There may be valid reasons to thin forests -- such as restoration of forest structure or health, wildlife enhancement or public safety -- but increased carbon sequestration is not one of them, scientists say.
LAGOS, Nigeria, Dec 15, 2011 (IPS) - The women of Makoko, a low-lying slum close to the Lagos Lagoon along Nigeria’s Atlantic coast, always sleep with one eye open. Many live in fear that when they go to sleep at night they will wake to flooded homes and business.
No matter how bad coal might be for the planet, the conventional wisdom is that there is so much of it underground that the world’s leading fuel for electricity will continue to dominate the energy scene unless global action is taken on climate change.
The White House said yesterday that the US is on track to double its renewable energy generating capacity – as well as its renewable energy manufacturing capacity – by 2012.
Releasing a new report summing up progress under the Recovery Act, Vice President Joe Biden predicted that the cost of solar power would be cut in half by 2015, putting it “on par” with the cost of retail electricity from the grid.
The polar region -- which includes the Arctic Ocean and parts of Alaska,
Canada, Denmark, Finland, Russia, Norway and Sweden -- has experienced
unpredictable climatic changes over the last few years. As a result, polar
bears and their natural habitat are seriously threatened.
"The climate changes seem to be caused partly by natural factors about which
we can do nothing, such as anomalous solar activity," said Vyacheslav V.
Pankov, director for the Guild of Russian Ecologists. The guild was created to
unite Russian ecologists and experts on the environment.
"But the environmental effects of human activities -- pollution, destruction of
natural migration routes, a reduction of food sources -- create additional
problems for the conservation of biodiversity," he added.
The renewable energy (RE) and energy efficiency (EE) industries generated more than 9 million jobs, more than $1 trillion in revenue, and nearly $160 billion in federal, state, and local tax revenue in 2007.
Solar energy is a major economic driver for the United States, creating green jobs and vigorous revenue growth for participating companies. Despite a downturn in the U.S. economy, the American solar industry posted spectacular growth numbers in solar deployment during 2009. Photovoltaic (PV) installations increased 40 percent from 2008 to 2009. ASES predicts a 50 to 100 percent increase in solar deployment in 2010.
Great article in The Guardian on the relationship between protection of nature to economic and cultural survival. Read the whole article here and see more links below the excerpt.
Britain and other countries face a collapse of their economies and loss of culture if they do not protect the environment better, the world's leading champion of nature has warned."What we are seeing today is a total disaster," said Ahmed Djoghlaf, the secretary-general of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity.
"No country has met its targets to protect nature. We are losing biodiversity at an unprecedented rate. If current levels [of destruction] go on we will reach a tipping point very soon. The future of the planet now depends on governments taking action in the next few years.
"Industrialisation, population growth, the spread of cities and farms and climate change are all now threatening the fundamentals of life itself, said Djoghlaf, in London before a key UN meeting where governments are expected to sign up to a more ambitious agreement to protect nature.
Ford Motor Company’s new PC Power Management program is expected to save the automaker $1.2 million and reduce its carbon dioxide emissions by 16,000 to 25,000 metric tons annually.
Under the program, the power settings on Windows laptops and desktop computers will be centrally controlled to reduce energy waste and optimize software updates. In addition, by shutting down its computer systems when not in use, especially overnight and on weekends, it will further reduce energy use, says Ford.