What strikes me now in writing this, is just how extraordinarily privileged I am to have the peace and space for contemplation and dialogue. My clarity is the product of thousands of miles of travel, hundreds of conversations, days of writing. The major question I’m left with is how on earth can folks in the US find the peace to make sense of the present and dream of a future worth fighting for?
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Peatlands are the superheroes of ecosystems: purifying water, sometimes mitigating flooding and providing a home for rare species. And they beat nearly every system when it comes to carbon storage. Known peatlands only cover about 3 percent of the world’s land surface, but store at least twice as much carbon as all of Earth’s standing forests. And at least one-third of the world’s organic soil carbon, which plays a vital role in mitigating climate change and stabilizing the carbon cycle, is in peatlands.
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16 August 2017. Vertical Farms – No Lighthouses for Ecological Cities –
The dream of food without dirt. That is the best description of how we will get food in the future if we would believe the impressive number of food tech start-ups which will produce food without soil or animals. But few of them deliver on their exaggerated promises.
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16 August 2017. Climate Science: Business As Usual –
When we hear about the emissions scenarios used in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports, do we really understand what they’re assuming about future fossil fuel combustion? And what do these emissions scenarios imply about the steps needed to achieve climate policy goals and decarbonize our energy system?
16 August 2017. Neoliberalism: the Break-up Tour –
In April 1947, Mont-Pèlerin was home to an ideological resurrection and, as with The Returned, what came back was critically different to the previous incarnation. The architects of neoliberalism favoured a faith in free markets to best meet peoples’ needs, drawing on the tradition of Adam Smith, but taken to a new, extreme level. They coupled this to an equally extreme libertarian individualism.
16 August 2017. The Concrete Garden – Land is Freedom! A Call to Reclaim our Cities –
Spaces like the Concrete Garden or Les Grands Voisins are amazing in that they enable us to see that another society based on social harmony and a different understanding of work is possible. But let’s make these spaces permanent, let’s not confine them to small bubbles that can burst. We should demand that any piece of land unused for long period be permanently given to the community.
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15 August 2017. Youth for Public Spaces: (Place) Making Our Future –
At a time when a primary mode of interaction between young people is through social media, this group may be especially vulnerable to the possibility of forgetting the value of public space around them. Why play chess in the park when you can play it on Facebook? Why walk along the riverside when you can send Tweets instead? Why have lunch from a kiosk in a public plaza when it’s easier to post Snapchats of your food from home?
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15 August 2017. Record Heat in 2016 Broke Lake Temperature Records Too –
An annual analysis of the planet’s climate reaffirms what researchers knew was the case: that 2016 was the hottest year since at least 1880, when reliable global measurements were first kept. Record concentrations of heat-trapping gases and a strong El Nino raised the global average temperature to a new high, breaking a mark set just a year earlier.
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Cooperation Jackson has been working with the Coalition for Economic Justice which is specifically focused on combating the aspects of the Confederate Spring that are seeking to seize Jackson’s strategic assets and destroy Black political power in the city. This panel/workshop session will also give some context to the struggle for economic democracy in Jackson Mississippi and Cooperation Jackson’s role as a vehicle designed to actualize economic democracy in Jackson, Mississippi.
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15 August 2017. Who Has the Skills to Build Community? We All Do –
So I began wondering: What if the people I met in one city—say, Detroit—could share what they know with people in other communities around the country? What if people had access to the skills that would allow them to step up with confidence together with others where they live? We have a lot of work ahead of us—especially with the retrograde politics in Washington, D.C. Could work in our communities deepen relationships while building our power and nourishing our spirits?
15 August 2017. Modern Small-Scale Farming: Could it Sustain Us? Could we Sustain It? –
The persistent question for me as we explore local food issues here at Strong Towns is: Could any of our communities actually survive on local food alone? Could we ever get to a point where local food makes up most of our diets and where local farmers are successfully supplying that? These questions (inspired by the Strong Towns Strength Test) have been buzzing in the back of my mind and, while I want to believe it’s feasible to live off of local food, the more I study this, the more I realize it would be pretty darn tough, if not impossible.
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