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Climate Change & Conservation eNews

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TED By USU

TED Talk: Redefining climate change denial

With the need to connect with people around climate solutions, and to diversify the conservation sector's approach to climate action, this TED Talk might be something you want to share.

By recognizing the passive forms of climate change denial in our everyday lives, we enable ourselves to move past them and begin working towards climate solutions each day. Patrick Belmont has some very interesting observations about different kinds of deniers.

Belmont is a dad and river scientist with a rapidly shrinking carbon footprint. He talks about climate change in real terms, and real impacts, including ecosystems, national security, and human suffering. When you listen, you will hear about equity, planting trees, and the urgency of time, and what we can do about it.

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Agrivoltaics

Agrivoltaics works better with leafy greens, root crops

People want clean energy. Businesses want clean energy. Yet, where is it going to go? And how can it enhance farming and ranching, and not detract from it? Solar can enhance agricultural viability—but you need to spread the word and demand that your state, and the federal government, provide the incentives needed. It's a smart policy decision given the shocking loss of farms and ranches already underway.

[Solar] projects linked to agriculture have thus far shown the highest potential when combined with leafy greens such as lettuce and spinach, as well as with root crops such as potatoes, radishes, beets, and carrots. This is one of the conclusions of recent research developed on agrivoltaics by U.S. scientist Chad Higgins from the Department of Biological and Ecological Engineering at Oregon State University…

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Walk Boulevard Trees
Pixabay

Study: Review of the Available Literature and Data on the Runoff and Pollutant Removal Capabilities of Urban Trees

This article might be of interest if would like to learn more about the specific benefits of urban forests.

This is a dense, but potentially useful scientific article on the runoff and pollutant removal capabilities of urban trees.

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Boulevard Trees
Unsplash

Air quality effects of urban trees and parks

There's some interesting research produced by the National Recreation and Park Association. You might find it helpful for more background information on the importance of urban forests.

Trees—and urban trees in particular—provide enormous benefits. For starters, they’re responsible for producing oxygen and removing CO2 and other pollutants from the air. Urban forests in the U.S. remove an estimated 75,000 tons of air pollution per year. They reduce the impact of falling rain and encourage that water to soak into the ground, reducing flooding and erosion as well as preventing pollution from entering waterways…

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Planting Trees
Getty Images

Using urban forestry to fight for environmental justice

Land conservation around climate work needs to include urban areas, villages, and those places that often aren't seen as "valuable" for conservation efforts. If your local conservation group doesn't conserve land in these areas, it might be time to at least elevate the need by spreading the word and supporting partnerships that do.

Trees—and urban trees in particular—provide enormous benefits. For starters, they’re responsible for producing oxygen and removing CO2 and other pollutants from the air. Urban forests in the U.S. remove an estimated 75,000 tons of air pollution per year. They reduce the impact of falling rain and encourage that water to soak into the ground, reducing flooding and erosion as well as preventing pollution from entering waterways

The U.S. Forest Service estimates that trees reduce the energy consumption needed to cool homes in the U.S. by more than seven percent…

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Sunbeam Through Mossy Forest
Unsplash

A top U.S. seller of carbon offsets starts investigating its own projects

Are your local land trust, or state conservation groups, considering carbon offsets? Understanding both the reality and the perceptions about offsets—and how to communicate the reality—is going to be central to success.

Following concerns that it is facilitating the sale of meaningless carbon credits to corporate clients, the Nature Conservancy says it’s conducting an internal review of its portfolio of carbon-offset projects. The nonprofit owns or has helped develop more than 20 such projects on forested lands mostly in the U.S., which generate credits that are purchased by such companies as JPMorgan Chase & Co., BlackRock Inc., and Walt Disney Co., which use them to claim large reductions in their own publicly reported emissions…

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Grain Strorage
AP Photo/Carlos Osorio

New problems arise for crop storage as planet gets warmer

Helping people understand the impacts of climate change on agriculture is important if we are going to prioritize solutions, including soil health, agricultural viability, and renewable energy that are compatible. When we think about farm and ranchland viability, climate change is going to be an increased stressor.

“There’s a big disconnect in our minds about the chain of events between the field and the grocery store and onto our plate,” [plant physiology scientist Courtney Leisner at Auburn University] said. “Just a few degrees can make all the difference in whether it’s economical to store the fruits and vegetables that we expect to have on our dinner table 365 days a year.”

Aside from potentially higher prices, climate change may worsen food shortages caused by spoilage. About 14% of food produced globally—and 20% of fruits and vegetables—goes bad between harvest and retail, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. Wasted food is a significant source of greenhouse gases…

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Dusk Conservation
Unsplash

Six ways to stay balanced during the climate crisis

Facing reality is critical. Inspiring change locally, statewide, and beyond is a priority. But it can be overwhelming and for many, the tendency is to keep doing what we are doing. Yet that's not going to work. Perhaps you can share this article with those you know...

Know anyone stressed out about a warming planet? A surgeon and a psychotherapist offer advice on how to grow more resilient.

Research suggests that although there may be a genetic component, resilience is a function of a potpourri of factors, not a must-have gene, trait, or cultural determinant. Resilience also appears to cut right through social classifications of culture, race, class, gender identity, religion, and political affiliation. This knowledge that resilience is widely distributed is encouraging, as is the fact that it can be developed and nurtured…

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Bluebird
Unsplash

The future of birds in our national parks

Audubon scientists have teamed up with colleagues from the National Park Service to look at how the accelerating change in climate will affect the birdlife in 274 National Park Service properties. Detailed reports for every park list birds for which the climatic conditions will be getting better or worse or staying the same. The reports also predict some species that might disappear from each park and others that could move in.

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Stretching Cormorant
Rosemary Gillan/Audubon Photography Awards

Climate change could cause shifts in bird ranges that seem unbelievable today

All over the country evidence is mounting that climate change is impacting the health and survival of birds. Yet too often conservationists get caught up in the anti-wind, and anti-solar, arguments because they can cause bird injury or death. While that is true, it is nothing like what climate change is doing. We have to help people understand what's at stake.

Audubon scientists have teamed up with colleagues from the National Park Service to look at how the accelerating change in climate will affect the birdlife in 274 National Park Service properties. Detailed reports for every park list birds for which the climatic conditions will be getting better or worse or staying the same. The reports also predict some species that might disappear from each park and others that could move in.

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