This article – UN Says Climate Genocide Is Coming. It’s Actually Worse Than That – in NY magazine is worth reading and sharing.

One (sort of) positive:

Which is why it is so remarkable that the tone of this report is so alarmist — it’s not that the news about climate has changed, but that the scientific community is finally discarding caution in describing the implications of its own finding.

Climate inflection point

Says The New Scientist:

The history of humanity is one of stupidity, denial and dawdling followed by heroic rearguard action to prevail against all odds. The climate crisis is close to that inflection point. Does our generation have the gumption? It is time to find out.

We hope they will. The New York Times says growing food at work is a real trend. And it’s one our editor called for in his own town just the other month.

Will it last though?  There are so many reasons for it not to: liability worries, managers facing pressures to keep employees at their desks, disillusionment when things don’t grow, bugs.

Well, that would explain the silence.

As David Papineau notes in last Sunday’s Observer, “if there are extraterrestrial civilisations out there, they don’t seem very interested in us. They don’t visit, they don’t phone, they don’t even send radio signals. Not a peep.”

But what if they could communicate but just choose not to? The silence from space might, after all, be that of a galactic-scale Meeting in progress. Thinking of it that way changes the nature of what we are hearing, perhaps.

So we enjoyed this piece in the New York Times and the news that interest among Americans in living together in deliberate but non-traditional groups is rising.

Geoengineering — trying to change the Earth’s climate on a global scale by doing things like seeding the upper atmosphere with reflective particles — is getting attention from serious scientists.

But not so fast, says James Lovelock, originator of the hugely influential ‘Gaia Hypothesis.‘  In an article in today’s Guardian, Lovelock says:

our ignorance of the Earth system is great; we know little more than an early 19th-century physician knew about the body. Geoengineering is like trying to cure pneumonia by immersing the patient in a bath of icy water; the fever would be cured but not the disease.

Better to leave the Earth to cleanse itself, says Lovelock, since our cure may be worse even than the ailment it currently suffers, both for the Earth and for us.

It used to be that frugal cheapskates like us were the odd ones out.   Now we’re trendy.  And we have a historian.

Could we actually be on the cusp of a new era of living sustainably and within our means?  Let’s hope.

We’ve voiced our concern here before that solar power generating plants still have an environmental footprint.

But this nifty graphic, by David McCandless of Information is Beautiful, places that worry within an impressively positive context.

– more on washing lines!

Other pressing duties have kept us from updating this site anything like as often as we’d have liked, but while we’ve been somewhat dormant it’s been interesting to see what has still brought people here.  Perhaps the number one subject on the site that has drawn in visitors over the past year is the issue of washing lines.

Laundry liberation, it seems, is a big deal for a lot of people.

Well, here’s another article on the same theme.

Even though it’s raining hard here in EarthQuaker land, we’re still being told to expect a drought this summer.  That makes us more than usually interested in issues of water management and conservation.

A good place to start for a global overview of the crises we face with water is this interview with Peter Gleick, founder and president of the Pacific Institute.