U.S and Russia Cooperation

The United States and Russia are using climate change mitigation talks as a means to collaborate despite background tensions. Relations between the United States and Russia are rife with election tampering accusations, cyberattacks and economic sanctions against one another. Some point to Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014 as the starting point for friction between Washington and Moscow. Recently, a presidential summit took place in Geneva, Switzerland. The United States’ president, Joe Biden, and Russia’s President, Vladimir Putin were able to agree upon a joint statement which establishes armed conflict risk reductions and shared goals against nuclear warfare. The new U.S.-Russia Presidential Joint Statement on Strategic Stability extension reasons that a nuclear war is a lose-lose situation, and therefore, must not be fought.

Climate change represents the first sign of cooperation between the two countries. Inappropriate as it may be, strengthening ties between the nations may depend on closely collaborating to mitigate climate destabilization. Though Russia and the U.S are part of the Paris Climate Agreement, which is a legally binding document aimed at limiting average global temperature increases, both nations are among the world’s top producers of coal and petroleum fumes (the U.S is second and the Russia Federation is fourth place). A meeting between John Kerry, a United States climate delegate met with Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov may mark the beginning of U.S and Russian environmental regime shifts. Climate change represents a threat to Russia’s permafrost, which could eventuate changes in snow depth and alter its Arctic wildlife ecosystems while the United States’ Alaskan tundra could experience irreversible changes in its icy and coastal regions.

Factory Farming

Factory farming is a form of agriculture in which animals are used for their body parts, skin, bones, milk and eggs. Animals in factory farm settings are usually subjected to cruel conditions leading up to their deaths. Ethics aside, factory farms contribute to greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants (by mass breeding ruminant animals that produce methane), making it an environmentally unsustainable practice. As a bonus, growing crops to feed animals on agriculture farms uses up more water, non-renewable energy and farm acreage than it would take to exclusively grow human consumable crops; supplementing factory farming’s threat to food and water security.

What Is Factory Farming

Factory farming results in degrading naturally occurring ecosystems, mass-breeding animals, the sale of whole corpses – in the case of fish shops or wet markets, and the unsanitary, disease promoting living quarters known as slaughter houses. Cows are forcibly impregnatWHat ised and used for their milk, pigs are shot in the head, or stabbed to so that their body parts can be harvested, female chickens are bred for eggs. Male chicks, on the other hand, are shredded and slaughtered for meat products- as they can not be used for egg production.

Factory Farming Environmental Impact

Factory farming generates heat-retaining gases (carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide) from animal metabolism, fertilizer use for animal-consumed crops, and the of animal food products across nations. Methane, chemically understood as CH4, has more than 20 times the heat trapping potential of CO2– carbon dioxide – and is released by ruminant livestock’s (cows, sheep, buffalo, goats) natural bodily gases and waste. Nitrous oxide N2O, which has more than 200 times the heat trapping potential as carbon dioxide is found in animal waste water which contains nitrogen-based molecules.

Animals on factory farms conventionally experience miserable lives. Often, animals are injected with hormones so that their growth is amplified. Many animals are forced to live close to their own waste, fecal matter and dead members of their species. These conditions make livestock animals more susceptible to disease and viruses which can be transferred to humans. Antibiotic shots are used to protect animals against the diseases that may result from their less than sanitary living environments.

The History of Factory Farming

Our anthropoid ancestors, early humans, likely established relationships with ruminants animals for survival. Ruminants were likely killed for food or used for other resources. Eventually, pigs, cows, goats and sheep were domesticated and kept in close proximity to human settlings. Later, upgrades in farming techniques sparked increases in livestock breeding. The improvements in agriculture led to considerable boosts in food production. Improved food production methodologies also consisted of selective crop breeding crops, monoculture practices, and crop rotation.

Debeaking of Chickens

Debeaking (also dubbed “beak trimming”) is exactly what it sounds like: the forced and painful removal of (or partial removal of) egg laying birds’ beaks. Debeaking is done to protect birds from pecking one another and them injuring or killing other birds in within pecking proximity. When birds are kept in restrictive spaces in close proximity to one another, pecking fights and cannibalisms can take place. To avoid profit loss, farmers debeak their birds, which keeps keeps their flock’s population size and health from declining. Debeaking is an efficient strategy to mitigate premature death in chickens, hens and turkeys, and thus, also mitigate profit loss.

Phasing Out

Livestock animals have brains, nervous systems and sensory receptors which allow for the experience of physical, as well as psychological pain. These animals deserve more than compassion, but rather a basic right to life. Eliminating animals from agriculture does more than lessen instances of torture and abuse, it also increases resources which are presently used to grow animal feed crops, saves water and abates anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions.

Animal Agriculture

The coronavirus identified in December 2019, dubbed COVID-19, is a virus that caused an international respiratory illness pandemic. To date (6/20/21) SARS-CoV-2 has contributed to millions of deaths, prompting the question: what causes widespread disease outbreaks? The Center for Disease Control finds that there is a similarity between the virus COVID-19 and a another virus strain from bats in wildlife markets.

The parallels between wildlife markets and factory farming are innumerable. In both contexts, animals are often confined to restrictive moving spaces in close proximity to one another. Both treat animals and animal flesh products as a food commodity. Both risk contamination of viruses which are transferable between animals and humans.

Food Production and Air Quality

Zoonotic diseases, such as avian influenza and swine flu (the so-called H1N1 virus) are diseases that are spread from animal hosts to humans; they are also examples which highlight the risks of widespread disease outbreak from food production sources. The industrialization of factory farming has dramatically improved animal breeding and animal food production. Therefore, billions of animals are now farmed each year to feed growing American populations. Animal farming could eventuate disease outbreaks which could be felt worldwide.

Growing populations in the United states, China, and the European Union will require more food to feed those swelling numbers. Cattle, pigs and chicken are routinely raped, bred and killed for food and textiles in many developed nations.

Sustainability in agriculture and food production impacts our air quality. Environmental outputs from agriculture farms include runoff into water ways and methane emissions from cattle, sheep and buffalo. Nutrients sprayed onto human grown crops and from farm animal waste affects the quality of water which houses aquatic plants, animals and bacteria.

Global Warming and Factory Farming

Increases in greenhouse gas levels drive Earth’s greenhouse effect and make for warming conditions. The heat from certain natural gases gas concentrations is caused by the greenhouse gas affect in heat-retaining molecules. Nitrous oxide used in fertilizer, methane from cattle flatulence and burps, water vapor from irrigation, carbon dioxide from transport and deforestation makes factory farming the dominant cause of Earth’s intensifying greenhouse gas effect.

The observable effects of a heating planet include shrinking glaciers, increased instances of drought, rises in flood frequency and more intense heatwaves, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Assuming that we trust international experts on climatology, weather and agriculture, then we must trust that the unsustainability of our food production industry threatens the climate conditions that impact human lives.


IPDES workshop on diversity

The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) has released an assessment on the interrelation between biodiversity, shifts in climate, health, food, water, and energy. This peer-reviewed report is the result of a four-day virtual workshop between Scientific Steering Committee-selected experts chosen by the IPBES and Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). This workshop report is the first cooperative analysis undertaken by the two intergovernmental organizations.

What Is the Objective of the IPBES Report?

The objective of the report is to inform policy decision making in the context of the 2050 Vision for Biodiversity and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. IPCC and IPBES scientists sate that climate change and biodiversity loss are twin threats that are mutually reinforcing. “Strong interlinkages and interdependencies exist among the globally agreed goals of food and water security, health for all, affordable and clean energy, protecting biodiversity on land and in the oceans, and combating climate change, among other Sustainable Development Goals”, according to the IPCC and IPBES report.

The IPBES Report is essentially a biodiversity assessment designed to explain the relationship between biodiversity samples and human well-being. Understanding biodiversity, and the extent to which humans depend on the natural world is necessary for understanding precisely how import it is to protect the natural world. The various species that belong to ecological communities are composed of millions of different gene combinations, and those species can be represented in several kinds of ecosystems. The IPBES’ assessment will highlight the degree of resilience that biologically diverse ecosystems have and what type of feedbacks they experience due to human activity.

Specific Goals Outlined In the IPBES Report

Other available actions for climate change mitigation identified in the nexus report include: reducing deforestation (and forest degradation), improving sustainable agricultural and forestry practices to promote carbon storage and enhancing biodiversity, phasing out over-fertilization, and implementing plant-based eating regimens (in rich or the most well-off nations).

Friends of the Earth

Shell Oil Company, one of the largest oil companies in the world, is a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell and a notable figure in the fossil fuels energy market. Shell Oil Company has just lost a major suit which limits the maximum amount of emissions that Shell will be able to produce. A court in the North Sea coast of the western Netherlands, known as The Hague, has ordered Shell to cut its carbon emissions by 45 percent before the end of this decade. Pressure to comply with the Paris Climate Agreement has made its way to Royal Dutch Shell’s doorstep.

Milieudefensie voor Veranderaars’ Case Against Shell Oil Company

Friends of the Earth (Milieudefensie voor Veranderaars) and thousands of co-plaintiffs brought the case forward, convinced that Shell’s projected plans for greenhouse gas emissions reductions were insufficient.  Shell Oil Company’s most recent set of goals aims to lower emissions by 20% no later than 2030 (against that of 2019 levels). Milieudefensie voor Veranderaars and Netherland citizens have been making demands to Shell as early as 2018. By 2019, that campaign resulted in a lawsuit filed in The Hague. Luckily, 2019 was the year that the Netherlands’ Supreme Court ordered the national government to enact emissions cuts, enabling the courts to regulate greenhouse gases for corporations.

The emissions cut verdict was supported by the so called “duty of care”, a legal obligation which requires a person (Shell in this case) to be circumspect and avoid potential (public) risks. The court has successfully made Shell responsible for the threats that it actually poses upon public safety and the ruling has merely expedited Shell’s inexorable path toward zero emissions by 2050. Compliance for reaching net-zero by the year 2050 is outlined in the legally binding Paris Climate Agreement; it will require the collaborative effort of all developed nations and their respective energy sectors.

Congratulations Milieudefensie voor Veranderaars

Milieudefensie voor Veranderaars has scored a monumental win, underscoring an era of change and demonstrating the vigor of organized frustration.

Net Zero

Reaching net zero carbon dioxide emissions is a facet of the larger goal to limit long-term climate change effects like global warming, increased floods, and extreme weather events. Net zero carbon emissions, or carbon neutrality, is the effort to reduce carbon dioxide output at least to the level estimated to be absorbed by Earth’s carbon sinks. In recent years, net-zero gained political traction and has even been endorsed by the Biden administration as a serious goal.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) has recently published a detailed report regarding energy development. This report is a detailed scenario for reaching net zero carbon emissions by the year 2050. According to the IEA, the key to avoiding the worst effects of climate change lies in the hands of international governments and their respective energy sectors. Nonrenewable energies are fossil fuel intensive and contribute a great deal of carbon dioxide pollution when burned. Without changes in energy sectors, net zero by 2050 is an unrealistic objective.

The “Net Zero Emissions by 2050 Scenario (NZE)” is one scenario among many possible pathways to achieve net zero carbon emissions by the year 2050. The IEA posits that “the path to net‐zero emissions is narrow…”. What they mean is that all potential scenarios for reaching net zero require specific actions at specific times. As early as 2030, the NZE calls for the decline of total global energy consumption, declines in coal use, and improvements in energy efficiency.

In Conclusion

The NZE authors say that “staying on it [the path to zero-emissions by 2050] requires the immediate and massive deployment of all available clean and efficient energy technologies.” The NZE emphasizes the importance of renewable energy, electricity, and hydrogen-based fuels, as they will have to eventually replace fossil fuels. Investments in new oil and gas fields must cease immediately. No new coal-fired power stations can be built to avoid further global heating and the worst effects of climate change.


Hurricane Sandy

Hurricane Sandy is among the most destructive Hurricanes of the 2012 Atlantic Hurricane Season. Sandy is estimated to have costed at least $70 billion in infrastructure damages, according to estimations by The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. A recently published study suggests that climate change actually raises Hurricane Sandy’s cost in damages by $8 billion. By using computer modeling simulations, researchers have discovered that human caused sea level rise made the storm conditions of Hurricane Sandy much worse than what’s been previously estimated.

Its long been established that climate change has influenced Earth’s storms by raising sea level rise and increasing the likelihood and intensity of floods. To quantify this effect, researchers (Benjamin H. Strauss, Philip M. Orton, Klaus Bittermann, Maya K. Buchanan, Daniel M. Gilford, Robert E. Kopp, Scott Kulp, Chris Massey , Hans de Moel & Sergey Vinogradov) simulated two versions of Hurrican Sandy and its resulting damages. Version one of the simulation depicts Hurricane Sandy as it actually occurred. Version two is a simulated scenario that would have occurred with distributions of lower sea levels in areas of attributable sea level rise.

How Climate Change Increases Damage Costs

The results of the simulation scenarios suggest that climate change’s impact on 20th century weather and storms exacerbated Hurricane Sandy. The researchers determined that seas in 2012 were 4.1 inches (10.5 centimeters) higher than in 1900. This figure is deceivingly small; the increase of 4.1 inches, when distributed appropriately, can make a dramatic difference in eastern parts of the world. This effect is due to the location of ice glaciers in Greenland and Alaska – the felt rise in sea levels is usually measured on the opposite end of the globe from the central melting sources, says study co-author Bob Kopp, director of Rutgers University’s Institute of Earth, Oceans and Atmospheric Sciences. The new study joins an emerging body of work which aims to illustrate the connections between adverse climate change and modern human activity. Anthropogenic climate change serves to supplement storms, making them appear more often and more intense. In this case, we are able to glimpse how much more costly climate change is on infrastructure and human wellbeing.


golden bitcoin tokens!

Bitcoin, like any cryptocurrency, is a digital form of payment that is protected from theft through blockchain technology. Blockchains are stores of data that are linked together using cryptography in a digitally permanent “chain” of information. Adding new blocks involves solving a complex computational equations and validates new chains on the block. The addition of new blocks makes previous blocks harder to modify and thus more secure. Solving these complex computational equations, known as Bitcoin mining, generates new Bitcoin for the miner.

How Does Bitcoin Use Energy?

As mentioned, Bitcoin is created from computer-based solutions to complex mathematical equations in a process known as mining. The computers involved in mining use high amounts of electricity, often generated by fossil fuels. Since approximately two-thirds of global electricity is produced in power plants that utilize fossil fuels, its safe to presume that the extraordinary computational power required for mining is not all from renewable energy sources. The University of Cambridge (Centre for Alternative Finance) estimates that global Bitcoin transactions use around a hundred and forty terawatt-hours per year. Estimates are not exact, and its hard to tell exactly how much energy is used specifically on mining computations.

However, there are many mining hotspots in China, with Xinjiang being one of its powerhouses for Bitcoin mining. One of China’s predominant power sources is coal, an nonrenewable source of energy, which counteracts efforts to mitigate global warming. Bitcoin is a decentralized form of currency, which means that it isn’t controlled or validated by any single authority, it relies on the global cooperation of many computational processes- making Bitcoin a considerable source of energy use.

CA Senate Bill 1383

Senate Bill 1838 (SB 1383), passed in September 2016 by Governor Edmund Brown Jr., establishes planned targets for short-lived pollutants, including methane, in multiple sectors of California’s economy. To cut methane emissions, California has established a plan to recycle organic materials and prevent them from ending up in landfills. Organic wastes in landfills are a significant source of methane emissions.

SB 1383 Food Recovery

Methane emission goals are specifically outlined in SB 1383. The bill recognizes short lived pollutants as “powerful climate enforcers” that detrimentally impact air quality and public health. Though methane is a natural gas, it also contributors to Earth’s greenhouse effect. Decomposing human food and other organic material produce methane (along with other landfill gases). LFGs are a combination of greenhouse gases, including carbon dioxide, that are produced as organic wastes rot and break down.

Many organic materials can be recycled, or composted, and need not end up as waste in landfills. According to the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle), the authors of SB 1383, food makes up about 18% of California’s landfill waste. Preventing food and other organic wastes from ending up in landfills will limit the amount of methane that California produces.

California Senate Bill 1383 Effective Date

The enforcement provisions of SB 1383 include reductions in the amount of organic material disposed of in landfi­lls by at least 50% (from 2014 levels) no later than January 1, 2020 (and by 75% by January 1, 2025). By 2025, Senate Bill 1383 also intends to salvage at least 20% of currently disposed food.

SB 1383 Requirements

To comply with SB1393, residents living in single-family homes in the RethinkWaste Service Area will be provided curbside organics that are made from recycled materials. Those without compost service can go to Recology San Mateo County to set one up. Business and property owners consisting of five or more people will be required to send their organic wastes to a facility which can properly recover it. The SB 1383 regulations go into effect January 1, 2022.


A new paper from Naomi Oreskes and Geoffrey Supran, Harvard science historians, demonstrate in a new study that ExxonMobil’s rhetoric is used to make individual consumers share the responsibility for climate change. Oreskes and Supran processed the rhetoric in 180 of ExxonMobil’s company documents, including studies written and conducted by ExxonMobil scientists. Oreskes’ and Supran’s research suggests that the ExxonMobil is downplaying its role in the climate crisis and, in doing so, undermines environmental litigation, regulation, and activism.

Supran tells Vox American news website, “never before has it been proven that fossil fuel propaganda is demonstrably one source of where this [consumer- and demand-focused] mindset has originated from.” ExxonMobil’s strategy is quite simple: deflect from the fact that the company supplies fossil fuels and draw attention toward consumer’s demand for their products. If consumers are to blame for fossil fuel use, then industries like ExxonMobil are effectively absolved. We can not let any major energy conglomerates excuse themselves from moral responsibility. Taking accountability will be the only motivation for energy producers to take part in decarbonization and green-future initiatives.

By establishing fossil fuels as an inevitable cornerstone in energy, ExxonMobil has shaped the way the policymakers and the public view consequences associated with nonrenewable energy. Instead of publicly acknowledging the research and studies that suggest that climate change if of certain detriment to human safety and infrastructure, Exxon Mobil Corporation consistently chooses to keep quiet on the matter. To boot, ExxonMobil casts doubt on the mounting threat of global warming. This makes responding to climate change more difficult, battling misrepresentation of the issue makes education on the matter a more complicated pursuit. Still, its worth mentioning that the Harvard Researchers have shared immensely important findings; climate activism is better off for their discoveries.