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Learning and the Climate Emergency

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Workshop: Learning and the Climate Emergency
Dr. Jenneth Parker & Prof. Ros Wade, RCE London
Europe Regional Meeting 2019
13-14 September, 2019, Heraklion, Greece

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Learning and the Climate Emergency

  1. 1. Regional RCE meeting: Climate Change, Sustainable Agriculture and Food Security Workshop: Learning and the Climate Emergency Dr Jenneth Parker, Research Director of the Schumacher Institute and member of London RCE Professor Ros Wade, London South Bank, RCE London
  2. 2. Aims: Immediate short term: present information about the climate emergency and gain an overview of how this is seen from the perspective of the different countries represented at the meeting; engage participants with some tools and approaches from systems thinking that can be useful to help bring climate issues into current work; Medium term: support strategic development in the RCE Network for Learning in response to the Climate Emergency; initiate the sharing of resources and ideas for possible projects across the Network; Longer term: start to amass and develop critical issues and themes useful for bringing climate issues into wider ESD work; initiate debates; work towards relevant policy inputs.
  3. 3. Where do we use the word “System”? Natural Systems, Engineered Systems, and Abstract Systems Everything is change, everything is a process, everything is a system
  4. 4. A global system that is under stress • Economic and geopolitical shifts, technology and automation, political ideologies • Systemic failures - financial crises, divergence of wealth, inequalities, collapse from over-complexity …. • Hitting the limits - resource constraints: energy, food, water, and the capacity to cope with pollution … • Consequences of human activity - climate change, pollution, inequality, conflict, international terrorism … Nothing is simple … a multitude of complex problems
  5. 5. 6 New Thinking for a New World: • ‘Discovering Earth’ from Space • New Sciences – Earth System Science • Global Ecology and Life Support Systems • The Anthropocene • New needs for Global Collaboration and Understanding across Boundaries
  6. 6. Earth System Science • Climate Science is part of ESS • ESS is Interdisciplinary – across bio-physical sciences eg bio-geo- chemical cycles • It is becoming transdisciplinary across social sciences – human land use and resource use • It supports much local and indigenous knowledge about our dependence on global nature – and on each other
  7. 7. Rockström et al. 2009; Steffen et al. 2015
  8. 8. Reference: Randers et al 2018
  9. 9. Living Economy – systems map prepared for the Schumacher Institute edited paper ‘ Restorative Land Use’ in 2015 by Professor Kristin Vala Ragnarsdottir & Professor Harald Svedrup
  10. 10. Dynamics in the For-Profit Economy Jennifer Hinton PhD candidate Stockholm University Jennifer Hinton’s work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. Based on a work with the Post Growth Institute, available at https://arxiv.org/pdf/190 2.01398.pdf
  11. 11. Rockström et al. 2009; Steffen et al. 2015 Raworth, 2017 Rockström et al. 2009; Steffen et al. 2015 Raworth, 2017
  12. 12. The Earth-3 model overview INPUTS: Historical time series data 1980 to 2015 DATA TO ESCIMO+: CO2 emissions CH4 emissions N2O emissions Kyoto-gas emissions Montreal-gas emis. Urban aerosol conc N and P release Pb and PCB release Forest cut - Tropical and Northern EARTH3 CORE Generates scenarios for socio- economic development Main dimensions: POPULATION1 -------- GDP2 -------------------- DISTRIBUTION3 ------ ENERGY4 --------------- 5 GHG EMISSIONS ---- 6 ECOLOGICAL FOOTPRINT - 7 WOOD USE ----------- 8 WATER USE --------- 9 OTHER EMISSIONS - ESCIMO+ Computes environmental effects Main dimensions: 1 TEMPERATURE ----- OCEAN2 ---------------- 3 ATMOSPHERE ------- 4. LAND ----------------- 5. CONTAMINATION- 6. BIOCAPACITY ------- DATA TO SDG-module: GDPpp Job market growth GDPpp in 2. sector Income to top %10 Urban aerosol conc Ecological footprint pp Governmt spending pp Export fraction Population DATA TO EARTH3 SDG: Temperature rise Ocean acidity Old-growth forest area DATA TO PB-module: Freshwater withdrawal Non-energy ecological footprint DATA TO EARTH3 PB: Temperature rise Montreal-gas conc Ocean acidity Old-growth forest area N and P release Urban aerosol conc Pb and PCB release Global biocapacity REGIONAL SDG SUCCESS MODULE Computes indicators for the achievement of 17 Sustainable Development Goals per region PLANETARY BOUNDARIES MODULE Computes indicators for the pressure on 9 Planetary Boundaries DATA TO SDG ACHIEVEMENT INDEX: Fraction below $/1.90 day Fraction undernourished Life expectancy at birth School life expectancy Gender parity in schooling Fraction with safe water Fraction with electricity Job market growth GDPpp in 2. sector Income share to top %10 Urban aerosol conc Ecological footprint pp Temperature rise Ocean acidity Old-growth forest area Governmt spending pp Export share of GDP DATA TO SAFETY MARGIN INDEX: Temperature rise Montreal-gas conc Ocean acidity Old-growth forest area N and P release Freshwater withdrawal Unused biocapacity Urban aerosol conc Pb and PCB release THRESHOLD VALUES “TARGETS” and “HALFWAY( TARGETS”) FOR ALL 17 SDGs THRESHOLD VALUES (“SAFE” and “HIGH-RISK”) FOR ALL 9 PBs WORLD SDG SUCCESS SCORE The “current achievement relative to target” for all 17 SDGs - by region and aggregated SAFETY MARGIN The risk level per year for all 9 PBs - globally Randers et al. (2018) and Collste et al. (2018)
  13. 13. Challenges of Equity within Planetary Boundaries (1) • Bringing together Environment and Development constituencies - groups/movements and thinkers • Challenging Inequality – both between and within countries. Current forms of globalisation continue to worsen inequalities • Challenging mainstream globalised economics – challenges to GDP as the only measurement and finding ways to bring in the value of life- support systems and to measure ‘ecological efficiency/
  14. 14. Challenges of Equity within Planetary Boundaries (2) • Cultural challenges of changing consumerism • Discovering deeper and richer forms of human meaning and identity – often found in faith systems and cultural self-expression • Moving towards more cooperative business models that care for people and the environment on which we depend • Developing human freedom in situations of stress in transition to new forms of society and economy • Linking social change with ethical commitments to humanity and to the planet
  15. 15. Exploring purposes: What are people doing and why? Can we help share perspectives? (rich pictures, worldviews, soft systems, action research) Exploring the future - visioning: What might happen, shared perspectives on the long term (system dynamics, scenarios, 3 horizons) Exploring consequences: System modelling, emancipation (power and control) Exploring outside the normal - creativity: A process to challenge perceived barriers to change and to generate opportunities by combining diverse approaches How might systems thinking help?
  16. 16. As a systems thinker, I try to be……… Experimenting regularly Framing, advocating, illustrating, and inquiring Listening actively Asking ‘where am I in this’ Radically humble Open to different ways of knowing Acting with an attitude of love Looking after myself Looking for: Patterns Feedbacks Boundaries Relationships Open to what emerges Seeing the world through the eyes of another To look at the world and see it whole Asking ‘who is excluded’
  17. 17. Convergence We are all part of one interdependent and limited system in which the well-being and resilience of localities, nations, and regions is dependent upon the well-being of all.
  18. 18. References: Jennifer Hinton & Donnie McLurcan (2019) How on Earth: Flourishing in a Not-for- Profit world https://arxiv.org/pdf/1902.01398.pdf. Video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y2VZRbnbn0U&fbclid=IwAR2JB5ew5FIPB51wa- RsJ24Go5OlWHmnsiCnYi3_uq17T6p4ZfZ8_fFl0U0 Parker, Jenneth (2014) Critiquing Sustainability, Changing Philosophy. Routledge: London Randers, J., Rockström, J., Stoknes, P. E., Golüke, U., Collste, D., & Cornell, S. E. (2018). Transformation is feasible: How to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals within Planetary Boundaries. A report to the Club of Rome, for its 50 years anniversary 17 October 2018 (p. 60). Retrieved from Stockholm Resilience Centre website: https://www.stockholmresilience.org/publications/artiklar/2018-10-17-transformation-is-feasible ---how-to-achieve-the-sustainable--development-goals-within-planetary-boundaries.html Roderick, Ian (2018). ‘Preparing for Change in the Anthropocene: A Systems Perspective’. Vol 1, No 2 System Change. Vadovics, Edina and Milton, Simon and the CONVERGE project team (2012) Equity and Limits in Theory and Practice http://intezet.greendependent.org/documents/CONVERGE_ebook_EquityWithinLimits_initiatives_web.pdf

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