Sustainability Reads: March 3- March 9

Cut the ‘weirdo words’ and put a human face on climate change, says UN chief
In an attempt to make the effects of climate change more tangible, the UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christina Figueres has said that the science needs to be translated into a way that policymakers understand in order to get an adequate and promising agreement in Paris in 2015. This is vital to the working of the UNFCCC which has seen almost no progress in addressing climate change.  Putting a human face on the issue will allow for policymakers and delegates to keep up with the science and to understand the importance of coming to an agreement quickly and provide a tangible rationale for negotiation. The IPCC’s will release two new sections to its latest report on climate change that will specifically focus on the impacts on human society and measures policymakers could take to cut emissions and adapt, as a way to make the concepts easily accessible and understandable to delegates and policymakers. Piece by Ros Donald, posted on the Carbon Brief. 

Report Exposes How the TTIP Could Expand Fracking in U.S. and Europe
The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), a proposed free trade agreement between the U.S. and Europe is said to have a loophole that would allow for more fracking in both the U.S. and throughout Europe. A study called “No Fracking Way” released on Thursday by the Friends of the Earth Europe, the Sierra Club, and Corporate Europe Observatory revealed the revelation, stating that the free trade agreement contains language that would “allow energy companies to take governments to private arbitrators if they try to regulate or ban fracking.” Many say that if this part of the agreement goes through, it would undermine Europe’s growing resistance to fracking and most likely increase fracking within the U.S. Groups are now calling for this part of the agreement to be adjusted to eliminate this from the deal. Article by Brandon Baker and published on EcoNews by EcoWatch.

Start Your Gardens: A simple guide for growing fresh produce at home
For anyone else who is inspired by the thought of spring and can envision a healthy, beautiful garden as the sunshine after the storm, here are 5 steps to planting one:

Step 1: Plan for your locale; Find out which plants work for your climate and plot.

Step 2: Start with the soil; Test then prep your soil with compost, organic fertilizer, and mulch.

Step 3: Plant the rainbow; Start with seeds bred for taste, nutritional value and better regional adaptation.

Step 4: Pest control without pesticides; Use plants or biopesticides to attract and manage pests.

Step 5: Love the bees; Make a nesting block in your yard to help bees flourish. From NRDC

The Gender Advantage: Women on the front line of climate change
Recognition that rural women in developing countries are on the front line of climate change impacts. Case studies illustrate when climate change adaptation is geared toward specific challenges faced by women smallholder farmers, it creates a virtuous cycle that improves economic options, incomes and yields, and reduces workloads for women and their families. By International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

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