jm + environment   11

Neoliberalism has conned us into fighting climate change as individuals | Martin Lukacs | Environment | The Guardian
These pervasive exhortations to individual action — in corporate ads, school textbooks, and the campaigns of mainstream environmental groups, especially in the west — seem as natural as the air we breathe. But we could hardly be worse-served.

While we busy ourselves greening our personal lives, fossil fuel corporations are rendering these efforts irrelevant. The breakdown of carbon emissions since 1988? A hundred companies alone are responsible for an astonishing 71%. You tinker with those pens or that panel; they go on torching the planet.

The freedom of these corporations to pollute – and the fixation on a feeble lifestyle response – is no accident. It is the result of an ideological war, waged over the last 40 years, against the possibility of collective action. Devastatingly successful, it is not too late to reverse it. The political project of neoliberalism, brought to ascendence by Thatcher and Reagan, has pursued two principal objectives. The first has been to dismantle any barriers to the exercise of unaccountable private power. The second had been to erect them to the exercise of any democratic public will. [...]

At the very moment when climate change demands an unprecedented collective public response, neoliberal ideology stands in the way. Which is why, if we want to bring down emissions fast, we will need to overcome all of its free-market mantras.
politics  environment  neoliberalism  future  climate-change  green 
17 days ago by jm
Bitcoin must die
If Bitcoin were to cease trading tomorrow, 0.5% of the world’s electricity demand would simply disappear. This is roughly equivalent to the output of ten coal-fired power plants, emitting 50 million tonnes of CO2 per year – which would cover one year’s worth of the carbon emission cuts required to limit temperature rises this century to 2C. It is not a solution by itself, but it would be a good year’s work. Bitcoin is made from ashes, and if ashes were legal tender, humanity would burn everything in sight and call it progress.
environment  bitcoin  ecology  future  earth  cryptocurrencies  pow  electricity  climate-change 
4 weeks ago by jm
'We're doomed': Mayer Hillman on the climate reality no one else will dare mention | Environment | The Guardian
Well this is terrifying.
Can civilisation prolong its life until the end of this century? “It depends on what we are prepared to do.” He fears it will be a long time before we take proportionate action to stop climatic calamity. “Standing in the way is capitalism. Can you imagine the global airline industry being dismantled when hundreds of new runways are being built right now all over the world? It’s almost as if we’re deliberately attempting to defy nature. We’re doing the reverse of what we should be doing, with everybody’s silent acquiescence, and nobody’s batting an eyelid.”
climate  capitalism  environment  future  scary  mayer-hillman 
5 weeks ago by jm
‘Nothing to worry about. The water is fine’: how Flint poisoned its people | News | The Guardian
The anxiety reverberated all the way to the state capital, Lansing, where Governor Rick Snyder was weeks away from winning reelection. His chief legal counsel, Michael Gadola, wrote in an email: “To anyone who grew up in Flint as I did, the notion that I would be getting my drinking water from the Flint River is downright scary. Too bad the [emergency manager] didn’t ask me what I thought, though I’m sure he heard it from plenty of others. My mom is a city resident. Nice to know she’s drinking water with elevated chlorine levels and fecal coliform … They should try to get back on the Detroit system as a stopgap ASAP before this thing gets too far out of control.”
flint  michigan  bureaucracy  water  poisoning  corrosion  poison  us-politics  environment  taxes 
july 2018 by jm
Crazy maths makes nonsense of Irish climate change policy
'John FitzGerald on madness of Ireland burning peat for electricity:

'the current subsidy per job involved is at least €100,000 a year. The Bord na Móna annual report indicates that, in the year 2016/2017, its workers’ average pay was €50,000. In other words, the subsidy per job is around twice what the workers involved actually earn.

If the peat-fired power stations were closed tomorrow, and the workers involved continued to be employed on their current wages, subsidising these jobs would only cost €50 million, not €100 million. Electricity consumers would pay less to subsidise these jobs, and Ireland’s greenhouse gas emissions would fall substantially as a result of discontinuing this polluting fuel use.'

We should plan for closure by 2020 of peat-fired electricity generation:

–greatly benefit environment;
–save electricity consumers money;
–protect livelihoods.
environment  peat  ireland  electricity  fossil-fuels  policy  climate-change 
june 2018 by jm
How to change Gradle cache location
$GRADLE_USER_HOME, basically -- it may also be possible to set from the Gradle script itself too
gradle  build  caching  environment  unix  cache 
may 2015 by jm
Photographs of Sellafield nuclear plant prompt fears over radioactive risk
"Slow-motion Chernobyl", as Greenpeace are calling it. You thought legacy code was a problem? try legacy Magnox fuel rods.
Previously unseen pictures of two storage ponds containing hundreds of highly radioactive fuel rods at the Sellafield nuclear plant show cracked concrete, seagulls bathing in the water and weeds growing around derelict machinery. But a spokesman for owners Sellafield Ltd said the 60-year-old ponds will not be cleaned up for decades, despite concern that they are in a dangerous state and could cause a large release of radioactive material if they are allowed to deteriorate further.

“The concrete is in dreadful condition, degraded and fractured, and if the ponds drain, the Magnox fuel will ignite and that would lead to a massive release of radioactive material,” nuclear safety expert John Large told the Ecologist magazine. “I am very disturbed at the run-down condition of the structures and support services. In my opinion there is a significant risk that the system could fail.
energy  environment  nuclear  uk  sellafield  magnox  seagulls  time  long-now 
october 2014 by jm
Inside a Chinese Bitcoin Mine
The mining operation resides on an old, repurposed factory floor, and contains 2500 machines hashing away at 230 Gh/s, each. (That’s 230 billion calculations per second, per unit). [...] The operators told me that the power bill of this specific operation is in excess of ¥400,000 per month [..] about $60,000 USD.
currency  china  economics  bitcoin  power  environment  green  mining  datacenters 
august 2014 by jm
An Taisce Fundamentally Opposes New Dublin City Council's Bizarre Plan To End Street Cleaning Services
No holds barred:
Speaking today, spokesman Charles Stanley-Smith said; "This idea is insane. This area has suffered from dumping due to a lack of enforcement - yet the council now propose to effectively withdraw services altogether.  As numerous studies such as 'the broken window hypothesis' indicate, where a small problem is left un-tackled it is likely to become far worse rather than better. In other words, rather than increase enforcement to solve the problem, Dublin City Council is going to remove enforcement.  How will this deal with the problem?  Imagine if that logic were applied to crime; would the removal of police services in an area help resolve criminal behaviour - or increase it? The answer is obvious."
an-taisce  environment  cleaning  dublin  ireland  dcc  rubbish  trash  society  d1 
april 2013 by jm

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