Kavya Gopal

Asparagopsis hits the market: The first commercial harvest of the methane-reducing seaweed Asparagopsis just took place earlier this month at the Albrolhos Islands off the coast of Western Australia. Seastock is the Australian company behind this feat. They harvested nearly 300kg of naturally growing seaweed off pearl farm lines, which has been spun to remove water, and then packed into locally produced canola oil. This video gives you a walk-through of their process. Each kilogram will sell for $50 to three major customers, including a major dairy producer who will use it in commercial trials. Managing director Tom Puddy said demand for asparagopsis is going strong, with a lot of customers in Australia keen to implement this powerhouse methane-reduction solution in ruminant animals. 

 Benjamin Felser

Protecting the Amazon by burning it down (just a little bit): Afro-Brazilian quilombos in the Ribeira de Iguape Valley are fighting for their rights to work the land. For centuries, people living in quilombos or agricultural communities have practiced a combination of slash and burn and crop rotation which adds carbon and minerals to the soil, while producing food forests. After burning, fields are left for ~15 years to allow the canopy to regenerate. Despite Ribeira’s 80% forest cover, the Brazilian government actively polices quilombo land use, requiring permits which may not be granted until after the growing seasons people needed them for. These farms have formed the Quilombo Farmers Cooperative of the Ribeira Valley to advocate for their rights and share their surplus sweet potatoes, taro, bananas, cabbage and more with their communities.

 Courtney White

The Green List: Since 1964, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has published a Red List of threatened plant and animal species. The list, alas, has grown to 147,000 species with 41,000 at risk for extinction. As we approach the COP15 Biodiversity summit in Canada in December, wildlife populations continue to decline according to a major new study. In response to the crisis, the IUCN created a Green List of nature conservation sites and is developing a global standard tool for successful species recovery. For COP15, the IUCN just published the first ever comprehensive global typology of the earth’s land and water ecosystems. View the typology here. The academic paper supporting it is here. The typology will help with knowledge transfer, restoration success, and natural capital accounting, all with the goal of transforming ecosystem policy and management around the world. Very cool!

 Juliana Birnbaum

World Bank gets a climate shake-up: It’s about time that global financial systems caught up to the fact that we’re living on a very different planet from the one we inhabited when the World Bank model was created at the end of WWII. This week at the institution’s annual meetings in Washington DC, a set of proposals for a fundamental reform of the bank was presented that would increase funding and improve lending terms for initiatives to build climate resilience and transition to clean energy.  The intervention, led by COP26 President Alok Sharma, puts further pressure on the Trump-appointed World Bank chief, who is facing calls to resign over a failure to deliver appropriate financing climate action.  According to Sharma, “the world is recognizing that we cannot tackle the defining challenge of this century with institutions defined by the last.”

 Robert Denney

Green Shipping Corridor between Sweden and Belgium to Open by 2025: At COP26 last year, 22 countries pledged to establish zero-emission shipping corridors. The signatory countries are now beginning to make progress on this promise, including a new green shipping corridor between the Ports of Ghent, Belgium and Gothenburg, Sweden that will be launched by 2025. The Gothenburg-Ghent route is one of the most important shipping routes in Europe, as it connects Scandinavia with Central Europe. Adaptations to the corridor to make it green include, for instance, cheaper port fees for vessels powered by low-emission fuels. The new green shipping corridor will also likely take advantage of the Port of Gothenburg’s existing onshore power supply (OPS), which ships can connect to instead of keeping their engines running while at port. The OPS can not only reduce sulphur dioxide and nitric oxide emissions substantially, but create a much quieter port environment.

 Amy Boyer

Modern animism:  How do we honor and articulate the very real connections we have to landscape? Justine Buck Quijada discusses animism, old and new: "religious practices through which human beings cultivate relationships with more powerful beings that reside in the world around us." The term was coined as a way to envision colonizing societies as more evolved than those they were exploiting, but these practices are getting new interest as people look for a way to relate to the world that isn't predicated on money and extraction. They don't always have to be religious, either, as Quijada notes. They may be legal or artistic practices with powerful (and sometimes tricky) practical consequences. These practices may also be a way for working with our own emotions as we watch our planet changing: for example, unexpressed grief can be paralyzing, but funerals for glaciers and monuments to extinct animals allow us to mourn not merely as individuals but in community, honoring losses and finding a way forward. 

 Nick Obradovich

Talking about climate change: The Yale Program on Climate Change Communication's 2022 survey found that few Americans -- even those worried about climate change -- talk about it regularly with their friends or contacts. Talking about climate change is a critical part of building collective hope for solutions, providing social support for individual actions, and continued awareness of the issue. The focus in climate communications is shifting from trying to shape beliefs to trying to shape awareness, discussion, and action. That said, regularly thinking about and focusing on climate change can have its personal downsides, too. Climate anxiety is often highest in those who most frequently think about climate change. So in working on ways to help those who don't currently talk about climate talk about it more, we should make sure to simultaneously buttress the access to and quality of our mental health care services.

 Kate Furby

An eco-friendlier Halloween: With Halloween just around the corner, it's a good time to evaluate the impact of our plastic decorations and buckets of candy. Rather than cancel Halloween (I could never), The Washington Post has a guide to a more sustainable holiday. TLDR: consider fair trade chocolate, avoid palm oil as an ingredient, try nonplastic decorations. And after your Jack O'Lantern has thrilled the neighbors and lit up your life, compost it! This local farmer's market has an annual pumpkin smash to help make the large hollowed gourds ready for composting. Here's a guide to composting your pumpkin yourself.

Take Action on Nexus
Did You Know that Carbon offsets, which are supposed to help companies and governments reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, have been largely ineffective? 
Less than 5 percent of offsets that have been sold removed carbon dioxide from the air. Find out how carbon onsets go beyond offsets, removing double, triple, or more amounts of greenhouse gases. Onsets can include the regeneration of forests, rivers, farms, and wildlife populations. A quantifiable improvement in women’s lives can be an onset– learn more on our Onsets and Offsets Nexus pages.


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Photo Credits
1st photo: Rasmus Loeth Petersen
2nd photo: Joseph Wasilewski

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