Efforts to reduce greenhouse gases should focus on livestock
FRISCO — Focusing on livestock to reduce greenhouse gas emissions could help humanity make some headway in the race to prevent catastrophic climate change, according to an international research team that took a close look at methane and nitrous oxide.
Cutting releases of methane and nitrous oxide, two gases that pound-for-pound trap more heat than CO2, should be considered alongside the challenge of reducing fossil fuel use, the scientists concluded in their analysis, published last week as an opinion commentary in Nature Climate Change, a professional journal.
Report calls for grassroots advocacy to raise awareness of the connection between climate and health
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — Health experts say more botton-up grassroots activism is needed to make it clear that global warming poses a public health risk that’s at least equal to the impact of tobacco.
The international group of researchers published their report last week in the journal PLoS Medicine. The authors included public health experts from institutions in Sweden, Germany and South Africa.
From their report:
“It is becoming increasingly clear that maintaining a sustainable and healthy climate is something that can only be achieved by means of a concerted global effort, including large-scale and small-scale actions, in which the public health community must play an active part … As yet there seems to be a lack of coherence in terms of clear public health messages about climate aimed at populations in general.” Continue reading “Global warming poses huge public health risks”→
‘Science is telling us on a repeated basis … that current mitigation efforts are not sufficient’
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — Two weeks of climate talks in Bonn following up on the last year’s Durban summit didn’t yield much progress in some critical areas, although the delegates did take some steps toward finding a way to extend the Kyoto Protocol and on finding ways to help the most poor and vulnerable countries deal with global warming impacts.
Delegates targeting 2015 for legally binding, enforceable climate deal
By Bob Berwyn
SUMMIT COUNTY — Trying to follow the latest round of climate talks in Bonn, Germany is a reporter’s nightmare, with every press release filled with incredible amounts of bureaucratic jargon or technical information so dense that it’s almost impossible to follow — even for someone well-versed in climate science and policy.
In a way it’s a good thing. The time for grandiose speeches is long past; now’s the time for nitty gritty details. There’s no other way to ensure some sort of meaningful reduction in greenhouse gases.
But if the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change wants to connect with average citizens, it’s going to have to do a much better job of translating some of the information into plain talk to give people an idea of what’s at stake in meetings like the current conference in Bonn.
Conservation groups try to spark grassroots activism
By Jon Harrington
The UNFCCC convention in Cancun has officially started. Mexico President Felipe Calderon has addressed the conference with a stirring speech on how the World must come together to address CO2 emissions and the resulting climate change. He said there needs to be a sense of urgency in these reductions as climate change is happening now with devastating effects for Mexico and other countries around the globe.
President Calderón cited last year’s hurricane in Mexico, this year’s floods in Pakistan and fires in Russia as examples of increasing incidences of natural disasters brought about by climate change and already affecting the poorest and most vulnerable.
Calling on negotiators in Cancún to make progress in the interest of their children and grandchildren, he said that the “eyes of the world” were focused on the meeting.
Editor’s note: Jon Harrington, renewable energy advocate and owner of Silverthorne’s Alpine Earth Center, is traveling to Cancun this week and will be offering his perspectives on the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Harrington will post updates regularly at Summit Voice on the proceedings at COP16.
“There are 194 nations that have signed the Kyoto Accord,” Harrington said. “With the U.S. not being one of them, I will be traveling to Cancun this week to understand what the world is doing to combat climate change, and why the U.S. is on the sidelines.”