Posts Tagged ‘Climate change’

Science or science fiction? Professionals’ discursive construction of climate change

March 19, 2013

From Organization Studies

Is it possible that modern society’s bitter political divisions over belief in anthropogenic climate change is distracting decision-makers from the far more practical and urgent matter of confronting the risk that it presents, directly or indirectly, to businesses and the economy? Based on a survey of 1,000 professional engineers and geologists in Alberta, this paper suggests this may be so. It examines the different viewpoints these experts hold concerning climate change and possible ways forward. Five frames that differ with regard to the cause of climate change, its implications and impacts, and especially the necessary steps, including regulation, to attend to the problem are identified. The paper also offers insights on the different ways in which adherents of these frames justify their views, legitimate themselves as experts in the matter, and try to mobilize others to support them.

Exploring the link between position within corporations and government and the frames used, the study indicates that those who are more defensive occupy more senior organizational positions and are much closer to decision-making than pro-regulation activists. Despite the current scientific dissension, declining public interest and political intransigence, the paper concludes by outlining an opportunity to ‘broker’ dissention between these groups.

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Climate change and the emergence of new organizational landscapes

December 11, 2012

Special Issue

From Organization Studies

Climate change for many is a critical issue. There appears to be a general consensus among the countries that constitute the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) that a 2° Celsius warming of the planet will have dangerous, perhaps even catastrophic, consequences. More than 20 years after climate change was recognized as a critical problem, efforts to address it show a record of failure. Despite high-level efforts by states under the UNFCCC and its Kyoto Protocol, there is still no legally binding agreement to effectively cut carbon dioxide emissions globally.

This special issue recognizes that climate change is not just an environmental problem requiring technical and managerial solutions; it is a political issue where a variety of organizations – state agencies, firms, industry associations, NGOs and multilateral organizations – engage in contestation as well as collaboration over the issue. Given the urgency of the problem and the need for a rapid transition to a low-carbon economy, there is a pressing need for organization scholars to develop a better understanding of apathy and inertia in the face of the current crisis and to identify paths toward transformative change. The seven papers in this special issue examine strategies, discourses, identities and practices in relation to climate change at multiple levels.

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Supporting adaptation decision making in response to a changing climate

August 7, 2012

Special Issue: Adaptation and resilience to a changing climate: Supporting adaptation decision making

From Building Services Engineering Research and Technology

This special issue provides an overview on the development of weather data based on the UK Climate Projections 2009 (UKCP09) to support modelling of buildings and services. UKCP09 offers a range of possible climate outcomes and the probability of those outcomes, based on our best understanding of how the climate system operates and how drivers of change can affect those outcomes. It is this offering that provides both the challenges and the opportunities to practitioners and provides the focus for research presented in this Special Issue.

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Climate change link to war remains tenuous

February 15, 2012

Special Issue: Climate change and conflict

From Journal of Peace Research      

Does climate change sow the seeds of war? Until recently, most answers to this political question have been based on speculation. This landmark issue investigates a host of potential causes for conflict. Many other factors have a far greater influence than climate change on peace and stability, most of the studies conclude. On balance, the authors only find limited support for an influence of climate change on armed conflict. But this does not eliminate the possibility that when climate issues are framed as a security problem, this may influence actor perception and contribute to a self-fulfilling prophecy.

In the largest collection of peer-reviewed writings on the topic to date, the authors employ systematic climate data and climate projections. Most of the articles deal with civil war, a few with international war, and several studies go beyond state-based conflict to look at possible implications for communal conflict and other kinds of violence.

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Do the benefits of nuclear power outweigh the risks?: A time for Japan to review its policies?

March 23, 2011

The Challenge of Climate Change and Energy Policies for Building a Sustainable Society in Japan

From Organization & Environment 

In response to last week’s earthquake and tsunami in Japan, the role and safety risks of nuclear power are being reassessed globally. The 1990s witnessed an unprecedented recognition that environmental problems were occurring at a global level. Demonstrating Japan’s commitment to the Kyoto Protocol it switched from fossil fuels to nuclear power as its primary energy source. Nuclear power has become central to its climate change and energy policies. The shift to secure increasing energy demand instead of reducing energy consumption has been widely criticised. Through an in-depth analysis of Japan’s climate change policy, this study assesses to what extent Japan has succeeded in environmental reforms without generating other environmental impacts to provide insight into this debate. Are the recent devastating events in Japan a warning to review its nuclear policies?

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Mounting evidence links global warming to the spread of disease

October 5, 2010

Climate change and communicable disease: what are the risks?

From Journal of Infection Prevention

There is an increasing amount of evidence acknowledging that infectious diseases are associated with heatwaves, storms, floods, fires, and droughts. While we are often made aware of the detrimental effects of climate change on agriculture, fisheries, ecosystems and economies, these in turn will have an impact on health and well being that should also be considered. This article outlines the risks and calls for policies to be implemented to facilitate disease prevention and control.

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Can Michigan achieve a 35% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by embracing new climate change policies?

August 25, 2010

Climate change policy formation in Michigan – The case for integrated regional policies

From International Regional Science Review

Following 30 other US states Michigan recently launched The Michigan climate initiative to begin addressing the problem of climate change. This article shows how research was integrated into the policy process to inform decision makers about environmental policy and it estimates the potential gains.

It looks to the successful experience of the European Union Trading System with its Carbon Tax system and puts forward policies that limit emissions by placing a ‘‘cap,’’ enforced by the issuance of permits, or ‘‘allowances.’’

The article concludes  that a combination of sector-based measures and market incentive based policies could attain a low cost, high co-benefit solution.

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