The environment

My family in Vermont sent me Bill McKibben’s 2005 book (updated in 2014) as a Christmas gift. In it, he recounts a meandering trek through the Lake Champlain region of the Adirondacks. It’s part nature writing, partly an account of the history of the region and the ways his neighbours are tying to earn a […]

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The New York Times reports this as a section from President Obama’s farewell address: Take the challenge of climate change. In just eight years we’ve halved our dependence on foreign oil, we’ve doubled our renewable energy, we’ve led the world to an agreement that (at) the promise to save this planet. (APPLAUSE) But without bolder […]

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The battle for the future is precisely between those who are willing to engineer every organism for our convenience , who will countenance the radical change of our climate rather than risk any damage to our cosseted and swaddled Economy, and those who are willing to say there is something other than us that counts. […]

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LED bulbs are dramatically more efficient than incandescent or halogen lamps, and beat out compact fluorescent bulbs in terms of how quickly they turn on and avoiding toxic contents. These bulbs, which are now widely available in large hardware stores, plug directly into a socket that would previously have taken an incandescent bulb and include […]

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Sometimes paired with the fallacious argument that only people who use no fossil fuels can legitimately oppose fossil fuel development is the statement: “We won’t stop using fossil fuels tomorrow”. The logical error associated with using this statement to defend new fossil fuel infrastructure like fracking wells and bitumen sands pipelines (as well as new […]

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The Economist has published an interesting article about Christian churches supporting the water defenders at Standing Rock: Standing Rock is a new turn in Christian ties with native Americans.

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Tonight Toronto350.org organized a vigil to resist the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion, which took place along with 44 others across Canada. Justin Trudeau is going to find that his promises about indigenous reconciliation and restoring Canada’s environmental reputation require him to stop further bitumen sands extraction and export. If not, he will end up as […]

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In a piece for The Guardian, Thomas Piketty argues that inequality in the U.S. and the failure of governments to address it are the primary cause of Trump’s victory. He argues that: The main lesson for Europe and the world is clear: as a matter of urgency, globalization must be fundamentally re-oriented. The main challenges […]

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For a few reasons, I am trying to reconsider what sort of political activity presents the best odds of helping to mitigate the seriousness of climate change. I think people are right to target new fossil fuel infrastructure. There is a good chance of delaying or preventing many projects which would otherwise worsen humanity’s total […]

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Recent developments (before the US election) have left me worried that there is a broken culture in Toronto environmentalism, and perhaps the environmental movement more generally. Erosion of democracy First — Toronto350.org and (while it existed) UofT350.org were founded on a model of open and participatory decision making, where all volunteers are members who have […]

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