Category Archives: Climate Change

Chicago mayor Emanuel posts EPA’s deleted climate change page

By Edward-Isaac Dovere  05/06/17

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s response to the Trump administration pulling down its website detailing information about climate change: putting up his own.

The new section of the City of Chicago’s website, launched this weekend, pulls data from the archived Environmental Protection Agency page, noting, “while this information may not be readily available on the agency’s webpage right now, here in Chicago we know climate change is real and we will continue to take action to fight it.” Emanuel is promising to build the site out more in the coming weeks, using city resources.

“The Trump administration can attempt to erase decades of work from scientists and federal employees on the reality of climate change, but burying your head in the sand doesn’t erase the problem,” Emanuel said.

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EPA website removes climate science site from public view after two decades

Reposted from The Washington Post
“Democracy Dies in Darkness”

April 29 at 8:28 AM

EPA

The Environmental Protection Agency headquarters.
(Photo by Matt McClain/ The Washington Post)

The Environmental Protection Agency announced Friday evening that its website would be “undergoing changes” to better represent the new direction the agency is taking, triggering the removal of several agency websites containing detailed climate data and scientific information.

One of the websites that appeared to be gone had been cited to challenge statements made by the EPA’s new administrator, Scott Pruitt. Another provided detailed information on the previous administration’s Clean Power Plan, including fact sheets about greenhouse gas emissions on the state and local levels and how different demographic groups were affected by such emissions.

The changes came less than 24 hours before thousands of protesters were set to march in Washington and around the country in support of political action to push back against the Trump administration’s rollbacks of former president Barack Obama’s climate policies.

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A Conversation Between Timothy Morton and Jeff VanderMeer

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THE SEEDS OF THIS CONVERSATION were planted when I saw an online announcement for Timothy Morton’s new book, Dark Ecology. Immediately I felt the cover design resonated with the amazing covers of Jeff VanderMeer’s Southern Reach trilogy. When I mentioned this to Tim at an academic conference, he said it was a sort of lovely and weird coincidence because he and Jeff had recently started communicating with each other — appreciating each other’s work, ideas, and aesthetics. 

Soon after, Gerry Canavan and I started collaborating on “Global Weirding,” a special issue of the academic journal Paradoxa, and we agreed that Jeff and Tim would make an engaging and provocative pair to feature in conversation with each other. In many ways, they both have a magical ability to produce extremely edgy and sophisticated work capable of reaching wide audiences well beyond academic and/or genre fiction coteries. Fortunately, they agreed to meet via Skype one morning in the summer of 2016. I opened the conversation by asking them to start with a statement on what they found engaging and illuminating in the other’s work and how they envision their work intersecting, and then I quietly recorded and observed as their friendly, loopy conversation veered around through Beatrix Potter, Surrealism, childhood experiences with tidal pools, fur-shedding cats, and uncanny orange juice.

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TIM MORTON: There’s a very, very strong overall feeling about the work that you do, Jeff. There’s a very dreamlike quality to it, and I like this quality very much. If I was going to use a word to describe it, I’d probably use Freud’s word “displacement.” There’s something around the corner all the time. You can’t quite put your finger on it, and maybe you’ll never be able to put your finger on it. It’s sort of disturbing, tantalizing, dreamlike, and there’s this overall feeling of losing a sense of obvious reference point, whereby the way that you’re dreaming and what you’re dreaming about are sort of weirdly melded together so you can’t tell which is which a little bit.

JEFF VANDERMEER: The interesting thing is I’m very much a writer who is both organic and mechanical. I believe in getting down a draft, which is very influenced by the subconscious, and then peering through it. After I wrote Annihilation, I started seeing reviews that mentioned your work in connection with it; that’s why I picked up Hyperobjects, and the thing that was fascinating to me is that it appealed to both the organic and the mechanical sides. The mechanical side made me understand what I had written better because the very term “hyperobject” kind of encapsulated what was going on organically in Annihilation.

Then, partly because I’m not a philosopher, but also because I’m interested in this subject, the book sent me on another delightful “down the rabbit hole” moment. In part because there were sections where I had to bulwark basic knowledge before I could go forward. And then there are other things that I know are received by my conscious mind, but my subconscious is working on breaking them down and reinventing them for future fiction. I always go through this process in which I have to trust my subconscious first, and I then have to understand what it was that I did, and then my fiction is informed by all of that; your book really helped me with that, which is really important in this context where I’m fairly sure there isn’t going to be a novel I write going forward that doesn’t deal with ecological themes in some way.

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Jeff VanderMeer and Storytelling in the Anthropocene, at DePaul

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by | March 15, 2017 · 20:06

Octopalypse

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Octopus in the parking garage is climate change’s canary in the coal mine

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CHICAGO CITY COUNCIL DISCUSSES DIVESTMENT FROM FOSSIL FUELS

By Chicago 350

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The Chicago City Council, led by the Progressive Caucus in partnership with a local grassroots chapter of 350.org, will consider full divestment of City funds from fossil fuel holdings. A resolution for divestment, co-sponsored by 39 aldermen, will be on the Committee on Finance’s agenda some time in February or March.  ***PLEASE NOTE: The hearing scheduled for February 21st was recently postponed.***

The resolution, which “require(s) divestment from stocks and bonds of Fossil Fuel Companies over the next 5 years and prohibit(s) investment in stock or bonds of Fossil Fuel Companies thereafter,” is the result of efforts by the Council’s Progressive Caucus and local grassroots organizations to take action on climate change. 350.org has led the divestment movement, which is the fastest growing divestment movement in history with 696 institutions divested (totaling an approximate value of $5.44 trillion dollars) in just 5 years.  Over a dozen local organizations have signed letters of endorsement for the resolution, including The Sierra Club, Chicago Recycling Coalition, Blacks in Green, 8th Day Center for Justice, and Chicago Youth Alliance for Climate Action.

While the City Council and organizers recognize divestment as only one part of successful climate change mitigation, divestment supporters aim to protect City finances against the projected declining value of fossil fuel stocks and bonds. As modern energy technologies displace fossil fuels in utilities and transportation, stocks tied to the previous century’s energy portfolio are expected to drop in value. Since the City of Chicago requires stable, long-term investments for its financial health, divestment supporters say, the City’s holdings must shift away from aging portfolios based on outdated energy sources.

“Climate change means deadly heat waves, such as the one that killed 739 vulnerable Chicagoans in the summer of 1995, a polluted Lake Michigan and dirty air. We cannot stand for this as representatives of the people and as stewards of their future,” said Alderman John Arena (45th Ward), a co-sponsor on the resolution and member of the Progressive Reform Caucus. “We must divest pensions from fossil fuels, and invest in clean energy.”

The full resolution is available at the Office of the City Clerk and online (https://chicago.legistar.com/LegislationDetail.aspx?ID=2908429&GUID=85803769-1BDB-4A93-A569-F9CA140C2216). Questions regarding local support for divestment should be directed to <350chicago350@gmail.com>. See facebook.com/Chicago350.org for more information regarding grassroots efforts towards divestment in Chicago.

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The Women’s Global Call for Climate Justice

WE ARE WOMEN AND GIRLS OF ALL AGES, IN ALL OUR DIVERSITY, FROM EVERY REGION OF THE WORLD;

We are gravely concerned about the lack of just and sufficient action on climate change by the world’s leaders;

We are concerned about the increasing number of disastrous mega storms that are killing people, eradicating species, and destroying ecosystems and livelihoods;

We are concerned about sea-level rise and disappearing land masses, in addition to the serious environmental and human casualties caused by droughts, desertification, ocean acidification, water salination, crop failures, air pollution, oil spills, plastics and other pollution, glacier melt, record warm summers and cold winters, and out-of season cyclones and tsunamis;

We are concerned about all women and the communities and environments in which we live, including those of us from indigenous lands and oceanic societies who have contributed the least to climate disruption but who are suffering the greatest impacts first and most intensely;

We refuse to allow corporate control of our planet, our rights, or sanction a world that prioritizes growth and greed over human rights, decent and equal work, healthy ecosystems and a just distribution of wealth;

We are concerned that governments of the world are moving too slowly, with too little effort, and without the ambition, commitment or financing that it will take to stop and reverse our global climate crisis;

We refuse to allow corporate control of our planet, our rights, or sanction a world that
prioritizes growth and greed over human rights, decent and equal work, healthy ecosystems and a just distribution of wealth;

And we are stunned, upset and outraged that our future, and the future of our children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, and of all living beings and ecosystems is being abandoned for short-term self-interest and a lack of vision, leadership, and political will;

Finally and critically, as women and girls, we are not only facing severe impacts, but we are central to the implementation of real solutions that produce real results.

Women must be full and equal partners in the fight to combat global climate chaos!

Women of the world have had enough. The time for Urgent Action is now. We are speaking Truth to Power. We are Demanding Change.

Together, we are creating a mass movement for climate justice. Together, we pledge to take action. We call on all women, all girls and all of our allies to join us in this pledge, to join our Women’s Global Call for Climate Justice.

Women and girls will express our concerns and deliver our demands for meaningful and just action on climate change at every level and in all possible arenas – local, regional, national and global.

We will take action everywhere – in our homes, neighborhoods, village squares, agricultural gardens, fishing grounds, sacred places, worship sites, community organizations, workplaces and schools.

We will make our presence known at our Parliaments, embassies and local government buildings; in corporate headquarters of carbon polluters and energy companies; at the ballot box, in the news media, on social media, and at the front doors of ALL those with the power to change the trajectory of climate injustice.

We will talk, sing, shout, stand, and sit. We will lobby, hold vigils, protest, blockade, and barricade. We will take action in the smallest villages, the largest cities, the highest mountains, in the oceans.

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