The environment

Checking through my routine administrative emails today, I was completely surprised to see a message from president Meric Gertler announcing that U of T will divest from fossil fuels: The evidence of a climate crisis is now incontrovertible. The most recent report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change adds further urgency to the need […]

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Every day I’m bombarded with objections to the evidence for human-caused climate change. Most of them sound respectably scientific, like “climate changes all the time; humans have nothing to do with it.” It’s “the Sun,” or “volcanoes,” or “cosmic rays” that are making it happen, or “it’s not even warming,” some argue. … Scientists call […]


Every community and all the infrastructure on Earth has been built with the expectation that past weather conditions will be broadly similar to future and present ones. Rapid climate change of the kind we are creating thus sets up a situation where what we have built in every place is less and less suited to […]

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Facing total obstruction from Republicans, Democrats themselves are notably divided on whether and how to act on climate change: However, these measures will have to garner the vote of every Democrat in the Senate to pass, with Joe Manchin, a centrist from West Virginia, skeptical of the size and scope of the $3.5tn spending proposal. […]


“How do I talk about this … to my mother, brother-in-law, friend, colleague, elected official?” I’m asked this question nearly everywhere I go. … Usually, they’ve already given conversation a try. They’ve boned up on a few alarming scientific facts. They’ve tried to explain how fast the Arctic is melting, or how bees are disappearing, […]


Back in 2008, I wrote about the Future Leaders Survey and the gloomy views it uncovered among young people about the future of the planet. Recently, The Lancet published a study based on a survey of 10,000 people aged 16–25 in 10 countries. It demonstrates that apocalyptic psychology is a broad-based phenomenon, not exclusively concentrated […]


Divest Harvard is announcing that the school has committed to divest. See also: President Bacow Reviews Harvard Climate Actions

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UBC professor Kathryn Harrison was interviewed by the CBC’s Front Burner: Where the major parties stand on climate change See also: Green platform promises big, largely uncosted social programs, end to fossil fuel industry Green Party releases platform with promises to cancel pipelines, boost carbon price Singh, Trudeau attack one another on climate plans as […]


Based on my experience of Canadian environment ministers (whatever the department is called at a given time), there are essentially two types. The rarer type is the genuine environmentalist who thinks they can get things done through the compromises of government. They’re true believers on climate change but rarely have much support from cabinet or […]


Back in 2012, Justin Trudeau said that “there’s not a country in the world that would find 170 billion barrels of oil under the ground and leave them there.” At an event in June organized by Bank of America, Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman supposedly said: “We are still going to be the […]