Air South West: End of an Era
Linked with the demise of Plymouth airport, Air South West have also recently ceased serving the South West. They had been a key operator from Plymouth airport but they had transferred flights to Newquay for a few months before their services ended.
1.7 billion litres less
A BBC report today states that car users have bought 15% less petrol than the same period three years ago. The fall in sales relates to the price increasing. The result of this change is £1 billion less in the treasury revenue. Tesco, announcing a trading update today, correctly identifies the high fuel cost affecting their sales. This news comes as no great shock to anyone in the transition movement and highlights the need to de-couple the economy from one that is so closely tied to hydro-carbons. The solution to the recent economic worries is to create a new economy that is truly sustainable.
After passing the peak of peak oil we will continue to see price rises and resultant damage to the economy. Businesses will soon start to learn that they should be looking at other options such as electric cars and fuel cells. Transition Totnes has noted that when the economy is affected by greatly increased oil costs, businesses may be affected by the fact that their staff may not be able to afford to get to work.
There are many natural changes happening to the natural systems in the Arctic zone. This year the sea ice has been at its second lowest level ever (after 2007), fires may be becoming more prevalent and we have an ozone hole appearing above the Arctic. The sea ice and fires are examples of positive feedback loops that are feeding upon conditions that have been emerging over several decades. The average ice extent for September 2011 was 1.78 million square miles, 938,000 square miles below the 1979 to 2000 average. For further details of the ice extent and the science behind it see National Snow and Ice Data Center (University of Colorado, Boulder). The recent trend in the decline of ice extent is rising annually, and continues to rise.
Research into an exceptional wildfire in northern Alaska in 2007, by Nature magazine, suggested that fires could become more common and emit more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere in the future. The burnt ground, being black, heats up more and adds to warming and adds to permafrost melt also releasing stored up carbon dioxide from the soil.