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Norway Considers A “Tesla Tax” On Some Electric Cars

Clean Technica, 14 October 2017
Norway charges a tax on new cars that can actually double the list price. Heavier, more powerful cars pay more. The tax on smaller, less powerful cars is more modest. Electric cars are exempt from the tax entirely, which is one of the primary reasons electric cars in Norway are so popular.

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Melbourne’s oBikes face impounding under anti-clutter crackdown

The Guardian, 17 October 2017
The operators of the distinctive yellow bicycles littering Melbourne will have two hours to move bikes left in dangerous places or face fines. Dozens of dockless bikes have been thrown up trees, on to train tracks and dumped in rivers by their users.
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Boeing is betting big on automating its flying machines.

CNN Money, 5 October 2017
The aerospace giant is buying Aurora Flight Sciences, a maker of automated drones and aviation parts, in a bid to bring increased automation to airliners, military drones and even personal air taxis. “The combined strength and innovation of our teams will advance the development of autonomy for our commercial and military systems,” said Greg Hyslop, chief technology officer and senior vice president of Boeing Engineering, Test & Technology in a statement.
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Turbulence could be making a more serious comeback in air travel

Crikey, 10 October 2017
One of the worst things about flying before the jet age began on a large scale in the late ’50s was turbulence, and resulting air sickness. But there are warnings, as well as some statistical claims, that things are getting rougher than before, despite the apparent smoothness of jet travel that has long been taken for granted by generations of air travellers. This week’s “return to your seat and buckle up” contribution to the genre comes from America’s ABC. It is based on an article in Geophysical Research Letters journal, and as is often the case, the general news story has a high tease-to-factual-content ratio that makes it less than useful to those of us who want to know what it is really about and how it might affect them.
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Competitive tendering hasn’t delivered for public transport, so why reward poor performance?

The Conversation, 10 October 2017
Transdev, which operates about one-third of Melbourne’s buses, recently had 33 buses taken off the road due to safety defects. Transport Safety Victoria’s action coincides with a review of a three-year rollover of the French company’s A$1.7 billion contract. The contract was announced in 2013 following competitive tendering. This confluence of events raises at least two questions about contracting for transport services. Australian state governments should reflect on whether competitive tendering necessarily delivers the best outcomes for the public, and on the role of operator performance in contract renewal.
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Revealed: every Londoner breathing dangerous levels of toxic air particle

The Guardian, 5 October 2017
The scale of London’s air pollution crisis was laid bare on Wednesday, with new figures showing that every person in the capital is breathing air that exceeds global guidelines for one of the most dangerous toxic particles. The research, based on the latest updated London Atmospheric Emissions Inventory, shows that every area in the capital exceeds World Health Organisation (WHO) limits for a damaging type of particle known as PM2.5.
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In a Warming World, Keeping the Planes Running

New York Times, 30 September 2017
Airports are a major global business, part of an industry that by one estimate transports the equivalent of nearly half the world’s population in a single year. But the world’s airports were largely designed for an older era — a cooler one.
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Seminar: The Electrification of Australia’s Land Transport: How to get Moving by Dr Michael Kane

Wednesday October 25th 2017, Time: 12 pm – 1 pm
Synopsis
Dr Michael Kane will present the current efforts in Queensland to electrify land transport. His will also take us through some of his thoughts on whether the goal of 100% renewable land transport is feasible. He will discuss potential policies and practices that might make this possible.

Reflecting on this what will be interesting is that the intensification of road transport will also occur with electric AVs but not sufficiently to impact on peak major trunk PT. Lesser traditional PT and local private car trips will likely be replaced by a hybrid version of Uber/taxis/on demand transport. Private AV car use will have to be subject to road pricing or the road network will grind to a halt. What is also challenging from another perspective is that late night PT trunk is likely to unviable outside very large cities and slow and inefficient rail/light rail will also come into question as to why they shouldn’t be converted to ‘shared’ AV only highways (existing rail lines in Perth are all good performers). It will be a much more competitive environment in many ways, and everyone’s mode loyalties are going to be challenged. Trunk PT will also have to drop in price to remain competitive which should be possible with the dropping of subsidised non-trunk services.

With the recent pricing on hydrogen fuel cells (coming from 100% renewables) for buses and trucks is it realistic to assume to assume that all land transport is capable of transitioning technology wise for no additional vehicle costs from some point in the next decade? While there may be some infrastructure and industry changeover costs, the real challenge will be changing people’s mind-sets.

About the Presenter

Dr Michael Kane is the Director of Innovation and Economic Strategies at Economic Development Queensland. Dr Kane’s role is to support EDQ’s innovative planning and development initiatives relating to regional development, sustainable energy/water, housing, knowledge economy and transport. Michael has worked with EDQ (and Urban Land Development Authority) since 2009 in sustainability, innovation and strategy advisory roles. Before this he was an adviser for the Minister for Planning and Infrastructure in Western Australia on land development, transport and strategic planning. He has a PhD from Curtin University with his thesis relating to knowledge economy, urban and transport planning.

Event Details
Event: CUSP Seminar: The Electrification of Australia’s
Land Transport: How to get Moving by Dr. Michael Kane.
Date: Wednesday October 25th 2017
Time: 12 pm – 1 pm
Location: [Norman Dufty Lecture Theatre – Bldg 210, Rm 102]
Curtin University
Kent Street, Bentley
RSVP: Please RSVP your attendance by [Tues – 26/10/2017].
Early responses are appreciated.

Event registration
christine.finlay@curtin.edu.au
Please Contact Christine Finlay by [26/10/2017] to register you interest in attending this event.

Paris Banned Cars For The Day And It Looked Stunning

Huffington Post, 2 October 2017
Paris has pulled off its most ambitious ‘car-free day’ yet, with 105 square kilometres of the French capital set aside for pedestrians and cyclists. In its third year, the ban on all private cars and motorised bikes took place between 11am and 6pm on Sunday in a fight against air pollution in the city. The only exceptions were for taxis, public transport and emergency vehicles — and if police caught Parisians driving, they faced fines of up to $200.

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Forget the Paris agreement. The real solution to climate change is in the U.S. tax code

Washington Post, 2 October 2017
When President Trump made a speech a few weeks ago to kick off his push for an overhaul of the tax code, he chose a telling backdrop: An oil refinery in North Dakota, a state that over the past decade exploded from backwater to boom town thanks to a massive spike in oil production.

“I want all of America to be inspired by what’s happened in North Dakota and the North Dakota example,” Trump said. Standing with him on the podium was Harold Hamm, the North Dakota oil billionaire who has helped shape Trump’s views on energy. So when Trump said he wanted to “restore America’s competitive edge by passing tax cuts,” he seemed to have at least one particular industry in mind: oil.
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