China Must Go Green, and Soon

When it comes to environmental issues like global warming, America and China behave like a couple in a bad marriage, playing the blame game. But to tackle the problem of global warming, neither country can go it alone.

The University of California at Berkeley held a recent “marriage counseling” conference titled: “China’s Environment: What Do We Know and How Do We Know It?” It brought scientists, environmentalists, journalists and venture capitalists from both sides together, to come up with solutions.

China’s air, water, energy, urban and rural spaces were discussed, as well as how its population is affected by environment-related diseases. Although it’s a cliché that “the color of water in Chinese rivers is somewhere between dark grey and black,” the fact that China adds two coal-based power plants per week is astonishing. Kirk Smith, professor of global environmental health at UC Berkeley, concludes that “the cleanest cities in China are about the same as the dirtiest American city.”

China Must Go Green, and Soon – New America Media – Jun Wang 

Renewable Energy Powers Italian Town and Its Economy

Europeans believe that renewable energy will bring economic benefits. But in Varese, Italy that prosperity has already arrived.
by , Contributing Writer

Varese, Italy has added 140 jobs in the past ten years. That’s pretty good for a town with a population of only 2,400. The town, which is located in Liguria in the northern part of Italy, is experiencing an economic boom fueled by renewable energy.

The town has seen a six-fold increase in tourists in the last ten years, many coming just to see its renewable energy network.

Varese became the first municipality in Europe to get 100 percent of its power from renewable energy sources six years ago. It now generates three times more electricity than the people living in Varese need and there are plans in the pipeline for even more renewables.

Renewable Energy Powers Italian Town and Its Economy – renewable energyaccess.com – Jane Burgermeister

Going green with a cycleway above the streets

LIKE the walkways built in the canopies above rainforests, North Sydney Council hopes to lift pedestrians and cyclists above the urban jungle, with an ambitious plan to build an elevated path running from the southern end of the Harbour Bridge to as far north as Falcon Street.

The path, still at the concept stage and estimated to cost up to $30 million, would run 2 kilometres from the deck level of the bridge to St Leonards Park and Falcon Street along the Warringah Freeway. The council hopes that by bypassing North Sydney’s hilly streets, traffic congestion and car pollution, many more people will walk or ride to work.

Going green with a cycleway above the streets – Environment – smh.com.au. Sydney Morning Herald

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

Winners announced for Portland Courtyard Design Competition

The City of Portland invited designers to produce design possibilities of housing oriented to shared courtyards. Portland is promoting courtyard housing as an additional infill housing type that can provide a quality living environment at densities higher than conventional detached housing.

The winners of the Inner Site where Keith Rivera and Kristin Anderson of Santa Barbara, California and the winners of the Eastern Site where  Emory Baldwin, Shirley Tomita, Masumi Saito, Lara Normand, Jocelyn Freilinger, Shawna Sherman, and Clara Berridge of Seattle, Washington.

People can vote for their favorite design which will be close on December 28

The Winning Entries can be seen at the Competition Website


Portland Oregon’s Courtyard Housing Design Competition 

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