With the new year in sight, we thought it is good to go back over the course of the year and look at all the climate stories that happened. A lot has happened over the last year with 2022 beating several records. it has provisionally been the -on average- hottest year to date and as well as a decade of increasingly bad weather
More episodes from "Going Green"
Is the Future of Lorries, Electric?
32:05In this riveting episode of our podcast, we’re shifting gears and focusing our headlights on a transformative trend in the automotive world that’s mostly flown under the public radar. This is about the electrification of large vehicles, such as lorries (trucks), buses, and other heavy-duty vehicles.Often overlooked in the electric vehicle (EV) discourse are these formidable giants of transportation. They're quietly undergoing a massive, yet mostly unseen, revolution - trading in diesel for electric power. We'll delve into the innovations driving this shift and the companies leading the charge.We kick off with a journey into the world of electric lorries, exploring the tech-savvy start-ups and established auto behemoths who are reimagining these freight powerhouses. Learn how they're addressing the unique challenges that come with electrifying such substantial vehicles, from battery technology to charging infrastructure.Next, we'll board the electric bus revolution. Find out how cities across the globe are implementing these greener options into their public transport fleets, reducing their carbon footprints and improving urban air quality. We'll spotlight the key players, strategies, and benefits of this transformation.Also, we'll give you an insight into the electrification of other large vehicles like agricultural machinery and construction equipment. Discover how these silent workhorses are reshaping industries known for their high environmental impact, contributing to a more sustainable future.In addition, we will discuss the implications of this shift for the global energy landscape and climate change targets, as well as the economic and policy factors driving or impeding this revolution.So buckle up and join us on this exciting journey into the unseen world of electric large vehicles, as we reveal the quiet yet crucial transformation taking place on our highways, in our cities, and on our worksites. It's more than just a trend—it's a revolution.#electricvehicle #future #evrevolution
UN’s New Roadmap About Recycling should be adopted GLOBALLY
30:15In this episode, Paul and I explore the ambitious new action plan unveiled by the United Nations Environment Program aimed at reducing plastic waste by a whopping 80% by the year 2040. As doubts rise about the effectiveness of recycling, given the presence of approximately 13,000 potentially toxic chemicals in plastics, it's clear that recycling alone is not the solution. Join us as we delve into the complex and challenging steps outlined by the UN agency to significantly curb our plastic pollution problem.
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The Thermo-haline is in Decline 😱
32:00The thermohaline circulation, also known as the "global ocean conveyor belt," is a system of ocean currents that transport heat, salt, and nutrients around the world. It plays a crucial role in regulating the Earth's climate by redistributing heat and maintaining the temperature balance between the tropics and the polar regions.The Beaufort Gyre, a major Arctic Ocean current, has been storing vast amounts of ice and cold freshwater due to increased Arctic sea ice melt. If this gyre were to release its stored freshwater into the Atlantic Ocean, it could have substantial impacts on the thermohaline circulation and, consequently, on the climate of northern Europe.Here are some potential impacts:Cooling Effect: The most immediate effect would likely be a significant cooling of northern Europe. The thermohaline circulation brings warm surface water from the tropics to the North Atlantic, which moderates the climate of northern Europe. A large influx of cold freshwater from the Beaufort Gyre could disrupt this heat transport, leading to cooler temperatures.Weather Patterns: The change in ocean temperatures could also influence atmospheric pressure systems, potentially altering prevailing wind patterns and storm tracks. This could lead to changes in weather patterns, with the potential for increased storminess or precipitation in some areas.Sea Level Rise: The influx of freshwater could also contribute to sea level rise, especially in the North Atlantic region. This could increase the risk of coastal flooding and erosion.Biodiversity and Fisheries: Changes in ocean temperature and salinity could have impacts on marine ecosystems, including changes in species distributions and productivity. This could have implications for fisheries, which are important for many coastal communities in northern Europe.Ocean Acidification and Deoxygenation: The disruption of ocean circulation could potentially exacerbate ocean acidification and deoxygenation, both of which are major threats to marine life.It's important to note that the precise outcomes are hard to predict and would depend on a range of factors, including the amount of freshwater released, the rate of release, and how the Earth's climate system responds. Moreover, these effects would likely interact with other impacts of climate change, such as increasing temperatures and changing precipitation patterns. The potential disruption of the thermohaline circulation is one of the many reasons why it's so important to mitigate climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Dengue Fever: How UK Outbreaks Could Be on the Horizon
30:18In this episode, we explore the potential impact of climate change on the spread of dengue fever and other infectious diseases, with a focus on the United Kingdom. As global temperatures rise, the mosquitoes carrying dengue fever could find the UK to be a suitable breeding ground, posing a significant health risk to millions of people.We'll examine how factors like temperature, precipitation, and humidity are influenced by climate change, leading to increased dengue transmission during rainy or monsoon seasons. We'll also delve into a study that highlights the connection between climatic hazards and the aggravation of 58% of human pathogenic diseases worldwide.Lastly, we'll discuss the importance of addressing the root cause of the problem by reducing greenhouse gas emissions and exploring what we can do to limit the damage. Join us to understand the crucial links between climate change, infectious diseases, and the urgent need for action.
What a Waste of Good food
30:28Food waste is a significant problem in relation to climate change for several reasons:Production emissions: The production of food, including farming, transportation, and processing, generates greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. When food is wasted, all the emissions associated with its production are also wasted, effectively amplifying the environmental impact of the food system.Methane emissions: When food waste decomposes in landfills, it generates methane, a potent greenhouse gas with a global warming potential 28 to 36 times greater than carbon dioxide over a 100-year period. By reducing food waste, we can decrease the amount of methane released into the atmosphere.Deforestation and land use: Food production is a major driver of deforestation and land use change, both of which contribute to climate change. Wasting food means that the land and resources used to produce it are also wasted, leading to unnecessary deforestation and habitat loss.Water and resource waste: Agriculture is responsible for a significant portion of global water usage, and many food production processes consume substantial amounts of energy and other resources. Wasting food results in the waste of these valuable resources, exacerbating environmental issues and contributing to climate change.Social and economic implications: Food waste also has social and economic consequences, as the resources used to produce wasted food could be allocated more effectively to address food insecurity or invested in sustainable production methods that mitigate climate change.Addressing food waste can help to mitigate the impacts of climate change by reducing emissions, conserving resources, and promoting more sustainable and efficient food systems. Efforts to reduce food waste can include better storage and transportation, more accurate supply and demand forecasting, consumer education, and policy changes that support the reduction of waste at various stages of the food supply chain.#wastefood#StopFoodWasteDay #podcast
CFCs are increasing, What are we doing about it
29:36Monitoring CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons) is crucial for several reasons, mainly due to their adverse effects on the environment and climate. The reasons why CFCs should be monitored include:Ozone layer depletion: CFCs are known to break down the Earth's ozone layer by releasing chlorine atoms when exposed to ultraviolet (UV) radiation. A single chlorine atom can break down thousands of ozone molecules, causing a significant depletion of the ozone layer. This thinning of the ozone layer allows more harmful UV radiation to reach the Earth's surface, resulting in numerous negative consequences for humans, animals, and plants.Greenhouse gas emissions: CFCs are potent greenhouse gases, with global warming potentials thousands of times greater than carbon dioxide (CO2). They can trap heat in the Earth's atmosphere, contributing to climate change and global warming. Monitoring CFCs can help us understand their role in the global climate system and develop strategies to reduce their emissions.Compliance with international agreements: The Montreal Protocol and its amendments have established a framework for phasing out the production and consumption of CFCs and other ozone-depleting substances. Monitoring the levels of CFCs in the atmosphere is essential to ensure compliance with these agreements and evaluate the effectiveness of the measures taken by countries to phase out these harmful substances.Detection of illegal activities: Despite the international ban on CFC production and consumption, there may still be instances of illegal production, trade, and use. Monitoring CFC levels in the atmosphere can help identify such activities and take appropriate measures to stop them.Assessing the ozone layer's recovery: Monitoring CFC concentrations in the atmosphere allows scientists to track the recovery of the ozone layer over time. As CFC levels decrease, the ozone layer is expected to recover gradually. Observing this progress helps verify the effectiveness of global efforts to protect the ozone layer and can inform future policies and actions.Guiding research and development: Monitoring CFCs can provide valuable information for researchers and industries working on developing alternative substances and technologies. Understanding the behavior and concentration of CFCs in the atmosphere can inform the development of safer alternatives that are less harmful to the environment and climate.In summary, monitoring CFCs is essential for protecting the ozone layer, mitigating climate change, ensuring compliance with international agreements, detecting illegal activities, assessing the ozone layer's recovery, and guiding research and development of alternative technologies.
UK Unprepared about Risks Associated with Climate Change
31:39The UK is in for a rude awakening as it faces a range of climate risks that could cause significant damage to its infrastructure and communities. In a shocking report, the Climate Change Committee (CCC) has concluded that the UK is "strikingly unprepared" for the looming threats of climate change. From food security to water supply, transport to health, business to agriculture, and finance, adaptation efforts are "lacking across the board".But that's not all - the CCC report also reveals that the UK's efforts to tackle climate risks have fallen short in almost every sector. This includes the critical areas of food security, water supply, and infrastructure. It's a worrying trend that could have disastrous consequences for the UK's future.The CCC report closely links to the UK Climate Risk Assessment (UKCRA), which provides a comprehensive understanding of the risks and opportunities associated with climate change in the UK. The CCC's analysis and recommendations are used to inform the development of the UKCRA and to shape the government's policy and decision-making in response to the risks and opportunities identified.The UK needs to step up its game in the face of these climate risks, and fast. The CCC and UKCRA must continue to work together to monitor progress and provide essential advice to help the UK adapt to the impacts of climate change. The time for action is now before it's too late.
Urgency for Swift and Drastic Action on climate
30:47In this episode will discuss the urgent need for swift and drastic action on climate change. We will explore the current state of the planet and the impact that human activities are having on our environment. We will also discuss the potential consequences of not taking action and the importance of taking action now. We discuss the UN's new ten actions to Everyone can help limit climate change. these range from the way we travel to the electricity we use, the food we eat, and the things we buy, we can make a difference.Finally, we will discuss the importance of taking swift and drastic action on climate change. We will highlight some of the steps that individuals, businesses, and governments can take to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate the impacts of climate change. We will also explore the role of technology and innovation in addressing climate change.
Peat moss compost being banned
29:49Phasing out the use of peat moss is considered a good thing for several reasons, mainly related to its environmental and ecological impacts. Here are some key reasons why reducing or eliminating the use of peat moss is beneficial:Preservation of carbon sinks: Peatlands, where peat moss grows, are vital carbon sinks, storing vast amounts of carbon over long periods. Extracting peat moss releases stored carbon into the atmosphere, contributing to climate change. Phasing out peat moss use helps reduce carbon emissions and mitigate climate change impacts.Biodiversity conservation: Peatlands are home to many unique plant and animal species, some of which are endangered or rare. The destruction of peatlands for peat moss extraction disrupts these ecosystems, leading to habitat loss and a decline in biodiversity. By phasing out peat moss, we can help protect these valuable habitats and the species that depend on them.Water management: Peatlands play a crucial role in water management, acting as natural filters and helping to regulate water levels. The extraction of peat moss can disrupt these processes, leading to water pollution, increased flood risks, and diminished water storage capacity. Reducing peat moss use helps maintain healthy peatlands and their valuable water management functions.Soil preservation: Peatlands take thousands of years to form, and peat moss extraction can quickly deplete this non-renewable resource. Phasing out peat moss helps to preserve these unique soil formations for future generations.Alternative materials: There are sustainable alternatives to peat moss available, such as coconut coir, compost, and other soil amendments. These options can fulfill many of the same functions as peat moss without the negative environmental impacts.In conclusion, phasing out peat moss is a positive step towards preserving peatland ecosystems, mitigating climate change, and promoting sustainable practices. By seeking alternatives and reducing demand for peat moss, we can help protect these valuable natural resources and the many benefits they provide.
Has the UK Power grid reached capacity
31:09The UK power grid is facing challenges as more renewable energy sources come online because renewable sources such as wind and solar power are intermittent and can fluctuate in their output depending on the weather conditions. This means that there can be times when there is more renewable energy being generated than is needed, and other times when there is not enough renewable energy to meet the demand.To balance the electricity grid and ensure that there is always enough power to meet the demand, the National Grid has to rely on a variety of measures including:Flexible generation: This involves using gas-fired power stations to generate electricity when renewable energy output is low or when demand is high.Storage: Energy storage solutions such as batteries can be used to store excess renewable energy and release it back into the grid when needed.Demand-side response: This involves encouraging consumers to reduce their electricity usage during periods of high demand.Interconnectors: The UK is connected to other European countries through interconnectors which allow for the import or export of electricity depending on the needs of the grid.Despite these measures, the UK power grid is reaching capacity because the current infrastructure was not designed to accommodate the large-scale deployment of renewable energy sources. This means that significant investment is needed to upgrade the grid and ensure that it can handle the increasing amounts of renewable energy being generated.In addition to the challenges faced by the grid itself, there are also challenges related to the integration of renewable energy sources into the wider energy system. For example, the increased use of electric vehicles will require significant changes to the way that electricity is generated, transmitted, and distributed to ensure that there is enough capacity to meet the additional demand.Overall, while renewable energy sources are essential for reducing carbon emissions and achieving a more sustainable energy system, they present significant challenges for the UK power grid. It is therefore essential that investment is made to upgrade the infrastructure and develop new technologies to ensure that the grid can cope with the increasing amounts of renewable energy being generated.