Tuesday, 23 February 2010

After Copenhagen

This is crucial information, from the great people at EcoEquity:


After Copenhagen: On being sadder but wiser, China, and justice as the way forward


It's been a while since Copenhagen, but not too long, perhaps, to send out another reflection on its significance.  So here's After Copenhagen, wherein Tom Athanasiou spends most of his time considering Copenhagen as a turning point for the climate justice movement, and replying to the new vogue for China bashing.  Mark Lynas in particular.

After Copenhagen is at http://www.ecoequity.org/2010/01/after-copenhagen

Note, if you've seen an earlier version of After Copenhagen, that its comparison of US and Chinese pledges has been reviewed and strengthened.  This is definitely not "apples and oranges."  

Also, After Copenhagen has a few things to say about emissions trajectories, both the "G8 style" trajectory that didn't make it into the Copenhagen Accord (a fact we probably shouldn't mourn) and the 350 ppm trajectory that, in Copenhagen, seemed to supplant the 2C temperature target as the mark and measure of true climate stabilization.  For that reason, and apologies if you've already seen it, here's a pointer to the pre-Copenhagen analysis of 350 -- A 350 emergency pathway -- that we (the Greenhouse Development Rights team) did just before Copenhagen.

A 350 ppm emergency pathway is at http://gdrights.org/2009/10/25/a-350-ppm-emergency-pathway

Sunday, 21 February 2010

Greens vs. UKIP on BBC1 on weather vs. climate!

Go 40 minutes in for my debate live on the BBC today with UKIP MEP and Ian Gibson, on the UEA emails controversy, and after that about the prospects for smaller Parties at the General Election... http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00r0srl/The_Politics_Show_East_21_02_2010/  
Let me know how you think I did!
(I was fairly pleased with how it went... ...I think Mr. Agnew may not be quite as pleased... Just a shame that he pipped me by 1% at the Euro-election last June, such that we now have a scientifically-illiterate climate-denier in Brussels representing us, rather than your's truly... Better luck next time, Eastern Region!)

On the BBC1 Politics Show live

I will be on the Politics Show (East) in an hour's time, debating those hacked emails with Stuart Agnew of UKIP in Brussels and Ian Gibson formerly of Labour in Westminster.

Friday, 19 February 2010

Oliver James talk at UEA on Saturday 27 February

I'm going to this; James is very well-tuned into what is sick in our society:
Oliver James
Clinical Psychologist, Best Selling Author and Broadcaster

Why It's A Mad World

How Selfish Capitalist-Induced Affluenza
is Driving the English-Speaking World Crazy
and Destroying the Planet

Saturday 27 February 7.30pm at UEA
(Room CD Annex 0.01, at the foot of Chancellor's Drive)

Entrance free, contributions welcome

Organised by North Norfolk & Norwich Green Parties

More information 01263 761471

Friday, 12 February 2010

Vote for best manifesto ideas

My manifesto idea [Future inhabitants' policy-veto] is part of LeftFootForward's selection which they're putting to the vote.

The list is by no means exhaustive but LFF are trying to get an indicative view of which are the most popular so ' please take our 1-minute survey ' and vote for your favourite three ideas:


The transition to sustainable communities

This is an encouraging development.
[My "A green philosophy of money" is reprinted in volume 4, btw.]

Book Launch from Series Edited by IT Sligo Lecturer Dr. Liam Leonard

Series News: The Transition to Sustainable Communities: News from the Emerald Environment Portfolio

To launch the new Emerald book series Advances in Ecopolitics (first published in December 2009), the series editor, Liam Leonard (IT, Sligo) and regular co-volume editor, John Barry (QUB, Belfast) are hosting a one day workshop at Queen's University Belfast, Monday 29th March.

 'The Transition To Sustainable Communities: Justice, Resilience and Practices of Sustainable Living' seminar will feature international guest speakers and will provide an excellent forum for discussion on key environmental and sustainability issues.

For further details about the event, or to express interest in attending, please email

John Barry: j.barry@qub.ac.uk

The Advances in Ecopolitics Book Series from Emerald Publishing

Advances in Ecopolitics

Series Editor: Liam Leonard, Institute of Technology , Sligo

ISSN: 2041-806X

Series Scope

Advances in Ecopolitics book series presents a broad range of theoretical issues in environmentalism, sustainability and related disciplines, and each volume provides the reader with an array of international contributors who examine a common theme from the world of ecopolitics. Contributors to the Advances in Ecopolitics series present an analysis of the significant environmental issues which have emerged in the era of climate change, sustainable development and green lifestyles, and each contribution explores these salient ecological concepts with an underlying vigour, motivated by a sense that the planet we share with each other is a fragile and finite one. Moreover, as recent events have demonstrated, the socio-economic and political models that were once considered to be sustainable have proven to be the opposite; so the exploration of green alternatives presented in this series acquire a cruciality and for all those who agree that the future is in our hands and that understanding the theoretical concepts surrounding ecological thinking has gained addition significance for our changing planet.

We are always interested in hearing from prospective authors or editors. If you have any ideas or questions or if you wish to be involved with the series, please contact the Series Editor, Liam Leonard: liam_leonard@yahoo.com

For further information about Emerald Books visit


Recent / Forthcoming volumes:


The Transition to Sustainable Living and Practice

Advances in Ecopolitics, volume 4

Edited by:

Liam Leonard, Institute of Technology , Sligo

John Barry, Queen's University, Belfast

ISBN: 978184950641-0

Pub Date: December 2009


The transition to sustainable living and practice provides a series of insights into real alternatives to the current economic malaise, with an examination of key themes such as transition towns, traditional villages, new green financial concepts, the sustainable utopia, co-operative farming, sustainability and activism, ecofeminism, green protectionism, international communities and a green philosophy of money.

Global Ecological Politics

Advances in Ecopolitics, volume 5

Edited by:

Liam Leonard, Institute of Technology , Sligo

John Barry, Queen's University, Belfast

ISBN: 978184950641-0

Pub Date: March 2010


This volume of the Advances in Ecopolitics examines the range of environmental campaigns that are in occurring across the planet. As world leaders attempt to tackle climate change, this edition presents a collection of case studies on global grassroots initiatives and activism in diverse areas.

This extensive array of ecological participation demonstrates that viable green alternatives are available in this current era of legitimation crisis across the formal political and economic sectors. Advances in Ecopolitics 5: Global Ecological Politics presents an important collection of articles for researchers, lecturers and academics in the socio-economic and political sector.

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Norwich UNITARY Go-ahead!

Here's the press statement that we have just put out on this. This confirms the prediction that I made this morning, and it is exciting news! It will mean that on important issues such as the pedestrianisation  Westlegate, where distant County Tories have firmly stood in the City's way (because of their desire to keep driving through the city centre), the City will finally be able to decide its own destiny...:

Norwich Green Party

For immediate release  





Today’s announcement that Norwich City Council is to become a unitary authority, responsible for all local services, has been welcomed by the Green Party.


A unitary council for Norwich will strengthen local democracy, ensuring that decisions for Norwich are taken by councillors elected by Norwich residents, rather than councillors from rural areas. A unitary council is only justified when it brings power closer to the people - that is why a unitary Norfolk would have been disastrous, and why the Green Party Councillors fought hard to avoid such a decision.




--    Rupert Read  Green Party Councillor, Norwich.  http://rupertread.net   [If you have an urgent email for me while I am away from a regular computer, you may wish to try contacting me instead on rupertread+mob@gmail.com] 

Sunday, 7 February 2010

A poll to read-and-weep-over

How tragic that we are apparently becoming a nation of ignorant doubt-addicts, at the very time when strong action is needed to save the future: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8500443.stm

Britain's coming debt crisis

Disturbing news, at www.howestreet.com/articles/index.php?article_id=12227. The foolish strategy of relying on buying and selling gilts to print money, rather than printing it directly into people's hands and into a Green New Deal, is it seems coming home to roost. [ The second graph can also be found, in a slightly different form, at http://ftalphaville.ft.com/blog/2010/01/27/135551/could-uk-money-supply-collapse-post-qe/ ]
[For the philosophical background, cf. my ECO-POLITICS article, "Towards a green philosophy of money".]

Political implications of 'unitary' decision?

Interesting comment by local political commentator 'Bunnco' recently, on the POLITICAL BETTING blog...:

'One of the areas in which the Greens might also do well [as well as in Brighton Pavillion] in is Norwich South , where Charles Clarke is defending a 3500-ish majority. A university seat, the Greens are just behind Labour on the city council and are widely expected to take control of the City Council on May 6th.

But stand-by for one of the most disgraceful gerrymanders since the Great Reform Act of 1832.

Bunnco has previously spoken about the possibility of Local Government Reorganisation [LGR] in Devon, Suffolk & Norfolk. After a tortuous four year process, an announcement is expected today or early next week. If the proposals are not laid before Parliament by Wednesday, they fall. The Conservatives have pledged to reverse such Partisan legislation pushed through in the dying days of the Government.

Labour knows this but the rumour mill is now suggesting that the Cabinet [meeting today in Exeter, also tipped for unitary status] will announce that Norwich City Council will become Unitary and, on the back of it, cancel this May’s council elections to give the local Labour party one more year in the face of certain defeat by the Greens.

The Tories will reverse the reorganisation, you can be sure, but by then it will be too late for the Greens to get their hands on the levers of power.

But if this proves to be the case you can be sure that the local backlash for the General will be such that a third ‘minor party’ seat will be nailed-on and OGH will lose his ‘two-independent’ wager.

Bunnco - Your Man On The Spot'

Monday, 1 February 2010


Went to see THE ROAD last night. It felt very apt travelling there and back by the power of our feet only, in sub-zero temperatures, on strangely deserted and desolate streets... Very moved by it, almost as much as I have previously been by the book... _Everyone_ should see it; it motivates action to stop something like it from happening...
Had a great dream this morning, about being in a room with about 30 self-selecting like-minded people, a few years from now, planning how we were/are going to get ourselves through a possible looming crisis, without making things worse, and (rather) helping to make things better and maybe, just maybe, contribute to the crisis not happening at all (although that felt like a slim hope). Talking collectively through the options: buying a smallholding, or a farm, etc; becoming a company, or (as I argued) a co-op - for it is companies, I piped up and said, who have of course played a key role in getting us into this mess in the first place... The dream was encouraging, strangely reassuring...
1. 2. 3. Rupert's Read: February 2010 4. 12. 15. 18. 19. 20. 21.

Rupert's Read

22. 23. 31. 32.