Category Archives: Pines

What Really Happens When You Recycle Wrong?

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What Really Happens When You Recycle Wrong?

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So is coal great again or what?

Some of these articles are sensationalized very nearly to the point of inaccuracy. Others are cases of “elaborate misinformation.”

A review from Climate Feedback, a group of scientists who survey climate change news to determine whether it’s scientifically sound, looked at the 25 most-shared stories last year that focused on the science of climate change or global warming.

Of those, only 11 were rated as credible, meaning they contained no major inaccuracies. Five were considered borderline inaccurate. The remaining nine, including New York Magazine’s viral “The Uninhabitable Earth,” were found to have low or very low credibility. However, even the top-rated articles were noted as somewhat misleading. (Read the reviews here.) 

“We see a lot of inaccurate stories,” Emmanuel Vincent, a research scientist at the University of California and the founder of Climate Feedback, told Grist. Each scientist at Climate Feedback holds a Ph.D. and has recently published articles in peer-reviewed journals.

Vincent says that the New York Times and Washington Post are the two main sources that Climate Feedback has found “consistently publish information that is accurate and influential.” (He notes that Grist’s “Ice Apocalypse” by Eric Holthaus also made the credibility cut.)

“You need to find the line between being catchy and interesting without overstepping what the science can support,” he says.

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So is coal great again or what?

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Climate change hits businesses where it hurts: their wallets.

Some of these articles are sensationalized very nearly to the point of inaccuracy. Others are cases of “elaborate misinformation.”

A review from Climate Feedback, a group of scientists who survey climate change news to determine whether it’s scientifically sound, looked at the 25 most-shared stories last year that focused on the science of climate change or global warming.

Of those, only 11 were rated as credible, meaning they contained no major inaccuracies. Five were considered borderline inaccurate. The remaining nine, including New York Magazine’s viral “The Uninhabitable Earth,” were found to have low or very low credibility. However, even the top-rated articles were noted as somewhat misleading. (Read the reviews here.) 

“We see a lot of inaccurate stories,” Emmanuel Vincent, a research scientist at the University of California and the founder of Climate Feedback, told Grist. Each scientist at Climate Feedback holds a Ph.D. and has recently published articles in peer-reviewed journals.

Vincent says that the New York Times and Washington Post are the two main sources that Climate Feedback has found “consistently publish information that is accurate and influential.” (He notes that Grist’s “Ice Apocalypse” by Eric Holthaus also made the credibility cut.)

“You need to find the line between being catchy and interesting without overstepping what the science can support,” he says.

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Climate change hits businesses where it hurts: their wallets.

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Business interests are winning out over science under Trump.

Over the next year, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People will install solar panels on 20 households and 10 community centers, train 100 people in solar job skills, and push for equitable solar access policies in at least five states across the U.S.

“Underserved communities cannot be left behind in a clean energy transition,” Derrick Johnson, NAACP President and CEO, said in a statement about the new Solar Equity Initiative. “Clean energy is a fundamental civil right which must be available to all, within the framework of a just transition.”

The initiative began on Martin Luther King Jr. Day by installing solar panels on the Jenesse Center, a transitional housing program in L.A. for survivors of domestic abuse. The NAACP estimated that solar energy could save the center nearly $49,000 over the course of a lifetime, leaving more resources to go toward services for women and families.

Aside from the financial benefits, the NAACP points out that a just transition to clean energy will improve health outcomes. Last year, a report by the Clean Air Task Force and the NAACP found that black Americans are exposed to air nearly 40 percent more polluted than their white counterparts. Pollution has led to 138,000 asthma attacks among black school children and over 100,000 missed school days each year.

It’s just a start, but this new initiative could help alleviate the disproportionate environmental burdens that black communities face.

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Business interests are winning out over science under Trump.

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Most members of the National Park Service Advisory Board got so frustrated they quit.

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Most members of the National Park Service Advisory Board got so frustrated they quit.

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Born to Be Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life – Dacher Keltner

READ GREEN WITH E-BOOKS

Born to Be Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life

Dacher Keltner

Genre: Life Sciences

Price: $1.99

Publish Date: October 5, 2009

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

Seller: W. W. Norton


“A fact-filled, fun, and enlightened peek into our minds and hearts.” —Daniel Goleman, author of Emotional Intelligence In this startling study of human emotion, Dacher Keltner investigates an unanswered question of human evolution: If humans are hardwired to lead lives that are "nasty, brutish, and short," why have we evolved with positive emotions like gratitude, amusement, awe, and compassion that promote ethical action and cooperative societies? Illustrated with more than fifty photographs of human emotions, Born to Be Good takes us on a journey through scientific discovery, personal narrative, and Eastern philosophy. Positive emotions, Keltner finds, lie at the core of human nature and shape our everyday behavior—and they just may be the key to understanding how we can live our lives better. Some images in this ebook are not displayed owing to permissions issues.

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Born to Be Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life – Dacher Keltner

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Superfund sites are in danger of flooding, putting millions of Americans at risk.

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Superfund sites are in danger of flooding, putting millions of Americans at risk.

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Georgia could have put an end to nuclear plant construction in the U.S., but it didn’t.

Growing up in the ’90s, some of my favorite people in the world were Bill Nye, Cookie Monster, and Wishbone. That definitely did NOT make me one of the cooler kids at school, who got to chat about cable TV shows I knew nothing about.

But hey, my buddy Bill gave me the crazy idea that science was fun. Wishbone instilled in me a love of reading. And Sesame Street legit taught me, a new immigrant kid from the Philippines, how to speak English.

Now I write about the environment, with a special focus on all the nerdy, science-y, but supremely important environmental stuff that impacts kids in marginalized communities. Those are the kids who might rely on things like public broadcasting to close educational gaps — just like I did. It helped me get to where I am today.

So when Bill Nye resurfaced in 2017 in a big way — with a new series on Netflix and in a new documentary about the man behind the bow tie, I was obsessed. In the film, he meets YouTubers taking the torch when it comes to making fun, open-to-anyone educational videos. It’s all part of his quest to protect science education and keep it accessible to kids. And what makes the documentary even cooler for me? It’s on PBS.

Justine Calma is a Grist fellow.

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Georgia could have put an end to nuclear plant construction in the U.S., but it didn’t.

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As global temperatures rise, more refugees will flee to Europe.

Growing up in the ’90s, some of my favorite people in the world were Bill Nye, Cookie Monster, and Wishbone. That definitely did NOT make me one of the cooler kids at school, who got to chat about cable TV shows I knew nothing about.

But hey, my buddy Bill gave me the crazy idea that science was fun. Wishbone instilled in me a love of reading. And Sesame Street legit taught me, a new immigrant kid from the Philippines, how to speak English.

Now I write about the environment, with a special focus on all the nerdy, science-y, but supremely important environmental stuff that impacts kids in marginalized communities. Those are the kids who might rely on things like public broadcasting to close educational gaps — just like I did. It helped me get to where I am today.

So when Bill Nye resurfaced in 2017 in a big way — with a new series on Netflix and in a new documentary about the man behind the bow tie, I was obsessed. In the film, he meets YouTubers taking the torch when it comes to making fun, open-to-anyone educational videos. It’s all part of his quest to protect science education and keep it accessible to kids. And what makes the documentary even cooler for me? It’s on PBS.

Justine Calma is a Grist fellow.

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As global temperatures rise, more refugees will flee to Europe.

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Let’s hold off on praising China’s new carbon-pricing market

This week, China announced it has launched a nationwide carbon-trading market, with the intent of slowing down its growing climate footprint and capping its emissions as soon as possible.

Most news coverage has labeled the move as a major development in the global fight against climate change. Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, who has devoted his post-political career to fighting warming, hailed the announcement as “a tipping point in the climate crisis.”

However, some close observers in China and elsewhere suggest we pump the brakes on celebrating this week’s news. Several critical details of the Chinese plan are still outstanding, they say. Most importantly: We still don’t know what the “cap” on its cap-and-trade plan will be, how emissions permits will be distributed, or what they will set the target carbon price to.

The Guardian reports that the Chinese government has been toying with the idea of nationwide carbon trading for more than a decade, so the revelation doesn’t come out of nowhere. And as the world’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases, any effort to limit the country’s pollution is hugely important.

But Emil Dimantchev, a climate policy researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, wrote earlier this year that it’s premature to call China’s new policy ambitious without the details of the trading scheme being in place. In a series of tweets this week following the announcement, Dimantchev doubled-down on that assessment.

“The policy is still missing the crucial features that will determine whether it will be a success,” he tweeted.

Separate reporting by Beijing-based carbon-market analyst Stian Reklev revealed that for its first two years the new Chinese system will only involve simulated trades. That, obviously, will have no impact on emissions in China or elsewhere.

“It’s clear the market is nowhere near ready to be launched, and they’re only doing this because [Chinese President] Xi Jinping promised the market would start in 2017,” Reklev tweeted this week.

The World Bank currently tracks 47 carbon-pricing initiatives worldwide that are either already in existence or set to open soon. The only one even remotely the size of China’s proposed market is the European Union’s Emissions Trading Scheme — a hugely complex system with mixed success, which covers about 4 percent of global emissions. Other carbon trading platforms in Washington, California, and in the northeastern U.S. police an additional 1 percent or so of global emissions — but none of them caps pollution across the entire economy of the states involved.

If China’s market eventually covers its whole economy, it would be responsible for about 30 percent of global emissions, more than double all currently existing carbon markets combined. So the higher China sets its carbon price, the more of an impact it will have on emissions elsewhere. A high price on Chinese carbon could motivate other pricing schemes around the world to raise their targets.

The world needs ambitious climate policy from China in order to meet the agreed-upon Paris goals of limiting global warming — especially with the United States’ government in the process of plopping itself on the sidelines.

This step from China is without question in the right direction. But the fact that the scheme is still apparently in the design phase should be a sign that the Asian behemoth may not yet be the planetary savior many are hoping for.

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Let’s hold off on praising China’s new carbon-pricing market

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