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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Here come the toilets of the future

Here is a smelly question : why are we putting together what Nature separates ? This is the question asked by a Swedish researcher about toilets. Putting urine and feces together is not a good idea as it is simply a waste of resources.

Moreover, flushing with liters and liters of perfectly drinkable water is a bad idea as water scarcity is already striking around the world and will spread as climate gets warmer.

Now here come scientists from Singapore with an idea that could revolutionize the way we dispose from our bodily waste.

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Putting the A/C at the right temperature

Air conditioning is a fantastic invention as it allows to remain cool when temperatures are reaching 30°C and even 40°C. However, in many buildings around the world, the A/C is not set at the right temperature. As the New York times noted :

“Without fail, every year since moving to Hong Kong, I get a really bad cold. (…) “Oh, it’s quite common this time of year,” my doctor told me. “Everyone gets sick.” He was referring to the time of year that Hong Kong cranks up its air-conditioning. “

I have read that the same situation occurs in Singapore. I have witnessed it first hand in Europe as well. Others have told me about such a situation in America. This is a widespread phenomenon.

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Singapore is the greenest city in Asia.

I admit I have a strange fascination for Singapore, a hub for Asia as well as a world leader in water treatment. The city -state achieved last year a whooping 15 percent economic growth, ie. ten times more than my home country.

Almost despite this, it is according to Siemens’ Asian Green City Index, the continent’s greenest city. As with its European counterpart, the study focused on CO2 emissions, energy and air quality as well as other parameters.

21 other cities were studied, including Tokyo, Shanghai and Hanoi. Out of them, six are Chinese, four are Indian and three are Japanese. For more on the study, please download it (126 pages).

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Could aquaculture be a sustainable solution ?

As the New York Times notes aquaculture might be a good solution to avoid the depletion of fish stocks and thus be a sustainable way to feed the billion of people that will be born this century. However fish farming poses several problems such as diseases, water pollution, heavy antibiotics use and also may harm … Read more

Can China build three fast rail transcontinental networks ?

While reading CleanTechnica I came across a tremendously huge project : link via high speed rail Asia and Europe. This network would enable to go from London to Beijing in only two days.

Within ten years, the three networks would transport people and goods alike and would link 17 nations – including India, Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand, Russia – at 320 kilometres per hour (200 mph).

If completed, this project would be a fantastic alternative to air travel. Will the 21st century be another golden age for rail travel ?

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Water in Singapore : Conserve, Value, Enjoy

For this month’s article on CleanTechies we are moving from cleantech in France to focus on water management in Singapore as I read Erik Orsenna’s book on water. There are many interesting things to learn there. From massive rainwater harvesting to water treatment with 15 reservoirs and recycling and desalination, the island city covers 60 … Read more

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