The Parallel Parliament

Glen Pearson

Posts tagged “Environment

Capitalism vs the Environment – Guess Who Wins?

Posted on November 22, 2018

It’s been no secret that one of the great outliers when it comes to climate change has been corporatism specifically and capitalism generally.  Every time something like this is stated – a frequent event – apologists list various examples of where business has made positive and productive progress in sustainability.  Fair enough, but these are exceptions and not the rule. When we speak of capitalism, there is an important distinction because it includes corporations and consumers – a huge difference.  The capitalist culture is one that speaks to the penchant for business to overproduce and consumers to overconsume.  Together, both of these have made the hopes of putting a serious curb in climate change a rather remote one. Recently a group of scientists, put together…

Follow the Food

Posted on May 31, 2018

There are many key components that keep a city functioning, but if you would want to check up on its overall health, it’s helpful to follow how it moves its food around.  Seriously, it’s one of the main ways you can judge just how integrated things are. If healthy local food from the region is largely bypassing a city on its journey to other markets, then you know there’s a problem.  Should there be numerous food deserts that leave significant holes for food resources in neighbourhoods, it has a serious impact on citizens, especially for those in low-income situations or who aren’t mobile. If there are successful urban gardens that experience difficulty in the distribution of their harvests to locations that require them because of…

When Our Global Food System Becomes Broken

Posted on June 21, 2017

As a scientific model it was intriguing, but the results were more troubling than anyone expected. Designed and developed by a team from the Anglia Ruskin University’s Global Sustainability Institute, the model assessed how the world’s food system would look if a business-as-usual approach was taken up until the year 2040. The findings, as presented by institute director Dr. Aled Jones, were almost apocalyptic in scope: “The results show that based on plausible climate trends, and a total failure to change course, the global food supply system would face catastrophic losses, and an unprecedented epidemic of food riots. In this scenario, global society essentially collapses as food production falls permanently short of consumption.” The chief culprit in all this is climate change, and it…

Paris and Avoiding the Human Cost

Posted on December 10, 2015

THOSE MEETING IN THE ONGOING SESSIONS at the climate change summit in Paris have a number of impending tragedies hanging over their heads. They talk in urgent terms about floods, drought, heat, cold, ocean currents, wind directions, and desertification, but the ultimate concern they face in the next few decades is really about people – millions and millions of them. Worst of all, global leaders still don’t know how to handle the coming onslaught. We’d be foolish think this will be a future phenomenon. Already a few million such souls are migrating over the earth in search of sustainability and security. It’s just that their numbers are about to get a whole lot bigger … and troubling. We talked about this before, but it…

After the Voices Are Gone

Posted on July 2, 2015

WE ARE SPENDING THIS WEEK UP in northern Ontario, volunteering at an autism camp for kids, once again learning of our own limitations and the remarkable young lives, with the support of family, that battle autism every day. Yesterday we celebrated Canada Day ensconced in natural wonders – lakes, trees, fish, a riveting lightning storm, and beautiful sunsets. We spent the afternoon at a small town fair, celebrating the holiday. It’s the Canada we envision at its best. But something’s not quite right. Water levels are off. Wildlife is growing confused as it adapts to new patterns. Climate change is not only altering the landscape but also challenging its inhabitants. We all sense it, yet as citizens we can’t just adapt; we must overcome,…

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