Much has been made of the philanthropic pursuits of Bill Gates and Warren Buffett in the last few years, and the extent of their financial muscle only highlights the disparity between the ‘haves and have-nots.’ The world is mostly living through intensive economic turmoil right now, but this belies the huge amount of money that was generated in many corporate circles in the last decade or so. Essentially, the people that have money, have A LOT of it.
Imagine all of the greenhouse gases that are destroying the atmosphere being captured and stored underground, before they reach the skies. It’s plausible and beginning to happen – moving from the research level to potentially revolutionizing a multitude of industries, according to a recent UK report. If governments can get behind the new technological advancements taking place with CCS (and that, of course, means large financial allocations), climate change may be slowed, or potentially quelled. Read the rest of this entry →
It’s easy to be pessimistic about the big oil companies, who, like banks are the unspoken scourge of the populace. And also like banks, sadly we all need their services – an unhealthy conundrum best left alone, it seems most people believe. That is, until something goes terribly wrong, like with the recent Deepwater Horizon disaster; images of oil-cloaked sea birds and fiery geysers inspire collective revulsion for our oil dependent ways – and more directed towards the companies that provide it. But, we still need to drive our cars, so after the public flogging of BP, and recently Chevron, what really has changed with deepwater drilling? Read the rest of this entry →
It’s easy to take the enormous volume of information we’re all now privy to, for granted. A transformative global information network exists online – but somewhere, someone is collating, editing and e-publishing the ‘facts,’ attempting to minimize the conjecture. Wikipedia is a tremendous public service resource – seemingly getting stronger everyday – and it still seems incredible that we have jettisoned the library in favour of the iPad. Oh how the mind boggles!
What started as an energy-saving tactic at the behest of the World Wildlife Fund in Sydney, Australia in 2007 to highlight the urgency of climate change, has spread across the globe to hundreds of cities and millions of people. Earth Hour is a simple, and some cynics would argue, silly, collective measure to freeze our energy use for yes, an hour. But, behind the gimmick is something more valuable: a shared expression of empowerment and the ability of humans to change their circumstances – if only for an hour. This is finally good news.
As we beckon ever more connectivity in our lives, its (and our) impact on the planet may prove beneficial. Employee rights, Fairtrade concerns and legitimate sourcing of raw material make for a new era of business and political motivations – and accountability. As with the latest press on China’s Foxconn manufacturing and employee relations, so to it is with the volatile and sensitive area of illegal logging and deforestation. Businesses and governments are being forced to acknowledge the ‘paper trail’ of consequences that occur from one mishap to another. For example, the devastating flooding at Christmas in the Philippinesis, of course, weather related, but also connected to deforestation.