blogging, Environment

Disinformation and the Climate Crisis

Anyone reading independent news reports would be well aware of the existential threat posed by the climate crisis. Predictions state the planet has only ten years within which we can enact significant change if we want to avoid devastating environmental consequences.

bank climate change

When does climate change become climate crisis?

The answer is, “decades ago.”

The Climate Covenant, Martin C. Frederiks IV

With wild disinformation on the climate crisis raging and short-term strategic planning so prevalent in business circles, it’s encouraging to read an independent perspective from an accomplished writer whose fundamental message is – if we actually start doing the right things now, we can make a difference so our children can enjoy a sustainable lifestyle on this planet.

IV Words Blogger Martin Fredericks, in his new book, The Climate Covenant, seeks not only to inspire real, unbiased discussions on climate change, but also seeks to motivate readers to become truly active in making non-violent demands for climate change. That is, by amplifying the message with elected officials and throughout the wider community, because the matter is urgent.

The Cost of Economic Development and Redefining Growth

Every time we build – every time we “grow” – there are cost to humanity. And the bill is coming due.

Martin C. Frederiks Iv, the climate covenant

Even before the great depression and monetarist economic theory, economic growth was seen as progressive and highly desirable. Nature, it was believed, was infinitely bountiful and was there for the use of mankind.

Photo by Markus Spiske on Pexels.com

Martin Frederik reinforces that there will be a tipping point after which nature cannot recover from man’s activities and, therefore, economic growth and activities need to be reframed and perhaps, redefined.

Instead of analysing progress and growth in terms of G.D.P, new constructions, or interest rates, it is suggested society might rather measure, growth,” in terms of improvements in water quality, or increases in re-forestation levels.

How different would an economically prosperous country be, in a nature-based growth scenario?

Is this possible under the current economic models? With new practices, attitudes and initiatives aimed at coping with changing conditions, Martin Frederiks believes it is.

Climate Change Obstacles and Initiatives

The Climate Covenant also comprehensively examines the latest debates on the contributions of clean coal, methane emissions, gas flares and other fossil fuel emissions, to global warming; the petroleum industry’s attitudes, policies and requests for pandemic bail-outs; the disinformation about greenwashing campaigns; Greta Thunberg’s climate activism and the environmental problems with ‘build back better,’ all with real-life examples.

Wind and Renewable Energy Solutions

The author explains how clean energy, from wind, can be part of a climate solution. A proven example: Schleswig-Holstein in Northern Germany derives a massive 40% of their energy from wind turbines, whilst Martin’s home state of North Dakota has 1.8%.

Dakota’s energy infrastructure can’t currently cope with moving wind-generated electricity, and the solving of this problem is complex. Building electrical infrastructure requires massive investment, business needs clarification from the Government on the tax implications for and of new technology, plus there’s widespread community opposition to the aesthetics of wind turbines and all that must be sorted.

But again, it is possible. The old energies are not without big problems, either. Contrast the Northern German successful transition with Texas:-

10-13% of power distribution failures in Texas were due to issues with solar or wind facilities, (the frozen wind turbine fallacy), while the other 87-90% was due to equipment malfunctions at coal and natural gas facilities and distribution networks.

Ref: The Climate Covenant
beach storm

Disinformation on Climate Change and Weather Anomalies?

A salient point the author makes in the book, The Climate Covenant, is that reporters so often make decisions about how they pitch stories using value-based judgements rather than science, especially when it relates to an aberrant weather event that may, or may not be related, to the climate crisis.

Science has already debunked the populist opinions that if there’s no really hot weather, global warming can’t be real. Although all kinds of weather will be experienced with climate change, it is known wild weather and extreme weather events will be experienced more frequently as the atmosphere warms.

Personally, I have lost count of the number of times I have heard or read, “This is a once in a lifetime extreme weather event,” from a news report, in the last five years.

Therefore, The Climate Covenant’s intention is to motivate readers into NON-VIOLENT actions that reduce and eliminate negative environmental and planetary impacts.

What We Can Do to Combat the Climate Crisis

According to the author, there is no time to wait. He believes we must:

  • Think and act in situations so that how and what we do is about saving the planet and is ALWAYS part of the calculations
  • Support locally grown and sustainable food producers
  • Contact our political representative and insist they pass and enact legislation that addresses climate change
  • Vote for the ones that have this goal
  • Work on and contribute to campaigns for candidates who put the climate crisis at the top of their agenda

Plus, Martin gives us 25 more simple and effective ways we can all fight the climate crisis.

Be the change we want to see in the world

Further to his mission to increase knowledge and motivate action, Martin Frederiks has founded the Knights of the Climate Covenant, a nonprofit organisation with a global mission to increase the number of people who take nonviolent personal, community and political actions to address global warming and resulting climate change. (see below)

The more people who are informed, the closer Martin believes we are to reaching the critical 3.5% of climatic activists necessary to initiate and demand real sustainable and lasting positive change, not only for our planet but for our shared future.

I am very happy to recommend this book.

Information and knowledge is power.

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39 thoughts on “Disinformation and the Climate Crisis”

      1. I keep thinking about the dire ramifications of a cataclysmic natural disaster in our lifetimes. Let’s say the Yellowstone super-volcano here in the U.S. should erupt. It’s at the center of a national park and is an incredibly popular tourist site. It last exploded around 70,000 years ago. Speculations about a similar eruption now presume the ash fallout would spread across most of North America within a matter of weeks. I believe the fallout could have a much wider range, possibly engulfing North America in only a few days and the Northern Hemisphere in a matter of weeks. There’s also the possibility of 2 super-volcanic eruptions occurring close together in different parts of the world, as may have happened in 535-536 C.E.

        There’s also the possibility of a meteor strike, but I think that’s remote. It’s more likely a highly lethal influenza pandemic could erupt in our lifetimes; something that would make the 14th century “Black Plague” and the 1918 Spanish Flu look tame by comparison. I maintain the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is just a warmup.

        But imagine what would happen if all telecommunications systems collapse because of a natural calamity. Water and sewage treatment plants could go off line, as the electrical grid disintegrates. I think we’d be in more distress than our ancient predecessors were in catastrophic situations because we’re so dependent upon our electronic devices.

        When archeologists finally began unearthing the remains of Pompeii, they found bodies of people clutching their loved ones. If something similar happened now, archeologists will later find the bodies of people clutching their cell phones.

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        1. I think you are right about people dying clutching their phones in that eruption scenario. If we think of that as a possibility, life is indeed precarious. But we have to continue assuming this won’t happen and do our best to help others in the time we have

          Liked by 1 person

    1. There was a lot of atmospheric pollution from steam trains in the 19th Century, Peggy. There appeared to be a temporary amelioration as steam and the use of dirty coal subsided. Was this what Humboldt was referring to?

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  1. You and I have disagreed on this before.

    And we both from the inglorious olden times. I always have called BS on the promoted climate emergency and instead sit in the arena of environmental crisis. The distinction being climate deals with one aspect which is Co2 while environment deals with all the crappy things that gets done or dumped as the cost of having a modern civilisation. While similar there are distinct differences between them.

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  2. Your post only serves,to me, to emphasize my very-long-held opinion that the fourth estate should be considered as the main source of practically everything wrong with our thinking.
    Those bastards write and we read; and for some reason we accept.
    Were they all like George Monbiot, things would be different.

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  3. I launched my own sustainable brand in India last year – and I’ve been trying to educate people to live more sustainably but most people still view climate change as a boogeyman not real and being used to discourage them from living life as they wish.
    I’m definitely going to check out this book! Thanks for the recommendation!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am glad you are interested in this important topic. Unfortunately the first world has the luxury of feeling stronger about this topic as our basic needs are mostly met. It is hard to worry about the world’s climate when there is no work and little money for food as is the life of the poor in parts of Africa for example. Does the Indian farming sector complain about diminishing harvests?Or notice weather changes?

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  4. This is an important article and I thank you for the recommendation of a must read book, Amanda! We struggle all to get our voices heard, and we must realise we have to help countries and people who we in the western world have made suffer from our reckless living. And we cannot wait.
    In Sweden we have such silly arguments against windpower: How about people on the coast thinking it will destroy the view, and inland people saying the same?Thank you again for your engagement.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know that the installation of wind turbines in many areas can be highly controversial. I think there has to be some happy medium. If the residents don’t want wind turbines, are they happy to be off the electricity grid? Then again, it is better to have them in places that are not of outstanding physical beauty. Common sense should prevail over the high income residents and pecuniary interests. I hope you find the book a good read, Ann-Christine.

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  5. I too will look out for this book. I don’t know whether climate activists will win the day. I’m one of many who, like you, try to do my best, as do most of my friends. But it doesn’t stop me leaping into the car to go to town to shop (I live in a village poorly served by public transport), probably more often than I need if I were organised, buying far too much coffee, and all sorts of other things which by themselves aren’t deal-breakers, but do add up. But as I shop, I realise how many people aren’t evaluating their choices. And we aren’t being led from the top, in this as in so many other areas of life..

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is disappointing when our politicians are anything but role models. The young people know more about sustainability than the heavy weights making the strategic decisions. I am sure you do your best Margaret and you are aware of how you might improve your approach/activities, within reason. If everyone did their little bit to help the planet and learn more about the real facts, more politicians would have to take notice.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Thanks Amanda. This is excellent. I found of interest that a science teacher in Oklahoma, I think, did a project with her class and determined there are about 700 peer reviewed websites focused on the science of climate change, but they are overwhelmed by 30,000 fossil fuel industry funded websites that have varying degrees of climate change and man-made influence denial.

    I think more should be highlighted by the multinational project that put in place solar energy to power a large swath of southern Australia. And, even in Texas, which you noted, 1/5 of the oil rich state is now powered by renewable energy with the state general assembly quietly approving power lines out to collect the wind energy. In Iowa over 40% of its electricity is powered by wind emergy.

    Good things are happening, they just need to happen faster whether it is tidal energy off Scotland, solar energy in Australia and California, or onshore wind energy in the plain states of the US or offshore wind in the North Sea.. And, these stories need to get told. Keith

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    1. The skewed imbalance of information on climate change is frustrating, so I am so pleased to hear that more industry is getting on board and thanks for the examples. We hear of some really great initiatives, but then the coal lobby’s power and retorts here, sends me two steps back in despair. What could really turn the tide is if Governments and industry unequivocally committed to change. I see Bentleigh have now made a commitment to move to electric vehicles. While electric is not without its environmental cost, it is a step towards moving away from fossil fuel dependency. And I like that.

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      1. Amanda, thanks. We are passed the tipping point on coal as the cost of renewables is on par production wise and better when all costs are factored in. Building new coal plants that will be obsolete is not a good investment. The future holds many renewable approaches. The key is the battery storage has gotten scalable with Tesla leading the way as evidenced in the Australia success. Keith

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  7. In many developing countries little to no policies exist to save the planet. Many so called developed countries are bucking against OECD policies. It’s a tough road ahead. On the plus side, I am encouraged by the many automobile manufacturers committed to only producing EV vehicles in the future. I switched to an electric lawn mower this past summer. Next is the car…….well maybe an an electric bike first. We can save ourselves, but all need to “just do it”.

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    1. Hi Kevin, Thanks for your valued comment and I do like that you are actively aiming to convert to electric appliances and possibly a car in future. I would like an electric car too, but the Mo.t.h. (man of the house) is not convinced it is a good idea – yet. So he votes for a hybrid vehicle, as an interim measure. I have concerns regarding the environmental degradation from the mining of lithium and precious metals and the significant increase in demand for those with electric technology. I do love that the air quality will change with more electric vehicles and the fossil fuel industry will lose it stranglehold and influence on world economies of many places and the wasteful and horrific conflicts that have arisen over fights for oil and gas reserves.
      We have had an electric mower for a couple of years now. They are great however, my aim would be to eliminate the lawn for a more environmentally friendly surface that does not require the use of water and eliminates the need for a mower.
      I can understand why some OECD countries are opting out or bucking the policies. We in the privileged first world have the audacity to expect poorer countries to comply with our expectations when essential needs and feeding their people are more a priority for them. I think the approach has to be more collaborative and beneficial for them to use technology that is NOT reliant on fossil fuels. And then we enter the realm of politics and geopolitics. Is their benefit for the first world in keeping the third world underdeveloped?

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      1. Agreed, countries with less resources cannot to expected to go it alone. Implementing remedial steps will take a village.
        Oh, and when those EV lithium batteries reach end of life, then what?

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  8. I am so disappointed around the topic of climate change. I took a climate change unit at university about 10 years ago now where the same things we were discussing then are still being discussed now. They’ve been plenty of advances since in technology and greener products but we still have so long to go and this change in our lifestyles needs backing from people and companies of influence. That is what I think is still lacking. We really need to move on from the conversation of is it real or not and just get on with change!

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    1. Interesting that you learnt about this topic ten years ago as I learnt about it forty years ago at University in the eighties!!!! The scientific community knew global temperature could not rise more than 2 or 3 degrees even then and we knew what was causing it! So it seems that ears are defiantly closed and time doesn’t help. Although the increases in global temperatures and connections to extreme weather are finally started to be understood by more sectors,, but as you see by Keith’s comment, there is so much money being poured in convincing the public climate change is a furphy. Just as the tobacco industry die with smoking being linked to cancer. It is hard to combat but we won’t give up trying to spread the message – just as I do here! I just hope there is time as the clock is ticking faster ever day!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. They had so much time to do something! I hope to live long enough to see this day. Reminds me of how I read an article recently of the benefits of eating meat which was sponsored by a meat company hahaha. At least they had a note underneath the article to declare it.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Thank you so much for the wonderful review, Amanda! I truly appreciate it, and I know it will help with the goal of spreading the word about the urgency of addressing global warming and resulting climate change to more people. I hope some of your readers will check out the book and join Knights of the Climate Covenant from six nations and 20 U.S. states in doing whatever we can to encourage our neighbors, elected officials and governments to take actions and implement laws that will save us from ourselves. Thank you again! All the best. 🙂

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    1. Some bloggers are already interested in following up, Martin, so I am very much heartened by that. But then, the bloggers who respond here are pretty smart, cool characters!
      Thank you for putting together an informative publication. Your message will spread far and wide across the oceans to all the followers of StPA!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. If only “end of the world” alarmists, whom we’ve heard about as long as humans have been on the Earth, and in another thousand, even ten thousand years, there will still be men and women standing outside, in the beautiful sun, breathing fresh air, holding signs about the end of the world, would do real scientific research. They simply don’t know how, don’t know how to think for themselves, but add fodder to unrealistic fear.

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    1. Many thanks for adding to the discussion, dolphinwrite. I do wonder in what fashion mankind might survive environmental catastrophe should that occur. I think man is adaptable and resilient so no doubt our species will survive. Having said that, these folks are part of the spectrum of human reaction. Albeit knee-jerk reactions without solid factual basis and unfortunately, untrained in research. The mass media have amplified this message to reach more of folks will this kind of thinking and no awareness of the dangers of propaganda and how it is used. Something it seems tabloid newspapers are well versed in, even though their intention may be more related to newspaper sales and keeping their jobs than nefarious reasons. Where in the world are you situated and how do find the media in your region? I am in Australia and the growing monopoly of media interest is concerning.

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