Generation [A]daptation: the new collaborative blog wants you

 

Confession time.

While I have been waging open warfare on the denial movement, secretly I have been plotting with a couple of others a new blog dealing with the variety of challenges our civilisation faces:

  • climate change
  • peak oil
  • food and water security issues
  • energy

We have called it Generation [A]daption because those alive today and those born over the next 100 years will be living on a different planet.

To quote a great writer:

“…I apologize. I said I would apologize; I apologize now. I apologize because of the terrible mess the planet is in. But it has always been a mess. There have never been any ”Good Old Days,” there have just been days. And as I say to my grandchildren, ”Don’t look at me. I just got here myself.”

So you know what I’m going to do? I declare everybody here a member of Generation A. Tomorrow is another day for all of us….”

- Kurt Vonnegut Commencement address Syracuse University 1994

None of us asked for this, and our children certainly didn’t.

But we share a responsibility to do something about it.

Because the values we hold dear – compassion, pragmaticism, reason and justice – are worth preserving.

Who we are: Tim, Mike and Megan

Three of us have been discussing this since November last year, and working on the concept over the last three months.

  • Tim runs the brilliant blog Moth Incarnate.
  • Megan is a researcher at Queensland Uni.
  • And I’m well… Mike from WtD.

It was Tim who first suggested the idea on his blog. He sparked a small revolution, and I have him to thank for inspiring me.

But we want to extend the conversation.

Instead of shaking our heads in frustration, we can begin the process of adaptation.

We are not debating the science: discussion and community

Tim, Megan and I have all felt frustrated with the current level of discussion. The science is clear: the climate is changing, food security is of growing concern and we cannot rely on fossil fuels.

So we need to start debating the alternatives, discussing how we can adapt and sharing information.

We need to work together at the grass roots level.

We want to build a network of interested persons and organisations who are just as frustrated as us, and want to begin the process of adaptation.

We don’t want to preach.

We want you to contribute, share your ideas and stories about what you have done to make a difference.

We want to act.

We want to work with you.

It’s about building networks from the ground up.

Not another blog about climate science: no debate, just practical solutions

We will NOT be debating the science.

We will not get stuck in the endless, and now pointless discussion of whether or not climate change is real.

The debate is over.

We have looked at the floods, cyclones and fires that have swept across Australia and other parts of the world these past six months and have decided enough, is enough.

It is time to act.

There are other places where people can debate the science.

All those internet trolls that infest the web will have no place on GenAdapt. Those demons will be cast into the darkness.

Let them stew in their willed ignorance.

We have more important things to do.

And yes, WtD will continue in one form or another :)

What we aim to achieve

GenAdapt is:

Gen[A] is a group already convinced by the overwhelming scientific evidence behind our changing climate, growing food, water and energy insecurities and biodiversity loss. For this reason, debate over the reality of these problems will not be permitted on this site. No big loss really – for the blogosphere seems overpopulated with places willing to accommodate such discussion. The debate we crave regards our next steps;

  • How best can we meet these challenges so future generations are provided a world as wonderful, if not more so than that which we are familiar with?
  • How can we ensure that our children, our grandchildren and those that follow can have a standard of living that we would expect for them?
  • How can we maintain diversity of lifestyle, ecology, food and culture under increasing resource and environmental stress?

These questions and many more will be the focus of our discussions and we encourage constructive debate to help enrich innovative thinking. We will not, however, allow pointless and irrelevant debate, nor will we tolerate ad hominem attacks aimed at contributors. Such comments will be removed to allow constructive discussions to propagate unrestricted.

We hope you enjoy being part of Generation Adaptation!

I’d like to thank Tim for expressing our intent so well.

“They” have failed us; “they” will continue to fail us

Mainstream politicians and political parties are failing us. They know the science, but are reluctant to act. Either caught in the thrall of economic rationalism or deep in the pockets of big oil/coal, “they” are failing us.

If anyone has to roll up their sleeves and get to work it has to be us.

We can lead by example. 

We can shape the debate

We can be the ones pushing the mainstream.

Going live in March: call for contributions

The blog is still under construction; however we are actively seeking contributions from interested persons.

How to contact and follow us: email, blog, Twitter and more!

You can email us at genadapt@gmail.com

Alternatively you contact us at the blog here.

Note the blog is a work in progress!

We have also set up a Twitter feed at GenAdapt.

The Gen [A] manifesto!

A fuller document will be posted soon discussing the project in depth, the resources available and how you can help.

Mike @ WtD

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21 thoughts on “Generation [A]daptation: the new collaborative blog wants you

  1. Good luck, Mike, Megan and Tim,
    I’m looking forward to seeing how this website develops.

    Here’s a little warm up rant to get the blood going,
    it’s a reply to a letter to the editor suggesting to “Let the Free Market Address Conservation.”

    short and sweet at 309 words:
    http://citizenschallenge.blogspot.com/2011/04/let-free-market-address-conservation.html

  2. Sundance says:

    WTD, good luck on this venture and I think this is the better approach with which to build a platform for education and behavior change with respect to energy choices and energy use. I have a long time interest in finding ways to reduce dependence on the power grid. I hope you get into do-it-yourself systems of grid free energy as it would be a revival of a movement that began in the 1970s with grid free eco life style magazines and supported by energy efficient products catalogs with 12V appliances and super insulation techniques. It was very influencial in my lifelong motivation for living a high efficiency, lower energy lifestyle.

  3. Ken Fabos says:

    Sounds like a worthwhile effort and potentially more personally rewarding than the endless roundabout of confronting denialist arguments. Genuine attempts to engage with them are frustrating, even when it’s primarily for the hypothetical interested readers who may not have made up their minds. I will definitely drop in to the new blog and, if appropriate, contribute as well.

  4. klem says:

    I think this is a great ideas as well. I’m tired of fighting over climate change, it’s pretty much a dead issue now. I now look forward to years of future battles regarding adaptation. Good luck with this new endeavor and to you all. Cheers.

  5. Felicity K says:

    Love this concept! I am creating values-based professional forums that link people and ideas for business adaptation. My first is in May 2011 in Melbourne and it’s called ‘Women in The Space’, or WiTS.

    I’m driven by what I perceive to be a lack of ethics at the board/decision making level of business and I want to address that by helping folk to re-acquaint themselves with or re-articulate the values that drive them at work. The idea is that the attendant gals will be inspired by the example of others and make direct, productive connections in ways that will guide and shift businesses to sustainable practices.

    I would love to help or contribute in some way to the [A]daptation agenda.

    Keep you posted
    Felicity

  6. KeenOn350 says:

    Just now chanced on this blog by referral from MT’s bloglist (Only In It For The Gold - Where the 4 Winds Dwell).

    I like the idea, and I will definitely be back.

    I feel compelled to make a couple of comments on first visit –

    1) Your list of challenges we face is seriously incomplete –
    the variety of challenges our civilisation faces:
    climate change
    peak oil
    food and water security issues
    energy

    Missing is – overpopulation.

    This topic must be addressed in conjunction with those you list – in many ways, it is the primary problem, underlying all the rest.

    We are destroying our biosphere in the attempt to support the present population of the globe – clean energy is not a sufficient answer – we need several generations (if we last that long) of single-child families, in all parts of the world, not just in Africa and Asia.

    2) We are presently at 390 ppm CO2 – with it’s concomitant implications for climate and the oceans. To find an equivalent level of CO2 in the atmosphere, you need to go back about 15 million years; Neanderthals came on the scene about 300,000 years ago, and homo sapiens (??) about 200,000 years ago. In effect, we are already living on a different planet – there is no “will be” about it.

    3) Exchange of information is good – discussion of solutions is good – but we have reached the point where we need people in the streets!

    • Watching the Deniers says:

      Thanks mate – indeed we have a much fuller document discussing issues for interested persons.

      Re 1) I will confess, population was not discussed in depth. However, it is an issue that has to be debated in depth.

      Re 2) I share your concern. The words “Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum” (PETM) and “Clathrate Gun Hypothesis” give me sleepless nights. I think you know what I’m talking about.

      Re 3) Taking it to the streets.. this is our main motivation. The conversation is cerebral and excludes far too many. We want to reach beyond those advocates on both sides and engage the “mums and dads”, grand parents, youth… those demographic presently discouraged or excluded.

      Please, give us your thoughts.

      And we you want to contribute – I’d love to see it.

      • J Bowers says:

        US Climate Change Science Program
        Abrupt Climate Change
        Final Report, Synthesis and Assessment Product 3.4
        http://www.climatescience.gov/Library/sap/sap3-4/final-report/default.htm

        Abrupt Climate Change: Summaries and Findings:
        http://downloads.climatescience.gov/sap/sap3-4/sap3-4-brochure.pdf

        More:
        http://www.climatescience.gov/default.php

      • KeenOn350 says:

        I am co-owner/director (with my wife) of a summer camp for young people in Canada.
        Yes, the Clathrate Gun and the Methane time-bombs are located more or less in my back yard (although I confess to never having visited the far north), so I am “scared (w)itless”?
        My present project is to raise awareness and a proper sense of urgency within my own line – among camp directors. They will then (I hope) join me in trying to raise the awareness and commitment of young people of high school and university age (our older campers and staff).
        Interestingly enough, this is a “start from the basics” project; even these people, who are more connected to the real world than most, are surprisingly unaware at the detail level, and have not yet seen the urgency of the challenges we face.
        I gave a brief presentation to a group of directors from our provincial association (Association des Camps du Québec) on Thursday. The follow-up “starter information kit” for them is posted in conjunction with our camp website at wilvaken.com/acq .
        This material hasn’t reached the stage of addressing solutions yet – hopefully it will – but may be useful to you in helping bring people on board.
        Regards – DaveW

  7. David Green says:

    I look forward to this it will be interesting :-)

  8. J Bowers says:

    Jan. 31, 2011 – Public belief in climate change weathers storm, poll shows

    Events of past 18 months have little effect on Britons’ opinion, as 83% view climate change as a current or imminent threat
    [...]
    A large majority of people think that humanity is causing climate change, with 68% agreeing and 24% choosing to blame non-man-made factors,

    Sep. 8, 2010 – Large Majority of Americans Support Government Solutions to Address Global Warming

    Large majorities of the residents of Florida, Maine and Massachusetts believe the Earth has been getting warmer gradually over the last 100 years (81 percent, 78 percent and 84 percent, respectively), and large majorities favor government action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions…
    [...]
    Majority believe warming due to human activity

    Mirroring the national survey, the statewide research conducted in July shows that very large majorities think that if the world has been warming, it has been due primarily or at least partly to “things people do” – 72 percent in Florida, 76 percent in Maine and 80 percent in Massachusetts compared to 75 percent nationally.

    Jan. 5, 2011 – Scientific American -“Bulge” in Atmospheric Pressure Responsible for Cold Winter Amid Global Warming

    But Jon Krosnick, a professor at Stanford University, said the only group affected by cold weather in terms of belief about climate change is the 30 percent of the population who distrust scientists. And then they only consider how the most recent season compares to the previous three years in terms of worldwide temperatures, he said.

    If this winter is unusually cold, he said, you would expect to see a “small drop” in the percentage of people who think global warming is happening.

    “People don’t use their local temperatures as a benchmark,” he said. “They are not dodos.”

    ;)

  9. rpauli says:

    Great notion. Go for it.. and mitigation is just long-term adaptation.

  10. clegyrboia says:

    GREAT news and as i said to Tim i will be happy to contribute to this blog from Wales. A good way to learn from eachother.

  11. J Bowers says:

    * Guardian – Peak oil: We are asleep at the wheel
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/cif-green/2011/feb/10/peak-oil-saudi-reserves
    * Guardian – The UK must own up to the full scale of its emissions problem
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/cif-green/2011/feb/08/uk-emissions-problem

    * An Armchair Audit of World Oil Reserves
    http://www.ipc66.com/publications/IS_World_Oil_Reserves.pdf

    * Black Swan Theory
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_swan_theory
    * Ten Principles for a Black Swan Robust World
    http://www.fooledbyrandomness.com/tenprinciples.pdf

    3. People who were driving a school bus blindfolded (and crashed it) should never be given a new bus.

    LA Times – Koch brothers now at heart of GOP power
    http://discussions.latimes.com/20/lanews/la-na-koch-brothers-20110206/10

    Seven Warning Signs of Bogus Science – Robert L. Park, Ph.D
    http://www.quackwatch.com/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/signs.html

  12. ianash says:

    Mike
    These guys are worth a look:

    http://beyondzeroemissions.org/

  13. ianash says:

    Love it. Great idea.

  14. [...] of my readers would’ve also seen Mike’s post Generation [A]daptation: the new collaborative blog wants you which is about a new collaborative site he, myself and Megan (a researcher at UQ and contributor [...]

  15. fredorth says:

    This should be an outstanding learning opportunity. Additionally, an opportunity to act. Fantastic.

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