Warm beer, planet-friendly pets and the climate cost of AI

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The West Antarctic ice shelf is officially doomed. Our chances of keeping global heating under 1.5 degrees are growing dim, too. Where does this leave us?

In this Landscape News round-up, we scour the depths of this month’s climate stories for some hope amid the doom and gloom. From floating cities to artificial reefs, here are some of your top headlines from October.

GLF Nairobi
GLF Nairobi 2023: A New Vision for Earth gathered over 7,000 participants online and in Nairobi, Kenya. GLF

This month on Landscape News

From land rights to climate finance and new narratives, here are some of the new visions we forged with the 7,000+ participants at GLF Nairobi 2023 – both for Africa and for a planet in crisis.

Among the 248 speakers, here are eight of our favorites who rejoined us after having shared their wisdom over the course of the GLF’s 10-year history.

We’re also excited to share the three winning stories from the 2023 African Youth Storytelling Contest, as well as six resources to help you get informed about natural climate remedies.

Now, as we look ahead to COP28 in Dubai, here’s our latest feature on how the U.A.E.’s date industry is adapting to hotter times.

What we’re reading

Beer
The climate crisis is making beer less hoppy and more expensive. BENCE BOROS, Unsplash

Climate

As we were saying: it’s now unlikely that we can prevent the West Antarctic ice shelf from continuing to melt for the rest of this century.

The outlook is a bit brighter for the Greenland ice sheet, which is close to a tipping point but could still be brought back under control if we act quickly enough.

Speaking of tipping points, researchers have named six ‘risk tipping points’ that will affect our ability to cope with future climate disasters.

So far, this year has been 1.4 degrees Celsius hotter than pre-industrial times. Carbon emissions would have to reach net zero by 2034 to give us a good chance of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees.

The climate crisis is even ruining the taste of beer. Expect to shell out more for an increasingly watered-down pint.

Dog
Pets can have a significant carbon footprint, but there are many ways to reduce it. Milli, Unsplash

People

With less than a month to go until COP28 kicks off, migrant workers are braving temperatures of up to 42 degrees Celsius to get the conference venue ready.

Despite the growing risks, developers are continuing to build on floodplains. South Korea, meanwhile, is building a floating city that will eventually house up to 100,000 people.

As a historic drought grips the southwestern U.S., this is how young Navajos are adapting tradition to a new reality.

Packaging from a U.K. supermarket has been found dumped in a low-income neighborhood of Myanmar’s largest city, Yangon. How did it get there?

And now, one for the pet owners: here are some ways to reduce the climate impact of your pets.

Lassen Volcanic National Park
California’s Lassen Volcanic National Park is slowly recovering from a devastating fire in 2021. Patrick Bösiger, Unsplash

Planet

We already know that the Amazon rainforest is on the brink of collapse. Now, a new study suggests that could alter the South American monsoon, destabilizing the climate across the continent.

Countries representing the world’s three largest rainforests have agreed to work together to tackle deforestation and protect biodiversity, but without forming an official alliance.

Is there finally light at the end of the bird flu tunnel? Some wild birds have developed immunity to the disease that has killed millions of birds over the past two years.

Two years on from California’s biggest-ever fire, Lassen Volcanic National Park is recovering – and offers valuable lessons on how to manage fire across landscapes.

Oil platform
Oil platforms, like this one near Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, host a surprising amount of biodiversity. Bernardo Ferrari, Unsplash

Business

What might the AI revolution mean for the climate? One study suggests AI could emit as much carbon as the Netherlands by 2027.

Lithium mining is booming in Argentina and the southwestern U.S., but Indigenous communities aren’t happy about it happening on their lands.

Kenya is set to host Africa’s first carbon removal plant, but the project is already raising concerns over climate justice and greenwashing (more on that here).

Should we tear down old oil platforms? Many have become artificial reefs and host a wealth of marine life, scientists warn.

And with farmland at a premium, Singapore is using its skyscrapers to feed its citizens.

Doctors' Rebellion
Authorities across Europe are increasingly cracking down on climate protesters. Alisdare Hickson, Flickr

Policy

Last year at COP27, countries agreed to create a Loss and Damage Fund. Now, they can’t agree how to implement it. (Update: negotiators have made a breakthrough, though not everyone is happy.)

Likewise, the Green Climate Fund recently missed its target of raising USD 10 billion to help poorer countries adapt to the climate crisis.

From mass arrests to draconian new laws, European governments are cracking down hard on climate protesters, human rights advocates say.

A new California law requires large businesses based in the state to disclose their emissions. This will most notably affect tech mammoths Apple, Alphabet and Meta, as well as oil giant Chevron.

Article tags

biodiversitybusinessclimate changepolicy

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