What we learned this week

This week I was pointed to the Alliance for Just Money, which is a US equivalent to the Positive Money campaign that many UK readers will be familiar with.

Cities in China have opened up old air raid shelters this week so that people can escape record breaking heatwave temperatures.

It’s always worth listening to the BBC’s The Climate Question podcast, but a particular shout-out to this week’s episode on cycling, as my wife was the researcher on the show and spent days phoning urban planners around the world.

Having recently bemoaned the lack of African countries included in a recent ‘global’ climate survey by Ipsos, here’s one from Yale that gathers data from dozens of African countries rarely featured in polling. On the other hand, it’s done through Facebook, and one does have to wonder what percentage of the Congo is on social media. (Or actually, let me look that up: 2.3% is the answer.)

The video has been doing the rounds, but if you haven’t seen it yet, check out this group of young people in France who use parkour to switch off the lights on businesses that leave them on all night.

Sustainable farming in a full world

When we think of sustainable farming, what comes to mind? I expect local and seasonal food feature. Organic standards. Free range, grass-fed, outdoor reared. Wholesome, natural foods. More recently, a lot of people would add plant-based to that list. George Monbiot’s book ReGenesis, which I reviewed recently, complicates a lot of assumptions about this. Not…

Plastics crisis? Follow the money

It’s Plastic Free July, which means that millions of people will currently be ‘doing their bit’ to resist the relentless tide of single-use plastics into our homes, towns and countryside. I wish them all the best in their struggle, though I won’t be joining it myself. As I’ve written about before, avoiding plastic is impossible…

Book review: The Value of a Whale, by Adrienne Buller

What stops us from acting to stop climate change? Why are we yet to turn a corner on global emissions, let alone bring them down? How is so much talk by so many supposedly powerful people leading to so little action? Adrienne Buller argues that “self-defeating adherence to flawed assumptions and ‘solutions’” is a big…


  1. Thanks. Had not been aware of Plastic Free July. One year, after a trip on the Staten Island ferry in New York, I signed a pledge not to buy any more drinks in plastic 12 or 16 oz bottles. I did it, and it was easy to do…

    1. That’s often the case, isn’t it? A pledge breaks a habit and puts in place a new one, and it’s something that’s second nature before you know what’s going on.

      I don’t buy bottled drinks either, beyond once or twice a year.

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