Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The voice of the natural world

I have this book on order. Can't wait. Are there places we can still go to and be still, listen to creation and give thanks to God for this hymn of praise? Book review to follow.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Books - print or ebook?

Living in a fully consistent manner is difficult, and as soon as you come out as wanting to be environmentally aware and sustainable you will face criticism. I admit I don't do everything maybe a I should. So when I shared this image recently elsewhere, it wasn't so much the questioning of whether paper is more environmentally sensitive but the 'and you call yourself an environmentalist' statement. C'est la vie. However, a quick web search yielded this article which points out the minimal CO2 cost of download but then the ereaders themselves and the build in obsolescence. Perhaps using a device that has more general uses (like a tablet) will help, but only if you use it for as long as you can rather than chasing the latest novel.

And for myself, yes using libraries saves CO2 and money, and second hand is to be preferred to new when possible, buying local over the faster O/S services. Life is full of difficulties and temptations. That said, let's be encouraging of those who seek to be green and non-aggressive to those who don't

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Christians & Creation Care: Melbourne meeting Aug 13

We believe God created the world good—and as his children, we have a responsibility to care for creation. A Rocha was founded in Portugal and focuses on environmental education, research and practical environmental action. Although many countries have established A Rocha, it has not yet been launched in Australia.

If care for creation is of interest ‐ please join us on Tuesday August 13 at 7.30pm at St. Judes’ Church in Carlton to discuss the vision for a group representing Christians in conservation in Australia,(potentially an A Rocha chapter) and also consider the weekend of September 28/29 for a weekend of practical environmental action at ‘Watchbox Valley’ (the photo above) an 1160 acre conservation focused farm 90km north on Melbourne in Central Victoria. For more information contact:

Mick Pope (
Ian Barns (
Paul Dettmann (

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Vulnerability to climate change

I've been doing the Coursea MOOC Climate Literacy for a few weeks now, it is seemed time to share something of what I've been learning. The basic science has been mostly old for me since I've taught a course on this for some time. However, now we have moved on to impacts I'm starting to pick up on new ideas.

This diagram summarises the ideas behind systems becoming vulnerable to climate change impacts.

Sensitivity is how a system might be at risk to a hazard. Say for example your house is not on stilts. It is therefore sensitive to flooding. However, if you are not near a coast or in a flood plain, then your exposure is low. The product of sensitivity and exposure leads to some risk of potential impacts, in this case of flooding events.

Adaptive capacity is that ability or potential of a system to respond successfully to climate variability and change. In human systems this includes financial coping mechanisms, the role of education and awareness and trust and collaboration in communities. The first factor shows us why the developing world stands to be more vulnerable in many ways than the developed world. Adaptive capacity is a potential in that while we might be able to do something, we might not be willing to do it. Lack of political will is stymieing our ability to avoid a 2 C world!

All of this leads to a systems vulnerability to climate change. Some systems may prove resilient to such changes while others may cross tipping points and collapse.