Located on the Santarella Estate in the Tyringham Valley, this former sculpting studio is surrounded by gardens, a pond, brooks and streams, a walking path and “storybook architecture.” Want to do more exploring? Check out the nearby Appalachian Trail.
Go really old school with this lovely garden house on a renovated medieval farm in upper Normandy.
Hand-built by the host Brittany, this tiny home is nestled away in a lovely rural setting overlooking the Puget Sound, but is still just minutes away from downtown Olympia so you can take in some local culture as well.
This peaceful treehouse has cozy accommodations, stunning views and the aroma of surrounding herb and flower gardens to boot. Described as a “suspended nest,” it’s a wine lover’s paradise surrounded by top-quality wine producers and imbued with enological history.
Built for a Romany by a Romany and taken to the Appleby Horse Fair, this little wagon is the real deal. I’m thinking that sleeping in this beauty would lend itself to some pretty amazing dreams and the sense that you’ve just time-traveled to another dimension.
Calling all wordsmiths: How does hiding away in a writer’s cabin in Stockholm sound? Pretty nice, eh?
This warm, simply beautiful, wooden cabin is just a short walk from town and a perfect way to get off of the tourist path.
Located on Maui’s north shore, this little cabin comes complete with everything you’ll need for an island vacation, including surfboards, boogie boards, beach chairs, ocean views and fruit trees.
In addition to being gorgeous, hip and fun, this tiny apartment is located inside a former city gate, one of the most important monuments in Porta Romana, with origins that trace back to the Roman walls of the city.
Feeling rustic? Don’t mind roughing it a bit? Check out this hand-built, A-frame cabin in the heart of Six Rivers National Forest. Oh yeah, and there’s an outdoor kitchen, organic garden, wood-fired sauna and custom bodywork sessions available.
Why not take in the Big Easy tiny-house style? This little cottage, which has been described as a dollhouse, is close to cultural hotspot Magazine Street and has convenient access to public transportation so you can move about the city with ease.
The reviews do all the talking for this tiny house which features gardens, a meditation room and more: “If you want to refill yourself, this is a perfect place for you!”, “...a true piece of heaven on earth!” and so on. And all for $21 per night.
It’s rustic, it’s modern, it has stairs and a sleeping loft, it was built by its hosts and it was featured on the TV show Tiny House Nation. According to previous guests, it’s a great way to have a rustic little getaway, in the middle of a hip, happening city.
A barn that’s been lightly converted into sleeping quarters, this one is not ideal for the winter months, but it’s beautiful, peaceful and comes with wi-fi.
Who doesn’t want to stay in a Roma-style, handcrafted wagon? It is absolutely adorable, full of made-with-love details, and provides great story material to take back home.
Part of a yoga and meditation homestay facility, this treehouse is a way to really get away from it all. As one guest writes, it offers “falling asleep to the raucous sounds of crickets, tree frogs and waking up to birdsong and the smell of trees.” And it’s only a 10-minute drive from the town center.
Home of the Grand Ol’ Opry, the famous Bluebird Cafe, the Country Music Hall of Fame and lots more, Nashville, known as Music City, USA, simply oozes music. This tiny house bills itself as the city’s tiniest, fully-equipped guest house, with a full kitchen, a full bathroom, running water, heat, air conditioning and wi-fi.
A treehouse, on a volcano, on Hawaii’s Big Island? Now that sounds like a great getaway. Expect: lava tubes, rainforests, a steep climb to your accommodations, a gorgeous treehouse designed by TV’s Treehouse Masters, lots of hiking, exploring, lots of flowers and birds.
A stunning structure made from teak wood, this little boat comes complete with views of the harbor, two cats and breakfast. So if being lulled to sleep by the sway of a boat sounds good, and Hong Kong is in your travel plans, this might be just the thing.
In Granada, Spain, people have been inhabiting caves since ancient times. Now you can see what it feels like to stay in a place where you can feel “the embrace of the Earth.” Yes, they’re fully equipped, yes, they are pedestrian-friendly and close to public transit, and yes, the caves even have wi-fi!
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The speed and scale of the response to COVID-19 by governments, businesses and individuals seems to provide hope that we can react to the climate change crisis in a similarly decisive manner - but history tells us that humans do not react to slow-moving and distant threats.
A Game of Jenga<p>Think of it as a game of Jenga and the planet's climate system as the tower. For generations, we have been slowly removing blocks. But at some point, we will remove a pivotal block, such as the collapse of one of the major global ocean circulation systems, for example the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC), that will cause all or part of the global climate system to fall into a planetary emergency.</p><p>But worse still, it could cause runaway damage: Where the tipping points form a domino-like cascade, where breaching one triggers breaches of others, creating an unstoppable shift to a radically and swiftly changing climate.</p><p>One of the most concerning tipping points is mass methane release. Methane can be found in deep freeze storage within permafrost and at the bottom of the deepest oceans in the form of methane hydrates. But rising sea and air temperatures are beginning to thaw these stores of methane.</p><p>This would release a powerful greenhouse gas into the atmosphere, 30-times more potent than carbon dioxide as a global warming agent. This would drastically increase temperatures and rush us towards the breach of other tipping points.</p><p>This could include the acceleration of ice thaw on all three of the globe's large, land-based ice sheets – Greenland, West Antarctica and the Wilkes Basin in East Antarctica. The potential collapse of the West Antarctic ice sheet is seen as a key tipping point, as its loss could eventually <a href="https://science.sciencemag.org/content/324/5929/901" target="_blank">raise global sea levels by 3.3 meters</a> with important regional variations.</p><p>More than that, we would be on the irreversible path to full land-ice melt, causing sea levels to rise by up to 30 meters, roughly at the rate of two meters per century, or maybe faster. Just look at the raised beaches around the world, at the last high stand of global sea level, at the end of the Pleistocene period around 120,0000 years ago, to see the evidence of such a warm world, which was just 2°C warmer than the present day.</p>
Cutting Off Circulation<p>As well as devastating low-lying and coastal areas around the world, melting polar ice could set off another tipping point: a disablement to the AMOC.</p><p>This circulation system drives a northward flow of warm, salty water on the upper layers of the ocean from the tropics to the northeast Atlantic region, and a southward flow of cold water deep in the ocean.</p><p>The ocean conveyor belt has a major effect on the climate, seasonal cycles and temperature in western and northern Europe. It means the region is warmer than other areas of similar latitude.</p><p>But melting ice from the Greenland ice sheet could threaten the AMOC system. It would dilute the salty sea water in the north Atlantic, making the water lighter and less able or unable to sink. This would slow the engine that drives this ocean circulation.</p><p><a href="https://www.carbonbrief.org/atlantic-conveyor-belt-has-slowed-15-per-cent-since-mid-twentieth-century" target="_blank">Recent research</a> suggests the AMOC has already weakened by around 15% since the middle of the 20th century. If this continues, it could have a major impact on the climate of the northern hemisphere, but particularly Europe. It may even lead to the <a href="https://ore.exeter.ac.uk/repository/handle/10871/39731?show=full" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">cessation of arable farming</a> in the UK, for instance.</p><p>It may also reduce rainfall over the Amazon basin, impact the monsoon systems in Asia and, by bringing warm waters into the Southern Ocean, further destabilize ice in Antarctica and accelerate global sea level rise.</p>
The Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation has a major effect on the climate. Praetorius (2018)
Is it Time to Declare a Climate Emergency?<p>At what stage, and at what rise in global temperatures, will these tipping points be reached? No one is entirely sure. It may take centuries, millennia or it could be imminent.</p><p>But as COVID-19 taught us, we need to prepare for the expected. We were aware of the risk of a pandemic. We also knew that we were not sufficiently prepared. But we didn't act in a meaningful manner. Thankfully, we have been able to fast-track the production of vaccines to combat COVID-19. But there is no vaccine for climate change once we have passed these tipping points.</p><p><a href="https://www.weforum.org/reports/the-global-risks-report-2021" target="_blank">We need to act now on our climate</a>. Act like these tipping points are imminent. And stop thinking of climate change as a slow-moving, long-term threat that enables us to kick the problem down the road and let future generations deal with it. We must take immediate action to reduce global warming and fulfill our commitments to the <a href="https://www.ipcc.ch/sr15/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Paris Agreement</a>, and build resilience with these tipping points in mind.</p><p>We need to plan now to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, but we also need to plan for the impacts, such as the ability to feed everyone on the planet, develop plans to manage flood risk, as well as manage the social and geopolitical impacts of human migrations that will be a consequence of fight or flight decisions.</p><p>Breaching these tipping points would be cataclysmic and potentially far more devastating than COVID-19. Some may not enjoy hearing these messages, or consider them to be in the realm of science fiction. But if it injects a sense of urgency to make us respond to climate change like we have done to the pandemic, then we must talk more about what has happened before and will happen again.</p><p>Otherwise we will continue playing Jenga with our planet. And ultimately, there will only be one loser – us.</p>
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