COP26; a Vehicle for Change or Political Football?

Underwater by 2050? Later this year Glasgow will host the annual United Nation
Climate Challenge COP26 Meeting of World Leaders (UN Climate Change Conference,
UK 2020). The timing and venue are appropriate since Scotland was one of the
first countries in the world to acknowledge the global climate emergency and
has since introduced the most ambitious target, to be carbon neutral by 2045,
five Read More…

Annual temperature increase since 1884 in Scotland

Green new year resolutions from the Transition team

Climate change-driven fires burning up Australia, biblical floods in Indonesia, and the hottest decade on record worldwide…2020 is not even one month old and the news headlines are already sounding alarm bells about the climate crisis unfolding around us. Words from the 2018 IPCC report, still ringing in our ears, feel even more urgent just now: we only have until 2030, 10 years away, to fuRead More…

Scotland’s green future? Renewables versus oil and gas

Scotland is famed for many things which include golf, castles, grouse moors, salmon, whisky, clans, haggis, tartan, bagpipes, green energy and, yes, oil and gas. All of these contribute to the national economy in a variety of ways, but with the Climate Emergency, the last two mentioned, oil and gas, are coming under the spotlight more critically. From the 1800’s Scotland’s coal industry was eRead More…

Climate Fife, Is it radical enough?

On Monday 2 December 2019, The Big Climate Conversation, hosted by Transition, was attended by people from across St Andrews as a consultation for our Council’s new Climate Fife plan. This workshop on the Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plan was organised to raise awareness and give people a chance to submit their thoughts. In response to Fife Council’s climate emergency declaration,Read More…

My Carbon Footprint

Working in Transition University of St Andrews, our job is to try and persuade folk to get out of cars and walk and cycle more, to improve their health and well-being using recycled bikes (eg. Bike Pool), to eat locally produced food instead of consuming imported food with high carbon miles (eg. Edible Campus), and despite Landfill Tax, to try and prevent items being trashed like tools (eg. Tool Read More…

Climate Change and Water

Climate change has manifest itself in many ways around the world, from record summer extreme temperatures, to the melting of the polar icecaps and glaciers, leading to sea level rises, which in turn threatens coastal cities and is leading to the disappearance of islands in the Pacific and Indian Oceans like Kiribita (Gabbatiss, 2018) and the Maldives (Union of Concerned Scientists). With the meltRead More…

Has the World enough resources to sustain the current population growth?

Can World agriculture, fisheries, aquaculture and forestry sustain burgeoning populations without habitat destruction, deforestation or species/biodiversity loss? In the late 18th century Thomas Malthus wrote ‘The power of the population is so superior to the power of the Earth to produce substance for man, that premature death must in some shape or other visit the human race.’ (Wolchover,Read More…

The importance of Biodiversity. Mankind (single species) versus nature (biomes, ecosystems, biodiversity, communities and populations of multiple species); is it a winner-takes-all contest or can we live in sustainable harmony?

Background The 1992 Earth Summit in Rio led to three Conventions a year later on Climate Change, Biological Diversity and Desertification Prevention (UN). Biodiversity can be defined as the variety of life on Earth, from the genes, species, communities, to ecosystems and processes that enable life to persist over time (SANBI). The main objectives of the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD) were tRead More…

What you can do to reduce Climate Change

By TransitionStA volunteer- Isabelle Low A Passivhaus in Fife – photo by Fiona Drummond I was prompted to write this piece by an article in the Sunday Times by Dominic Lawson, saying (accurately) that anything that we did in the UK would change only 1% at most of global emissions, most of which are produced by the USA and China. I agree with his data; I disagree fundamentally with his coRead More…

Nuclear Energy; the pros and cons

Background We are surrounded by matter, made up of atoms, each of which contains enormous amounts of energy in the bonds that hold the atom together. This energy can be released through controlled nuclear fission to produce heat, steam and ultimately electricity, or through uncontrolled fission to produce atomic bombs, like Little Boy and Fat Boy, which were dropped on Hiroshima and NagasakiRead More…

Paw print, your pet’s carbon footprint.

Pets have co-evolved with mankind for thousands of years. Domestic dogs were thought to have evolved from domesticated grey wolves in the Middle East around 15 000 years ago. Archaeological evidence shows dog bones together with human bones from 14700 years ago, but new evidence from a 35000 year old Siberian wolf bone suggests an earlier date of between 27 and 40000 years ago after the last Ice Read More…

Is the future worth a conversation?

We all know that climate change is the biggest challenge currently facing humanity and that we all need to take action now. But it is often confusing, overwhelming and hard to even talk about.   Yet talking about climate change can be one of the most powerful things you can do!  So join a group of concerned locals for a relaxed chat about Read More…