Social Change

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Resistance to Donald Trump started shortly after he announced his intention to run for public office, but it was not until recently that corporate America finally stood up to him in earnest. Even before Trump won the Republican nomination, some powerful business leaders openly opposed him. Shortly after he was elected in 2016, many pundits predicted that Trump was a serious risk factor that should be countered by corporate America. This was followed by warnings about the dangers of  "Trump's defective judgment, psychological dysfunction and amorality". Early corporate resistance It did not take long for corporate leaders to realize that Trump's trade wars and love of despots was bad for business. Shortly after his inauguration in 2017, the CEOs of America's leading corporations resigned from Trump's business council due to his ineptitude. Business leaders came together to urge Trump to respect the Paris Agreement. Then after he withdrew from the accord there...

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There were a record number of extreme weather events and climate related disasters in 2020.  An ever warming planet has increased both the intensity and the frequency of these events. The data shows that such events are becoming more intense and more frequent. They are also growing ever more deadly and causing increasing financial losses amounting to trillions of dollars. Last year these events were compounded by COVID-19. According to a new report, last more than 50 million people were hit simultaneously by climate-related disasters and the pandemic.     In 2020 there were many extreme weather events and climate disasters that were documented in locations all around the world (for the complete list of extreme weather and climate related disasters in 2020 see the bottom of this page). The deadly connection between extreme weather and climate change is becoming increasingly hard to ignore. The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said that the exceptional heat we saw in 2020...

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protected areas and new species on the map of the world

Buried under apocalyptic headlines, there were a host of positive biodiversity stories in 2020. Progress in habitat protection and species reintroductions suggest that we are seeing efforts to combat biodiversity loss. Last year scientists discovered dozens of animals that were thought to be extinct as well as hundreds of new species ranging from large mammals to tiny amphibians. These discoveries help us to understand that this planet is teaming with more life than we know.. Local initiatives are taking place all around the world. One of the most well known is the Trillion Trees Initiative. This global initiative has garnered support from business and political leaders.. Last year Pakistan announced a tree planting program that will employ 63,000 people. Bans on plastic are also becoming more common and ocean clean-ups are now an international phenomenon. In 2020 Hawaii's Ocean Voyages Institute (OVI) collected 103 tons of plastic and other debris out of...

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images of extreme weather events

It's official, despite cooling from a La Niña event, 2020 has tied 2016 as the warmest year on record, ending the warmest decade on record. These findings were released by Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) on January 8, 2021.   In 2020 we saw the hottest temperature ever reliably recorded. Death Valley California saw temperature readings of 54.4 C (129.92 F) on August 17, 2020. Last year's heat contributed to unprecedented  extreme weather including a  record setting Atlantic storm season and pervasive wildfires. As explained by Penn State University professor  Michael Mann, this year's heat is "way out of balance".  This warming is being driven by anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG), primarily from the burning of fossil fuels. Despite an estimated seven percent reduction in fossil CO2 emissions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, GHGs continued to increase in 2020. The increase of 2.3 parts per million (ppm) of atmospheric carbon is slightly less than the...

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January 6, 2021 is a historic day, it is also a day that will live in infamy.  The day that started with historic electoral victories and ended with a mob sacking the Capitol of the world's oldest democracy. After a decisive victory in the general election, Georgia voters gave Democrats control of the Senate, then came the insurrection call from the outgoing commander-and-chief.  Early Wednesday morning, it was already clear that Democratic challenger Rev. Raphael Warnock had defeated Republican incumbent Sen. Kelly Loeffler. Later that day, Democrat Jon Ossoff was declared the winner against Republican incumbent David Perdue. These are historic victories in which the majority of Georgians defended democracy and rejected Trump's demagoguery.  Republicans lost the Senate elections in Georgia despite outspending Democrats by tens of millions of dollars. What makes the loss even more significant is the fact that the peach state has not put a Democrat in...

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