
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Earthquake Watch, Hurricane Analysis | S0 News October 3, 2015

Suspicious0bservers

Published on Oct 3, 2015

Observing the Frontier Conference:
Pittsburgh: https://www.eventjoy.com/e/suspicious…
Phoenix: https://www.eventjoy.com/e/otf

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The Earthquake Frontier


Suspicious0bservers

Published on Oct 3, 2015

Observing the Frontier Conference:
Pittsburgh: https://www.eventjoy.com/e/suspicious…
Phoenix: https://www.eventjoy.com/e/otf

www.Suspicious0bservers.org
www.SpaceWeatherNews.com
www.MagneticReversal.org
www.ObservatoryProject.com
www.EarthChangesMedia.com

Solar Alerts on Twitter: https://twitter.com/TheRealS0s

Global Climate Change
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Supporting Decision-Making for a Sustainable Future – from Climate Knowledge to Climate Action


SEI — Stockholm Environment Institute

Streamed live on Sep 29, 2015

An opening key note presentation will set the scene regarding the problematic issues of knowledge fragmentation and information overload in the field of climate change research, policy and practice and will be followed by two engaging presentations from SEI staff and an interactive panel discussion.

Global Climate Change
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