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Posts from the ‘environment’ Category

Petrol cars will vanish in 8 years, says US report from Stanford economist

Aust Financial Review, 15 May 2017
No more petrol or diesel cars, buses, or trucks will be sold anywhere in the world within eight years. The entire market for land transport will switch to electrification, leading to a collapse of oil prices and the demise of the petroleum industry as we have known it for a century. This is the futuristic forecast by Stanford University economist Tony Seba. The professor’s report, with the deceptively bland title Rethinking Transportation 2020-2030, has gone viral in green circles and is causing spasms of anxiety in the established industries.
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A state ravaged by oil: 745 oil spills reported in North Dakota in just one year

SALON, 8 May 2017
North Dakota, a state that was the forefront of national protests for months over environmental concerns stemming from the construction of a major pipeline, reported 745 oil spills since last May, according to the state’s Department of Health.
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Higher-density cities need greening to stay healthy and liveable

The Conversation, 5 May 2017
Access to high-quality public open space is a key ingredient of healthy, liveable cities. This has long been recognised in government planning policy, based on a large body of academic research showing that accessible green spaces lead to better health outcomes. However, cities are home to more than just people. We also need to accommodate the critters and plants who live in them. This includes the species who called our cities home before we did.
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In Norway, A Growing Movement Builds an Oil-Free Future

The Leap, 27 April 2017
As a Norwegian, I admit to being kind of proud to see Norway at the top of the UN’s latest global happiness index. And the ranking makes sense: We’re blessed with snow, water, and mountains, effective public education and health care systems, plentiful jobs in a well-regulated economy, and a free and open democracy not too hobbled by fake news or Trumpian bluster. However, it seems our beautiful country has become complacent in its happiness. In spite of the climate crisis and the ever-growing need to keep fossil fuels in the ground, last year the Norwegian government—for the first time in 20 years—opened up a new oil frontier in the melting and vulnerable Barents Sea above the Arctic Circle. And last month, the government announced yet another push for Arctic oil, inviting oil companies to bid for 93 new licenses.
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How murals helped turn a declining community around

The Conversation, 13 April 2017
The inner-city district of Shandon, Ireland, has a history that dates back to medieval times. Its narrow streets and laneways are an eclectic architectural mix – Georgian, Victorian and modern buildings nestle alongside terraced worker’s cottages. But Shandon had become rundown despite its heritage value. Our research examined how, over the last 15 years, community groups in Shandon created public murals as part of a successful process of reversing decades of stagnation. In the later part of the 20th century, declining local employment opportunities and suburbanisation had prompted many residents to leave Shandon. Part of the Irish city of Cork, the district also suffered from a lack of a coherent planning framework. One of the vehicles for bringing the community together and revitalising Shandon was a mural project called “The Big Wash-Up”.
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Australian gas: between a fracked rock and a socially hard place

The Conversation, 10 April 2017
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s response to the looming east coast gas shortage has been to secure a promise from gas producers to increase domestic supply.
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VW ‘dieselgate’ [UK] payout offer outrageously low, says Sadiq Khan

The Guardian, 12 December 2016
Sadiq Khan has called on the government to secure proper compensation from Volkswagen for the “dieselgate” scandal, saying the £1.1m pledged so far was outrageous. The London mayor said the settlement was far too low compared with the £12bn payout achieved by US authorities for VW’s use of sophisticated “defeat devices” to cheat emissions tests.
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Clear air plans won’t punish drivers of older diesel cars, [UK] PM promises

The Guardian, 5 April 2017
Theresa May says she will not punish drivers of older diesel cars who were encouraged to buy the polluting vehicles under the Labour government. A crackdown on the vehicles to tackle poor air quality has been announced by the London mayor, Sadiq Khan, with drivers of polluting vehicles facing £24-a-day charges to drive in central London from 2019.
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GM, Buick to launch plug-ins, electric cars in China

Detroit News, 24 March 2017
General Motors Co. said Friday its Buick brand will soon launch its first extended-range electric vehicle, the Velite 5, in China. The Detroit automaker said it plans in the next two years to introduce plug-in hybrid gasoline electric vehicles and pure electric vehicles under the Buick brand in China. GM’s largest sales market is China, where Buick last year topped more than 1 million in sales and more than 8 million since its introduction in 1998.
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Emissions standards on cars will save Australians billions of dollars, and help meet our climate targets

The Conversation, 16 March 2017
The cheapest way for Australia to cut greenhouse gas emissions is to put a cap on car emissions. It would be so cheap, in fact, that it will save drivers money. According to analysis from ClimateWorks, the toughest proposed standard would help Australia achieve about 6% of its 2030 emission reduction target, and save drivers up to A$500 each year on fuel.
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