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Daily blogs from the frontlines of the Greenpeace planet down under. 

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  • Historic Human Overshoot

    Blogpost by Rex Weyler - January 26, 2012 at 12:39

    In nature, any successful species can overshoot a habitat, consuming resources faster than Earth’s ecosystems can replenish them. On Earth today, indicators such as species extinctions, soil loss, and global warming – tell us that humans have reached this state of overshoot on a global scale. In seeking solutions, we may benefit from some historical perspective. 

    University of British Columbia professor Dr. William Rees and his colleague Mathis Wackernagel originated the “ecological footprint” analysis, now universally used to measure personal, family, or regional ecological impact. Rees estimates that humans now use about fifty percent more resources in a year than Earth can replenish. In 2010, Rees wrote “The Human Nature of Unsustainability” for the Post Carbon Reader, expl... Read more >

  • Enthusiasm for oil requires cognitive shut-down

    Blogpost by Steve Abel - January 24, 2012 at 12:20

    Recently some commentators have revealed something about the way their brain functions in singing the praises of new fossil fuels.

    We shouldn’t be surprised that oil companies are excited about oil, though the Sunday Star Times seems to think it warrants front page coverage.  I wonder if "tennis players say tennis is great!” would make similar headlines? 

    Lately the head of the Government’s “green taskforce” Phil O’Reilly managed to write an article all about how fab oil, gas, coal and Norway are and not mention even once a little problem called climate change.  Labour’s Shane Jones seems to be singing from a similarly oily song-sheet as the National Government when he says his iwi cousins on the East Cape are naïve for opposing deep sea oil drilling in their ancestral waters. Ngati Poro... Read more >

  • Conversations with Greenlanders (and non-conversations with oil companies)

    Blogpost by Jon Burgwald - January 23, 2012 at 7:59

    The fjord next to the town Sisimiut on the Greenlandic west coast.I’ve passed north of the polar circle on our trip visiting the west coast of Greenland. The temperature has dropped to minus 15 Celsius; snow is mounting outside my window and in the beautiful harbour city Sisimiut, the fjord is filled with ice. At night time, the Northern Lights are dancing in the sky to the distant howling from the town’s sledge dogs. This wolf-like dog is only allowed north of the Arctic Circle. In a few days, I will be debating oil drilling at the local college – a college that specifically focuses on minerals and petroleum.
     
    We have spent the last couple of days in Greenland’s capital Nuuk, a visit that proved quite interesting. I’ve talked to 200 students about the dangers of oil drillings, but also on how Greenland in general can ensure a sustainable d... Read more >

  • Obama stands up to Big Oil and polluter politicians

    Blogpost by Phil Radford and Daryl Hannah - January 20, 2012 at 9:04

    Alberta Tar Sands

    Yesterday, President Obama stood up to Big Oil and its puppets in the US Congress, denying a permit for the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. This is encouraging news for the communities whose air and water would have been directly threatened by this pipeline, from Canada to Nebraska to the Gulf Coast. And it's an important piece of the struggle to avert a runaway climate catastrophe. But since the Keystone XL has become a pitched political battle, this announcement is also an encouraging affirmation of the power of people, creative protest, and grassroots organizing in the face of the entrenched power and big bucks of the oil industry.

    Earlier this month, American Petroleum Institute CEO Jack Gerard, the oil industry's top lobbyist, directly threatened President Obama with "huge p...

    Read more >
  • People power pushes back on Internet censorship

    Blogpost by Brian - Greenpeace International - January 20, 2012 at 8:56

    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU everyone who took action yesterday, and took a historic stand against Internet censorship. We're proud to have stood shoulder to shoulder with some of the world's biggest websites, and all of you, in opposing SOPA and PIPA -- the two pieces of legislation in the US designed to prevent copyright piracy on the web, but which would have granted corporations unprecedented powers to limit free expression.

    It was an amazing day; PIPA, which had looked certain to become law, has now lost a quarter of its sponsors. At least 18 senators heard the roar of opposition and reversed their support for the bill in the course of the day.

    SOPA blackout pages

    25 Greenpeace websites worldwide went dark in solidarity with activism from Google, Wikipedia, Craigslist, Wired, Reddit, Boing B... Read more >

  • “For God’s sake look after our people”

    Blogpost by Joss Garman, Greenpeace UK - January 18, 2012 at 9:00

    Staring out at the bright, open, broken plains of Arctic sea ice back in September, more than once I was struck by the thought of the early explorers who first trekked across similar icescapes at both of the frozen ends of the planet. My first time stepping down onto the floating Arctic ice was exciting enough; hard to comprehend what it was like for those  who were pushing the boundaries of where humans had previously explored.

    But beautiful as it may be, seemingly endless expanses of ice and water are also seriously inhospitable - underlined in those famous words of the British exploring legend Captain Robert Falcon Scott.

    "Had we lived I should have had a tale to tell of the hardihood, endurance and courage of my companions which would have stirred the heart of every Englishman.... Read more >

  • We're sorry, you're not allowed to read this

    Blogpost by Kumi Naidoo - January 18, 2012 at 8:41

    In the history book of bad ideas, the concept of giving corporations the right to censor the Internet has to rank among the worst ever.

    But that's what the impact of two bills recently introduced in the US Congress would be if they, or anything like them, were enacted into law, and it's causing a righteous ruckus among free speech activists around the world.

    In solidarity with major sites like Wikipedia, Boing Boing, and Reddit, the Greenpeace International website will be dark for 12 hours on the 18th of January to protest these two bills specifically, and the idea of empowering internet censorship in general.

    If you don’t know what SOPA and PIPA are, you should look them up. While touted as  efforts to curtail film and music piracy, they have the potential to allow corporations ... Read more >

  • And the award for threatening planet Earth goes to...

    Blogpost by Jamie - Greenpeace UK - January 17, 2012 at 8:21

    Another bit of fun from the Brussels motor show today: an award presented by Lord Vader himself for jeopordising the future of our planet.

    Together with a squad of stormtroopers, Darth Vader interrupted a speech given by Ivan Hodac, general secretary of the car industry lobbying body Acea. The dark lord presented Hodac with a gong for his achievements in blocking propressive car efficiency legislation in Europe.

    Listen to Darth Vader's speech below and tremble with fear. Read more >

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