Monthly Archives: October 2014

Conservation biology and the endarkenment

ehrlichPaul R. Ehrlich

The following commentary was written in response to an essay published in AMBIO earlier this year; Ehrlich’s response was published in AMBIO in September 2014. Read the rest of this entry

It’s Personal: Why leaders don’t turn climate knowledge into action

The prime minister’s business adviser Maurice Newman continues to distract business leaders on the issue of climate change. Courtesy of Julian Smith/AAP

The prime minister’s business adviser Maurice Newman continues to distract business leaders on the issue of climate change. Courtesy of Julian Smith/AAP

By Simon Divecha

There is an abundance of profitable business opportunity to be found in addressing sustainability issues. These stand out against the difficulties we face implementing effective change. Globally, the World Bank recently found that tackling climate change would help to grow the world’s economy by US$1.8 to 2.6 trillion a year. Read the rest of this entry

If I had a hammer

 xzcvxzvAdapted from a Presentation by William H. Schlesinger – President, The Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies

April 25, 2014, as the 5th Ned Ames Honorary Lecture – Millbrook, NY

Currently, we are seeing that the behavior Homo sapiens is not really much different from the other species that occupy our planet.  When overcrowded and with short resources, fighting, malnutrition and disease erupt.  Self-centered, rather than group, behavior dominates.  We listen to a few (economists and religious zealots) who promise that a better future awaits.  We pursue our biological fitness and cannot talk about over-population as part of the problem. In the end a few will survive and most of the rest are extinguished. We are scarcely sapiens.
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Muddy business in the Yellow Sea

1Eduardo Gallo-Cajiao

Eduardo Gallo-Cajiao has been mentored by Professor Graham Pyke for several years and is currently a PhD student at the University of Queensland.

Coastal development in the Yellow Sea has been occurring at the expense of important habitats; however recent decisions by the South Korean government may provide some hope. The question now is: are we prepared and determined to seize the opportunity? Read the rest of this entry

Where are the influencers?

Basil Saab

 Celebrities have stayed largely silent on the issue of climate change. It’s time they took a stronger stance.

2323232323We know this from history: when the masses collectively get behind an idea, change is sure to follow. We’ve seen it in the 1963 March on Washington, the abolition of slavery, even the ‘Ice Bucket Challenge’ raising money for ALS. We may have seen it recently in New York City, with 300,000 marching in the People’s Climate March.

But we also know a cultural shift won’t happen until an influential voice rises above the noise and rallies the people into action: Ronald Reagan amid the late-1970’s malaise for Americans, Jane Fonda in North Vietnam, or Nelson Mandela in South Africa. Read the rest of this entry

The Occluded Mirror: A Question of True Transparency

cgfdfMichael Charles Tobias and Jane Gray Morrison

So it is now “official”: we can expect to see no stabilization of the human population by 2100. By that time, we are likely to number 11 billion, with at least a meager likelihood of our having hit 13 billion. “Meager” has always boded ill in terms of scientific projections. Our worst nightmares – whether of genocides or the unleashing of chemical, biological or radiological warfare – have always come true. Twenty-two civilizations have gone extinct as a result of those societies consuming beyond their ecological carrying capacity. Read the rest of this entry

We’re Looking For Ten Climate Scientist Who Will Do What The Ten Florida Scientists Have Done.

wadsBob Horn – Human Sciences and Technology Advanced Research Institute, Stanford University

A recent Millennium Alliance for Humanity and the Biosphere (MAHB) blog explained how ten climate scientists have influenced the close Florida governor’s race. Here’s a follow-up to last week’s report. Read the rest of this entry

Environmental Ineffectiveness

Courtesy of:

Courtesy of:

Paul R. Ehrlich

Years ago when I was on the board of the Audubon Society, one of the group’s main foci was recycling. Recycling is a complex business. Sometimes it makes sense to recycle, sometimes not, depending on the product, the materials it is made of, the location of the recycler relative to recycling facilities, and so on. The claim is sometimes made that recycling is beneficial because it adds to awareness of environmental problems. The counter to this is that a person wheeling their recycling to the curb past a five-car garage containing five large SUVs, one for each kid, could actually believe he or she is living an environmentally benign existence. Considering this complexity, I repeatedly suggested that Audubon recycling literature always include a statement to the effect that no matter how much recycling is practiced the collapse of civilization will be delayed very little by it as long as the human population and consumption by the rich continues to grow Of course, no such statement was ever added. Read the rest of this entry


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