Monday, December 24, 2018

Unprecedented New Map Unveils Illegal Mining Destroying Amazon


The illegal La Pampa gold mine, seen here in 2017, has devastated the Peruvian Amazon and spread poisonous mercury.


A first-of-its-kind map has unveiled widespread environmental damage and contamination of the Amazon rainforest caused by the rise illegal mining. 

The survey, released Monday by the Amazon Socio-Environmental Geo-Referenced Information Project (RAISG), identifies at least 2,312 sites and 245 areas of prospecting or extraction of minerals such as gold, diamonds and coltan in six Amazonian countries—Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela. It also identified 30 rivers affected by mining and related activities.

more: Unprecedented New Map Unveils Illegal Mining Destroying Amazon



Tuesday, December 18, 2018

The Coming of Hyperwar: "Alexa, Launch Our Nukes!"



Artificial intelligence and the future of war

…With artificial intelligence, or AI, soon to play an ever-increasing role in military affairs, as in virtually everything else in our lives, the role of humans, even in nuclear decision-making, is likely to be progressively diminished. In fact, in some future AI-saturated world, it could disappear entirely, leaving machines to determine humanity’s fate…

read: The Coming of Hyperwar: "Alexa, Launch Our Nukes!"

www.stopkillerrobots.org

Campaign to Stop Killer Robots - Facebook

Friday, December 14, 2018

#COP24 :: Civil society rises up as fossil fuel companies and climate deniers block progress at COP24 Katowice climate talks - Friends of the Earth International



Katowice, Poland, 14 December 2018: As the UN climate talks go into their final hours in Katowice, progress on the ‘Paris Rulebook’ and other key decisions, like acknowledging the landmark Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 1.5 degrees report, has been terrifyingly slow. Negotiations are not on track to pass the tests of science or justice, with obstruction from key fossil fuel-pushing governments.

Sara Shaw, Climate Justice and Energy International Program Coordinator for Friends of the Earth International said:

‘We always knew this was going to be a tough conference, taking place deep in the heartlands of the Polish coal industry, with companies like Shell, Exxon and BP inside the negotiations promoting the myth that we can stop climate change without dismantling the fossil fuel industry. But it is still devastating to see countries like the US, Saudi Arabia, Russia and Kuwait destroy our chances of a safe and liveable planet by blocking progress at every juncture. It has been known for over 50 years that greenhouse gases cause climate change. Yet here we stand on the brink of catastrophe because corporate interests and fossil fuel money have infiltrated the climate talks to perpetuate the dirty energy system regardless of the cost for people and planet. The fact that Shell boasted this week of how it helped to write the Paris Agreement is only more evidence of this reality.’

more: Civil society rises up as fossil fuel companies and climate deniers block progress at COP24 Katowice climate talks - Friends of the Earth International


Thursday, December 13, 2018

You Are Stealing Our Future: Greta Thunberg, 15, Condemns the World’s Inaction on Climate Change | Democracy Now!




Fifteen-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg addressed the U.N. plenary last night in Katowice, Poland, condemning global inaction in the face of catastrophic climate change.


"…Until you start focusing on what needs to be done, rather than what is politically possible, there is no hope. We cannot solve a crisis without treating it as a crisis. We need to keep the fossil fuels in the ground, and we need to focus on equity. And if solutions within the system are so impossible to find, then maybe we should change the system itself…"

transcript: You Are Stealing Our Future: Greta Thunberg, 15, Condemns the World’s Inaction on Climate Change | Democracy Now!

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Why Green New Deal Advocates Must Address Militarism


(Photo: Sunrise Movement / @SunriseMvmt)

Where is the call for the New Peace Deal that would free up hundreds of billions from the overblown military budget to invest in green infrastructure?

In the spirit of a new year and a new Congress, 2019 may well be our best and last opportunity to steer our ship of state away from the twin planetary perils of environmental chaos and militarism, charting a course towards an earth-affirming 21st century.

The environmental crisis was laid bare by the sobering December report of the UN Climate panel: If the world fails to mobilize within the next 12 years on the level of a moon shot, and gear up to change our energy usage from toxic fossil, nuclear and industrial biomass fuels to the already known solutions for employing solar, wind, hydro, geothermal energy and efficiency, we will destroy all life on earth as we know it. The existential question is whether our elected officials, with the reins of power, are going to sit by helplessly as our planet experiences more devastating fires, floods, droughts, and rising seas or will they seize this moment and take monumental action as we did when the United States abolished slavery, gave women the vote, ended the great depression, and eliminated legal segregation.

Some members of Congress are already showing their historic mettle by supporting a Green New Deal. This would not only start to reverse the damage we have inflicted on our collective home, but it would create hundreds of thousands of good jobs that cannot be shipped overseas to low wage countries…

more: Why Green New Deal Advocates Must Address Militarism


Monday, December 10, 2018

#COP24 :: Tackle climate or face financial crash, say world's biggest investors


UN summit urged to end all coal burning and introduce substantial taxes on emissions

Global investors managing $32tn issued a stark warning to governments at the UN climate summit on Monday, demanding urgent cuts in carbon emissions and the phasing out of all coal burning. Without these, the world faces a financial crash several times worse than the 2008 crisis, they said.
The investors include some of the world’s biggest pension funds, insurers and asset managers and marks the largest such intervention to date. They say fossil fuel subsidies must end and substantial taxes on carbon be introduced.


Ministers arrive at the UN climate summit in Katowice, Poland, on Monday for its crucial second week, when the negotiations on turning the vision of the Paris agreement into reality reach a critical point, with finance for fighting global warming a key area of dispute.
“The long-term nature of the challenge has, in our view, met a zombie-like response by many,” said Chris Newton, of IFM Investors which manages $80bn and is one of the 415 groups that has signed the Global Investor Statement. “This is a recipe for disaster as the impacts of climate change can be sudden, severe and catastrophic…”

more: Tackle climate or face financial crash, say world's biggest investors | Environment | The Guardian