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Sustainability round-up - interesting articles from around the web

UNGA President Updates Advisors on Gender Efforts (IISD) NFTs: WWF tried raising money with digital art but backtracked – environmental charities should follow suit (The Conversation) Natural gas is a fossil fuel, but the EU will count it as a green investment (The Conversation) The price of polluting is soaring: report (Eco-Business) 24 hours with… Global Wind Energy Council Asia head Liming Qiao (Eco-Business) Great Barrier Reef: cooler weather reduces threat of mass bleaching outbreak this summer (The Guardian) Nuclear fusion heat record a ‘huge step’ in quest for new energy source (The Guardian) . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Risk takers as drivers of change

Risk taking isn’t always advised as a desired course of action, but in many ways, it is the only way in which humanity has ever progressed and can ever hope to progress. This is as true in the sustainability field as any other. Risk taking includes a wide variety of attitudes and actions. Many of the barriers to shifting to sustainable living are in fact arbitrary “barriers of fear”. The politician unwilling to drive regulation as they listen to scaremongering about job losses; the boss unwilling to invest in new technologies based on shareholder sentiment; the educators unwilling to adapt and adjust the curriculum to a more fit-for-purpose learning environment for those who will inherit our mess; the individuals unwilling to change engrained habits. And the complexity of our interactions means that the unwillingness of one actor to change forces an inability to change on other actors. How can I buy plastic free drinks of only plastic bottled drinks are available t . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Community dialogue and data

Late 2021, we took the first group of students through the UNITAR Youth Ambassador Asia-Pacific Programme. Part of the learning framework was based on the Systems Work of Social Change (Rayner & Bonicci). This emphasized, among other things, the crucial nature of primary actors in successful alleviation of social issues. Essentially, this means that those living the experience are the ones who need to be empowered and equipped to determine and implement the solutions they see fit. I was struck by the sheer number of case studies in the book and now see further examples in many places. Here is a great case study from the Leave No One Behind Initiative in India, published in IISD. It shows several examples of women from marginalized communities being empowered to at least seed the beginnings of potential remedies to the hardships they face, with a specific focus on healthcare access and all its ramifications. . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Sustainability round-up - interesting articles from around the web

Five Urgent Needs for Global Governance: UN Secretary-General Sets Priorities for 2022 (IISD) Safe havens for coral reefs will be almost non-existent at 1.5°C of global warming – new study (The Conversation) How a humble mushroom could save forests and fight climate change (The Conversation) Three reasons why climate change models are our best hope for understanding the future (The Conversation) 22 ways to live better in 2022 (Eco-Business) ‘A deranged pyroscape’: how fires across the world have grown weirder (The Guardian) Extreme weather has cost Europe about €500bn over 40 years (The Guardian) . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Women and girls in science

The coming Friday is International Day of Women and Girls in Science. Science and gender equality are both vital for the achievement of the internationally agreed development goals, including the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Yet women and girls continue to be excluded from participating fully in science. Addressing this contributes not only directly to SDGs 5 and 10 but to all the SDGs as all solutions will include some form of scientific input and to diminish the contribution of half the population can only be a negative impact. . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Heritage is part of sustainability too

The headline areas of sustainability and the SDGs are quite rightly those that present an existential threat to the future of humanity, but to paraphrase many a perspective, will what we have left be worth living in? To this purpose we must not neglect the lesser elements of sustainability which include preserving enough of our heritage to maintain understanding of the cultures we have evolved through in space and time. Our heritage provides both value in its own right as well as the potential for us to learn. The Conversation has a good piece on climate impacts on heritage artifacts here. . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

Sustainability round-up - interesting articles from around the web

Coffee may become more scarce and expensive thanks to climate change (The Conversation) The race to protect the food of the future – why seed banks alone are not the answer (The Conversation) Will the fossil energy crisis make renewables more popular? (Eco-Business) Asia must spend $2.5 trillion annually to meet 2050 climate deadline (Eco-Business) 2022 marks an important year for environmental milestones (EU) Carbon offsetting is not warding off environmental collapse – it’s accelerating it (The Guardian) Female leadership is good for the world. Just look at Barbados (The Guardian) . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading

World Wetlands Day 2022

Wetlands do not conjure up particularly strong emotions. In fact, many people might be put off by the term. But wetlands are one of the most important habitats we have, and they are among the most threatened, especially with so much already having been lost. They cover only around 6 per cent of the Earth’s land surface, 40 per cent of all plant and animal species live or breed in wetlands. Approximately 87% of all wetlands have been lost to human development over the last 300 years and 35% of that has happened since 1970. This has meant that there is a specific convention – Ramsar – for their protection. Not only are they so important for living species, the soils of wetlands store twice as much carbon as all forests. Draining them releases this. So there are just two super important reasons to consider what you can do to encourage or even better cause the protection and possible replenishment of wetlands on this World Wetlands Day. . . .

By Danny Harrington, MD ITS Education Asia | Comments Continue Reading
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