It's Climate Change I tell'ya!! IT'S CLIMATE CHANGE!!

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
27,387
780
113
Internal audit: Federal climate bureau spends $615 million
Author of the article:postmedia News
Publishing date:Mar 08, 2021 • 21 hours ago • 1 minute read • comment bubble5 Comments
Internal auditors have put a whopping $615-million price tag on the 2020 operations of the environment department’s Pan-Canadian Framework Implementation Branch, essentially a federal climate bureau.
Internal auditors have put a whopping $615-million price tag on the 2020 operations of the environment department’s Pan-Canadian Framework Implementation Branch, essentially a federal climate bureau. PHOTO BY ISTOCK /GETTY IMAGES
Article content
Internal auditors have put a whopping $615-million price tag on the 2020 operations of the environment department’s Pan-Canadian Framework Implementation Branch, essentially a federal climate bureau.

And apparently that doesn’t include $800,000 annually for eight managers to monitor carbon offset regulations according to Blacklock’s Reporter.

Canadians are driving less, and aren't planning to buy a new vehicle soon
Trackerdslogo
The branch’s office had 83 employees and spent $614,897,338 including $605 million on grants and subsidies, $7.9 million on salaries and $1.8 million for overhead and administration.

And even more money is required to manage a voluntary Federal Greenhouse Gas Offset System.

Another eight people are needed to monitor emissions there said Peter Lamey, the director of issues management for the Environment Department.

Employees would make sure that industries volunteering for the program “achieve real, additional, quantified, verified, unique and permanent” emission cuts.

The Offset System would allow industries to buy and swap carbon credits in a location and way that wasn’t explained.


“It is challenging to forecast the extent to which the proposed regulations would lead to net greenhouse gas reductions,” said the analysis statement.

“The Federal Greenhouse Gas Offset System is another tool we’re using to combat climate change and create a cleaner, healthier future,” Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson said in a statement.

“The system will encourage cost-effective climate emission reductions right here in Canada.”
 
  • Wow
Reactions: Twin_Moose

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
27,387
780
113
Did iceburg carry Arctic walrus to Ireland?
Author of the article:postmedia News
Publishing date:Mar 17, 2021 • 12 hours ago • 1 minute read • comment bubbleJoin the conversation
An Arctic walrus, like this one, might have fallen asleep on an iceberg and ended up in Ireland.
An Arctic walrus, like this one, might have fallen asleep on an iceberg and ended up in Ireland. PHOTO BY FILES /FILES
Article content
An Arctic walrus ended up in Ireland, after possibly taking a nap.

The Independent reported Alan Houlihan and his five-year-old daughter, Muireann, noticed an Arctic walrus on Ireland’s Valentia Island.


“He kind of jumped up on the rocks. He was massive. He was about the size of a bull or a cow, pretty similar in size. He’s big, big,” Houlihan told the Independent.

How did the walrus get so far from his home in the North Pole?

Kevin Flannery, Dingle Oceanworld Aquarium, told the Independent that the walrus, which is probably a juvenile, probably fell asleep on an iceberg that melted off the Greenland shelf and was carried to Ireland. Either that, or it was looking for a pot of gold.
“He would be pretty tired and pretty hungry at this stage. That is usually what happens to them is that they fall asleep on an iceberg and then get carried off from the Arctic,” Flannery said.
1616060791358.png
 

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
27,387
780
113
Canada's main opposition party members reject proposal to recognize climate change as real
Author of the article:Reuters
Reuters
Publishing date:Mar 20, 2021 • 9 hours ago • 1 minute read • comment bubble5 Comments
Canada's Conservative Party leader Erin O'Toole speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada February 3, 2021.
Canada's Conservative Party leader Erin O'Toole speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada February 3, 2021. PHOTO BY BLAIR GABLE /REUTERS
Article content
TORONTO — Canada’s main opposition Conservative Party members on Saturday voted down a proposal to recognize climate change as real, in a blow to the new party leader’s efforts to embrace environment-friendly policies ahead of a likely federal election this year.

The rejected motion included the willingness to act against climate risks and to make highly polluting Canadian businesses take more responsibility to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.


Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole had urged party members on Friday to rally around an ambitious climate agenda to avoid a defeat at the hands of Liberals. He asked members to be open to new ideas if they were serious about toppling Liberals in the next election, even if that goes against party’s conventional thinking and said he doesn’t want Conservative candidates to be branded as “climate change deniers.”

Yet, the Conservative delegates rejected the policy shift by 54% to 46%.

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content

Climate change has been a polarizing issue in the last election campaign. While Trudeau stresses that the environment is a priority, Canada has failed to meet any of its climate pledges amid resistance from politicians who say the targets threaten the oil industry’s future.

Canada is the world’s fourth-largest oil producer and one of the highest emitters of greenhouse gases on a per capita basis and Prime Minister Trudeau’s Liberal Party supporters rank it among their top concerns. U.S. President Joe Biden’s aggressive climate policies are expected to galvanize Canada to march in step with Washington’s tough measures to avoid being disadvantaged.
 

pgs

Hall of Fame Member
Nov 29, 2008
20,759
1,576
113
B.C.
Did iceburg carry Arctic walrus to Ireland?
Author of the article:postmedia News
Publishing date:Mar 17, 2021 • 12 hours ago • 1 minute read • comment bubbleJoin the conversation
An Arctic walrus, like this one, might have fallen asleep on an iceberg and ended up in Ireland.
An Arctic walrus, like this one, might have fallen asleep on an iceberg and ended up in Ireland. PHOTO BY FILES /FILES
Article content
An Arctic walrus ended up in Ireland, after possibly taking a nap.

The Independent reported Alan Houlihan and his five-year-old daughter, Muireann, noticed an Arctic walrus on Ireland’s Valentia Island.


“He kind of jumped up on the rocks. He was massive. He was about the size of a bull or a cow, pretty similar in size. He’s big, big,” Houlihan told the Independent.

How did the walrus get so far from his home in the North Pole?

Kevin Flannery, Dingle Oceanworld Aquarium, told the Independent that the walrus, which is probably a juvenile, probably fell asleep on an iceberg that melted off the Greenland shelf and was carried to Ireland. Either that, or it was looking for a pot of gold.
“He would be pretty tired and pretty hungry at this stage. That is usually what happens to them is that they fall asleep on an iceberg and then get carried off from the Arctic,” Flannery said.
View attachment 7098
Long swim home .
 

pgs

Hall of Fame Member
Nov 29, 2008
20,759
1,576
113
B.C.
Canada's main opposition party members reject proposal to recognize climate change as real
Author of the article:Reuters
Reuters
Publishing date:Mar 20, 2021 • 9 hours ago • 1 minute read • comment bubble5 Comments
Canada's Conservative Party leader Erin O'Toole speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada February 3, 2021.
Canada's Conservative Party leader Erin O'Toole speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada February 3, 2021. PHOTO BY BLAIR GABLE /REUTERS
Article content
TORONTO — Canada’s main opposition Conservative Party members on Saturday voted down a proposal to recognize climate change as real, in a blow to the new party leader’s efforts to embrace environment-friendly policies ahead of a likely federal election this year.

The rejected motion included the willingness to act against climate risks and to make highly polluting Canadian businesses take more responsibility to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.


Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole had urged party members on Friday to rally around an ambitious climate agenda to avoid a defeat at the hands of Liberals. He asked members to be open to new ideas if they were serious about toppling Liberals in the next election, even if that goes against party’s conventional thinking and said he doesn’t want Conservative candidates to be branded as “climate change deniers.”

Yet, the Conservative delegates rejected the policy shift by 54% to 46%.

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content

Climate change has been a polarizing issue in the last election campaign. While Trudeau stresses that the environment is a priority, Canada has failed to meet any of its climate pledges amid resistance from politicians who say the targets threaten the oil industry’s future.

Canada is the world’s fourth-largest oil producer and one of the highest emitters of greenhouse gases on a per capita basis and Prime Minister Trudeau’s Liberal Party supporters rank it among their top concerns. U.S. President Joe Biden’s aggressive climate policies are expected to galvanize Canada to march in step with Washington’s tough measures to avoid being disadvantaged.
Good on them , someone has to push back .
 

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
27,387
780
113
In split decision, Supreme Court says federal carbon price is constitutional
Author of the article:Canadian Press
Canadian Press
Mia Rabson
Publishing date:Mar 25, 2021 • 10 hours ago • 3 minute read • 161 Comments
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa March 23, 2021.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa March 23, 2021. PHOTO BY BLAIR GABLE /REUTERS
Article content
OTTAWA — The Supreme Court of Canada says the federal carbon price is entirely constitutional.

The split decision upholds a pivotal part of the Liberal climate-change plan, accounting for at least one-third of the emissions Canada aims to cut over the next decade.


Chief Justice Richard Wagner says in the written ruling that climate change is a real danger and evidence shows a price on pollution is a critical element in addressing it.

“It is a threat of the highest order to the country, and indeed to the world,” Wagner wrote for six of the nine judges.

Given that, said Wagner, Canada’s evidence that this is a matter of national concern, is sound.

“The undisputed existence of a threat to the future of humanity cannot be ignored,” he wrote.


Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson issued an immediate statement lauding the decision as “a win for the millions of Canadians who believe we must build a prosperous economy that fights climate change.”

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
“The question is whether this decision will put an end to the efforts of Conservative politicians fighting climate action in court, and whether they will join Canadians in fighting climate change.”

The onus was on the federal government to prove to the court that this is an issue of national concern that would allow it to take control of the matter rather than leaving it to the provinces.

The majority of the court found the federal government did that, noting all parties, including the provinces challenging the law, agreed climate change is “an existential challenge.”

“This context, on its own, provides some assurance that in the case at bar, Canada is not seeking to invoke the national concern doctrine too lightly,” Wagner wrote.

Wagner also wrote provinces can’t set minimum national standards on their own and if even one province fails to reduce its emissions, that could have an inordinate impact on other provinces.

He noted that the three provinces that challenged the ruling also withdrew from the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change. That agreement, signed in 2016, agreed to set a national carbon price.

“When provinces that are collectively responsible for more than two-thirds of Canada’s total GHG emissions opt out of a cooperative scheme, this illustrates the stark limitations of a non-binding cooperative approach,” he wrote.

That left the remaining provinces, responsible for only one-third of Canada’s total emissions, “vulnerable to the consequences of the lion’s share of the emissions being generated by the non-participating provinces.”

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
He also said climate change in Canada is having a disproportionate impact on the Canadian Arctic, coastal communities and Indigenous territories.

Justice Suzanne Cote dissented in part, agreeing climate change is an issue of national concern but taking issue with the power the federal cabinet gave itself to adjust the law’s scope, including which fuels the price would apply to.

Justices Malcolm Rowe and Russell Brown dissented with the entire decision, arguing Canada had not shown that climate change reaches the level of national concern. They objected that the precedent the majority’s decision sets would allow Ottawa to set minimum national standards in all areas of provincial jurisdiction.

Wagner pushed back, finding there is a limited scope for national standards that is unchanged by this ruling.

Canada implemented the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act in 2019, setting a minimum price on carbon emissions in provinces that don’t have equivalent provincial prices, a law that was challenged by Saskatchewan, Ontario and Alberta.

The program applies a price per tonne to fuel purchases by individuals and businesses with lower emissions, and on part of the actual emissions produced by entities with large emissions, such as pipelines, manufacturing plants and coal-fired power plants.

The federal fuel-input charge applies in Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta, while the federal charge for big emitters currently covers only Manitoba and Prince Edward Island.

All other provinces have systems that meet the federal threshold.

The territories adopted the federal fuel charge.
 

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
27,387
780
113
GOLDSTEIN: Trudeau's carbon tax is legal — it's just a bad and ineffective law
Author of the article:Lorrie Goldstein
Publishing date:Mar 25, 2021 • 3 hours ago • 3 minute read • 22 Comments
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a climate change rally at the Danforth Music Hall on March 4, 2019.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a climate change rally at the Danforth Music Hall on March 4, 2019. PHOTO BY VERONICA HENRI /Toronto Sun
Article content
The Supreme Court of Canada’s 6-3 ruling Thursday tells us Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act is constitutional, not that it’s a good law.

That wasn’t the job of the court.


It ruled that under the “peace, order and good government” clause of the constitution, climate change poses, in the words of Chief Justice Richard Wagner, “a grave threat to humanity’s future,” meriting action by the federal government rather than leaving decisions to the provinces.

Moving back into the real world, in order to do our part to save humanity from catastrophic human-induced climate change, according to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Canada will have to wipe out the equivalent of our entire oil and gas sector and almost all of our transportation sector in nine years.

Seriously.


The IPCC says to avoid catastrophic, human-induced climate change (not “climate change,” there’s always been climate change) our industrial greenhouse gas emissions, along with the rest of the world’s, must fall by about 45% compared to 2010 levels by 2030.

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
This on the way to net zero emissions by 2050, which will give humanity a fighting chance, according to the IPCC, of limiting the rise in average global temperature to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial times, by the end of this century.

From there, the math is simple.

Canada’s emissions in 2010 were 691 million tonnes annually.

A 45% reduction by 2030 would cut them to 380 million tonnes annually.

The latest data from the federal government (2018) puts our annual emissions at 729 million tonnes annually, so we have to cut 349 million tonnes annually in nine years.

MORE ON THIS TOPIC

This Jan. 26, 2009 file photo shows the exhaust pipe of a car in Erfurt, Germany.
GOLDSTEIN: U.S. exceeds 2020 climate target that Canada missed
Stacks of Canadian currency.
GOLDSTEIN: Carbon tax will cost 200,000 jobs, $1,800 per worker, says study
Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, wearing a protective face mask, attends a news conference, as efforts continue to help slow the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada March 5, 2021.
GOLDSTEIN: Trudeau has judged us and found us wanting

Again, according to the lasted federal government data, that’s the equivalent of 100% of the annual emissions from Canada’s oil and gas industry (193 Mt annually), and 84% of our transportation sector (156 Mt annually).

So, no oil, no gas, no gasoline-powered vehicles (or the equivalent) within nine years, and we do our part to save humanity.

As long as the rest of the world does the same thing, since we’re only responsible for 1.6% of global emissions.

No one seriously believes this is going to happen, including Trudeau.

His latest climate change plan — it keeps changing — which includes raising his carbon tax/price to $40 per tonne of emissions on April 1, up from the current $30 per tonne and rising to $170 per tonne in 2030 — is to reduce our emissions to 503 million tonnes annually by 2030.

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
That would be a reduction of 226 million tonnes of emissions annually from current levels (729 million tonnes as of 2018) by 2030.


Not that it will save humanity.

But it would wipe out the equivalent of our entire oil and gas sector (193 million tonnes annually) plus 52% of the electricity sector (33 million tonnes annually) in nine years.

But enough of fantasies.

In the real world, carbon pricing is not a plan to save humanity — it’s a sin tax similar to taxes on alcohol and tobacco.

Only in this case the sin is using fossil fuel energy to live in a big, cold, northern, sparsely populated country with significant fossil fuel resources.

If you believe humanity faces an imminent threat to its existence from human-induced climate change, then you will presumably be happy with the idea of symbolically pretending to save the planet by paying more for the sin of living in Canada.

If you don’t, you won’t.

lgoldstein@postmedia.com
 
  • Like
Reactions: Dixie Cup

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
27,387
780
113
LILLEY: Supreme Court sets dangerous precedent with carbon tax ruling
Author of the article:Brian Lilley
Publishing date:Mar 25, 2021 • 3 hours ago • 3 minute read • 38 Comments
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attends a news conference at Rideau Cottage, as efforts continue to help slow the spread of COVID-19, in Ottawa, Nov. 20, 2020.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attends a news conference at Rideau Cottage, as efforts continue to help slow the spread of COVID-19, in Ottawa, Nov. 20, 2020. PHOTO BY BLAIR GABLE /REUTERS
Article content
Is there anything that could stop the federal government from imposing its will on every province in the country on any given issue?

The most truthful answer would be only the whim of the Supreme Court.


Thursday’s 6-3 decision from the Supreme Court upholding the legality of the Trudeau government’s carbon tax may be cheered by those who support the policy but the way the court got there should worry everyone who values Canada’s federation. This decision sets the stage for an ever-expanding federal government taking over areas of provincial jurisdiction.

Let’s be clear, I oppose a carbon tax but would have no argument other than it being bad policy if the Trudeau government had gone about this the easy way and used their constitutional taxing powers. Instead, they brought us the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act.

The legislation, and now the Supreme Court decision that has upheld it, has set the stage for the end of cooperative federalism in this country. In her dissenting opinion, Justice Suzanne Côté was scathing on the power the legislation grants to cabinet for example.

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content

“I am of the view that certain parts of the Act are so inconsistent with our system of democracy that they are independently unconstitutional,” Justice Côté wrote.

The ability of cabinet rather than Parliament to rewrite the act that underlies the carbon tax, to set the rate, decide where it applies and other measures violate the rule of law, the constitution and attack provincial powers, Côté states.

“The result is a permanent and significant expansion of federal power at the expense of provincial legislative authority unsanctioned by our Constitution,” Côté wrote.

In his dissent, Justice Russell Brown states that this act – and by extension the majority ruling upholding it – make constitutional changes that no province asked for.

“This is a model of federalism that rejects the Constitution and re-writes the rules of Confederation. Its implications go far beyond the Act, opening the door to federal intrusion by way of the imposition of national standards into all areas of provincial jurisdiction,” Brown wrote.

MORE ON THIS TOPIC

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a climate change rally at the Danforth Music Hall on March 4, 2019.
GOLDSTEIN: Trudeau's carbon tax is legal — it's just a bad and ineffective law
Stacks of Canadian currency.
GOLDSTEIN: Carbon tax will cost 200,000 jobs, $1,800 per worker, says study
Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada want to change your mind about how you see these federal institutions and they plan on doing it by hiring social media influencers.
LILLEY: Health Canada to use influencers to target you on social media

In his majority decision, Chief Justice Richard Wagner accepts the federal government’s assertion that the law is justified under the “peace, order and good government” clause of the constitution — a catch-all if ever there was one — and upheld on the basis that it is in the national interest.

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
Wagner writes that, “federal jurisdiction is necessitated by the provinces’ inability to address the matter as a whole through cooperation.”

There are many areas where the federal government could make that argument to assert jurisdiction and Wagner’s ruling will let them do it.


Right now, in the middle of a pandemic, Prime Minister Trudeau is talking about national standards in areas of clear provincial jurisdiction such as long-term care homes. This ruling sets a judicial precedent for him to ignore the constitution, impose his will on provinces and use the same arguments in court once more.

Supporters of Trudeau may like this ruling because it gets them what they want, a carbon tax. They may like the idea of Trudeau imposing national standards on long-term care homes, on local schools and on road construction just because they support him.

There is a warning often cited in politics though, if you don’t want your opponent to wield a certain power, don’t give it to yourself. Those cheering on this decision and the sweeping power grab it upholds should ask if they would have been happy with Stephen Harper doing this or in Erin O’Toole assuming such powers on another issue in the future.

If the answer is no, then they shouldn’t like the idea of Trudeau being able to have them.

This decision was the wrong one but, sadly, we will have to live with it and the consequences arising from it for years to come.

blilley@postmedia.com
 

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
27,387
780
113
Google Maps to start directing drivers to 'eco-friendly' routes in U.S.
Author of the article:Reuters
Reuters
Paresh Dave
Publishing date:Mar 30, 2021 • 21 hours ago • 1 minute read • Join the conversation
The brand logo of Alphabet Inc's Google is seen outside its office in Beijing, China August 8, 2018. Picture taken with a fisheye lens.
The brand logo of Alphabet Inc's Google is seen outside its office in Beijing, China August 8, 2018. Picture taken with a fisheye lens. PHOTO BY THOMAS PETER /REUTERS
Article content
Google’s Maps app will start directing drivers along routes estimated to generate the lowest carbon emissions based on traffic, slopes and other factors, the company announced on Tuesday.

Google, an Alphabet Inc unit, said the feature would launch later this year in the U.S. and eventually reach other countries as part of its commitment to help combat climate change through its services.


Unless users opt out, the default route will be the “eco-friendly” one if comparable options take about the same time, Google said. When alternatives are significantly faster, Google will offer choices and let users compare estimated emissions.

“What we are seeing is for around half of routes, we are able to find an option more eco-friendly with minimal or no time-cost tradeoff,” Russell Dicker, a director of product at Google, told reporters on Monday.

Google said it derives emissions relative estimates by testing across different types of vehicles and road types, drawing on insights from the U.S. government’s National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL). Road grade data comes from its Street View cars as well as aerial and satellite imagery.

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content

The potential effect on emissions from the feature is unclear. But in a study of 20 people at California State University, Long Beach, university researchers last year found participants were more inclined to consider carbon emissions in route selection after testing an app that showed estimates.

Google’s announcement included additional climate-focused changes. From June, it will start warning drivers about to travel through low emissions zones where some vehicles are restricted in Germany, France, the Netherlands, Spain and the U.K.

In the coming months, Maps app users will be able to compare car, biking, public transit and other travel options in one place instead of toggling between different sections.
 

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
27,387
780
113
Kyoto's earliest cherry blooms in 1,200 years point to climate change: Scientist
Author of the article:Reuters
Reuters
Aaron Sheldrick
Publishing date:Mar 31, 2021 • 3 hours ago • 1 minute read • Join the conversation
A "Somei Yoshino" cherry tree blossoms in Kyoto, Japan in this photo taken by Kyodo March 16, 2021.
A "Somei Yoshino" cherry tree blossoms in Kyoto, Japan in this photo taken by Kyodo March 16, 2021. PHOTO BY KYODO /REUTERS
Article content
TOKYO — The famous pink cherry blossoms of Kyoto reached full bloom this year on March 26, the earliest date in the 12 centuries since records began, according to a Japanese university.

The earlier flowering indicates climate change, said Yasuyuki Aono, a professor of environmental science at Osaka Prefectural University, who has compiled a database of records of the full blooms over the centuries.


Global temperatures in 2020 were among the highest on record and rivalled 2016 as the hottest year ever, according to international data compiled by the World Meteorological Organization and released in January this year.

“As the temperatures rise the onset of flowering is earlier,” Aono told Reuters in a Zoom interview.

Osaka University records include court documents from Imperial Kyoto, the ancient capital of Japan, as well as medieval diaries.

Cherry blossoms have long historical and cultural roots in Japan, heralding spring and inspiring artists and poets through the centuries.

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
In modern times, people gather under the cherry blooms every spring for hanami (blossom-viewing) parties that are often well lubricated with sake and can last for days.


With a state of emergency to curb coronavirus infections lifted across all areas of the country many people flocked to popular viewing locations last weekend, although the numbers were lower than in normal years.

Kyoto, no longer the Japanese capital but a beacon of Japanese culture and manners, has long been famous for its temples and blossoms, which been a valuable tool for observing long-term changes in mean temperatures.

Scientists have often pointed to the earlier flowering times of species such as cherry blossoms as indicators of global warming. The Kyoto record is described in one study as “probably the longest annual record” of biological life cycles from anywhere in the world.
1617209158918.png
 

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
27,387
780
113
GOLDSTEIN: UN's cure for climate change -- 10 more years of recessions
Author of the article:Lorrie Goldstein
Publishing date:Apr 02, 2021 • 3 hours ago • 3 minute read • 10 Comments
In this file photo taken on September 24, 2019 the United Nations logo is seen at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.
In this file photo taken on September 24, 2019 the United Nations logo is seen at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. PHOTO BY ANGELA WEISS /AFP via Getty Images
Article content
To understand the fantasy world in which policies about climate change are carried out today by governments around the world, including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government, consider the following.

In order to address human-induced climate change, according to the United Nations, the global economy will have to undergo a decade of annual economic recessions worse than the one caused by the COVID-19 pandemic last year.


Global industrial greenhouse gas emissions dropped by an estimated 7% in 2020, or by 2.4 billion tonnes compared to 2019, because of the worldwide economic lockdowns caused by COVID-19.

That’s the largest annual decrease in greenhouse gas emissions since the end of the Second World War, including the last global recession in 2008-09 that began with the subprime mortgage derivative scandal in the U.S.

MORE ON THIS TOPIC

A man walks near a coal-fired power plant in Harbin, Heilongjiang province, China on November 27, 2019.
GOLDSTEIN: We're China's patsies on climate change
Protesters hold banners reading
GOLDSTEIN: We gambled on the wrong threat — climate change
In this file photo taken on July 10, 2018, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau addresses a joint press conference with his Latvian counterpart following their meeting in Riga, Latvia.
GOLDSTEIN: Climate change — a decade of broken promises and failures

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
But the UN says to avert what it describes as catastrophic climate change (a global temperature increase of more than 1.5C by the end of this century), global emissions will have to decrease by 7.6% annually between 2021 and 2030.

This on the way to net zero emissions in 2050.

The UN has already said emission reductions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic last year are insignificant in terms of what needs to be done.

That’s the problem with the UN and its massive, jet-setting, free-loading, greenhouse-gas-spewing bureaucracy — it lives in an alternate reality from the real world.

Imagine the devastating unemployment and global economic suffering that would be caused by 10 consecutive years of recessions worse than what just happened in 2020 because of COVID-19.


In fact, emissions were already starting to increase again in the latter half of 2020 and will continue to do so as the global economy recovers from the COVID-19 recession, which is exactly what happened following the 2008-09 global recession.

The only things that have ever rapidly and dramatically slowed the annual increase in global emissions in the modern era have been economic recessions.

The reason is that during a recession people have less money to spend, so they buy fewer goods and services, almost all of which are provided, created, manufactured, grown and/or transported using fossil fuel energy.

(This is also the reason why carbon taxes, directly and indirectly, raise the cost of almost everything.)

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
When Trudeau and, for that matter, Conservative leader Erin O’Toole, say they are going to “make the polluters pay” for emitting industrial greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, what they mean is they are going to make us pay, because we are the “polluters.”


Collectively, we create the global demand for goods and services that cause fossil fuel emissions to rise — many of which are necessities such as food, clothing, shelter and transportation.

This is also why the “great reset” espoused by Trudeau and other global elites is nonsense, given that a key part of it is to replace fossil fuel energy with green energy.

In fact, the last thing any nation needs to power itself out of a major recession is more green energy, such as expensive and unreliable wind and solar power.

The reason is that neither can provide base load power to the electricity grid on demand and have to be backed up by fossil fuel energy — such as natural gas power plants backing up the unreliable, intermittent power provided by wind turbines.

The only thing Trudeau’s “great reset” will do is prolong the recession, not shorten it.

lgoldstein@postmedia.com
 

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
27,387
780
113
 

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
27,387
780
113
Shrinking seagrass meadows store more carbon than forests, scientists say
Author of the article:Reuters
Reuters
Alessandra Prentice and Christophe Van Der Perre
Publishing date:Apr 08, 2021 • 12 hours ago • 4 minute read • Join the conversation
Seagrass are seen in the Indian Ocean above the world's largest seagrass meadow and one of the biggest carbon sinks in the high seas, at the Saya de Malha Bank within the Mascarene plateau, Mauritius, March 20, 2021.
Seagrass are seen in the Indian Ocean above the world's largest seagrass meadow and one of the biggest carbon sinks in the high seas, at the Saya de Malha Bank within the Mascarene plateau, Mauritius, March 20, 2021. PHOTO BY TOMMY TRENCHARD/GREENPEACE /Handout via REUTERS
Article content
SAYA DE MALHA BANK — Hundreds of miles from the nearest shore, ribbon-like fronds flutter in the ocean currents sweeping across an underwater mountain plateau the size of Switzerland.

A remote-powered camera glides through the sunlit, turquoise waters of this corner of the western Indian Ocean, capturing rare footage of what scientists believe is the world’s largest seagrass meadow.


Human activity is helping destroy the equivalent of a soccer field of these seagrasses every 30 minutes around the world, according to the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). And scientists are now racing to take stock of what remains.

“There are a lot of unknowns — even things as simple as how much seagrass we have,” said Oxford University earth observation scientist Gwilym Rowlands, who is helping the Seychelles government map the island nation’s seagrass and estimate how much carbon it stores.

“If you look at the map data for seagrass, there are huge holes” in what we know.

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
Seagrasses play a large role in regulating ocean environments, storing more than twice as much carbon from planet-warming carbon dioxide (CO2) per square mile as forests do on land, according to a 2012 study in the journal Nature Geoscience.

Countries that hope to earn credit toward bringing down their CO2 emissions could tally their seagrasses and the carbon they store, a first step toward accrediting carbon offsets for eventual trading on an open market. The grasses also curb the acidity of surrounding waters — an especially important function as the ocean absorbs more CO2 from the atmosphere and becomes more acidic.

But seagrasses provide some buffer from acidification, which can damage animals’ shells and disrupt fish behaviors. In one study published March 31 in the journal Global Change Biology, scientists at the University of California, Davis, found that seagrasses dotted along the California coast could reduce local acidity by up to 30% for extended periods.

The plants also help clean polluted water, support fisheries, protect coasts from erosion, and trap micro-plastics, said the study’s lead author Aurora Ricart.

“What is even cooler is that these habitats are present everywhere,” she said.

SEAGRASS AS CLIMATE ALLY

While most seagrasses fringe coastlines around the world, the shallowness of Saya de Malha allows sunlight to filter to the seabed, creating an aquatic prairie in the Indian Ocean that provides shelter, nurseries and feeding grounds for thousands of marine species.

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
The bank’s isolation has helped protect it from coastal threats, including pollution and dredging. But even such remote stretches of international waters face increasing incursions from shipping and industrial fishing.

In March, scientists from institutions including Britain’s Exeter University travelled with Greenpeace on an expedition to collect some of the first field data on the area’s wildlife, including its little-studied beds of seagrass.

With the boat bobbing for days above the plateau, the researchers gathered bits of grass floating in the water, tweezering them into bottles for analysis back on shore.


Data on seagrass meadows are patchy, but research so far estimates the grasses cover over 300,000 square km (115,000 square miles), distributed across all continents apart from Antarctica, according to UNEP. That would be an area the size of Italy.

It is not yet known how much carbon is locked into Saya de Malha, but globally the tangled roots of seagrasses are estimated to trap over 10% of the carbon buried in ocean sediment per year.

“This has massive implications for the (world’s) climate change mitigation efforts,” said Dimos Traganos, lead scientist on a German Aerospace Center project developing software to improve seagrass tracking using satellite imagery and other data. That effort has been helped by recent advances in cloud computing and data storage, he said. “We are in such an exciting period.” Seagrass meadows are believed to be retreating around 7% per year globally, according to the most recent seagrass census published in a 2009 study in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. It notes the estimate was based on incomplete data available at the time.

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
The more closely studied areas illustrate the harm human activity can cause. Pollution from mining and damage by fisheries may have helped to eliminate 92% of mainland Britain’s seagrasses in over a century, according to a March 4 study in the journal Frontiers in Plant Science.

If still intact, these could have supported around 400 million fish and stored up to 11.5 million tonnes of carbon — equivalent to 3% of Britain’s CO2 emissions in 2017, the study said. This year, Seychelles began assessing its coastal seagrass carbon stock for the first time, and at least 10 countries have said seagrasses would play a part in their climate action plans, according to UNEP.

Seychelles and Mauritius, which have joint jurisdiction over the Saya de Malha’s seabed, should count up and care for the wealth of seagrass on their shared doorstep, said James Michel, who served 12 years as president of the Seychelles until 2016.

“Then we’ll be in a better position to know how to not only preserve it, but also to manage it to ensure that it is protected for the future.”

 

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
27,387
780
113
ODDS AND ENDS: Mushroom buildings and other offbeat offerings
Author of the article:Eddie Chau
Publishing date:Apr 10, 2021 • 2 hours ago • 3 minute read • Join the conversation
Champignons growing on a mushroom farm. Mushroom production industry.
Champignons growing on a mushroom farm. Mushroom production industry. PHOTO BY FILE PHOTO /Getty Images
Article content
COULD YOU LIVE IN A HOME MADE OF MUSHROOMS?

There’s a new neighbour who just moved in — we hear he’s a fungi.


Bad jokes aside, can you ever imagine living in a home that’s lined with walls made of mushrooms. According to The Verge, fungi is being used as a building material that’s a good alternative to environmentally harmful materials.

All in the name of climate change.

In an interview with The Verge, architect David Benjamin of the firm The Living said, “Our built environment needs these kinds of materials,” and he stated different countries have ambitious goals to tackle climate change, with mushroom building materials as a “jump-start” to progress.


Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
The building material is made with mycelium, which is a network from which mushrooms grow. The material is biodegradable and produces less carbon dioxide compared to traditional construction material.

While the mushroom-made material is still in its infancy, it’s showing potential as great insulation material as well as an alternative to concrete blocks, The Verge reported.
1618081493930.png
 

spaminator

Hall of Fame Member
Oct 26, 2009
27,387
780
113
A right to healthy environment included in proposed changes to CEPA: Wilkinson
Author of the article:Canadian Press
Canadian Press
Stephanie Taylor
Publishing date:Apr 13, 2021 • 1 hour ago • 2 minute read • Join the conversation
Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, attends a news conference at the Dominion Arboretum in Ottawa, Dec. 11, 2020.
Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, attends a news conference at the Dominion Arboretum in Ottawa, Dec. 11, 2020. PHOTO BY BLAIR GABLE /REUTERS / FILES
Article content
OTTAWA — The Liberal government is proposing long-awaited changes to an environmental protection law that includes a recognition every person living in Canada has a right to a healthy environment.

Officials with the department of Environment and Climate Change Canada say defining what a “healthy environment” means or how exactly that right could work within the Canadian Environment Protection Act will be determined through consultations.


It’s one of the proposed amendments the Liberals have put forward to the act in Bill C-28, tabled in the House of Commons Tuesday,

The 1999 law outlines how the federal government regulates toxic chemicals as well as other polluting materials, with the goal to protect the environment and people from their harmful effects.

Scientists and environmentalists have been calling on the Liberals to make what they say have been badly-need improvements to the law, such as requiring substance assessments to include the cumulative effects of repeated exposures.

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
A parliamentary committee on the environment studied the act, which has be reviewed every five years, and made 87 recommended changes.

Environment and Climate Change Minister Jonathan Wilkinson said around 35 of those recommendations made their way into the bill, including recognizing peoples’ right to a healthy environment.

“This is not symbolism,” Wilkinson told a virtual news conference from Vancouver.

“The legal right to a healthy environment will lead to stronger protections in tandem with the evolving science, especially for groups of people vulnerable to high levels of pollution, who live downwind or downstream.


This includes the Canadians who may be at greater risk of exposure or are more susceptible to the risks of chemicals.“

Tim Gray, executive director of Environmental Defence, applauds the bill’s commitment to look at how chemicals impact vulnerable populations, from pregnant women and children, to racialized or marginalized communities located nearby such facilities.

He said he hopes to see a right to a healthy environment mean there is a way Canadians can force the prosecution and suspension of a company’s ability to sell certain products in the event environmental laws are broken.

“You would use CEPA to determine whether or not some community’s disproportionally being impacted by a toxic chemical … whether or not like someone who’s selling a toxic skin whitening cream that is only being purchased by people with brown skin, whether those people’s rights are being violated,” said Gray.

Advertisement
STORY CONTINUES BELOW

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
Article content
Department officials say a developing a framework for how a right to a healthy environment will be considered within the act has to happen within two years, but that right will be confined to that legislation.

Gray said Tuesday’s proposed changes need more scrutiny, but believes other positive moves includes assessing the culminative impacts of chemicals and new labeling requirements for cleaning, cosmetics and furniture products.

One area where the bill is lacking, he says, is on improvements to enforcement.

“Enforcement is a problem, both in terms of how it’s required by the civil servants who do it, but also the access to the courts for citizens to fight toxins that are harming them,”

“I don’t see it addressed here at all.”