Climate change

What price should we put on a better climate?

Read the full story at GreenBiz.

Last year, I wrote about the efforts of hundreds of businesses worldwide that support — yes, support — putting a price on carbon. Despite all the members of Congress who question or deny whether climate change is happening, the business community is far less skeptical. You only have to look at the list of companies that signed onto a World Bank statement in support of pricing carbon: It includes energy companies, airlines, utilities and pension funds.

This show of support makes it clear that the business community recognizes climate change is an economic threat, that it expects some kind of carbon pricing eventually to be implemented and is preparing for it well in advance.

The question now is: What kind of price are we talking about?

The new GHG Protocol: What you need to report now

Read the full story at GreenBiz.

As Google, IKEA, Mars, H&M, Swiss Re and dozens of other companies drive down their greenhouse gas emissions — amid increasing scrutiny from consumers, investors and regulators — the methods for actually tallying their emissions have been a step behind.

The need for sophisticated emissions accounting tools is especially pronounced because many companies procure electricity through a mix of arrangements that can include generating electricity on their own,  purchasing power from renewable energy producers and buying energy from local utilities. Adding yet another layer of complexity is the increasingly global nature of business, leaving companies with a patchwork of energy production relationships around the world.

To standardize greenhouse gas emissions accounting for all these arrangements, the World Resources Institute on Tuesday released an updated Greenhouse Gas Protocol Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard. The new GHG Protocol Scope 2 Guidance covers electricity purchases of various stripes.

How ‘Warmest Ever’ Headlines and Debates Can Obscure What Matters About Climate Change

Read the full post at Dot Earth.

If you track developments related to human-driven global warming, my guess is you’re aware that the federal agencies that analyze climate conditions released the final word on 2014’s climate on Friday.

Both NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration firmly concluded that last year beat out 2010 and 2005, the previous years that had held the title of warmest since methodical record-keeping began in 1880…

Ever since, there’ve been salvos from critics decrying the definitiveness with which both agencies summarized the 2014 findings (each agency had a distinct methodology and slightly different conclusions).

I talked about this yesterday on Brian Lehrer’s radio show, making the point that it’s a distraction to focus on records — as the media and elected officials tend to do — given how year-to-year differences in global temperature are measured in a few hundredths of a degree Fahrenheit, and given the implicit uncertainty in such measurements. You can listen here.

Pharrell wants “literally all of humanity to harmonize” on climate change

Read the full story in Grist.

It’s hard to top the accomplishment of creating the greatest beat in the history of hip-hop, but goddammit, Pharrell is giving it a shot. The hip-hop mogul announced today at the World Economic Forum summit in Davos that he’s partnering with Al Gore to organize Live Earth: Road to Paris, a series of concerts that will take place across six continents over 24 hours on June 18. The goal? Getting one billion people to sign a petition stating that yes, they’d really like it if some semblance of constructive action were to take place at COP21.

Genre Guide: Clifi (Climate Fiction) in YA Lit

Read the full post at YALSA Teen Hub.

Climate fiction (CliFi) books (also known as eco-fiction) are ones that deal with climate change as part of the plot in which the characters struggle to survive. A lot of dystopian novels are clifi books because the breakdown of society is attributed to a catastrophic event like a nuclear war that affects the climate. I wanted to focus here on books where the climatic event was not directly caused by a man-made event like a war, but by nature, for the most part. Not all of these novels are realistic fiction or science fiction; at least one contains fantastical elements as well.

Focusing on lasting legacy prompts environmental action

Read the full story in Science Daily.

Prompting people to think about the legacy they want to leave for future generations can boost their desire and intention to take action on climate change, according to new research published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.

Citation for full paper: L. Zaval, E. M. Markowitz, E. U. Weber. How Will I Be Remembered? Conserving the Environment for the Sake of One’s Legacy. Psychological Science, 2015; DOI: 10.1177/0956797614561266

Spring Webinar Series: Engaging Stakeholders in Climate Adaptation

Mark your calendar for the dates of the NE CSC’s spring webinar series.  The series features several NE CSC-funded projects that highlight strong stakeholder engagement at various phases of research design and science delivery.