[GWSG] Banning gas; some good news; intercity busses & trains; Arrival busses; critics critiqued; MA's hydropower lessons

Tilley, Al atilley at unf.edu
Wed Dec 29 08:21:27 EST 2021

1. New York City has banned the use of natural gas in new buildings. Over 60 other cities have restricted the use of commercial methane, and more are moving in that direction. https://www.treehugger.com/new-york-city-bans-gas-in-new-buildings-5214177?utm_campaign=treehugger&utm_medium=email&utm_source=cn_nl&utm_content=26173879&utm_term=

2. Mongabay, whose editor once commented that he runs probably the most depressing site on the internet, recounts the top positive environmental news stories of the past year. Did you know that humpback whales have regained 93% of their premodern population after nearly going extinct in the middle of the past century? https://news.mongabay.com/2021/12/top_positive_environmental_new_stories_2021/

3. FlixMobility launched its electric train and bus lines in Germany in 2013 and became Europe’s largest intercity network. Now they are developing in the US. The company’s business plan is to develop, manage, and support the independent companies which actually own the coaches. FlixMobility has bought Greyhound. (I know, that contradicts what I just said; my impression is that Greyhound will continue to maintain a separate corporate identity.) The main problem facing development of electric bus lines is the charging infrastructure necessary for trips longer than the 200 mile range of the current batteries. When that is solved (help is on the way), the company aspires to offer not only the cleanest but the cheapest transportation in the country. https://inhabitat.com/electric-bus-network-expected-to-be-in-the-us-in-2022/

4. Arrival electric busses will be manufactured in England, the EU, and the US in the coming year. Their US HQ and a van manufacturing facility will be in Charlotte, NC. https://electrek.co/2021/12/28/arrival-bus-proving-ground-trials-begin-in-uk-ahead-of-q2-2022-production/

5.  The Netflix satire “Don’t Look Up” is receiving an illuminating range of reviews. Generally, it delighted climate scientists and irritated critics. This review of the reviews from Forbes poses an analysis which is critical of the critics. https://climatecrocks.com/2021/12/28/movie-has-scientists-feeling-seen-and-maybe-media-feeling-a-bit-too-seen/

6. As part of its plan to develop renewable energy, Massachusetts planned to draw hydropower from Canada through a new power line which would cross other states. It ran into opposition. Two lessons: involve in the planning people who will be affected, and plan to counter fossil fuel interests, which largely funded the opposition. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/dec/29/maine-renewable-energy-hydropower-new-england

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