The Year the Dam of Denial Breaks – Ready for the Flood?

2015 as the great turning point in climate denial? Wilding looks at 6 key indicators for why 2015 just may be a significant tipping point. But as he notes, system change is messy, chaotic, confusing and hard to see when you’re in the middle of it

Paul Gilding

This is the year the “dam of denial” will break and the momentum for climate action will become an unstoppable flood. It will be messy, confusing and endlessly debated but with historical hindsight, 2015 will be the year. The year the world turned, primarily because the market woke up to the economic threat posed by climate change and the economic opportunity in the inevitable decline of fossil fuels. That shift will in turn unlock government policy and public opinion because the previous resistance to action argued on economic grounds, will reverse to favour action on economic grounds.

View original post 2,204 more words

Inside Paul Hawken’s audacious plan to ‘drawdown’ climate change | GreenBiz

When the activist Bill McKibben wrote the seminal article, “Global Warming’s Terrifying New Math,” in Rolling Stone in 2012, Hawken asked, “Why aren’t we doing the math on the solutions? Somebody should come up with a list and see what it requires so you get to drawdown.”

The idea of “drawdown” — actually reducing greenhouse gas concentrations so that global temperatures drop — hasn’t been part of the conversation, at least among the United Nations crowd, climate activists or cleantech companies. Most focus on the seemingly pragmatic goal of stabilizing greenhouse gases at some level, expressed in parts per million, or ppm, that would be tolerable — or at least not catastrophic, from economic, environmental and social perspectives.

via Inside Paul Hawken’s audacious plan to ‘drawdown’ climate change | GreenBiz.

Security Researcher Christopher Soghoian on How to Use a Cellphone Without Being Spied On | Democracy Now!

o, again, the voice and text message services provided by your wireless carrier, if you’re just sending a text message through your phone or making a telephone call through your phone, those calls can be intercepted by your own government, by police and intelligence agencies. They can be intercepted by foreign governments who are operating domestically. They can be intercepted by sophisticated criminals and by hackers and by stalkers. You should not expect that those kinds of communications services can deliver real security.

On the other hand, there are now a number of apps and Internet-based services that you can run on your smartphone that will give you much, much more secure communications. So, Apple has built iMessage into its iPhone product for several years. If you have an iPhone and you’re sending a text message to someone else who has an iPhone, this is used by default. Those messages are encrypted in a strong way. They’re sent via Apple’s system, and it’s very, very difficult for governments to intercept those. If you’re using WhatsApp, which is a service now owned by Facebook and used by hundreds of millions of people around the world, if you’re using WhatsApp on Android, it’s encrypted, again, in a very strong way. And if you have an Android or iPhone, you can download third-party apps, the best of which are called Signal for iOS and TextSecure, T-E-X-T Secure, from Android. These are best-of-breed free applications made by top security researchers, and actually subsidized by the State Department and by the U.S. taxpayer. You can download these tools today. You can make encrypted telephone calls. You can send encrypted text messages. You can really up your game and protect your communications.

To be clear, if you are a target of a law enforcement or intelligence agency and they really care about you, they can hack into your phone, and these tools won’t stop that. But you can make it much more difficult. You can make it so that they have to work really hard.

via Security Researcher Christopher Soghoian on How to Use a Cellphone Without Being Spied On | Democracy Now!.

Caribou Pay the Price. Wolves Get the Blame. Kochs Get the $$.

Speechless

Climate Denial Crock of the Week

Common Dreams:

Alberta’s attempt to boost caribou numbers by killing wolves is an inhumane approach that fails to target the root of the problem—the extractivist industries—says a group scientists.

Explaining how the wolves came to be seen as the problem, Kaleigh Rogers writes at Vice:

See, roads and industrial development built to take advantage of Alberta’s rich natural resources has impacted the woodland habitat, in part allowing wolves to more easily gain access to the caribou herds. While the wolves aren’t to blame, they have been contributing to the diminishing caribou population and nearly wiped them out in some areas, so the government decided to introduce a systematic wolf cull to address the immediate problem.

Source: Pembina Institute

Controversy erupted in November following the publication of an analysis in the Canadian Journal of Zoology, which, as CBC Newsreported at the time, assessed

the effect of a seven-year…

View original post 312 more words

Muslim Community Rejects Abbott Government’s Demonisation and Condemns Moves to Silence Legitimate Critique | Muslims In Australia Since the 1600s

Joint Statement: Muslim Community Rejects Abbott Government’s Demonisation and Condemns Moves to Silence Legitimate Critique

This joint Muslim community statement expresses our position with respect to the Abbott Government’s ongoing demonisation of Muslims in Australia, their organisations, their leaders and their values.

We – the undersigned Sheikhs, advocates, community leaders, community organisations and student bodies of the Muslim community – make the following points in this regard:

via Muslim Community Rejects Abbott Government’s Demonisation and Condemns Moves to Silence Legitimate Critique | Muslims In Australia Since the 1600s.

Meet the Australian Company Suing El Salvador for the Right to Poison Its Water – FPIF

An obscure tribunal housed at the World Bank in Washington, D.C. will soon decide the fate of millions of people.

At issue is whether a government should be punished for refusing to let a foreign mining company operate because it wants to protect its main source of water.

The case pits El Salvador’s government against a Canadian gold-mining company that recently became part of a larger Australian-based corporation. When OceanaGold bought Pacific Rim last year, it identified the Salvadoran mining prospects as a key asset, even though gold prices have sunk by more than a third from their 2011 high of more than $1,900 an ounce.

The case’s implications are chilling. If the company wins, this small country will have to either let the company mine or pay hundreds of millions of dollars.

This summer, we returned to northern El Salvador. That’s where the Pacific Rim mining company started to dig its exploration wells about a decade ago.

via Meet the Company Suing El Salvador for the Right to Poison Its Water – FPIF.

Book reviews: Corruption in India, China’s hunt for resources, public participation in the EU

The GOVERNANCE blog

In the current issue of Governance, Sean Yiath reviews The Hungry Dragon: How China’s Resources Quest is Reshaping the World, by Sigfrido Burgos Cáceres and Sophal Ear.    The book “exposes the leverage China holds over source countries and reveals the cleavages in domestic and international relations among the key players.”  Free access to the review.

Alvin Almendrala Camba reviews Participatory Governance in the European Union by Karl-Oskar Lindgren and Thomas Persson.  “Despite its limitations, this is a fresh and timely contribution to the governance literature.”  Free access to the review.

And Nafis Hasan of Azim Premji University reviews Corruption and Reform in India by Jennifer Bussell.   The book is a “bold attempt to identify the reasons for the difference in quality” of computerized service centers that were supposed to reduce corruption in Indian state governments.  Free access to the review.

View original post

“Back to the Māori Future” – Anake Goodall

“To date Māori organisations have not developed barter economies or crowdsourced funding vehicles, or established their own credit unions. Nor have they adopted localised food production and distribution systems, or created communal housing developments in urban areas, community-owned renewable electricity generation, or urban gardens.

These community-based solutions succeed on a platform of local community connectedness and relationships and reciprocity and active generosity; all strong characteristics of Māori society. It is therefore surprising that these myriad network-based mechanisms, which are being aggressively adopted and adapted everywhere from Pakistan to New York City, have been so little explored by Māori collectives. And especially so given their potential to reduce the burdens of poverty and inequality that are borne so disproportionately by Māori.”

anakegoodall

This text is an essay included in “Back to the Māori Future” in Inequality: A New Zealand Crisis, Max Rashbrooke (ed.), Wellington, Bridget Williams Books, June 2013.

Better by Design: back to the Māori future?
Anake Goodall

At the creation

It is interesting to speculate on the vision that the Māori leadership of the nineteenth century had in mind as they signed the Treaty of Waitangi, and what they may have envisaged a co-created Aotearoa New Zealand – and their role in that nation-building exercise – would look like.

A genuine blending of the Māori worldview, with its dynamic, community-grounded customs and values held in a frame of reciprocal responsibility to each other and the natural world, and the equally dynamic Western model, with its technologies and capital market economy and systems of management, would have been a heady mix indeed.

We do enjoy, fortunately, a unique Aotearoa New Zealand…

View original post 2,290 more words