climate change

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not convenient right now?

Submitted by sproutingforth on Mon, 2007-01-22 09:30

We finally had the time to go and catch the tail end of the run of ‘an inconvenient truth’ at the V&A Waterfront, after having blogged about it and encouraged everyone else to go and see the film, it felt about time!

I’ve pondered on the title of the film for quite a while, not actively, but have been aware at how clever it is – dealing directly with most peoples’ reaction to global warming, particularly politicians who don’t really want to deal with it right now - it isn’t altogether convenient to realise that changes have to be made, that the earth and all who live on her, together, are going to have to deal with a crisis – gets in the way of the other important stuff - how annoying!

I’d expected the documentary-style film to take a ‘shock’ angle; to make me frightened, to ‘scare’ me into action. But in fact, the script writers have been fantastically clever about how they’ve put together a film that motivates and excites you to get out there and do something about what could seem daunting, and even downright debilitating, in the face of such irrefutable evidence.

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greening it up – fri 19 jan 07

Submitted by sproutingforth on Fri, 2007-01-19 10:57

Sub-Saharan Africa – facing the worst of global warming. Swiss scientists have produced a map showing those parts of the Earth that will face the worst climate change problems. Amazon and sub-Saharan Africa and the polar regions will be the hardest hit, whilst Europe, the US and Australia will be affected less. [News.scotsman]

The UN calls for a global summit on climate change to urge heads of state and government to start taking responsibility as climate change affects energy, energy security, economic issues and development issues. [United press]

US clamps down on climate bloggers The US Senate is apparently intent on imposing criminal charges, perhaps even jail time, on political bloggers with a readership of over 500 who ‘…incite grassroots action…’. Whoops! [Christopher Haase’s blog]

doomsday clock moves to 5 minutes before midnight

Submitted by turbosprout on Thu, 2007-01-18 13:59

Doomsday clock adjusted two minutes closer to midnight as deteriorating global situation sited on nuclear weapons and a new factor: Climate Change!

doomsday clock: pic: bulletin of atomic scientistsdoomsday clock: pic: bulletin of atomic scientistsThe doomsday clock is a symbolic clock face that represents the time left before destruction of the planet by nuclear explosion. It was conceived in 1947 by the Board of Directors of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, a non-technical magazine founded by nuclear physicists after the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

The number of minutes before midnight, an arbitrary measure of the degree of nuclear threat, is updated periodically but has only been changed 17 times during the history of the clock. It was previously set to seven minutes before midnight in Feb 2002 after the events of 9/11.

The decision to adjust the clock was made in consultation with the Bulletin's Board of Sponsors, which includes 18 Nobel Laureates and reflects the failure to solve problems posed by nuclear weapons and takes into account Iran's nuclear ambitions and recent nuclear weapons tests by North Korea.

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greening it up – mon 15 jan 07

Submitted by sproutingforth on Mon, 2007-01-15 09:56


A coalition of 45 African states, including SA, has claimed their right to nuclear energy and undertaken to ‘promote the safe and accountable use of nuclear energy’. [newscientist] In the wake of pressure to control greenhouse gas emissions, this is regarded as a cleaner source of energy. James Lovelock advocates that this is the only green solution, but the jury is out amongst greenies and there are concerns about Eskom’s pending pebble-bed station. [living on earth]

Obasanjo calls for action on climate change and has asked for international assistance to help Africa deal with the devastation. His concerns include the need for urgent action to prevent Lake Chad from drying up. [IOL]

climate change roundup

Submitted by turbosprout on Mon, 2006-12-18 13:21

With new stories on climate change appearing everyday, herewith a quick summary of some of the recent interesting ones:

"When you come into the possession of truth that has deep implications to the future, and then you find the courage to express it and make a commitment to becoming involved in an effort to disenthrall our country and the world from this prison of illusions that has paralyzed us and prevented us from taking appropriate action, you will find that the truth will move obstacles from your path."

Thus spake Al Gore, borrowing from Ghandi's "truth force" concept, at a recent American Geophysical Union where he delivered a speech entitled "Climate Change: The Role of Science and the Media in Policy Making." He also committed to becoming a member of the 45 000 scientist strong non-profit organisation. [LiveScience]

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carbon neutral sport

Submitted by turbosprout on Fri, 2006-12-15 16:28

Those that attended the FIFA World Cup 2006 in Germany can sleep better at night knowing the extra carbon dioxide generated because of the event will be offset against investment in emission reducing projects in good ole S of A.

One project is to replace a coal fired boiler used by the SA's largest citrus processor - African Realty Trust.

The second project includes capturing methane emissions from a waste water treatment plant in the Johannesburg area and using the biogas to generate clean electricity.

I thought this showed great leadership by FIFA and as the largest global sporting event they have now set the standard for other sporting bodies to follow. []

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being more green – 6 easy tips to reduce your carbon footprint

Submitted by sproutingforth on Tue, 2006-12-12 11:02

copyright: ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ the world is caught up with reducing their carbon footprint – if you haven’t seen Al Gore’s movie, it’s showing at cinema nouveau - and since SA has one of the highest greenhouse gas emissions in Africa [greening it up last thurs] we thought a few green tips would go a long way to helping us reduce them:

1. Stop using your car so much – this is a biggie in a country that seems to need to measure its worth by its car! Last year alone, more than 60 000 new cars were bought in SA [M&G] – this not only translates as more carbon emissions but also a higher death toll on the roads!

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co2 burial scheme

Submitted by turbosprout on Tue, 2006-11-21 10:33

Iccsaccsat's not a new funeral plan, but a potential way to limit the carbon dioxide emissions that contribute to global warming: bury the problem.

The London Convention governing burial of material in the sea was amended on 2 November, allowing carbon storage in sub-seabed geological formations. Twenty-nine countries ratified it, including the UK, China and Australia.

There are around 37 multinational companies, represented by the Carbon Capture & Storage Association in London (CCSA), that are no doubt delighted by the news and the potential business that co2 burial schemes will generate. There are seven prototype schemes planned in the UK alone and this would apparently cut British CO2 emissions by a quarter, far faster than other options.

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co2 used to fuel biofuel

Submitted by turbosprout on Mon, 2006-11-13 16:53

Perhaps the merging of coke and eskom is not so far-fetched after all.

It turns out there is some use for carbon dioxide, other than to heat up the planet: have algae turn it into a clean fuel!

The state of New York together with power producer NRG Energy and GreenFuel Technologies are testing CO2 recycling technology at (Eskom, take note) a coal-fired power plant in Dunkirk, NY.

The project uses a bio-reactor in which a single-celled algae takes up C02 in the presence of light. The algae can then be converted into ethanol or biodiesel.

This is one website someone at Eskom should be looking at:

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if eskom merged with coca cola then...

Submitted by turbosprout on Mon, 2006-11-13 13:30

...they would not only be able to produce a bona-fide "energy drink" but might also solve a couple of problems that both companies face.

escokeescokeI read with amusement in the Sunday Times yesterday that Coca-Cola SA has a shortage of carbon dioxide and that ABI (Amalgamated Beverage Industry), the countries largest bottler will have to import Coke, Fanta and Sprite from abroad to meet demand for the festive season.

Apparantly Afrox, the main supplier, was battling to obtain CO2 from Sasol and PetroSA which is produced as a by-product of petrol production.

Enter Eskom, a company well known for it's production of dirty coal-derived energy during which tons of CO2 are emitted daily. I found it ironic that while one industry is spewing an abundance of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere (and contributing to global warming) that there could be a shortage of the stuff in another industry.

So I guess it will only be a matter of time before Eskom will be in talks with Coke. I'm sure there would be great synergy between these two industrial giants. And just think of the coup the advertising exec's would create...

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