A sustainable prize winner? Goldsmith Street | Brussels Blog

A sustainable prize winner? Goldsmith Street

posted by on 25th Oct 2019


“There is a theme running through all this: sustainability.
What’s the best way to be gentle on the planet?”

David Sillito, BBC Newsnight, reporting on the
2019 Stirling Prize from the Royal Institute of British Architects.

The winning entry of the 2019 Stirling Prize is a council housing development in Norwich, Goldsmith Street. The site is a mile from the centre of Norwich.

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Computer models: Feedbacks missing or not?

posted by on 10th Oct 2019

Computer models: Feedbacks missing or not?

Methane emissions from the East Siberian Arctic Sea : Not a worry?

Missing feedbacks

For a decade and more, I’ve been worried that the climate computer had missing feedbacks that made them underestimate the seriousness of climate change [See comments by John Mitchell and Peter Wadhams here]. Three of the missing feedbacks were increased forest fires, melting permafrost emissions, increased decomposition of wetlands.

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A survey for research at Cambridge and Wageningen Universities.

posted by on 8th Oct 2019

We need your help! Share your views on climate change with us.

Please share your views on climate change and reading blogs by filling out this survey. The data will be used for getting to know the readers of climate change blogs.

What’s in it for you?

• You have a chance on winning a $20 gift card of Amazon;
• You will get a sneak preview of the preliminary results;
• You will contribute to research on climate change blogs.

Participation is anonymous, and your answers will be handled confidentially. The data is only used for research purposes.

Your input is highly valued! Please fill out the survey by following this link.

The survey is developed by researchers of Cambridge and Wageningen University.

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Economist Ashoka Mody & Greta Thunberg

posted by on 3rd Oct 2019

Last Saturday, in the middle of the night, I was listening to Business Matters on the BBC World Service. At 18.30 minutes into the programme, there is a piece on the Greta Thunberg’s speech to the UN. She said:

We are in the beginning of a mass extinction and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth. How dare you.

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Climate change and town planning

posted by on 13th Sep 2019

The second of two blogs commenting on recent reports from the Committee on Climate Change.

This encourages the Committee to consider an extended version of town planning.


Climate change and town planning

Professor Sir Ian Boyd has just retired from his position as chief scientist at Defra. In Climate change: Big lifestyle changes ‘needed to cut emissions’, the BBC’s Roger Harrabin reported him as saying:

People must use less transport, eat less red meat and buy fewer clothes if the UK is to virtually halt greenhouse gas emissions by 2050

Sir Ian warned that persuasive political leadership was needed to carry the public through the challenge. One aspect of such leadership would be to inform the public about the severity climate change and the big lifestyle changes ‘needed to cut emissions’. [Note: Public campaigns]

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Carbon footprints & wildfires

posted by on 23rd Aug 2019

The first of two blogs commenting on recent reports from the Committee on Climate Change.

This first questions the official version of climate science that the Committee follows.

The official science of climate change

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Smith’s photo

posted by on 17th Aug 2019
Reduced version of Smith’s photo

This morning, Smith was sitting next to me in the coffee bar.

I was feeling a bit miserable about the state of the world.

Smith’s lovely photo made it a little better.

Smith. Thank you for letting me share it on my blog.

Find the full version on dropbox.

Submission to the Public Inquiry on the 2018 York Local Plan

posted by on 23rd Jul 2019

Submission to the Public Inquiry on the 2018 York Local Plan

I believe this submission on the York Local Plan addresses issues of worldwide importance. Worrying climate feedbacks are mentioned in the accompanying document The York Local Plan: Climate Change. These climate feedbacks are eating into the remaining carbon budgets. Keeping to these budgets is one of the few ways to stop climate change becoming completely out of control. These are described in a video on “cascading tipping points” in the video by Paul Beckwith [1].

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Chasing productivity

posted by on 14th Jul 2019

(A second note on Oxford Economics)

More productivity needed?


Oxford Economics ignored climate change

In How robots change the world, Oxford Economics ignored climate change. Their report contains some interesting conclusions about how robots will destroy jobs by replacing workers while creating other jobs by generating economic growth.

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Models of reducing carbon emissions – and negative emissions?

posted by on 11th Jul 2019

Models of reducing carbon emissions

My previous post discussed a recent report from Oxford Economics,which discussed the replacement of workers by robots. It predicted that on average 1.6 workers will lose their jobs for every industrial robot installed.
However, the introduction of robots will generate economic growth and create jobs:

Our study shows that the current wave of robotization tends to boost productivity and economic growth, generating new employment opportunities at a rate comparable to the pace of job destruction.

My post criticised Oxford Economics because their report ignored climate change: To keep to climate targets steep falls in carbon emissions are necessary. This is very unlikely to be possible with continued economic growth.


Recently a graph in a tweet by Greta Thunberg caught my attention

Figure 1

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