The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Climate Change

This is the place to learn about what’s what and why – the Hitchhiker’s Guide to Climate Change, a climate-based knowledge base. “Don’t Panic!” would have been a good title, but this guide to climate change will leave that decision up to the reader. Like every complex issue that the public needs to understand, people’s attitudes lie on a spectrum defined by extremes at either end and the best understanding is somewhere in-between, some solid ground somewhere between panic and denial.

The Carbon Watchdog website provides information on every aspect of global warming and climate change and what we need to do to reduce it and adapt to it. There is a long way to go before this becomes the Encyclopedia Climatica” and the work to fill in the gaps will by its nature never end. It is designed to provide apolitical, non-ideological, practical information.

Definition of Carbon Footprint

The simple definition of carbon footprint: a measure usually in kilos or tonnes of the carbon dioxide or CO2 emissions that result from the person,…

The Carbon Budget Made Simple

When student climate striker Greta Thunberg talks about “simple maths”, she means the carbon budget and how the 2015 Paris Climate Accord (and a normal…

Where and when it was, is and will be bad

Days of Coal in Calgary, Canada

Hugh Archibald White was born and brought up in Calgary, Canada in the 1940s and 50s. He gave me a run-down on their almost universal dependence on coal, illustrated with some great anecdotes about his grandfather, a coal and gas merchant, including: the vastness of Canada’s natural resourcesthe railways and developmentlow prices and infinite availability…

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How Green is my Tesla?

This week I persuaded my old friend from Germany, Dirk Carstens, to give me the run-down on the pros and cons of owning a Tesla. He’s a trained physicist so there’s not much about the EV technology that phases him. Some of the stuff we discussed: the low billsthe all-important battery, how to treat it,…

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Green Retrofit – turning a Victorian London House into a Superhome

I interview Kate Calvert, Superhome creator and North London resident: what happens when you do a green retrofit on a 19th Century terrace housesolar panels, wall insulation, electricity billslocal council planning regulations, bad buildings and bombsholding corporate building developers to their eco promisesis carbon rationing like war-time rationing? Podcast Subscriptions

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The Carbon Footprint of Food

Does going vegan reduce people’s personal carbon footprints, and if so, by how much? It should be obvious, but with the way agriculture and supply…

Offsetting Step-by-Step

The concept: emit CO2 – and pay to compensate for it. If CO2 and climate change are destroying the planet, the idea behind offsetting carbon…

The economics of climate change, including how we got here, how we can get somewhere better, and the Great Energy Transition as society weans itself off fossil fuels.

“The Limits to Growth”, explained in this youtube video, from 1972, is the single most successful econometric forecast ever. It described a crossroads for the global economy. Hindsight says fairly emphatically, the world went the wrong way.

COVID-19-driven Green New Deal

There are two big “Green New Deals” on the table: the US Democrats want one and are planning to bring it in next year, assuming they can win the November election and there’s the European Green New Deal, championed by Ursula von der Leyen, the new president of the European Commission. The BBC ran an…

Australian Bushfires Crisis of 2020 demands a new Political Strategy

Photo by Jack Bassingthwaighte on Unsplash The unprecedented Australian bushfires in 2020 followed the lost 2019 ‘Unloseable Climate Election’ As we enter the new decade, Australia finds itself flooding the international headlines for all the wrong reasons. The record-breaking bushfires that began in December raged for weeks and were only fully extinguished thanks to unprecedented…

Green New Deal

A positive vision of the future from 2019 and 2020 by US Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and author Naomi Klein, based on the Green New Deal as the starting point.

Can the World Reduce CO2 Emissions Fairly? Contraction and Convergence

Our personal CO2 emissions might be produced anywhere in the world, with the modern world’s globalised supply chains. Contraction and Convergence (of CO2 emissions) was until 2010 the basis of climate negotiations to make a fair deal between all nations for CO2 emissions reduction. It may well be again soon while the “best effort” approach…

Someone clever once said, we have space age technology, a medieval society, and Palaeolithic brains. What could possibly go wrong?

The Pope, the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Dalai Lama, Shiva the Destroyer – they all have advice on climate change.

These tunes might pick you up when you’re feeling down about climate change.

Climate Change and the Meaning of Life

It takes a lot of effort and determination to break out of the bubble of our everyday London, LA, or Sydney lives, a bubble of 12 tonnes of CO2 emissions per annum that says not only is it normal to have such a hefty carbon footprint, it’s actually sensible and defensible. If you are in…

There is always a funny side to everything – although this might be quite black.

From Semi-Rad – gone from the internet

When asked if I am pessimistic or optimistic about the future, my answer is always the same: if you look at the science about what is happening on Earth and aren’t pessimistic, you don’t understand the data. But if you meet the people who are working to restore this Earth and the lives of the poor, and you aren’t optimistic, you haven’t got a pulse.

Paul Hawken, author of Drawdown

So let us leave behind a country better than the one we were left.

Every breath from my bronze-pounded chest,

we will raise this wounded world into a wondrous one.

Amanda Gorman, US National Youth Poet Laureate 2017, The Hill We Climb

We are in the beginning of a mass extinction, and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth. How dare you!

Greta Thunberg, Student Climate Striker, UN Summit, NY 2019 https://www.npr.org/2019/09/23/763452863/transcript-greta-thunbergs-speech-at-the-u-n-climate-action-summit

I would like to overcome capitalism, but it’s not in the relevant time scale. Global warming basically has to be taken care of within the framework of existing institutions, modifying them as necessary. That’s the problem we face.

Prof Noam Chomsky, 2020. Noam Chomsky and Robert Pollin Interviewed by David Roberts about their new book, “Climate Crisis and the Green New Deal”

The Hitchhiker’s Guide To Climate Change Miscellaneous

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy was published by Megadodo Publications of Ursa Minor Beta on a very sound financial footing. Unfortunately Carbon Watchdog still has some way to go to reach that level. All the work here is only possible thanks to donations via Patreon red Patreon logo

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