Behind the IPCC headlines, Part1: The Climate Minute

A UN Panel released it’s 6th Assessment Report on the science of climate change. We explain what the top-level headlines mean.

The reading list:

Because we recognize the necessity of personal accountability for our actions, because we accept responsibility for a building a durable future and because we believe it is our patriotic duty as citizens to speak out, we must insist the United States transform it’s energy sector, over the next decade, under a just and equitable plan, that uses regulations, investments and a price on carbon to safeguard our collective future.

Thanks for listening.

…Ted McIntyre


A vision of a shared future: The Climate Minute's Lithium Series (Episode 7)

The middle ground in the choice between EV usage growth and damaging lithium mining may be in EV sharing. We discuss an innovative program in Boston that offers inexpensive EV sharing to disadvantaged communities. Is this a path to equity, livable cities and reduced Li demand?

The reading list:

Because we recognize the necessity of personal accountability for our actions, because we accept responsibility for a building a durable future and because we believe it is our patriotic duty as citizens to speak out, we must insist the United States transform it’s energy sector, over the next decade, under a just and equitable plan, that uses regulations, investments and a price on carbon to safeguard our collective future.

Thanks for listening.

…Ted McIntyre


Mining and recycling are two sides of a coin: The Climate Minute's Lithium Series (Episode 6)

Increasing demand for electric vehicles means increasing demand for lithium. New mining is damaging, but recycling lithium will reduce that damage. We speak with an expert on the benefits of recycling, but also consider the concrete steps we should take now to ensure a robust recapture process in the future.

The reading list:

Because we recognize the necessity of personal accountability for our actions, because we accept responsibility for a building a durable future and because we believe it is our patriotic duty as citizens to speak out, we must insist the United States transform it’s energy sector, over the next decade, under a just and equitable plan, that uses regulations, investments and a price on carbon to safeguard our collective future.

Thanks for listening.

…Ted McIntyre


Ends, Means, Nonviolence and Lithium: The Climate Minute's Lithium Series (Episode 5)

One philosophical approach says that how we mine lithium is just as important as why we mine it. The ‘end’ of a green economy is tied to the means we use to get there. We speak with an expert who tells us that nonviolence is a good tool to use in thinking about how we make the just transition to a new energy economy.

The reading list:

Barry L. Gan is Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at St. Bonaventure University. He is the author of Violence and Nonviolence: An Introduction. He is also co-editor with Robert L. Holmes of a leading anthology on nonviolence, Nonviolence in Theory and Practice, now in a third edition; and for twenty-five years he was editor of The Acorn: Journal of the Gandhi-King Society. For two years he served as program committee chair of the Fellowship of Reconciliation, the oldest and largest interfaith peace group in the United States, and also served for three years as co-editor of Peace and Change, a quarterly journal of peace research.

After receiving his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in philosophy from the University of Rochester in 1981 and 1984, respectively, he taught at St. Bonaventure University for thirty-six years before retiring in 2021. Prior to that he taught high school and junior high school English for six years. He is married to Miaoli Zhang, a former trainer in microscopic photography for Olympus of China. He has a daughter who is a writer and previously worked as School Programs Coordinator at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, a son who is a writer and now works in the field of search engine optimization, and a stepson who also does freelance writing.

Because we recognize the necessity of personal accountability for our actions, because we accept responsibility for a building a durable future and because we believe it is our patriotic duty as citizens to speak out, we must insist the United States transform it’s energy sector, over the next decade, under a just and equitable plan, that uses regulations, investments and a price on carbon to safeguard our collective future.

Thanks for listening.

…Ted McIntyre


A lithium mine threatens Thacker Pass: The Climate Minute's Lithium Series (Episode 4)

As the global demand for new lithium surges, a pristine spot in Nevada is slated for an open pit lithium mine. An ongoing encampment at Thacker Pass offers resistance. Listen in to activist and author Max Wilbert, who raises difficult questions such as: When we speak of sustainability, are we sustaining life, or just a life-style?

The reading list:

Because we recognize the necessity of personal accountability for our actions, because we accept responsibility for a building a durable future and because we believe it is our patriotic duty as citizens to speak out, we must insist the United States transform it’s energy sector, over the next decade, under a just and equitable plan, that uses regulations, investments and a price on carbon to safeguard our collective future.

Thanks for listening.

…Ted McIntyre


Troubling facts about lithium mining: The Climate Minute's Lithium Series (Episode 3)

If we don’t recycle it, then we must mine new lithium. We speak with an expert from EarthWorks on the troubling truth that lithium mining, from brine or ‘hard rock’ is damaging to local environments and communities. We discuss how to tell if your lithium is responsibly sourced.

The reading list:

Because we recognize the necessity of personal accountability for our actions, because we accept responsibility for a building a durable future and because we believe it is our patriotic duty as citizens to speak out, we must insist the United States transform it’s energy sector, over the next decade, under a just and equitable plan, that uses regulations, investments and a price on carbon to safeguard our collective future.

Thanks for listening.

…Ted McIntyre


Lithium at the critical juncture: The Climate Minute's Lithium Series (Episode2)

Mining lithium for EV batteries puts the tradeoff of green transport and local environmental damage in high relief. We talk to an expert- Professor Thea Riofrancos of Providence College, who has studied the question. Her advice is to look at the current moment as a 'critical juncture' that will define our path into the decarbonized future, but also to try to imagine a middle ground where we have a green society that does not destroy local habitats.

The reading list:

Because we recognize the necessity of personal accountability for our actions, because we accept responsibility for a building a durable future and because we believe it is our patriotic duty as citizens to speak out, we must insist the United States transform it’s energy sector, over the next decade, under a just and equitable plan, that uses regulations, investments and a price on carbon to safeguard our collective future.

Thanks for listening.

…Ted McIntyre


Looking at the Energy Transition through the Lithium Lens: The Climate Minute Lithium Series

As heat waves and floods assault us, humans are in the midst of a great societal energy transition. We must find ways to decarbonize. The question is no longer if, but rather how, to build the clean energy system we need. The coming changes are so broad that they can be hard to comprehend. It is helpful to narrow the discussion. In this series of podcasts, we study the big question of "how" to build a new future thru the lens of a specific issue: the production and use of lithium. Listen in as we dip our toes into the oceans of questions about how to build a just energy transition.

Batteries are essential to practical renewable energy systems, as well as the electric vehicles so central to our thinking about the economy. The atomic element lithium is essential to the manufacture of batteries. As demand for lithium skyrockets in the wake of increased EV production, we must ask "where is that lithium coming from?" Raw lithium is most often found near marginalized communities, be it the Atacama Desert in South America or near indigenous lands in Nevada. The current methods of mining lithium are extremely damaging to land and communities that surround the resource. The moral question is this: does the supposed benefit of 'an EV in every garage" outweigh the clear damage done by lithium mining? Are sacrifice zones acceptable so that we can drive EVs? Or should we phrase the question more gently and ask how we can build a green future and preserve local communities.

In this series of podcasts we will talk to several experts:

  • Professor Thea Riofrancos of Providence College tells us about the 'critical junction' at which our society stands. Our decision now will determine the future.
  • Benjamin Hitchcock Auciello of Earthworks discusses the nature of lithium mining and the opportunities for recycling.
  • Author Max Wilbert, currently encamped at Thacker Pass, asks if an EV is a right or a privilege.
  • Professor Barry Gan of Saint Bonaventure University helps us understand how Gandhi's ideas on non-violence can help us manage the 'ends vs means' questions.
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Peak days need a shave! The Climate Minute

It turns out that those hot humid August days are great opportunities to take climate action. We talk with an expert about how to cut carbon emissions and save money, by participating in Green Energy Consumer Alliance's "Shave the Peak" program. It is free and will make you feel better about the heat.

The reading list:

Because we recognize the necessity of personal accountability for our actions, because we accept responsibility for a building a durable future and because we believe it is our patriotic duty as citizens to speak out, we must insist the United States transform it’s energy sector, over the next decade, under a just and equitable plan, that uses regulations, investments and a price on carbon to safeguard our collective future.

Thanks for listening.

…Ted McIntyre


Theologia Solis: The Climate Minute

How do you build a moral code based on principles the Sun has ‘taught’ us? How can we incorporate scientific lessons about ecological systems into our lives?

The reading list:

Because we recognize the necessity of personal accountability for our actions, because we accept responsibility for a building a durable future and because we believe it is our patriotic duty as citizens to speak out, we must insist the United States transform it’s energy sector, over the next decade, under a just and equitable plan, that uses regulations, investments and a price on carbon to safeguard our collective future.

Thanks for listening.

…Ted McIntyre

 



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