What’s Hot in Climate Change, June 2017

Welcome back to What’s Hot in Climate Change!  We start out with concerning new research that shows the planet may cross the 1.5C threshold of warming within 15 years.  The 1.5C threshold is what the Paris Climate Talks identified as an important goal to hold global warming under.  One result of global warming is sea level rise.  A recent study of US population displacement shows us that sea level rise is not just a coastal problem, but a problem for those places where the people displaced from the coasts will end up. If all this concerns you, there are plenty of ways we can help keep the temperature below 1.5 C.  Tesla is taking deposits for their amazing, new solar roofing that looks like a regular Read More …

What’s Hot in Climate Change, Jan 2017

It’s been a while since “What’s Hot” was posted, and a lot has happened.  Trump is now President of the US, for better or worse.  What the impact will be is not entirely known, although he has installed possibly the worst cabinet imaginable with respect to the environment.  Scott Pruitt, former Oklahoma Attorney General and industry shill, caps the list of robber barons as the newly nominated head of the EPA .  Although in typical Trump fashion he is sending mixed signals.  He recently cancelled the Transpacific Partnership, which may actually be a good move for the environment, because the TPP would have allowed other countries to challenge or supersede US environmental regulations. Beyond Trump there were a few other major stories that stood out over the Read More …

Renewable Energy Jobs Keep Growing While Fossil Fuel Jobs Keep Shrinking!

More than 8.1 million people are now employed by the renewable energy industry worldwide, an increase of five percent over last year, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). The number of renewable energy jobs worldwide went up in 2015 while jobs in the broader energy sector fell. In the United States, for example, renewable…

The climate agreement, 2 degrees, and your children’s future

Not too long ago, just after the Paris COP21 climate meeting, I read two interesting articles that contradicted each other.  The first said “COP21: Paris deal far too weak to prevent devastating climate change, academics warn.”  The second was more optimistic, “Rapid switch to renewable energy can put Paris climate goals within reach.” “So which is it?”, I wondered. The first one discussed a letter sent by eleven supposedly prominent climate scientists to The Independent that warned that the climate deal reached at the COP21 gives “false hope” and will result in insufficient action being taken. A few choice quotes from the letter sent to The Independent include: “ The hollow cheering of success at the end of the COP21 agreement proved yet again that Read More …

The shocking truth about alternative energy!

If you want to save money switch to LED lighting, insulate your home and buy energy-efficient appliances.  If you want to keep carbon dioxide out of the air the single biggest thing you can do is switch to alternative energy. That’s the “shocking truth”.  Why shocking?  Because no other single thing you do as an individual will have as big an impact on climate change.   In this post you will see the huge impact you can make by switching to alternative energy and how to get it for your home.  You can save money, prevent carbon dioxide from being released into the atmosphere, and improve you and your family’s health, all by switching to alternative energy. Getting your home powered by alternative energy may seem like a daunting task, Read More …

How to prepare for flooding caused by climate change

In a previous post on extreme weather and flooding we learned that human-caused climate change is driving the increase in big storms and flooding, not just in the U.S., but around the world. People are dying, and more lives and property are at increased risk. Some important questions we could ask, include… What is the link between climate change and flooding? What are the health risks from extreme precipitation and flooding? How can we prepare? What do we do if we get flooded? How do we keep it from getting worse? Linking climate change and flooding Put in simple terms, burning of fossil fuels puts more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere –> more carbon dioxide traps more heat in the atmosphere –> more heat causes more heat Read More …

China Outshines U.S. On Climate Change

The big climate change news from the last few weeks is that China has finally released it’s CO2 mitigation plan. It’s fairly impressive, all things considered. I’d call it a good start, and even though it’s fairly ambitious; however, just like the U.S. plan — it falls far short of what will eventually be required. But let’s just be hopeful for the moment. Here’s a quick rundown of what China proposes… Cut the amount of greenhouse gas emitted per unit GDP to 60-65% of 2005 levels by 2030 Put a nationwide cap and trade program for carbon dioxide in place for industry (they already have several pilot programs modelled after California’s cap and trade system) Increase the use of alternative energy to about 20% of Read More …