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Robert WalkerRSS Feed of this column.

I'm Robert Walker, inventor & programmer. I have had a long term special interest in astronomy, and space science since the 1970s, and most of these blog posts currently are about Mars and space... Read More »


From time to time we get larger solar storms. One of the last major ones was the one in March 1989 geomagnetic storm which caused a nine hour power cut in Quebec. That happened because they weren’t prepared for it. Modern power supplies are hardened against this, making such events much less likely.

There were earlier studies suggesting widespread damage to transformers which could cause months to years to repair, widespread power supply problems that would take a long time to resolve, and trillions of dollars of damage, so a large economic impact.

This is for people who worry that the Democrats in the USA will never come to agreement on their climate policies. It’s tough work for them, because they have to get agreement of 50 senators, even one abstention and they will lose the vote.

IMHO this is also a strength- the bill is getting intense scrutiny. Everyone’s concerns need to be listened to. Joe Manchin seems genuine and he represents centrist politicians in the USA - a bill is more likely to work if he is behind it too.

How to motivate your self, and others to act on climate change, biodiversity or anything else - tips from psychology

This talk may help you if you are thinking about how to motivate both yourself and others, and also governments, to act on climate change, biodiversity loss or indeed anything. The way you might do it instinctively, to focus on all the negatives that need to be fixed, is actually not the best approach. Psychologists call this negative framing.

Psychology says, in order to create engagement, we should present, on balance, three positive or supportive framings for each climate threat we mention.

Epsen Stokes, 8:49 into this video.

Covid experts around the world respond to the UK’s decision to lift remaining restrictions on July 19 in an emergency online summit.

They say no public health officer would recognize this as a strategy.

This article as a tweet thread, including the short video clips of experts making their main points.


What is UK's plan B if another more transmissible or severe or vaccine evading variant emerges at 100,000 cases a day? The UK by relaxing its restrictions even more at high cases per day encourages new variants including homegrown variants.

There is a light at the end of the tunnel. The marvelous new vaccines ensure that, with new 2nd and 3rd generation even more effective vaccines on their way.

. Light at the end of the tunnel - we will get out of this pandemic, how quickly we get there is up to us - case of “vaccines and” not “vaccines only”

"That’s what viruses do, they evolve, but we can prevent the emergence of variants by preventing transmission. It’s quite simple. More transmission, more variants. Less transmission, less variants."


Dr Tedros (Director General of the WHO)

(click to watch on Youtube)