Sunday, July 22, 2018

Cli-fi mentions in foreign countries and non-English languages -- a series of global links to a growing international literary genre

De opmars van SF en cli-fi: 

wat als sciencefiction 

akelig dichtbij komt?

'Dystopische' fictie doet mensen 
steeds meer nadenken over 
de gevolgen van vooruitgang
 - by Catherine Ongenae / Belgium
In de filmwereld zijn science-fiction en fantasy de populairste genres, maar wie onder die stempel een boek publiceert, pleegt literaire zelfmoord. Tijd voor een re-branding? Oscar van Gelderen, uitgever bij Lebowski, meent van wel. ‘De lezer is rijp voor visionaire literatuur.’

''La politica en la era humana''
by Gabriel Flores, July 1, 2018Este contenido ha sido publicado originalmente por Diario EL COMERCIO en la siguiente dirección:

5 clés pour comprendre la "cli-fi", cette nouvelle façon de parler du changement climatique

Reconnue aux États-Unis, la "fiction climatique" reste encore discrète en France. Passer par le récit semble pourtant efficace pour éveiller les consciences aux dangers climatiques.

''CLIMATE FICTION. Racconti di Fantameteo'' short stories by Aldo Meschiari in Italy in Italian Copertina rigida – 2006


Friday, July 20, 2018

My personal 4-minute video reaction to Roy Scranton's essay collection "We're Doomed. Now What?"

Climate activist and founder of ''The Cli-Fi Report'' Danny Bloom speaks for 4 minutes here:

English professor and climate activist Roy Scranton published his new nonfiction book of climate essays titled ''We're Doomed. Now What?" in July 2018 and here is my personal bedside 4-minute late-at-night video reaction to his doomsday message.

I like Roy and I like his book: he is a very good writer and thinker. But in his new book of essays, I feel he goes too far in his doomsday pronouncements and his timeline for ''the shit that will hit the fan'' is much too early and premature. [IMHO.]

The bad stuff won't happen for another 500 years.

I'm not an alarmist. I'm a doomer and gloomer and Bloomer who takes the long view on all this, another 30 generations before The End, so there's time to prepare future generations (our descendants, and Roy's great great great grandchildren times 30) for what they will be facing in 500 years. Not now. His daughter's life will be normal.

Life will go on in the next 100 and 200 years just like it is today. The End is not nigh.

But it is coming, and it will come with a deathly tragic-ness. But 30 generations from now.

That's my long view, Roy.

And this video is mostly for Roy to listen to and react to. I am not trying to persuade anyone to my point of view. Each to his or her own POV.

But this is how I see things, and I have thought long and hard about all this.

That's why I created the cli-fi term for novelists and movie directors to use a literary and cinematic platform to tell their stories, whatever stories they choose to tell. 

Godspeed everyone, even though there is not God, no gods, no angels, no Buddha, no recincarnation and no afterlife.

We come this way but once, and we should all try to make the most of it. I'm doing my best, too. I hope you are, too.

My  personal 4-minute video reaction to Roy Scranton's essay collection "We're Doomed. Now What?"

Thursday, July 19, 2018

James Bridle on dealing with situations like climate change (from an interview for his new book ''NEW DARK AGE'')

James Bridle on dealing with situations like climate change (from an interview for his new book ''NEW DARK AGE'')

Question: ......How do you deal with situations like climate change, where you need really large-scale systemic change?
James Bridle: ''There’s a couple of things I talk about regarding climate in the book, and one of them is to be really, really super direct about the actual threat of it, which is horrific, and it’s kind of so horrific that it’s difficult for us to think about. Simply the act of articulating that — making it really, really clear, exploring some of the implications of it — that kind of realism is a super necessary act.''
''We’re still fighting this rear-guard action of, “Oh, it’s manageable,” “Oh, we can mitigate it,” or “It’s not really real.” We’re still, despite everything we know, everything people say, stuck in this ridiculous bind where we seem incapable of taking any kind of action. And, for me, that’s part and parcel of this continuous argument we have over numbers and facts and figures and the data and information that we’re gathering, as though this is some kind of argument that has to be won before we do anything. That excludes the possibility of doing anything concrete and powerful and present.''

Artist and writer James Bridle’s book ''New Dark Age'' contends that an overload of information has hurt our ability to understand the world. It was released in the USA on July 17, 2018

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

How do we process doom-and-gloom climate news? How should we?

[Audio report from PRI]
How do we process doom-and-gloom climate news? How should we?
Livable Planet
Frightening stories about climate change seem to come in a never-ending wave these days.

In just the past week, we've learned that Antarctica is melting three times faster than it was a decade ago, rising seas might flood more than 300,000 USA homes twice a month within decades, and that India is facing the worst water crisis in its history.

How do our brains respond to this onslaught of negative news?
Not well.

"Climate change has all the hallmarks of an issue which is difficult for people to engage with psychologically," says Lorraine Whitmarsh, professor of environmental psychology at the University of Cardiff in Wales.  

People perceive the risks of climate change "as both considerably uncertain and also as being mostly in the future and geographically distant, all factors that lead people to discount them," according to a 2009 American Psychological Association report on the topic.

In other words, the worst impacts of climate change feel far away - in both time and place - to many Americans. So while it will increasingly impact all of us, every day, it's hard for us to get worked up about it.

So do news stories with frightening projections about the future prod us to action, or make us stick our heads in the sand?

It's a debated topic in psychology, and some recent research suggests there's not enough evidence to empirically say whether or not "arousing fear" is an effective way to communicate the risks of climate change. But other psychologists argue we know enough to say scare tactics don't work when it comes to engaging the public.

"What we know from psychological studies is that if you overuse fear-inducing imagery, what you get is fear and guilt in people, and this makes people more passive, which counteracts engagement," Norwegian psychologist and author of "What We Think About When We Try Not To Think About Global Warming," Per Espen Stoknes, told YaleEnvironment360.

So what does work in effectively communicating the risks of climate change?

Making it personal, Whitmarsh says. "Talk to people about the impacts of climate change on things that are important to them, things that they value," Whitmarsh tells The World. "They may be family, or their local area, or objects or areas that are important to them, rather than talking about distant regions."

When it comes to changing behaviors that impact the environment, Whitmarsh has found it's often more effective not to raise the issue of climate change at all.

"If you want people to save energy, reduce the amount of meat they're consuming, reduce the amount of flights they're taking, for example, you don't necessarily need to make an environmental or climate change argument to get them to do that," Whitmarsh says.

Explain the economic argument for using less energy, for example, or the health benefits of eating less meat. Some research has shown, for example, that real-time energy usage readings help people use less energy.  

"Emphasizing those (personal benefits) when you're communicating and trying to persuade people to change their behaviour is more likely to be effective," Whitmarsh says.

Accentuate the positive
It's a tactic climate scientist Peter Kalmus takes in his book, "Being the Change: Live Well and Spark a Climate Revolution."

Kalmus writes about his experience cutting his carbon footprint to a tenth of what it once was by giving up flying and eating meat, taking up biking, and scavenging and growing his own food. These changes not only helped him live more sustainably, it also made him happier and feel more connected to his community.

"There was a lot about it that I liked, that I would do even if there wasn't a climate emergency," Kalmus says, including biking, gardening, and converting his car to run on waste vegetable oil. "I really enjoyed all of these things."

Kalmus, a climate scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California who speaks on his own behalf and not for NASA, tells The World that he had an "unpleasant wake-up call" when he started learning more about climate change and decided to switch his field of study from astrophysics to atmospheric science.

"I was kind of shaking people by the proverbial lapels and telling them 'We need to stop burning fossil fuels,'" Kalmus said. "And then I realized 'Hey, I'm not actually doing that myself.' So maybe I can reduce my own use of fossil fuel."

About eight years ago he sat down to take stock of his own personal CO2 emissions. He found that flying produced about three-quarters of his 20-ton annual carbon footprint, and in 2012, he gave up flying. He still travels with his wife and kids - they just opt for trips within California and, about once a year, drive their bio-fueled car or take the train to visit family in Chicago, camping along the way.

Kalmus recognizes that not everyone can easily bike to work, or give up flying altogether.

But he says an easy first step for those interested in cutting their carbon footprint is sitting down to do a personal CO2 audit.

"Figure out how your actions are connected to CO2," he says, can help you pinpoint the biggest steps you can take to reduce your CO2 emissions. "So hopefully people can find something that makes them happier and also reduces their footprint. And then that's a sustainable change, and hopefully they'll be eager to try taking the second step."

One person can't fight climate change alone. But Kalmus hopes he'll be an example others can follow.

"What I'm doing is trying to push for a cultural shift," Kalmus says. "As more and more people start demanding alternatives to the fossil-fueled infrastructure, I think the systems will start to catch up."

Monday, July 16, 2018

If in fact Climate Change is behind the global heat wave, then Why won't the media say it?

If in fact Climate Change is behind the global heat wave, then Why won't the media say it?

[Dept of Media competence]

Climate change is behind the global heat wave. Why won't the media say it?

JUL 15, 2018

Climate change is behind the global heat wave. Why won't the media say it?

Last week's heat wave brought record temperatures to Southern California. Hot winds blew fire into my community in Santa Barbara County, ripping through a dozen homes and threatening hundreds more.
I tuned into the local news channel, where reporters reminded viewers that we had just finished a record-breaking fire season. They strained to list all the fires we'd had over the past decade. There were too many to recall.
Fires are happening a lot more often across California. You can't accurately call it a fire "season" anymore. The season is year-round.
But journalists who report on the fires or heat waves rarely acknowledge this reality. Last week, the local newscasters in my area never did, even though it has a very familiar name: climate change.
The same is true of the media at large. Although it reports on each fresh disaster - every fire, every hurricane, every flood - it tends to stop short of linking extreme weather events to global warming, as though the subject were the exclusive province of reporters on the climate beat.
The science is clear. Journalists need to start using it.
As a result, we're missing what is arguably the biggest story of all: The climate we knew is no more. We've already warmed the planet, whether we deny it or not.

It's not hard to spot global warming in the news. If you're looking, its marks are everywhere. Right now, southern Japan is flooded. Two months' worth of rain fell in five days, a day's worth in an hour. Mudslides followed. More than 200 are dead, more are missing, millions are displaced.
But to get the larger story about extreme weather events, you have to read between the headlines.
There is no sound justification for this. Not anymore. Scientists have been churning out evidence of human-caused climate change for more than a century. Some are figuring out exactly how much to blame global warming for any given weather event. They're getting really good at it.

We can now link many recent disasters and weather events to climate change. We know, for instance, that more than three-quarters of moderate heat waves are connected to warming. We also know that, were it not for climate change, fires in the West would have burned half as much land since the 1980s. Scientists have been documenting the increase in extreme rain events in Japan since the early 1990s.
There are reasons they haven't. Reporters are trained to distinguish weather from climate. They are also conditioned to avoid the appearance of political bias, and a decades-long campaign to sow doubt about global warming has cast a partisan aura on the facts.

But with a bit of nuance, journalists can carefully identify the pattern. Any weather event has multiple causes. More and more, climate change is one of them, and its share of blame is growing.

The public is not entirely in the dark. In fact, research by Peter D. Howe, a geographer at Utah State University, shows that 60% of people in 89 countries correctly perceive that temperatures where they live have warmed over time. According to a study by the political scientists Matto Mildenberger and Dustin Tingley, most Americans underestimate how many people share their belief that climate change is real. Most of us know this is not a drill, and most of us want our government to do more.

We all need to do more. Countries around the world need to go beyond the commitments made in Paris. We need more wind and solar energy. We need states to keep nuclear plants open when they are safe, because they already produce clean energy. We need to stop rolling back renewable energy laws, as my research has documented in Ohio, Texas and Arizona.

But we won't do any of this until we can see what's happening. Journalists play a critical role in helping the public to make these connections. They need to start telling the whole story.
Leah C. Stokes (@leahstokes) is an assistant professor of environmental politics at UC Santa Barbara.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

LIBERATION: Olivier Postel-Vinay, directeur du magazine «Books», et «cli-fi» (prononcez «claï- faï»)


A French newspaper

Mr. Olivier Postel-Vinay, directeur du magazine «Books», et «cli-fi» (prononcez «claï- faï») .....


Par Olivier Postel-Vinay Fondateur et directeur du magazine «Books»— 22 août 2015 à 16:24

1300 romans de 'climat fiction'

Le genre a un nom : «cli-fi» (prononcez «claï- faï»). Ce sont les romans dystopiques sur le climat. 1300 titres recensés sur Amazon. Tous les clichés du catastrophisme écologiste se pressent au portillon. Une aubaine pour de jeunes auteurs, qui aspirent aussi à voir leur essai transformé à l’écran, dans le sillage d’un Christopher Nolan ou d’une Margaret Atwood. Le terme «cli-fi» a été lancé en 2007 par l’écrivain militant Dan Bloom. Atwood l’a repris à son compte dans un tweet, attirant d’un coup ses 500 000 followers. Le genre attire un nouveau public de jeunes lecteurs sensibilisés à la question du réchauffement climatique. L’université de Cambridge a ouvert une formation en «cli-fi». 
Source : The Atlantic, 14 août 2015, 9300 signes. L’auteur : J.K. Ullrich est romancière. Elle a publié une fiction climatique, Blue Karma, au printemps 2015.

"What can we do about climate change?" is a question best left to cli-fi novelists and film directors, not so-called PhD "experts" ....

"What can we do about climate change?" is a question best left to cli-fi novelists and film directors, not so-called PhD "experts" ....