COMMUNITY NEWS–THE INTERSECTIONAL ENVIRONMENTALIST
In community news, I just got hipped to Leah Thomas, the Intersectional Environmentalist. And now I’m hipping her to you. Leah studied environmentalism in college. Through her studies she realized the environmentalism narrative often didn’t include people of color. So, she next leveled environmentalism, pairing the word with the feminist idea of “intersectionality”, a term first coined by Kimberle Crenshaw. And voila—Intersectional Environmentalism was born. It’s meant to advocate for both protection of people and the planet, highlighting protection of the most vulnerable communities.
It was in May 2020, though, that Leah found her true calling. Following the murder of George Floyd, Leah called on the environmental community to make a pledge to Black lives and commit to a journey of intersectional advocacy that would amplify silenced voices. The post went viral, and the online sustainability community began looking for spaces to listen to and amplify these silenced voices.
Leah launched the intersectionalenvironmentalist.com platform quickly thereafter, thanks to the help of cofounders Diandra Marizet, Sabs Katz, and Phil Aiken. Intersectional Environmentalism matters because it is an inclusive version of environmentalism that identifies ways in which injustices happening to marginalized communities and the earth are interconnected. So often the mitigation, adaptation, and resilience strategies of mainstream communities doesn’t transmit to underserved communities. Likewise, great work combating climate change in marginalized communities often doesn’t get the media spotlight it deserves. Leah Thomas’s group aims to remedy those injustices.
So, how to help?. Well here’s me recommending that you surf on over to intersectionalenvironmentalist.com and click on IE Stories. You WILL be rewarded, if not inspired.
DEEPER DIVE: Intersectional Environmentalist
$32 MILLION EFFORT TO RESTORE LOUISIANA MARSH
A $32 million restoration project to restore more than 300 acres of Louisiana marsh is underway. Reported by NOLA, a New Orleans and Louisiana news outlet, Cameron Meadows, located in southwest Louisiana, endured two decades of intense environmental degradation from hurricanes, oil and gas exploration.
However, today, work has already begun to restore the environment. Houston-based Great Lakes Dredging & Docks company is expected to pour roughly 2.36 million cubic yards of sand from the Gulf of Mexico into the site. The state also plans to build over two and a half miles of terracing to protect the area from ocean currents and allow sediment to settle. Funded by Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act, the project is part of Louisiana’s $50 billion effort to save the state’s coastline from rising sea levels.
In an interview with NOLA, chairman of the state Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority Chip Kline emphasized the urgency of this project to protect heavily populated areas in Louisiana from effects of climate change. “The 2020 hurricane season further cemented this goal and our sense of urgency to increase protection for residents across Southwest Louisiana.”
DEEPER DIVE: NOLA
NATURAL CAPITAL’S 10TH BIRTHDAY
In a segment we’re calling “greening the economy”/”growing the green economy”/”grow green economy, grow!”, we celebrate 2021 as the 10th birthday of the birth of the term “Natural Capital.” Natural capital is the sum of all environmental assets both private and public. Things like soils, from which beneficial services flow like crops, and flowers and cross-pollinating insects.
It was way back in 2011 that some very earnest British folk had the foresight to realize that a minimum level of natural resources is required to maintain the capacity of ecosystems to sustain human well-being at “acceptable levels.”
Members of Britain’s parliament went on to realize that the failure of governments to effectively monitor the use or degradation of natural resource systems could prove devastating to both human wellbeing and future national economic activity.
Their big idea was that better understanding of the mechanisms that link ecological systems to human well-being is required to assess both the value of the benefits of the natural environment and the investment required to maintain a maximum beneficial level. And the concept of Natural capital was born. Happy 10th birthday Natural Capital. We here at the Climate Daily look forward to watching you grow and mature into adolescence.
DEEPER DIVE: Natural Capital Accounting, Environmental Accounting, Wikipedia
FORMER GERMAN COAL PLANT FINDS NEW LIFE AS HYDROGEN HUB
A former coal power plant is leveling up to hydrogen hubspot. Vattenfall, a Swedish multinational power company, plans to restore a coal-fired power plant in northern Germany as a hubspot for hydrogen energy. Reported by Bloomberg News, the hubspot would house technology, including a 100-megawatt electrolyzer, to turn wind and solar power into hydrogen. If all goes well, hydrogen production could start by 2025.
The Swedish power company has already submitted a letter of intent to global and local utility companies. Partners on the project plan to submit an application for European Union funding during the first quarter of this year. News on the transition to hydrogen power aligns the gradual global shift to a low-carbon economy. Around the world, governments plan to offer subsidies to support technological developments in hydrogen power, with the European Union estimated to offer up to $570 billion of investment towards hydrogen infrastructure.
DEEPER DIVE: Bloomberg News