E-Waste – A big problem needing bigger solutions

E-WASTE: A big problem needing bigger solutions by Anna Kucirkova

In 1982, a family in the US bought a microwave oven. In 2012, thirty years later, the microwave was still working. In 2017, a young lady purchased an iPhone upgrade and a protective case. Four months later, with a splintered screen from a few bounces on the floor, the same young lady must purchase a new phone. This anecdote makes a vital point about electronics in this fast-moving technology age: they just don’t make ‘em like they used to. It also raises an important question: what should we do with electronic devices we don’t use anymore? Let’s dive deeper into the problematic issue of e-waste.

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“How Solar Energy Will Transform in 20 Years”

By Kyle Pennell – smartcitiesdive.com

The solar energy industry has been notoriously difficult to predict correctly, as energy experts at the International Energy Agency have constantly underestimated solar’s potential and growth. That said, there are many trends in solar that we can foresee continuing or accelerating over the next couple of decades. Here are five ways in which the use and creation of solar power will change by about 2037.

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“Is the Green Movement in Need of a Grassroots Revolution?”

By Imogen Reed

Revolution is now a topic of debate in popular culture after outspoken British comedian Russell Brand told the BBC’s Jeremy Paxman in an interview, that later went viral, that it was “time for a revolution.” After attacking leading British ministers and their policies, Brand then turned his attention to the United States of America, pouring scorn on the disparity that exists in that nation between rich and poor, where, according to Brand, “three hundred of the richest Americans have the same wealth as eighty five million of the poorest Americans.”

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“Why European attitudes to tackling climate change differ so much from America’s”

– by Imogen Reed

You’d have thought that with everything going on in Europe, such as the problems in the financial markets and the Eurozone, the threat of climate change would be way down on the agenda. However, a poll conducted at the end of last year during the height of the Eurozone crisis, showed that the majority of Europeans think that climate change and the threat of global warming was a more serious problem than the current financial turmoil.

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“Governments Have Given Up On The Planet” – George Monbiot

By George Monbiot

Governments have given up on the planet 
The post-summit pledge was an admission of defeat against
consumer capitalism. But we can still salvage the natural world.

It is, perhaps, the greatest failure of collective leadership since the first world war. The Earth’s living systems are collapsing, and the leaders of some of the most powerful nations, the United States, the UK, Germany, Russia, could not even be bothered to turn up and discuss it. Those who did attend the Earth summit in Rio last week solemnly agreed to keep stoking the destructive fires: sixteen times in their text they pledged to pursue “sustained growth”, the primary cause of the biosphere’s losses.
George Monbiot writing after Rio+20 summit held in Brazil, June 2012.

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“Understanding the Keystone decision”

by Alan Burns

A stunning victory for those opposed to the pipeline. The decision, coming just four days after 10,000 activists surrounded the White House to reinforce the message that the proposed pipeline which would have passed over the aquifer in Nebraska, was a surprise. While we’d learned on November 1st that President Obama had taken the decision away from the State Department, everyone expected his pronouncement later in the year or even perhaps next January.

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“The Next 500 Years of Sea Level Rise”

By Michael D. Lemonick – Climate Central.org

Climate change is raising global sea levels. This is not a good thing, but at least it’s all going to stop by the end of this century, right? Every news report about the topic talks about what will happen by 2100, or during the 21st century, or over the next hundred years. So do educational websites and so does the 800-lb. gorilla of climate science, the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPC).

The bad news: scientists didn’t pick 2100 because they think that’s when sea-level rise will stop. They picked it because their computer models of the climate get less reliable the farther out you go into the future. 

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“Am I an activist for caring about my grandchildren’s future?”

“How did you become an activist?” I was surprised by the question.  I never considered myself an activist. I am a slow-paced taciturn scientist from the Midwest US. Most of my relatives are pretty conservative. I can imagine attitudes at home toward “activists.”  Am I an activist for caring about my grandchildren’s future?  I guess I am. How had I been suckered into being an “activist”? Weren’t there other ways to do things in a democracy?

By Dr. James Hansen: Why I must speak out about climate change – TED video 

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“Nuclear energy is not a viable alternative to oil dependency.”

 By Tara Steinmetz – July 21 2010

Congress has debated policy that would curb greenhouse gas emissions to stave off the worst climate change. Unfortunately, nuclear power is too often touted as one of those clean, viable energy alternatives, and as a solution to global warming. But the facts show the opposite. First, there’s the reality that nuclear energy is not viable without massive taxpayer and ratepayer subsidies. In Washington, Congress is pushing an energy bill that would allow an additional $54 billion in loan guarantees for nuclear power, among myriad other incentives.

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“Copenhagen COP analysis”

by Alan Burns

The probable outcome of Copenhagen will be half-measures trying to satisfy everyone but falling sharply short of what is needed to avoid a climate catastrophe. Copenhagen may only be a start rather than the solution needed. How we live on a changed planet will be the next challenge.


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