Tuscany Amber Davenport

Amber Davenport

Tuscany is known to be one of the most popular holiday destinations in Italy for people from England, and it’s not difficult to see why. Because it kind of looks like the English countryside, especially if we looked after it a bit better. You won’t find strewn litter or discarded cigarette butts in the Tuscan hills, and there is a lot we can learn from how the locals look after their stunning countryside, councils could take note (you’d never find rivers with masses of litter that is never cleared, as happens in some parts of England).

From fragrant lavender fields to the Tuscan mountains to the wine-growing districts, everything about this beautiful area is about preserving nature and making it easy to get around by foot or bicycle.

why Tuscany is taking climate change seriously

One big issue we have here in England is that many politicians and those in the media, do not take climate change as seriously as it needs to be. In the USA, Fox News gives free publicity to climate change deniers (including Donald Trump). And in England, we now have GB News letting presenters do the same. Surprisingly, one is former Coast presenter Neil Oliver, who recently said that media and politicians were scaremongering people to be ‘frightened of summer’ due to climate change heatwaves. He’s likely a very nice man, but of course he’s not a climate scientist, and getting these facts wrong has huge consequences.

The claim that ‘terrifying temperatures of at least 40 degrees c were being predicted, in order to ‘control the public’ was quickly disputed by BBC meteorologist Tomasz Schafermaker, who tore the argument up with science. He explains reported temperatures are air temperature (above 1 metre) not ground temperatures, which will have been higher (sometimes in excess of 50 C). This is the problem when we have MPs and media pundits deciding how serious climate change is, rather than listening to scientists and qualified weather forecasters.

How much of climate change is caused by us? The short answer is all of it. Scientists’ best estimate is that roughly 100% of warming since the mid-20th Century is caused by human activity. The main producers of greenhouse gases are electricity generation and transport. Current research finds that if humans weren’t around, the climate would actually be cooling slightly. To avoid the worst impacts, we need to stop burning fossil fuels and transition to renewable energy. Dr John Cook (climate scientist)

Meanwhile in Tuscany, nobody can afford to be a climate sceptic. The hot recent summers have  been causing havoc with the local economy (rich due to olive oil and wine) with grapes  ripening far earlier than they should, so having to be harvested are the wrong times. Wildfires (and storms with winds of up to 150km an hour) have caused local deaths (and in one area, 300 pine trees blew down, affecting the very countryside that attracts tourists).

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