The John James Newsletter No. 26

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The John James Newsletter 26

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John James

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The John James Newsletter 26

6 November 2014. 

Hope is the companion of power, and the mother of success; for whosoever hopes has within him the gift of miracles. – Samuel Smiles


UN panel warns opportunity to stop climate change fading fast

This requires “substantial” cuts to greenhouse gas emissions over the next few decades, and “near zero” emissions by the end of the century.Two degrees warming is considered a threshold beyond which the impacts of climate change become much worse. On current emission trends, the world would warm by 4 degrees by 2100 – and keep getting warmer thereafter.

A Gunpowder Plot Against Democracy 

This bill of rights for corporations will blow up the sovereignty of parliaments. The TTIP treaty would allow corporations to sue governments before an arbitration panel composed of corporate lawyers, at which other people have no representation, and which is not subject to judicial review. So outrageous is this arrangement that even the Economist, usually the champion of corporate power and trade treaties, has now come out against it as “a way to let multinational companies get rich at the expense of ordinary people”.


Climate Depression Is For Real. Just Ask A Scientist

It’s only natural then that many climate scientists and activists often feel an extreme pressure to keep their emotions in check. Part of being on the front line means being outspoken and passionate about the cause, the personal toll of the work goes largely undiscussed. “You don’t just start talking about unbelievably fast sea-level rise at a cocktail party at a friend’s house. So having to deny the emotional need to talk about what’s on your mind is a burden. Nobody talks about how it makes them feel personally.”

Gaza isn’t just a physical wreck: the psychological damage is worse.

Gaza feels like the Day of Judgement. Houses are as squashed and scattered as paper cups. A water tower is torn up close to the ground like a stalk of corn. Mosques, schools and factories are blasted, useless shells. Olive trees that were almost ready to yield their fruit are reduced to kindling. It goes on, block after block. Altogether 20,000 homes are destroyed and uninhabitable, 39,000 people are still living in UN shelters, and perhaps 100,000 more are homeless, crowded in with relatives. Building materials promised by the UN and international donors are stalled or unavailable.

Gaza cut off: Israel closes border crossings indefinitely

Israel has said it’s shutting the only two operating Gaza border crossings indefinitely. This comes a day after a projectile hit Israel from the strip, with no damage. Border closures have now isolated Gaza completely.

CEFC in discussions on 30 new projects worth $3bn

The Clean Energy Finance Corporation shows no sign of packing its bags as the Abbott government would wish. The Corporation reports “active discussions” with developers of more than 30 new projects with a total value of more than $3 billion. This is on top of the $931 million it has already invested in projects worth a total of $3.2 billion.

Opioid wars

The US consumes more than 80 percent of the global supply of opioids, and overdoses from prescription opioid drugs kill nearly 17,000 Americans every year, which is one overdose death every 30 minutes.

Entire villages disappeared: Ebola deaths in Sierra Leone ‘underreported’ 

Ebola’s toll on Sierra Leone is much greater than previously thought, with entire villages killed off by the virus. This means up to 20,000 people could have succumbed to the disease by now.

Fracking Wells Abandoned in Boom/Bust Cycle. Who Will Pay to Cap Them?

The companies that once operated the wells have all but vanished into the prairie, many seeking bankruptcy protection and unable to pay the cost of reclaiming the land they leased.

Renewable Energy Can Cost 70% Less Than Diesel Power At Mining Sites

Electricity from solar and wind power can cost up to 70% less than when it is generated by diesel power at mining sites, especially for sites that are located remotely.

Government-controlled Syria defiant amid war 

Rebels hold some suburbs in the countryside around Damascus and parts of the northwest. The extremist Islamic State group has imposed its rule over territory encompassing a third of both Syria and neighbouring Iraq.

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