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Monthly Archives: November 2010

NATO Secretary General wants to confront climate change

There is much debate over the extent that humans are responsible for climate change, and to what extent we need to take measures to confront it. Some claim we need to dramatically reduce emissions, others (like me) claim nothing at all needs to be done. However, I hope there is one thing we can all agree on: the military should play no role in confronting climate change. If the citizens of a country choose to get together and take some action to try and save the planet, that’s fine, but when a military (or collection of militaries) decides to save the planet themselves, that’s dangerous. I bring this up because the current Secretary General of NATO, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, wants the military to take action and confront climate change.
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Posted by on November 22, 2010 in Uncategorized

 

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The EPA's new ozone regulation will damage the US economy for no reason

There was much talk about the EPA’s recent declaration of CO2 as a pollutant, and rightfully so. However, there is something else the EPA is regulating which is also very harmful to the US economy: ozone levels. Not only do they currently regulate ozone levels, but they are about to tighten their regulations on them. Many areas in the US are projected to already be in violation as soon as the new regulations are in place.

The current limit on ozone level is 75 ppb (yes that’s parts per BILLION), which was set in 2008 by the Bush administration. The Obama administration has been wanting to change it ever since they got into office, and they were about to in August, but they didn’t. Why? Politics. They intentionally waited until after the election to change the regulation. It is expected to change at the end of this year.

It isn’t know exactly what level they will change the regulation to. It is expected between 60-70 ppb, but I expect it will be on the low end of that scale because changing the level from 75 to 70 hardly seems worth the amount of time they have invested in it. If the level is set at 60ppb, will that really be a problem? Absolutely. Here are a few articles from different areas in the US warning what is about to come:
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Posted by on November 14, 2010 in Uncategorized

 

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The Little REDD book

When most people hear the Little Red Book they think of communist book Quotations from Chairman Mao, required reading in China during the cultural revolution. It looked like this:

Considering this book has many negative events associated with it (police reportedly beat any citizen found not carrying it) it is surprising that an environmental group would choose to embrace this theme for a publication dedicated to preventing deforestation. In December 2008, the Global Canopy Programme released a book called The Little REDD Book, intended as a guide to UN negotiations on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD). Here is their webpage with an online version. Here is the pdf for easier reading. This is what the title page looks like: Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on November 13, 2010 in Uncategorized

 

The Convention on Biological Diversity promotes Social Diversity, not Biological

From the 18’th to the 29’th October this year the tenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 10) was held in Japan. This conference is held because of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), which is an United Nations international agreement which came into force in 1993. The purpose of the Convention is stated on their website:

The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) entered into force on 29 December 1993. It has 3 main objectives:

1. The conservation of biological diversity
2. The sustainable use of the components of biological diversity
3. The fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources

Judging by their stated objectives, the CBD exists to ensure the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity, now frequently called biodiversity. However, if we take a look at the outcomes decided at COP 10 instead of their stated goals, we can see that biological diversity takes a backseat to social diversity.

First of all, both the terms biological diversity and social diversity are odd concepts. “Conservation of Biological Diversity” implies that there is some correct ecological mix which is essential to maintain. This is absurd, as anyone who knows anything about the earth’s history can tell you. The idea that nations must band together to ensure the earth remains the same in its current snapshot of time is ludicrous and impossible. Social diversity is not mentioned in the COP 10 documents per se, but their heavy emphasis on gender, local communities and indigenous groups is what I mean when I use the term.

This document is entitled “UPDATING AND REVISION OF THE STRATEGIC PLAN FOR THE POST-2010 PERIOD”. It is basically a compilation of the decisions made at the meeting. Here is what I mean when I say their focus is on Social Diversity (excerpts from various places):

(a) Enable participation at all levels to foster the full and effective contributions of women,
indigenous and local communities, civil-society organizations, the private sector and stakeholders from
all other sectors in the full implementation of the objectives of the Convention and the Strategic Plan for
the period 2011-2020;

(d) Use the revised and updated national biodiversity strategies and action plans as effective
instruments for the integration of biodiversity targets into national development and poverty reduction
policies and strategies, national accounting, as appropriate, economic sectors and spatial planning
processes, by Government and the private sector at all levels;

9. Recalls decision IX/8, which called for gender mainstreaming in national biodiversity
strategies and action plans, and decision IX/24, in which the Conference of the Parties approved the
gender plan of action for the Convention, which among other things, requests Parties to mainstream a
gender perspective into the implementation of the Convention and promote gender equality in achieving
its three objectives, and requests Parties to mainstream gender considerations, where appropriate, in the
implementation of the Strategic Plan and its associated goals, targets and indicators.

Here is another document which directly addresses ‘gender mainstreaming’. Here is another (.doc file) which specifically addresses poverty reduction.

What exactly does “mainstream gender considerations” even mean, and how does it relate to biodiversity? Poverty reduction policies and strategies? Promoting gender equality? If the United Nations wants to promote gender equality (which seems dubious) why are they doing it under the guise of conserving biodiversity? If they want to help eradicate poverty (which they have tried to do unsuccessfully for decades) why are they addressing it in a biodiversity meeting? Because these meetings have nothing to do with biodiversity. They are about governance. Just look at the new IPBES. Its own stated goals are to improve governance.

The United Nations believes that it knows how to make women equal, eradicate poverty, keep the planet at a specific desired temperature, and keep the biological diversity of the planet at the correct level (whatever that is). They believe that the only way to achieve these goals is through more effective governance, and all these panels and meetings are attempts to place more power in their omnipotent hands. If only we would all just give up our sovereignty to these wise individuals, the world’s problems could be solved….

 
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Posted by on November 9, 2010 in Uncategorized