Dbytes #370 (20 March 2019)

Info, news & views for anyone interested in biodiversity conservation and good environmental decision making

“One in three of the women surveyed under 30 said they were ‘reconsidering having children or more children because I am increasingly worried that if I have children they will face an unsafe future from climate change’. In the 30–39 age range, the figure was still more than one in five (22.4 per cent).”
ACF’s New survey shows women will change their lives – and votes – for climate action


In this issue of Dbytes

1. The WMO issued ‘High level review of a wide range of proposed marine geoengineering techniques’
2. RBA warns of economic impacts of climate change
3. What makes conservation landowners tick?
4. Climate change: obsession with plastic pollution distracts attention from bigger environmental challenges
5. Guns, snares and bulldozers: new map reveals hotspots for harm to wildlife
6. Why the “Anthropocene” Is Not “Climate Change” and Why It Matters
7. Making better sense of Australia’s Environmental Impact Assessment

-~<>~-

1. The WMO issued ‘High level review of a wide range of proposed marine geoengineering techniques’

Recent developments in the climate change arena, including the Paris Agreement in 2015 and the publication of the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 °C, have noted the potential need for negative emission technologies to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere in order to limit temperature increase.

Adding iron or other nutrients into the oceans to enhance natural processes to draw carbon from the atmosphere and creating foams which float on the surface of the sea to reflect sunlight back into the atmosphere are among a wide range of geoengineering practices which have been put forward as potential tools for countering climate change.

But, in a new report, marine and social scientists are urging a precautionary approach towards these techniques which involve deliberate large-scale manipulation of the environment.

https://public.wmo.int/en/media/news/precautionary-approach-over-marine-geoengineering

-~<>~-

2. RBA warns of economic impacts of climate change

The Deputy Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia, Guy Debelle, has warned that climate change is affecting Australia’s economy and future financial stability and that understanding of climate change and its ramifications has become an essential part of developing economic models and frameworks that inform monetary policy decision-making.

Addressing a public forum hosted by the Centre for Policy Development, Mr Debelle warned that climate change was a long-term trend, rather than a cycle, and its impact would be ongoing. He noted that the insurance sector has responded to the increasing frequency of climatic events by repricing insurance against such events.

He observed that the fiscal impacts of a transition to a less carbon-intensive world is “clearly quite different depending on whether it is managed as a gradual process or is abrupt.  The trend changes aren’t likely to be smooth. There is likely to be volatility around the trend, with the potential for damaging outcomes from spikes above the trend.

The Environment Report

-~<>~-

3. What makes conservation landowners tick?

Conservation landowners exert influence over the biodiversity outcomes of privately protected areas. Understanding why landowners participate, their satisfaction with their involvement, and the challenges they face can improve the effectiveness of these programs.

Please keep to the path

-~<>~-

4. Climate change: obsession with plastic pollution distracts attention from bigger environmental challenges

“…That’s not to say plastic pollution isn’t a problem, rather there are much bigger problems facing the world we live in – specifically climate change. In October last year the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) produced a report detailing drastic action needed to limit global warming to 1.5˚C. Much of the news focused on what individuals could do to reduce their carbon footprint – although some articles did also indicate the need for collective action. Despite the importance of this message, environmental news has been dominated by the issues of plastic pollution. So it’s not surprising that so many people think ocean plastics are the most serious environmental threat to the planet. But this is not the case…”

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2019/02/climate-change-obsession-with-plastic-pollution-distracts-attention-from-bigger-environmental-challenges

-~<>~-

5. Guns, snares and bulldozers: new map reveals hotspots for harm to wildlife

The biggest killers of wildlife globally are unsustainable hunting and harvesting, and the conversion of huge swathes of natural habitat into farms, housing estates, roads and other industrial activities. There is little doubt that these threats are driving the current mass extinction crisis. Yet our understanding of where these threats overlap with the locations of sensitive species has been poor. This limits our ability to target conservation efforts to the most important places. In our new study, published today in Plos Biology, we mapped 15 of the most harmful human threats – including hunting and land clearing – within the locations of 5,457 threatened mammals, birds and amphibians globally. We found that 1,237 species – a quarter of those assessed – are impacted by threats that cover more than 90% of their distributions. These species include many large, charismatic mammals such as lions and elephants. Most concerningly of all, we identified 395 species that are impacted by threats across 100% of their range.

https://theconversation.com/guns-snares-and-bulldozers-new-map-reveals-hotspots-for-harm-to-wildlife-113361

-~<>~-

6. Why the “Anthropocene” Is Not “Climate Change” and Why It Matters

Slowing climate change is crucial but navigating its challenges is only possible if it is understood as one facet of planetary overshoot. The challenges of our altered, unpredictable Earth System cannot be met by technological tinkering within the very systems that pushed it over the edge in the first place. There’s nothing for it but to roll up our sleeves and begin the hard work of transforming our political and economic systems with the aims of decency and resilience.

https://www.asiaglobalonline.hku.hk/anthropocene-climate-change/

-~<>~-

7. Making better sense of Australia’s Environmental Impact Assessment
Surely we can put an end to overlap and duplication
[Sustainability Bites]
“Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is a cornerstone of our system for protecting environmental values in Australia. A long standing problem with the EIA process has been the need to do them to meet both state and federal requirements.
You wouldn’t think that eliminating duplication and overlap between federal and state EIA processes (without compromising environmental outcomes) would be that hard. And yet so it has proven to be.
To date, there have been four attempts to address this issue, on each occasion by creating a mechanism under which the Commonwealth could accredit state EIA processes. Success has been limited and, with an election coming on, some are returning to this rather muddy policy watering hole…”

https://sustainabilitybites.home.blog/2019/03/19/making-better-sense-of-australias-environmental-impact-assessment/

-~<>~-


About Dbytes

Dbytes is a weekly eNewsletter presenting news and views on biodiversity conservation and environmental decision science. For the past decade Dbytes has been supported by a variety of research networks and primarily the Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions (CEED). From 2019 Dbytes is being produced by David Salt (Ywords).

If you have any contributions to Dbytes (ie, opportunities and resources that you think might think be of value to other Dbyte readers) please send them to David.Salt@anu.edu.au. Please keep them short and provide a link for more info.

Anyone is welcome to receive Dbytes. If you would like to received it, send me an email and I’ll add you to the list.

David Salt

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s