Search Results for Tag: emissions
CO2 emissions rise beyond worst expectations
Barely a month ahead of the UN climate summit in Durban, new figures show that global CO2 emissions a rising at record pace. The grim numbers from the US Department of Energy say the amount of carbon dioxide pumped into our atmosphere in 2010 was 6 percent higher than the year before.
6 percent doesn’t sound much? Well, it corresponds to more than half a billion metric tons of CO2 extra! Or, as a commentator on this blog puts it “We’re really flooring the accelerator as we approach the cliff”
DateNovember 4, 2011
Sustainable Agriculture: A Recipe
By the year 2050, there’s expected to be 9 billion people living on our planet. Can we feed all those people without destroying the earth? That’s the question a new report is trying to answer. A team of researchers from the U.S., Canada, Sweden and Germany worked together on a major article that will be published in Nature journal in a few days, and their conclusion is this: the only way forward is to create a global plan for sustainable agriculture.
What is that plan? According to the researchers, it will include key steps like halting farmland expansion into our tropics, using existing farmland more effectively, changing our diet patterns and cutting down on the food waste we produce. And those steps are crucial to keeping the planet healthy. Farm land and pastures now cover about 40% of our planet and agriculture accounts for a third of all the emissions produced around the globe. If there’s a sustainable solution to the future of farming and producing food, it could mean a major breakthrough for our environment.
DateOctober 18, 2011
Cooking smoke a greater killer than Malaria
Lots of money and effort has gone into awareness raising, public health campaigns and law suits in a bid to wean the world off smoking. Lots of money and effort also continues to go into the prevention and treatment of malaria. But there’s another type of smoke that some three billion people around the globe can’t escape and that, according to recent findings, kills more than Malaria.
According to the World Health Organization almost half the world’s population cook their food and heat their homes using open fires or leaky stoves that run on wood, coal or biomass. And nearly two million people die prematurely as a result of inhaling the smoke day in and day out. That makes it a greater killer than malaria. Women and children are particularly affected as they tend to spend more time at home while men are working outside.
But there are also other problems with open wood fires. They emit CO2 and the wood used for cooking is often logged unsustainably. GLOBAL IDEAS has reported on clean and safe alternatives.
Efficient stoves in Peru Click here to learn more
Solar cookers in India Click here to learn more
DateOctober 14, 2011
Europe has some of the most bike-friendly cities on the globe, from Copenhagen and Berlin to Amsterdam and Barcelona. But cities elsewhere in the world have also caught onto the trend, like Portland and San Francisco in the U.S. and Kyoto and Singapore in Asia.
Bikes help cut down on traffic, congestion and harmful greenhouse gas emissions. They also lead to a healthier, more active society, and they’re much cheaper than a lot of other modes of transportation.
But what will the future look like when it comes to bikes and cars? Will we ever see a major metropolis completely dependent upon bikes and public transit? It’s hard to imagine that happening, especially in the world’s most densley-populated cities, where there is little infrastructure to support bike traffic. Still, we could see completely car-free urban centers in the future…only time will tell!
DateAugust 17, 2011
C40 Commitment to Change?
The World Bank and the C40 – the mayors of the world’s 40 biggest cities – have come to an agreement to fund the fight against climate change! The leaders met in Sao Paulo in Brazil to come up with a concrete plan to cut their respective cities’ carbon footprints, and the World Bank promised financial support for those efforts.
Why is that news important? Well, megacities like New York, Rio de Janeiro, Paris and Jakarta are responsible for 12% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. And all too often, they just don’t have the budget to implement green-friendly projects without outside help. Plus, the World Bank released a study at the C40 summit that says around 1 billion people worldwide who are living in big city slums are especially threatened by climate change. So if the 40 biggest metropolises can charge ahead now, we could see some drastic improvements in creating a cleaner planet and a green future.
Do you live in any of the C40 megacities? If so, how has climate change affected urban life there?
DateJune 2, 2011