#FindYourRole: The peaceful perseverers

The Sustainable Hour no. 436 | Podcast notes


Guests in The Sustainable Hour on 2 November 2022 are Caroline Danaher and Maree Maria who this Friday will be having their 200th Climate Educational Gathering in Geelong for Fridays for Future, Kay Wennagel who is facilitating an electric vehicle bulk buy in Darebin, and peace activist Nick Deane from the Independent and Peaceful Australia Network.

“20 years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the things you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
~ Mark Twain, American writer

Caroline Danaher and Maree Maria from Fridays For Future Geelong tells us that this coming Friday, 4 November 2022, is the 200th consecutive Friday their group has gathered near Geelong’s Town Hall with banners, signs and pamphlets to educate Geelong and district residents and visitors about the threats that the climate crisis has for our town.

We chat about the highs and lows of these occasions and why they keep showing up week after week. Fridays For Future is the organisations founded by the then 13-year-old Swedish school student Greta Thunberg as she sat outside the Swedish parliament in August 2018.

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Kay Wennagal is facilitator of the bulk buy of electric vehicles from the Good Car Company, organised by Darebin Climate Action. Both Colin and Mik have been beneficiaries of such a bulk buy in Geelong and enthusiastically support the initiative Kay is facilitating in the northern suburbs of Naarm (Melbourne).

They are having a “Show and Shine day” this coming Saturday between 10am and 2pm at Bundoora Secondary College. You can find out more and register your interest here: www.goodcar.co/darebin.

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Nick Deane is a peace activist and member of the Independent and Peaceful Australia Network, IPAN – a network of community, faith and peace groups, trade unions and concerned individuals around Australia aiming to build public dialogue and pressure for change to a truly independent foreign policy for our country – one in which our government plays a positive role in solving international conflicts peacefully.

We chat with Nick about IPAN’s vision, which is very much in synch with the vision that Dr Elizabeth Boulton outlined on the show earlier this year via her “PLAN E”, a plan we are committed to supporting.

You can find out more on IPAN at www.ipan.org.au and about Plan E at muse/jhu.edu

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We start off today with acknowledgement of The Sustainable Hour’s 9th anniversary via a clip from the then new radio program on Geelong’s community radio station 94.7 The Pulse: The Sustainable Hour no. 1 with Mike Lawrence and Mik Aidt introducing the hour with their visions of an exciting future and emerging climate leadership for both Geelong and the world on the sustainability front via this show.

Yet another urgent warning follows from the head of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres. This time he says that an urgent transformation across all sectors is needed if we want to avoid the climate catastrophe that climate science has been warning us about for so long. Collectively, humanity is currently heading for a rise in emissions by 2030, when really we should be halving our emissions by then. It is clear from his language and use of words that Mr Guterres is getting nervous and anxious about the lack of action.

Mik rounds in on the heads of our publicly funded broadcasters ABC and SBS for not giving this urgent matter the emphasis it should have in the media networks they lead in our country. This comes from the lack of emphasis both of these media organisations gave to the dire warnings coming from both the United Nations and a group of world-leading climate scientists.

Sir David Attenborough has warned for years about the impact that the climate crisis will have on national defence systems – in his terms it will lead to “the collapse of everything that gives us security”.

Independent Senator David Pocock gave a brilliant speech on koalas and conservation of the environment on 26 October 2022 – we play an excerpt.

The songs we play are: Formidable Vegetable’s ‘Climate Movement’, Midnight Oil’s ‘We Resist’ and rounding off with an excerpt of Missy Higgins’ ‘The Difference’.

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Colin Mockett‘s Global Outlook begins this week with a series of reports released ahead of the United Nations COP27 in Sharm-el-Sheikh, Egypt, which starts on 6 November and runs for 12 days.

The most significant is the UN Climate report – the 13th annual edition that gives an overview where greenhouse emissions are predicted to be in 2030 and where they should be to avert the worst impacts of climate change.

The new report shows that updated national pledges since COP26 are negligible and that we are nowhere near getting the Paris Agreement goal of limiting global warming to below 2°C. Policies currently in place point to a 2.8°C temperature rise by the end of the century. The current pledges will only reduce this to somewhere between 2.4 and 2.6°C.

The report concludes that only an urgent system-wide transformation at Sharm-el-Sheikh could deliver the level of changes and cuts needed to limit greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. It provides a list of how to deliver this transformation, looking at decarbonising in the electricity supply, industry, transport and buildings sectors, as well as world food and financial systems. All need to severely reduce their use and support of fossil fuels.

Meanwhile, a report in the Netherlands and reprinted in The Saturday Paper names a succession of Australian federal governments as having “institutionalised greenwashing on a massive scale.” It points to our government naming fossil fuel companies as ‘carbon neutral’ because of its government offsets.

“A carbon neutral oil and gas company?” said Clements Kaupa at Vrije University Amsterdam, “That’s ridiculous!” He was referring to Cooper Energy’s claim to be “Australia first neutral carbon gas producer”. Yet this was endorsed by the Australian government.

It’s just one of more than 100 new fossil fuel projects currently being proposed right now in Australia. The Netherlands accepts that it is not physically possible for fossil fuel companies to be carbon neutral. They took Shell to court to prove that point and it’s now calling for Australia to adopt similar standards.

Meanwhile the UN report’s findings were largely replicated by a new report from the prestigious British Medical Journal The Lancet, which released its 2022 countdown report on world health and climate change. It basically comes to exactly the same conclusions about fossil fuels, only looking at the problem from a different angle.

The Lancet report examines the health of people around the world and says that governments and companies continue to make choices that threaten the health and survival of their own people. It says that our over-reliance on fossil fuels is driving health impacts of converging global crises and putting health systems under huge strains. It names risks to food insecurity, infectious disease transmission, energy poverty and deaths from exposure to air pollution – all as a result of burning fossil fuels.

It pointed out that most countries they analysed, allocated 100s of billions of US dollars to subsidising fossil fuel companies – sometimes at amounts greater than their health budgets. Meanwhile, the strategies of those companies are leading to emissions that are causing widespread sickness. It says the world is at a critical juncture and accelerating the change to clean and efficient energy was the only way to aid recovery and deliver cascading health benefits.

From Europe came a speech at the weekend from no less than Greta Thunberg, who said, essentially, that we can’t rely on our leaders to solve the climate crisis because they are too close and too reliant on Fossil Fuel industries. She urged the people of the world to take action – not by demonstrating, but by using their own resources to decarbonise their own individual lives.

And just to complete a quartet of pre-Cop 27 reports, the World Meteorological Organisation released its own report ahead of COP 27 which showed that atmospheric levels of the three main greenhouse gasses, carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide have reached new highs, meaning conclusively that our planet is set to continue to warm.

Colin decides not to mention Forest Green Rovers this week, beyond that the mens team lost 0-2 to Barnsley and the women’s First lost 5-1 to Bournemouth.

So instead, he finishes with another pre-COP27 UN Regional Climate report which found as a conclusive fact that renewables are the cheapest form of energy in most, if not all, parts of the world.

It noted that China is currently installing almost as much renewable capacity as the rest of the world combined. China is also manufacturing 85 percent of the world’s solar panels and it’s selling about half of all electric vehicles purchased worldwide.

To finish this segment on a positive note, Colin outlines a new paper on the energy transition published in the energy magazine Joule which says that a faster decarbonisation path would make the world trillions of dollars richer by 2050. That’s money is currently going to the fossil fuel industry and financing the opposition to governments taking significant climate emergency action.

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We’ll be back next week continuing to ask why are we allowing this to happen? Why aren’t we, in recent guest Tim Hollo’s words, #RefusingConsent for this to continue? We’ll be back next week encouraging everyone to find a way to engage in the peaceful climate revolution. Until then, be the difference!


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We at The Sustainable Hour would like to pay our respect to the traditional custodians of the land on which we
are broadcasting, the Wathaurong People, and pay our respect to their elders, past, present and future.

The traditional owners lived in harmony with the land. They nurtured it and thrived in often harsh conditions for millenia before they were invaded. Their land was then stolen from them – it wasn’t ceeded. It is becoming more and more obvious that, if we are to survive the climate emergency we are facing, we have much to learn from their land management practices.

Our battle for climate justice won’t be won until our First Nations brothers and sisters have their true justice. When we talk about the future, it means extending our respect to those children not yet born, the generations of the future – remembering the old saying that, “We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors. We borrow it from our children.”
The decisions currently being made around Australia to ignore the climate emergency are being made by those who won’t be around by the time the worst effects hit home. How disrespectful and unfair is that?



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Read more about Mik’s “ABC #FindYourRole” campaign

Read more about Greta’s recent statements

Are you awake?

Four successive failed rainy seasons in the Horn of Africa have pushed 30 million people to the brink of famine in Somaliland, Kenya, and Ethiopia and the recent devastating floods in Pakistan have affected another 30 million people in the blink of an eye.

“Are you awake, or are you sleepwalking? Have you faced up to what’s going on around the world? The last few months have seen wildfires rage across Europe, heatwaves break records across Asia, and hurricanes batter America’s coast. While extreme flooding has left a third of Pakistan underwater, relentless drought means famine looms over East Africa. Our planet is unravelling before our eyes, and millions of people are dying or being left destitute because of it.”
~ Excerpt from Extinction Rebellion‘s newsletter

The World Resource Institute recently released its State of Climate Action 2022. The report, providing a comprehensive assessment of the global gap in climate action across the world’s highest-emitting systems, finds that none of its 40 indicators are on track to deliver the systemwide transformations necessary to achieve 2030 targets.

A similarly critical counterpart, the UN Environment Programme’s Emissions Gap Report 2022 echoed the message by stating that there is no credible pathway to 1.5C in place’. Lack of national pledges taken since last year and failure to cut carbon emissions means ‘rapid transformation of societies is the only option to limit impacts’, the UN body finds.

→ University of Sydney – 27 October 2022:
Scientists warn of Earth’s unequivocal climate emergency
“Sixteen of the planet’s 35 vital signs are at record extremes.”

→ BioScience – 26 october 2022:
World Scientists’ Warning of a Climate Emergency 2022
“We are now at “code red” on planet Earth. Humanity is unequivocally facing a climate emergency. The scale of untold human suffering, already immense, is rapidly growing with the escalating number of climate-related disasters. Therefore, we urge scientists, citizens, and world leaders to read this Special Report and quickly take the necessary actions to avoid the worst effects of climate change.”

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#FindYourRole

With each day that goes by, more and more people will realize how absolutely fundamental climate is to civilization and all life on Earth, and how villainous it is that fossil fuel execs have irreversibly, knowingly changed Earth’s climate for their profit, and continue to do so.

Engaging the public regularly is KEY to effective climate action to solve the climate crisis in the timeframe we have:

  • be visible ✅
  • be personal ✅
  • be optimistic ✅
  • list solutions, not barriers ✅

More on how YOU can help, using advice from experts:

Crowdsourcing Sustainability:
16 Sustainability Leaders Weigh In: How YOU Can Help To Reverse Global Warming


Conclusion: If we’re going to stop global warming, it will probably be because enough people like you and me started doing these things. What we each do matters. A lot.

There are hundreds of things you could be doing to help reverse global warming, but we need to focus on the most effective actions. As you can see, incremental changes alone aren’t good enough anymore. We need to take the actions that will have the most impact.

The best actions to take, as identified by the sustainability experts above are as follows:

Speak up – break that climate silence!
Talk to the people you know about climate change and why it’s important to you. If we’re not talking about it, people don’t care. If people don’t care, we’ll never take action.

Get the right people to represent us in government.
How? Vote for climate champions. And do what you can to help them win.

Hold your existing representatives accountable.
Push for climate policies that are in line with what the science demands, not what is “politically feasible”. Bills for carbon pricing and initiatives like the Green New Deal are excellent. (remember we need to cut global emissions in half by 2030 and be net zero by 2050)

Collaborate. Organize with others. Join a movement!
Work with others to bring about real change. Whether it be in your community, company, or country, you have a better chance of making systemic changes when you join forces with other people. As Bill McKibben said, “Movements are, history would indicate, the one way we have of standing up to unjust, entrenched power.”

“My cutting edge is holding alive, emergent and bullshit-free spaces where real evolution is on the table and fear is being transformed into magic.”
~ Dan Palmer, aliveness catalyst and regenerative design educator

“What can you do about climate change”-quiz

→ Yale Climate Connection – 2 October 2022:
What can YOU do about climate change? Take this quiz to find out.
Everyone has a special role in the struggle for a stable climate. What’s yours? The authors offer some questions to help you find it.

→ The Years Project:
17 Climate Change Solutions You Can Do Yourself

→ World Economic Forum:
Three ways CEOs can take sustainability programmes to the next level

→ B-Corp – 27 October 2022:
Creating a Business Climate Action Plan Centered in Justice
“How Companies Can Center Most Affected Communities in Climate Action Work. The Climate Justice Playbook for Business includes questions to guide businesses in their climate justice work.”

The problem with doomism

“Doomism, or “longtermism” that has begun to plague much of our climate fight”, writes Zaria Howell:

“Doomism, which causes widespread fear about the climate crisis rather than inspur hope about change, can be seen through widely circulated maps like this one, which went viral on twitter earlier this week.”

“Like other strains of doomism, longtermism obsesses about the possibility of human extinction rather than admit that climate change is happening right now and the most privileged among us have yet to suffer its impacts,” wrote Currently’s Meg Ruttan in a recent Op-Ed on the issue.



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Friday’s For Future Geelong, 200th Anniversary of Climate ActionFacebook event page



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ACT senator David Pocock speaking in the Senate on 26 October 2022 – on koalas and conservation
How to share: 300 guides to help your community thrive



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Victorian Independents need your vote
Read more and donate



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How to Stay Sane in a Dying World
“This is the story about climate anxiety”
A flood of emotions: climate anxiety and trauma in Australia

“My hope is that we, as a society, can wake up to accept these actions from brave climate activists for what they are – an alarm that jolts us out of the status quo and focuses us on the real emergency at hand: we are killing life on this planet. Nonviolent, civil resistance works. Many of the rights we hold dear were won by previous generations of young people standing up and saying enough. Should we not use those same tactics to redirect our anger and energy toward preserving life – our own and those around us?”

Aileen Getty – on why she funds activist groups like Just Stop Oil



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Burning Questions: Covering Climate Now

This one-hour climate documentary film brings together work by award-winning journalists and explores who is paying the price while world leaders wrangle and corporate interests resist change. The journalists report on climate change around the globe – stories of struggle and resilience from around the world as families from Senegal to Samoa and India to the United States lose everything they care about to drought, fire, and rising seas. Their question is: Will we act in time?

“We just had another warning from the UN that we are essentially on course for the end of the world – it was hardly reported in the media, not heard anyone talking about it on the radio. Please do not moan when people block roads. This broken society deserves everything it gets.”
~ Matthew Todd, on Twitter



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Midnight Oil: We Resist



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Clippings from the Twitter-stream

https://twitter.com/MrMatthewTodd/status/1585746953270284288
https://twitter.com/MrMatthewTodd/status/1585212924741660672
https://twitter.com/zalisteggall/status/1585126085569744898



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Events we have talked about in The Sustainable Hour

Events in Victoria

The following is a collation of Victorian climate change events, activities, seminars, exhibitions, meetings and protests. Most are free, many ask for RSVP (which lets the organising group know how many to expect), some ask for donations to cover expenses, and a few require registration and fees. This calendar is provided as a free service by volunteers of the Victorian Climate Action Network. Information is as accurate as possible, but changes may occur.

Petitions

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List of running petitions where we encourage you to add your name

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Live-streaming on Wednesdays

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The Sustainable Hour is streamed live on the Internet and broadcasted on FM airwaves in the Geelong region every Wednesday from 11am to 12pm (Melbourne time).

» To listen to the program on your computer or phone, click here – or go to www.947thepulse.com where you then click on ‘Listen Live’ on the right.



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Podcast archive

Over 450 hours of sustainable podcasts.

Listen to all of The Sustainable Hour radio shows as well as special Regenerative Hours and Climate Revolution episodes in full length:

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The Sustainable Hour
The Sustainable Hour
Anthony Gleeson, Colin Mockett, Mik Aidt

Sharing solutions that make the climate safer and our cities more liveable