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Schools Doing Their Part To Improve Air Quality

PR Web - 1 hour 12 min ago

School-based idle reduction program continues to build on its success in lowering emissions in Colorado.

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12035220.htm

Categories: Environment

World’s First Foresight Encyclopedic Dictionary Available to the...

PR Web - 1 hour 12 min ago

The Millennium Project has produced the first encyclopedic dictionary, containing over 1,000 terms used by futurists in futures research and foresight.

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12036159.htm

Categories: Environment

Elegant White Party Dresses Now Provided by Distinguished Company...

PR Web - 1 hour 12 min ago

Recently, iFitDress.com, a popular supplier of wedding dresses and special occasion gowns for women, has announced its new selection of white party dresses. Additionally, the supplier has announced...

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12036747.htm

Categories: Environment

Cheap Homecoming Dresses From Shopofgirls.com Are Popular

PR Web - 1 hour 12 min ago

Shopofgirls.com, the distinguished wedding dress manufacturer and retailer, is now providing huge discounts (50%-70% off) for all its newly released homecoming outfits. The special offer will last...

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12036814.htm

Categories: Environment

Predictions Of Home Prices For 2016 And Beyond

PR Web - 1 hour 12 min ago

Peoples Home equity shares a recent Mortgage News Daily report highlighting the Bank of America Merrill Lynch home price predictions dating out to 2022.

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12039767.htm

Categories: Environment

Discounted VGA With Audio To HDMI Converters Available On China...

PR Web - 1 hour 12 min ago

Hiconn Electronics, a well-known electronics accessory supplier, has recently revealed its new range of VGA with Audio to HDMI Converters. To top it all, all these practical products are now available...

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12039799.htm

Categories: Environment

Road to Harmonious Love Outlined by Blanca Beyar in New Book

PR Web - 1 hour 12 min ago

Readers learn to let go of fear, emotional barriers in ‘Female Divine, Hurt No More’.

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/BlancaBeyar/FemaleDivineHurtNoMore/prweb12039800.htm

Categories: Environment

How a town in Maine is blocking an Exxon tar-sands pipeline

Grist.org - 1 hour 59 min ago

Citizens trying to stop the piping of tar-sands oil through their community wore blue “Clear Skies” shirts at a city council meeting in South Portland, Maine, this week. But they might as well have been wearing boxing gloves. The small city struck a mighty blow against Canadian tar-sands extraction.

“It’s been a long fight,” said resident Andy Jones after a 6-1 city council vote on Monday to approve the Clear Skies Ordinance, which will block the loading of heavy tar-sands bitumen onto tankers at the city’s port.

The measure is intended to stop ExxonMobil and partner companies from bringing Albertan tar-sands oil east through an aging pipeline network to the city’s waterfront. Currently, the pipeline transports conventional oil west from Portland to Canada; the companies want to reverse its flow.

After an intensely debated, year-and-a-half battle, the South Portland City Council on Monday sided with residents like Jones who don’t want their city to end up as a new “international hub” for the export of tar-sands oil.

Dan WoodProponents of the Clear Skies ordinance, wearing blue, packed a South Portland city council meeting on July 9.

“The message to the tar sands industry is: ‘Don’t be counting your chickens yet,’” said Dylan Voorhees, clean energy director for the Natural Resources Council of Maine. “There is a pattern of communities saying ‘no’ to the threat of tar-sands oil.”

A clear signal

The ordinance could have global implications. The Canadian government expects the nation’s oil industry to be producing 4 million to 6 million barrels of tar-sands bitumen a day within a few years, and it’s pinning its hopes on somehow getting all that oil to coastal ports, said Richard Kuprewicz, president of Washington-based pipeline safety consulting firm Accufacts Inc. Indeed, a recent report from the International Energy Agency found that the industry needs export pipelines in order for its boom to continue.

South Portland’s move is just the latest setback for plans to pipe the bitumen out to international markets. Another big hurdle is the long delay over the Keystone XL pipeline. And in Canada, pipeline plans have met with opposition from indigenous peoples (known as First Nations), who are taking the lead to stop projects like the Enbridge Northern Gateway tar-sands pipeline through British Columbia.

Now, there is a clear signal that communities along the U.S. East Coast will fight tar-sands expansion too.

“Do not under estimate the power of a local government,” said Kuprewicz.

“A lot of perseverance”

In early 2013, residents formed Protect South Portland to try to stop the Portland-Montreal Pipeline reversal. They put an initiative on the November 2013 ballot to block the project, but it lost narrowly at the polls.

So the city council took up the cause. In December of last year, the council voted to impose a six-month moratorium on shipping tar-sands oil out through its port. Then a council-appointed committee crafted the Clear Skies Ordinance to permanently block tar-sands shipments, which is what the council officially approved this week. The law also changes zoning rules to block the construction of twin smokestacks that would be needed to burn off bitumen-thinning chemicals before the oil could be shipped out.

Over the past few months, concerned residents met in homes and Protect South Portland grew. Meanwhile, the group Energy Citizens, backed by the American Petroleum Institute, the oil industry’s largest trade group, ran ads that said “It’s just oil. From Canada.” The oil companies hired a number of lawyers and brought public relations firms on board.

Protect South Portland spokeswoman MJ Ferrier estimates that the grassroots group was outspent by at least 6 to 1.

So how did residents win over Big Oil? “A lot of perseverance and a lot of community engagement,” Voorhees said.

After the vote, supporters of the ordinance went to a local bar, and “we raised our glasses,” Jones told Grist.

Cautious celebration

But while local activists are celebrating this week’s win, they know “this is not the end,” said Jones.

South Portland Councilor Tom Blake, who’s been a champion of the effort to protect the city from tar sands, said a legal challenge seems imminent, by either Portland Pipe Line Corp., a subsidiary of ExxonMobil, or by the Canadian government. Blake had this message for the oil company and Canadian officials Monday evening: “This ordinance is the will of the people,” he said. “Do not spend millions of dollars and force the city of South Portland to do the same.”

But the oil interests are unlikely to heed his warning.

Tom Hardison, vice president of Portland Pipe Line, told reporters that the city had made a rush decision and bowed to environmental “off-oil extremists.” He added that the zoning changes amounted to a “job-killing ordinance” that prevents the city’s port from adapting to meet the energy needs of North America.

Matthew Manahan, attorney for Portland Pipe Line, told the city council before the vote that its ordinance is “illegal” and “would clearly be preempted by federal and state law.”

“The council is ignoring the law” and “ignoring science,” the lawyer added.

Air and water worries

Like the process of extracting tar-sands oil, the process of transporting it takes a huge toll on the environment. Before the heavy, almost-solid bitumen can be sent through pipelines, it has to be thinned with a concoction of liquid natural gas and other hydrocarbons. And then before it can be loaded onto ships, that concoction has to be burned off. ExxonMobil currently holds permits to build two smokestacks on South Portland’s waterfront that would do the burning.

Ferrier, a retired psychologist and a nun, joined Protect South Portland largely out of concern for what the oil companies’ plans would do to air quality in an area that has already received a “C” for ozone pollution from the American Lung Association. The proposed smokestacks would emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs). “We know there is benzene in it, a known carcinogen,” said Ferrier.

Resident Andrew Parker had similar concerns. “Tonight is about children,” he said at Monday’s city council meeting. “The oil company will put poison in the air, that is a fact.”

For Mayor Gerard Jalbert, who also sits on the city council and voted in support of the ordinance, it came down to concerns about water quality. The risk of water contamination in the case of a spill far outweighed the nebulous claims about job creation.

“When I look at the economic benefit, which no seems to be able to detail, the risk seems to outweigh the benefit,” Jalbert told Grist.

The easternmost 236-mile stretch of pipeline crosses some of the most sensitive ecosystems in Maine, including the Androscoggin River, the pristine Crooked River, and Sebago Lake, which supplies drinking water for 15 percent of the state’s population.

Blake, the council member, is worried that using old pipes to transport heavy bitumen could lead to a spill like the one that happened in Mayflower, Ark., in March 2013, when an ExxonMobil pipeline built in the 1940s ruptured and spilled hundreds of thousands of gallons of tar-sands oil.

Saying “no” to tar sands is part of a bigger shift to a greener future in South Portland, Blake added. “Being a community that has been heavily dependent on petroleum, this turns a tide,” the councilor said.

He pointed to a new electric-car charging station at the city’s community center and potential plans to build a solar farm on an old landfill as steps toward a sustainable future. “I think we are starting to walk the talk,” Blake said.


Filed under: Article, Business & Technology, Climate & Energy, Politics
Categories: Environment

Hidden Hills Landscaping and Gardening At 818 796-3348 Offers...

PR Web - 7 hours 13 min ago

Hidden Hills Landscaping and Gardening announces that they are offering specials to New Hidden Hills residents who call (818) 796-3348.

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12039683.htm

Categories: Environment

Will drones save the rhinos? Some conservationists say it’s launch time

Grist.org - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 23:39

Even as the teensy unarmed planes continue to invade American skies, words like “drones” and “surveillance” tend not to elicit warm and fuzzy feelings. But are there certain cases where being kept under bot watch will be welcomed?

Because drones are both nimble and thrifty, idealists are launching drones on feel-good missions across the globe. Yesterday, I wrote about the potential for drones to keep us in the know of what goes on with our food. Here are some other projects that aim to use camera-armed drones for the good of the planet — and why skepticism might keep these projects from taking off.

Drones that spot illegal fishing

Shutterstock

Ocean conservationists may be psyched about Obama’s plan for a supersized marine protected area. But, given that 20 percent of seafood is caught illegally, marine sanctuaries may matter a lot less when the rules aren’t enforced. That’s why the government of Belize is testing the waters with drone surveillance by using them to monitor their Glover’s Reef Marine Reserve.

From National Geographic:

Belize has only 70 fisheries enforcement officers to patrol its 240 miles (386 kilometers) of Caribbean coast and more than 200 islands. And with fuel prices rising, the enforcement budget has been shrinking. As a result, fishermen get away with flouting the law, says [Julio Maaz, Wildlife Conservation Society's fisheries coordinator with Belize] – especially crews based in nearby Honduras and Guatemala.

But now a new weapon is being tested in the fight against pirate fishing: drones.

The possible pitfall? National Geographic reports that specially marketed anti-drone bullets may hint at conflict to come (though, ahem Nat Geo, I’m pretty sure that was just an April fool’s joke. In reality, any bullet would probably do the trick).

Drones that take down poachers 

balti-sam

If you have a heart, you love baby rhinos. And yet rhinos — and other animals, like elephants and tigers – are still being poached. Because even thousands of miles of protected habitat will fall short of keeping them alive if that land isn’t regulated properly. Once again, drones can step in!

From Smithsonian:

In the last few years … conservationists have begun to develop [drones] to survey wildlife, monitor deforestation and help park rangers locate poachers before apprehending them on foot. Scientists believe the tool could revolutionize the way conservation is done in many countries, slashing the costs of monitoring large, rugged areas and, ultimately, better protecting wildlife from threats.

“The pressure on natural resources in almost all conservation spaces on the planet is increasing,” says David Wilkie, director of conservation support for the Wildlife Conservation Society, which is testing drones in Madagascar, Cambodia and Palau, among other places. “How do you move beyond enforcing the law and catching guys with ivory to preventing them from shooting the elephants in the first place? Can we use drones to do that? That gets people’s ears pricked up and they begin to think, oh my gosh, this could really be a game changer.”

Well, when you call it a game changer, it sure sounds sexy. But The Guardian warns that the new method could backfire, because the rural communities around the parks so strongly associate them with “sinister technologies or surveillance” or “associated with warfare and civilian causalities.”

“The conservation community needs to consider this carefully because any mistakes could alienate local people and undermine the long-term relationships on which conservation success depends,” The Guardian says.

Drones that fight China’s rampant pollution

Shutterstock / Hung Chung ChihThe Chinese are fed up with pollution.

Earlier this year, China’s Premier Li Keqiang announced that China is engaging in combat of a different sort: a “war on pollution.” And the country’s Ministry of Environmental Protection is getting drones involved in the battle.

From Bloomberg Businessweek:

The unmanned aerial vehicles, which are equipped with infrared cameras, can detect whether factories illegally release emissions at times when inspectors aren’t present, according to the ministry. So far its four drones have flown watchdog missions over Beijing, Hebei, Shanxi, and Inner Mongolia – all heavily polluted regions in coal-reliant northern China.

As Bloomberg reports, earlier this month the ministry announced that of the 254 factories and businesses the drones observed, 64 were flagged for further investigation.

Are drones here for good?

At the very least, these three examples go to show that environmental agencies are getting more creative with their bots. But whether these environmental drones are here to stay may still come down to this big question: when, where, and how much do we think it’s OK to be watched?


Filed under: Article, Business & Technology, Living
Categories: Environment

George Harrison memorial tree falls victim to climate-driven irony

Grist.org - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 22:03

If you’re wondering what killed the George Harrison memorial tree in L.A.’s Griffith Park, the short answer is irony. I think. I learned about irony from Alanis Morissette, so hopefully I got that right, but I’d better just let Randy Lewis at the Los Angeles Times explain:

The George Harrison Tree was killed by beetles.

Thanks, Randy. (Yes, we’re talking about that George Harrison.)

So that’s the short answer. The long answer, however, could be climate change. The Harrison tree was a Cayman Islands Pine, and bark beetles love pine and bark beetles love it hot. Fewer cold snaps mean fewer beetle die-offs, but even more frighteningly, warmer temperatures may be speeding up the beetles reproductive cycle, triggering a massive increase in the beetle population.

In climate change’s defense, if bark beetles hadn’t destroyed the tree, Yoko would have.


Filed under: Climate & Energy
Categories: Environment

Earth crushes another temperature record; not getting much love from the stands

Grist.org - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 21:50

The Earth is currently riding a hot streak that would make Barry Bonds blush. This May was the hottest May in history, and, we learned today, it was followed by the hottest June.

June marked the 352nd consecutive hotter-than-average month, a stretch reaching back to February of 1985, and it doesn’t show any signs of cooling off. So far this year, every month but February has been one of the four hottest on record, and, with an El Niño on deck, 2014 is well on its way to becoming the hottest year in history.

If you’re suspicious that, with a streak like that, the planet must be juicing, well, you’re not alone. Seth Borenstien of the Associated Press spoke with NOAA’s chief of climate monitoring, Derek Arndt, and it sounds like this is more than a corked climate bat:

“We are living in the steroid era of the climate system,” Arndt said.

Arndt said both the June and May records were driven by unusually hot oceans, especially the Pacific and Indian oceans.

Heat records in June broke on every continent but Antarctica, especially in New Zealand, northern South America, Greenland, central Africa and southern Asia.

The United States had only its 33rd hottest June.

All 12 of the world’s monthly heat records have been set after 1997, more than half in the last decade. All the global cold monthly records were set before 1917.

At this point, denying anthropogenic climate change is akin to believing professional wrestling is real — or, to stick with my original metaphor (something they told us at writer’s school is important), it’s like watching Barry Bonds’ head grow a hat size a season, along with his home run totals, and thinking, “Dang. He must be working out.”


Filed under: Climate & Energy
Categories: Environment

Millions alive today would have to die before the paleo diet could take over

Grist.org - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 21:35

The idea of going paleo is attractive to someone like me, who feels he is living in an unhealthy, vapid world of consumerism. The sprawl of modern humanity is clearly unhealthy for earth’s biodiversity and for the stability of our climate. And it makes a lot of sense that our modern lifestyle would prove unhealthy for us: Our bodies were shaped for hundreds of thousands of years to hunt and gather — and yet we insist on sitting down all day while eating things our ancestors would not recognize as food. We keep introducing new things that don’t fit into the natural environment or the environment of our bodies.

There’s a natural yearning to backtrack — to get back to the garden. But there’s a problem, usually unacknowledged, with the whole paleo phenomenon: Going back to a hunter-gatherer’s meat-heavy diet is impossible unless we cull our population to pre-agricultural levels. There have been no reasonable proposals for achieving quick population reduction. And so we are faced with a sad reality: We can’t ever go home again.

In this week’s New Yorker, Elizabeth Kolbert wrote about putting her family on the paleo diet while reviewing “a small library of what might be called paleo literature — how-to books that are mostly how-to-undo books.”

The proposed “undo” is gobsmackingly gargantuan. It suggests that agriculture, and the civilization built upon farming was, as Jared Diamond put it, “The Worst Mistake in the History of the Human Race.” There is evidence that agriculture was, indeed, a mistake. When people started farming around the world, they became sicker and smaller. And today we are beset by a suite of diseases, from Type 2 diabetes to asthma, that seem to result from the mismatch between our Paleolithic bodies and a world where everything is super-sized, sterilized, deep-fried, ultra-wide Naugahyde. Here’s Kolbert:

Paleo may look like a food fad, and yet you could argue that it’s really just the reverse. Anatomically modern humans have, after all, been around for about 200,000 years. The genus Homo goes back another two million years or so. On the timescale of evolutionary history, it’s agriculture that’s the fad.

But agriculture is an unusual sort of fad — a fad our lives depend upon. It’s got its hooks in us. Farming allowed the human population to exceed the earth’s previous carrying capacity. The creation of synthetic fertilizers expanded that carrying capacity again. And now, like it or not, we’re stuck.

A new study, just out from the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, reaffirms that meat production has an outsized impact on climate change, and that beef is the worst offender. It suggests that, if we want to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, it would be more effective to give up red meat than to stop driving cars. This means that, “from an environmental standpoint, paleo’s ‘Let them eat steak’ approach is a disaster,” Kolbert wrote.

I expect Kolbert, who wrote Field Notes from a Catastrophe and The Sixth Extinction, would agree that it’s a disaster either way. We’re now in the unfortunate position of choosing the lesser of disasters. And when things look bleak, the idea of pressing the reset button is enthralling. When I was younger I was always hoping for radical revolution, but the more I learned about history the more disappointed I became in revolutions. When you wipe the slate clean and kick out the bastards, a new set of bastards always take over. The deep structural problems that were there from the beginning always reemerge. I eventually came around to thinking that it’s almost always better to tinker with a broken system than to burn everything down and start from scratch.

Our bodies have already started tinkering, finding ways to make do in an imperfect environment. My DNA, for example, contains a mutation that allows me to digest milk for my entire life rather than just my infant nursing days. This was a swift adaptation to the partnership between humans and cattle. Another mutation allows the production of an enzyme in saliva that breaks down starches from grains. Our bodies aren’t completely Paleolithic. Another New Yorker contributor, the doctor Jerome Groopman, has written about the wealth of evidence suggesting that, overall, humans have gotten healthier since the advent of agriculture. Yes, we got shorter and sicker immediately after we started farming, but since then we’ve become taller and healthier than ever before. It’s true that that positive trend has stalled out in the U.S. since the 1950s, but it hasn’t stalled uniformly: The rich seem to be taller and longer-lived than ever; it’s the poor who are taking a beating.

Groopman writes:

The average height of native-born American males has not significantly changed since the middle of the twentieth century. This plateau contrasts with the trends in Europe, where growth increases have continued, dramatically in countries like the Netherlands, which now has on average the tallest European men. Factors that have been considered by way of explanation of static American growth are social inequality, an inferior health care system, and fewer welfare safety nets compared to western and northern Europe, despite our high per capita income.

As usual, the real problem is political, not biological.

There’s a lot of good coming from the paleo movement. The ability to take the evolutionary perspective on human health has already led to breakthroughs (like this), and more will follow.

But watch out for the ideology that often goes with paleo purists — the assumption that the only way forward is to find our way back to Eden. Neither humans, nor the earth’s ecosystems, are fragile. We are dynamic, always changing and adapting. This doesn’t excuse our staggering recklessness, but it does suggest that we shouldn’t aim for a static vision of the past. The world has changed inalterably. Ignoring that fact leads us to focus on things like Vibram FiveFingers and steak tartare, rather than more important issues. If we really care about human health, and the health of the earth, we need to focus on inequality and poverty. Paleo is just a trendy distraction.


Filed under: Article, Climate & Energy, Food
Categories: Environment

Pathian Introduces Component Level Benchmarking — a Game Changer for...

PR Web - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 21:34

New benchmarking application enables up to $60B in annual energy spending to be repurposed.

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12037337.htm

Categories: Environment

Association of Zoos & Aquariums Awards 30 Nature Play Grants

PR Web - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 21:34

Zoos and Aquariums Set to Receive More than $200,000 in Awards

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12037791.htm

Categories: Environment

Good news: Mother jailed for sending daughter to playground is freed. Bad news: McDonald’s fires her

Grist.org - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 20:31

If there weren’t enough reasons to protest McDonald’s, here’s another: Remember Debra Harrell, the mother who went to jail for sending her daughter to the playground? Well, McDonald’s, her employer at the time, fired her.

Bryce Covert reports for Think Progress:

While Robert Phillips, the attorney representing her pro bono at McGowan, Hood & Felder, said that she was released from jail the day after she was arrested on bond, he confirmed that she had been let go from her job. He didn’t have any information as to why. A spokesperson for McDonald’s declined to comment, saying it is inappropriate to discuss a human resources issue. She also said the company is cooperating with local police in their investigation of the situation.

It is believed that Harrell let her daughter go to the playground alone because she couldn’t afford childcare. But daycare will be even farther out of reach without a job.

Fortunately for her family, almost $27,000 has been raised online for her troubles. She’s also been reunited with her daughter, who was in the state’s custody while Harrell was in jail.

But the message this sends to other mothers similarly situated, who lack childcare options, is chilling. And those chills will especially be felt at that playground. Imagine the eyes and gazes that will be set on black children in this community now, from people looking for more parents like Harrell to report.

It just might be enough to keep some black kids from playing outside without a parent close-by, and African Americans don’t need more reasons to avoid the outdoors.


Filed under: Article, Business & Technology, Food
Categories: Environment

The strange relationship between global warming denial and … speaking English

Grist.org - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 19:22

Here in the United States, we fret a lot about global warming denial. Not only is it a dangerous delusion, it’s an incredibly prevalent one. Depending on your survey instrument of choice, we regularly learn that substantial minorities of Americans deny, or are skeptical of, the science of climate change.

The global picture, however, is quite different. For instance, recently the U.K.-based market research firm Ipsos MORI released its “Global Trends 2014” report, which included a number of survey questions on the environment asked across 20 countries. (h/t Leo Hickman). And when it came to climate change, the result was very telling:

Ipsos MORI Global Trends, 2014

Note that these results are not perfectly comparable across countries, because the data were gathered online, and Ipsos MORI cautions that for developing countries like India and China, “the results should be viewed as representative of a more affluent and ‘connected’ population.”

Nonetheless, some pretty significant patterns are apparent. Perhaps most notably: Not only is the United States clearly the worst in its climate denial, but Great Britain and Australia are second and third worst, respectively. Canada, meanwhile, is the seventh worst.

What do these four nations have in common? They all speak the language of Shakespeare.

Why would that be? After all, presumably there is nothing about English, in and of itself, that predisposes you to climate change denial. Words and phrases like “doubt,” “natural causes,” “climate models,” and other skeptic mots are readily available in other languages. So what’s the real cause?

One possible answer is that it’s all about the political ideologies prevalent in these four countries.

“I do not find these results surprising,” says Riley Dunlap, a sociologist at Oklahoma State University who has extensively studied the climate denial movement. “It’s the countries where neo-liberalism is most hegemonic and with strong neo-liberal regimes (both in power and lurking on the sidelines to retake power) that have bred the most active denial campaigns – U.S., U.K., Australia, and now Canada. And the messages employed by these campaigns filter via the media and political elites to the public, especially the ideologically receptive portions.” (Neoliberalism is an economic philosophy centered on the importance of free markets and broadly opposed to big government interventions.)

Indeed, the English language media in three of these four countries are linked together by a single individual: Rupert Murdoch. An apparent climate skeptic or lukewarmer, Murdoch is the chair of News Corp and 21st Century Fox. (You can watch him express his climate views here.) Some of the media outlets subsumed by the two conglomerates that he heads are responsible for quite a lot of English language climate skepticism and denial.

In the U.S., Fox News and The Wall Street Journal lead the way; research shows that Fox watching increases distrust of climate scientists. (You can also catch Fox News in Canada.) In Australia, a recent study found that slightly under a third of climate-related articles in 10 top Australian newspapers “did not accept” the scientific consensus on climate change, and that News Corp papers – The Australian, The Herald Sun, and The Daily Telegraph – were particular hotbeds of skepticism. “The Australian represents climate science as matter of opinion or debate rather than as a field for inquiry and investigation like all scientific fields,” noted the study.

And then there’s the U.K. A 2010 academic study found that while News Corp outlets in this country from 1997 to 2007 did not produce as much strident climate skepticism as did their counterparts in the U.S. and Australia, “the Sun newspaper offered a place for scornful sceptics on its opinion pages as did The Times and Sunday Times to a lesser extent.” (There are also other outlets in the U.K., such as the Daily Mail, that feature plenty of skepticism but aren’t owned by News Corp.)

Thus, while there may not be anything inherent to the English language that impels climate denial, the fact that English language media are such a major source of that denial may in effect create a language barrier.

And media aren’t the only reason that denialist arguments are more readily available in the English language. There’s also the Anglophone nations’ concentration of climate “skeptic” think tanks, which provide the arguments and rationalizations necessary to feed this anti-science position. According to a study in Climatic Change earlier this year, the U.S. is home to 91 different organizations (think tanks, advocacy groups, and trade associations) that collectively comprise a “climate change counter-movement.” The annual funding of these organizations, collectively, is “just over $900 million.” That is a truly massive amount of English-speaking climate “skeptic” activity, and while the study was limited to the U.S., it is hard to imagine that anything comparable exists in non-English speaking countries.

Ben Page, the chief executive of Ipsos MORI (which released the data) adds another possible causative factor behind the survey’s results, noting that environmental concern is very high in China today, due to the omnipresent conditions of environmental pollution. By contrast, that’s not a part of your everyday experience in England or Australia. “In many surveys in China, environment is the top concern,” Page comments. “In contrast, in the west, it’s a long way down the list behind the economy and crime.”

Whatever the precise concatenation of causes, the evidence seems clear. We English speakers have a special problem when it comes to understanding and accepting climate science. In language, we’re Anglophones; but in climate science, we’re a bunch of Anglophonies.

This story was produced as part of the Climate Desk collaboration.


Filed under: Climate & Energy
Categories: Environment

Hopper Foods Launches Kickstarter Campaign for Revolutionary Energy...

PR Web - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 18:34

Hopper Foods LLC, which specializes in energy snacks made from nutritious insects, is launching a new Kickstarter campaign on July 23, 2014, for its latest range of health bars. Cricket flour is a...

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12031335.htm

Categories: Environment

The Toledo Zoo Recruits Volunteer Divers for the Renovated Aquarium

PR Web - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 18:34

Ed Conn, a certified PADI Divemaster, works to create and facilitate a new volunteer diving program at the Toledo Zoo to help care for the newly renovated Aquarium.

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12015678.htm

Categories: Environment

Air Conditioning Burnaby Service Provider Claims to Beat Competitor...

PR Web - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 18:34

Air conditioning in Burnaby is a matter of grave importance. Pro Ace Care is proud to announce affordable rates at http://acecare.ca/.

(PRWeb July 22, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/07/prweb12032630.htm

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