1,900th Post: Climate Change As A Wicked Problem

A reflection on climate change and the daunting but exciting task at hand in energy, transportation, industry, food production and so on.

Electric buses are a solution to our cities’ worst problems

A lot of news and noise surround electric cars but another vehicle is also benefitting largely from elecrification: buses. Running not for just a little bit in the morning and in the evening, they run all day, and sometimes, even part of the night. Tranporting not just one or two people to work at a … Read more

Our energy landscape abounds with missed opportunities

For my Certificate in Sustainable Energy Solutions we have had classes all year long on various topics such as renewable energy, water, waste, heat and more. Every month we have indeed been privileged to talk to guest speakers who are specialists in their respective areas.

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Cleantech could help cities save $17 trillion

Smart infrastructure choices from cities worldwide would save them $17 trillion (15.2 billion euros) by 2050. The solutions – renewable energy, public transportation, energy efficiency – are not new but the lens of this new study is interesting. 

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The United States are entering a post-oil world

When Bloomberg writes that in the United States  Big Oil Is About to Lose Control of the Auto Industryyou know there is something going on, especially when they rely on solid BNEF study and data. 

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Oil prices are going down. Wait, what ?

This was my reaction when I saw oil prices drop recently to levels below $90. Not long ago they were indeed more around $110 than anything else. Lucky for us Thomas L Friedman from the New York Times brings some answers…

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Large cities are determined to fight climate change

If countries and nations are failing short in acting on climate, big cities around the world are increasingly acting on these matters. This has been particularly apparent in the New York summit last month. 

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Crazy air pollution levels in Paris

Last week and earlier this one, the French capital was hit by important levels of air pollution. The situation was so out of hand on Monday that the city of Paris decided to ban half the cars off the roads as TreeHugger reported. According to the local ADEME, France is a severe offender regarding air … Read more

How to save money on your commute

CommutingMy current job – which I have been doing for almost a year now – makes that for the first time in my life, I have to commute by car. In my previous jobs I was indeed commuting by using public transportation or simply walking.

This current situation is quite embarrassing as I have been dedicated to help protect our civilization from climate change and environmental perils. This is also a financial issue as I spend over 100-120€ on gas each month.

So after reading an article from the French ADEME, I decided to cut my speed on my way back home by 10 kmph, saving fifty euro cents per day, or around ten euros per month.

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Towards sustainability, reloaded : transport

(Word of caution : this is a repost from an old series) For the fourth installment of these series – see the previous articles on heating, electricity and water– I would like to propose you a selection of the best tips to help you using less your car.

Doing so is good for your health, your budget, your community and our common environment. It is also one of the most efficient step to cut your greenhouse gases emissions.

Spring is the best moment to do so as the weather is becoming more clement and allows to get back on our bikes. It is also the best way to prepare for summer.

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Oil prices : from a recession to another

To the prestigious International Energy Agency :” If oil averages USD 120 per barrel in 2012, the global oil import burden  is set to reach a record high of over USD 2 trillion, or USD 5.5 billion per day “

Their press release goes on : ” The current price levels are on average higher than the awful year of 2008, and as such have the capacity to tip the global economy back into recession

The solution is simple : we have to ween ourselves from oil as soon as possible. It’s not as if already knew it and not as if we lacked alternatives.

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Why – good – public transportation matters

I could say a lot of bad things about public transportation in Paris : they’re noisy, smelly, dirty, overcrowded in peak hours and not exactly cheap and most of all, not reliable at all. But they slashed my CO2 emissions by almost 10 kg per day.

So, according to the RATP, during the eight months of my mission I avoided emitting 1,400 kilograms of carbon dioxide. And taking the subway was way cheaper than owning, fueling, insuring and parking a car in Paris.

When I remember all the cars idling in traffic while I went or came back from work as I was reading the many books I read since January, I can’t but appreciate public transportation.

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