What we learned this week

“The climate crisis alone should have shown that green energy, not gas, is the future” writes India Bourke at the New Statesman. “But having failed to do so, geopolitical tensions may now provide the wake-up call Europe (and the world) so desperately needs.”

Lots of these sorts of articles out this week in the wake of Russia’s aggressions in Ukraine. See also Bill McKibben: “This is not a ‘war for oil and gas’ in the sense that too many of America’s Middle East misadventures might plausibly be described. But it is a war underwritten by oil and gas, a war whose most crucial weapon may be oil and gas, a war we can’t fully engage because we remain dependent on oil and gas. If you want to stand with the brave people of Ukraine, you need to find a way to stand against oil and gas.”

Is our obsession with GDP killing the climate? Good to see the BBC ask the experts in their Climate Question podcast.

What if the biggest problem with Insulate Britain wasn’t the campaign tactics, but the idea of insulation in the first place? Andrew Curry discusses an interesting response from a buildings scientist to my recent post on Insulate Britain.

Feels rather trivial at the end of the list, but just a reminder that my children’s book, Max Counts to a Million, is out this coming Thursday. Early reviews say it is “a beautiful, relatable story”, and “uplifting and utterly charming”.

Highlights from this week:

Climate movies to watch after Don’t Look Up

Don’t Look Up has been a much discussed movie in climate change circles, a movie that is very obviously about climate change despite not mentioning it. It relies instead on a plot about an inbound meteorite that people are either panicking about or refusing to acknowlege. It’s a good satire and I enjoyed it, and…

Black Climate Week and why it matters

It’s a cliche to say that the environmental movement is too white, however true it may be. But when it’s repeated unthinkingly, it can obscure the contributions of people of colour to the climate debate. Because marginalised communities are at the forefront of environmental injustice, there has always been grassroots action against pollution, industry, logging…

Rwanda and Peru lead the way towards a plastics treaty

When I was an International Relations student, I enjoyed telling people that I was on my way to my Politics of Hazardous Technologies lecture, because there was a 95% chance that it was more interesting than the lecture they were headed to. Global treaties were a recurring theme in that particular course, as we looked…


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