Keystone Essay

Global Warming and the Destruction of the Earth

Extinction Rebellion activist sign
Extinction Rebellion activist sign – Sydney Australia 8/13/2019

Global warming is the most pressing symptom that human beings are not even remotely good stewards of their only home, planet Earth. It is not as though we have only recently come on the science, the data, the obvious changes in weather. In 1896 the Swedish scientist Svante Arrhenius calculated the effect of a doubling atmospheric carbon dioxide to be an increase in surface temperatures of 5–6 degrees Celsius. Scientists in the oil industry, specifically Exxon (now Exxon Mobil) wrote memos to their corporate chieftains in 1977 stating that burning fossil fuels, coal, oil, and natural gas, were contributing to an increase in the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere and increase the average temperature of the earth’s atmosphere.

[essay incomplete – 9/6/2019]

Posts about the environment, global warming, pollution….

Briefly Noted, Empire, Environment

Why are we spending $1.5 trillion on nuclear weapons?

November 26, 2023

The December 2023 issue of Scientific American contains three articles and an editorial about our nuclear weapons production, plans to spend tons of money “modernizing it”, and the environmental consequences. BOOM TIMES: The new costs—and long shadow—of living in a nuclear nation. by Abe Streep SIDE THE PIT FACTORY: For the first time in decades the U.S. is ramping up production of plutonium cores for nuclear weapons. by Sarah Scoles SACRIFICE ZONES: What happens if —>> read more –>>


Deep Sea Mining & Externalities – a favorite

April 24, 2023

Several years ago, I came on the news that deep-sea mining for nodules of nickel, cobalt, and other rare minerals was about to commence. I found a video from MIT discussing the issues surrounding this practice, Mining the Deep Sea, (link opens YouTube video) The ocean’s deep-sea bed is scattered with ancient, potato-sized rocks called “polymetallic nodules” that contain nickel and cobalt — minerals that are in high demand for the manufacturing of batteries, such as —>> read more –>>


  1. Jennifer Chu, “Ocean Scientists Measure Sediment Plume Stirred up by Deep-Sea-Mining Vehicle,” MIT News | Massachusetts Institute of Technology, September 21, 2022,
Capitalism, Economy, Education, Empire, Environment, Healthcare, Inequality, Politics, Racism/White Supremacy, Security State, Women

My Year End Siege of Angers – the list

January 1, 2023

Yesterday as I was taking a walk up and down Warren St. here in Hudson I realized that I had become actively angry about the state of the US and the world. I walked past hotels where a single room would set you back $400 for a night or you could go for the suite that is a mere $1300. This in a country where 32% of the people can’t pay an unexpected $400 bill.1 —>> read more –>>


  3. see the empirical study Martin Gilens, Affluence and Influence: Economic Inequality and Political Power in America (Princeton, N.J; New York: Princeton University Press ; Russell Sage Foundation, 2012).
  11. and
Capitalism, Environment, Videos-Movies-Podcasts

Recently Noted – the chemical industry, government, and personal connections to TCE

March 1, 2020

Back in the early and mid ‘70s both Karen and I worked in various machine shops and other industrial locations. Trichloroethylene (TCE) was used on a daily basis to clean metals parts and other materials. I remember a large tank of slowly roiling hot TCE at Stevens Arnold, Inc. in South Boston. I would use it several times a day to clean parts. Every week or so I would be detailed to drain the tank, —>> read more –>>


  1. accessed 3/1/2020
Briefly Noted, Environment, Videos-Movies-Podcasts

The Great Recycling Con video story – recently noted

December 9, 2019

Over 90% of plastic materials in consumer items and packaging end up in landfill dumps. Time for industry to take responsibility for their waste.

Briefly Noted, Environment

Recently Noted – Your Burger vs. Transatlantic Flight – how much CO2?

October 4, 2019

The New Yorker published “Value Meal: Impossible Foods wants to save the world by inventing a better burger” by Tad Friend in the 9/30/2019 issue. During the introductory paragraphs the following statistic was cited: Every four pounds of beef you eat contributes to as much global warming as flying from New York to London—and the average American eats that much each month.

Environment, Project Blog

A Major Shift in Emphasis – the environment

September 6, 2019

Friday 9/6/2019 Over the last several months I have been working on a restatement of the fundamental characteristics of the capitalist system. In doing this I have been thinking afresh about the current crisis of global warming and the surrounding environmental disasters of species extinction and the general defacement of the earth. I will complete this restatement shortly. Meanwhile I have rearranged the section of the website devoted to the environment to a more prominent —>> read more –>>

Capitalism, Environment, Politics

Plastics and Run Amuck Capitalism

August 20, 2018

The earth is burdened by the tsunami of plastic refuse that will never degrade. Government needs to protect us from capitalist enterprises delight in externalizing costs to our detriment and their short-term benefit.

Briefly Noted, Environment

Recently Noted: The Environment under Trump – from National Geographic

November 5, 2017

The National Geographic has a running list of the Trump regime’s efforts to save the environment for capitalism. A Running List of How Trump Is Changing the Environment –  “The Trump administration has promised vast changes to U.S. science and environmental policy—and we’re tracking them here as they happen.”

Environment, Politics

The Environment, Trump, Koch Brothers & Big Money

June 5, 2017

The now publicly visible campaign by the Koch brothers and many others to make their decade’s long campaign to deny climate change bear new fruit in public policy. More evidence that the plutocrats are now so secure in their control over our politics and the government that they can come out of the shadows and rule directly through Trump.

Capitalism, Environment

Dumping Concrete: a law of capitalism In action – a local example

May 6, 2017

Every company seeks to get someone else to pay for as many of its costs of doing business as possible. The laws of capitalism require this. If all of Stickles’ competitors are similarly avoiding the costs of disposing of their waste concrete they must do likewise. Otherwise their cost of doing business would be higher. In the short term their profits will be lower. In the longer term they will be forced out of business —>> read more –>>

Environment, Videos-Movies-Podcasts


March 4, 2017

This 2015 movie by Chinese director Liang Zhao is filled with great cinematography and sounds. It trades back and forth between scenes of enormous horizon gulping coal mines, under ground mines, iron making, and ends with scenes of a ghost city filled with enormous apartment blocks in a newly developed but vacant city West of Beijing. But, the most arresting part of the movie is its focus on the workers, men and women, in this —>> read more –>>


Greenland and Global Warming

June 2, 2002

an essay from the original website: Greenland and Global Warming When I looked down into the Grand Canyon for the first time, I paused only for a moment at its immensity and moved right onto a more self-centered thought, “How tiny human history is in all of this, and even further, how much less significant my own life must be by extension.” It is clear that human beings will not outlast Nature. An article —>> read more –>>

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply