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Climate action: Only the most radical approach will work

 

 

By Dave Holmes

 

October 11, 2019 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — The current climate crisis — global warming — is the greatest threat ever faced by humanity. The survival of the human race is at stake. The reality of the heating of the planet can’t rationally be denied.

 

CO2 emissions continue to rise. The atmospheric concentration of CO2 is now north of 410 ppm. This is the highest level in 800,000 years. The planet is clearly getting hotter. There are now more extreme weather events — more devastating floods, more debilitating droughts, more catastrophic hurricanes and tornadoes, more searing heatwaves, more destructive storm water surges in coastal areas. We can expect to cross some key tipping points very soon, ushering in a world very different to anything we have ever known.

 

The burden of these events falls most heavily on poor people and especially on Third World countries where the infrastructure is much weaker.

 

What is energy denial?

 

 

By Don Fitz

 

September 22, 2019 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — The fiftieth anniversary of the first Earth Day of 1970 will be in 2020.  As environmentalism has gone mainstream during that half a century, it has forgotten its early focus and shifted toward green capitalism.  Nowhere is this more apparent than abandonment of the slogan popular during the early Earth Days: “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.”

 

Imperialism in the Anthropocene

 

 

By John Bellamy Foster, Hannah Holleman and Brett Clark

 

September 7, 2019 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Monthly Review — On May 21, 2019, the Anthropocene Working Group, established by the Subcommision on Quaternary Stratigraphy of the International Commission on Stratigraphy, voted by more than the necessary 60 percent to recognize the existence of the Anthropocene epoch in geological time, beginning around 1950. It defined this new “chronostratigraphic” epoch as “the period of Earth’s history during which humans have a decisive influence on the state, dynamics, and future of the Earth System.” Anthropogenic change, beginning in the mid–twentieth century, was designated as the principal force in the accelerated evolution of the entire Earth System. The Anthropocene Working Group will proceed next to the designation of a specific “golden spike,” or stratigraphic location, standing for the Anthropocene in the geological record, with the aim of getting the new epoch officially adopted by the International Commission on Stratigraphy in the next several years.[1]

 

Gee Whiz! Communism is sure gonna be keen!

 

 

Aaron Bastani
FULLY AUTOMATED LUXURY COMMUNISM
Verso, 2019

 

Reviewed by Ian Angus

 

July 7, 2019 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Climate & Capitalism — When I was ten years old, I read and re-read a stack of decades-old Modern Mechanix magazines that I found in my grandfather’s basement. Throughout the Great Depression, MM regaled its readers with breathless accounts of technological marvels that were going to change the world, very soon.

 

Issue after issue promised the kind of things that were later parodied in The Jetsons TV show — flying cars, air conditioned cities, weather control, robots and the like.

 

An open letter to Extinction Rebellion

 

 

 

 

This letter was collaboratively written with dozens of aligned groups. As the weeks of action called by Extinction Rebellion were coming to an end, our groups came together to reflect on the narrative, strategies, tactics and demands of a reinvigorated climate movement in the UK. In this letter we articulate a foundational set of principles and demands that are rooted in justice and which we feel are crucial for the whole movement to consider as we continue constructing a response to the ‘climate emergency’.

 

Dear Extinction Rebellion,

 

The emergence of a mass movement like Extinction Rebellion (XR) is an encouraging sign that we have reached a moment of opportunity in which there is both a collective consciousness of the immense danger ahead of us and a collective will to fight it. A critical mass agrees with the open letter launching XR when it states “If we continue on our current path, the future for our species is bleak.”

 

How indigenous genocide contributed to climate change

 

 

By Gerardo Honty

 

May 7, 2019 
— Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Alainet — Those who deny climate change caused by mankind tend to cite the so-called “Little Ice Age” as one of their arguments to defend the hypothesis of the natural origin of climate changes. The Little Ice Age, as it is known, to distinguish it from the great ice ages, covers a period from 1350 to 1850 approximately, when there was a significant lowering of the global average temperature with respect to the five previous centuries. The planet was emerging from a period known as the “Medieval Climate Optimum” and both processes have led the so-called “sceptics” or “deniers” to deduce from this, among other factors, the natural origin of present climate change. The warming that we are witnessing today, they deduce, comes from a new cycle of solar activity and not from human activity.

 

A Green New Deal must deliver global justice

 

 

By Asad Rehman

 

May 5, 2019
— Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Red Pepper —  For too long the severity and scale of the climate crisis has been deliberately understated, but October’s release of the IPCC’s Special Report on the Global Warming of 1.5°c finally sent shockwaves into the populations of rich countries. The urgent need for action was clear with the world now in ‘decade zero’, when every decision taken in the coming years will determine the extent to which the critical 1.5°c guardrail is breached triggering run away climate change. Despite these warnings the UN estimates that current emission targets will put the world on a trajectory of at least 3.4°c and possibly up to 7°c warming.

 

Rethinking some dominant approaches to climate change

 

 

By Richard Fidler

 

March 26 2019 
— Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Life on the Left Blog — Climate change is the most visible, most threatening expression of a larger, planetary ecological crisis, the result of an economic system (capitalism) with an inherent growth and profit dynamic which ensures that the exploitation of natural resources (both renewable and non-renewable) exceeds the carrying capacity of nature. You have read the almost-daily scientific reports, each more alarming than the ones before, on the scope of the crisis. I won’t belabour the point.

 

Our approach must be informed by, and congruent with, the challenge that crisis poses to the way society must be organized if we are to halt and reverse the ecological catastrophe toward which we are now hurtling.

 

The politics of hurricanes: how climate catastrophe victimises the poor

 

 

By Phil Hearse

 

September 17, 2018 
— Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — Climate change catastrophe is, as this article is written, facing hundreds of thousands on the eastern seaboard of the United States and on the Philippines island of Luzon, as Hurricane Florence and Typhoon Mangkhut make landfall simultaneously. Mangkhut also threatens Hong Kong, South China and maybe Vietnam.

 

In the United States, Donald Trump has promised all necessary aid to the affected states – North and South Carolina and Virginia in particular. But the recent hurricane history of the United States is one of neglect and indifference towards poor and non-white populations – often the same people – not least by the Trump administration towards the people of Puerto Rico.

 

Is nuclear power a solution to the climate crisis?

 

 

By Don Fitz

 

September 1, 2018 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — Faith that environmental catastrophe can best be avoided by technological gadgetry rather than a change in social relationships received a big shot in the arm with the May 2018 publication of Energy: A Human History by prolific author Richard Rhodes. After completing 18 of his 20 chapters, Rhodes begins his exploration of nuclear power by comparing Rachel Carson, Ralph Nader, and Helen Caldicott to anti-humanists such as Thomas Malthus, Paul Ehrlich and followers of Adolf Hitler.

 

This bizarre connection is based on the writings of one obscure author who predated Carson with a foreboding of destruction caused by the over-reproduction of “undesirable people.”Rhodes claims that the environmental movement unknowingly brought anti-humanist ideology into its visions of a simpler world. By advocating a society less dependent on complex technology, environmentalists are supposedly condemning untold millions of impoverished humans to disease and starvation.

 

Climate change in the Anthropocene: An unstoppable drive to Hothouse Earth?

 

 

By Ian Angus

 

August 19, 2018 
— Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Climate & Capitalism — Scientific papers do not often make front-page news, but a recent one certainly has.

 

On August 6, the British Guardian declared that a “Domino-effect of climate events could move Earth into a ‘hothouse’ state.” The New York Times warned of a “World at risk of heading towards irreversible ‘hothouse’ state.” Sky News said that “Earth is 1°C away from hothouse state that threatens the future of humanity.”

 

The basis for those excited headlines was an article with the distinctly unexciting title “Trajectories of the Earth System in the Anthropocene,” published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.[1] Normally, PNAS articles can only be read by those who pay high subscription fees, but interest in this one ran so high that after one day the publisher removed the paywall, making it accessible to all.

 

Project Life: Cuba’s action plan prepares for climate change

 

 

“An important biological species is facing the risk of extinction given the rapid 
and progressive elimination of its natural conditions for life: humanity” 
—Fidel Castro Ruz (Earth Summit, Río de Janeiro, June 12, 1992)

 

By Yisell Rodríguez Milán and Danae González Del Toro

 

April 30, 2018 
— Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Climate & Capitalism, an earlier translation first appeared at Granma  — What is to be done about high temperatures, rising sea levels, and increasingly powerful hurricanes? What can we do to be less vulnerable to climate change? Preliminary observations by groups of specialists in the country indicate that sea level has increased on the island an average of 6.77 centimeters since 1966, a process that has accelerated during the last five years. Since the middle of the last century, the average annual temperature has risen 0.9 degrees Celsius, and the coastline is today more fragile than ever. This reality calls for action, and Cuba is acting on the premise of preparing, to avoid lamenting later.

 

Jobs and industry in the Hunter Valley: Context for a conversation about a Just Transition away from coal

 

 

 

By Steve Phillips

 

May 5, 2017 –– Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal –– The Hunter Valley is famously, or infamously, one of the most coal-mining-dominated regions in the world. We have one of the highest concentrations of mines on the planet, and we host its biggest export coal facility. Many will tell you that the Hunter has always been a coal-mining region, and it's true. But in the past it played a lesser role, and only in recent years has mining come to dominate the physical, social, and economic landscape of the Hunter Valley.

 

Will science go rogue against Donald Trump?

 

 

 

By Chris Williams

 

"Please let us remember that to investigate the constitution of the universe is one of the greatest and noblest problems in nature, and it becomes still grander when directed toward another discovery."

 

February 22, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Socialist Worker with the author's permission — IN THE age of Trump, the person writing those words has much to teach us about the impending scientific struggles of our own time.

 

Facebook server farm powered by ‘clean energy’ will increase Denmark's greenhouse emissions

 

 
By Stan Cox and Paul Cox
 
February 8, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — Last month, social-media giant Facebook announced plans to build a new data center near Odense, Denmark. The expansion of server capacity was needed, the company said, to support "richer content" such as live-streaming and virtual reality.

Trump and climate catastrophe

 

 

By John Bellamy Foster

 

This very expensive GLOBAL WARMING bullshit has got to stop.
Our planet is freezing, record low temps, and our GW scientists are stuck in ice.

Donald Trump, January 2, 2014[1]

February 5, 2017 Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Monthly Review — The alarm bells are ringing. The climate-change denialism of the Trump administration, coupled with its goal of maximizing fossil-fuel extraction and consumption at all costs, constitutes, in the words of Noam Chomsky, “almost a death knell for the human species.” As noted climatologist Michael E. Mann has declared, “I fear that this may be game over for the climate.”[2]

Protecting business as usual: Another attack on Anthropocene science

 

 

By Ian Angus

 
January 26, 2017 –– Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Climate & Capitalism –– About 11,700 years ago, the last ice age of the Pleistocene ended and a new time of relative warmth and climate stability began, an epoch that geologists call the Holocene. Now, a large body of scientific evidence shows that “the Earth has been pushed out of the Holocene Epoch by human activities.”[1] A new and unprecedented time of sweeping global change, the Anthropocene, is now underway.

 

A Kurdish response to climate change

 

 

By Anna Lau, Erdelan Baran, and Melanie Sirinathsingh

 

November 23, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Open Democracy — For 4000 years since the breakdown of the Akkadian Empire in Mesopotamia, almost every major societal collapse has featured five trends: spiralling migration, state collapse, food shortages, epidemic disease and climate change.[1] What makes the present era distinct is that whilst previous collapses have been geographically contained, the globalisation of carbon-intensive industry since the 1800s and particularly over the last four decades means that the relationship between cause and effect has been obscured. Many of the people worst impacted by human-caused climate change today are also the least responsible for it. The Climate Stories project believes that averting further damage and building a different future means being led by those who are the first to hear the earth rise up in protest, have considered the causes and are innovating solutions. In this spirit, this article documents reflections from a series of conversations with members of the Kurdish movement on climate change.

 

Exploring the roots of a 21st century ‘climate crisis’

 

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