Wednesday, August 16, 2017

What is the true cost of cars and sprawl

Energy is needed for life. But in our current system, energy is wasted by an inefficient auto-and-sprawl (autosprawl) system.

Waste generates profits. Each building is separately heated and cooled. Spread-out homes use many consumer products: cars, leaf-blowers, lawnmowers, home-entertainment centers, snow-blowers, ladders, hand tools, etc.

The world is divided between energy have/have-nots. But those who have are mainly wasting it driving around.

The war in Yemen is to protect shipping, especially oil, through the Bab al Mandab pinch point. The war is chaotic and complicated. Civilians are suffering.

All this so some people can drive an SUV to the cheeseburger window.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Methane release is faster than expected

EurekAlert! Science News: "The rate of vertical degradation of subsea permafrost in the East Siberian Arctic Shelf (ESAS) is 18 cm a year over the past 30 years, which is greater than previously thought. Scientists from Tomsk Polytechnic University received this data after the comprehensive study of subsea permafrost not only in the Russian Arctic but also in the Arctic as a whole."

World GDP in current US dollars peaked in 2014

Our Finite World : "What has been concerning for the last couple of years is that World GDP on this basis is no longer growing robustly. In fact, it may even have started shrinking, with 2014 being the peak year."

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Weather girl goes rogue

How, and how soon we will go extinct

Nature Bats Last : "The Great Dying wiped out at least 90% of the species on Earth due to an abrupt rise in global-average temperature about 252 million years ago. The vast majority of complex life became extinct. Based on information from the most conservative sources available, Earth is headed for a similar or higher global-average temperature in the very near future. The recent and near-future rises in temperature are occurring and will occur at least an order of magnitude faster than the worst of all prior Mass Extinctions. Habitat for human animals is disappearing throughout the world, and abrupt climate change has barely begun. In the near future, habitat for Homo sapiens will be gone. Shortly thereafter, all humans will die."

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Arctic sea ice may well be gone by September 2017

Arctic News: : "The low sea ice volume means that there is very little sea ice left to act as a buffer this year. Therefore, a huge amount of heat will not be able to be consumed this year in the process of melting ice and will instead speed up warming of water of the Arctic Ocean.

Less sea ice additionally means that less sunlight will be reflected back into space, and this heat will instead further speed up Arctic warming.
"

Thursday, August 3, 2017

The slow warming of the oceans guarantees our end

On Being: "The warming is not immediate. Delays are built into the system: there are different forms of inertia here. The air warms first, then the land, then surface winds mix the shallow surface layer of the sea and finally the abyssal reaches of the ocean. The heat slowly trickles down to the deep, churned by slow overturning ocean currents. The ocean is slow to warm, but it will receive the message in time."

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Stranded in our own communities: Transit deserts make it hard for people to find jobs and stay healthy

San Francisco Chronicle: "This is a large-scale problem. In San Antonio, the seventh-largest U.S. city by population, some 334,530 people – nearly one-fourth of the population – need access to public transportation in a city that doesn’t even have rail service. In Chicago, where there are high levels of transit dependency all across the city, just three of the transit desert neighborhoods that we identified house approximately 176,806 residents. Even in a city as progressive as Portland, Oregon, thousands live in transit desert neighborhoods."

Corporate US knew and lied about #climate. Big surprise.

eneryandpolicy : "Scientists had begun to warn electric utilities about climate change by 1968, and by 1988 the industry’s official research and development organization had acknowledged that, “There is growing consensus in the scientific community that the greenhouse effect is real.”

Despite this early knowledge about climate change, electric utilities have continued to invest heavily in fossil fuel power generation over the past half a century, and since 1988 some have engaged in ongoing efforts to sow doubt about climate science and block legal limits on carbon dioxide emissions from power plants."