This is how it begins, the very first email for my newsletter. I hope this will be an interesting monthly-ish entry into your inbox that highlights information and opinion as it relates to climate change policy broadly! I’ll be playing around with length and format - opting to keep this one shorter. I chose the name Sprawl Crawl for two main reasons: Firstly, all the good weather and heat related names were taken. Secondly, as an eco-socialist a lot of my daily thinking is about land use by humans, we sprawl out in many ways. Thirdly (and finally) - the word “crawl” has always instilled a sense of unrelenting motion to me. To me I think of ancient glaciers moving across what are now our continents, or perhaps a car without it’s handbrake enabled slowly rolling down a driveway.
My first real introduction to thinking about humanity’s sprawl crawl came from an unexpected place for me - Joe Rogan. In high school a friend and I decided to rent “Joe Rogan Live” from our local Blockbuster as we were curious what the host of NBC’s Fear Factor talked about in his stand up. In all honesty it wasn’t for us - but what was particularly interesting to us was Joe Rogan’s theory on life and people (click here to watch a short clip). Some of you reading this may agree with me that what Rogan has to say is surprisingly compelling - until he makes the nihilistic statement that human’s are here to fuck shit up. I regularly think about how popular Joe Rogan is with his podcast that has millions of listeners - and I worry about what it means for us and the planet if people can recognize the harmful effects of humanity’s sprawl and simply not care.
With that background aside - let’s move onto some curation! Each month I hope to provide you with links to additional readings, videos, podcast episodes and more that I feel deserve your attention and reflection.
Firstly, the organization I work for is part of a community coalition pushing for a Just Recovery from the pandemic - this effort is laying out precisely what the City of Hamilton (and let’s be real, all cities) must prioritize as we recover from COVID-19. Will our City Council listen? Will city staff? Stay tuned!
Subscribe to Diana Yoon’s newsletter “Dwell & Drizzle” - I wouldn’t have started this one if Diana didn’t take the initial plunge. Diana is great - you will not regret reading her newsletter!
Check out the piece I wrote for Downtown Sparrow’s “From The Nest” newsletter about public transit! There’s some other great pieces too!
Does carbon pricing reduce emissions? Well according to this new paper by the fantastic Jessica Green of University of Toronto - not nearly enough.
The Caspian Sea - the worlds largest lake that borders several countries - is shrinking considerably, with experts warning that ecocide is imminent. No other place on our planet is like the Caspian Sea, and we’re watching it’s demise in our lifetimes. If you’re not familiar with the Caspian Sea, here’s how big it is (historically) compared to some other lakes you may know:
Finally, on a lighter note my favourite YouTube plant expert “Crime Pays But Botany Doesn’t” has a fantastic new video out about invasive plants - and the plants that parasitize those plants. Check it out!