Posts tagged “Nature”

  • “Rapid Arctic Thawing Could be Economic Timebomb”

    August 1, 2013

    2013-07-28-arcticvoicescover

    In an article published on July 24th, The Guardian discusses the accelerated melting of Arctic sea ice. The article is in response to a recent scientific report examining the imminent economic catastrophes of the sea ice phenomenon.

    The study focuses specifically on the dangerous release of methane from melting permafrost. Methane, which is approximately 25x more powerful at trapping heat in the Earth’s atmosphere than carbon dioxide, would be disastrous if released at all, and “could come with a $60tn global price tag” if released in a giant “pulse.”

    The article explains that economists aren’t taking climate change ramifications seriously, though melting sea ice alone could completely “undermined the global financial system.” Furthermore, “much of those costs would be borne by developing countries in the form of extreme weather, flooding and impacts on health and agricultural production.”

    In 2012, Arctic ice covered only 40% of the area it did in the 1970s.

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  • Subhankar Banerjee’s Article “Laughing Matters: U.S. Government vs. Voices of Conscience”

    June 20, 2013

    The Huffington Post featured a wonderful article yesterday by Subhankar Banerjee. In it, Banerjee recounts his frustration with the government’s attempts to silence dissent. He argues that when left with nothing else, when voices are silenced, we can tell the truth with humor.Banerjee_ArcticVoices_coverFINAL

    Banerjee cites his “Climate-Silence Paradox,” whereby the government fears civil unrest provoked by anthropogenic climate change, but rather than working to remedy climate change, it pools its efforts into hiding it. Dissent from activists is monitored and contained in order to continue raking in profits from environmental exploitation.

    He says, “Increasingly, it is the government that has become a public contractor–for private corporations–to provide security, with public money–by tracking environmental activists” instead of the other way around. “It isn’t news to many of us, but it sure sends a chilling message: peaceful activism that disrupts business-as-usual will not be tolerated.”

    Inspired by rebellious thinkers and artists like John Heartfield, Banerjee hopes that humor will be used increasingly to challenge such instances of abusive power.

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