As the climate warms, oil disappears, and the economy shakes and shifts, how will our urban places adapt? Will density and communal living be important tools for human resilience, or will city life become costly and unworkable—or even unlivable? Listen to Kunstler share his forecast for the American city, elaborate on his feature in the July/August 2011 issue of the magazine, and answer listener questions.
Tagged with “climate” (10)
This week on Science Weekly Alok Jha meets the environmental activist and science writer Mark Lynas. Best known for his award-winning book Six Degrees about the horrific consequences of global warming, he’s back with The God Species: How the Planet Can Survive the Age of Humans in which he describes the nine ecosystems that sustain life and diversity on the planet.
According to the synopsis at the Guardian’s Bookshop: "We humans are the God Species, both the creators and destroyers of life. In this groundbreaking new book, Mark Lynas shows us how we must use our technological mastery over nature to save the planet from ourselves."
Alok discusses Mark’s very public falling out with the Green movement due to his support for nuclear energy and GM crops. The God Species was pulled from sale on Amazon without explanation earlier this month after a customer complaint. It was quickly reinstated after a Twitter campaign.
Also on this week’s Science Weekly podcast our reporter Anna Perman visits the Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition to explore the sounds and sights of an event where young scientists from around the UK gather to demonstrate their research.
Arthur Marcel lectures at the Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane and in today’s talk he compares the circumstances surrounding the sinking of the Titanic to issues surrounding global warming.
Freeman Dyson of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about science, his career, and the future. Dyson argues for the importance of what he calls heresy—challenging the scientific dogmas of the day. Dyson argues that our knowledge of climate science is incomplete and that too many scientists treat it as if it were totally understood. He reflects on his childhood and earlier work, particularly in the area of space travel. And he says that biology is the science today with the most exciting developments.
Environmental journalist Mark Hertsgaard discusses his new book, "Hot: Living Through the Next Fifty Years." Writing from the perspective of a father, Hertsgaard outlines the changes he foresees happening in the global environment over the next fifty years, emphasizing how his five-year-old daughter’s generation will have to contend with the disruptions of climate change.
Renowned paleontologist Peter Ward argues that life might be its own worst enemy. He proposes a provocative vision of life’s relationship with the Earth’s biosphere in The Medea Hypothesis: Is Life on Earth Ultimately Self-Destructive? Ward’s proposes that all but one of the mass extinctions on Earth were caused by life itself, and reveals that there is an alarming decline of diversity and biomass on Earth, caused by life’s own "biocidal" tendencies.
The debacle of the Copenhagen summit told as a Dr. Seuss story on BBC’s The Now Show.
This talk was given at Cowell Theatre in Fort Mason Center in San Francisco, California on Friday October 9, 02009.
Brand built his case for rethinking environmental goals and methods on two major changes going on in the world. The one that most people still don’t take into consideration is that power is shifting to the developing world, where 5 out of 6 people live, where the bulk of humanity is getting out of poverty by moving to cities and creating their own jobs and communities (slums, for now).
The second dominant global fact is climate change. Brand emphasized that climate is a severely nonlinear system packed with tipping points and positive feedbacks such as the unpredicted rapid melting of Arctic ice.
Global warming has to be slowed by reducing the emission of greenhouse gases from combustion, but cities require dependable baseload electricity, and so far the only carbon-free sources are hydroelectric dams and nuclear power. Brand contrasted nuclear with coal-burning by comparing what happens with their waste products.
Moving to genetically engineered food crops, Brand noted that they are a tremendous success story in agriculture, with Green benefits such as no-till farming, lowered pesticide use, and more land freed up to be wild. The developing world is taking the lead with the technology, designing crops to deal with the specialized problems of tropical agriculture. Meanwhile the new field of synthetic biology is bringing a generation of Green biotech hackers into existence.
Prof Freeman Dyson of Princeton has long been a critic of climate change orthodoxies. Here he talks of his life as a daring proposer of ideas - such as the genetically modified trees to soak up carbon dioxide and kites flying in Antarctica to cause more snowfall and abate sea level rise.
Dr. Warren Allmon, director of the Paleontological Research Institution, leads a panel discussion about the future of evolution
As part of the Museum of Natural History at Noon series, Dr. Warren Allmon, director of the Paleontological Research Institution, led a panel discussion on Feb. 14, 2008 about how human activities are changing the direction and rate of future evolution. Discussion ranged from species classification debate to the impact of modern medicine on the evolutionary advancement of humans.
Darwin Day is an annual international commemoration of the birthday and ideas of Charles Darwin, a British naturalist born Feb. 12, 1809, and author of the seminal book "On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection."