Converging Environmental Crises Teach-In

The Ohio State University Department of Public Health is sponsoring a web-based teach-in today, which they would like TOD readers to help publicize.

Converging Environmental Crises:
A Teach-In on Energy, Climate Change, Water, Agriculture and Population

Thursday, April 10, 2008
11:00am to 4:00pm EDT

It's free!! Gail's talk is up already at the link above, as are (or will be) talks by Friends of TOD Rep Roscoe Bartlett, Dan Bednarz, Jason Bradford and Bill Catton. There is also a live link to the teach-in as well. If you are having difficulty connecting, the last page of this PDF gives some troubleshooting tips. It doesn't work with Safari, and you cannot be using pop-up blocker, among other things. It may not work if you are behind a firewall.

More information about the Teach-in at this link:

I have had difficulty viewing the live streaming. I think they have bandwidth issues.

The recorded talks are not a problem. The names of the presenters are shown, but not the topics. This is my mini-guide.

Roscoe Bartlett has a nice peak oil introduction. He has made a number of posters, and uses them to illustrate the issues.

Bill Catton talks about overshoot related topics. His is the longest talk. It is a little slow starting, but gets better over time.

I (Gail Tverberg) talk about "The Expected Economic Impact on an Energy Downturn". The text is somewhat different/longer than what was originally up at TOD. I have changed the original post to show the new text. This is a PDF of the text.

I have not viewed the others. In the order they show up on the browser list:

Jason Bradford is from Willits, California and talks about reducing fossil fuel inputs to the food system.

Kirsten Bradford from Willits talks about hospital care in the context of peak oil and climate issues.

Jessica Pierce is a bioethicist who looks at the moral challenges facing healthcare, as a part of the wrap up.

Don Spady, MD, talks about differences between the Canadian and US medical systems in needed responses to peak oil.

Joel Kreisberg, DC, MA, talks about pharmaceutical pollution of drinking water.

If you and William Catton are both there in person, please give my regards to him (He spoke at our conference in 2006 "Peak Oil and the Environment" in DC. He would qualify as one of my top 5 living 'heroes'. His book "Overshoot" is one of best books ever written and along with 'Ishmael' caused me to shut down my hedge fund in 2003 and go back to school.

I am afraid that we are not there in person. Pre-recording sounded like a safer option, and it looks like it is working out that way.

His book "Overshoot" is one of best books ever written ...

Notably, Catton coined the the term 'cosmeticism', which covers about 99% of our 'save the planet' activities. The Prius. Or driving your Volvo to a 10-mile distant recycling centre to dispose of three plastic bottles and 12 back numbers of 'The New Statesman'. Growing 'organic' vegetables. All those tips and tricks about closing the fridge door and not allowing your car engine to run overnight and wearing pullovers so you can turn down the thermostat. Worrying about low-level ionising radiation. Alar scare. Rainbow Warrior Hysteria. Etcetera ..

Wot's 'Ishmael'?

If you are frequent reader of TOD, (and especially if you can quote Catton from memory) you don't need to read Daniel Quinn - its fiction - that via conversations shows how mankind didn't NEED to end up this way - it all happened because one tribe (or group of tribes) started the agricultural revolution, then from there we stored food, had to hire people to count it, guard it, etc. and we ended up here. For someone with a brain but whose life has been an illusion colored by mainstream media, the book was an eyeopener (though even I put it down after 20 pages in 1998 cuz I thought it really stupid) Shows how you have to be ready to change/accept new ideas for it to occur (n=1)

Anyways - Catton the real deal, especially as a social scientist.

Hi Gail,

So far I have viewed Roscoe Bartlett's and your presentations and was disappointed to see that all the presentations are "only" streaming and not downloadable so can't be saved for later.

Keep up the good work.

Their streaming video isn't working for me either. Ironic that it is hosted by the "Ohio Supercomputer Center."

Downloadable video would be better. Gail -- any chance you could pass along this info and recommendation to them?

I am going to try to make mine available as a YouTube presentation. I doubt that is downloadable, either.

I think the problem is that these files, in any reasonable format, are very large. They are much larger than I could upload on the server we use at TOD, for example. The streaming techniques seem to get around this problem. Colleges and universities seem to be more constrained on file sizes than others, perhaps since there are so many users, and states are rather miserly in their funding.

I will be talking to these folks again, and will let them know about the problems, but I am sure they are already aware of them.

Barely acceptable video and audio quality can be had for about 300 megabytes per hour with DiVX or XViD, and about 150 megabytes per hour with QuickTime. I would not under any circumstances use Microsoft's ASF format for anything you intend to be watchable.

Filesharing networks such as BitTorrent or eDonkey work well for distribution, and would allow people to keep a viewable copy locally, rather than having to connect to Google Video or YouTube.

Email me at the updated address in my profile if you'd like to pursue this further, Gail.

The current version of the "Real" plugin for "Firefox" will allow you to download most streaming flash video to your machine, "Youtube" clips regardless of length are no problem. This is all "Free", but not all "Open" software.

Youtube videos (and those on many other sites) are downloadable with 3rd party software.

See, for example,


This is really good. I've read the PDF, I haven't figured out how to play the audio/video yet.

Could you please advise how to pronounce your last name (Tverberg). Sometimes I refer to my sources when talking to someone, rather than in written communication, and I want to get it right. Your article is really clear and I want to tell people about it.


I say Tuh' ver berg. That's not really the original Norwegian pronunciation. I think that would be more like Tver' berg, with the r rolled.

I wish to post a question.

I am a technician , electronics is my profession.
so please be kind ,and realize i do not have answers, only questions.

Can some on tell me if the information on CO2 IR pass through in the below link is accurate , and if not can you direct me to a more accurate source. Mr. Peden has a nice review and is very good.

thank you,

The below web site by James A. Peden:

"His thesis on charge transfer reactions in the upper atmosphere was co-published in part in the prestigious Journal of Chemical Physics."

searching for truth and basic facts.

I'm afraid this isn't a global warming site. Your question is out of my area of expertise.