Showing Tag: "climate" (Show all posts)

Don’t blame God or nature. We’re the culprits (By David Suzuki)

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Friday, December 8, 2017, In : Climate change 
Don’t blame God or nature. We’re the culprits. 

By David Suzuki

Traditionally, we’ve labelled events over which we have no influence or control “acts of God” or “natural disasters.” But what’s “natural” about climate-induced disasters today?

Scientists call the interval since the Industrial Revolution the “Anthropocene,” a period when our species has become the major factor altering the biological, physical and chemical properties of the planet on a geological scale. Emp...

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The Paris climate deal won’t save us – our future depends on de-growth

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Wednesday, September 27, 2017, In : Global 

By Jason Hickel. From The Guardian. Published on July 3rd, 2017. 

When Donald Trump pulled the United States out of the Paris climate deal, the world reacted with outrage. And rightly so: the agreement represents a remarkable achievement in international diplomacy – a breakthrough after 20 years of failed climate negotiations. But as we rally to defend the Paris deal against the onslaught of an ill-informed bully, we need to resist the temptation to cast the agreement as some kind of saviour...

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Scientists made a detailed “roadmap” for meeting the Paris climate goals. It’s eye-opening

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Friday, April 7, 2017, In : Climate change 

Article by Brad Plumer 
  Mar 24, 2017  

Back in 2015, the world’s governments met in Paris and agreed to keep global warming below 2°C, to avoid the worst risks of a hotter planet. See here for background on why, but that’s the goal. For context, the planet’s warmed ~1°C since the 19th century.

One problem with framing the goal this way, though, is that it’s maddeningly abstract. What does staying below 2°C entail? Papers on this topic usually drone on about a “carbon budget” ...

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C40 Mayors agree to bold and concrete actions to meet Paris Agreement

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Thursday, January 5, 2017, In : Climate change 

One year after the critical Paris Climate Agreement, global mayors from the world’s megacities met in Mexico City from 30 November to 2 December 2016 at the C40 Mayors Summit to commit to turn the climate deal agreed by nation states from aspiration to action.

The mayors welcomed Anne Hidalgo, Mayor of Paris, as the group’s new chair and discussed findings from Deadline 2020: How Cities Will Get the Job Done, the critical research released by C40 in partnership with Arup. A...
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Fate of Earth’s Ice Comes Further Into Focus

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Sunday, January 4, 2015, In : Climate change 
HAPPY NEW YEAR!! 2015 is here and more effort is needed for our planet to survive (with us on it!).

Reproduced from The Climate Central. By Andrea Thompson.

The frigid, ice-covered expanses that make up Earth’s poles are some of the fastest warming parts of the planet as human activity drives up greenhouse gas levels in the atmosphere, altering the global climate.

What happens to all that ice isn’t just a concern for these remote, frozen wilds: The ice sheets that cover Greenland and Antarc...
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What's going on with Antarctic sea ice? Q&As by Science Magazine

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Saturday, October 11, 2014, In : Climate change 
What's going on with Antarctic sea ice?
A Q&As article reproduced from Science Magazine.

By Carolyn Gramling, staff writer for Science and editor of the In Brief section.

NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio/Cindy Starr. Antarctic sea ice extent reached a record high this year on 22 September, topping 20 million square kilometers for the first time since 1979, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center. (Average maximum extent from 1979 to 2014 is in red.)

Q: What’s happening wit...

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3 key takeaways from the UN Climate Summit (National Geographic)

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Saturday, September 27, 2014, In : Climate change 
I found that this article summarizes the key points of the climate discussion in a succinct and comprehensible way.
Reproduced from the National Geographic.

3 Key Takeaways From This Week's UN Climate Summit

A new global strategy on climate change? Not yet, but there was news.

By Elizabeth Shogren

Published September 24, 2014

NEW YORK—This week's United Nations Climate Summit didn't forge a new global strategy to stave off the most alarming effects of climate change, such as dramatic ...

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SD? SCD? SDGs? Post-2015? Focus on communities? YES!

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Sunday, September 21, 2014, In : Sustainable Development 
I'm back with some excellent resources and initiatives directly related to the ongoing discussions for the UN post-2015 development agenda and particularly the goals that promote sustainable community development.


Sustainable Development Solutions Network
Communitas Coalition for Sustainable Cities and Regions
PANDO | Sustainable Communities (collaboration network for researchers and practitioners)
ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability
UN Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform

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Lessons for Climate Change in the 2008 Recession

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Thursday, June 26, 2014, In : Climate change 
An interesting (and not so impartial) outlook on climate change, by Henry M. Paulson Jr., former US Secretary of the Treasury; reproduced from the New York Times online.

There is a time for weighing evidence and a time for acting. And if there’s one thing I’ve learned throughout my work in finance, government and conservation, it is to act before problems become too big to manage

For too many years, we failed to rein in the excesses building up in the nation’s financial markets. When ...

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Forests are crucial to green growth and sustainable societies (new UN report)

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Monday, March 31, 2014, In : Forests & Land Management 
Reproduced from:

The value of forests and tree-based ecosystems extends far beyond carbon sequestration; they are the foundation of sustainable societies. (Photo credit: Maria Spiliotopoulou, Nymfeo 2007)

A new report, launched in Jakarta, Indonesia on 21 March - the International Day of Forests – promotes REDD+ (*) and the Green Economy as together providing a new pathway to sustainable development that can benefit all nations. I...

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WHO: 7 million premature deaths annually linked to air pollution

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Thursday, March 27, 2014, In : Global 
25 MARCH 2014 | GENEVA
In new estimates released today, the World Health Organization reports that in 2012 around 7 million people died - one in eight of total global deaths – as a result of air pollution exposure. This finding more than doubles previous estimates and confirms that air pollution is now the world’s largest single environmental health risk. Reducing air pollution could save millions of lives.

New estimates

In particular, the new data reveal a stronger link between both indoor ...

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Volcanic eruptions may cause global warming slowdown (new study)

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Tuesday, February 25, 2014, In : Climate change 

=> article reproduced from Reuters and The Guardian (24 Feb. 2014).

Small volcanic eruptions help explain a hiatus in global warming this century by dimming sunlight and offsetting a rise in emissions of heat-trapping gases to record highs, a study showed on Sunday.

Eruptions of at least 17 volcanoes since 2000, including Nabro in Eritrea, Kasatochi in Alaska and Merapi in Indonesia, ejected sulphur whose sun-blocking effect had been largely ignored until now by climate scientists, it said.

The ...

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Climate Change Knowledge Portal, by the World Bank

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Wednesday, February 19, 2014, In : Climate change 
The World Bank
For Development Practitioners and Policy Makers

In an effort to serve as a 'one stop shop' for climate-related information, data, and tools, the World Bank created the Climate Change Knowledge Portal (CCKP), supported by the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery and others. The Portal provides an online tool for access to comprehensive global, regional, and country data related to climate change a...

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Google Earth new layer: local temperature data and global warming

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Tuesday, February 11, 2014, In : Climate change 

Google Earth: how much has global warming raised temperatures near you?

Reproduced from the Guardian.

If you've ever wondered how much global warming has raised local temperatures in your area or elsewhere on the globe, the 
University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit (UEA CRU) has just released a new interactive Google Earth layer that will let you answer this question with ease. UEA CRU is one of the scientific organizations that compile temperature data from around the world. Their tem...

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Six decades of warming earth (a 14'' NASA video)

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Sunday, February 2, 2014, In : Climate change 
This visualization shows how global temperatures have risen from 1950 through the end of 2013. Global warming is indeed happening. Time to face it and do our part to prevent it from continuing so.

NASA scientists say 2013 tied for the seventh warmest of any year since 1880, continuing a long-term trend of rising global temperatures. With the exception of 1998, the 10 warmest years in the 133-year record all have occurred since 2000, with 2010 and 2005 ranking as the hottest years on record.

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Does suburbanization undermine greenhouse gas benefits of urban population density?

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Tuesday, January 21, 2014, In : Energy & Sustainability 
This is a brief presentation of a new study on suburbanization and carbon footprint in dense cities. I read it on and, although I don't have access to the full journal article, I think that these results are very important in terms of sustainable development of urban areas. We shouldn't however jump to opposite conclusions ("what? now they tell us to build high and densely?"), because obviously sustainable city dwelling doesn't correspond to what we see in many cities such as Athens ...

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Business Innovation in a Living Economy, from Worldwatch Europe (Reports V)

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Sunday, December 29, 2013, In : Activities and Proposals 
One of the main puzzles of our time is how to avoid climate change and safeguard ecosystem health while simultaneously improving human wellbeing and enhancing social justice without destabilizing the economy.

Businesses have a very important role in the road towards a Living Economy – an economy that has as a goal to improve human wellbeing and quality of life, moving away from pointless consumerism, without compromising natural resources. How can business promote environmental and social su...

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4 News Outlets Ban Climate Change Deniers

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Tuesday, December 24, 2013, In : Climate change 
4 News Outlets Ban Climate Change Deniers

By Kevin Mathews, on

If a climate change denier has no place to voice his opinion, does he still make a sound?

Earlier this year, Care2 writer Beth Buczynski debated the merits of publications eliminating the opinions of climate skeptics from their pages. On the one hand, it never seems right to stifle discussion, but on the other hand, is there a point where the facts are so overwhelming and the consequences so catastrophic that it’s tim...

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The Climate Change Performance Index - Results 2014 (Reports IV)

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Thursday, December 19, 2013, In : Climate change 

A comparison of the 58 top CO2 emitting nations

The Climate Change Performance Index is an instrument supposed to enhance transparency in international climate politics. Its aim is to encourage political and social pressure on those countries which have, up to now, failed to take ambitious actions on climate protection as well as to highlight  countries with best-practice climate policies. On the basis of standardised criteria, the index evaluates and c...

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Turn Down the Heat - World Bank, June 2013 (Reports I)

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Thursday, December 12, 2013, In : Climate change 
With the report "Turn Down the Heat: Climate Extremes, Regional Impacts and the Case for Resilience", launched by the World Bank in June 2013, I'd like to initiate a series of blog posts presenting reports on environmental and sustainability issues, important for the whole world or a part of it.

In the report Turn Down the Heat: Climate Extremes, Regional Impacts, and the Case for Resilience, launched in June 2013, scientists look at the likely impacts on three vulnerable regions if the world ...

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Success stories from the EU's "The World you Like" Challenge!

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Sunday, November 10, 2013, In : Environment 

Across Europe, there are many initiatives on the ground contributing to a world we like, with a climate we like. They are truly inspirational and having a real impact in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. It is time to reward them. 

The World You Like Challenge wants creative and innovative minds from across the EU to put their low-carbon initiatives to the test and inspire others to follow suit.

The Challenge was launched in February 2013 and the winners have just been announced! Here are tw...

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Should we turn deserts into carbon-sucking tree plantations?

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Wednesday, August 21, 2013, In : Climate change 
Not all scientists agree that planting more and more trees can help with the climate change and CO2 problems, but here is an interesting idea about tree planting in deserts, presented at by John Upton.

To fight climate change, some scientists think we should vegetate the hell out of deserts. The latest such idea calls for large plantations of a hardy species of Central American tree to be planted in near-coastal desert areas and irrigated with desalinated water.

While forests soak up ...

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An article on coastal communities and habitat loss

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Tuesday, July 23, 2013, In : Climate change 

While this article alerts us on the dangers of coastal erosion due to habitat loss in the USA, just about the same predictions apply for the Mediterranean... Let us read carefully.

Here’s an easy way to protect coastal communities from rising seas and storms

By John Upton, from

Protecting nature is the best way of protecting ourselves from rising tides and storm surges, according to new research.

Sand dunes, wetlands, coral reefs, mangroves, oyster beds, and other shoreline...

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A projection on sea-level rise, in response to global warming (new study)

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Saturday, July 20, 2013, In : Climate change 
This article presents a new study, which, as the authors say, is "one of the first efforts at merging different analyses into a single projection" on how much the sea level will rise in the next several thousand years, for every degree C the planet warms.
No, it's not very far in the future, taking into account that most of the world continues "business as usual"!
(study conducted by the Oregon State University)

Scientists outline long-term sea-level rise in response to warming of planet

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Climate change is happening too quickly for species to adapt!

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Wednesday, July 17, 2013, In : Climate change 
Another interesting study on climate change impacts on biodiversity!
Here is the article from the Guardian, published on July 14, 2013.

Among the many strange mantras repeated by climate change deniers is the claim that even in an overheated, climate-altered planet, animals and plants will still survive by adapting to global warming. Corals, trees, birds, mammals and butterflies are already changing to the routine reality of global warming, it is argued.

Certainly, countless species have adapted...

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Canadian Green Building Council: "Seriously Green – Green Building"

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Monday, July 15, 2013, In : Climate change 
I recently watched a very interesting video, which was suggested as a course activity by the instructors of "Climate Literacy: Navigating Climate Change Conversations" ( and the University of British Columbia). I just love this course!

The video tackles an important climate change mitigation strategy, i.e. energy efficiency of buildings.


If you are interested in this topic, you can also visit the EU portal on energy efficient buildings: You will find plenty of ...
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US new report: Impacts of climate change to the energy sector

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Friday, July 12, 2013, In : Climate change 
An article from, showing how the US finally realised that climate change is happening; and that it has serious impacts! 

As President Obama said in his speech last month, climate change is happening -- and the effects are already being felt across the country. 2012 was the hottest year on record; the worst drought in generations covered more than half the country; record wildfires swept across western states; and an intensified Superstorm Sandy devastated communities in the East...

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just ... Do the Math!

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Saturday, July 6, 2013, In : Climate change 

An informative video on climate change, its impacts and what we can do. 
Created by*

* 350 parts per million is what many scientists, climate experts and progressive national governments are now saying is the safe upper limit for CO2 in our atmosphere.

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Forests, health and climate change: what is the way forward?

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Tuesday, July 2, 2013, In : Climate change 

Forests are essential to our survival and well-being. Forests clean our air, our water, our soil and they regulate our climate, amongst many other things. Trees and forests are not always associated with urban landscapes. However, there too they provide invaluable, often invisible, services. Simply by acting as 'green oasis' in our concrete jungles, they offer recreation and health services for many European citizens.

How many of us love strolling through parks and green spaces in cities, te...

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Climate change negotiations in 84 seconds (VERY worth watching)!

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Monday, June 24, 2013, In : Climate change 

The History of Climate Change Negotiations in 84 seconds!

An animation developed and produced in collaboration between the Center for International Climate and Environmental Research - Oslo and PetPunk with support from The Research Council of Norway.
I found it absolutely to the point (even the music is a perfect match)!!

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NASA Finds 2012 Sustained Long-Term Climate Warming Trend

Posted by Maria Spiliotopoulou on Friday, January 25, 2013, In : Various interesting stuff 

NASA scientists say 2012 was the ninth warmest of any year since 1880, continuing a long-term trend of rising global temperatures. With the exception of 1988, the nine warmest years in the 132-year record all have occurred since 2000, with 2010 and 2005 ranking as the hottest years on record.

NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) in New York, which monitors global surface temperatures on an ongoing basis, released an updated analysis Tuesday that compares temperatures around the gl...

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