This Sunday the National Geographic Channel’s excellent Cosmos science series explores climate change (Sunday June 1st at 7-30pm NZ/Aus on Sky channel 72). In the excerpt above, astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson explains the difference between climate and weather by talking a chocolate Labrador for a walk on the beach. The series has been attracting big audiences in the US, and the episodes I’ve caught have made compelling watching. It’s a reworking of Carl Sagan’s classic 1980 series, with wonderful graphics and great storytelling by Tyson. Highly recommended. And remember, watch the man, not the dog. (Hat tip to Chris Mooney at Mother Jones).
This is the trailer for Years Of Living Dangerously, a nine part documentary about the impacts of climate change by James Cameron and a bunch of Hollywood filmmakers, working with some of the USA’s top TV journalists and a team of top climate scientists. There are some big names involved: Harrison Ford, Matt Damon, Jessica Alba, and Arnold Schwarzenegger investigate various aspects of how climate impacts are already being felt. It’s being shown on Showtime (cable TV) in the US, and I imagine it will eventually turn up elsewhere around the world. For the time being you can watch the first episode in its entirety here:
This weekend’s episode of the new Keeping It Pure documentary series on Prime TV looks at how we’re addressing climate change issues in NZ. It screens at 8-30pm on Sunday and looks like required viewing for anyone with even a passing interest in the subject. Last weekend’s programme is being repeated on Saturday evening at 8-30 if you need to catch up, but set the recorder for future episodes — they won’t be getting repeats.
This guest post is by Meghan Hughes. She has been involved in a variety of environmental groups including Greenpeace, the Save Happy Valley campaign and the Green Party. She has recently finished a Masters in New Zealand Literature and lives in Wellington. She is married to Green Party MP Gareth Hughes, but is proud to claim all her opinions as totally her own.
“Until they personally run their own lives without fossil fuels I’m not prepared to consider their position about not extracting fossil fuels.” Dunedin city councillor, former ACT MP Hilary Calvert.
Hypocrisy (n): the practice of claiming to have higher standards or more laudable opinions or beliefs than is the case. Oxford English Dictionary.
Driving a car to an oil-free protest makes you a hypocrite, right? Wrong: I support an oil-free future in the long term. I agree with divesting from oil exploration in the short term. Ultimately, I believe in moving from a fossil-dependent economy toward a sustainable and more environmentally-responsible economy. What underpins my stance is the reality of man-made climate change and the need for man-made societal change. However, there are people out there who would want me to believe that unless I am able to live my life, run my household, and raise my kids without utilising any products of our oil-dependent society, I have no right to demand anything different. They say to do so would mean that I am a hypocrite. Right?
Wrong. Most of the people making this kind of absurd allegation really don’t care about a genuine response. It is a tactic to shut you down. Unsurprisingly, many of these same people refuse to acknowledge that we are changing our climate, so reject also the responsibly we share in doing something about it. So this isn’t for them, this is for you. This is to tell you that it is ok to drive your car to an oil-free protest.
Following the release of a new report on climate change impacts in and around New Zealand by the prime minister’s chief science advisor last week, in my Daily Blog post today I take a look at the government’s reaction. Is it really true that Tim Groser didn’t bother reading the report before spinning out a vapid response? The evidence suggests he certainly didn’t understand what the report was saying, even if he did glance at its content… Comments over there please.