What we learned this week

Having written about how Insulate Britain lost support in public polling, I was interested to see that Just Stop Oil appears to be encouraging climate action, even if people hesitate to endorse the protestors themselves.

Also on the theme of useful polling, working class Conservative voters are more supportive of renewable energy and net zero policies than more affluent voters. No more lazy statements on what working class people care about or don’t care about please.

Amnesty International have a self-guided online course on climate change and human rights, which looks rather good.

“A single unmuffled scooter crossing Paris at night can wake as many as 10,000 people” – how Paris is clamping down on noise pollution from traffic. We don’t hear much about noise pollution, but facts like that one make me wonder why not.

The United States has finally begun the phase out of incandescent light bulbs, after a decade of squabbing about it. The first countries to move on incandescent bulbs were Cuba and Venezuela, calling time on them in 2005 – probably because they hate freedom there.

I’ve been meaning to mention some books on this weekend round-up – books that I’m not going to give a full review, or that are a bit more fringe. Today, Sabotage on the Solar Express, by MG Leonard and Sam Sedgman. It’s the fifth in the family favourite ‘adventures on trains’ series, and both my kids are big fans. So is my wife, because she loves a classic whodunnit mysteries with a crime to solve.

I mention this particular instalment because it’s set on an experimental solar hybrid train in Australia. It’s the only children’s book I can think of that includes an explanation of the role of hydrogen in the energy transition – alongside the usual mystery and train adventure, naturally.

Highlights from this week:

After oil we flourish

For some parts of the world, the idea of life without fossil fuels brings a lump to the throat. How will we keep our homes warm? Please tell me I can keep driving a car. There is uncertainty about how we will cope without oil and gas, in some cases leading to outright rejection of…

So, methane-catching face masks for cows?

Farmed animals are a big contributor to global emissions, accounting for around 14.5% of greenhouse gases. Cattle farming for beef and dairy is the biggest problem, and with over a billion cows on the planet, it’s a major obstacle to a sustainable future. Some of the environmental impact of cattle farming is from producing the…

Art review: Our Time on Earth, the Barbican

Our Time on Earth is a new exhibition opening today at The Barbican Centre in London, and presenting a creative response to the climate emergency. 18 different artists have contributed, from 12 different countries, each offering a different perspective on living well in the anthropocene. Visitors enter The Curve gallery in darkness, and are invited…

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