What we learned this week

I liked this story in the Guardian about a thousand year old irrigation system being refurbished as a climate adaptation in Spain. It celebrates both low-tech and commons approaches.

I’ve written before about the NHS target to reach net zero carbon by 2040 – a formidable challenge for an institution responsible for 4% of the country’s greenhouses gases. According to a new report, so far that is not on track.

As a satisfied customer of the modular and repairable Fairphone, I was interested to see a similar approach being taken by a company called Framework, who have developed a modular laptop.

A crowdfunding campaign for this week: Step Into the Amazon is raising £1,200 for a better internet connection for the Kambeba indigenous tribe in the Amazon, enabling schoolchildren to talk to each other across the world.

The WeNaturalists ‘People of Nature’ awards are open for nominations, worldwide. You can nominate nature photographers, child activists, teachers, etc, so it’s a nice opportunity to put forward some local heroes for a bit of recognition.

On the subject of awards, a couple of years ago I wrote a post on the blog about how over-simplified blue and green caricatures of planet earth obscure different experiences of climate change. It felt like an original thought, so I developed it for a talk to the conference of the Geographical Association, and then expanded it more academically into an article for the Geography Journal. Unexpected, since I am neither an academic nor a geographer, I received the Geographical Association’s annual award ‘for excellence in leading geography’ this week. A hunch worth following then.

Book review: Africa is Not a Country, by Dipo Faloyin

It’s been a while, but every once in a while a big book on Africa lands in the bookshops. They’re written by journalists, former diplomats or Gordon Brown, and have names like ‘the state of Africa’. All the ones I can think of are written by white men, so straight away this one catches the…

How to upcycle a bin lorry

Remanufacturing is an aspect of the circular economy that we don’t hear so much about. It’s defined as “a series of manufacturing steps acting on an end-of-life part or product in order to return it to like-new or better performance, with warranty to match.” It’s better than refurbishment, aiming to achieve a final product that…

The least visited bit of the Imperial War Museum

I’ve been on holiday last week and this week – sort of. I’ve been doing some school assemblies and events at libraries, as part of the second career as a children’s author that I seem to have made for myself while I wasn’t looking. We’ve also been visiting family, and yesterday were at the Imperial…

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