May 2017: Climate change troubles

A lot of things have happened since the 2015 climate change summit in Paris.

There's none so blind as those that will not see and none so deaf as those that will not hear

This seems to be the approach to climate change of the new American president, Donald Trump and his government. They don't believe that climate change is happening and that it is caused by the pollution people create when they burn fossil fuels like coal and oil. This is the message that the vast majority of scientists from all around the world want governments to take seriously as more and more evidence pours in. Science says quite clearly that the world is getting hotter, faster than it has done for well over 50 million years. Because of the overwhelming scientific evidence that global warming is occurring and is caused by human pollution of the atmosphere, almost all countries in the world — including the USA — agreed at an important summit in Paris 2015 to do something to slash pollution from burning fossil fuel. At last, it 'Let's ignore the science and pretend it's not happening!'seemed people were coming to their senses and were ready to do something serious to combat global warming. Things were looking good until the election of Donald Trump who, true to his campaign promises, has set about reversing all America's plans to reduce pollution. This would not matter so much if America was a small country. But it isn't. It's a huge country which uses more fossil fuel than any other except China. But China is doing something about global warming. It is now the biggest producer of renewable energy technologies in the world and is actively moving away from fossil fuels. So while America goes back to polluting fossil fuels, ignoring the advice of its own scientists , China and many other countries are forging ahead to a world powered by renewable energy. There is no alternative if today's 6.5 billion humans are to survive and prosper. Mr Trump and his administration are going to leave a terrible mess for today's kids to cope with because they chose to look away.

Generally accepted to be around 97 out of every hundred scientists.
Scientists call this the Palaeocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM), which occurred around 56 million years ago. For a time, the planet was even hotter than it is now. But there was one big difference: the heating that is going on now is much faster than it has been in the past, even in the PETM. Humans are pushing the planet into unknown territory.
Shooting the messenger
Climate scientists in the United States are having a hard time under the new administration. Many are losing their jobs; others prevented from making known work they have done supporting the overwhelming evidence for global warming. Many people see the politicians in charge as anti-science. As a result, there have already been demonstrations and marches all around the world in support of science and, in particular, climate scientists.

 

Earth Day NetworkToday’s students are tomorrow’s leaders.
So please join the Earth Day Network and download the 2017 Climate Education Week Toolkit


Whale Image: Isaac Kohane You can help in this project to understand whales

Spoon-billed sandpiper. Image: kenSaving Spoonie!

The tiny spoon-billed sandpiper is critically endangered because of what people are doing along its migration route between Russia, via China to Bangladesh. But 500 children from schools along the little birds' flyway got together and did something rather wonderful to help 'spoonie'. Click the bird image to find out more..

 

Paraguay's famous slum orchestra. Image: US Embassy in Paraguay
The Recycled Orchestra

These amazing kids make music from trash. They live in a slum in Paraguay (South America) next to a huge garbage dump, the source of the trash they use to make musical instruments. As they learn to play their instruments, they join their own orchestra. They are so good that they now give concerts in many different countries. Click here for video So could you make music from trash?