This is a joint event with the Oxford Martin School and the Oxford Climate Research Network (OCRN)
With unchecked emissions of climate pollutants, there is a 50% probability for the planetary warming to cross the so-called dangerous threshold of 20C by 2050; and there is at least a 5% probability the warming can exceed a catastrophic 60C in about 80+ years.
For the bottom three billion in rural areas, 20C would be enough to pose existential threats. With a 60C warming accompanied by 10 billion population, loss of bio diversity and species extinction, we should ask: whether civilisation as we know it can be extended beyond this century? Is there still time to avoid such catastrophes? The answer is Yes. But, we need to reinforce the technological and the market-based solutions with societal transformation. An alliance between scientists, policy makers, religious institutions and health care providers has a good chance to bring the needed transformation.
The Oxford Climate Research Network is a cross-divisional research community, harnessing Oxford’s diverse strengths to address the challenge of managing climate change in a complex and uncertain world. The network aims to develop a research agenda to address key challenges of a changing climate, deepen knowledge to inform policy and planning, and develop instruments to improve practice in partnership with government, research and business communities.
In climate news, the newly confirmed head of the Environmental Protection Agency, Scott Pruitt, said Thursday that carbon dioxide emissions are not a major contributor to global warming. Pruitt made the comment during an interview with CNBC host Joe Kernen.
Joe Kernen: “Do you believe that it’s been proven that CO2 is the primary control knob for climate? Do you believe that?”
Scott Pruitt: “No, I––No, I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do, and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact. So, no, I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see.”
Joe Kernen: “OK. All right––”
Scott Pruitt: “But we don’t know that yet, as far as—we need to continue debate and continue the review and the analysis.”
Scott Pruitt’s comment defies scientific consensus about the laws of physics and could put him at odds with U.S. law. Federal courts have ruled the EPA is obligated to regulate carbon dioxide under the Clean Air Act. The EPA’s own website even features a fact sheet declaring, “Greenhouse gases act like a blanket around the Earth, trapping energy in the atmosphere and causing it to warm.”
EPA Official Resigns Amid Push to Defund Environmental Justice Office
Headlines Mar 10, 2017
Meanwhile, a top official at the EPA has resigned in protest of a Trump administration proposal to entirely defund his office. Mustafa Ali helped found the EPA’s Office of Environmental Justice in 1992 and served under both Republican and Democratic administrations. Ali told InsideClimate News, “My values and priorities seem to be different than our current leadership and because of that I feel that it’s best if I take my talents elsewhere.”
Trump Administration Seeks End to Youth Climate Lawsuit
HeadlinesMar 10, 2017
In more climate news, the Trump administration asked a federal judge this week to halt a landmark trial brought by 21 young people who say the federal government is denying their constitutional rights by promoting fossil fuel extraction and greenhouse gas emissions.
Rachel Maddow looks at how the State Department under Donald Trump and Rex Tillerson is becoming weaker and and is losing it’s most experienced staff, to the point of being left out of a meeting with the visiting foreign minister of Mexico.
Rachel Maddow notes that while the dossier of intelligence about Donald Trump ties to Russia remains unconfirmed, pieces of it have checked out upon investigation by the press, though the primary government investigators are former Trump campaign officials.
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.
Calendar – Click on Date for links entered on that Day