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So Much For The Climate Change ‘Hoax’

New research out Monday seems at first glance to give climate doubters new ammunition in their war against climate science. In fact, it undercuts one of their essential criticisms.

The peer-reviewed journal Nature Geoscience released a surprising new paper finding that the world may have a little more room than previously thought to cut greenhouse gas emissions. A group of European scientists — foreigners, no less! — recalculated the Earth’s “carbon budget,” which is the amount of carbon dioxide humans can add to the atmosphere before risking dangerous temperature thresholds. They found that humanity’s remaining emissions allowance may be significantly larger than previous calculations. That means that the world may have a better chance of keeping warming to relatively benign levels if governments act with ambition now — or that they may have more time to dawdle before the problem gets bad.


The paper unsettled climate circles. Expert critics suggested to Post reporter Chris Mooney that the paper failed to account for atmospheric aerosols and other factors that can confound warming estimates. Scientists will not suddenly adopt the rosier assessment. That will take much more scrutiny, debate and research.


These are some of the events trending for week ending September 22, 2017

  • A Pile Of Trash In The Ocean Has Grown To The Size Of France—And Some People Want It Recognized As A Nation

There’s a country-sized problem in the north Pacific Ocean: a patch of trash has grown to the size of France. So the environmental charity Plastic Oceans Foundation has paired up with the news and entertainment publication LadBible to campaign for it to be recognized as an official country.

The campaign claims that, under Article 1 of the 1993 Montevideo Convention on the rights and duties of states, a country must be able to: define a territory, form a government, interact with other states, and have a permanent population. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch has borders (sort of), and it’s easy to create a government and institutions for interacting with others. Now with former US vice president Al Gore signing up as the country’s first citizen and more than 100,000 signing the petition to be granted citizenship, the campaign has submitted its application earlier this month to the United Nations to recognize the Trash Isles as the world’s 196th country.

  • Garbage From Hurricane Irma Will Now Help Power Florida

Hurricane Irma left a mess of destruction in its wake. But in Florida, some of that trash will be put to good use – as electricity. Garbage will be burned in waste-to-energy plants that can produce enough power for around 30,000 homes.

  • Rebuilding A Resilient, Renewable Caribbean

Last week, Hurricane Irma ripped through the Caribbean with devastating fury. Its 185-mph winds smashed buildings, downed trees and power lines, overturned trucks and tossed boats ashore like toys. Its storm surges turned streets into raging rivers and flooded whole communities. Irma, the strongest Category 5 hurricane on record in the North Atlantic, killed more than three dozen people and caused staggering amounts of damage.

  • 600+ Leading Companies Are Creating Unstoppable Climate Momentum

Unprecedented momentum is being delivered by over 600 companies committed to bold climate action, through the We Mean Business coalition’s Take Action campaign. The campaign brings together strategic climate commitments, facilitated by the We Mean Business coalition partners, which are collectively helping these companies tackle some 2.31 gigatons of Scope 1+2 emissions – equivalent to the total annual emissions of Russia. These initiatives are also helping companies to harness climate action as a driver of innovation, competitiveness, risk management and growth.


  • ‘Eastside Sol’ Envisions The Clean Energy Future We Want To Build Together

California has made great progress rolling out programs intended to make clean energy technologies like solar power and electric vehicles more affordable for all Californians. However, if we are going to continue to lead the vision for what a clean energy future can look like, we still have a lot of work to do. These programs still need effective ways to reach low-income communities who are most impacted by pollution and climate change, and who oftentimes lack the resources and information to access them.

  • Is It Actually Possible To Live Without Plastic For A Week?

I’ve always considered myself a mindful person when it comes to the environment. I’m vegetarian, I try to be conscious of the origins of my food, I take public transport as much as possible and I’m an avid recycler.

But, if I’m being honest, I’ve never delved into what actually happens to my rubbish or recycling after I chuck it into the respective bins.

So, I took on a challenge to live without plastic for a week and the statistics and realities of what I learnt was shocking. And, although I may never be ‘zero waste,’ I can certainly put a dent in how much I’m contributing to landfill and that’s a start, isn’t it? Here’s what I learnt…

Video Of The Week

Scientists have come up with a US$500 billion plan to refreeze the Arctic


Newsbriefs is the weekly newsletter of the NJGA.  It covers topics of intents that have a direct impact on our environment and on our lives.  It also alerts our members and friends of upcoming meeting events, as well as seminars and webinars.

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