Transition Brockville archive

Category : Big picture (608)

Climate change to take big chunk of Canadian economy

Globe and Mail / Bob Weber / 22 April 2021

Canada will be more than $100 billion poorer by 2050 if the world doesn’t work harder to fight climate change, says one of the world’s largest insurers.

That anticipated drop in GDP is much higher than the economic effect the COVID-19 pandemic is projected to have on the country’s gross domestic product, said Jerome Haegeli, chief economist for Swiss Re, a multinational corporation that insures insurance companies, large corporations and governments.

“That’s huge,” Haegeli said from Zurich on Thursday.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

‘Relentless’ climate crisis intensified in 2020, says UN report

The Guardian / Damian Carrington / 19 April 2021

There was a “relentless” intensification of the climate crisis in 2020, according to the UN’s World Meteorological Organization.

The coronavirus pandemic made the accelerating impacts of global heating even worse for millions of people. But the temporary dip in carbon emissions due to lockdowns had no discernible impact on atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases, the WMO report said.

Last year was ranked as the hottest on record, in a tie with 2016 and 2019, despite the cooling effect of the cyclical natural climate phenomenon, La Niña. Without this, 2020 would most likely have been the hottest year yet. The decade 2011-20 was the hottest on record.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Exploring timelapse in Google Earth

Google / 15 April 2021

See humanity’s impact on the Earth through a global time-lapse video of the planet since 1984.

Benefits of ‘drastic’ climate action outweigh costs: economists

CTV News / Patrick Galey / 30 March 2021

The cost of global warming will far outweigh the cost of rapidly cutting greenhouse gas emissions, more than 700 economists from around the world said Tuesday in an unprecedented call to climate action.

A major international survey found that nearly three-quarters of the economists responding believed that “immediate and drastic” action was needed to limit the fallout of climate change, warning that the costs of failing to slash carbon pollution would rapidly balloon to reach trillions of dollars every year.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Value(s) by Mark Carney – call for a new kind of economics

The Guardian / Will Hutton / 21 March 2021

In a mix of rich analysis mixed with pages that read like a dry Bank of England minute, he blames the three great crises of our times – the financial crash, the pandemic and the climate emergency (he is the UN’s special envoy on climate action and finance) – on twisted economics, an accompanying amoral culture, and degraded institutions whose lack of accountability and integrity accelerate the system’s dysfunction. Thus banks lost control of reality in a fantasy world in which balance sheets could grow exponentially without risk – another market would handle that – indulged by governments and regulators who believed that markets were always right. Then came the Covid pandemic, for which western governments were singularly unready, relying on dubious cost-benefit analysis rather than valuing what we as humans tend to – our lives and looking out for one another. The same mistake is being made with climate change.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Land could be worth more left to nature than when farmed

The Guardian / Phoebe Weston / 8 March 2021

The economic benefits of protecting nature-rich sites such as wetlands and woodlands outweigh the profit that could be made from using the land for resource extraction, according to the largest study yet to look at the value of protecting nature at specific locations.

Scientists analysed 24 sites in six continents and found the asset returns of “ecosystem services” such as carbon storage and flood prevention created by conservation work was, pound for pound, greater than manmade capital created by using the land for activities such as forestry or farming cereals, sugar, tea or cocoa.

The study, which was led by academics at Cambridge University with the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB), suggests further modifying nature for human use could be costing society more than it benefits it, but these “natural capital” costs are often not taken into account by decision-makers.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

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The Transition Framework

What the Transition movement does incredibly well is small-scale experiments which are practical, which resonate with local people, which look as if they’re doable, and that can engage people at a practical and meaningful level. It connects up the big issues and the local issues and shows you that change can happen at a local level.

— Julian Dobson, 21 Stories of Transition
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