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Posts Tagged ‘climate change’

The US President Barack Obama. Photo: Yahoo News

The US President Barack Obama. Photo: Yahoo News

I don’t have much patience for people who deny climate change, but if you’ve got creative approaches, market-based approaches, tell me about them. […] We also know that the climate is warming faster than anybody anticipated five or 10 years ago, and that the future…in part, is going to depend on our willingness to deal with something that we may not be able to see or smell the way you could when the Chicago River was on fire, or at least could have caught on fire, but is in some ways more serious, more fundamental.”

said the US President Barack Obama, last week, at the Democratic fundraiser, in Chicago, in the United States.

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Ireland's Countryside. Source: IDB.ie

Ireland’s Countryside. Source: IDB.ie

Ireland is a country that is often thought of as “Green” to the core, owing to its lush green rolling countryside and its affectionate unofficial name abroad, the Emerald Isle. It seems as if Ireland is now determined to not only look green, but actually be green, in a concerted effort to improve their environmental consciousness and sustainability credentials.

Bord Bia, the Irish Food Board confirm this green status, noting that…

“Ireland is a country supremely well suited to sustainability. Our climate is temperate; our lush, green countryside is perfect for farming; ours seas are teeming with fish.

Our dairy industry shares the lowest carbon footprint in the EU with Austria. Our beef industry, the largest net exporter in the northern hemisphere, is also among the lowest. And with our rainfall, in a world facing water shortages, and agriculture requiring 70% of freshwater supplies for irrigation, our water stress index, unsurprisingly is one of the lowest in the world.”

They continue on, explaining that “it is the proper management of these resources now that matters, and which will further enhance and demonstrate our green reputation, around the world.”

This growing reputation and expertise, is also acknowledged in a recent article from The Guardian, which notes that Bord Bia have “developed tools to assess beef farm emissions and also the carbon emissions generated (in the process), to help identify carbon hotspots where potential improvements may be possible.” These tools have been developed during the organisation’s unique sustainability development programme, called Origin Green.

Changing Ireland’s sustainability colours will not be easy, but a determined, collective effort is a necessity in the ongoing global fight against detrimental climate change.

Bord Bia's Origin Green Campaign Logo. Source: Bordbia.ie

Bord Bia’s ‘Origin Green’ Campaign Logo. Source: Bordbia.ie

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april22earthday2013

For those of you who didn’t know today is Earth Day, which celebrates its 43rd birthday today. Earth Day’s goal is to broaden and diversify the environmental movement worldwide, and to mobilize it as the most effective vehicle for promoting a healthy, sustainable environment.

US Senator Gaylord Nelson conceived the idea for the event in the wake of the 1969 oil spill in Santa Barbara, California. The first Earth Day began in 1970 when 20 million Americans took to the streets to demand a sustainable environment and it is widely credited with launching the modern environmental movement

Today Earth Day is a big deal with more than one billion people across 192 countries now participating in Earth Day activities, with planting trees being one of the most popular ways to show support. The numbers involved also mean that it is the largest secular civic event in the world.

Even Google Doodlers are getting involved by featuring a colourful and interactive doodle on its homepage to mark the cycle of seasons.

Watch this video about the Earth Day Network, and the education & sustainability activities which people are engaged in, around the world.

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Indonesian Mangroves

Indonesian Mangroves

New research from the respected and influential Centre for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) has revealed the importance of Indonesia’s vast mangrove forests. They provide a valuable source of ecosystem services, habitat for unique species and act as vital carbon sinks in the ongoing battle with climate change.

Muljadi Tantra, the Deputy Managing Director and Chief Financial Officer of a group of companies that harvest mangrove wood explains that “the impact of sustainable logging on the environment is very minimal, because of the ability of the mangrove to regenerate itself,” adding that “the actual threat comes from the mangrove’s conversion to other uses.”

While the region has lost significant business from a large Japanese multinationals, due to concerns over detrimental environmental consequences, the organisation has attempted to strengthen its position by giving CIRFOR access to their lands to comprehensively research the hypothesis of sustainable logging.

Tantra, meanwhile, says “If you do it sustainably, that means it’s a perpetual income, for us, for the people surrounding the forest, and for the country,” and concluding by noting that “if we do it the unsustainable way, you only get a one-time income, the forest is ruined, and it’s not even economically justifiable if you don’t do it sustainably.”

Only time and scientifically measured and reported data will answer this intriguing question. Could it be that logging will actually save the mangroves?

Discover more about Indonesia’s mangroves in this ‘Dirty Science’ video.

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