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The Australian 2022 Election: moving in the right direction?

By Robin Tschötschel

“It’s going to get worse before it gets worse”, summarised Liberal Party pollster Tony Barry on election night. And while the intricacies of the Australian preferential election system still keep the official final outcome open, the devastating defeat of the centre-right alliance, the “Coalition” of the Liberal and National Parties, was already certain.

Image credit: Hugo Heimendinger, pexels.com

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Why Don’t We Act Now? The discrepancy between climate change awareness and action

By Marina Falke

Image source: pixabay.com

 

The 6th IPCC Report of Working Group 3 was published just about two months ago, on April 4, and stated once more and in further detail the urgency to mitigate climate change. As known, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) consists of politicians and scientist of the United Nation, grouped in three working groups focusing on different aspects of climate change. The third working group specializes in climate change mitigation and presents sources of global emissions as well as developments in emission reduction and mitigation efforts. Despite the great importance of the report’s findings, neither sufficient media coverage nor meaningful political reaction have yet materialized. Why is the gap between climate change’s urgency and action on it still so wide? Continue reading Why Don’t We Act Now? The discrepancy between climate change awareness and action

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Nord Stream 2: where the climate crisis meets geopolitics 

By Louisa Pröschel

From the get-go, the multi-billion euro investment “Nord Stream 2” has been widely criticized, regarding political independence from Russia, political oppression through Russia, and the climate implications of investing in gas pipelines.

A piece of Nord Stream pipe, Kotka, Finland. Source: WikiCommons

When there is an imminent threat of war looming over the horizon it is hard to find clear-cut answers to global issues. This is very much the case in the Ukraine-Russia conflict. Ongoing for the past eight years, the crisis has just been met with renewed media attention as Russia initiated a full-blown military standoff, deploying more than 100.000 troops to the border and demanding that Ukraine never be allowed to join NATO, a concession the alliance has ruled out. With a new threat of armed conflict on the horizon, politicians are grappling with diplomatic means to prevent all-out war. While Germany – one of the largest arms exporters – writhes at the thought of supporting Ukraine with weapons, insisting on other diplomatic means, the prominent stance seems to focus on economic sanctions, especially relating to the European energy and financial markets. Allies are increasingly disconcerted with Germany’s reluctance to use the termination of Nord Stream 2 as leverage in negotiations. Continue reading Nord Stream 2: where the climate crisis meets geopolitics 

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Climate Attention on Twitter: 2021 breaks attention records

by Amelia Peach

Still very much in the midst of the COVID-19 Pandemic, 2021 saw climate change continue its fight for public attention. Although still not quite able to match 2019’s daily average tweet count of 1429, with an average of only 1237 daily tweets, 2021 did see the top 3 highest peak days yet.

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#ATOMS4CLIMATE: The Nuclear Lobby at COP26

by Christopher Pavenstädt 

An energy source that, at least from a German viewpoint, has had his days numbered for quite some time finds new life at climate conferences: nuclear energy.

Pro-nuclear ‘activists’ at COP26, photo source: iaea.org

Not only countries that still count on nuclear energy like Japan and France covered the use of nuclear energy in their pavilions, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) was also there to promote nuclear energy as the green energy source of the future. The nuclear interest groups and agencies were granted quite some space to advocate at COP26, despite them fearing exclusion from the conference beforehand. One could imagine that an agency like the IAEA, equipped with considerable access to economic and political networks would focus on direct lobbying efforts, and while they did this in previous years, they were beginning to think of a different strategy for this year. Continue reading #ATOMS4CLIMATE: The Nuclear Lobby at COP26

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Eine Allegorie an den Klimawandel: Filmkritik „Don´t Look Up“ (2021)

Von Lea Sommer

Don’t Look Up film’s poster (2021). Image Source: Impawards, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Netflix appelliert mit der Veröffentlichung von „Don´t Look Up“ am 24. Dezember 2021 daran, die Wissenschaft ernst zu nehmen. Die Anspielung auf die Klimakrise und dessen Leugnung sind nicht zu übersehen. Dabei verfehlt er die Darstellung der gesellschaftlichen Lage und Handlungsfähigkeit. Wahrscheinlich, weil er diese nicht anerkennt.

 

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The Power of Data Transparency

by Louisa Pröschel 

Next year, in 2022, the IPCC will finalize its sixth assessment report. A report that is unarguably one of the most cited, far-reaching sources for trying to understand and argue policies that can mitigate the climate crisis and its impacts. It is exactly this type of imperative research that showcases the importance of transparent and reliable data. And just as much as countries need to be held accountable for providing accurate, up-to-date reporting on their CO2 emissions for policymaking, we need researchers and journalists worldwide to have access to this information as well.

Illustration by Stuart Rankin, Hotter or Colder Than Normal (Edited NASA/NOAA global map showing the most redent temperature deltas), 2015. Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/24354425@N03/19647953921

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Comparing Coverage of Climate Change Across the Global North and South

by Valerie Hase & Daniela Mahl

India and Thailand are among the countries affected most by climate change. Still, we know little about how news media in these nations cover climate change. In a recent study, we wanted to change that and asked: How and how much do countries from the Global North and South cover climate change?

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Unseen Scenes From COP26: E-Racing Cars And Youthwashing Events

By Christopher Pavenstädt

COP has now become a Global North Greenwashing Festival”, summarized Greta Thunberg as she closed the rally of the Youth Climate Strike in Glasgow.

COP26, Glasgow, November 2021. Photo by Christopher Pavenstädt

Greta has come a long way. In 2018, COP24 elevated her voice onto the global consciousness. The young, then 15-year-old girl talking in an accusing, emotional tone, to the distant, very formal process of the COP. Now, she doesn’t need the plenary hall anymore. Here, she was outside, missing no opportunity to distance herself from the inside of COP. My personal view of COP26 comes from my week-long experience in Glasgow, observing the unseen scenes — those which did not catch the media audience’s eye. Continue reading Unseen Scenes From COP26: E-Racing Cars And Youthwashing Events

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Where Realism Tips Into Optimism: Review of “The Ministry for the Future” (2020)

by Felix Schaumann

Just as the current climate talks begin , allow us to imagine another future. An optimist one.

Credit: Pixabay 8385

This spring, I gave my mother a book as a present, promising an optimistic take on climate change and on how our next 30 years might play out. Half a year later, she still has not read past page 32 – “it’s too depressing”, she says. I cannot blame her. The Ministry for the Future, a science fiction novel by Kim Stanley Robinson, starts with a heat wave killing around 20 million people in India and subsequent international conflict about unilateral solar geoengineering. On the other hand, the novel ends in 2050 with people flying around the globe in electric air ships, marveling at all the rewilded and restored ecosystems. In between, it forms a subtle narrative arc in which the initial pessimism (or realism) slowly and almost unnoticeably tips into optimism and hope. Continue reading Where Realism Tips Into Optimism: Review of “The Ministry for the Future” (2020)