Each of us can make a positive difference stepping up & doing our best / Becoming Planet Citizens
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Stories Featured on GreenPolicy360's Eco-Network
China moves ahead on green public transportation, the US lags behind on new economic/energy strategies, builds up it military budget and announces a new generation of nuclear weapons, while threatening economic and 'hot wars' across the planet -- against Iran, N.Korea, Venezuela, against Russia, China... launching punitive actions against former European allies as treaties, agreements, cooperative talks breakdown and polls indicate, internationally, that the public is turning away from support of US initiatives
The US initiates a trade war and tariffs against China and in response the Chinese accelerate their Eurasian strategy, alternative global supply chains, alternative alliances and military/nuclear development. Alternative exchange, financial and trading systems, moving away from the dollar and petrodollar, are in process. The geo-political relationships of the past are giving way and many are asking what the latter years of the 21st century will bring as global climate impacts across interconnected environments roll out...
Follow GreenPolicy360 on international strategic/military/nuclear issues at www.strategicdemands.com
Keep thinking, keep moving, watch the winds, be agile and resilient
Money Talks, Opponents of U.S. Climate Action Listen
The Climate Action Now Act, passed last week by the House in a 231-190 vote, would bar the U.S. from pulling out of the 2016 Paris Agreement, the landmark accord that seeks to limit global temperature increases tied to greenhouse gas emissions. President Donald Trump announced in June 2017 that the U.S. would withdraw from the agreement. The bill would require the Trump administration to submit an annual plan for complying with the agreement, including a 26 to 28 percent reduction from 2005 greenhouse gas emission levels.
A MapLight analysis of Federal Election Campaign data found that 65 House members who opposed the measure received $268,965 from the 10 largest oil and gas companies in the U.S. since the beginning of the year. Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., has received $35,300 from the fossil fuel giants since the start of the 2019-20 election cycle — the most of any lawmaker. Rep. Cedric Richmond, D-La., received $8,500 from the oil and gas companies, the most of any cosponsor. Twenty-five supporters of the legislation received a total of $78,850 from the oil and gas companies, according to FEC data.
Marathon Petroleum Corp. contributed $131,000 to lawmakers who didn’t support the bill, more than any of the top 10 U.S. companies. The Findlay, Ohio-based oil company, which publishes an annual report on the risks and opportunities presented by climate change, gave $16,750 to seven supporters of the legislation.
ExxonMobil, the world’s largest oil and gas company, gave $43,750 to 20 supporters of the climate bill, as well as $75,500 to 34 members who declined to support the measure. The Irving, Texas-based giant has vehemently denied reports that its scientists knew about the effects of greenhouse gas emissions for a half-century and took no action.
The House climate bill, sponsored by Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Fla., can now be considered by the Senate. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., however, has promised “this futile gesture to handcuff the U.S. economy through the ill-fated Paris deal will go nowhere here in the Senate.”
Maplight, Revealing Money's Influence on Politics
The MapLight analysis considered 2019-20 election cycle donations by the 10 largest U.S. energy companies and their employees, ranked by market capitalization as of May 7, 2019. The companies include Exxon Mobil Corp. ($324.6 billion); Chevron Corp. ($225.3 billion); ConocoPhillips ($68.9 billion); EOG Resources Inc. ($53.3 billion); Occidental Petroleum Corp. ($44.7 billion); Marathon Petroleum Corp. ($40 billion); Phillips 66 ($39.3 billion) Anadarko Petroleum Corp. ($38.1 billion); Valero Energy Corp. ($35.2 billion); and Pioneer Natural Resources Co. ($24.9 billion).
Eight European countries have called for an ambitious strategy to tackle climate change – and to spend a quarter of the entire EU budget on fighting it.
The joint statement says the EU should have net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 "at the latest".
It was signed by France, Belgium, Denmark, Luxemburg, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, and Sweden.
The group says their plan can "go hand in hand with prosperity" and "set an example for other countries to follow."
Bill McKibben, Planet Citizen
Bill McKibben, GreenPolicy360's former adviser, writes of climate change/global warming and the existential threat we all face.
Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out? / Henry Holt and Co.
In the 30 years I’ve been working on this crisis, we’ve seen all 20 of the hottest years ever recorded. So far, we have warmed the earth by roughly two degrees Fahrenheit, which in a masterpiece of understatement the New York Times once described as “a large number for the surface of an entire planet.” This is humanity’s largest accomplishment, and indeed the largest thing any one species has ever done on our planet, at least since the days two billion years ago when cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) flooded the atmosphere with oxygen, killing off much of the rest of the archaic life on the planet. “Faster than expected” is the watchword of climate scientists—the damage to ice caps and oceans that scientists (conservative by nature) predicted for the end of the century showed up decades early. “I’ve never been at a climate conference where people say ‘that happened slower than I thought it would,’” one polar expert observed in the spring of 2018. At about the same time, a team of economists reported that there was a 35 percent chance that the United Nations’ previous “worst-case scenario” for global warming was in fact too optimistic. In January 2019 scientists concluded the Earth’s oceans were warming 40 percent faster than previously believed.
“We are now truly in uncharted territory ... physical threats so different in quantity that they become different in quality, their effects so far-reaching that we can’t be confident of surviving them with our civilizations more or less intact.
One is large-scale nuclear war; it’s always worth recalling J. Robert Oppenheimer’s words as he watched the first bomb test, quoting from Hindu scripture: “Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.” So far, the cobbled-together and jury-rigged international efforts to forestall an atomic war have worked, and indeed, for much of the last 50 years those safeguards, formal and informal, have seemed to be strengthening. That we have nuclear nightmares again is mostly testimony to the childishness of President Trump and his pal in North Korea—they seem nearly alone in not understanding “why we can’t use them.”
Second on that list of threats is the small group of chemicals that, just in time, scientists discovered were eroding the ozone layer, a protective shield that 99 percent of us didn’t even know existed. Had those scientists not sounded the alarm, we would have walked blindly off a cliff—literally, in many cases, as cataracts are one of the most common symptoms of being bathed in the ultraviolet radiation that the ozone layer blocks. Within a decade, the chemical companies had ceased their obstruction and the Montreal Protocol began removing chlorofluorocarbons from the atmosphere. The ozone hole over the Antarctic now grows smaller with each decade, and now scientists expect it will be wholly healed by 2060.
And the third, of course, is climate change, perhaps the greatest of all these challenges...
This year's Earth Day is Protect Our Species and draws draw attention to rapid global destruction of species and reduction of the world's plant and wildlife populations.
"All living things have an intrinsic value, and each plays a unique role in the complex web of life. We must work together to protect endangered and threatened species."
Dwindling population sizes and range shrinkages amount to a massive anthropogenic erosion of biodiversity and of the ecosystem services essential to civilization. This biological annihilation underlines the seriousness for humanity of Earth’s ongoing sixth mass extinction event.
We now need... sustained and collaborative action with one common goal: to eliminate our carbon emissions as soon as possible and replace our dependence on coal, oil and gas with clean sources of energy that don’t produce carbon pollution. This means solutions large and small, mundane and inspiring.
Greta Speaks to the European Union
Our Planet's #PlanetCitizen David Attenborough... “Fifty years ago, we didn’t even realize what the problem was. Maybe thirty years ago we did recognize what the problem was but didn’t know much about it, thinking, 'That’s way in the future'. Now we know that it’s right here ahead of us.”
"We don't know a planet like this." That was the reaction of meteorologist Eric Holthaus to news that atmospheric carbon dioxide levels have reached heights not seen in the entirety of human existence -- not history, existence.
According to data from the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii, the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere is over 415 parts per million (ppm), far higher than at any point in the last 800,000 years, since before the evolution of homo sapiens.
- Weather +
- April 19: 413.86 ppm
- April 18: 413.43 ppm
- April 17: 413.63 ppm
- Oh Mauna, what a Keeling Curve you have
- Keeling's Curve has been called one of the most important scientific works of the 20th century
- Eurasia, Trade, Economic Development, Environmental Impacts & Risks
- 21st Century -- GeoPolitical Shift
Kids in 123 countries strike to protect the climate
“This movement had to happen, we didn’t have a choice.”
An estimated 1.4 million young people in 123 countries skipped school Friday to demand stronger climate policies in what may be one of the largest environmental protests in history.
Looking to the Future --- and the Perils of 'Short-term' Thinking
Our inability to look beyond the latest news cycle and distractions of the day
The 22nd Century: Get Ready, It's Not So Far Away As You Might Think It Is
It’s a milestone year frequently cited in climate change news reports, stories about future technologies and science fiction. But it’s so far ahead, clouded with so many possibilities, that the route we will take to get there is difficult to see. I rarely consider that, like my daughter, millions of people alive today will be there as 2100 arrives, inheriting the century my generation will leave behind. All the decisions we make, for better and worse, will be theirs to live with.
Modern society is suffering from “temporal exhaustion”, the sociologist Elise Boulding once said. “If one is mentally out of breath all the time from dealing with the present, there is no energy left for imagining the future...” We can only guess her reaction to the relentless, Twitter-fuelled politics of 2019. No wonder wicked problems like climate change or inequality feel so hard to tackle right now.
That's why researchers, artists, technologists and philosophers are converging on the idea that short-termism may be the greatest threat our species is facing this century.
New solutions are needed for a global arms control architecture.
Rethinking Arms Control... Understanding and responding to the challenges of the 21st Century.
Global Poll (Pew Research): Climate change increasingly ranks as the world’s most pressing security threat
Fears about American power grow
Nations in the survey say the influence of the U.S. is a major threat to their countries, (and) more people now say it is a threat than in 2013 and 2017. Indeed, in 10 countries, roughly half or more now claim that American power is a major threat to their nation.
Via the New York Times / Rift Between Trump and Europe Is Now Open and Angry
Europeans push back against the Trump administration’s unilateralism
Visit GreenPolicy360's associate -- #StrategicDemands
U.S. President, rejecting climate science consensus, announces conference of climate science deniers
Climate Science Continues to Advance Despite Science Denial in the White House
Top U.S. Universities, Science Research, Technology and Applications Join Together
School of Science | MIT News | Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences
Caltech, in partnership with the MIT School of Science, the Naval Postgraduate School, and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
Facing the certainty of a changing climate coupled with the uncertainty that remains in predictions of how it will change, scientists and engineers from across the country are teaming up to build a new type of climate model that is designed to provide more precise and actionable predictions.
Leveraging recent advances in the computational and data sciences, the comprehensive effort capitalizes on vast amounts of data that are now available and on increasingly powerful computing capabilities both for processing data and for simulating the Earth system.
The new model will be built by a consortium of researchers led by Caltech, in partnership with MIT; the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS); and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), which Caltech manages for NASA. The consortium, dubbed the Climate Modeling Alliance (CliMA), plans to fuse Earth observations and high-resolution simulations into a model that represents important small-scale features, such as clouds and turbulence, more reliably than existing climate models. The goal is a climate model that projects future changes in critical variables such as cloud cover, rainfall, and sea ice extent more accurately — with uncertainties at least half the size of those in existing models...
February 12, 2019
Glimpse the future climate in US cities via the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science
The interactive mapping uses 12 different measures to describe climate, including minimum and maximum temperature and total precipitation for winter, spring, summer and fall. Two emissions scenarios are considered – one that assumes high current emissions continue and one that assumes emissions peak mid-century and then decline. Numerous future climate forecasts are considered as generated by 27 different climate models.
February 7, 2019
February 5, 2019
- Vision Problem: Via the Washington Post / The "Glaring Hole" as Trump Gives State of the Union Speech
- “The Trump administration has been silencing science for 2 years now and pretending that climate change doesn’t exist, despite the excellent work of [its] own scientists. Trump’s SOTU was more of the same,” Joel Clement, Harvard Center for Science and International Affairs.
- Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.), new chair of the House Committee on Natural Resources, tweeted, “Trump and his cronies have spent the last 2 years leaving our environmental future in the hands of the fossil fuel industry, denying #ClimateChange, and imperiling the public health of our communities.” That committee holds a hearing today on climate change impacts and the need for action.
- Rep. Frank Pallone Jr. (D-N.J.), new chair of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, tweeted, “We heard a lot of talk from @realDonaldTrump tonight on manufactured crises, but we heard nothing on one of the most important challenges of our time: #ClimateChange.” The committee holds a hearing today on addressing the environmental and economic effects of climate change.
- Last year was Earth's 4th-warmest year on record, coming in behind 2016, the planet's warmest recorded year, according to information released Wednesday by NOAA, NASA and the U.K. Met Office.
- Intermediate Nuclear Forces Treaty Threatened
Photo via the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust/Charlotte Rhodes
Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, Caring and Protecting
The DSWT/KWS Mara Mobile Veterinary Unit works hard to protect the wildlife in this stunning pocket of Kenya. Wondering what kind of patients we encounter?
- • https://www.facebook.com/thedswt/photos/the-dswtkws-mara-mobile-veterinary-unit-works-hard-to-protect-the-wildlife-in-th/10153841155309889/
GreenPolicy360 in Clearwater/St.Pete/Tampa, encouraging and assisting in the start-up of the new U.S. House climate change committee. Go Kathy Castor, move with all due speed ! The times demand decisive action.
Follow Progress of the Green New Deal at GreenPolicy's New Deal Site
More re: the risks of nuclear weapons @StrategicDemands, GreenPolicy360's associate
“The blindness and stupidity of the politicians and their consultants is truly shocking in the face of nuclear catastrophe,” Brown said. “We know that thousands of these weapons on high alert could be launched by mistake…. We are almost like travelers on the Titanic, seeing the iceberg up ahead but enjoying the elegant dining and the music.”
“The danger and probability is mounting that there will be some kind of nuclear incident that will kill millions, if not initiating exchanges that will kill billions.”
Six milestones—in energy, transport, land use, industry, infrastructure, and finance—that would need to be met by 2020 to bend the curve in global greenhouse gas emissions and put the world on a pathway consistent with the Paris international climate agreement.
Andrew Wheeler, Trump's EPA pick says climate change 'not the greatest crisis'. The former coal lobbyist took over the EPA when his predecessor Scott Pruitt resigned after months of controversy. Wheeler says, in confirmation hearings (reported by few media outlets), that "he is carrying out the president’s “regulatory reform agenda” and that the US is the “gold standard for environmental progress”.
Economically feasible CO2 reduction of emissions?
Via CNN / Carbon emissions increased 3.4% in 2018, marking the second-largest annual gain in more than two decades, according to preliminary power generation data analyzed by the Rhodium Group, an independent economic policy research provider... US power sector emissions as a whole rose by 1.9% and that the transportation sector "held its title as the largest source of US emissions for the third year running," due to a growth in demand for diesel and jet fuel offsetting a modest decline in gasoline use.
The lack of strategy in the country's decarbonization efforts, the research says, has contributed to the gap in meeting the goal set in the Paris Agreement on climate change, a landmark 2015 accord that the US Trump administration has promised to abandon. President Trump has at times denied the basic science of climate change, which states that burning coal, oil and natural gas produces emissions that trap heat in the atmosphere, warming the planet. But it has become increasingly clear that warming is happening faster than previously thought and with worse results.
Brookings climate study: The Paris international climate agreement "significantly reduces" carbon emissions relative to a business-as-usual case. But it also further confirms how much existing pledges, called nationally determined contributions, are nonetheless insufficient.
The clock, physics, politics demand action.
January 1, 2019
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December 30, 2018
GreenPolicy360 Siterunner: William Westermeyer writes of a science agency that was established thru the work of Congressman George E Brown, Congressman from East LA and a leader of California's initiatives in environmental science. Gingrich disbanded the US Office of Technology Assessment in the 1995, after its warning on climate change. Today, the science office to advise the president, Office of Science and Technology Policy also brought into existence by George Brown, is moribund with its science executive positions going unfilled. The president is on record saying he doesn't need the science... The nation, and world, heads into 2019 as science and guidance of visionary leaders are set aside.
On the 50th Anniversary of the Apollo 8 Mission ...
Planet Citizens in Action
Can the world kick its fossil-fuel addiction fast enough?
GreenPolicy360 and our Associate StrategicDemands.com explore Earth's existential threat environment
- Escalating Risk of Use of Nuclear Weapons
- Warning to Today's Generation
- Planet Citizens, Look to the Future
US Departure from International Cooperation:
"Sovereignty", the New Administration's Buzzword
The International Climate Agreement goes forward without the US
Nations around the world reject the US decision
Climate News / Climate Focus, Climate Politics
Battle in the US Congress between the Climate Denial faction and Science Advocates
- GreenPolicy360 and Strategic Demands Advance New Definitions of National Security
Mick Mulvaney, President Trump’s budget director:
“Regarding the question as to climate change, I think the President was fairly straightforward —
We’re not spending money on that anymore; we consider that to be a waste of your money to go out and do that.”
- White House budget director Mick Mulvaney rejects climate as a security issue:
- “Regarding the question as to climate change, I think the president was fairly straightforward – we’re not spending money on that anymore. We consider that to be a waste of your money.”
- "It would be sad, and dare I say even catastrophic, were special interests to prevail over the common good and lead to manipulating information in order to protect their own plans and interests"...
- "The Pope took particular aim at those who reject the science behind global warming..."
"What's up with sea level rise?"
Destruction of Life, Large 'Charismatic' Creatures & the "Tiny Little Ones"
The 8 Million+ Species We Don’t Know
By Edward O. Wilson / NY Times
The most striking fact about the living environment may be how little we know about it. Even the number of living species can be only roughly calculated. A widely accepted estimate by scientists puts the number at about 10 million. In contrast, those formally described, classified and given two-part Latinized names (Homo sapiens for humans, for example) number slightly more than two million. With only about 20 percent of its species known and 80 percent undiscovered, it is fair to call Earth a little-known planet.
- To effectively manage protected habitats, we must also learn more about all the species of our planet and their interactions within ecosystems.
The best-explored groups of organisms are the vertebrates (mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fishes), along with plants, especially trees and shrubs. Being conspicuous, they are what we familiarly call “wildlife.” A great majority of other species, however, are by far also the most abundant. I like to call them “the little things that run the world.” They teem everywhere, in great number and variety in and on all plants, throughout the soil at our feet and in the air around us. They are the protists, fungi, insects, crustaceans, spiders, pauropods, centipedes, mites, nematodes and legions of others whose scientific names are seldom heard by the bulk of humanity. In the sea and along its shores swarm organisms of the other living world — marine diatoms, crustaceans, ascidians, sea hares, priapulids, coral, loriciferans and on through the still mostly unfilled encyclopedia of life.
Do not call these organisms “bugs” or “critters.” They too are wildlife. Let us learn their correct names and care about their safety. Their existence makes possible our own. We are wholly dependent on them.
"Tiny Blue Green"
- More than Meets the Eye
"A single kind of blue-green algae in the ocean produces the oxygen in one of every five breaths we take"
- ~ from "The World Is Blue: How Our Fate and the Ocean’s Are One" by Sylvia Earle
Seventy percent of the Earth's surface is ocean and here, in myriad life forms, "tiny blue-green" organisms are essential to preserving life on the planet
The Unseen and the Seen
- A 21st Century paradigm in development @ GreenPolicy360
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- New Media Rights - http://www.newmediarights.org/
- Online Magna Carta - http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/mar/12/online-magna-carta-berners-lee-web 
- Open Access Publishing - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_access
- Open Congress (U.S.) - https://www.opencongress.org/
- Open Data Institute UK-Int'l - http://TheODI.org/about-us - http://TheGuardian.com/public-leaders-network/2013/oct/22/open-data-institute-summit-gavin-starks
- Open Data movement_Wikipedia - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_Data
- Open Data Nation - http://www.opendatanation.com/ ("Smart Cities and Small Businesses")
- Open Data Research Network - http://opendataresearch.org/
- Open Data - World Bank - http://data.worldbank.org/
- OpenDemocracy - https://www.opendemocracy.net/about
- (TW) https://twitter.com/opendemocracy
- Open Government Initiative (US) - http://www.whitehouse.gov/open
- Open Government in Practice - https://openlibrary.org/books/OL24435672M/Open_Government
- Open Government Partnership - International - http://OpenGovPartnership.org
- Open Institute - http://openinstitute.com/
- Open Knowledge Foundation Lab - http://okfn.org/
- (Blog) PublicBodies.org - http://blog.okfn.org/2013/07/09/introducing-open-knowledge-foundation-labs/
- Open Rights Group - https://www.openrightsgroup.org/
- Open Science - http://opensciencefederation.com/
- Open Secrets/Center for Responsive Politics - http://www.opensecrets.org/
- Open Source @Wikipedia - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_source
- Open Source Hardware (wiki) - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_source_hardware
- Open Standards Principles (UK) - https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/open-standards-principles/open-standards-principles
- Open State Foundation - http://www.openstate.eu/
- Open Technology Institute/New America Foundation - http://newamerica.org/oti/
- OpenGov Foundation - http://OpenGovFoundation.org
- OpenGov Hub - https://twitter.com/OpenGovHub
- OpenMedia International - https://openmedia.org/
- OpenNet Initiative - http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/research/opennet
- Peer 2 Peer-P2P Foundation - http://p2pfoundation.net/
- Personal Democracy Forum/Media - https://personaldemocracy.com/
- Civic Hall - http://civichall.org/
- Piwik analytics - http://piwik.org/
- Privacy Rights in the Digital Age (Published 2016)
- Project on Government Oversight - http://www.pogo.org/
- PublicAgenda - http://PublicAgenda.org
- Public Resource Org ("Making Government Information More Accessible") - https://public.resource.org/
- RDF Standards - http://W3.org/RDF
- Reform Government Surveillance - https://www.reformgovernmentsurveillance.com/
- Research Data Sharing without Barriers - https://RD-Alliance.org
- Reset the Net - https://www.resetthenet.org/
- SafeGov - http://www.safegov.org/
- Save the Internet (US) - http://www.savetheinternet.com/sti-home
- Schneier on Security - https://www.schneier.com/about.html
- Software Freedom Law Center - https://www.softwarefreedom.org/
- SpiderOak - https://spideroak.com/
- State Decoded - http://StateDecoded.com
- Sunlight Foundation - http://sunlightfoundation.com/
- (FB) https://www.facebook.com/sunlightfoundation
- (G+) https://plus.google.com/+sunlightfoundation/posts
- (TW) https://twitter.com/sunfoundation
- Measuring the Impact of Open Data
- The Constituent (US) - https://The-Constituent.com
- Thoughtworks - http://www.thoughtworks.com/
- UN/United Nations Promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism - https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/10/15/un-investigator-report-condemns-mass-surveillance/
- US Gov-EPA Databases - http://Water.EPA.gov/aboutow/owow/data.cfm
- VYPR VPN - http://www.goldenfrog.com/vyprvpn
- Web We Want (World Wide Web Foundation) - http://webfoundation.org/2013/12/announcing-the-web-we-want/ - https://webwewant.org/
- WebTAP / Web Transparency & Accountability Project (Princeton University) - https://webtap.princeton.edu/
- Jimmy Wales / Founder - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jimmy_Wales
- Wikiversity - https://en.wikiversity.org/wiki/Wikiversity:Main_Page
- World Summit on the Information Society +10/ - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Summit_on_the_Information_Society
- Worldwide Web Consortium - http://www.w3.org/
- WWW Origins-Foundation, est. by World Wide Web founder Tim Berners-Lee, "devoted to all people having access to the Web"
- WebFoundation.org -- "The Web Belongs to All of Us"
Green360 Popular Pages & Index of Files