Posts Tagged ‘Thomas Lovejoy’
I’m an independent journalist who covers international environmental issues in the public interest.
My work has been published in publications around the world including National Geographic, The Guardian (UK), Sunday Times, New Scientist, Al Jazeera, Earth Island Journal, The Toronto Star, AlterNet, Common Dreams, and Straight Goods News.
I’m also the senior science and environment correspondent at IPS, Inter Press Service News Agency the world’s largest not-for-profit news agency.
I am the 2012 co-winner of the Prince Albert/United Nations Global Prize for Climate Change. You can read much of that coverage on this site.
Multiple environmental crisis represent “the greatest challenge in the history of our species”
– Thomas Lovejoy, professor, George Mason University, former chief scientist of the World Bank
Despite the importance of environmental issues, media have slashed their coverage of environmental issues. It is impossible to make a living as a freelance environmental journalist.
Swiss journalist Daniel Wermus in 2010 article: “Stephen Leahy, a Canadian, and one of the world’s best-known investigative reporters on environmental issues, has launched a challenge:
if corporations won’t pay for the news, then it is up to communities and the public to fill the gap.“
Since for-profit corporate media won’t pay for environmental journalism in the public interest then I am hoping people will.
In 2009 I launched Community Supported Environmental Journalism. In exchange for producing articles about important issues that millions will read*, I am asking people to provide some support. Just $10 a month helps guarantee informative and useful articles like the ones on this site will continue to be written. All supporters receive a personal, one-page weekly newsletter. Without your support I can’t work for all of us — Stephen
*Yes, millions of readers. When I write an article for IPS it is used in hundreds of newspapers and magazines in different languages around the world. That’s great but unfortunately I only get paid $175 even if it took a week to research and write the article. Many of my articles are also reprinted by news websites such as Reuters AlertNet, the Guardian, Al Jazeera, AlterNet, Common Dreams, Truthout, InfoSud, Straightgoods.com and others. None of these pay me for this reuse.
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– E. Ann Clark, Associate Professor, University of Guelph
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World’s Forests Losing Their Green. Billions of tonnes of CO2 Released
By Stephen Leahy
UXBRIDGE, Canada, Feb 3, 2011 (IPS)
Last year’s severe drought in the Amazon will pump billions of tonnes of additional carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere, a new report has found.
Researchers calculate that millions of trees died in 2010, which means the Amazon is soaking up much less CO2 from the atmosphere, and those dead trees will now release all the carbon they’ve accumulated over 300 or more years.
The widespread 2010 drought follows a similar drought in 2005 which itself will put an additional five billion tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere, Simon Lewis of University of Leeds in the UK and colleagues calculate in a study published Thursday in Science. The United States emitted 5.4 billion tonnes of CO2 from fossil fuel use in 2009.
The two droughts will end up adding an estimated 13 billion tonnes of additional CO2 – equivalent to combined emissions in 2009 from China and the U.S. – and likely accelerating global warming.
“New growth in the region will not offset those releases,” Lewis told IPS.
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After the 2005 drought, Lewis and Brazilian scientist Paulo Brando from the Amazon Environmental Research Institute (IPAM) led teams of researchers on the ground to assess the impacts. They determined that only a few trees died per hectare, and so while the forest canopy cover looked relatively unchanged, there had been a significant change in the forest’s carbon balance. Read the rest of this entry »
We Can Live Without Oil
“It was a disaster that was going to happen, but business and government simply pretended it was not going to happen.”
[Update: Why the BP spill cannot be cleaned up]
By Stephen Leahy*
UXBRIDGE, Canada, May 10, 2010 (Tierramérica)
The policies and deals that contributed to the massive oil spill under way in the Gulf of Mexico are also jeopardising the Earth’s vital biological infrastructure, according to the Global Biodiversity Outlook 3, published Monday.
The British Petroleum oil spill of 5,000 barrels a day in the Gulf of Mexico, which began Apr. 20 when an explosion caused a rupture at the Deepwater Horizon oil rig, will have devastating consequences for marine life and coastal ecosystems for decades, experts say.
Similar business and policy decisions, multiplied thousands times over the last hundred years, have put the biological infrastructure that supports life in jeopardy, according to the Global Biodiversity Outlook 3 (GBO3) report, issued May 10 by the Convention on Biological Diversity.
The report is the most current assessment of the state of the planet’s biodiversity, the living organisms that provide us with health, wealth, food, fuel and other vital services.
In this study, “you can clearly see the outlines of what could be the sixth great extinction event of all life on Earth,” said Thomas Lovejoy, biodiversity chair at the Washington DC-based Heinz Centre for Science, Economics and the Environment, and chief biodiversity adviser to the president of the World Bank. Read the rest of this entry »
PARIS, Feb 2, 2010 (Tierramérica)
The Amazon jungle “is very close to a tipping point,” and if destruction continues, it could shrink to one third of its original size in just 65 years, warns Thomas Lovejoy, world-renowned tropical biologist.
[UPDATE Sept 6'10: The Amazon River is at its lowest level in 40 years -- in 2005 devastating dry spell damaged vast swaths of South American rainforest Amazon May Be Headed For Another Bad Drought]]
Climate change, deforestation and fire are the drivers of this potential Amazonian apocalypse, according to Lovejoy, biodiversity chair at the Washington DC-based Heinz Centre for Science, Economics and the Environment, and chief biodiversity adviser to the president of the World Bank.
Lovejoy laid out the scenario for participants at the Biodiversity Science Policy Conference in Paris last week, sponsored by UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation), and marking the beginning of the U.N.’s International Year of Biodiversity.
“The World Bank released a study that finally put the impacts of climate change, deforestation and fires together. The tipping point for the Amazon is 20 percent deforestation,” and that is “a scary result,” Lovejoy told Tierramérica in an interview.
The study, “Assessment of the Risk of Amazon Dieback,” released Jan. 22, drew on the expertise of several international research institutions, including Japan’s Meteorological Research Institute, Britain’s Exeter University, Brazil’s Centre for Weather Forecasting and Climate Change (CPET/INPE), Germany’s Potsdam Institute and Earth3000.
The results and analysis were reviewed by an international blue-ribbon panel of scientists. Read the rest of this entry »