Climate Change Explained and Proof it’s Man Made

Climate Change Explained and Proof it’s Man Made

Narrated by the scientist who first published the hockey stick graph, made renown by Al Gore in his Inconvenient Truth, Dr. Michael E. Mann.

This is a very clear and precise explanation of Climate Change. Well presented and tackles the controversies of perception and understanding head. on, telling the struggles to dodge the climate wars fallout created by huge investment into those anti=science think-tanks by specifically the Koch brothers along with other coal and oil industry interests.

I am posting this as a great teaching resource, something to frame discussions around our collective response to these realities. We need to  dare to think radically different to come up with responses to this huge challenge and not allow ourselves to become complacent. This is thought provoking stuff.

  • Heat is radiated as Infrared light.
  • CO2 gas absorbs infrared light .
  • Therefore CO2 heats up when exposed to infrared light.
  • The earth is cooled by emission of infrared light into space.
  • The earth is kept warm by greenhouse gasses whitch absorb infrared light before it reaches space.
  • Therefore more greenhouse gasses means more infrared light absorbed, meaning more heat.
  • Combustion reactions release CO2 and water vapour.
  • These gases are greenhouse gasses, whitch absorb infrared light.
  • Therefore we expect both the concentration of CO2 and the temperature of earth to rise.
  • Scientific theory predicts rise in temperature corresponding to an increase in greenhouse gas.
  • Empirically, we observe an increase temperature corresponding to an increase in greenhouse gas.
  • Therefore, global warming is real.

£100,000 for permaculture education projects!

£100,000 for permaculture education projects!

Well here’s hoping!  Sector39 has been relatively quiet these last three months as we have been concentrating on putting together a series of project bids. The deadline for submission for the three biggest ones was yesterday, so I have been locked in mortal combat with spreadsheets, funding criteria and project evidence. Breathing a huge sigh of relief now they are all in the post.

I am not a natural fundraiser and I am also suspicious of funded projects as by their very nature they tend not to be sustainable. All that said I remain convinced that now has never been a more important time to invest in permaculture and for all involved to be much more ambitious.

Hence the decision to step out and nail our colours to the mast. We want to make a much bigger impact in our local community and our core project proposal is around working with our local high school and its 1000 students to help shape a vision for our low-carbon future. We are going to be challenging the school to map out the 20 year road to being a zero carbon school, as required by both the climate Change act and the pressing urgency to take the lead on responding to out comes of the Paris Summit.

IF we are successful then we will have the opportunity to run a three-year project across both school and community whilst developing resources and media to help communicate the projects successes and failures and challenging others to explore similar challenges.

Project two, is to build on our up coming PDC in Uganda, we don’t want it to be a one-off, we know we need to follow through with at least two more over the coming 2 years to make it really effective and to allow us to support some of the students to go on and complete their Diplomas so they can convene and certificate their own future course in East Africa. We hope to able to develop a handbook for East Africa permaculture in collaboration with our East Africa colleaues and support from our friends at Permaculture Timor Leste, who have already developed a tropical peramculture handbook.

We are also planning our own PDC programme in the UK as well as, developing teaching resources and case studies, we are also looking to be more active in co-operative development and support. With jobs and housing becoming increasingly out of reach of the rising generation then the need for more self-created opportunities is going to intensify.  Working and housing co-ops that allow people t take much more direct responsibility for themselves and allowing much more opportunity for innovation to create truly sustainable lifestyles and regenerative development that can enable us to help heal the damaged and depleted biosphere and build a climate friendly model of development.

Here’s goes nothing.. maybe we will strike out and fail in our quest.. but we have certainly tried our best. Sector39 has been supported by investment from the Robert Owen Community Bank to develop these aspirations, we are hugely grateful for the opportunity and hope that we can achieve something truly remarkable as a result!

Our Uganda fundraised has 5 days to run, and every penny raised will really count to making adifference, so please consider supporting us.

Monbiot on the Elephant, “Climate change goes deeper than capitalism”

Brilliant interview with Monbiot on the cognitive disonance that sits at the heart of our approach to the environmental crisis.
Published on 2 Feb 2016

Guardian columnist George Monbiot is one of the foremost progressive political thinkers in Britain today, one who has long put a spotlight on environmental issues, particularly those ignored by the mainstream press. He joins us The Elephant to talk about how the climate change crisis isn’t just an isolated problem, but one that is intimately intersected with other major problems we’re facing in our societies – from the run-away political power of corporations, to the rampant consumerism that dominates our culture.

Recorded for The Elephant Podcast
Host: Kevin Caners
Subscribe in iTunes:


Here is George making a recent presentation to the national parks here in the UK.

There are huge ramifications behind these ideas and it points to powerful mechanisms we can unleash to restore our horribly depleted landscapes.

Permaculture Uganda Crowdfunder

Please help us raise some support costs for this exciting project. We are workign with partners to deliver our first full PDC in Africa, and we hope this wil be part of bigger project to run 2 more over the next two years, allowing African particiapnts the chance to complete a permaculture disploma and be able to delver certificated training programmes in Uganda and Kenya.

‘There is a huge disconnect between what the climate science is telling us and policy’

‘There is a huge disconnect between what the climate science is telling us and policy’

The fact that 200 world leaders agreed at Paris that climate change is a real and pressing problem is by far the most significant outcome of the COP21 summit. Political acceptance may be there but the rest of the document signed by them has no teeth, no enforcement and only voluntary targets. It seems like we are all agreed on the looming presence of Climate Change, yet collectively unable to react to it meaningfully.

It is not about two sides to the debate, it is cognitive disonance, the dualiity is within ourselves; we understand what the science is telling us on one side but don’t like the the reprocussions on the other.  Professor Kevin Anderson

Link to Prof Kevin Anderson’s personal site

There is no doubt we need meaningful action on climate, new long term strategies. We need to see some kind of leadership, a country or union and nations with the will to articulate and implement a powerful response. I see this all of the following as key components of such a vision.

  • Rapid decarbonisation of the economy. Best way to achieve this, as suggested by James Hansen and many others is..
  • Creation of a carbon tarriff, one that is progressive, revenue neutral and uses the market mechanism to accelerate investment into renewable energy production and energy efficiency.
  • This tariff  needs to bring an end to fossil fuel use altogether within decades and send a clear market signal.
  • Creation of a carbon sequestration sector at the heart of the economy. Beyond energy generation we nned to be creating and using new carbon negative technologies and strategies for building, transportation, food production and more.
  • Strategic promotion of farming and land management strategies that sequestrate carbon, eg:  permaculture, agroecology, agrofrestry, biochar production
  • New economic paradigm. A fundamental shift in thinking away from the GDP growth models, resource driven economies to one that meets the needs of peope and planet. This would be typified by strong local economies, especially around food resource management and social care.

  Howcan permaculture design contribute in helping us raise ourselves to meet this challenge?
cardiff permaculture talkI will be presenting some of my ideas and perspectives on this at Cardiff University on March 12th.

Booking required but the event is free.

Days of revolt, excellent interview

From Jan 2016 this is a really eloquant, insightful and excellent intervew

In this episode of teleSUR’s Days of Revolt, Chris Hedges speaks with two esteemed labor activists from Detroit about the desperation caused by industrial decline and deregulation, especially amongst Black people, and attest to the necessity and inevitability of revolt under such conditions.

Permaculture Academy Proposal

This is a bold attempt to steer a new course in education and to empower students and other stakeholders to shape the long term development of their school.

Steve Jones, Jan 2016

Here at Sector39 we are putting together an exciting and what we consider to be an essential project, exploring the potential of using permaculture design to transform a whole school campus and to shift a school’s ethos and outlook to be in line with climate science. We want to create an exemplary Sustainable School to inspire and enable others to do the same.

Principle aim of this project:

To develop a permaculture curriculum accessible to educational bodies to drive a culture change proportionate to the challenges presented by climate change and to develop this in partnership with our local high school.

Completing this project will also serve to establish our wider aims of founding a permaculture academy of partners to widen our reach.


Our Organisation
Haulfre, Market Street, Llanrhaeadr Ym Mochnant, Oswestry, SY10 0JN

Sector39 is a small grass roots teaching cooperative who build community projects, sustainable enterprise and new cooperatives by bringing together designers, growers, artisans and teachers working for a sustainable future. We run courses, training and deliver public speaking, working with schools, community groups and the general public in the UK and Uganda. We raise awareness and encourage others in how to make a difference in their community and their planet.

In Association with
Cae Badfach Community Orchard- a community field donated to the people of Llanfyllin, funded by Keep Wales Tidy, Welsh Cider and Perry Society and the Local Council. Here we have started a community orchard and other initiatives with high environmental value with the help of Llanfyllin High School. Other partners include to name a few Treflach Farm, Garth Organic Garden, Dragons Cooperative, Llanfyllin Workhouse, Dolyn Ffermio, The Permanent Housing Cooperative, Cultivate Newtown and many more.

Justification for Proposal

The Pope’s recent encyclical frames the looming issues of climate change as one of morality, placing us all in a position of responsibility and challenging us to action. His statement follows on the heels of both the scientific and political heavyweights in a call to action the scale of which has never been seen before. This proposal aims to connect this urgent need for thoughtful and constructive change at a global level to meaningful action at an educational level.

Permaculture is a design process that brings about change. Addressing climate change will require long-term political, economic and social changes. To achieve an 80% reduction in carbon omissions (as required by the climate change agreement) will require a fundamental behavioural shift.

Teaching permaculture within a school or educational body will initiate changes within the school. Sector39 have been working closely with Llanfyllin High school over the last two years. We have a well established relationship with the School due to previous work done on their land-based studies GCSE as well as with the wider community of that area through the community orchard project we ran there. Sector39 have already written and delivered a trial unit on ‘energy and climate’ for Llanfyllin High School 6th form which was well received and they have expressed interest in developing their school as a ‘Sustainable School’ through permaculture design.

This project aims to form a Mid Wales Permaculture Academy, a strong regional network of permaculture teachers and practitioners, drawing on 20 years of groundwork. Drawing on this network the aim is to develop a permaculture curriculum that is accessible to educational bodies and in a way that would create a mechanism to create and drive a culture change, proportionate to the challenges presented by climate change.

Project Aims

1. Bring Permaculture Education into the Mainstream; create ‘Sustainable Leader Schools’ reaching learning objectives whilst becoming sustainable. We will work with the school on an applied Permaculture Design Course or ‘PDC’, helping all, teachers, students and community, to develop an understanding of climate change and transforming the educational body’s behaviour; reduce waste, create productive systems, reduce carbon footprints and change the behavior of students.

2. Affect policy and initiate a wider change- Demonstrate to policy makers and councils the huge potentials to change the ethos of an educational body through sustainability. Changing young minds will affect policy as those young minds become our future generation.

3. Establish a Permaculture Design Academy- Support and encourage other practitioners and pioneers. Build a coherent network linking established permaculture projects, farms and co-operatives with teachers and educators in the formal sector.

This is a 3-year project:

Sector39 aims to influence policy, curriculum content and subject delivery at all levels from school to adult learning. They hope to see an increase in educational bodies across the UK offering more sustainability, environmental subjects with links to business studies and economics. By working with key partners they will demonstrate and develop learning processes which bring permaculture design tools and skills into every sphere.

By framing business skills and processes around the realities of climate change this would accelerate a shift in sustainability practices in all areas of the economy, which will better align business and investor behaviour with environmental sustainability and the long-term public interest.

Year 1-
We will begin writing the resources we will use in educational bodies. During this time we can begin working with Llanfyllin High school, allowing students to apply the design process, creating a design to produce a ‘Sustainable Leader School’. We will create a strong connection with headteachers, management, finance department, local farms and cooperatives. Working in the local orchard; Cae Bodfach, with existing projects and previous Permaculture Design Courses. Once the design has been finalised the design presentation can include school participants, council officials and policy makers.

May-July :
To write a design for the school with the students identified for the course. Together make a timeline for the project. School trips and talks from local community permaculture projects. Activities and design trials.
Sept-December :
Presentation in early September for entire school community including stake holders and wider Llanfyllin community. Begin the project in September and complete major aspects by December.
January-May :
School write up, promotion work, prepare handover for following September starters/ induction

Year 2- In the second year we hope to work with further schools, ideally Newtown College, FE college for region, whom we have close working bonds with.

Year 3 – Long term Change.
Sector39 hopes to have excellent relationships with schools, communities, councils, educational bodies and policy makers to influence policy and help others to educate about sustainability. At this point they can use their resources to offer viable curriculum changes and begin writing online resources. Rolling out ‘Sustainable Schools’ across the UK, to change the face of our national curriculum.

Through working with its partners in farming, teaching, growing and communities across the UK, the teaching network can demonstrate real examples of how sustainable practices work and how each person can apply them.

Furthermore a permaculture course results in a practical design project as part of the final assessment and many of these projects are subsequently implemented. This means that running these courses builds the infrastructure and examples required to run more of them by creating case study examples and related infrastructure.
For example a school may implement strategies to reduce its carbon footprint, may begin growing food, composting human waste, fund new projects through capturing solar or wind energy. These design projects will be financially viable, be sustainable and act as a template for other educational bodies. These projects can be incorporated into all subjects taught by the school and improved on year after year, making the school or college more economical as time goes on.

Funding these changes within a school are not without cost but over the longer term will result in more sustainable and economic schools, reducing their financial outlays each year. This would increase the potential of each school.


We are approaching mainstream funders for support for this three year project, however it is an increasingly competitive environment out there, and funding is always pegged to very specific outcomes and timeframes. Consequently our ambition is to raise funds directly from supporters, to give us more freedom and flexibility to run the project according to ours and the school priorities.

Figures are available for a breakdown of planned expenditure.

Who will work on this project?

Sector39 aim to utilise those already working voluntarily for Sector39, as well as Dragons Cooperative, Llanfyllin High School, the Cae Bodfach project and the North Wales community.

Partnership building is an essential part of permaculture design academy process. Sector39 has an extensive list of 18 current stakeholders for the Permaculture Design academy. They are a varied and wide reaching group of professional people already involved in their network, who will make this project viable.

Sector39 will share the lessons learned from their work with others through PDC’s, the online resources, in schools and colleges, on social media and through their community base in North Wales, as well as encouraging the replication of their work both nationally and internationally with those that want to encourage the education and action against climate change in the UK and abroad.

How can you help?

Sector39 plan to fundraise to support Llanfyllin High School in its first year of this project.

Please contact Sector39 on the contact information at the top of this proposal, if you feel you can help in any way or have any suggestions for this project.

Please like and share this idea through social media to show your support and please contact us if you would like to donate or get involved with our fundraising initiatives.