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Source: (consider it) Thread: Pope Francis on climate change
Alan Cresswell

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# 31

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The biggest forms of unsustainability are:
1. Energy - in particular reliance on fossil fuels (finite resource)
2. Water - just look at California for unsustainable water exploitation by the rich
3. Food - we're reliant on imported foods, which is a very fragile position in the event of general global social breakdown
4. Basically every raw material - metals, plastics, chemical feed stock for pharmaceuticals ... all finite resources, most dependent on global trade
5. Loads of other stuff

Yes, the rich will be able to buy themselves out of the catastrophe. But, as the world goes to hell in a handbasket, the costs of doing so will escalate and the number of people who can afford to do that will diminish. Meanwhile those at the bottom of the pile will either starve, or rise up to bring everything crashing down.

Of course, those who are currently wealthy will be OK, and probably so will their children. Grand children and great grandchildren are more vulnerable.

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lowlands_boy
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But will it motivate people enough to change?

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Alan Cresswell

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On current evidence, not enough people, not the right people, and not enough action by those who are motivated to do something.

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itsarumdo
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I'd like to see the UK Govt drop DAB and revert to analogue as a useful and relevant gesture of goodwill. Less manufacturing resources & pollution, less transmission and receiver power usage. It's not a big thing, and there is a certain degree of humble pie required, but not so much that it is impossible.

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Alan Cresswell

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There are advantages of DAB over analogue. Probably the biggest is transmission power, at about 10% the power needed for FM delivering more stations on each frequency and requiring less repeater stations. That is a substantial cut in energy use.

Domestic DAB radios do tend to be more power hungry than FM radios. Part of that is that there are very few no-frills versions, they need computing resource to decode the signals so you can't have a manual tuner so you should compare power consumption with comparable digital tuned FM radios. The biggest issue is the ubiquitous "stand by" that is built in basically all electronic gadgets.

Besides, as far as I know there's no imminent end to FM radio. It's been mentioned repeatedly over at least the last 5 years, but seems no closer now ... and won't get closer as long as large quantities of FM radios are being sold (and, those in new cars are going to be one of the biggest problems since upgrading from analogue to digital for automotive systems is particularly hard, and in the car is probably one of the most common places to listen to the radio).

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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by Alan Cresswell:
Part of that is that there are very few no-frills versions, they need computing resource to decode the signals so you can't have a manual tuner so you should compare power consumption with comparable digital tuned FM radios.

This, IMHO, is nonsense. You're telling me that it's good value to take the bus for a journey I could cycle, because it's not fair to compare the bus to cycling, so I should compare it to driving my car.
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Alan Cresswell

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No, I'm saying the headline "DAB radios use more than 4x the power of FM radios" need to be investigated more thoroughly. The computing power to decode the digital signals will inevitably need more power than the much simpler circuits needed to convert FM to sound. But, it's additional features of DAB radios - the ability to pause and rewind broadcasts, displays showing information about the station being listened to and other data streamed with the broadcast, etc - that account for a large portion of the headline figures.

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Arethosemyfeet
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There's also the fact that, I presume, analogue signals won't be turned off until their coverage can be replaced with DAB. We still can't get DAB out here.
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Alan Cresswell

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Last I heard, the government would make a statement on when they would switch of FM at the end of 2016. But, before then there will need to be nationwide DAB coverage, and there would need to be a phase out of FM receivers as well - which would start by stopping sales. I doubt there would be an announcement in 18 months, and even if there was it'll be at least 10 years before they start turning off FM.

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itsarumdo
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It's not that complicated - I have a wind-up radio, and the analogue channels will play for a little over 30 mins on one charge, but the DAB (if I can receive DAB channels) will only play for about 5 mins - I was being generous on the factor of 4 (unless there is also an issue of battery voltage).

Then add all the Analogue radios that were supposed to be replaced by DAB when it becomes universally available and the number of DAB radios that will have to be manufactured to replace them. The advantage is that there is more functionality, but it's functionality that is unnecessary. It's just another aspect of the "We Do It Because We Can" attitude rather than thinking whether it there is an overall benefit. That attitude creates dodgy areas of science - like human cloning - but at a science level it's relatively easy to contain. Once it moves from science/tech capacity to a consumer level, it translates into "We Do It Because Someone Can Make Lots Of Money" and it's much harder to contain because we have no consensual ethical basis for containing it. The whole of the field of consumer technology is shot through with this moral ambiguity in the name of profit, and you just iterated the usual response - we worship the clay god of increased functionality. The fact that this debacle is also sponsored by our government is appalling. I contacted both FoE and Greenpeace and a few other ®environmental organisations when this project first got off the ground, and none of them would consider a campaign against it - I guess for fear of appearing to be Luddites.

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lowlands_boy
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There's a chicken and egg problem over DAB take up. Poor signal reception even in some "enabled" areas leaves you with the characteristic gurgling sound. We've had a couple of digital radios as presents, but the reception for the stations we like to listen to suck.

There's also the problem of some stations you might like to listen to simply not being on a DAB offering in your area, or not being on DAB at all.

So without the stations (or with poor reception ) then people don't buy more sets, so the incentive to improve the reach doesn't come.

On the other hand, stations like BBC 6 music have never been on fm and are digital only. For domestic use, I think digital has overtaken analogue as a way of listening to radio, albeit that that means via radio being broadcast on the tv frequencies or over Internet in some cases.

A few years ago it was popular for mobile phones to offer FM radio. Nowadays although the chip to do that is included , the FM functionality is disabled as networks and providers want to push streaming media services as they can charge for that.

Internet based radio will probably be king one day, maybe without DAB ever becoming king on its own first.

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mr cheesy
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Alan, is there any way to compare internet radio streaming with DAB (in terms of energy use)? My impression is that DAB is in danger of being superseded by internet radio anyway.. but I don't remember seeing comparative energy usage calculations as you've described above.

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itsarumdo
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The crack on that is whether you would have your computer on only to listen to the radio

Living out in the sticks, if everyone tried to stream TV and radio with the current "broadband" we would be lucky to share the BBC screen test card between us all.

Also, whilst most people live in big towns at the moment, that certainly isn't true for everyone, and for maybe 5-10% of the population there is a LOT of work to do to upgrade broadband infrastructure just to have fast access. Upgrading that to the point that everyone could also stream their TV and radio is - at the moment something of a fantasy.

What bothers me about this route is that we (me and my partner) already have found that we sleep a lot better in our house if we switch off all the internet and computers. If the solution to rural broadband is local wifi using some kind of mobile phone mast (we have a scheme in Norfolk using church towers), then all that never gets switched off. And anyone who is sensitive to electrical activity will have no way of turning it off, and will just has to live with the increased physiological stress that is caused by it. So I personally don't see internet streaming as a positive solution - both in power usage terms and in terms of being human friendly

In fact, it rails somewhat against the spirit of Pope Francis' statement. I started with a simple FACT that DAB power usage is too high plus the need for manufacture of millions of DAB receivers to replace perfectly good analogue receivers is just not a good environmental decision. And it would be a simple move in the right direction for our government to get hold of it, acknowledge the issue, and just stop the rollout. Sidestepping and talking about internet streaming instead is just another "toys of the boys" fantasy approach more worthy of Top Gear. This is a mindset that has to be dropped - it's a toddler let loose in a toy store kind of bottomless hole of craving for more and more tech fixes for problems that only exist if we think of what tech we might be able to have in our living rooms. When everything is added up, does it really add something of value to the quality of life? No.

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Alan Cresswell

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[response to mr cheesy's question]

No idea. I had to go look up some figures from BBC trials of DAB to get the broadcast power. I know that each 3G and 4G broadcast tower is much lower in power, but there are orders of magnitude more of them. And, at the device end there is a much greater power consumption as they're bidirectional so the device transmits as well as receives. Of course, internet streaming over wire is another set of questions about efficiency - and, then if you then dump that through a wi-fi you're reintroducing a broadcast efficiency term.

My guess is that so long as the 3G/4G/wired connection exists streaming radio is a very small additional power consumption on top of the power needed just to keep the system up and running. And, of course, many people will find the convenience of having their radio built into an existing device attractive - when in Japan I stream radio through my laptop, the only other option I have is FM radio on my phone (which doesn't give me British radio programming).

[ 25. June 2015, 09:41: Message edited by: Alan Cresswell ]

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by itsarumdo:
[QB] The crack on that is whether you would have your computer on only to listen to the radio

Living out in the sticks, if everyone tried to stream TV and radio with the current "broadband" we would be lucky to share the BBC screen test card between us all.


OK, yes this is an issue, although FM radio reception is also bad in some areas. And anyway, it is possible that in the future internet broadcasts could be a lot easier.

The outernet is experimenting with bouncing one-way internet (ie like radio you just receive) from tiny satellites, it is not beyond the bounds of possibility that in the future we could all get broadcasts from these.

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arse

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lowlands_boy
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quote:
Originally posted by itsarumdo:
The crack on that is whether you would have your computer on only to listen to the radio

Living out in the sticks, if everyone tried to stream TV and radio with the current "broadband" we would be lucky to share the BBC screen test card between us all.

Also, whilst most people live in big towns at the moment, that certainly isn't true for everyone, and for maybe 5-10% of the population there is a LOT of work to do to upgrade broadband infrastructure just to have fast access. Upgrading that to the point that everyone could also stream their TV and radio is - at the moment something of a fantasy.

What bothers me about this route is that we (me and my partner) already have found that we sleep a lot better in our house if we switch off all the internet and computers. If the solution to rural broadband is local wifi using some kind of mobile phone mast (we have a scheme in Norfolk using church towers), then all that never gets switched off. And anyone who is sensitive to electrical activity will have no way of turning it off, and will just has to live with the increased physiological stress that is caused by it. So I personally don't see internet streaming as a positive solution - both in power usage terms and in terms of being human friendly

In fact, it rails somewhat against the spirit of Pope Francis' statement. I started with a simple FACT that DAB power usage is too high plus the need for manufacture of millions of DAB receivers to replace perfectly good analogue receivers is just not a good environmental decision. And it would be a simple move in the right direction for our government to get hold of it, acknowledge the issue, and just stop the rollout. Sidestepping and talking about internet streaming instead is just another "toys of the boys" fantasy approach more worthy of Top Gear. This is a mindset that has to be dropped - it's a toddler let loose in a toy store kind of bottomless hole of craving for more and more tech fixes for problems that only exist if we think of what tech we might be able to have in our living rooms. When everything is added up, does it really add something of value to the quality of life? No.

But would you be prepared to sacrifice better internet access in order to preserve your low carbon approach? I'm fortunate to live in an area where there is good broadband and I've worked from home for ten years. Out of the question to do it with rubbish "broadband", but has the existence of fast broadband for me offset all the travel etc I'd do otherwise? Maybe....

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itsarumdo
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# 18174

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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
quote:
Originally posted by itsarumdo:
[QB] The crack on that is whether you would have your computer on only to listen to the radio

Living out in the sticks, if everyone tried to stream TV and radio with the current "broadband" we would be lucky to share the BBC screen test card between us all.


OK, yes this is an issue, although FM radio reception is also bad in some areas. And anyway, it is possible that in the future internet broadcasts could be a lot easier.

The outernet is experimenting with bouncing one-way internet (ie like radio you just receive) from tiny satellites, it is not beyond the bounds of possibility that in the future we could all get broadcasts from these.

Thanks Mr Cheesy :-)

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itsarumdo
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# 18174

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quote:
Originally posted by lowlands_boy:
quote:
Originally posted by itsarumdo:
The crack on that is whether you would have your computer on only to listen to the radio

Living out in the sticks, if everyone tried to stream TV and radio with the current "broadband" we would be lucky to share the BBC screen test card between us all.

Also, whilst most people live in big towns at the moment, that certainly isn't true for everyone, and for maybe 5-10% of the population there is a LOT of work to do to upgrade broadband infrastructure just to have fast access. Upgrading that to the point that everyone could also stream their TV and radio is - at the moment something of a fantasy.

What bothers me about this route is that we (me and my partner) already have found that we sleep a lot better in our house if we switch off all the internet and computers. If the solution to rural broadband is local wifi using some kind of mobile phone mast (we have a scheme in Norfolk using church towers), then all that never gets switched off. And anyone who is sensitive to electrical activity will have no way of turning it off, and will just has to live with the increased physiological stress that is caused by it. So I personally don't see internet streaming as a positive solution - both in power usage terms and in terms of being human friendly

In fact, it rails somewhat against the spirit of Pope Francis' statement. I started with a simple FACT that DAB power usage is too high plus the need for manufacture of millions of DAB receivers to replace perfectly good analogue receivers is just not a good environmental decision. And it would be a simple move in the right direction for our government to get hold of it, acknowledge the issue, and just stop the rollout. Sidestepping and talking about internet streaming instead is just another "toys of the boys" fantasy approach more worthy of Top Gear. This is a mindset that has to be dropped - it's a toddler let loose in a toy store kind of bottomless hole of craving for more and more tech fixes for problems that only exist if we think of what tech we might be able to have in our living rooms. When everything is added up, does it really add something of value to the quality of life? No.

But would you be prepared to sacrifice better internet access in order to preserve your low carbon approach? I'm fortunate to live in an area where there is good broadband and I've worked from home for ten years. Out of the question to do it with rubbish "broadband", but has the existence of fast broadband for me offset all the travel etc I'd do otherwise? Maybe....
I think Internet access is a wonderful thing - but so far I get the impression that computer technology is a very successful parasitic lifeform rather than being something that is under proper control. Really, if you consider that we have still not fully mastered our carbon hungry transport infrastructure, I think that a lot more thought needs to go into how we would like our lives to be enriched by the technology in the long term rather than what kind of toys can be mass produced now and then thrown in the WEEE bin next year. That doesn't really need any focus on technology per se in itially - but rather it needs us to consciously know in our heart (rather than our heads) what it is that makes life rich and wholesome and worthwhile. Then it can be translated into head stuff and then it can be translate into useful gadgets and gizmos.

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"Iti sapis potanda tinone" Lycophron

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Alan Cresswell

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That's just a variation on the wrong-way-up approach of modern marketting (and, maybe it's always been that way).

Rarely does someone investigate what people need to make life better. Instead, someone finds something they can make and then tries to convince people that they need it. Which invariably ends up with resources consumed making lots of things people don't actually need, which then get discarded for the latest thing someone convinces them they need.

Altogether now, "Everybody needs a thneed".

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mr cheesy
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All of that said, the issue of DAB radio is pretty small beer on a global scale. I see what you mean about constant upgrades etc, though.

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arse

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lowlands_boy
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It's hard to imagine from our privileged position in the west that there's really anything we need from a consumerist point of view to make our lives better.

Any suggestions?

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itsarumdo
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Clearly, DAB radio

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Barnabas62
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Not sure it's worth a separate thread yet, but on the main theme of this thread, this looks interesting. My guess is it will also be broadcast in the US.

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Alogon
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"The Pope and the Planet" forum at All Ss. Pasadena

A great analysis by a philosopher in dialogue with the rector.

Particularly interesting points:

The global north gets the comfort, the global south gets the suffering. Those in the south will be affected first and most seriously by climate change. Although the speakers didn't use the term, what is happening is an example of "externalizing costs". Those in the north owe those in the south something as a matter of justice. Even libertarians don't deny this (proposing that externalizing costs is a form of trespass, and those trespassed upon should seek redress by means of lawsuits).

As God created the world in Genesis, He said several times, "It is good" even before creating humanity. It is thoroughly biblical to note, therefore, that the created order has value in God's eyes independently of its instrumental value to mankind. The rest of the world does not exists solely for us to exploit it.

The speakers did take issue, of course, with the Pope's need to oppose contraception. However, the Pope did suggest that good Catholics should have fewer children now than in the past. Overpopulation and consumption are both problems, but consumption is the more serious one. The carbon footprint of the poorest is only about 3% that of the richest. If everyone in the world could enjoy sustainably the consumption level of the richest, world population would need to be reduced to 850 million.

As Thoreau said, everything we do has moral-ethical implications.

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itsarumdo
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Alchemist : Take one part fluid and one part air...

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itsarumdo
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quote:
Originally posted by Alogon:
"The Pope and the Planet" forum at All Ss. Pasadena

A great analysis by a philosopher in dialogue with the rector.

Particularly interesting points:

The global north gets the comfort, the global south gets the suffering. Those in the south will be affected first and most seriously by climate change. Although the speakers didn't use the term, what is happening is an example of "externalizing costs". Those in the north owe those in the south something as a matter of justice. Even libertarians don't deny this (proposing that externalizing costs is a form of trespass, and those trespassed upon should seek redress by means of lawsuits).

As God created the world in Genesis, He said several times, "It is good" even before creating humanity. It is thoroughly biblical to note, therefore, that the created order has value in God's eyes independently of its instrumental value to mankind. The rest of the world does not exists solely for us to exploit it.

The speakers did take issue, of course, with the Pope's need to oppose contraception. However, the Pope did suggest that good Catholics should have fewer children now than in the past. Overpopulation and consumption are both problems, but consumption is the more serious one. The carbon footprint of the poorest is only about 3% that of the richest. If everyone in the world could enjoy sustainably the consumption level of the richest, world population would need to be reduced to 850 million.

As Thoreau said, everything we do has moral-ethical implications.

I watched the Vid, and it was a very clear exposition - not only of the Pope's position, but also of the general facts of global warming. Note that a business as usual indefinitely temperature rise of 12.5 degrees C means peak summer temperatures south of the UK well in excess of 50 degrees C. That makes about 2/3 of the planet's land surface essentially uninhabitable for at least half of the year. I worked in those temperatures for a few years as a desert hydrologist, and I can tell you - it's not sustainable for agriculture. And if you leave your AC living space for more than 5 minutes within +-2 hours of peak daytime temperature, your body pisses out so much water in an attempt to cool down that you will be lucky to make it back alive. Before then - well, the refugee situation in the Med and the ISIS thing in Iraq at the moment are just necessary small scale warm-ups to get us to face only a couple of the issues that will be on everyone's door in a decade or two if no action is taken.

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"Iti sapis potanda tinone" Lycophron

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Russ
Old salt
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quote:
Originally posted by Alogon:
Overpopulation and consumption are both problems, but consumption is the more serious one.

Overpopulation and overconsumption are two halves of the same problem.

A world population that grows at x% per year with constant emissions per head has much the same climate change impact as a rate of emissions per head that grows at x% per year with constant population.

And while it seems that everyone wills the end - stabilising emissions at a reduced level. The Catholic Church wills the means of limiting population about as much as the world's largest economy wills the means of reducing consumption.

Of course climate change is a moral issue. Of course the pope should think about it and talk about it. He's just 50 years too late...

Is his insightful conclusion really that the nations of the world should get together and talk about it ? 20 years after Kyoto ?

Posts: 3169 | From: rural Ireland | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Hedgehog

Ship's Shortstop
# 14125

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quote:
Originally posted by Russ:
Of course climate change is a moral issue. Of course the pope should think about it and talk about it. He's just 50 years too late...

To be fair, in Paragraph 4 of the Encyclical, it notes that in 1971 the Pope (although it was Paul VI) was sounding the warning:

quote:
4. In 1971, eight years after Pacem in Terris, Blessed Pope Paul VI referred to the ecological concern as “a tragic consequence” of unchecked human activity: “Due to an ill-considered exploitation of nature, humanity runs the risk of destroying it and becoming in turn a victim of this degradation”. He spoke in similar terms to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations about the potential for an “ecological catastrophe under the effective explosion of industrial civilization”, and stressed “the urgent need for a radical change in the conduct of humanity”, inasmuch as “the most extraordinary scientific advances, the most amazing technical abilities, the most astonishing economic growth, unless they are accompanied by authentic social and moral progress, will definitively turn against man”.
Footnotes and links omitted.

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"We must regain the conviction that we need one another, that we have a shared responsibility for others and the world, and that being good and decent are worth it."--Pope Francis, Laudato Si'

Posts: 2740 | From: Delaware, USA | Registered: Sep 2008  |  IP: Logged
lowlands_boy
Shipmate
# 12497

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quote:
Originally posted by Barnabas62:
Not sure it's worth a separate thread yet, but on the main theme of this thread, this looks interesting. My guess is it will also be broadcast in the US.

It's on BBC One this evening, July 12th at 6pm as a repeat.

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I thought I should update my signature line....

Posts: 836 | From: North West UK | Registered: Apr 2007  |  IP: Logged
Hedgehog

Ship's Shortstop
# 14125

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I fear I am committing thread necromancy, but I think this new report can add to the discussion, as Islamic leaders also urge action on climate change similar to the Pope's encyclical.

The text of the Islamic Declaration can be found Here.

I doubt the Islamic Declaration will result in any further action from U.S. political leaders than the Pope managed to get (i.e., pretty close to zero, so far as I can see).

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"We must regain the conviction that we need one another, that we have a shared responsibility for others and the world, and that being good and decent are worth it."--Pope Francis, Laudato Si'

Posts: 2740 | From: Delaware, USA | Registered: Sep 2008  |  IP: Logged
Alan Cresswell

Mad Scientist 先生
# 31

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President Obama has recently made a lot of noise about climate change. Whether it's in response to the Pope's comments is another matter.

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Don't cling to a mistake just because you spent a lot of time making it.

Posts: 32413 | From: East Kilbride (Scotland) or 福島 | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged



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