Video available at Wilson Center site
The environmental challenges of climate change, energy demands, and natural resource loss continue to mount. World population hit seven billion on Halloween and is projected to go to ten billion if not more. The first decade of the 21st century was the warmest in 130 years of recorded global temperatures and 2010 was the warmest year yet recorded. Extinction rates are 1000 times base rates. The Amazon had the greatest drought in recorded history in 2010. Droughts, floods, wildfires, and probably intense tropical storms are becoming more frequent.
As the Administrator of the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), Martha Johnson is responsible for annual government purchases of over $65 billion and more than 360 million square feet of federal real estate. She will discuss GSA’s initiative to aggressively pursue a zero environmental footprint (ZEF) that will reduce waste, support innovation, and boost efficiency across federal buildings, operations, and acquisition.
"Excellence in climate communication has to do with public engagement – communication that expands the portion of the public that is engaged in this issue and enhances their degree of engagement," said Edward Maibach, director of the Center for Climate Change Communication at George Mason University.
Dr. Jane Lubchenco, Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator will discuss the fact that it is a critical time for our oceans and coasts. The oceans are changing; our uses of the oceans are changing; … our expectations and demands of the oceans and coastal areas are changing. The decisions we make now will impact the global health of the oceans for generations.
The environmental challenges of climate change, ecosystem change, energy demands, and demographic trends continue to mount. The first decade of the 21st century was the warmest in 130 years of recorded global temperatures and 2010 may be close to the warmest year yet recorded. Extreme events related to the environment – such as the major wildfires in Russia, the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, devastating floods in Pakistan and Australia, and record drought in the Amazon basin – are becoming more frequent.
“Hope in a Changing Climate” film screening at Mason's Arlington campus. The film will be followed by a co-facilitated discussion by Jonathan Halperin (Executive Director of the Environmental Education Media Project, Member of Climate and Society at Mason) and Dann Sklarew (Associate Professor with the Environmental Science and Policy Department at Mason.)
Population growth, land use change, global warming, degradation of ecosystems and loss of biodiversity - we have entered an era where we can no longer assume that human actions have small consequence for the planet. We have no choice but to manage the planet - to make responsible choices resource exploitation, energy use, environmental protection, food production.
Here are my notes and observations from COP15 to date. By being right inside the Bella Center, I am able to bring you the latest news that I can read from the Washington Post, NY Times and International Herald Tribune from my iPhone over the free and open WiFi. I can also report on very interesting views expressed at Side Events, where the speakers were able to read the Times before I did. (I believe that there are more camera men here than reporters, more reporters than NGO observers, and more observers than national delegates. I must say that I am particularly ashamed that I have to walk around without a cameraman following me.)