Below are news items from the UBC IRES community.

Messaging, visual cues can reduce the use of plastic produce bags, says study from UBC prof

Dr. Jiaying Zhao found that visual cues or motivational messages in grocery stores can reduce the use of plastic produce bags.

Yes, happiness and climate action can go together

Dr. Jiaying Zhao explained how we can use our understanding of behaviour to incorporate happiness into meaningful climate action.

Can the heat from running computers help grow our food? It’s complicated

PhD candidate Sarah-Louise Ruder co-wrote about the benefits and drawbacks of capturing the heat emitted by computing hardware and reusing it to grow crops indoors.

Managing Metro Vancouver’s water supply as global temperatures rise

Dr. Kai Chan commented on the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which found that climate change will affect our water supply.

UBC prof discusses new approaches to eco-climate crisis

Dr. Kai Chan discusses eco-climate activism and the roles of academics in this cause.

‘Rights of nature’ movement gains steam in Pacific Northwest. Can it help species on the brink?

Dr. David Boyd said the U.S. rights-of-nature legal framework is a response to the modern-day categorization of nature as a form of property.

Do we have less than 10 years to address climate change?

Dr. Simon Donner of IRES discussed the use of artificial intelligence to predict the future of Earth's climate.

Some of the waste dumped on Cultus Lake area farmland came from Surrey green bins

Dr. Jiaying Zhao of IRES commented on the problem of dealing with contaminated green waste.

‘We’re still on the bunny slopes’: As 2023 kicks off, is Canada’s climate change plan aggressive enough?

Dr. Simon Donner noted that Canada's climate policies are not aggressive enough.

These Metro Vancouver businesses want to make it easier for you to hold onto your clothes longer

Psychology professor Dr. Jiaying Zhao of IRES said the repair economy is the next thing in the circular economy to reduce waste.

6 new climate policies anticipated for B.C. in 2023

A report by IRES land and food systems research associate Matthew Mitchell looked into how Canada can reach its biodiversity targets by 2030.

The first stage of Canada’s plastics ban is now in place. Here’s how it affects you

Dr. Jiaying Zhao commented on Canada's single-use plastic ban policy.

Globalised food systems are making hunger worse

Al Jazeera mentioned a 2018 study from IRES and school of public policy and global affairs which found that farm-level biodiversity has decreased as farms have grown bigger.

Canada’s single-use plastic ban takes effect on Dec. 20. Here’s what to know

IOF research associate Dr. Juan Jose Alava and IRES professor Dr. Jiaying Zhao discussed Canada's ban on the manufacture and import for sale of single-use plastics.

Here are 5 things to know about COP15 and how it affects B.C.

IRES's Dr. David Boyd and forestry professor Dr. Peter Arcese explained how discussions in the world’s largest biodiversity summit known as COP15 will affect B.C.

Egypt’s tolerance to climate change saves ‘coral worldwide’

IRES's Dr. Simon Donner noted the signs of damage to corals in Sharm el-Sheikh.

‘No safe place’: Kiribati seeks donors to raise islands from encroaching seas

Dr. Simon Donner said that with a lower rate of sea level rise it is possible for Kiribati to survive but it’s unclear how the communities will survive without a huge investment in adaptation.

Cop27: coral conservation groups alarmed over ‘catastrophic losses’

Dr. Simon Donner noted the signs of disease and possible heat-related damage to corals in Sharm el-Sheikh.

Barrick Gold under fire by UN for toxic spills from Veladero mine in Argentina

Dr. David Boyd of IRES was mentioned for signing a UN letter to Barrick Gold, the Canadian government and others, expressing concern about toxic spills from the Veladero mine in Argentina.

Delegates return from COP 27 with lots of questions about where we are heading on climate

IRES PhD student Rudri Bhatt shared her experience attending COP27.

Global map depicts mammal movement between protected areas

Research led by IRES research associate Dr. Angela Brennan found that Canada is both a world leader in animal connectivity and home to many areas critical to animal movement.

Using the ocean to fight climate change raises serious environmental justice and technical questions

IRES Professor Dr. Terre Satterfield co-wrote about why using the ocean to fight climate change has serious environmental justice and technical concerns.

BC Is In A Crazy Drought And Scientists Say Climate Change Is To Blame

Dr. Kai Chan of IRES said hotter, drier summers, drought and fires are consistent with what climate scientists have been saying we should expect

people swimming in an outdoor pool with a factory looming in the background

Professors call for more research into climate-change related threats to civilization

An opinion piece published today in the Proceedings of the National Academic of Sciences, a peer-reviewed journal of the National Academy of Sciences, urgently calls for more research into the specific pathways by which civilization could potentially collapse due to climate change. “Scientists have warned that climate change threatens the habitability of large regions of […]

See Which Countries Have the Most Interconnected Wildlife Preserves

Dr. Angela Brennan, research associate in the UBC Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability, discussed her research which found more than 65 percent of passages between protected areas where animal movements are most concentrated remain unprotected.

girl holding flowers

The flower industry has a thorny environmental problem — and plastic is just part of it

And while a bouquet might seem like low climate impact gift, there's quite a bit of unspoken damage in the industrial farming of flowers.

‘It was obviously shocking in the best way possible’: Patagonia pledges profits to the Earth

Dr. Kai Chan, professor in the Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability and the Institute for Oceans and Fisheries, commented on the donation of Patagonia to an environmental non-profit, including similar actions in the company's history.

Bidets are making a splash with Canadians worried about waste

Bidets might seem like they're a waste of water, but the amount of water they use is absolutely negligible compared to the water that goes into making toilet paper.

The UN just recognized access to a healthy environment is a universal human right. It’s time for Canada to take action

Institute For Resources, Environment and Sustainability, Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries, school of public policy and global affairs, and mechanical engineering researchers Dr. David Boyd, Dr. Kai Chan, Dr. Amanda Giang and Dr. Navin Ramankutty wrote about the need for Canada to take action to ensure that all Canadians have the right to live in a clean, healthy and sustainable environment. Dr. Boyd is also the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment.

Canada ranks high for mammal movement between protected areas

Research associate Dr. Angela Brennan (Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability) discussed her research on how mapping animal movement could help protect biodiversity across the world.

Canadians could soon have the legal right to a healthy environment. But can it be enforced?

Dr. David R. Boyd (Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability; school of public policy and global affairs) explained the importance of adopting the UN resolution on the right to a healthy environment.

UK has ‘moral duty’ to improve air pollution

David Boyd talks about how the UK has a moral duty to improve air pollution

Could lab-grown meat ever be Indigenized?

Atlanta Grant, an Indigenous master's student at UBC, was quoted in an article exploring the implications of lab-grown meat.

Reducing your waste

Psychology professor Dr. Jiaying Zhao (Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability) discussed one way to reduce clothing waste.