Climate Roundup: September

It’s Labor Day in the US–a day off of work for me, so I have time to organize the climate links that have piled up this summer.

Don’t forget: Labor and Climate Form a More Perfect Union (Yes! August 16, 2022)

Climate impacts

A pairing, to demonstrate how climate change impacts regions differently:

Extreme rainfall will be worse and more frequent than we thought, according to new studies (Grist, July 20, 2022)
The Western Drought Is Getting Weird (Gizmodo, July 15, 2022)

More extreme rainfall problems:

Jackson’s water crisis was triggered by floods and compounded by racism (Grist, August 30, 2022)

Pakistan warns “monster monsoon” season worsened by “climate catastrophe” could leave a third of the country underwater (August 29, 2022)

I have a friend who always says that “the cloud” is just somebody’s computer. This is a good reminder of the physical impacts of the things we think of as virtual.
It’s So Hot the Clouds Are Melting: Buildings hosting both Oracle and Google cloud servers in the UK failed to manage temperature spikes, causing shut downs during the ongoing Euro heat wave. (Gizmodo, July 20, 2022)

50 Years of Incredible, Terrifying Photos of a Changing Earth Taken From Space (Vice, July 22, 2022)

Political stuff

Biden calls climate change an ‘emergency,’ but stops short of declaring it (Grist, July 20, 2022)

Spoiler: stuck in the past, as usual. No Republican senator supported a climate plan – where is the party on the issue? (Guardian, July 22, 2022)

Update! The US finally has a law to tackle climate change (Vox, August 16, 2022)

Is US politics finally tilting in favor of the planet? (Boston Globe, August 1, 2022)

In local news: A Vast Refinery Site in Philadelphia Is Being Redeveloped and Called ‘The Bellwether District.’ But for Black Residents Nearby, Justice Awaits (Inside Climate News, July 4, 2022)

Plant stuff

Assisted migration: Can We Move Our Forests in Time to Save Them? (Mother Jones, November-December 2021)

I really like Burnt Toast, a newsletter that examines diet culture through thoughtful essays and interviews with experts in everything from nutrition to yoga to fashion. I know from my food writer days that the ways we eat and think about food touch nearly everything in our lives, so I don’t know why I was so surprised to read this piece about diet culture…. in gardening! I’m including it in this roundup because thinking seriously about native and invasive or opportunistic plants is a big part of my education and service as a watershed steward. (c.f. this previous post.) There’s not a simple answer. But I liked this sort of layperson approach to thinking through it…. it reminded me of the scene in Fleabag where the main character admits in confession that she just wants someone to tell her what to eat, what to wear, how to be good. We all want that. It’s why we get so hung up on the “right” foods and the “right” plants, sometimes ignoring that second piece (“the right tree for the right place,” as arborists say).
Where does your diet culture show up? (Burnt Toast, August 2, 2022)

Trash stuff

When you order those pants online in two sizes and return the ones that don’t fit, they probably end up in a landfill.
The Nasty Logistics of Returning Your Too-Small Pants (The Atlantic, October 7, 2021)

Same author, returning to the fashion logistics beat:
Seriously, What Are You Supposed to Do With Old Clothes? (The Atlantic, August 3, 2022)

You probably have “forever chemicals” in your body. Here’s what that means. (Vox, August 25, 2022)

Culture stuff

After the Mona Lisa cake attack earlier this year, I guess we haven’t seen the last of art-based climate protest. The art was not harmed, but I’m not a fan! Throw food at Joe Manchin’s house! Glue stuff to the Supreme Court steps! (I realize those are two very US-centric alternatives!)
Climate activists in Italy glue themselves to Botticelli painting (Guardian, July 22, 2022)

The Climate Message of Jordan Peele’s ‘Nope’ (Atmos, July 22, 2022)

What I like about both of these pieces is that they place celebrity conspicuous consumption into a larger cultural context. It’s not just about pointing fingers, but understanding public image and the enormous, usually invisible impacts of celebrity culture.
Why the Kylie Jenner private jet story matters (Heated, July 28, 2022)
Taylor Swift: A Relatable, Carbon-Emitting Queen (Gizmodo, August 2, 2022)

Some stuff you can do (or think about)

Reduce your consumption of beauty and hygiene products: The beauty industry is a climate disaster (Heated, September 2, 2022)

Reimagine your space: Climate fixes are all aimed at property owners. What about renters? (Vox, July 27, 2022)

Understand that your individual actions do matter even though change on a global scale is necessary: Why I’m Changing My Consumption—Even Though Climate Policy Is More Important Than Personal Choice (The New Republic, August 1, 2022)


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