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Seeds of good anthropocenes | identifying socially-ecological bright spots that could grow & connect to produce a better anthropocene. Carbon Farming Gets A Nod At Paris Climate Conference. Las Cañadas is an ecological cooperative in Veracruz, Mexico that's working to sequester carbon and mitigate climate change while producing food, materials, chemicals and energy. Courtesy of Ricardo Romero/Chelsea Green Publishing hide caption toggle caption Courtesy of Ricardo Romero/Chelsea Green Publishing Las Cañadas is an ecological cooperative in Veracruz, Mexico that's working to sequester carbon and mitigate climate change while producing food, materials, chemicals and energy.

Courtesy of Ricardo Romero/Chelsea Green Publishing This week, world leaders are hashing out a binding agreement in Paris at the 2015 U.N. "This is a game changer because soil carbon is now central to how the world manages climate change. Leu is referring to the United Nations Lima-Paris Action Agenda, a sort of side deal aimed at "robust global action towards low carbon and resilient societies. " Currently, the Earth's atmosphere contains about 400 parts per million of carbon dioxide. YouTube. Rain Barrels 101 - Save Our Water. Rainwater Harvesting…Save Water for Your Yard For Californians looking to save water around their yards, rain barrels (or cisterns) can be good options. Rain barrels are containers that divert and collect water that otherwise would flow off a roof, through gutters and downspouts and become runoff.

The rainwater captured in rain barrels is typically used for outdoor irrigation purposes. Rain barrels come in a wide variety of sizes, materials, designs and colors. The most common rain barrels for residential use are 55 to 90 gallons, but some can be much larger. Prices can very quite a bit as well – often ranging from about $50 for DIY (do-it-yourself) kits and up to several hundred dollars for ready-made rain barrels. In addition to providing water for use during dry times, rain barrels have other benefits: For helpful information on California-friendly landscaping, visit Save Our Water’s Landscaping 101 page.

Guest Blog: The Romance of Rain Barrels Resources For Californians. Sustainable Development Solutions Network. Embracing Dry Land: Water-Smart Urban Design and Drought in the American West | JSTOR Daily. The great American cities of the desert Southwest were never built on sand. They were built on water. Los Angeles, Phoenix, Las Vegas, and lesser cities such as Tucson have all floated upward over the last century on an illusion that water in the largely arid region could be as plentiful and cheap as it was in the much wetter East. In one of the great feats of human engineering, huge dams, massive reservoirs, hundreds of miles of canals, and aqueducts have been constructed to sustain that illusion.

But today, in the midst of a historic drought, with a still-growing population draining the region’s rivers and aquifers, the foundation of the Western dream is evaporating. A day environmentalists have long warned was coming seems to have arrived: a reckoning for the West’s profligate, crop-irrigating, lawn-watering, swimming-pool-filling, golf-course-building ways. But looming disasters have at least one advantage. They upset established thinking. Modern technology also will be essential. Biodiversity for a Livable Climate | Restoring Ecosystems to Reverse Global Warming. Restoring Ecosystems to Reverse Global Warming Conference at Tufts University, Medford, Massachusetts November 21-23, 2014, details here. Biodiversity for a Livable Climate brings you information about decades of scientific research and the practical experience of land managers around the world.

We work to remedy the information gap in mainstream climate advocacy which tells us that virtually the only practical effective action we can take is to reduce fossil fuel emissions. There is another way. One foundational approach is Holistic Management as applied to billions of acres of grasslands worldwide, which soils have the potential to store enough carbon to reduce atmospheric carbon concentrations significantly. In addition, we are fully supportive of reforestation, ocean regeneration and other restorative endeavors, all of which return essential health, climate stability and diversity to the biosphere. The American Dust Bowl, 1930s. Contact: info (at) Become a Certified CA Naturalist - California Naturalist.

Map Data Map data ©2014 Google, INEGI Locations American River Natural History Association Hopland Research & Extension Center Jepson Herbarium at UC Berkeley Occidental Arts & Ecology Center Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History Pasadena City College Pepperwood Preserve/Santa Rosa Junior College Sagehen Creek Field Station Santa Ana Watershed Association Santa Barbara Botanic Garden Sierra Streams Institute SPAWN Marin County Tejon Ranch Conservancy UC Santa Cruz Arboretum Map Satellite The UC California Naturalist program collaborates with local partner organizations to deliver the UC California Naturalist certification course in a community near you.

Click on the menu to the left or the calendar to the right to view courses open for enrollment and return to see our list of partnering organizations grow! Interested in becoming a partnering organization? About ioby | ioby. "We might not be able to change the world, but we can at least do something on the block. " –Erin Barnes ioby is a crowd-resourcing platform for citizen-led neighbor-funded projects. Our name is derived from the opposite of NIMBY. Our mission is to strengthen neighborhoods by supporting the leaders in them who want to make positive change, engaging their neighbors, one block at a time. Crowd-resourcing combines the concepts of crowd-funding (the ability to pool small donations made online to a specific cause or project) and resource organizing (a core tenet of community organizing that considers activists and advocates the best supporters to ensure success of a cause or project). "Real change is hard.

Ioby connects change with resources. Small steps have big impact. Start a project or pick a project. Labor of Love: How My WV Small Town Launched a Game-Changing New Model to Go Solar. This week, my small town in West Virginia cut the ribbon on a solar project that isn't just the largest crowd-funded solar project in the state, but also launches a new model making it possible for any WV community organization to go solar. On a perfect sunny day, 100 elementary school students and dozens of community members joined my husband, Than Hitt, and my daughter Hazel, who cut the ribbon for a 60-panel solar system at the historic Shepherdstown Presbyterian Church. It was an unforgettable day that crystalized all our hopes for the future of West Virginia, and exemplified the power of regular people to change the world.

The genius of this project was that the church went solar for just $1, thanks to over 100 community members who contributed - but they donated their water heaters, not their dollars. The church is going to generate nearly half of its electricity from the sun, reducing pollution, saving money, and living out the congregation's commitment to caring for the Earth. Energy Storage and Problem Solving. Pick up a research paper on battery technology, fuel cells, energy storage technologies or any of the advanced materials science used in these fields, and you will likely find somewhere in the introductory paragraphs a throwaway line about its application to the storage of renewable energy. Energy storage makes sense for enabling a transition away from fossil fuels to more intermittent sources like wind and solar, and the storage problem presents a meaningful challenge for chemists and materials scientists… Or does it?

Guest Post by John Morgan. John is Chief Scientist at a Sydney startup developing smart grid and grid scale energy storage technologies. He is Adjunct Professor in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at RMIT, holds a PhD in Physical Chemistry, and is an experienced industrial R&D leader. You can follow John on twitter at @JohnDPMorgan. First published in Chemistry in Australia. Adding storage greatly reduces the EROEI (the “buffered” values in the figure). Coalition for a Sustainable Delta | Solving the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Crisis.

Applying Behavioral Strategies to Energy Decisions and Behaviors - American Academy of Arts & Sciences. Pace Law School White Plains, New York June 18 - 19, 2014 Welcome and Opening Remarks Marsha Walton, Senior Project Manager, Buildings R&D and Behavior Research, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority Maxine L. Savitz, Vice President, National Academy of Engineering; General Manager, Honeywell, Inc., retired; Co-chair, Alternative Energy Future project, American Academy of Arts and Sciences Richard Ottinger, Founder, Pace Energy and Climate Center; Dean Emeritus, Pace University Law School; former Congressman (D-NY) Keynote Talks Watch the Video Karen Ehrhardt-Martinez, Principal, Human Dimensions Research: The Efficiency Gap and Potential of Behavioral Strategies - Slides Susan Mazur-Stommen, Director, Behavior and Human Dimensions Program, American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy: Examples of Behavioral Utility Programs - Slides Panel Discussion: Designing and Evaluating Behavioral Projects Watch the Video Preliminary Results from New Research Programs - Round 1.

Terms of engagement. In 2002 the Republican pollster Frank Luntz had some advice for conservative candidates seeking to address what was quickly becoming a hot-button topic. “It’s time for us to start talking about ‘climate change’ instead of global warming,” he wrote in a memo. “‘Climate change’ is less frightening.” More than a decade later, myriad studies have made it more than obvious that human activities are altering the Earth’s climate and disrupting weather patterns, the production of crops, and human health—not in the distant future, but today.

The Obama administration has taken some steps in recent months to address the issue. But the American polity as a whole is hardly more serious about addressing this issue than it was during President George W. Bush’s first term. There are a lot of reasons for this inaction, from the generally abstract nature of the issue to the enormous political and economic might brought to bear against significant action. Where there's a Wende, there's a way. How Conservation and Groundwater Management Can Gird California for a Drier Era. Photo It’s way past time for California to come to grips with the possibility that its extraordinary water woes are the new normal — and essentially the return of the old normal given the state’s climate history, in which drought has been the rule and the verdant 20th century the exception. In the weekly update to the U.S. Drought Monitor site yesterday, nearly 80 percent of the state was in extreme or exceptional drought conditions.

It could well be that atmospheric circulation will shift and the drought, instead of deepening, will abate. (The state can sometimes get far too wet.) Hoping for the best works fine if it’s combined with planning for the worst. Can economic vitality be sustained if that’s the case? California could be saving up to 14 million acre-feet of untapped water – providing more than the amount of water used in all of California’s cities in one year – with an aggressive statewide effort to use water-saving practices, reuse water, and capture lost stormwater…. Water in the West | A Joint Program of the Woods Institute for the Environment and the Bill Lane Center for the American West at Stanford University. Now What? Scientists Call for a Better Way to Invest in the Future of Agriculture. Iowa State University, April 2005. I stood at the front of the classroom, a veteran of 25 years of teaching at one of the nation’s front-line agricultural institutions, and I was trying hard not to show my disbelief.

The young man who had just spoken was a superstar student and, like most agriculture students in Iowa, came from a farm. He’d just heard a team of fellow students report on the grass-fed beef system of the Argentine pampas, and his first reaction was to ask: “Cattle can really eat grass?” I had to simultaneously process how to handle the educational situation while absorbing the fact that this college senior was weeks from graduating with a degree in agronomy and our curriculum had clearly failed him. Researchers examine fields at the long-term Marsden Farm experiment at Iowa State University. Photo: Laura Miller, Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture Industrial Agriculture—A System Gone Awry And this last has led to an agricultural crisis that cannot be overstated. OUR LAND: A Symposium on Farmland Access in the 21st Century | Agrarian Trust. In the next two decades 400 million acres of U.S. farmland will change hands. Will that land be consolidated into larger holdings and treated as a commodity or investment asset?

Or will it prove the foundation for a new business, a next-generation farmer, a passionate entrepreneur? Join us for a weekend program to tackle the historical context, long-range implications and economic impact, and stewardship potential of the transition ahead. Please note: Before the Symposium in April, you may be interested in our reading list of related materials. April 26th, 6 PM Wheeler Hall, UC Berkeley campus David vs. Land Grab: Anuradha Mittal, Oakland Institute Revitalizing Land and Community through Urban Agriculture: Gayle McLaughlin, Mayor of Richmond, CA Doria Robinson, Urban Tilth With introductions by Severine v T Fleming, Agrarian Trust April 27th, 9:30 AM-5 PM The David Brower Center, Berkeley CA full speaker bios available here The Future of Family Farming Joel Salatin, Polyface Farm, Virginia.

Showtime Series Aims to Engage Sleepy Public on Global Warming With Celebrity Guides. ShowtimeIn the first episode of “Years of Living Dangerously,” the actor Don Cheadle talks with Katharine Hayhoe, a climate scientist, and her husband, Drew Farley, a preacher. Early in 2011, two longtime 60 Minutes producers, David Gelber and Joel Bach, met with me to describe their ambitious plan to create a television series on global warming that, they hoped, would break through the enduring public apathy and haze of disinformation surrounding the subject. I wished them luck, while warning that the scale and complexity of the problem would make it hard to be both engaging and accurate. The first of nine episodes of the resulting series, “Years of Living Dangerously,” will run on Showtime Sunday night but can be seen on YouTube now (noted via Joe Romm, who is one of two chief science advisers on the production, the other being Heidi Cullen): But those films were overtly polemical.

It’s very hard to quantify. Drew Farley: A lot of my political opinions are Republican. The Earth Institute - Columbia University. Stockbridge Green, Architects. About the OECD. Our mission The mission of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) is to promote policies that will improve the economic and social well-being of people around the world.The OECD provides a forum in which governments can work together to share experiences and seek solutions to common problems. We work with governments to understand what drives economic, social and environmental change. We measure productivity and global flows of trade and investment. We analyse and compare data to predict future trends. We set international standards on a wide range of things, from agriculture and tax to the safety of chemicals.We also look at issues that directly affect everyone’s daily life, like how much people pay in taxes and social security, and how much leisure time they can take.

Drawing on facts and real-life experience, we recommend policies designed to improve the quality of people's lives. A New Paradigm Will Help Navigate the Anthropocene : Collide-a-Scape. Tree-Nation » Plant trees for a better planet! Natural Resources and the Environment - Dot Earth Blog -