The Eco-Optimist

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jotting down notes in my search for (green) hope and awe in an otherwise jaded world

twitter.com/jmckizzle:

    Refugee Update

    2014 totals for internally displaced people (IDP):

    Summary:

    As of the end of 2013, sub-Saharan Africa had the largest total number of IDPs (12.5 million) followed by the Middle East and north Africa (9.1 million)

    63% of all IDPs globally come from just five countries affected by conflict: Syria, Colombia, Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Sudan.

    Around 8.2 million people were newly displaced in 2013, an increase by 24% compared with 2012.

    78% of all those newly displaced in 2013 came from just five countries affected by conflict: Syria, DRC, the Central African Republic (CAR), Nigeria and Sudan.

    The combined impact of conflict and natural hazards

    A natural hazard often forces IDPs to flee again, either from places where they had taken refuge from conflict, or from places to which they had returned or relocated.

    In the Philippines for example, those living in poorly equipped camps and makeshift shelters in central Mindanao were more exposed to flooding than their counterparts in the general population.

    Natural hazards and environmental degradation can also create tensions over scarce resources.

    In Nigeria, for example, deforestation, desertification and recurrent floods reduced sustainable access to land and other natural resources and forced many to head south in search of pastures and arable land. This put them in direct competition with local communities, leading to increased insecurity and violence.

    IDPs outside camps

    In a large proportion of countries monitored by IDMC, IDPs were living outside camps, mostly in towns and cities.

    This reality complicates protection and assistance due to significant information gaps concerning the number of IDPs, their specific vulnerabilities, needs, and living conditions.

    Key challenges for IDPs outside of camps include security of tenure, substandard housing and living conditions, and the risk of increased vulnerability and marginalisation, especially in towns and cities where they can be exposed to forced evictions.

    For example, Iraqi IDPs living in and around informal settlements in Baghdad are under constant threat of eviction, and similar concerns are faced by urban IDPs in countries such as Afghanistan, Somalia and Colombia.

    Source: iDMC

    — 2 months ago
    #idmc  #refugees  #internally displaced people  #conflict  #violence  #civil war  #politics  #environment  #natural resources  #iraq  #nigeria  #environmental degradation  #philippines  #drc  #syria  #sudan  #colombia 
    "It’s cold. Al Gore told me this wouldn’t happen."
    Ted Cruz, speaking about energy policy during an event on Monday at the Conservative Policy Summit.  (via officialssay)
    — 3 months ago with 513 notes
    #oy with the poodles already  #ted cruz  #climate change  #energy  #republicans  #politics  #america  #al gore 
    newyorker:

Evan Osnos travels to West Virginia to investigate the recent chemical spill that left hundreds of thousands of residents without access to water, and looks at the coal industry’s political influence in the state: http://nyr.kr/1pxUQaf
Photo Illustration by Spruce.

    newyorker:

    Evan Osnos travels to West Virginia to investigate the recent chemical spill that left hundreds of thousands of residents without access to water, and looks at the coal industry’s political influence in the state: http://nyr.kr/1pxUQaf

    Photo Illustration by Spruce.

    (Source: newyorker.com)

    — 3 months ago with 207 notes
    #coal  #politics  #pollution  #new yorker  #america  #west virginia  #energy  #water 
    Bill would allow states to regulate endangered species →

    Ergo, states could opt out of the Endangered Species Act. 

    Please contact your local representative, or any representative, to voice outrage and opposition to this decision

    — 4 months ago
    #obama  #house  #congress  #senate  #legislature  #america  #endangered species  #environment  #activism  #conservation  #action 
    mothernaturenetwork:

How much radiation from Fukushima will hit the West Coast?Scientists are using crowdsourcing to test the water along the Pacific Coast of North America, a project that could predict future risks.

    mothernaturenetwork:

    How much radiation from Fukushima will hit the West Coast?
    Scientists are using crowdsourcing to test the water along the Pacific Coast of North America, a project that could predict future risks.

    — 4 months ago with 76 notes
    #radiation  #pollution  #oceans  #water pollution  #innovation  #crowdsourcing  #research 

    Why land is the only thing worth working for, worth fighting for, worth dying for. Because it’s the only thing that lasts.

    (Source: yocalio, via modernscarlett)

    — 4 months ago with 2177 notes
    #land  #film  #nature  #quotes 
    Weekend Longread

    newyorker:

    image

    This weekend, read John McPhee’s 1987 piece, “Atchafalaya,” on the Herculean effort of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to control the flow of the Mississippi River, the fourth-longest river in the world: http://nyr.kr/19liopS

    (Source: newyorker.com)

    — 4 months ago with 37 notes
    #water  #engineering  #infrastructure  #newyorker  #to read  #longreads  #mississippi river  #army corps 
    "Climate change is a fact."
    The freakin’ President of the United Sates, finally, in the State of the Union (via jtotheizzoe) Thank you Obama
    — 5 months ago with 1967 notes
    #obama  #climate change  #environment  #politics  #sotu  #veritas 
    newsweek:

In LA, we know our region cycles between El Niño years and drought years, but we don’t have many bone-dry years. Right now is the driest the region has been in 163 years of formal record keeping. It’s also probably the driest it’s been in 500 years, and a sign of LA’s bleak future.
The word “drought” has lost all meaning to us though. Our utilities have done a brilliant job of keeping us comfortable, with plentiful running water, while every part of our region without plumbing wilts to a crisp. Talk to older Southern Californians and they’ll throw up finger quotes when they use the word “drought.”
They’ll blame politicians and environmentalists for droughts as though they control the weather. In Sacramento, there’s so much finger-pointing and leftover bitterness from the last drought, or the one before, or the one before that, that we forget to notice that our hills are on fire, bears are wandering into our cities, our air is toxic, and some of our unique flora and fauna face extinction in months, not years.
(via Los Angeles Is Finally Starting to Run Out of Water | VICE United States)

    newsweek:

    In LA, we know our region cycles between El Niño years and drought years, but we don’t have many bone-dry years. Right now is the driest the region has been in 163 years of formal record keeping. It’s also probably the driest it’s been in 500 years, and a sign of LA’s bleak future.

    The word “drought” has lost all meaning to us though. Our utilities have done a brilliant job of keeping us comfortable, with plentiful running water, while every part of our region without plumbing wilts to a crisp. Talk to older Southern Californians and they’ll throw up finger quotes when they use the word “drought.”

    They’ll blame politicians and environmentalists for droughts as though they control the weather. In Sacramento, there’s so much finger-pointing and leftover bitterness from the last drought, or the one before, or the one before that, that we forget to notice that our hills are on fire, bears are wandering into our cities, our air is toxic, and some of our unique flora and fauna face extinction in months, not years.

    (via Los Angeles Is Finally Starting to Run Out of Water | VICE United States)

    — 5 months ago with 179 notes
    #water  #security  #america  #environment  #@los angelos  #vice  #climate change 
    Without Winter Freezes, Mangroves Are Marching North, Scientists Say →

    “I don’t like to think about it, quite frankly,” he said. “It’s a little scary.”

    — 6 months ago with 1 note
    #climate change  #nytimes  #environment  #mangroves  #forests  #ecosystems  #oceans  #bad news  #2014 
    "Scientists predict that by the end of this century, the sea will have risen by almost a full meter on average."
    Secretary Kerry on climate change while in Vietnam, December 15, 2013 (via statedept)

    (Source: state.gov, via statedept)

    — 7 months ago with 97 notes
    #truth  #serious  #timetoact  #climate change  #energy  #america  #pollution 

    mothernaturenetwork:

    7 deserts that used to be verdant fields and forests
    A lot can happen in a few thousand years. Check out these global desert hot spots that used to be lush, green environments.             

    — 8 months ago with 81 notes
    #desertification  #climate change  #environment  #deserts