Richard Matthews

The Trump Administration is Far Worse for the Planet than Most Realize

A Trump Climate Catastrophe

We need to take stock of where we are if we are to have any chance of getting to where we need to go. After years of slow but steady climate action, the U.S. now has a climate and environment destroying president and legislature. Although Hilary Clinton won the majority of votes, under the collegiate system –which was designed to protect slave owning states–Donald …

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Renewable Energy is Smashing Records and Crushing Fossil Fuels

Fossil fuel market is flat in the face of renewable energy growth

This is another record-breaking year for renewable energy.  In both the developed and developing world renewables are growing at a faster rate than ever before. In 2015, for the first time ever, renewable energy accounted for more than half of new power generation worldwide. Last year, we saw more investment capital being funneled into renewables than ever before and more installed capacity. Currently, renewable …

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Sea Level Rise is Far Worse Than Previously Thought

The world's coastlines with a 6 meter (19+ foot) rise in sea level. NASA

Rising levels of greenhouse gasses are increasing global temperatures and this is causing sea levels to rise. Global warming causes sea levels to rise by melting ice sheets, glaciers, and sea ice; it also causes water to warm and expand. Sea-level rise and resultant flooding may be the greatest challenge facing humanity. Scientists agree that sea levels will rise and much of the most …

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The Importance of Science-Based Emission Reduction Targets

Emissions reductions based on science. Failure is not an option

The importance of science-based emissions reduction targets cannot be overstated. Failure to adhere to these targets will augur a climate catastrophe. The first round of emission reduction targets agreed to at COP21 are laudable, but climate scientists tell us that we must be even more ambitious.  Even if all nations achieve the emissions reduction targets contained in the Paris Climate Agreement, we will fail …

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Eroding Trust in Science: The Implications of Big Sugar’s Lies

Big Sugar lied and manipulated the public about the health impacts of its product. Another example of corporate interests eroding trust in science

A lie remains a lie long after it is told. The subterfuge of industry to serve it’s bottom line at the public’s expense is a crime that warrants public outrage.  We have recently seen evidence of this type of reprehensible behavior from big tobacco, big oil and automakers. In 1994, we discovered that big tobacco was lying about the health impacts of smoking when …

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The Golden Age of Solar Innovation

Proposed space-based "suntower," one of many examples of solar innovation

From efforts that mimic nature like leaves and trees, to arrays that float on water or in space, there has been a wide range of solar energy innovations in 2016.  From tiny solar applications of nanotechnologies to massive space-based arrays, the growth of solar power is being fueled by market forces, including increasing efficiency and decreasing cost. The number of possible innovative applications is …

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How Green Gamification can Change the World

Green gamification can engage people around environmental issues

Electronic gaming and gamification is an enormous and rapidly growing industry that has the potential to help solve the environmental problems we face. Gaming involves specialized applications, whereas ecologically focused gamification transposes game mechanics and game design techniques to engage a wide audience and motivate people to act. Games and gamification can also disseminate critical information focused on climate, the environment, and sustainability. The …

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