Museum to focus on issues of the era

The American Revolution Center’s planned museum will serve as a critical link among Pennsylvania’s Revolutionary War sites, organizers say. When it opens in 2011, it also will serve as a model of green construction and environmental sensitivity.

The three-level museum will be built into a hillside on 78 acres near the north bank of the Schuylkill River. The land on which it will sit is within the boundaries of Valley Forge National Historical Park but will remain privately owned.

Museum to focus on issues of the era. Pittsburgh Post Gazette

One man envisions downtown entry

About a year ago, Kent Mendenhall, a former Pittsburg resident, walked into Pittsburg City Manager Allen Gill’s office.

After some discussion, Mendenhall left Gill with detailed drawings of what an entryway to downtown Pittsburg could look like.

“It was amazing,” Gill said. “He just walked in, unsolicited, left us some drawings to look at and possible plans. What’s impressive is that those plans are on-line with what has been talked about in many different committees about what to do for a north entryway.”

One man envisions downtown entry | The Morning Sun.

Global warming pact set for 2009 after US backs down

World climate negotiators set a 2009 deadline Saturday for a landmark treaty to fight global warming after two weeks of intense haggling led to a climbdown by an isolated United States.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, who flew to the Indonesian island of Bali for a late appeal for flexibility, praised the deal as a “pivotal first step” to confront climate change, “the defining challenge of our time.”

Following gruelling all-night talks, the conference of 190 nations finally launched a process to negotiate a new treaty for when the UN Kyoto Protocol’s commitments expire in 2012.

AFP: Global warming pact set for 2009 after US backs down.

Shanghai maglev rail route may detour to avoid residences- Xinhua

The planners of the Shanghai-Hangzhou magnetic levitation (maglev) rail project will design the proposed route to avoid residential buildings and lessen the impact of radiation upon people, according to a municipal government official.

“The maglev project has basically two environmental effects: noise and magnetic radiation,” said Zhang Quan, deputy director of the Shanghai Environmental Bureau.

A maglev train generates high levels of noise at speeds exceeding 200 kilometers per hour. “A possible solution for the noise problem may be slowing the train in downtown areas and speeding it up when it leaves urban districts,” said Zhang.

Approved by the central government in March 2006, the 175-km Shanghai-Hangzhou maglev rail project is estimated to cost 35 billion yuan (4.5 billion U.S. dollars). Trains will be able to reach a speed of 450 km per hour.

Shanghai maglev rail route may detour to avoid residences_English_Xinhua.

Government’s offshore wind power target branded ‘pie in the sky’

Industry secretary John Hutton announced in Berlin that Britain wanted to expand offshore wind power to provide about a fifth of the country’s electricity by 2020. This would mark a big increase from the current level of less than 1%.

Five years ago the then energy minister, Brian Wilson, announced that vast areas of shallow sea around Britain would be earmarked for an expansion of wind power that theoretically could power Britain three times over

Government’s offshore wind power target branded ‘pie in the sky’ | Environment | The Guardian.

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