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Scientists Have Been Talking About Climate Change for More Than a Century. Here’s Why It Took So Long for the World to Listen

  • Reading recent media reports, you could be forgiven for thinking that climate change is a sudden crisis.
  • From the New York Times: “Climate Change Is Accelerating, Bringing World ‘Dangerously Close’ to Irreversible Change.” From the Financial Times: “Climate Change is Reaching a Tipping Point.” If the contents of these articles have surprised Americans, it reveals far more about the national discourse than then any new climate science.
  • Building on Tyndall’s work, Sweden’s Svante Arrhenius investigated the connection between atmospheric CO2 and the Earth’s climate.

When the Green New Deal Goes Global

  • Three months later, she followed up by proposing her first piece of legislation with veteran Massachusetts Sen. Ed Markey: the Green New Deal, a multitrillion-dollar plan to decarbonize the U.S. economy on the path to global net-zero emissions by 2050.
  • First, there is the centrality of climate change, which keeps this variety of socialism blissfully distant from that of the Cold War.
  • No more crises wasted.” Whether planning for climate disaster, Brexit, or an even deeper political fracture, some leftists have proposed “disaster communism” in place of Klein’s “disaster capitalism.” So can an open catastrophe be used to roll out large-scale transformations of property and collective life?

World’s largest asset manager BlackRock joins $41 trillion climate-change investing pact

  • ‘We believe evidence of the impact of climate risk on investment portfolios is building rapidly’ BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager with more than $6.8 trillion under its control, becomes the latest signatory to Climate Action 100+, an influential big-money pact that’s pushing — although with spotty results so far — many of the world’s largest greenhouse-gas emitters to take action on man-made climate change.
  • BlackRock joins more than 370 global investors, including pension giant CalPERS and HSBC Global Asset Management, already participating in the initiative, which aims to sway companies ranging from fossil-fuel producers to consumer-product conglomerates to be carbon neutral by 2050.
  • With BlackRock on board, total assets under management represented by Climate Action 100+ now top $41 trillion.

Bushfire crisis forces a reckoning on Australia’s ‘regressive’ climate politics

  • Australia’s government, long allied with the coal industry, has been labelled “an increasingly regressive force” on climate change by watchdogs.
  • At least one environmental group has gone further, characterising the government’s response to the fires as “criminal negligence” in a call to action published on Wednesday.The group, Uni Students for Climate Justice, is among the organisers of the ‘Sack ScoMo’ protests that drew thousands into the streets Friday across at least ten Australian cities, demanding the prime minister’s resignation and urgent action on climate change.
  • Can barely capture the whole crowd.Huge climate/bushfires/dump ScoMo protest outside Sydney town hall.Has shut down George and Park Street intersection.

Climate at mercy of politics in 2020, experts warn

  • When nations struck the 2015 Paris agreement, which aims to limit temperature rises under 2 degrees Celsius, they agreed on five-year periods in which climate action could be implemented, assessed and boosted.
  • 2020 is the year the landmark deal goes into effect, yet almost three decades of diplomatic wrangling has fallen far short of what science says is needed to avert disastrous climate change.
  • "So that's four years of having a millstone around the neck of the world's efforts to deal with climate change."

Joaquin Phoenix Among Stars Arrested at Jane Fonda’s Climate Change Protest

  • Fresh off his Golden Globe win and ahead of Oscar nominations being announced, Joaquin Phoenix was arrested, along with other climate change protestors, on Friday, Variety has confirmed.
  • Jane Fonda’s last Fire Drill Friday protest in Washington, D.C., saw the actor march with hundreds, including stars Martin Sheen, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Susan Sarandon, and give a speech about the effects of the meat and dairy industries on climate change.
  • In her introduction, Fonda called Phoenix “one of the greatest living actors today.” “Something I think isn’t oftentimes talked about in the environmental movement or in the conversation about climate change is that the meat and dairy industry is the third leading cause of climate change,” he said.

PBS's Amanpour & Guest Trash Australian Prime Minister for Ignoring Climate 'Science'

  • Not included on the show was the opposite point of view, which has recently been highlighted by the right-leaning Climate Deport, which argues not only that Australia's current wildfires and high temperatures are not unprecedented, but that environmental activists are to blame for standing in the way of managing the nation's forests to hinder the growth of wildfires.
  • He also complained that the government has ignored the advice of environmental groups like his own: TIM FLANNERY, CLIMATE COUNCIL AUSTRALIA: Look, we have had the driest year on record, and it follows the previous year which was very dry as well.
  • And those conditions, they're part of the long-term trajectory of climate change, and have conspired together with a windy season to produce these horrific fire conditions, which have just gone on and on.

Jane Fonda Saved Her Best DC Fire Drill Friday for Last

  • Fire Drill Fridays have been a fixture in Washington since mid-October when Jane Fonda began a weekly climate strike in the nation’s capital inspired by Greta Thunberg and the youth climate strike movement.
  • The concept of Fire Drill Fridays is simple: Use Fonda and her friends’ celebrity to draw attention to the climate crisis and young adults, indigenous groups, and others on the frontlines and have been fighting to get the public to give a shit.
  • Fonda wasn’t among those arrested this time around because she’s gotten her ass arrested enough times by Capitol Police to risk legit jail time, but her famous friends along with climate luminaries like Naomi Klein and everyday folks stood on the steps as Capitol Police pushed the rest of the crowd to the edge of the Capitol grounds.

Geek of the Week: Maryssa Barron brings her (renewable) energy to clean tech and LevelTen

  • Has a degree in Social Anthropology from Harvard University where her research concentrated on environmental governance, specifically wildlife conservation and hunting on private game farms in South Africa.
  • LevelTen has raised $27 million in total funding in its bid to help companies “go green” and every day Barron and her co-workers work with corporate sustainability officers and energy managers at multinational corporations who she she said recognize that the changes their companies make could have a huge impact on reducing the rate of climate change, and they’re taking steps to do something about it.
  • Barron believes the sense of doom many of us feel when it comes to climate change is largely driven by the powerlessness that individuals, including herself, sometimes feel about being able to influence the direction of climate change.

Edition for 11 January 2020

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