If you are an every day reader of the news, it may surprise you to know that there were some important climate change stories that came out over the past week, that never made their way to the front page of newspapers. There were three notable news items that we want to share at Swell, to promote education about sustainability. We hope that by producing eco-friendly consumer goods and promoting education we can make an impact on the earth and leave it a greener place than we found it. Now for a brief synopsis of the stories:
In a report commissioned by Democratic Senator Maria Cantrell and Republican Senator Susan Collins, and released by the bipartisan Government Accountability Office recommends that the U.S federal government develop a plan to manage climate change risks. The report estimates that costs from climate change could balloon to $35 billion dollars per year within the next 30 to 40 years. These costs are both direct and indirect -- from the effects of natural disasters and our own consumer culture that has polluted much of the earth, creating disposals in our ocean; just look at the Pacific Garbage Patch.
Next up, story number two -- the EPA canceled the scientific talks that three of its scientists were scheduled to give at a conference in Rhode Island this past Monday. It is still unclear as to why the talks were cancelled, as the speakers we in attendance and there were no evident issues to prevent it from taking place. However, many scientists, policymakers, and observers fear such actions are a step away from science censorship. The only explanation that I have seen from the EPA as written in the Washington Post is,T"he EPA has offered little explanation for the decision to prevent the scientists from participating, other than to say in a statement that they were allowed to attend the event but not present because “it is not an EPA conference.”
Google Trend for 2017 using the words "climate change"
Last, but certainly not least is story number three: Nicaragua officially signed on to the Paris Climate Agreement. Now that they have hopped on board, the only countries who have not signed on are the United States and Syria. Maybe it's just me, but it seems like an odd camp for the US to choose -- siding with Syria on climate change issues? Nicaragua originally did not sign not because they did not feel the deal went far enough, but that does not seem to be the case for the last two countries holding out on signing.
I do not know about you, but this makes me a bit concerned. Story two highlights the growing concern in the academic community about science censorship, but the fact that these articles were not widely disseminated across the traditional news outlets is also strange. If I did not do research for the purpose of blogging about sustainability and environmental awareness, I myself may not have been aware of these goings on. This is all to say the education piece is vital now more than ever. It is not only important to reduce, reuse, recycle, and consume responsibly, but also we need to share this message and educate even more people, more quickly. The only way to stay ahead of the curve is to get more people on board the environmental awareness train.
What will you do to support a sustainable future for the generations to come? Please comment below, and share this story to educate your own network. We must work together to increase awareness and combat the cycle of consumption and waste -- that is our Swell Vision and we need your help to achieve it.