Author Topic: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5  (Read 13265 times)

RichCantante

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #150 on: October 13, 2018, 11:11:18 AM »
I haven't finished reading this thread, but I will. In the meantime, wanted to say to JoshuaSpodek, I applaud your POV and look forward to listening to your podcast.

Meowkins

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #151 on: October 13, 2018, 11:16:10 AM »

(reading backwards)

@JoshuaSpodek Your podcast sounds so cool!

@maizeman You seem really informed on this topic. Without being too nosy, is this something you focus on professionally or a passion?

maizeman

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #152 on: October 13, 2018, 11:23:17 AM »

(reading backwards)

@JoshuaSpodek Your podcast sounds so cool!

@maizeman You seem really informed on this topic. Without being too nosy, is this something you focus on professionally or a passion?

It probably depends on how we define "this topic" and how broadly, but I guess the safest answer is that part of what we're discussing on this thread been a adult-life-long area of interest that these days is sometimes peripherally relevant to what I do for a living.

RichCantante

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #153 on: October 13, 2018, 01:33:15 PM »
https://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2017/jul/10/100-fossil-fuel-companies-investors-responsible-71-global-emissions-cdp-study-climate-change

OK look at the list:

Top 100 producers and their cumulative greenhouse gas emissions from 1988-2015
Count   Company   Percentage of global industrial greenhouse gas emissions
1   China (Coal)   14.32%
2   Saudi Arabian Oil Company (Aramco)   4.50%
3   Gazprom OAO   3.91%
4   National Iranian Oil Co   2.28%
5   ExxonMobil Corp   1.98%
6   Coal India   1.87%
7   Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex)   1.87%
8   Russia (Coal)   1.86%
9   Royal Dutch Shell PLC   1.67%
10   China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC)   1.56%
11   BP PLC   1.53%
12   Chevron Corp   1.31%
13   Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA)   1.23%
14   Abu Dhabi National Oil Co   1.20%
15   Poland Coal   1.16%
16   Peabody Energy Corp   1.15%
17   Sonatrach SPA   1.00%
18   Kuwait Petroleum Corp   1.00%
19   Total SA   0.95%
20   BHP Billiton Ltd   0.91%
21   ConocoPhillips   0.91%
22   Petroleo Brasileiro SA (Petrobras)   0.77%
23   Lukoil OAO   0.75%
24   Rio Tinto   0.75%
25   Nigerian National Petroleum Corp   0.72%
26   Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Petronas)   0.69%
27   Rosneft OAO   0.65%
28   Arch Coal Inc   0.63%
29   Iraq National Oil Co   0.60%
30   Eni SPA   0.59%
31   Anglo American   0.59%
32   Surgutneftegas OAO   0.57%
33   Alpha Natural Resources Inc   0.54%
34   Qatar Petroleum Corp   0.54%
35   PT Pertamina   0.54%
36   Kazakhstan Coal   0.53%
37   Statoil ASA   0.52%
38   National Oil Corporation of Libya   0.50%
39   Consol Energy Inc   0.50%
40   Ukraine Coal   0.49%
41   RWE AG   0.47%
42   Oil & Natural Gas Corp Ltd   0.40%
43   Glencore PLC   0.38%
44   TurkmenGaz   0.36%
45   Sasol Ltd   0.35%
46   Repsol SA   0.33%
47   Anadarko Petroleum Corp   0.33%
48   Egyptian General Petroleum Corp   0.31%
49   Petroleum Development Oman LLC   0.31%
50   Czech Republic Coal   0.30%
51   China Petrochemical Corp (Sinopec)   0.29%
52   China National Offshore Oil Corp Ltd (CNOOC)   0.28%
53   Ecopetrol SA   0.27%
54   Singareni Collieries Company   0.27%
55   Occidental Petroleum Corp   0.26%
56   Sonangol EP   0.26%
57   Tatneft OAO   0.23%
58   North Korea Coal   0.23%
59   Bumi Resources   0.23%
60   Suncor Energy Inc   0.22%
61   Petoro AS   0.21%
62   Devon Energy Corp   0.20%
63   Natural Resource Partners LP   0.19%
64   Marathon Oil Corp   0.19%
65   Vistra Energy   0.19%
66   Encana Corp   0.18%
67   Canadian Natural Resources Ltd   0.17%
68   Hess Corp   0.16%
69   Exxaro Resources Ltd   0.16%
70   YPF SA   0.15%
71   Apache Corp   0.15%
72   Murray Coal   0.15%
73   Alliance Resource Partners LP   0.15%
74   Syrian Petroleum Co   0.15%
75   Novatek OAO   0.14%
76   NACCO Industries Inc   0.13%
77   KazMunayGas   0.13%
78   Adaro Energy PT   0.13%
79   Petroleos del Ecuador   0.12%
80   Inpex Corp   0.12%
81   Kiewit Mining Group   0.12%
82   AP Moller (Maersk)   0.11%
83   Banpu Public Co Ltd   0.11%
84   EOG Resources Inc   0.11%
85   Husky Energy Inc   0.11%
86   Kideco Jaya Agung PT   0.10%
87   Bahrain Petroleum Co (BAPCO)   0.10%
88   Westmoreland Coal Co   0.10%
89   Cloud Peak Energy Inc   0.10%
90   Chesapeake Energy Corp   0.10%
91   Drummond Co   0.09%
92   Teck Resources Ltd   0.09%
93   Turkmennebit   0.07%
94   OMV AG   0.06%
95   Noble Energy Inc   0.06%
96   Murphy Oil Corp   0.06%
97   Berau Coal Energy Tbk PT   0.06%
98   Bukit Asam (Persero) Tbk PT   0.05%
99   Indika Energy Tbk PT   0.04%
100   Southwestern Energy Co   0.04%

While it's valid to say that focusing on individuals rather than corporations is perhaps a shell game in dealing with climate change, is the problem really "neoliberalism" when the vast majority of these carbon-producers listed above are oil companies? Doesn't that make our task relatively simple? Stop driving ICE cars (or cars in general) now!

Kris

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #154 on: October 13, 2018, 01:45:08 PM »
https://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2017/jul/10/100-fossil-fuel-companies-investors-responsible-71-global-emissions-cdp-study-climate-change

OK look at the list:

Top 100 producers and their cumulative greenhouse gas emissions from 1988-2015
Count   Company   Percentage of global industrial greenhouse gas emissions
1   China (Coal)   14.32%
2   Saudi Arabian Oil Company (Aramco)   4.50%
3   Gazprom OAO   3.91%
4   National Iranian Oil Co   2.28%
5   ExxonMobil Corp   1.98%
6   Coal India   1.87%
7   Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex)   1.87%
8   Russia (Coal)   1.86%
9   Royal Dutch Shell PLC   1.67%
10   China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC)   1.56%
11   BP PLC   1.53%
12   Chevron Corp   1.31%
13   Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA)   1.23%
14   Abu Dhabi National Oil Co   1.20%
15   Poland Coal   1.16%
16   Peabody Energy Corp   1.15%
17   Sonatrach SPA   1.00%
18   Kuwait Petroleum Corp   1.00%
19   Total SA   0.95%
20   BHP Billiton Ltd   0.91%
21   ConocoPhillips   0.91%
22   Petroleo Brasileiro SA (Petrobras)   0.77%
23   Lukoil OAO   0.75%
24   Rio Tinto   0.75%
25   Nigerian National Petroleum Corp   0.72%
26   Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Petronas)   0.69%
27   Rosneft OAO   0.65%
28   Arch Coal Inc   0.63%
29   Iraq National Oil Co   0.60%
30   Eni SPA   0.59%
31   Anglo American   0.59%
32   Surgutneftegas OAO   0.57%
33   Alpha Natural Resources Inc   0.54%
34   Qatar Petroleum Corp   0.54%
35   PT Pertamina   0.54%
36   Kazakhstan Coal   0.53%
37   Statoil ASA   0.52%
38   National Oil Corporation of Libya   0.50%
39   Consol Energy Inc   0.50%
40   Ukraine Coal   0.49%
41   RWE AG   0.47%
42   Oil & Natural Gas Corp Ltd   0.40%
43   Glencore PLC   0.38%
44   TurkmenGaz   0.36%
45   Sasol Ltd   0.35%
46   Repsol SA   0.33%
47   Anadarko Petroleum Corp   0.33%
48   Egyptian General Petroleum Corp   0.31%
49   Petroleum Development Oman LLC   0.31%
50   Czech Republic Coal   0.30%
51   China Petrochemical Corp (Sinopec)   0.29%
52   China National Offshore Oil Corp Ltd (CNOOC)   0.28%
53   Ecopetrol SA   0.27%
54   Singareni Collieries Company   0.27%
55   Occidental Petroleum Corp   0.26%
56   Sonangol EP   0.26%
57   Tatneft OAO   0.23%
58   North Korea Coal   0.23%
59   Bumi Resources   0.23%
60   Suncor Energy Inc   0.22%
61   Petoro AS   0.21%
62   Devon Energy Corp   0.20%
63   Natural Resource Partners LP   0.19%
64   Marathon Oil Corp   0.19%
65   Vistra Energy   0.19%
66   Encana Corp   0.18%
67   Canadian Natural Resources Ltd   0.17%
68   Hess Corp   0.16%
69   Exxaro Resources Ltd   0.16%
70   YPF SA   0.15%
71   Apache Corp   0.15%
72   Murray Coal   0.15%
73   Alliance Resource Partners LP   0.15%
74   Syrian Petroleum Co   0.15%
75   Novatek OAO   0.14%
76   NACCO Industries Inc   0.13%
77   KazMunayGas   0.13%
78   Adaro Energy PT   0.13%
79   Petroleos del Ecuador   0.12%
80   Inpex Corp   0.12%
81   Kiewit Mining Group   0.12%
82   AP Moller (Maersk)   0.11%
83   Banpu Public Co Ltd   0.11%
84   EOG Resources Inc   0.11%
85   Husky Energy Inc   0.11%
86   Kideco Jaya Agung PT   0.10%
87   Bahrain Petroleum Co (BAPCO)   0.10%
88   Westmoreland Coal Co   0.10%
89   Cloud Peak Energy Inc   0.10%
90   Chesapeake Energy Corp   0.10%
91   Drummond Co   0.09%
92   Teck Resources Ltd   0.09%
93   Turkmennebit   0.07%
94   OMV AG   0.06%
95   Noble Energy Inc   0.06%
96   Murphy Oil Corp   0.06%
97   Berau Coal Energy Tbk PT   0.06%
98   Bukit Asam (Persero) Tbk PT   0.05%
99   Indika Energy Tbk PT   0.04%
100   Southwestern Energy Co   0.04%

While it's valid to say that focusing on individuals rather than corporations is perhaps a shell game in dealing with climate change, is the problem really "neoliberalism" when the vast majority of these carbon-producers listed above are oil companies? Doesn't that make our task relatively simple? Stop driving ICE cars (or cars in general) now!

Yes, because the corporate capitalist model within neoliberalism means that those companies are subsidized by the government, and also that our politicians who are also corporatists will not enact regilations to push us away from dependence on fossil fuels to the speed and degree that we need it to happen.

RichCantante

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #155 on: October 13, 2018, 02:02:32 PM »
I don't depend on the government to make me (personally) rich or save the planet. I drive less. I'm a contrarian and have built businesses in fields that most people think you cannot make money doing. I have raised a family on one tiny car, with kids who bike, bus and walk everywhere. I mainly bike and public transit everywhere. Don't grow my own food but do grow my own eggs. Can't get down with the idea that I shouldn't have pets -- pets are my friends. Pets can also consume household food waste.

So many fascinating links in this thread. I haven't finished reading it but in another thread The Moneyless Manifesto was posted. It's an imperfect solution,  as are all, but I love that he points out that "ethical consumerism," while noble, is still problematic -- it's still consumerism.

http://www.moneylessmanifesto.org

This is a tricky problem. None of us are getting out of it alive, but then that's how life works anyway. In the 70s we were very concerned about saving energy, turning off lights, smaller cars, public transport. Then in the 80s we thought AIDS, killer bees and the Cold War would end us. In school they used to show us films about these things and believe me it was depressing. Now no one worries about AIDS, killer bees and the Cold War, at least not in comparison to climate change.

Riding my bike gives me joy, makes me feel like a badass, means one less car on the road, saves me a shit ton of money, says FU to Exxon, and makes me sexy as hell. We need to get cars off the road, and already we see cultural change around driving among young people. It's happening.

Whatever any of us do, it should be something, and I'm glad this thread collects a lot of useful options in one place.

JoshuaSpodek

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #156 on: October 13, 2018, 08:15:42 PM »
Thank you @RichCantante and @Meowkins. I'm working on bringing more influential guests. This week I spoke to a Nobel Peace Prize honoree and just got back from an Olympic training center, so I hope to record with them soon. They're enthusiastic. I believe hearing that people's role models are acting (not just talking or debating) will influence people's behavior more than most things.

The more people change, the more politicians will realize that they will vote as they act. So far politicians see that voters prefer SUVs and flying.

Speaking of taxes, as others did, I suggest calling it more accurately a pollution tax or externality tax, not a carbon tax. The issue isn't that people are using carbon, methane, etc but they they are affecting a shared resource and imposing costs on others.

Most people agree that a role of government is to regulate behavior that hurts others. That is, you can punch empty air in your house all you want, but if you punch someone in the nose, nearly everyone agrees on regulating that behavior.

maizeman

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #157 on: October 13, 2018, 08:24:06 PM »
Speaking of taxes, as others did, I suggest calling it more accurately a pollution tax or externality tax, not a carbon tax. The issue isn't that people are using carbon, methane, etc but they they are affecting a shared resource and imposing costs on others.

Most people agree that a role of government is to regulate behavior that hurts others. That is, you can punch empty air in your house all you want, but if you punch someone in the nose, nearly everyone agrees on regulating that behavior.

I agree with the desirability of explaining why the tax is being imposed. My concern would be that calling a "pollution tax" or "externality tax" implies taxes on a much wider set of activities than a carbon tax. So in trying to get such a tax adopted with one of those names we'd end up spending a lot of time we could be explaining the concept of externalities and the role of government in regulating them instead playing defense against people who'd assume it was a tax on all externalities or all pollution of any sort and have rapidly come up with ridiculous edge case examples of each of those.

RichCantante

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #158 on: October 14, 2018, 09:51:56 AM »
I was thinking all yesterday on this topic. My mind is a bit blown that the people on MMM forum -- people who are capable of completely reengineering their financial lives with the additional motivation that doing so will be environmentally advantageous and much better than the rat race they were raised to believe in -- would be so fatalistic about climate change.

It would be interesting to survey this population -- is it the case that for all MMM's advice about not driving cars, in fact the bicycle commuting percentage of this readership is no better than in the general population? Has everyone simply realized (as I did long ago -- but not saying I'm better, I still own a ICE car) that you don't have to have a new car, or two cars, but not gone all the way down the rabbit hole to rejecting cars completely?

This thread produced the usual debates about possible culprits for climate change. Was I wrong, I thought last night? Is transportation and energy really *not* the problem? Will the world cool down for my 7 children (just kidding, I only have 1.5) if I just start drinking manufactured almond milk packaged in a plastic-infused cube and fake chicken patties from Trader Joe's?

I don't think so. Every measure I see shows transportation as the largest single cause.

https://www.ucsusa.org/clean-vehicles/car-emissions-and-global-warming#.W8NkKy-ZPBU

https://www.treehugger.com/climate-change/five-radical-steps-we-can-take-fight-climate-change.html

Nothing happens in government if we don't embody it ourselves first. Civil rights happened because of citizen actions setting it in motion. On top of all that, public transportation like beautiful trains and ferries, bikes, ride share... it's all BETTER than driving. The golden age of driving is over. Autonomous pods are not going to save us from ourselves!

BTW @JoshuaSpodek really enjoyed your podcast about traveling the world without flying! Absolutely eye-opening!




Hirondelle

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #159 on: October 14, 2018, 10:54:34 AM »
@RichCantante I think it really depends on what sources you check and what population you're in. This link provides some information specific to my country and this lady has calculated that the stuff we buy and meat consumption are the largest factors. Now we drive a lot less compared to the folks in the USA, but we also eat less meat so I can't imagine the difference will flip around completely. She argues the average American uses 4.8 earths (Dutch folks use 3.6), but I can't find the 'biggest impact'-list like it's there for the Dutch situation. The article (and the book as well) also provides a lot of information about how hard it is to see our impact as much of it is hidden in the production process. E.g. Electric cars might be less pollution while used, due to their production process they're only marginally better than regular cars (the more they're driven the bigger the difference).

The impact you cause really depends on the person. When I calculate my personal impact over 50% is caused by air travel as my other 'big things' (car, meat consumption, stuff I buy) are 0 or close to 0. For my mom it would be completely different as she barely flies, but eats tons of meat, buys a lot more stuff and uses a car regularly.

The problem with cars/transportation is that it's hard to make a big change quickly. It's a tough change to move within biking or walking distance to your work OR get a job closer to home, not something you do overnight. Electic cars are also far from perfect (still polluting during production process) and rather expensive for lower income folks. On the other hand, vacationing can be done close to home reducing the number of flights and meat consumption can painlessly be reduced overnight. These are 'easy' changes that people can make NOW, while worker towards other sustainable solutions in the meantime.

@JoshuaSpodek just wanted to say I really enjoy your contributions! Will have a look at your Podcast later. Some of the topics certainly sound inspiring!

RichCantante

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #160 on: October 14, 2018, 11:33:40 AM »
Thanks @Hirondelle for those links, also very interesting! Cars and driving very important contributors according to that piece!

Yeah, for the reasons you state, I can't find myself getting too excited about electric cars or even electric bikes, though I've looked into it. I was in a bike store and saw this ginormous batteries built into the bike frame and just thought, "this is an improvement?" That said, I've been known to change my opinion so who knows. Currently am most fascinated by public transit, bikes, human-generated kinetic energy capture and even animal-powered vehicles. This from someone who loved cars, has rebuilt engines, loves her stick shift, etc.

Also to go back to the causes question, I think it's cars and transport in America. I also worry that the whole debating of causes itself leads to inaction. If you study social change (it's a field of marketing, among other things), it usually has to be crystallized into a single action -- the anti-smoking movement being a hugely effective one. Similar to what the poster above was saying about not littering in Texas.

Maybe that then goes to the heart of what @JoshuaSpodek is saying which is the actions of leaders change things, not reasons or debating. As MMM has so elegantly illustrated on this website.
« Last Edit: October 14, 2018, 11:43:01 AM by RichCantante »

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #161 on: October 14, 2018, 11:33:54 AM »
I was thinking all yesterday on this topic. My mind is a bit blown that the people on MMM forum -- people who are capable of completely reengineering their financial lives with the additional motivation that doing so will be environmentally advantageous and much better than the rat race they were raised to believe in -- would be so fatalistic about climate change.

It would be interesting to survey this population -- is it the case that for all MMM's advice about not driving cars, in fact the bicycle commuting percentage of this readership is no better than in the general population? Has everyone simply realized (as I did long ago -- but not saying I'm better, I still own a ICE car) that you don't have to have a new car, or two cars, but not gone all the way down the rabbit hole to rejecting cars completely?


There is a sizeable number of people on this forum who hold to the MMM financial philosophy and worry about the future environment their kids will live in, but still fly their family trans-ocean more than a dozen times in one year for holidays, or fly most weeks on their self-employed business, or regard the annual trans-ocean trip to visit family as non-negotiable.  They might not say so upfront in subject matter threads but the pattern is clear if you start reading case studies and journals.


And it's a significant reason why I'm depressed about climate change: if all the lovely people here are only changing their spending habits to the extent that it is personally advantageous and not inconvenient, what chance of voluntary change in the population at large?

maizeman

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #162 on: October 14, 2018, 11:38:13 AM »
I was thinking all yesterday on this topic. My mind is a bit blown that the people on MMM forum -- people who are capable of completely reengineering their financial lives with the additional motivation that doing so will be environmentally advantageous and much better than the rat race they were raised to believe in -- would be so fatalistic about climate change.

FIRE is about making radical changes within your personal locus of control. Avoiding climate change requires radical collective/societal action.

I cannot think of an inherent reason to believe a group of people who are convinced they they, as individuals, are able to reshape their own lives would be more likely than the generally public to think that our whole civilization can work together change course in the face of slow building but existential threats like climate change.

But I'd be interested to know your reasoning for thinking the two would indeed be predictive of each other.

RichCantante

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #163 on: October 14, 2018, 11:48:59 AM »
The human species is a hierarchical pack animal (not technical terms) similar to ants, termites, bees... We think we're totally independent individuals but we copy each other madly. This website is a perfect example, everyone copying the leader, MMM, and disciples. All "radical change" (for good or bad) among humans starts with the behaviors of very small groups. Hence my belief that a small group of people capable of making the same set of radical changes in their own lives is capable of making further changes when it proves optimal.

maizeman

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #164 on: October 14, 2018, 12:08:52 PM »
I disagree with the premise, but if you start out with a view of the world that setting an example is likely to ripple out into the whole of society changing their behavior,* I can certainly understand how you would reach the conclusions that you have. Thanks for explaining!

*Rather than having to come up with effective ways to either convince the average person to change their behavior or convince governments to impose rules that force people to change their behavior.

gaja

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #165 on: October 14, 2018, 12:40:53 PM »
I'm getting increasingly tired of theoretical numbers, big reports, life cost analysis, and grand solutions. This is not rocket science. We know what to do, and we have known it for a very long time. Starving polar bears and horror stories about sea level change won't get people to act, and neither will the perfect LCA. Show people how they can make positive changes in their life, and very soon you will get the snowball rolling.

I don't give a fuck why people live in an environmentally friendly way, I only care about end results. It has been showed several times that it is changes in behaviour that drive changes in opinion, not the other way around. We see it with EV drivers in Norway: they buy their Tesla due to economic insentives, but after getting the car they think of themselves as environmentally friendly, and start making other smart choices to make their behaviour fit with how they view themselves: installing solar panels, saving energy at home, and we see some stats that look like they are flying less and biking more.

Stop talking about CO2-e, veganism, and climate footprint, and start talking about:
-how we can stop throwing away so much food. Our parents and grandparents told us not to waste food, but here we are feeding our animals human food instead of letting them graze. Throwing away 40% of the food the farmers work had to produce is downright disgraceful. We need to eat our vegetables, and the leftovers.
-how healthy and nice it is to use a bicycle instead of driving
-how much easier life is when the kids can walk or bike to school and activities, instead of being driven all the time
-how easy and comfortable electric cars are to use, and how much money you can save by charging them at home instead of going to the petrol station
-how much better it is to buy high quality clothes from people who know how to make them, rather than companies who produce bad quality with slave labour
-how uncomfortable and annoying mass tourism is, and how much fun you can have vacationing in your neighbourhood.
-how much time we waste travelling to work meetings, when so much could be done via modern technology. In fact; working from home not only saves time for the employer; a lot of people are more efficient when they are not disturbed by water cooler talk and coffee breaks.
-how simple life becomes when you live in a smaller house; less space to clean, less space to heat and take care of.

And we need to start making fun of the people who make wasteful choices, while bragging about those who make good choices. It needs to become embarrassing to fly everywhere, while those who post photos from their inter-rail across Europe (or roadtrips by electric car in the US) should get more positive attention.

TLDR: 90 % of what we need to do to reduce our CO2 emissions is old fashioned common sense. Show people how to make the right choices, instead of nagging about why they should. And build communities (online or RL) where polluting is something to be ashamed of.

bacchi

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #166 on: October 14, 2018, 01:47:35 PM »
This carbon calculator, https://coolclimate.berkeley.edu/calculator, is more granular than others I've used.

Getting down to a sustainable per capita number is difficult. It essentially means no travel and a tiny house and not buying anything. That's if we have economic justice -- if all 7.5B were raised to the same standards as developed countries. This is where total world population matters.*

The good news, for the planet, is that the very poor don't produce many pollutants. Sure, they're burning forests for cooking and ag but it's still a pittance compared to internal combustion engines and coal (coal is the worst(1)).

This is, indeed, where regulations come in. We need to shut down coal power plants and raise CAFE to make gas engines more efficient (and market-force all commuter cars to be solar-powered electric vehicles), and tax the shit out of fuel to reflect its true cost (as mentioned above, it's really a pollution or externality tax -- but maybe for marketing we call it a "road and other maintenance tax").




* "It reports that the goal is likely to be met if cumulative emissions (including the 535 GtC emitted by the end of 2013) do not exceeed 1 trillion tonnes of carbon (PgC)." --> 465 Gt left to produce /40 years/7.5B = 1.55 tons/year/per person
(1) https://www.co2.earth/global-co2-emissions

Malaysia41

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #167 on: October 14, 2018, 02:27:03 PM »
I was thinking all yesterday on this topic. My mind is a bit blown that the people on MMM forum -- people who are capable of completely reengineering their financial lives with the additional motivation that doing so will be environmentally advantageous and much better than the rat race they were raised to believe in -- would be so fatalistic about climate change.

It would be interesting to survey this population -- is it the case that for all MMM's advice about not driving cars, in fact the bicycle commuting percentage of this readership is no better than in the general population? Has everyone simply realized (as I did long ago -- but not saying I'm better, I still own a ICE car) that you don't have to have a new car, or two cars, but not gone all the way down the rabbit hole to rejecting cars completely?


There is a sizeable number of people on this forum who hold to the MMM financial philosophy and worry about the future environment their kids will live in, but still fly their family trans-ocean more than a dozen times in one year for holidays, or fly most weeks on their self-employed business, or regard the annual trans-ocean trip to visit family as non-negotiable.  They might not say so upfront in subject matter threads but the pattern is clear if you start reading case studies and journals.


And it's a significant reason why I'm depressed about climate change: if all the lovely people here are only changing their spending habits to the extent that it is personally advantageous and not inconvenient, what chance of voluntary change in the population at large?

Yep.  I bike everywhere, eat a plant based diet, and take the train to cities around Europe. But every 12-18 months I fly from Italy to the states and back. I self-impose carbon taxes at $50+ a ton CO2, but even as I see that patreon donation auto-pay Earthling Ed every month, I know this 'tax' is bullshit.

We've made massive changes to our daily habits compared to how we lived 10 years ago. But yeah. That international flight and self-imposed carbon taxes - it's my hypocrisy. 100%.
« Last Edit: October 14, 2018, 02:35:33 PM by Malaysia41 »

A mom

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #168 on: October 14, 2018, 05:15:38 PM »
The human species is a hierarchical pack animal (not technical terms) similar to ants, termites, bees... We think we're totally independent individuals but we copy each other madly. This website is a perfect example, everyone copying the leader, MMM, and disciples. All "radical change" (for good or bad) among humans starts with the behaviors of very small groups. Hence my belief that a small group of people capable of making the same set of radical changes in their own lives is capable of making further changes when it proves optimal.

Yes. This. This. This.

former player

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #169 on: October 14, 2018, 06:28:02 PM »
I wasn't actually thinking of you, Malaysia41: there are others who are considerably worse.  Their school age children have probably already flown more miles than I have in my lifetime - I didn't get on a plane until I was 24 and due to environmental concerns have had exactly one 1 hour of flying in the last 20 years, when due to flooding of road and rail (ironic, huh) it was my only way to get to a 100th birthday party.  And I eat meat only once a year at Christmas dinner, although there is locally caught fish and shellfish in my diet.  I do drive a couple of thousand miles a year in my small car, so there's that, I suppose.  There are a lot of people like me quietly leading modest lives for limited financial and environmental cost.  But there are far too many who either don't care at all or care only to the extent that it doesn't get in the way of what they want to do.  Would I like to see more of the world?  Sure.  Could I afford it?  Yes, I have the time and money to do a round the world trip every year for the rest of my life.  But I don't need to and won't do it.

Kyle Schuant

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #170 on: October 14, 2018, 09:42:03 PM »
Is transportation and energy really *not* the problem? [...]

I don't think so. Every measure I see shows transportation as the largest single cause.

You get some varying figures, but it's a categorisation problem. For example, if we here in temperate Victoria have mangoes from tropical Queensland in our winter, are the emissions due to their transport counted as "transport" or as "agriculture"?

I don't worry much about that. I'm not writing papers about statistics or determining government policy. I do what I can do. Compared to the typical Western middle-class lifestyle, in rough order of impact (compared to the average; this may or may not be any individual's wasteful areas) the changes would be,

1. Don't fly in aircraft at all.
2. Use cool drinks and fans not airconditioning, jumpers and hot drinks not heating, hang washing out to dry, change to CFLs/LEDs, and pull plugs out on appliances not in use
3. Bye-bye cars: for a journey under 5km, walk. Under 15km, bike. Over that, public transport.
4. Consume mainly seasonal and local fresh fruit and vegies, grains and legumes, avoid processed containerised food, and reduce meat consumption to under 12kg/year (0.25kg/week)
5. For consumer goods, borrow rather than buy, secondhand rather than new
6. Buy electrical power from other sources preferring in order: wind, geothermal, solar, hydroelectric, landfill gas or natural gas, waste burning, bagasse. Don't even think about nuclear or coal.
7. If available, use coppiced wood for heating/cooking, otherwise use that wind powered electricity, or if that's not available, use natural gas

All these changes will improve your financial position as you're spending less time. They'll improve your physical health as you eat better food and move your body more. So even if you don't think climate change is an issue (or if you're well-off enough to avoid its effects by moving to the right place and turning on the AC) they're all good things to do. Not everyone can do all of these things, but almost everyone can do some of them.

And yes, Rich, I suspect the "ditch the car and cycle" is the least popular and least-tried of MMM's advice.


Quote from: former player
And it's a significant reason why I'm depressed about climate change: if all the lovely people here are only changing their spending habits to the extent that it is personally advantageous and not inconvenient, what chance of voluntary change in the population at large?

I've lost it now, but Rebecca Solnik had a wonderful essay on "revolution by increments," where she said something like, Madame Speaker, Bob and his boyfriend... did those words make you jump? Probably not - but your reaction in 1985 might have been different, and certainly would have been in 1955. The flatness of their register shows the change that has happened in the last generation. And this is how genuine social change happens, small changes add up over time and become big change.

For example, here in Australia it used to be only crazy hippies who had solar panels, now they're everywhere. Or consider smoking: when I was in the army in the early 90s, if you didn't smoke you were considered a homosexual, and being homosexual was very, very bad. Now smoking is considered low-class and crass, the habit of homeless and lifelong unemployed, and now not only nobody cares if you're homosexual, they can get married, too. So change does happen, not overnight but by increments.

As well, fossil fuels are running short. So even if burning coal gave us vitamin C, we'd eventually have to give up on it anyway, it just becomes too much of a hassle compared to other ways of doing things. So change will actually happen. Now, whether change happens quickly enough to avoid the nastier possibilities of climate change is another question. But change will happen, because it has to. That doesn't mean we can't hurry it along, of course. Some bloke had to be the first one to stop smoking and say "yeah, so I'm a poofter, so what?" and make the radical seem ordinary.


http://rebeccasolnit.net/essay/hope-is-a​n-embrace-of-the-unknown​-rebecca-solnit-on-living-in-dark-times/
« Last Edit: October 14, 2018, 09:48:08 PM by Kyle Schuant »

RichCantante

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #171 on: October 14, 2018, 10:59:38 PM »
Just to show I too am a hypocrite I travelled across an ocean for the first time in my adult life by airplane this year (but I did look into getting there by boat -- also, it was for work, not that that makes it better). But to the point about culture change, it was only in the last year that I even *thought* about airplane travel as a category of waste or even CO2 emission. I suspect a lot of people are like that. Just like car=freedom, maybe plane=vacation to most of us.

Going back to the great links, the granular CO2 tracker site from UC Berkeley mentioned above (https://coolclimate.berkeley.edu/calculator) is excellent because it shows what's going on in your area. In fact it comes to some surprising results around dense urban areas, and also shows huge variation due to income. Running through it I can boast that it said we were 55% better than most households in our zip code with our income (probably thanks to having the one car and not driving it much). But there was much we could do to reduce it, and yes, reducing meat eating was on the list. Overall, transportation was the biggest greenhouse gas contributor in my part of the US. However, air travel was way less than auto travel as a contributor in my own family. Eliminating all car travel according to this tracker would eliminate the vast majority of our CO2 emission as a family of four, even with the air travel.

This particular tracker has an API that makes me wonder if someone could create apps that would help disseminate this info. Like Dumb Ways To Die, which was a popular game that was created in order to reduce train deaths.

Another useful link I found from the Union of Concerned Scientists: https://www.ucsusa.org/clean-vehicles. This goal of theirs of cutting US oil in half is a few years old. I'm afraid to ask if any progress has been made...

This was good too: Seven Things You Should Know About the IPCC 1.5°C Special Report and its Policy Implications
https://blog.ucsusa.org/rachel-cleetus/seven-things-ipcc2018

"Here in the United States, it is a time of deep concern with the Trump administration rolling back every national climate policy, stepping away from the Paris Agreement, and working on every front to undermine international cooperation. It’s going to be up to states, cities, tribal communities, faith leaders, labor and environmental justice leaders, youth groups—ordinary Americans from all walks of life—to pick up the baton and do our part to contribute to global efforts to limit climate change."

BookLoverL

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #172 on: October 15, 2018, 01:44:18 AM »
Climate change, overpopulation, and resource depletion are all problems that will eventually combine to bring about the end of civilisation as we know it (especially for younger people such as myself who can't remember, say, a life before computers). Ideally, the whole world would be putting into place some kind of plan for adaptation, but, being realistic, we are never going to get the entire world or even the whole of a single country to line up on this. So what's left is taking steps to adapt as individuals and communities.

Even if we can't single-handedly stop climate change by giving up flying, if your personal lifestyle is sustainable, that's still better for you because you'll have made the changes you needed to make before any sort of crisis hits, which means that by the time a crisis does come, you'll be able to cope with it far better than people who are still reliant on their planes, SUVs, and high-powered air-con/heating systems. I gave up flying myself as soon as I realised the severity of the situation.

Individually:
-try and buy more local and seasonal food, including growing it yourself in a sustainable way (not the way that depletes the topsoil, preferably)
-avoid flying
-take public transport for long journeys whenever possible
-don't drive to anywhere that you could walk to in half an hour
-if it's safe to cycle in your area, don't drive to anywhere you could cycle to in half an hour
-those last two things could be stretched to up to an hour's journey length for someone who is fitter/less busy
-if a journey would require a car, consider whether it's even necessary for you to make it
-avoid buying plastic tat, unless it's made out of recycled stuff
-try and learn older, more sustainable methods of doing everyday tasks, even if you don't use them every day at the moment
-encourage people in your community who you have influence with to also take action

Politically, if we could get enough politicians to actually listen, here are some ideas I would go for:
-tax on using new non-sustainable raw materials
-tax on pollution (of any kind, not just carbon)
-construction of better public transport systems and cycle routes (where by better, I mean more frequent and going to more small places, not just a faster way of going between places that are already well served *cough*HS2*cough*)
-no child benefit beyond the first 2 kids
-maybe even a 2-child policy as similar to the one-child policy that China had, though this is harsher
-free contraception and good quality sex ed for everyone
-not trying to extend the life of every single diseased person quite so hard when that means keeping them on life support in a hospital bed for years at a time, still supplying with nutrients etc, when actually they have basically no quality of life left any more (this one is probably also controversial, and I should note that I'm not advocating stopping care for things that could be fixed quickly)
-more effort to reduce obesity (often obese people could be eating twice as much per day as people in healthy BMI range)
-larger and better designated nature reserves where human interference is forbidden, INCLUDING marine nature reserves, to allow natural populations of creatures to have a space to recover
-I could probably think of more stuff here, maybe later

Regarding overpopulation, the only humane way I can see of reducing the population is for everyone to have 2 or less children, which is at or below replacement rate. (My concern for overpopulation is global, including here in the UK - we import something like 40% of our food, last I heard.) But since this is unlikely to be achieved without strict, politically unpopular measures, nature will likely reduce the population for us, using her old standbys of the Four Horsemen, War, Famine, and Pestilence, followed closely by Death.

waltworks

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #173 on: October 15, 2018, 08:27:14 AM »
I know a lot of people who are very environmentally conscious - they are vegan/vegetarian, eat lots of local food, grow their own, ride bikes everywhere, and keep their houses cold in winter/hot in summer.

They also tend to drive giant Mercedes sprinter vans 1000s of miles to go on climbing/mountain biking/kayaking/ski trips, fly to Hokkaido to ski deep powder or HI to surf, etc.

I have a good friend who is a passive solar architect who brought a super cool little wood-fired stove to heat up *coffee* (flown to him from around the world) after driving to meet me in Moab in his sprinter (400 miles from his home). He refused to use my propane-fueled camping stove because he felt the environmental impact was too high.

If those people (and mean us/me as well) aren't actually serious about reducing their impact (and being realistic, they're not - they're doing stuff they like to do to feel good, then blowing it all up in an instant to go do their favorite things somewhere else) then good luck with the rest of the "normal" world.

Seriously, adaptation (on a personal level as well as societal) and geoengineering are what I am thinking about at this point. The ship sailed long ago on cutting emissions. We are going to live in a world with a much higher temperature and very different climate than we have now. Time to start planning for that.

-W

Kris

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #174 on: October 15, 2018, 08:31:22 AM »
I know a lot of people who are very environmentally conscious - they are vegan/vegetarian, eat lots of local food, grow their own, ride bikes everywhere, and keep their houses cold in winter/hot in summer.

They also tend to drive giant Mercedes sprinter vans 1000s of miles to go on climbing/mountain biking/kayaking/ski trips, fly to Hokkaido to ski deep powder or HI to surf, etc.

I have a good friend who is a passive solar architect who brought a super cool little wood-fired stove to heat up *coffee* (flown to him from around the world) after driving to meet me in Moab in his sprinter (400 miles from his home). He refused to use my propane-fueled camping stove because he felt the environmental impact was too high.

If those people (and mean us/me as well) aren't actually serious about reducing their impact (and being realistic, they're not - they're doing stuff they like to do to feel good, then blowing it all up in an instant to go do their favorite things somewhere else) then good luck with the rest of the "normal" world.

Seriously, adaptation (on a personal level as well as societal) and geoengineering are what I am thinking about at this point. The ship sailed long ago on cutting emissions. We are going to live in a world with a much higher temperature and very different climate than we have now. Time to start planning for that.

-W

Agreed. Capitalism at this point has such a hold on us that most people's idea of being environmentally friendly involves purchasing things. It seems most people can't conceive of any other way to "do" environmentalism. And the companies that trade in sustainable products know that, and profit from it.

Malaysia41

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #175 on: October 15, 2018, 08:33:07 AM »

Even if we can't single-handedly stop climate change by giving up flying, if your personal lifestyle is sustainable, that's still better for you because you'll have made the changes you needed to make before any sort of crisis hits, which means that by the time a crisis does come, you'll be able to cope with it far better than people who are still reliant on their planes, SUVs, and high-powered air-con/heating systems. I gave up flying myself as soon as I realised the severity of the situation.


Collapse Now and Avoid the Rush

^ this book explores this idea further. Really helped me think through our predicament when I began truly contemplating it.

GuitarStv

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #176 on: October 15, 2018, 08:48:44 AM »
I know a lot of people who are very environmentally conscious - they are vegan/vegetarian, eat lots of local food, grow their own, ride bikes everywhere, and keep their houses cold in winter/hot in summer.

They also tend to drive giant Mercedes sprinter vans 1000s of miles to go on climbing/mountain biking/kayaking/ski trips, fly to Hokkaido to ski deep powder or HI to surf, etc.

I have a good friend who is a passive solar architect who brought a super cool little wood-fired stove to heat up *coffee* (flown to him from around the world) after driving to meet me in Moab in his sprinter (400 miles from his home). He refused to use my propane-fueled camping stove because he felt the environmental impact was too high.

If those people (and mean us/me as well) aren't actually serious about reducing their impact (and being realistic, they're not - they're doing stuff they like to do to feel good, then blowing it all up in an instant to go do their favorite things somewhere else) then good luck with the rest of the "normal" world.

Seriously, adaptation (on a personal level as well as societal) and geoengineering are what I am thinking about at this point. The ship sailed long ago on cutting emissions. We are going to live in a world with a much higher temperature and very different climate than we have now. Time to start planning for that.

-W

Agreed. Capitalism at this point has such a hold on us that most people's idea of being environmentally friendly involves purchasing things. It seems most people can't conceive of any other way to "do" environmentalism. And the companies that trade in sustainable products know that, and profit from it.

The thing is, it's very hard as an individual to manage to do everything properly.  There are a billion things that have a negative environmental impact, it's easy to aim for some of the simple to see ones and very hard to catch all the hidden ones.  There's also overload . . . if you make your whole life about trying to be green, you're going to get ever diminishing returns.  Having a zillion people trying to individually puzzle out all of this is incredibly inefficient.  This is really an area where governments need to take a lead in helping people.  There are many small areas where we can give people a bit of a push to do the right thing:

Regulation of utilities needs to happen so that flat rate charges disappear from bills.  You should pay based solely on usage if we want to encourage conservation.  (Currently, I pay fixed costs on my water, electricity, and gas bills that are as much or significantly exceed my usage most months . . . so why should I conserve?)

Public transit construction needs to take priority over highway and roads development.  Cycling infrastructure should be created, even if it means reducing the number of lanes available for automobiles.

Building codes can be changed to make every new house and apartment significantly more energy efficient through materials, and design.

Travel by extremely polluting means should be taxed heavily.  These taxes should be invested into alternative energy generation.

etc.


That's why it's so painful to watch governments not only turn their backs on the idea of leadership, but actively work in the opposite direction.

Kris

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #177 on: October 15, 2018, 08:49:54 AM »
I know a lot of people who are very environmentally conscious - they are vegan/vegetarian, eat lots of local food, grow their own, ride bikes everywhere, and keep their houses cold in winter/hot in summer.

They also tend to drive giant Mercedes sprinter vans 1000s of miles to go on climbing/mountain biking/kayaking/ski trips, fly to Hokkaido to ski deep powder or HI to surf, etc.

I have a good friend who is a passive solar architect who brought a super cool little wood-fired stove to heat up *coffee* (flown to him from around the world) after driving to meet me in Moab in his sprinter (400 miles from his home). He refused to use my propane-fueled camping stove because he felt the environmental impact was too high.

If those people (and mean us/me as well) aren't actually serious about reducing their impact (and being realistic, they're not - they're doing stuff they like to do to feel good, then blowing it all up in an instant to go do their favorite things somewhere else) then good luck with the rest of the "normal" world.

Seriously, adaptation (on a personal level as well as societal) and geoengineering are what I am thinking about at this point. The ship sailed long ago on cutting emissions. We are going to live in a world with a much higher temperature and very different climate than we have now. Time to start planning for that.

-W

Agreed. Capitalism at this point has such a hold on us that most people's idea of being environmentally friendly involves purchasing things. It seems most people can't conceive of any other way to "do" environmentalism. And the companies that trade in sustainable products know that, and profit from it.

The thing is, it's very hard as an individual to manage to do everything properly.  There are a billion things that have a negative environmental impact, it's easy to aim for some of the simple to see ones and very hard to catch all the hidden ones.  There's also overload . . . if you make your whole life about trying to be green, you're going to get ever diminishing returns.  Having a zillion people trying to individually puzzle out all of this is incredibly inefficient.  This is really an area where governments need to take a lead in helping people.  There are many small areas where we can give people a bit of a push to do the right thing:

Regulation of utilities needs to happen so that flat rate charges disappear from bills.  You should pay based solely on usage if we want to encourage conservation.  (Currently, I pay fixed costs on my water, electricity, and gas bills that are as much or significantly exceed my usage most months . . . so why should I conserve?)

Public transit construction needs to take priority over highway and roads development.  Cycling infrastructure should be created, even if it means reducing the number of lanes available for automobiles.

Building codes can be changed to make every new house and apartment significantly more energy efficient through materials, and design.

Travel by extremely polluting means should be taxed heavily.  These taxes should be invested into alternative energy generation.

etc.


That's why it's so painful to watch governments not only turn their backs on the idea of leadership, but actively work in the opposite direction.

I completely agree.

waltworks

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #178 on: October 15, 2018, 08:57:39 AM »
I agree that all those things should happen, and I spend a lot of time advocating for them and voting for candidates who are at least vaguely interested in environmental issues.

I also recognize that 20 years of that kind of behavior on my part (and many others) has resulted in exactly zero results. In fact one could argue we've made things worse, given that the focus has been entirely on conservation and basically zero on adaptation. What's the saying about insanity being doing the same thing again and again and expecting a new result?

I spend a lot of time now thinking about where is the safest place to live for my family. I talk to people I know in the prepper/SHTF community and they don't seem so crazy anymore. What a world.

-W

Malaysia41

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #179 on: October 15, 2018, 09:24:23 AM »
Even if you make the most environmentally ethical choices possible, in the western world, your carbon footprint is still ~3x what's arguably sustainable

Quote
But the "floor" below which nobody in the U.S. can reach, no matter a person's energy choices, turned out to be 8.5 tons, the class found. That was the emissions calculated for a homeless person who ate in soup kitchens and slept in homeless shelters.

-http://news.mit.edu/2008/footprint-tt0416

RichCantante

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #180 on: October 15, 2018, 09:26:05 AM »
OK, thanks again for more interesting links like the Druid guy. Never heard of that, cool. But here this convo goes again devolving to pessimism (perhaps it only ever attracted pessimists in the first place -- I know I've been avoiding thinking heavily about climate change for a long time).

1. Too much info -> inaction
2. Flying too much is a rich people problem, driving too much is an everyone problem
3. Driving cars causes more CO2 emission than most other practices, even for those who also fly
4. If everyone reduced or eliminated driving they would see improvements in health, happiness, congestion, noise, danger + reduce CO2
5. Top 100 polluting companies contribute 75% of all greenhouse gases, and driving less would cause those companies to leave more carbon in the ground
6. Progress has already been made toward electric vehicles, and automakers are already ending manufacture of the ICE car in just a few years
7. Just as smoking was once viewed as we now view coffee as a healthy pick-me-up, it now carries a connotation of ill health and bad habit
8. Smoking cessation has vastly succeeded and so can driving cessation
9. Driving cessation won't happen overnight but already behaviorally driving is reduced among teens and young adults and no longer worshipped
10. Bicycle riding in many areas is rising, and kids and teens are back into bike culture with scraper bikes and tricks
11. The greatest risk is not that we won't do the right thing, it is that we won't do ANYTHING to stop CO2 emissions
« Last Edit: October 15, 2018, 09:31:06 AM by RichCantante »

Meowkins

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #181 on: October 15, 2018, 09:33:00 AM »
Re: having 3x the footprint as an individual regardless of effort, that is a 10 year old experiment with no shared methodology, so I am wondering how it holds up today. It also makes the statement that some choices wouldn't be palatable to most Americans, which addresses the issue of social change.

Of course, individual effort alone is not enough to account for fixing the problem alone, but it may make change possible while we move with slower systems (municipalities, states, etc.), so it doesn't have to be perfect, I guess.

I think it's important to note that while we have known for a while what to do, it's only now that certain technologies are economically feasible. Re: flight, this is also an area where I am pretty darn hypocritical. I guess we can only hope for algae fueled airplanes at some time if we enjoy travel *and* want to stay environmentally friendly.

maizeman

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #182 on: October 15, 2018, 09:33:42 AM »
Collapse Now and Avoid the Rush

^ this book explores this idea further. Really helped me think through our predicament when I began truly contemplating it.

Sounds interesting. I've ordered a (digital) copy.

9. Driving cessation won't happen overnight but already behaviorally it is reduced among teens and young adults
10. Bicycle riding in many areas is rising, and kids and teens are back into bike culture with scraper bikes and tricks

Pessimistic counterpoint: bicycle commuting in the USA increased a lot year over year through 2014 but as been declining since then.* The increase coincided with years of high(er) gas prices and the decrease with a significant drop in the price of gasoline in the USA from 3-something a gallon to 2-something a gallon.

If you give people strong economic signals, they will indeed change their behavior, but trying to change behavior through culture alone without legal or economic signals to back it up is a lot harder, and doesn't appear to be working for bicycling at the moment (although it is certainly possible I will be proven wrong when the current generation of teenagers become adults).

*Source: http://www.davemabe.com/2018/09/30/commuting-by-bicycle-is-down/

GuitarStv

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #183 on: October 15, 2018, 09:44:21 AM »
Even if you make the most environmentally ethical choices possible, in the western world, your carbon footprint is still ~3x what's arguably sustainable

Quote
But the "floor" below which nobody in the U.S. can reach, no matter a person's energy choices, turned out to be 8.5 tons, the class found. That was the emissions calculated for a homeless person who ate in soup kitchens and slept in homeless shelters.

-http://news.mit.edu/2008/footprint-tt0416

I feel that a Swiftian solution may help us here.  What if we eat the homeless?

BookLoverL

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #184 on: October 15, 2018, 09:46:10 AM »

Even if we can't single-handedly stop climate change by giving up flying, if your personal lifestyle is sustainable, that's still better for you because you'll have made the changes you needed to make before any sort of crisis hits, which means that by the time a crisis does come, you'll be able to cope with it far better than people who are still reliant on their planes, SUVs, and high-powered air-con/heating systems. I gave up flying myself as soon as I realised the severity of the situation.


Collapse Now and Avoid the Rush

^ this book explores this idea further. Really helped me think through our predicament when I began truly contemplating it.


Oh, look. It's a link to a book by one of my favourite ever bloggers. ;)

Quality writer, would recommend.

The thing that usually gets missed with the whole argument of "politicians won't do anything, we should all individually be doing all this!" vs. "those things have no effect, we need to make the politicians do this!" is that both individual AND political action is needed in order to have a significant impact, and a lot of the time arguments for one have the effect of dissuading people from doing the other, when really the world would benefit most from people doing both.

I know a lot of people who are very environmentally conscious - they are vegan/vegetarian, eat lots of local food, grow their own, ride bikes everywhere, and keep their houses cold in winter/hot in summer.

They also tend to drive giant Mercedes sprinter vans 1000s of miles to go on climbing/mountain biking/kayaking/ski trips, fly to Hokkaido to ski deep powder or HI to surf, etc.

I have a good friend who is a passive solar architect who brought a super cool little wood-fired stove to heat up *coffee* (flown to him from around the world) after driving to meet me in Moab in his sprinter (400 miles from his home). He refused to use my propane-fueled camping stove because he felt the environmental impact was too high.

If those people (and mean us/me as well) aren't actually serious about reducing their impact (and being realistic, they're not - they're doing stuff they like to do to feel good, then blowing it all up in an instant to go do their favorite things somewhere else) then good luck with the rest of the "normal" world.

Seriously, adaptation (on a personal level as well as societal) and geoengineering are what I am thinking about at this point. The ship sailed long ago on cutting emissions. We are going to live in a world with a much higher temperature and very different climate than we have now. Time to start planning for that.

-W

I agree that we are well beyond "reversing the effect" and into "adapt to what's coming". And the people who claim to be eco-friendly while still flying all over the place and refusing to reduce their big-ticket fossil fuel items like car use really annoy me. They're so hypocritical. None of us are perfect, but if someone can't see the problem with flying and driving everywhere, I'm confused as to how they can actually consider themselves eco-friendly.

RetiredAt63

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #185 on: October 15, 2018, 09:57:38 AM »
I look at all the train tracks that have been turned into hiking trails, and hope they turn back into train tracks.  Where I live there used to be trains to Ottawa and Montreal on a regular basis, commuter trains really, now those tracks are trails, and everyone is in a car driving the 417.   So much more efficient to drive/bike/walk to the train station, and be able to do things on the work commute, instead of driving.  Plus less parking needed in the destinations.  And the new engines are quite efficient, certainly more efficient than all those single occupant cars.

RichCantante

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #186 on: October 15, 2018, 10:03:03 AM »
Yo, John Michael Greer (the blogger Druid guy referred to above) is FANTASTIC. What a gem. MMM forum has led to more interesting discoveries than any other source on the Internet. Thanks.

https://www.ecosophia.net/

RichCantante

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #187 on: October 15, 2018, 10:07:00 AM »
Yeah @RetiredAt63, perhaps the golden age of driving is over but wouldn't a return to the golden age of trains be GRAND!

Glenstache

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #188 on: October 15, 2018, 10:33:50 AM »
Population is the problem, not mankind's contribution to carbon dioxide in the air.

I have a friend who makes this argument. He is childless and his hobby is flying aircraft. It is perhaps possible that this is a self-serving argument.

It doesn't matter if what we do has an impact or not. "It is not a man's duty, as a matter of course, to devote himself to the eradication of any, even the most enormous wrong; he may still properly have other concerns to engage him; but it is his duty, at least, to wash his hands of it, and, if he gives it no thought longer, not to give it practically his support." - your countryman Henry David Thoreau.


Now, what sort of lifestyle might we choose if we wished to wash our hands of personal contribution to climate change, and not to give it practically our support? I would suggest that many of the things we could do are things which would also help our finances and our personal health: stop flying, home and work closer to each-other and walk and cycle rather than drive, eat less junk food and meat, use less natural gas and electricity, and so on. If you care only about finances, these are all good things to do; if you care only about health, these are all good things to do; and if you care only about the environment, these are all good things to do.

Further, once you consider the environment of other countries, and how places like China have worse environmental practices than most of the West, and then consider also the collapse of manufacturing in the West, "buy local" is both an environmentalist and a patriotic maxim.

I'm old-fashioned. I believe: duty first. Whether or not I pay my taxes, do jury duty or military or civilian service of some kind, whether I speak well of my wife behind her back or not, whether or not I call people by racial epithets when out of their hearing, the practical impact of these things is almost zero. Nonetheless an adult in a civilised society has duties. A duty is something which whether you like it or not and whether it makes a difference or not you simply must do. A society is nothing but an accumulation of kept promises and duties met.

Now, some may reply that we as humans have no duties to one another. And I would answer that this is indeed a popular point of view, and explains much of the world's problems now, but I wash my hands of such an idea, and do not give it practically my support.

+1 Great post.

RetiredAt63

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #189 on: October 15, 2018, 10:59:32 AM »
Yeah @RetiredAt63, perhaps the golden age of driving is over but wouldn't a return to the golden age of trains be GRAND!

It would be, I'm not holding my breath.
 
I have taken Via Rail from Ottawa to Toronto and I know people who have taken Via from Montreal to Toronto, instead of flying.  Via shunts passenger trains to the sides for freight trains, they never arrive on time.  Seats are OK for short trips, but uncomfortable for 5 hours.  Bonuses, no security checks, you can walk up and down the aisles all you want, nice scenery.

Meowkins

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #190 on: October 15, 2018, 11:31:04 AM »
I'm not holding my breath either. I can get to my hometown to visit family for free with easily acquired airline points in 2 hours versus paying almost $1000 for a 17 hour trip there. And isn't Amtrak subsidized? Why is it still garbage?

maizeman

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #191 on: October 15, 2018, 11:43:36 AM »
I'm not holding my breath either. I can get to my hometown to visit family for free with easily acquired airline points in 2 hours versus paying almost $1000 for a 17 hour trip there. And isn't Amtrak subsidized? Why is it still garbage?

Low ridership with fixed infrastructure cost = noncompetitive prices and terrible schedules.

Noncompetitively high prices and terrible schedules = lower ridership.

One of the college towns I visit has an amtrack stop right in town, but the only train that comes through does so sometime between 1-3 AM each day.

Meowkins

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #192 on: October 15, 2018, 11:47:55 AM »
I'm not holding my breath either. I can get to my hometown to visit family for free with easily acquired airline points in 2 hours versus paying almost $1000 for a 17 hour trip there. And isn't Amtrak subsidized? Why is it still garbage?

Low ridership with fixed infrastructure cost = noncompetitive prices and terrible schedules.

Noncompetitively high prices and terrible schedules = lower ridership.

One of the college towns I visit has an amtrack stop right in town, but the only train that comes through does so sometime between 1-3 AM each day.

SIGH. Alright. This group as my witness, when my Southwest points dry up, I'll use the damn Amtrak garbage train exclusively. Gotta be part of the solution if I'm going to panic about the outcome. I can work remotely pretty much whenever I want, so there's really no excuse.

But hey, FIRE folk probably have no real excuse, since time is limitless, right? ;)

GuitarStv

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #193 on: October 15, 2018, 11:50:33 AM »
But hey, FIRE folk probably have no real excuse, since time is limitless, right? ;)

I figure that I could largely eschew travel by means other than bike once retired.

maizeman

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #194 on: October 15, 2018, 11:55:15 AM »
SIGH. Alright. This group as my witness, when my Southwest points dry up, I'll use the damn Amtrak garbage train exclusively. Gotta be part of the solution if I'm going to panic about the outcome. I can work remotely pretty much whenever I want, so there's really no excuse.

You're a better person than I, but good for you!

Meowkins

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #195 on: October 15, 2018, 11:55:33 AM »
But hey, FIRE folk probably have no real excuse, since time is limitless, right? ;)

I figure that I could largely eschew travel by means other than bike once retired.

Traveling cross country, at least in US, sounds hellacious and unrealistic for families. I do think that people being able to see different parts of the world is an awesome thing and there should be a conscious effort to create opportunities for that!

Meowkins

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #196 on: October 15, 2018, 11:56:59 AM »
SIGH. Alright. This group as my witness, when my Southwest points dry up, I'll use the damn Amtrak garbage train exclusively. Gotta be part of the solution if I'm going to panic about the outcome. I can work remotely pretty much whenever I want, so there's really no excuse.

You're a better person than I, but good for you!

;) Tell me that once I've actually followed through on this idealism.

RetiredAt63

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #197 on: October 15, 2018, 12:10:32 PM »
My one round trip on Via compared to flying - Via rail was less expensive but so much slower, even looking at the time spent getting to the airport early.  Really the railway companies seem to be putting most of their effort into freight.

OT, time is just as valuable to those of us who are retired.  Via rail certainly did not encourage to spend more time with them.     

PoutineLover

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #198 on: October 15, 2018, 12:18:26 PM »
I think all drives under 6 hours could be easily replaced by fast trains, since those are usually 1 hour flights but with all the transit time and security lines etc. involved in flying you end up spending 4 hours getting there anyway. Unfortunately in Canada at least, the trains have terrible schedules, cost as much as flying, and take way too long because it's single track and freight has priority. My family is scattered around the country and flying is the only way I can see them in my limited vacation time. If flying was limited to flights that were not feasible by train (across oceans or countries only) then we could significantly reduce airline greenhouse gas emissions. A robust and efficient high speed electric train system would be a great investment that would create a lot more jobs than bringing back coal..

maizeman

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Re: IPCC Climate Report on 1.5
« Reply #199 on: October 15, 2018, 12:18:56 PM »
My one round trip on Via compared to flying - Via rail was less expensive but so much slower, even looking at the time spent getting to the airport early.  Really the railway companies seem to be putting most of their effort into freight.

OT, time is just as valuable to those of us who are retired.  Via rail certainly did not encourage to spend more time with them.     

By comparison, passenger rail in China is amazing. Cheaper than flying, you have a lot more space than in an airplane seat, getting through security isn't nearly as bad as the airport, and the trains run at something like 180 mph, which is still substantially slower than planes, but for flights under ~3 hours it ends up being a wash because you save enough time on security and boarding/deboarding to make up for the longer time in transit.