March, 2023

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Big Oil’s Denial and Delay Is Endangering Our Future

Union of Concerned Scientists

In a few days, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will release its latest synthesis report that provides a comprehensive assessment of the current state of scientific knowledge on climate change, including its causes, impacts, and potential solutions. These reports reflect how the world has responded, or failed to respond, to climate change.

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For Your Phone and EV, a Cobalt Supply Chain to a Hell on Earth

Yale E360

The race for high-tech metals has sparked a cobalt boom in the Democratic Republic of the Congo that has come at a steep human cost. In an e360 interview, author Siddharth Kara talks about the horrific conditions in the mines that are putting thousands of workers at risk.

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Wasted Food: Rethinking Our Perceptions and Practices

Environment + Energy Leader

In 2022, Feeding America salvaged 3.6 billion pounds of groceries to provide sustenance to families experiencing food insecurity. The post Wasted Food: Rethinking Our Perceptions and Practices appeared first on Environment + Energy Leader.

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Some new CMIP6 MSU comparisons

Real Climate

We add some of the CMIP6 models to the updateable MSU comparisons. After my annual update , I was pointed to some MSU-related diagnostics for many of the CMIP6 models (24 of them at least) from Po-Chedley et al. (2022) courtesy of Ben Santer. These are slightly different to what we have shown for CMIP5 in that the diagnostic is the tropical corrected-TMT (following Fu et al., 2004 ) which is a better representation of the mid-troposphere than the classic TMT diagnostic through an adjustment usin

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The Key to Sustainable Energy Optimization: A Data-Driven Approach for Manufacturing

Speaker: Kevin Kai Wong, President of Emergent Energy Solutions

In today's industrial landscape, the pursuit of sustainable energy optimization and decarbonization has become paramount. ♻️ Manufacturing corporations across the U.S. are facing the urgent need to align with decarbonization goals while enhancing efficiency and productivity. Unfortunately, the lack of comprehensive energy data poses a significant challenge for manufacturing managers striving to meet their targets. 📊 Join us for a practical webinar hosted by Kevin Kai Wong of Emergent Ene

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Great Lakes Take Global Stage

Circle of Blue

UN Water Conference highlights risks and opportunities for the Great Lakes region. The UN Water Conference was held March 22-24, 2023, in New York City. Photo © J. Carl Ganter/Circle of Blue By Brett Walton, Circle of Blue – March 28, 2023 For three days last week the world came together at the United Nations in New York City to discuss ways to place water at the center of decision-making.

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The IPCC Should Just Say 1.5 C is Dead

Legal Planet

IPCC Chair Hoesung Lee called the report ” a fundamental policy document for shaping climate action in the remainder of this pivotal decade.” Credit: IPCC/Antoine Tardy “There is a rapidly closing window of opportunity to secure a livable and sustainable future for all,” according to the IPCC’s AR6 Synthesis Report. That phrase spoke to the parent in me, though maybe not for the sentimental reason you might think.

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How Indigenous People Are Restoring Brazil’s Atlantic Forest

Yale E360

The Guarani Mbya people are working to restore the once-vast Atlantic Forest, which has been largely lost to development. Gaining official tenure of their lands, they hope, will boost their efforts, which range from planting native trees to reintroducing pollinators.

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Buildings Belong at the Heart of Climate Action

Environment + Energy Leader

We spend 90% of our lives indoors, and when it comes to decarbonization, buildings represent the greatest economic heft, emotional weight, and environmental lift of any sector. The post Buildings Belong at the Heart of Climate Action appeared first on Environment + Energy Leader.

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The ICJ’s Advisory Opinion on Climate Change: What Happens Now?

Law Columbia

Photo by Mathias Reding on Unsplash Climate change litigation has finally reached the world’s highest court. On March 29, 2023, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) adopted a resolution requesting an advisory opinion from the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on the obligations of States with respect to climate change. The UNGA adopted resolution (A/77/L.58) by consensus.

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UN Water Conference Marked by Enthusiasm, Uncertainty

Circle of Blue

Conference produces more than 700 commitments for water. The UN Water Conference was held March 22-24, 2023, in New York City. Photo © J. Carl Ganter/Circle of Blue By Brett Walton, Circle of Blue – March 31, 2023 What, in the end, did all the buzz accomplish? To draw attention to ambitious global goals for water, sanitation, and ecosystems, the United Nations brought together people passionate about water for three days of panel discussions, speeches, commitments to action, and networking.

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Implementing D.E.J.I. Strategies in Energy, Environment, and Transportation

Speaker: Antoine M. Thompson, Executive Director of the Greater Washington Region Clean Cities Coalition

Diversity, Equity, Justice, and Inclusion (DEJI) policies, programs, and initiatives are critically important as we move forward with public and private sector climate and sustainability goals and plans. Underserved and socially, economically, and racially disadvantaged communities bear the burden of pollution, higher energy costs, limited resources, and limited investments in the clean energy and transportation sectors.

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It's now or never – we need to achieve a sustainable human population

New Scientist

To address our overconsumption of resources, we must work to achieve a sustainable population by addressing gender inequality, improving education and tackling poverty, says Chris Packham

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Rising Seas, Rising Stakes: The Case for an International Court of Justice Advisory Opinion 

Union of Concerned Scientists

Heat-trapping emissions are continuing to rise while the gap between what is needed to keep Paris Agreement goals in reach and adapt to ongoing climate impacts is ever-widening. This dire state of affairs is just one of the reasons why the Republic of Vanuatu and more than 100 other nations have drafted a resolution asking the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to issue an advisory opinion on climate change.

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The East Coast Whale Die-Offs: Unraveling the Causes

Yale E360

Activists are blaming a recent spate of humpback strandings off New York and New Jersey on seismic exploration by offshore wind companies. But scientists say the deaths are not unusual and are likely due to increased ship traffic and entanglements with fishing gear.

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Canada Commits Nearly $306M to Enhance Great Lakes Water Quality

Environment + Energy Leader

"The Great Lakes are a source of drinking water for 40 million people, and this shared resource needs to be protected," Trudeau said. The post Canada Commits Nearly $306M to Enhance Great Lakes Water Quality appeared first on Environment + Energy Leader.

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Shaping a Resilient Future: Climate Impact on Vulnerable Populations

Speaker: Laurie Schoeman Director, Climate & Sustainability, Capital

As households and communities across the nation face challenges such as hurricanes, wildfires, drought, extreme heat and cold, and thawing permafrost and flooding, we are increasingly searching for ways to mitigate and prevent climate impacts. During this event, national climate and housing expert Laurie Schoeman will discuss topics including: The two paths for climate action: decarbonization and adaptation.

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More Sustainable (and Beautiful) Alternatives to a Grass Lawn

NRDC

Manicured turf grass lawns cover up to 50 million acres of land in America. But a new, no-mow movement is challenging this conformity—and helping the environment.

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UN Conference on Water Aims to Rally Support for Ambitious Goals

Circle of Blue

Global water challenges headline gathering in New York City this week. Ujang delivers water to customers in the poor neighborhoods of North Jakarta. His cart is a crucial supply line to communities beset by water insecurity. © J. Carl Ganter / Circle of Blue By Brett Walton, Circle of Blue – March 20, 2023 The last time the United Nations hosted a conference dedicated to global water supply and sanitation the world looked vastly different.

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Botox injections in forehead alter brain activity linked to emotions

New Scientist

Brain scans show that people who have had Botox injections have altered brain activity when they look at happy and angry faces, possibly because the paralysis of muscles means they can’t mimic the expressions they see

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Can International Law Save the Planet from Climate Change?

Union of Concerned Scientists

For the first time, the International Court of Justice (ICJ)—the world’s highest court—may be ruling on climate change. Ranging from human rights violations to border disputes, conflicts among nations are often complex and contentious. When diplomacy needs backup, countries turn to resolve their disputes at the ICJ, the United Nations’ principal judicial organ, to set the tone for international law.

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Sustainability at Retail

Sustainability impacts every nation, company, and person around the world. So much so that, in 2015, the United Nations (UN) issued a call for action by all countries to work toward sustainable development. In response to this and as part of a global Sustainability at Retail initiative, Shop! worked collaboratively with its global affiliates to address these critical issues in this white paper.

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Unheralded Environmentalist: Jimmy Carter’s Green Legacy

Yale E360

With the former president now in hospice care, Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer Kai Bird looks back on Jimmy Carter’s environmental record in the White House — from his sweeping protection of Alaska’s wild lands to his efforts to push the nation toward renewable energy.

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Greenpeace Criticizes Germany and EU’s Agreement on Combustion Engines

Environment + Energy Leader

EU diplomats are voting Monday to formally approve a law aimed at phasing out fossil fuels by 2035. Energy managers are expected to sign off on the law during Tuesday's meeting in Brussels. The post Greenpeace Criticizes Germany and EU’s Agreement on Combustion Engines appeared first on Environment + Energy Leader.

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Vaccine Makers Are Preparing for Bird Flu

Scientific American

Although most experts say bird flu is not an immediate threat to humans, efforts are underway to produce vaccines for H5N1 or another potential pandemic virus

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Tax Incentives Find New Purpose for Conserving Water in American West

Circle of Blue

Conservation easements protect the region’s depleted groundwater. Dust and cows in the fall in the San Luis Valley. Photo courtesy of Flickr/Creative Commons user Michael Rael By Brett Walton, Circle of Blue – March 9, 2023 The San Luis Valley, a high desert farming region in southern Colorado, is a land of daunting natural constraints, especially its scarce water reserves.

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The UK's official swimming rivers are too polluted to swim in

New Scientist

Just two rivers in the UK are designated as "bathing waters", and both are currently rated in poor health. With more rivers set to become bathing waters, will they actually be clean enough to use?

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The Agriculture Resilience Act Is a Win for Sustainable Nutrition Science 

Union of Concerned Scientists

The Agriculture Resilience Act (ARA) of 2023 was re-introduced in Congress today. The ARA is comprehensive, science-based legislation that covers many topics related to environmental and climate concerns in agriculture, including conservation on both agricultural and pasture land, renewable energy, and food loss and waste. The ARA is bold legislation that equips farmers with funding for climate resilience, including a much-needed focus on soil health.

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As Enforcement Lags, Toxic Coal Ash Keeps Polluting U.S. Water

Yale E360

Despite rules requiring remediation, only a few of the nearly 300 U.S. power plants storing toxic ash — the residue of burning coal — have started cleanups or have plans to do so. Many of these sites are polluting groundwater, putting the drinking water for millions at risk.

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The Energy Transition: Buildings are Key in 2023

Environment + Energy Leader

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), the current built environment is responsible for nearly 30% of global energy consumption and over 90% of buildings in the US are under 50,000 square feet. The post The Energy Transition: Buildings are Key in 2023 appeared first on Environment + Energy Leader.

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Bees follow linear landmarks to find their way home, just like the first pilots

Frontiers

By Mischa Dijkstra, Frontiers science writer Scientists have shown that honeybees retain a memory of the dominant linear landscape elements in their home area like channels, roads, and boundaries. When transported to an unfamiliar area, they seek out local elements of this kind, compare their layout to the memory, and fly along them to seek their way home.

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50 Fish, 50 States: Rudd of South Dakota

Cool Green Science

Many invasive fish are well known and well publicized. But you might not have heard about rudd. The post 50 Fish, 50 States: Rudd of South Dakota appeared first on Cool Green Science.

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The UK has almost no credible plans to adapt to climate change

New Scientist

Advisers to the UK government warn that failure to plan for the effects of climate change is putting the country at risk of threats such as food shortages and power blackouts

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Why Soil Health Is So Important to the Agriculture Resilience Act

Union of Concerned Scientists

The Agriculture Resilience Act (ARA) was reintroduced today in Congress by Representative Chellie Pingree (D-Maine). The ARA is perhaps the most comprehensive and concise legislation (mind you, it still runs a good number of pages!) to integrate food and farm policy in a way that addresses climate change and helps farmers reduce their carbon emissions.

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Lauded as Green Model, Costa Rica Faces Unrest in Its Forests

Yale E360

Costa Rica has won international acclaim for its initiatives to restore its forests. But those successes are now jeopardized by conflicts over the government’s failure to return traditional lands to the Indigenous people who are regarded as the best forest stewards.

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Ford Is Focusing on Electrifying its Vehicles to Reduce CO2 Emissions

Environment + Energy Leader

By 2026, Ford Motor Company will produce more than 2 million EVs. By 2030, EVs will represent half of the global volume: two-thirds of European commercial vehicle sales will be all-electric or plug-in hybrid by 2030, and all European commercial vehicles will be zero emission by 2035. The post Ford Is Focusing on Electrifying its Vehicles to Reduce CO2 Emissions appeared first on Environment + Energy Leader.

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Wings, not webs: Certain bugs are the winners of urbanization, impacting cities’ insect diversity

Frontiers

By Deborah Pirchner, Frontiers science writer Image: Dr Marion Chatelain. Occurrence and abundance of the ‘cucumber green spider’ decreased along the rural-urban gradient. Urban spread goes hand in hand with wildlife habitat loss and fragmentation. This impacts all animals, down to the smallest. Scientists found that the level of urbanization impacts arthropod abundance, richness, and diversity, factors which likely alter the foraging behavior of bigger animals.

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