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Futureportal… an ezine on the future, November 2012

futureportal logo

Welcome to Futureportal, an ezine of the Institute for the Future at Anne Arundel Community College (IF @ AACC), November 2012, volume 8, issue 10...We study the future to help build a better tomorrow.   

Inside this issue...

  • applied foresight... using the perspective
  • futures thinking... looking ahead
  • on the horizon... learning opportunities & events - local, regional and global

applied foresight... using the perspective

Smart Growth
Smart growth avoids urban sprawl and optimizes land use to create / sustain communities with a high quality of life. Here are ten principles of smart growth from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Smart growth is employed by many communities across the U.S., such as these examples from Vermont and Maryland. Here is information about the 12th annual New Partners for Smart Growth Conference to be held February 7 - 9, 2013, in Kansas City, Missouri.


futures thinking... looking ahead

Carbon Sequestration
Carbon capture and storage (CCS) technologies, or carbon sequestration, offer ways to mediate the effects of increasing concentration of carbon dioxide gas in the atmosphere. The increasing burning of fossil fuels causes increasing carbon dioxide levels, leading to climate change, increased ocean acidity, and other related phenomena. The CCS technologies encompass two broad areas. One is storage, in either geologic formations, or in terrestrial storage by plants through photosynthesis with its ultimate fixation in biomass and soil. To promote this terrestrial storage, research and development efforts are pursuing enhancements to the carbon uptake of photosynthetic systems.

The second CCS technologies area is carbon dioxide utilization. This involves converting CO2 into commercial compounds, or into stable solid compounds which occupy  very much less volume. Studies are investigating the harnessing of naturally occurring non-photosynthetic microbiological processes to convert CO2 to methane and acetate, both commercially valuable compounds.

Severe Weather Events and Climate Change
The relationships among increased carbon dioxide levels, extreme weather events, and global warming are discussed on this site of the Union of Concerned Scientists. In the wake of the devastating storm Sandy, the American Red Cross and many other charities are accepting donations to help the storm victims.

on the horizon... learning opportunities & events

 The Brown Bag Lunch Seminar sponsored by IF @ AACC for November:

“Challenges of Making the Future: Transformation and Change in Large Bureaucracies”

by Mark D. Mandeles, Ph.D.
President, The deBloch Group

Thursday, November 8, 1 - 1:50 PM
CADE Bldg., Room 219, AACC Arnold Campus
This event is free and open to the public. (map)

Interested in a course on the future for college credit?

Check our Exploring the Future (FTR /BPA /SOC /PSY 105) course listing. This is a 3 credit-hour General Education course which also satisfies the diversity requirement, and it is offered in either online or face-to-face formats. Registration opens in November  for the Spring 2013 terms.

Create the future... today at the international futures ezine, Futuretakes blog. The blog can be a learning resource, or just a great mind-expander. Many of the questions are cross-cutting and trans-disciplinary. They are organized into categories for readers' convenience.

The Futureportal supports the spirit of community among colleagues and the synergy of working together.