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Flying shame: Greta Thunberg gave up flights to fight climate change. Should you? - Vox
“Greta Thunberg gave up flights to fight climate change. Should you?”



“Rosén said there isn’t anything unique in the Swedish soul that has made so many across the country so concerned about flying. “This could have happened anywhere,” she said. “We’ve had some good coincidences that have worked together to create this discussion.”

Nonetheless, the movement to reduce flying has created a subculture in Sweden, complete with its own hashtags on social media. Beyond flygskam, there’s flygfritt (flight free), and vi stannar på marken (we stay on the ground).

Rosén said that judging by all the organizing she’s seen in other countries, she thinks Sweden won’t long hold the lead in forgoing flying. “I wouldn’t be surprised if the Germans would follow us soon,” she said.”



“Scientists are having a hard time overlooking their own air travel emissions

Kim Cobb, a climate scientist at the Georgia Institute of Technology, has curbed her air travel by 75 percent.

“I really started thinking about my carbon footprint after Trump was elected,” she said. “Doing my climate science and donating to the right candidates was never going to be enough, even if you took that to scale.”

She created a spreadsheet to track her personal carbon footprint and found that flying formed the dominant share of her emissions. “By the end of 2017, 85 percent of my carbon footprint was related to flying,” she said.

Much of Cobb’s research — examining geochemical signals in coral to reconstruct historical climate variability — required her to travel to field sites in the equatorial Pacific.

While she doesn’t anticipate giving up those visits entirely, Cobb has taken on more research projects closer to home, including an experiment tracking sea level rise in Georgia. She has drastically reduced her attendance at academic conferences and this year plans to give a keynote address remotely for an event in Sydney.

[embedded tweet by Susan Michie (@SusanMichihttps://twitter.com/SusanMichie/status/1144799976377200641e):

"I have begun replying to invitations “Due to the climate emergency, I am cutting down on air travel …” Have been pleasantly surprised how many take up my offer of pre-recorded talk & Skype Q&A’s @GreenUCL @UCLPALS @UCLBehaveChange https://twitter.com/russpoldrack/status/1144368198227120128 "

quoting a tweet by Russ Poldrack (@russpoldrack):
https://twitter.com/russpoldrack/status/1144368198227120128

"I’ve decided to eliminate air travel for talks, conferences, and meetings whenever possible. Read more about my reasons here: http://www.russpoldrack.org/2019/06/why-i-will-be-flying-less.html "]

Cobb is just one of a growing number of academics, particularly those who study the earth, who have made efforts in recent years to cut their air travel.

While she doesn’t anticipate making a dent in the 2.6 million pounds per second of greenhouse gases that all of humanity emits, Cobb said her goal is to send a signal to airlines and policymakers that there is a demand for cleaner aviation.

But she noted that her family is spread out across the country and that her husband’s family lives in Italy. She wants her children to stay close to her relatives, and that’s harder to do without visiting them. “The personal calculus is much, much harder,” she said.

She also acknowledged that it might be harder for other researchers to follow in her footsteps, particularly those just starting out. As a world-renowned climate scientist with tenure at her university, Cobb said she has the clout to turn down conference invitations or request video conferences. Younger scientists still building their careers may need in-person meetings and events to make a name for themselves. So she sees it as her responsibility to be careful with her air travel. “People like me have to be even more choosy,” she said.

Activists and diplomats who work on international climate issues are also struggling to reconcile their travel habits with their worries about warming. There is even a crowdfunding campaign for activists in Europe to sail to the United Nations climate conference in Chile later this year.

But perhaps the most difficult aspect of limiting air travel is the issue of justice. A minority of individuals, companies, and countries have contributed to the bulk of greenhouse gas emissions from flights and profited handsomely from it. Is it now fair to ask a new generation of travelers to fly less too?”



“Should you, dear traveler, feel ashamed to fly?

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts,” wrote Mark Twain in The Innocents Abroad. “Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things can not be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.”

Air travel has yielded immense benefits to humanity. Movement is the story of human civilization, and as mobility has increased, so too has prosperity. Airplanes, the fastest way to cross continents and oceans, have facilitated this. And while some countries have recently retreated from the world stage amid nationalist fervor, the ease of air travel has created a strong countercurrent of travelers looking to learn from other cultures.

Compared to other personal concessions for the sake of the environment, reducing air travel has a disproportionately high social cost. Give up meat and you eat from a different menu. Give up flying and you may never see some members of your family again.

So it’s hard to make a categorical judgment about who should fly and under what circumstances.

But if you’re weighing a plane ticket for yourself, Paul Thompson, a professor of philosophy who studies environmental ethics at Michigan State University, said there are several factors to consider.

[embedded tweet by @flyingless:
https://twitter.com/flyingless/status/1151524855982039046

"No need to tell me about your feelings of guilt. I see no reason for you to feel guilty. You already excel at ethical thinking in many other areas of your life and relationships. Judge for yourself what the times require of you, personally and politically. Act or don’t act."]

First, think about where you can have the most meaningful impact on climate change as an individual — and it might not be changing how you are personally getting around. If advocacy is your thing, you could push for more research and development in cleaner aviation, building high-speed rail systems, or pricing the greenhouse gas emissions of dirty fuels. “That’s the first thing that I think I would be focused on, as opposed to things that would necessarily discourage air travel,” Thompson said. Voting for leaders who make fighting climate change a priority would also help.

If you end up on a booking site, think about why you’re flying and if your flight could be replaced with a video call.

Next, consider what method of travel has the smallest impact on the world, within your budget and time constraints. If you are hoping to come up with a numerical threshold, be aware that the math can get tricky. Online carbon footprint calculators can help.

And if you do choose to fly and feel shame about it, well, it can be a good thing. “I think it’s actually appropriate to have some sense of either grieving or at least concern about the loss you experience that way,” Thompson said. Thinking carefully about the trade-offs you’re making can push you toward many actions that are more beneficial for the climate, whether that’s flying less, offsetting emissions, or advocating for more aggressive climate policies.

Nonetheless, shame is not a great feeling, and it’s hard to convince people they need more of it. But Rosén says forgoing flying is a point of pride, and she’s optimistic that the movement to stay grounded will continue to take off.”
climatechange  travel  carbonemissions  2019  gretathunberg  sweden  flight  airplanes  aviation  flygskam  guilt  shame  activism  sustainability  globalwarming  majarosén  arctic  norway  germany  science  scientists  carbonoffsets  offsets  electrofuels  carbonfootprint  kimcobb  academia  susanmichie  russpoldrack  highered  education  highereducation  flying  flyingshame  flightshame  emissions  airlines  climate 
7 weeks ago by robertogreco
Vox Borders - YouTube - YouTube
"Reporting from six borders around the world, Emmy-nominated journalist Johnny Harris investigates the human stories behind the lines on a map in a new series for Vox.com

The six-part documentary series airs Tuesdays starting October 17th.

For additional content, travel dispatches, and more visit http://www.vox.com/borders "

[VOX BORDERS S1 • E1
Divided island: How Haiti and the DR became two worlds
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4WvKeYuwifc

VOX BORDERS S1 • E2
It's time to draw borders on the Arctic Ocean
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wx_2SVm9Jgo

VOX BORDERS S1 • E3
Inside North Korea's bubble in Japan
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qBfyIQbxXPs

VOX BORDERS S1 • E4
How the US outsourced border security to Mexico
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xbt0ACMbiA

VOX BORDERS S1 • E5
Building a border at 4,600 meters
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ECch2g1_6PQ

VOX BORDERS S1 • E6
Europe’s most fortified border is in Africa
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LY_Yiu2U2Ts ]
borders  haiti  dominicanrepublic  arctic  arcticocean  japan  northkorea  korea  mexico  us  centralamerica  border  2017  spain  morocco  china  nepal  españa 
november 2017 by robertogreco
SURF IN SIBERIA ARCTIC OCEAN 5 on Vimeo
"Episode 5 "The Arctic ocean. Tundra." The movie tells us about the Russian surfers riding in the severe conditions of The Far North. Only few ones have tried surfing at this latitude, even fewer have tried it in Russia. The movie's been shot during one year at different locations in the Murmansk region. The camera crew has filmed different seasons, conditions and moods of those sites. Having overcome all of the difficulties and having been inspired by the northern spirits, our heroes share their impressions about the places they've visited, the past of our country and their childhood.

Director - DOP Konstantin Kokorev
Operators Elisey Gladnikov, Alex Fetsov
Surfers Konstantin Kokorev, Sergey Rasshivaev, Nikolay Rahmatov
Photographers Tatiana Elisarieva, Andrey Artukhov, Konstantin Kokorev
Sound design Andrey Cherniy"

[See also:

SURF IN SIBERIA ZIMA 1
https://vimeo.com/92389180

SURF IN SIBERIA LETO 2
https://vimeo.com/110112095

SURF IN SIBERIA VESNA 3
https://vimeo.com/123529903

SURF IN SIBERIA AUTUMN 4
https://vimeo.com/147196671 ]
surf  surfing  siberia  2016  russia  vi:warrenellis  video  film  tundra  arctic 
july 2016 by robertogreco
Cristina Mittermeier (@cristinamittermeier) • Instagram
"Cristina Mittermeier Photography and pen are the tools I have chosen to illustrate the fragile place where indigenous cultures and nature intersect"

[See also: http://www.cristinamittermeier.com/
https://twitter.com/cmittermeier ]
cristinamittermeier  via:anne  anthropology  photography  nature  ethnography  culture  amazonrainfoest  arctic  indigenous  papuanewguinea  madagascar  africa  instagram  instragrams 
july 2015 by robertogreco
Orion Magazine | The Rules of the River
"At midnight on the Toklat River in the Alaska Range, the thermometer recorded ninety-three degrees. The sun, dragging anchor in the northwest sky, fired rounds of heat against the cabin. I was lying naked on the bunk, slapping mosquitos. Next to the wall, my husband lay completely covered by a white sheet, as still and dismayed as a corpse. He would rather be hot than bitten, and I would rather be bitten than hot.

I had come to the Toklat River to think about global warming, and it wasn’t going well. The week’s heat was breaking all-time records, drawing a new spike on the graph of jaggedly rising temperatures in Alaska. The average day is now four degrees warmer than just a few decades ago, and seven degrees warmer in winter. The Arctic is heating twice as fast as the rest of the world.

Furious and despairing, I had no chance of falling asleep that night. So I pulled on clothes and walked to the bank of the river.

The Toklat is a shallow river that braids across a good half mile of gravel beds, dried stream courses, and deep-dug channels. Sloshing with meltwater, it clatters along among islands and willow thickets. Banging rocks on cobblestones, surging into confused swells, the gray currents that night looked unpredictable and chaotic. But there were patterns.

A hydrologist once explained the rules of rivers to me as we walked a river-path. The dynamics of a river are manifestations of energy, he said. A fast, high-energy river will carry particles—the faster the river, the bigger the particle. But when it loses energy and slows, the river drops what it carries. So anything that slows a river can make a new landscape. It could be a stick lodged against a stone or the ribcage of a calf moose drowned at high water. Where the water piles against the obstacle, it drops its load, and an island begins to form. The island—in fact, any deposition—reshapes the current. As water curls around the obstacle, the current’s own force turns it upstream. Around one small change, the energy reorganizes itself entirely.

And here’s the point: no one pattern continues indefinitely; it always gives way to another. When there are so many obstacles and islands that a channel can no longer carry all its water and sediment, it crosses a stability threshold and the current carves a different direction. The change is usually sudden, often dramatic, the hydrologist said, a process called avulsion.

On the Toklat that night, the physics of the river played out right in front of me. A chunk of dirt and roots toppled from the bank, tumbled past me, and jammed against a mid-river stone. The current, dividing itself around the rootball, wrinkled sideways and turned upstream. It curled into pocket-eddies behind the roots. Even as I watched, the pockets filled with gravel and sand. A willow could grow there, and its roots could divide and slow the river further, gathering more gravel, creating a place where new life could take root.

I shoved a rock into the river. The sudden curl of current made me grin. Yes, we are caught up in a river rushing toward a hot, stormy, and dangerous planet. The river is powered by huge amounts of money invested in mistakes that are dug into the very structure of the land, a tangled braid of fearful politicians, preoccupied consumers, reckless corporations, and bewildered children—everyone, in some odd way, feeling helpless. Of course, we despair. How will we ever dam this flood?

But we don’t have to stop the river. Our work and the work of every person who loves this world—this one—is to make one small deflection in complacency, a small obstruction to profits, a blockage to business-as-usual, then another, and another, to change the energy of the flood. As it swirls around these snags and subversions, the current will slow, lose power, eddy in new directions, and create new systems and structures that change its course forever. On these small islands, new ideas will grow, creating thickets of living things and life-ways we haven’t yet imagined.

This is the work of disruption. This is the work of radical imagination. This is the work of witness. This is the steadfast, conscientious refusal to let a hell-bent economy force us to row its boat. This is much better than stewing in the night."
kathleendeanmoore  2014  via:anne  disruption  imagination  radicalism  witness  witnessing  conscientiousness  economics  work  complacency  globalwarming  alaska  arctic  toklatriver  rivers  patterns  continuity  change  avulsion 
june 2015 by robertogreco
Lemming Suicide Is a Myth That Was Perpetuated by Disney
"We've all heard that lemmings jump into the sea every year, drowning themselves because they are just following the herd. Except they don't. That's actually a myth invented for a Disney wildlife documentary, and it has blinded us to the truth about the weird lives of lemmings for decades.

Lemmings are small, fluffy rodents that live mostly in the Arctic, thriving on the snowy tundra in places like Norway, northern Alaska, and Siberia. One of the great mysteries of lemmings is their odd population cycle. Like many rodents, their population expands every few years. But among lemmings, this explosion is dramatic — every few years, their population grows 100 to 1000 times larger in just one winter season.

These events are often called lemming outbreaks because the rodents will migrate all over the place looking for food, even swimming across rivers and lakes to find plants and mosses to eat. Occasionally, they fall off rocks or cliffs as they scramble to find sustenance. Then, just as abruptly, their population crashes into near-extinction.

For centuries, legends have formed around this odd cycle. Where do the lemming outbreaks come from? And what happens to all of the rodents afterwards? One popular myth was that they all just jumped into the ocean and died. Back in 1958, Disney was making a documentary about Arctic wildlife, White Wilderness, and decided that legends were as good as facts. So they brought in a truck full of lemmings to throw into the Arctic ocean. First, they put a bunch of the lemmings on a big, snowy turntable to film them "running" toward some cliffs. Then they shoved hundreds of these poor little guys over the cliff, into the ocean, where they (not surprisingly) drowned after trying to swim.

Here is the original clip from White Wilderness, below. Knowing that these lemmings were deliberately shoved over the cliff and drowned makes this pretty upsetting, so be warned before watching.

This film is what gave rise to many sayings about how lemmings follow the herd no matter what. And of course it's misled many people into thinking that lemmings commit mass suicide on a regular basis.

The reality is actually just as mysterious as the legends. Lemmings are one of the only true Arctic rodents, and they prefer to reproduce in winter. During especially cold winters, or at chilly high altitudes, they will have far more offspring. Lemming population booms, according to researchers' observations, are dependent on icy cold weather. There are likely a few reasons for this, but most important would be that they've adapted to cold weather systems — when there's a long, intense winter, these little guys breed like crazy under the snow.

As for what causes the lemmings' massive population crash — we still aren't completely sure. We know for certain that it's not mass suicide, but we also know that more adult lemmings die during outbreak years. So the population is huge, but a lot more of the animals are dying than during a typical year.

This high lemming death rate could be because the expanded population suffers food shortages, or it could be caused by predators chowing down on these tasty creatures that are suddenly everywhere underfoot. Another possibility is that there is a lot more infanticide because so many males want to mate with females — and killing a female's brood will make her ready to mate again.

Because the most intriguing part of the lemmings' lifecycle takes place under the Arctic ice, it's been hard to observe them and find out what's driving their population flux. But one thing is for certain. With the Arctic warming, there are likely to be fewer and fewer lemming outbreaks. And nobody is really sure what that will do to the typical lemming population.

For now, lemmings remain a strange and adorable mystery of the tundra."

[I never bookmarked this when I used it in January: "In 1958, Disney made a film about big data. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xMZlr5Gf9yY More info: http://www.snopes.com/disney/films/lemmings.asp + http://factually.gizmodo.com/lemmings-dont-commit-mass-suicide-disney-pushed-them-o-1614038696 "
https://twitter.com/rogre/status/556196381258293248 ]
lemmings  disney  1958  nature  animals  propoganda  data  bigdata  herdmentality  slander  arctic  tundra  annaleenewitz  2015 
april 2015 by robertogreco
Qallunaat! Why White People Are Funny by Mark Sandiford - NFB
"This documentary pokes fun at the ways in which Inuit people have been treated as “exotic” documentary subjects by turning the lens onto the strange behaviours of Qallunaat (the Inuit word for white people). The term refers less to skin colour than to a certain state of mind: Qallunaat greet each other with inane salutations, repress natural bodily functions, complain about being cold, and want to dominate the world. Their odd dating habits, unsuccessful attempts at Arctic exploration, overbearing bureaucrats and police, and obsession with owning property are curious indeed.

A collaboration between filmmaker Mark Sandiford and Inuit writer and satirist Zebedee Nungak, Qallunaat! brings the documentary form to an unexpected place in which oppression, history, and comedy collide."

[via: https://twitter.com/hautepop/status/500408331211931648 ]
documentary  towatch  ethnography  marksandiford  inuit  qallunaat  arctic  anthropology  film 
august 2014 by robertogreco
Andrea Polli [via: http://artsinstitute.stanford.edu/aida/polli.html ]
"Andrea Polli is a digital media artist living in New Mexico. Her work with science, technology & media has been presented widely in over 100 presentations, exhibitions and performances internationally, has been recognized by numerous grants, residencies and awards… Her work has been reviewed by the Los Angeles Times, Art in America, Art News, NY Arts and others. She has published several book chapters, audio CDs, DVDs and papers in print…

She currently works in collaboration with atmospheric scientists to develop systems for understanding storm and climate through sound (called sonification). Recent projects include: a spatialized sonification of highly detailed models of storms that devastated the New York area; a series of sonifications of climate in Central Park; and a real-time multi-channel sonification and visualization of weather in the Arctic. In 2007/2008 she spent seven weeks in Antarctica on a National Science Foundation funded project. http://www.90degreessouth.org "
arctic  antarctica  data  andreapolli  sonification  visualization  sound  art  antarctic 
november 2012 by robertogreco
Immerse yourself in the sounds of the Arctic (Wired UK)
"Adams, Plaid and Persen combined the poem with electronic music and the ambisonic field recordings to produce a piece titled Nord Rute -- the first in a four-part collection of performances about indiginous peoples titled The Compass Series, which merge poetry from Valkaeapää, music from Plaid and ambient audio from Adams. Nord Rute is a narrative account of the Sami people's annual migration.

The resulting performance is described as a "three dimensional psycho-acoustic experience" and an "ambisonic narrative evocation". During a performance the floor is covered with reindeer pelts and surrounded by speakers that create a plane of sound within which blindfolded audience members can immerse themselves in the atmosphere of the journey across the frozen wastes. To enhance the experience, there'll be absolutely no heating -- blankets will be provided and schnapps will be served instead."
ambient  surroundsound  ambisonics  rossadams  sháman  korpiklaani  music  singing  joik  yoik  nomadism  nomads  sound  sápmi  russia  finland  sweden  norway  sami  tundra  arctic  2010 
february 2012 by robertogreco
“The Species Problem” by Allison Martell | The Walrus | April 2011
"IF IT WAS clear to David and Bella Kuptana what had happened to their hunting cabin on Victoria Island in the Arctic Archipelago last spring, it’s because there was a bear-shaped hole in the wall. Tracing the frozen coastline on snow machines, they found five more cabins in a similar state of ruin; behind one that appeared untouched, they spotted the rogue, making a break for the open plain. David, who took down his first polar bear when he was nine years old and has killed as many as three a year since then, felled the animal with his first shot, and immediately knew something was wrong. Its head was unusually wide, and its paws were brown. Except for all that matted white fur, it looked more like a grizzly."

"…About a month later, they got word: this was a hybrid, with both polar bear and grizzly ancestors, perhaps a freak consequence of climate change, which is pushing grizzlies into polar bear territory."
polarbears  grizzlybears  bears  hybrids  via:javierarbona  arctic  climatechange  animals  2011  canada  pizzly  grolarbears  polizzly  biology  zoology 
april 2011 by robertogreco
climateTimeMachine - Tracking Changes in Global Conditions over Time
"This series of visualizations show how some of the key indicators of climate change, such as temperature, sea ice extent and carbon dioxide concentrations, have changed in Earth's recent history."
climate  nasa  science  environment  globalwarming  visualization  climatechange  arctic  datavisualization  simulations 
july 2008 by robertogreco
BLDGBLOG: Transmitting live from below the Antarctic Ice
"we can now listen directly to "an acoustic live stream of the Antarctic underwater soundscape." This "live stream" is recorded via hydrophones attached to "an autonomous, wind and solar powered observatory located on the Ekström ice shelf."
bldgblog  arctic  life  sound  audio  water  oceans  soundscapes 
april 2008 by robertogreco
Several very cool animations, graphs, and photos of Northern Hemisphere... (kottke.org)
"...sea ice coverage are available from The Cryosphere Today. Among them: ice coverage time-lapse from 1978-2006 and 2007's ice retreat (the greatest ever recorded)"
northernhemmisphere  ice  arctic  cryosphere  iphone  globalwarming  images  visualization 
february 2008 by robertogreco
Today, Countries Battle for a Piece of the Arctic. Tomorrow? The Moon
"But what has gone unnoticed amid the international clamor is that the Arctic battle has implications that reach far beyond the top of Earth. The squabbling will be a prelude to — and even set the tone for — eventual sovereignty claims on the moon."
moon  economics  science  future  geopolitics  arctic 
november 2007 by robertogreco

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