Copenhagen Accord

The concept “Anthropocene” was originally proposed as a geological epoch in which humans have become a dominant driver of Earth System change (Crutzen, 2002). In recent years, the use of the term has broadened to signify (1) the novelty of the time period in which humans find themselves as a result of this; (2) the […]

The concept “Anthropocene” was originally proposed as a geological epoch in which humans have become a dominant driver of Earth System change (Crutzen, 2002). In recent years, the use of the term has broadened to signify (1) the novelty of the time period in which humans find themselves as a result of this; (2) the novel challenges, opportunities and uncertainties that awareness of global potency brings; and (3) the new perspectives required to deal with them. In the Anthropocene, change has reached the planetary level, not only through accumulation but also through the accelerating emergence of systemic symptoms of high magnitude and notable simultaneity and synchronicity (Steffen et al., 2015a). All aspects of these changes imply risk and security issues for nearer or more distant futures, from the unexpected magnitude of some processes to unperceived connections between them, to the crossing of planetary boundaries (Rockström et al., 2009 and Steffen et al., 2015b).

Human influence on the Earth System has been ongoing for centuries (Turner et al., 1990), yet only recently has it had significant implications for the structure and functioning of the Earth System at the planetary level (Steffen et al., 2015b). In the Anthropocene, humans are doing more than simply changing local land cover, extracting resources, and degrading the air, water, and soil. They have also become key drivers and amplifiers of planetary change, influencing large-scale processes and systems, including the climate, the oceans and terrestrial ecosystems, and ultimately the functioning of the Earth System as a whole. These intertwined and more complex socio-ecological systems are likely to exhibit more unexpected, emergent behaviors, with new risks and uncertainties.

Copenhagen Accord

1. We underline that climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time. We
emphasise our strong political will to urgently combat climate change in accordance with the principle ofcommon but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities. To achieve the ultimate objective of the Convention to stabilize greenhouse gas concentration in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system, we shall, recognizing the scientific view that the increase in global temperature should be below 2 degrees Celsius, on the basis of equity and in the context of sustainable development, enhance our long-term cooperative action to combat climate change. We recognize the critical impacts of climate change and the potential impacts of response measures on countries particularly vulnerable to its adverse effects and stress the need to
establish a comprehensive adaptation programme including international support.

Why did Copenhagen fail to deliver a climate deal?

Monoamine neurotransmitters

Monoamine neurotransmitters are neurotransmitters and neuromodulators that contain one amino group that is connected to an aromatic ring by a two-carbon chain (-CH2-CH2-). All monoamines are derived from aromatic amino acids like phenylalanine, tyrosine, tryptophan, and thethyroid hormones by the action of aromatic amino acid decarboxylase enzymes. Monoaminergic systems, i.e., the networks of neurons that […]

Monoamine neurotransmitters are neurotransmitters and neuromodulators that contain one amino group that is connected to an aromatic ring by a two-carbon chain (-CH2-CH2-). All monoamines are derived from aromatic amino acids like phenylalanine, tyrosine, tryptophan, and thethyroid hormones by the action of aromatic amino acid decarboxylase enzymes. Monoaminergic systems, i.e., the networks of neurons that utilize monoamine neurotransmitters, are involved in the regulation of cognitive processes such as emotion, arousal, and certain types of memory. It has been found that monoamine neurotransmitters play an important role in the secretion and production of neurotrophin-3 by astrocytes, a chemical which maintains neuron integrity and provides neurons with trophic support.[1] Drugs used to increase (or reduce) the effect of monoamine are sometimes used to treat patients with psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety, and schizophrenia.[2]

Oops! Low oil prices are related to a debt bubble

Originally posted on Our Finite World:
Why is the price of oil so low now? In fact, why are all commodity prices so low? I see the problem as being an affordability issue that has been hidden by a growing debt…

Our Finite World

Why is the price of oil so low now? In fact, why are all commodity prices so low? I see the problem as being an affordability issue that has been hidden by a growing debt bubble. As this debt bubble has expanded, it has kept the sales prices of commodities up with the cost of extraction (Figure 1), even though wages have not been rising as fast as commodity prices since about the year 2000. Now many countries are cutting back on the rate of debt growth because debt/GDP ratios are becoming unreasonably high, and because the productivity of additional debt is falling.

If wages are stagnating, and debt is not growing very rapidly, the price of commodities tends to fall back to what is affordable by consumers. This is the problem we are experiencing now (Figure 1). 

Figure 1. Author's illustration of problem we are now encountering. Figure 1. Author’s illustration of problem we are now encountering.

I will…

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2016: Oil Limits and the End of the Debt Supercycle

Originally posted on Our Finite World:
What is ahead for 2016? Most people don’t realize how tightly the following are linked: Growth in debt Growth in the economy Growth in cheap-to-extract energy supplies Inflation in the cost of producing commodities…

Our Finite World

What is ahead for 2016? Most people don’t realize how tightly the following are linked:

  1. Growth in debt
  2. Growth in the economy
  3. Growth in cheap-to-extract energy supplies
  4. Inflation in the cost of producing commodities
  5. Growth in asset prices, such as the price of shares of stock and of farmland
  6. Growth in wages of non-elite workers
  7. Population growth

It looks to me as though this linkage is about to cause a very substantial disruption to the economy, as oil limits, as well as other energy limits, cause a rapid shift from the benevolent version of the economic supercycle to the portion of the economic supercycle reflecting contraction. Many people have talked about Peak Oil, the Limits to Growth, and the Debt Supercycle without realizing that the underlying problem is really the same–the fact the we are reaching the limits of a finite world.

There are actually a number of different…

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Why are we doing this?

Originally posted on Sonia Furstenau:
It’s hard to believe what’s going on in Shawnigan Lake. Doctors, realtors, teachers, home builders, nurses, scientists, young mothers and fathers, grandparents – people from all walks of life are putting their lives aside to…

Sonia Furstenau

SIA Protest Stebbings Road-2

It’s hard to believe what’s going on in Shawnigan Lake.

Doctors, realtors, teachers, home builders, nurses, scientists, young mothers and fathers, grandparents – people from all walks of life are putting their lives aside to give all their energy and effort to one thing: trying to stop the loads of contaminated soil being dumped on a mountain above our lake where the headwaters of our watershed flow.

And while the people gather over and over again there is a resounding silence from the provincial government.

Premier Christy Clark, Minister of Environment Mary Polak, and the Liberal MLAs are putting holiday greetings out on their social media pages, wishing everyone a safe and happy break, urging people to enjoy time with their families.

But there is not even a whisper from this government about what is happening in Shawnigan Lake, where hundreds get up in the freezing dark to stand on…

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Tree Poaching In Old Growth Forest Along the Smith River

Originally posted on Siskiyou Land Conservancy:
There’s tree poaching going on in the Smith River National Recreation Area (SRNRA), near Big Flat on the South Fork Smith River. Not just any trees, but some of the biggest, oldest madrones in…

Siskiyou Land Conservancy

MadronePoach15N38Dec2015#2

There’s tree poaching going on in the Smith River National Recreation Area (SRNRA), near Big Flat on the South Fork Smith River. Not just any trees, but some of the biggest, oldest madrones in the region. It’s a tragic, bitter loss of some of the finest trees around, in protected old growth area. If you have information about who might be doing this please contact us or go directly to the law enforcement officer for the SRNRA: Jeremy Mack, 707-457-3874. (Please call only if you have information. Incredibly, Mack is the only enforcement officer for the entire 305,000-acre Smith River National Recreation Area.)

According to officials at the SRNRA, tree poaching is “a forest-wide problem.” In this case, it appears that the perpetrators, who cut down the giant madrones but left them, were planning to return to the site with a crane and a flatbed truck to haul out whole trees, probably for…

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Bees

Lowes and Home Depot have agreed to take action on pesticides that are deadly to bees. So why haven’t Ace and True Value agreed to do the same? Bees are dying at a record pace. Tell Ace Hardware and True … Continue reading

Lowes and Home Depot have agreed to take action on pesticides that are deadly to bees. So why haven’t Ace and True Value agreed to do the same?

Bees are dying at a record pace. Tell Ace Hardware and True Value to stop selling bee-killing pesticides »

Arnulfo — Bees are in critical danger.

Each year, researchers and beekeepers are seeing weakened and abandoned hives, and entire colonies falling apart in a phenomenon called colony collapse disorder. More than 40% of honeybee colonies died in the past year alone.

But the good news is that we have a simple solution that could begin to restore the bee population immediately: Stopping the sale and use of a deadly class of pesticides — neonicotinoids — that are linked to bee deaths.

Report after report has linked neonicotinoids to mass bee deaths — the EPA has even called them “highly toxic” to bees. But we’ve won this fight before. After huge public outcry and hundreds of thousands of petitions delivered, retail giants Lowes and Home Depot agreed to take actions, like labeling and selling plants not treated with neonicotinoids, to limit bees’ exposure to these dangerous pesticides.

Yet Ace and True Value have not promised any actions to help protect our bee populations. The longer they keep selling neonicotinoids, and plants treated with them, the harder it’s going to be to save the bees.

If we want to save the bees, we need Ace and True Value to take action to limit bees’ exposure to neonicotinoids. Speak out today!

Bees may sound easy to dismiss, but one-third of the food produced in North America, including nearly 100 varieties of fruits and vegetables, rely on honeybees for pollination. Without them, our national food security, and an estimated $15 billion a year in U.S. agriculture production, are all at risk.

Lowes and Home Depot’s decisions to limit exposure and use of neonicotinoids is an important step to saving countless bees — and that was all because of people like you who took a few minutes to speak out. There’s absolutely no reason why Ace and True Value shouldn’t follow suit — Ace has already indicated that it would be willing to move away from neonicotinoids. But it’s going to take full-fledged commitments to clear their shelves of deadly pesticides to save the bees. To get there, we need to push them over the edge. And that starts with you.

Let’s put an end to these deadly pesticides TODAY.

End the Bee-pocalypse for good! Tell Ace and True Value to limit the sale and exposure to deadly chemicals that are killing our bees »

Arnulfo, we’re not going to be able to flip a switch and save every bee from deadly pesticides. But we have clear steps on how we can get to that point, and it starts with Ace and True Value. These hardware stores rely on you to keep their doors open. If you speak out now, they’ll listen.

We can still save the bees, but we’re running out of time. Thank you for telling Ace and True Value to protect our bees today.

Sincerely,
signature
Kristin Brown
Director of Digital Strategy
League of Conservation Voters

Falling in Love with the Earth by Thich Nhat Hanh – statement on Climate Change for the United Nations

Originally posted on Mindfulness Friends:
This beautiful, bounteous, life-giving planet we call Earth has given birth to each one of us, and each one of us carries the Earth within every cell of our body. We and the Earth are…

Originally posted on Mindfulness Friends:

This beautiful, bounteous, life-giving planet we call Earth has given birth to each one of us, and each one of us carries the Earth within every cell of our body.

We and the Earth are one

The Earth is our mother, nourishing and protecting us in every moment–giving us air to breathe, fresh water to drink, food to eat and healing herbs to cure us when we are sick. Every breath we inhale contains our planet’s nitrogen, oxygen, water vapor and trace elements. When we breathe with mindfulness, we can experience our interbeing with the Earth’s delicate atmosphere, with all the plants, and even with the sun, whose light makes possible the miracle of photosynthesis. With every breath we can experience communion. With every breath we can savor the wonders of life.

We need to change our way of thinking and seeing things. We need to realise that the Earth…

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For my Friend John: How do you “Do” Permaculture in the City?

Originally posted on Silvia Di Blasio:
“All the darkness in the world cannot extinguish the light of a single candle.” ~ Francis of Assisi, The Little Flowers of St. Francis of Assisi ? “Permaculture gives people a place to be…

Originally posted on Silvia Di Blasio:

All the darkness in the world cannot extinguish the light of a single candle.”

~ Francis of Assisi, The Little Flowers of St. Francis of Assisi

Permaculture gives people a place to be a part of the solution” ~ Rosemary Morrow (one of the oldest and wisest Permaculture grandmothers, works with refugee camps, war-torn communities and people in developing countries)

me and my produce

“But, how do you ‘do’ Permaculture living in the city?” that was my colleague and good friend John’s question…and the question that reflects my own everyday struggle and the one that started this blog in the first place: if you don’t have access to land, if you have lived a somewhat “mainstream” life, if you have a family, a mortgage and a full time job and are stuck in the city or the suburbs, how do you “do” Permaculture?

With all the pressure, hopes and frustration…

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