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Author: TheConversation

Carbon Budget: Why reducing deforestation is vital to protecting biodiversity and slowing climate change

By Tom Pugh, Reader in Biosphere-Atmosphere Exchange, University of Birmingham and Senior Lecturer, Lund University Humanity injects an almost incomprehensible 42 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide CO₂ into the atmosphere every year. The majority of this comes from burning fossil fuels, but a substantial portion, about 16%, arises from how we use the land. Most of these land-use emissions are caused by deforestation, particularly in the tropics. In order to slow climate change, the global community needs to reduce this 42 billion tons of emissions to net zero, a situation where any remaining emissions are balanced by uptake elsewhere....

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How the government can encourage the public to use clean energy without subsidizing just richer people

By Eric Hittinger, Associate Professor of Public Policy, Rochester Institute of Technology, Eric Williams, Professor of Sustainability, Rochester Institute of Technology, Qing Miao, Associate Professor of Public Policy, Rochester Institute of Technology, and Tiruwork B. Tibebu, Ph.D. Student, Rochester Institute of Technology The planet is heating up as greenhouse gas emissions rise, contributing to extreme heat waves and once-unimaginable flooding. Yet despite the risks, countries’ policies are not on track to keep global warming in check. The problem isn’t a lack of technology. The International Energy Agency recently released a detailed analysis of the clean energy technology needed to...

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Lessons Unlearned: Schools were failing to adequately serve students of color even before COVID

By Adriana Villavicencio, Assistant Professor of Education, University of California, Irvine National test results released in September 2022 show unprecedented losses in math and reading scores since the pandemic disrupted schooling for millions of children. In response, educational leaders and policymakers across the country are eager to reverse these trends and catch these students back up to where they would have been. But this renewed concern seems to overlook a crucial fact: Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, many schools were failing to adequately serve children of color. As a scholar of racial equity in K-12 education, I see an...

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Targeting civilian power supply earns Russia the “state sponsor of terror” title as winter’s chill begins to bite

By Jonathan Este, Associate Editor, International Affairs Editor Large areas of Ukraine, including the capital, are now without power much of the time. And still Moscow persists with its strategy of targeting Ukraine’s power supply. It’s hard to argue – as the Kremlin continues to insist – that these are military targets. On November 23 a two-day old baby was killed when what have been reported to be Russian missiles hit a maternity ward in Zaporizhzhia. The region is home to Europe’s largest nuclear power plant and has come under particularly bombardment recently. The plant itself has been under...

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Ukraine United: Following his failed military strategy Putin’s war of false narratives is also crumbling

By Ronald Suny, Professor of History and Political Science, University of Michigan People understand the world, where we came from, how we got here, and where we are likely to go because of the stories we tell about ourselves and others. The very political and social environments in which we are embedded are also rooted in these stories and these narratives. And so it is with the current conflict in Ukraine. As the months of fighting have progressed, so too have the narratives that underpin the actions of the two sides. It is as if both Russia and Ukraine...

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Could Russia collapse? It may be unthinkable but nobody predicted the end of the USSR either

By Matthew Sussex, Fellow, Strategic and Defence Studies Centre, Australian National University Among the many questions asked about Russia’s disastrous war against Ukraine, one of them is posed only very rarely: can Russia survive what seems increasingly likely to be a humiliating defeat at the hands of its smaller neighbor? On the face of it, the prospect seems almost absurd. Vladimir Putin may have been weakened by a trio of crucial miscalculations – about Russian military strength, Ukrainian resolve, and Western unity – but there’s no evidence yet that he’s on the verge of losing his grip on power,...

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