Links of the Week: November 12, 2021: COP Out?

Links of the Week: November 12, 2021: COP Out?

5 min read


Can museums engage with climate realism so that it's not all up to their workers to do so?

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First, just a short follow-up link from Harvard Business Review on the topic of boundaries, the subject of Tuesday's Museum Human post.

When you've just finished Hannah Arendt's The Origins of Totalitarianism and can note the signs of dangerous movements that can be a preview of later terror, it's hard to objectively find signs of hope and action in the museum field. (Check out my post-election pieces, "Museums in an Age of Redux" from last year and "A Year of Shattered Expectations" from 2016. If you want other post-election and economic links, read the Guardian, Umair Haque on Medium, Jared A. Brock on Medium, The Hill, Truthout here [also here and here], and the Atlantic here.)

And now, onto the climate, which I first wrote about at length last year as part of our three crises, then added this piece on collapse back in September. Here's a whole lotta links, starting with what the museum field is doing:

My search for people willing to endure the costs and forgo the benefits of turbines for the sake of the common, planetary good only partly failed. I did not find anyone willing to undertake that sacrifice, but I also discovered that [the village]’s wind farms do not serve the common good. Occasionally people asked me, “Why, if these turbines are producing clean energy, is the oil refinery in Algeciras still polluting our air?” Though the question conflated different uses of energy, it contained an essential truth. Rather than replacing fossil fuels, wind farms are supplementing them. Spain’s nuclear plants, which also worry the villagers, continue splitting atoms almost at an even clip. At best, renewables hold pollution to a steady stream. This is the global story of wind and solar power. In 2012 every 10 megawatts of renewably generated electricity displaced at most 1 megawatt derived from fossil fuels. Meanwhile, panels and blades illuminate empty rooms, cool half-empty fridges, and otherwise fuel high-energy, wasteful lifestyles. Certainly, electric companies—in just about any jurisdiction—do not want people to buy fewer megawatts.

Finally, there's less than a week to fill out the brief Museum Human survey on the status of your hybrid/remote work!

Museum remote/hybrid work check-in
Museum Human last surveyed readers in June about institutional remote work/hybrid policies. A few months later, it’s time for a check-in. If you’re working in a museum, please answer these few short questions. Results will be published in mid-November 2021.

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cover photo by NOAA / Unsplash [description: a bolt of lightning from a dark purple sky on a road up ahead]


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Links of the Week: November 12, 2021: COP Out? by Robert J Weisberg is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

I work on a bit of everything in museum content. I find human solutions to tech problems. I geek out on workflow. No, really. I learn and teach and write everything down.