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Showing posts from June, 2017

Opportunity and Uncertainty: Exploring the Transition to a Low Carbon World

“EUREKA!”, I cried, jumping from the bath. No, I hadn’t re-discovered the theory of displacement, but I had come up with an innovative solution to the climate crisis.

From my bathroom window I could see a huge flock of seagulls squawking, swooping and beating their wings. Tens of thousands more live in the English coastal city of Brighton that I call home, attracted by fast-food munching tourists and our less than wonderful refuse service. Experimental high altitude kites are now generating renewable electricity – surely, we could do something similar here and power the world with 100% renewable seagull energy!

The shortcomings of my idea soon become clear. Aside from the obvious practical and ethical issues, the fact remains that, whilst common in Brighton, seagulls are comparatively rare in the UK. Indeed, they’re ‘red listed’ with their numbers in decline. The dream of a seagull powered world, or even UK, was not to be.

This bird-brained idea highlights a more serious challenge fo…