Daily Archives: January 5, 2020

You and the Planet: Energy

The Royal Society

Published on Nov 7, 2019

Join BBC Wales’s Rachael Garside in Swansea to find out how the energy we use affects the natural world and discover promising pathways to a clean, safe and sustainable energy future.

This event is part of You and the Planet, a series exploring global environmental issues with world-renowned speakers from science, business, politics and more. Find out more: royalsociety.org/youandtheplanet

The Royal Society is a Fellowship of many of the world’s most eminent scientists and is the oldest scientific academy in continuous existence. Visit our website to learn more: https://royalsociety.org/

The Royal Society publishes leading science journals. Stay informed: https://royalsociety.org/journals/

People of Science with Brian Cox – Professor Martin Rees on Joseph Rotblat

The Royal Society

Published on Jan 5, 2020

Martin Rees talks to Brian Cox about one of his heroes, Joseph Rotblat, a physicist on the Manhattan Project, who later became a leading advocate of peace and disarmament.

Archive credits:

Portrait of Joseph Rotblat © Anne Purkiss

Hans Bethe portrait – Los Alamos National Laboratory, all rights reserved

2002 interview by Edward Goldwyn, used with permission of the University of Sheffield Faculty of Engineering.

Other images © British Pugwash

The Royal Society is a Fellowship of many of the world’s most eminent scientists and is the oldest scientific academy in continuous existence. Visit our website to learn more: https://royalsociety.org/

The Royal Society publishes leading science journals. Stay informed: https://royalsociety.org/journals/

Building Worker Power in The New Gilded Age: Jane McAlevey at The Harvard Law Forum

The Harvard Law Forum

Published on Apr 19, 2018

Jane McAlevey is a longtime organizer in the environmental and labor movements. She is a contributing writer at The Nation magazine and is the author of “Raising Expectations (and Raising Hell)” and “No Shortcuts: Organizing For Power in the New Gilded Age.” She was recently a Post Doctoral Fellow at the Labor and Worklife Program here at Harvard Law School.

On April 12, 2018, she returned to Harvard Law to to share her experience and insights into what it will take to organize deep worker power in our New Gilded Age

Jane McAlevey: The Only Way to Win Is to Strike

The Nation

Published on Jan 8, 2019

From West Virginia to Oklahoma, Arizona to Kentucky, 2018 was the year of the strike—and we need to keep that going in 2019. Jane McAlevey, organizer and author of No Shortcuts: Organizing for Power in the New Gilded Age, says that labor organizing is the only way we can win real change this year.

The Supreme Court has a new conservative majority. Gerrymandering has made it harder than ever to win progressive victories in elections. So that leaves the economic arena, the one area in which ordinary Americans can make a real impact. Watch this video to hear from McAlevey why labor strikes are the way we can take back power from the corporations that control way too much of our economy and our political system.

Jane McAlevey: Winning Conflicts


Published on Mar 20, 2019

Jane McAlevey at the 4th conference on union renewal «Learing from our Struggles» (Rest of the conference was held in German) Braunschweig, 16.2.2019

Further information: https://www.rosalux.de/dokumentation/…

Reflections On: Our Planet and Its Life, Origins, and Futures | Science

The theme of the 175th Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), “Our Planet and Its Life, Origins, and Futures,” celebrated an enormous breadth of scientific accomplishments that transcends many subdisciplines of the natural and social sciences. It was intended to be both a reflection on what has been learned and a look forward to what must yet be better known if we are to make wise choices as stewards of our planet. The program committee saw this as an opportunity to examine how we have come to know and understand the coevolution of life with its interacting biological, biogeochemical, and physical environments. Further advances in this area are essential to develop scenarios that can be useful in guiding decisions to address some of society’s most pressing problems. We must work toward a future that embraces the wise application of science to improve human health and well-being and to sustain the great diversity of life on our planet.

The occasion of this annual meeting, which opened on the very day of the 200th anniversary of the birth of both Charles Darwin and President Abraham Lincoln, prompted special reflection on the significance of Darwin’s contributions to our knowledge of the coevolution of organisms and their environment and the role that President Lincoln played in the advancement of science and, in particular, its application for the benefit of societal well-being. The meeting program was rich with papers and symposia that celebrated the 150th anniversary of Darwin’s publication On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. Darwin’s thesis was the product of decades of careful observations of the natural world, which he argued could be explained by natural selection. This year he is being properly heralded for his unequaled influence on our understanding of how life on Earth is sustained and how it changes to accommodate differing conditions over time. Today, even with our far more sophisticated understanding of the processes by which evolution occurs, Darwin’s thesis remains robust. We now also know much more about how physical and chemical aspects of the environment for life have changed, and how inextricably life and its environment continue to coevolve. Regulatory aspects of feedbacks in the collective Earth system, between life and the physics and chemistry of the atmosphere, soils, and oceans, have provided a persistent habitable condition for a vast diversity of life over the past three billion-plus years.

A profound lesson from the past few decades of scientific discovery across the Earth and life sciences is that the weight of the human footprint on essential life-supporting services of the Earth system has grown dramatically since the time of Darwin. Over the past 150 years, our population has grown fivefold. Our consumption of resources has grown even more. Some of this consumption has resulted in degraded conditions in terrestrial and coastal marine ecosystems that will, under the best of circumstances, persist for generations to come. Greenhouse gases released today by anthropogenic activities will affect the heat budget of Earth’s atmosphere for tens of human generations. Some depleted aquifers will take even longer to recharge. For all intents and purposes, resources such as fossil oil have no prospect for regeneration on meaningful societal time scales. Species extinctions are irreversible.

…(read more).

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Harvard Professor James McCarthy, environmentalist, dead at 75 – Harvard Gazette

James J. McCarthy, Alexander Agassiz Professor of Biological Oceanography and director emeritus of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, died on Dec. 11 after a long battle with pulmonary fibrosis. He was 75.

A champion of the environment, McCarthy, known as Jim, was committed to both education and advocacy about climate change.

“A profound lesson from the past few decades of scientific discovery across the Earth and life sciences is that the weight of the human footprint on essential life-supporting services of the Earth system has grown dramatically since the time of Darwin,” he wrote in 2009 in an article for the journal Science, “Reflections On: Our Planet and Its Life, Origins, and Futures.”

“Could Darwin have imagined that so soon in Earth history a single species would be altering the prospects for the survival of other species across all continents and to the greatest depths of the sea?” he wrote.

Committed to the application of science to public policy, McCarthy led numerous international scientific efforts to alert the world to the effects of climate change. The founding editor of the journal Global Biogeochemical Cycles, he also served as co-chair of the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, as a lead author of the 2005 Arctic Climate Impact Assessment, and as president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2008. In 2012, President Barack Obama appointed McCarthy to the U.S. Arctic Research Commission. In 2018, he received the prestigious Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement for his work on phytoplankton productivity amid climate change, and his outstanding leadership in the field of science policy. McCarthy shared the award with fellow biological oceanographer, Peter Falkowski, of Rutgers University.

A dedicated fly fisher who angled for trout in his spare time, McCarthy’s scholarship steered him toward the sea. His primary research focused on plankton, and his work on nutrient controls on ocean productivity resulted in many awards, including the New England Aquarium’s David B. Stone Award (2005) for distinguished service to the environment and the community, and the Museum of Science’s Walker Prize, which recognizes “meritorious published scientific investigation and discovery” (2008).

.. (read more).

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Is Trump taking US into a new Gulf War? | Inside Story

Al Jazeera English

Jan 4, 2020

The U.S. President has long said he’d pull American troops out of what he called the ‘endless wars’ in the Middle East. But there are fears Donald Trump may have just laid the groundwork for a new conflict. He ordered the assassination of Qassem Soleimani who led an elite force in Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps. A U.S. air strike near Baghdad airport on Friday killed Soleimani and also the deputy commander of an Iraqi paramilitary group, backed by Iran. Now there are vows from armed groups to avenge the deaths and all Americans are being urged to leave Iraq immediately. The Pentagon is sending an extra 3,000 troops to the Middle East in case of reprisal attacks. Presenter: Halla Mohieddeen. Guests: Hillary Mann Leverett, CEO of the political risk consultancy Stratega and a former U.S. diplomat. Andreas Krieg, Assistant Professor in Defence Studies at King’s College London and co-author of “Surrogate Warfare: The Transformation of War in the Twenty-First Century”. Adolfo Franco, Republican strategist and former Advisor to Senator John McCain.

The Fed Grants $7.77 Trillion in Secret Bank Loan – Now Do You Understand Occupy Wall Street?


Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), a longtime advocate for reform of the Federal Reserve, is sharply criticizing the Federal Reserve today after Bloomberg news reported that the Federal Reserve secretly committed nearly $8 trillion in support to American and international financial institutions during the 2008 bailout. Kucinich recorded a video for his website before going to the floor of the House of Representatives to call upon Congress to reclaim its Constitution primacy over monetary policy.

Funeral For Extinction

Transparent Film

Jan 4, 2020

A moving and beautiful short video of Extinction Rebellion Vancouver’s “Funeral for Extinction” featuring the Red Brigade. Created by award winning directors Nova Ami and Velcrow Ripper (Metamorphosis, Occupy Love). “Today we will mourn together, so we have the courage and love to do what is necessary.”