Painting humanity as the architects of climate destruction is a cheap shot. What will you be doing in 10 years? Forget any notion of Caribbean cruises. You will, like the rest of us, be grubbing round the barren wasteland that is Scotland, seeking some nourishing insect to feed your parched, hollow-eyed children, while fending off desperate neighbours whose home have been swallowed by the expanding, polluted oceans. Welcome to Scotland 2030. It’s not my vision, but that of Francesca Osowska, the head of Scottish Natural Heritage, an agency more usually associated with rescuing bats, repairing footpaths and conserving beavers. Osowska told the Royal Society of Edinburgh last week: “Imagine an apocalypse: polluted waters; drained and eroding peatlands; coastal towns and villages deserted in the wake of rising sea level and coastal erosion; massive areas of forestry afflicted by disease; a dearth of people in rural areas; and no birdsong.” It rather makes you wonder why her agency is spending roughly £50m a year employing 700 souls – not to mention £1m on outside consultants – promoting outdoor learning in deprived areas, developing cycle routes, and creating the Scottish biodiversity route map. Wouldn’t it be better to build us all bunkers?
Times 2nd June 2019 read more »
The US has recently experienced one of its worst tornado outbreaks of the past decade, with more than 500 reported over 30 days. The number so far this year is also more than 200 above average. This has raised the question of what role, if any, climate change may have played in this unusually intensive period of tornadoes. While some have suggested that climate change is driving the above-average numbers, the scientific community has pushed back on these claims. Scientists have relatively low confidence in detecting a link between tornado activity and climate change. They cannot exclude the possibility of a link; rather, the science is so uncertain that they simply do not know at this point.
Carbon Brief 31st May 2019 read more »