Jul 5, 2022·edited Jul 5, 2022Liked by Rachel Donald

Thank you Rach. You have defined for me the debate in terms of a moral-political response to biophysical facts of overshoot. This includes the political facts of egregious abuse of power at the expense of collective interest. Let power itself be the big issue for public debate, as it is for practitioners of the critical arts.

As student geologist in the late 1960s I learnt that the great advances in science of paleoclimatology were a direct product of the development of "petroleum geology". This field of knowledge underwrote the great petroleum age. It was this science, already very advanced in the boom times of the 1960s, that James Hansen turned to when he transferred his expertise in the atmospheric physics of Venus to our home planet Earth..

The morally unhinged abuse of power is at issue now we know they knew.

Knowledge is power. So the abuse of knowledge and communicative action is central to the consolidation and dangerous abuse of power today.

The story of petroleum geology and its offspring, paleoclimatology, could blow the battleships of bullshit out of the rising water!

Ecocide is the newest and greatest Crime Against Peace, including War Crime, Genocide, Crimes Against Humanity.. The Ecocide is a matter for a special general assembly of the United Nations. Very soon. The distribution of moral culpability must have consequences.

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Hi Rachel,

you have invited Simon Michaux to Planet Critical where he argued that a transformation towards renewables needs way too much energy and materials than its (socially/ecologically) feasible.

Just came out Nafeez Ahmed’s paper* which challenges Michaux’s arguments, for example:

„the idea that renewables have a lower EROI than fossil fuels is a persistent misconception that has plagued numerous other studies that fail to make a full account of these technologies. These mistakes can be found in many places, not least in the famous feature documentary by Michael Moore, Planet of the Humans. More recently, the Geological Survey of Finland published [by Michaux] a paper repeating such errors, as did the journal Energies. ... Models that predict raw materials scarcity based on a one-for-one substitution of petrol vehicles with EVs are wrong.”

It could be interesting to untangle these issues either through a debate or just invite them separately...



* https://clubofrome.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/Earth4All_Deep_Dive_Ahmed.pdf

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Jul 13, 2022·edited Jul 14, 2022

Great. I had a few seconds face to face with JH after his time in 2011 on the stage with a panel in a Vic Uni of Wellington Symposium on Coal. His 2011 tour if NZ was organised by our late great green politics champion, my friend Jeanette Fitzsimons. Her younger parliamentary colleague has just done her hagiography


Back to my encounter with JH. I asked him about the political stress of degrowth. He mentioned Pearl Harbour and the collective "war footing" response to immanent existential threat. His public position was a Climate Tax with cash social dividend incentive. Being an Ametican and a NASA man he saw the belated climate response justified the technofix of Nuclear Power (I disagree). Search "Technofix".

You can get a Canadian view from the great William Rees (Uni of B.C), if you haven't already platformed him? Studying SIA in 2004 I read Rees on Tumbler Ridge - new coal Town by the Rockies. His definition of good governance was memorable: democratic, transparent, accountable, anticipatory, participatory, sensitive, responsive etc.

And say hello to Bronwhn Hayward. She is a very approachable acsdemic and a pro-youth communicator on climate snd the anthropocene. I recall she has standing in European Union including on intergenerational issues like youth "rebels without a cause" (Brixton riots?).

Rebellion - now there's an issue. For theory of Collective Political Violence see The Rebellious Century by Tilley, Tilley & Tilley (1975). I dont know if this great author is still available for interview:


While we follow the money as part of the critical method with social organisation, we step carefully around the partisan pitfall of cynicism. The critical method is not complete without compassion. The Earth Charter needs platforming.

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