Firebird Journal

Survival and Renewal in the Anthropocene

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The Great Disruption — climate migration

The Great Distruption – Part 1 – Climate Migration This is the first part of a series of posts on what Australian author Paul Gilding, in his 2018 book on the climate catastrophe, has  has called “The Great Disruption.” Nesbit’s thesis, and that of this series, is not that we are necessarily headed toward the […]

A year of darkness; points of light

And when the night is cloudy, there is still a light that shines on me, Shine until tomorrow, let it be — Paul McCartney Greta Thunberg’s smile said it all. The famous young climate activist was getting herself arrested, along with dozens of other protesters, for blocking an entrance to London’s posh Park Street Hotel, […]

Are we entering a climate/economic “doom loop”?

The nearer global heating approaches to the agreed 1.5ºC limit, the greater the risk it poses to the green transition itself —  Institute for Public Policy Research In the context of climate change, “positive feedback loops” are usually thought of as describing physical processes. For example, warming melts solar-reflecting Arctic ice, exposing the dark water […]

A hockey stick that melts ice

“…the hockey stick graph became an icon and [climate change] deniers reckoned if they could smash the icon, the whole concept of global warming would be destroyed…” Michael E. Mann In 2012 Michael E. Mann, one of America’s leading climate scientists, sued several individuals and organizations for making public accusations that he had manipulated climate […]

How much climate chaos can we take?

  I asked ChatterBot, my AI research assistant, if there are ways to predict the behavior of complex systems. CB answered, “…predicting the behavior of complex systems is inherently challenging due to the numerous interacting factors, uncertainties, and nonlinear dynamics involved.” Umm, thanks. I’ll take it from there. So…considering that from, roughly, the beginning of […]

An iconic town, a perfect storm and a warning

I visited Lahaina, back in the day. My girlfriend and I pitched a tent and camped on the beach just south of town, where ginormous hotels now block access to the water. We wandered downtown and bought T-shirts and sampled the local cuisine. We visited the charming Lahaina Heritage Museum, with its priceless artifacts from […]

Our climate’s “new normal” is abnormal

At the rate we’re going this time we’re in now, as filled with catastrophe as it is, will be referred to as “the good old days.” Mary Sweeney commenting in the NY Times We interrupt this broadcast… So there I was, making notes on the longer-term impacts of climate change, when the news started pouring […]

Gaslighting away the planet’s future…and ours

This is the second post in a four-part series on methane. Read posts #1, #3 and #4. “The Partnership (for Energy Progress)…[spent] $2.8 million in 2020 convincing consumers that ‘natural gas is part of a clean energy future…’” — Susie Cagle, climate reporter for The Guardian In the 1970s, when ExxonMobil’s internal assessment showed that […]

Oregon’s (and America’s) coming internal climate refugee crisis

This is the second post in a two-part series on climate migration. Read post #1. “We can’t deter people fleeing for their lives. They will come.” ~ Antonio Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations When my wife and I moved to Oregon from California about 18 years ago, I predicted that we would be among […]