Browsing All Posts filed under »Nature«

Talking about Population

February 16, 2012 by


Summary: The ‘population question’ comes and goes, but the issue never really goes away, and there is still a general unwillingness to talk about it. While I certainly don’t see it as the world’s greatest threat, I think the goal of a stable population across the world is an honerable one, and one unavoidable requirement […]

The point of no return

January 22, 2012 by


Summary: Tipping points are when systems suddenly change very quickly to another state. In ecosystems this can be catastrophic, with examples including suddenly increasing rates of forest loss or climatic warming. Veraart et al.’s (2011) research, published in Nature, allows us to be aware of whether tipping points are being approached by monitoring how quickly […]

Equality: The Answer to Everything?

January 2, 2012 by


Summary: The book The Spirit Level published in 2009 outlines strong empirical proof that greater income equality creates a better society. Greater equality is inversely correlated with a large number of social problems, and even rich people are shown to be better off in more equal societies. Causation is supported by reasoning and experimental evidence. […]

What makes a Climate Leader?

December 23, 2011 by


Summary: Everybody has an influence on those around them, the only question is whether that influence is positive or negative. This article investigates the characteristics of climate change leadership, arguing that everybody has the possibility of being a climate leader. Power is not required for climate leadership, only the possibility to positively influence others around […]

Is Sustainability Relative?

October 17, 2011 by


Appropriate strategies for sustainable development are context-specific, with different priorities depending on how far people are up Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. A four point strategy for identifying approaches for sustainable development is outlined and the importance of regulatory ‘top-down’ intervention emphasized. The concept of sustainable development concerns the management of resources available to humanity. My […]

Ecotourism: The million star hotel in the desert

May 22, 2011 by


Ateshooni is the name of a 400 year-old house located alongside of the remains of a citadel from the Sassanid Empire period in the oasis of Garmeh. The Sassanid ruled Persia from 224 to 651 A.D. This old house has been renovated by Maziar and his family, by using the same methods and materials as […]

Did you know that ice is a mineral?

April 2, 2011 by


We are used thinking that a typical mineral is a stone, something that is hard to break, like quartz or granite. Despite this common misconception, minerals however, are not just heavy stones. They are simply naturally occurring substances with a defined chemical formula and crystal structure. Thus even ice can be legitimately considered as a […]