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Squad Mobility Redefines Affordable With Its $6,300 Solar-Powered Urban Electric Vehicle

Squad Mobility solar-powered EVUpstart Squad Mobility set up shop in Amsterdam to develop a new generation of urban solar electric vehicles at truly affordable prices. And by affordable, they mean affordable, with a target retail price of €5,750 (ex. VAT) / $ 6,300

CleanTechnica

Urban Densification Is The World War II That Will Drive The Electric Bike Boom

We’re not in a post-War period when major industries are looking for new things to build. We’re not in a particularly high gasoline price time frame either. Yet electric bicycles are taking over city streets globally

CleanTechnica

Urban insects are more resilient in extreme weather – Phys.Org


Phys.Org

Urban insects are more resilient in extreme weather
Phys.Org
According to the Rutgers-Camden researcher, the study supports the hypothesis that organisms living in high-stress urban medians possess adaptions to disturbance, making them more resilient to the effects of extreme weather events than organisms living

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Square Roots Raises $5.4 Million To Grow Its Urban Farming Incubator

Square Roots is establishing itself as a leading light in urban agriculture. The Brooklyn-based startup has just raised $ 5.4 million in seed funding that will be used to empower food entrepreneurs and increase urban farming across the

Square Roots Raises $ 5.4 Million To Grow Its Urban Farming Incubator was originally published on CleanTechnica.

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CleanTechnica

Masdar City Raising The Bar For Sustainable Urban Development

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Originally published on Green Building Elements. By Dawn Killough Masdar City, near Abu Dhabi, has set its sights on being the most sustainable city on the planet, and it is well on the way to meeting that goal. Development started in 2008 and is expected to continue for at least the next five years, with [&hellip

Masdar City Raising The Bar For Sustainable Urban Development was originally published on CleanTechnica.

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CleanTechnica

Shifting 10% Of Urban Trips To Cycling Could Save $24 Trillion By 2050

The-Benefits-of-Shifting-to-Cycling-ITDP

One key component in the struggle to keep greenhouse gas emissions down is low-carbon transportation, and while there are many high-tech solutions at play in the search for solutions, there is at least one that requires little more than a willingness to change our habits. Well, that and a set of wheels and some physical [&hellip

Shifting 10% Of Urban Trips To Cycling Could Save $ 24 Trillion By 2050 was originally published on CleanTechnica.

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CleanTechnica

First Full-Scale Urban Hyperloop System Coming To California — 5-Mile Stretch In Central Valley Planned

Whatever your opinion on the technology may be, it looks as though the proposed Hyperloop transportation system previously championed by Elon Musk is now actually going somewhere, based on a recent press statement. According to the statement, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies has come to agreement with the developers of a “sustainable 21st century town” being developed

First Full-Scale Urban Hyperloop System Coming To California — 5-Mile Stretch In Central Valley Planned was originally published on CleanTechnica.

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CleanTechnica

Giant Gleaming Eggs Will Help Solve Urban Water, Energy And Waste Problems



Not too long ago, cities could be labeled strictly as takers: taking in food, water, energy and other resources, while dumping out mountains of garbage and oceans of polluted wastewater. But take a look at the gigantic egg-shaped structures that dominate New York City’s Newtown Creek wastewater treatment plant, and you’re looking at the key to a sustainable future.

The distinctive landmarks are digesters that convert municipal wastewater into biogas, and New York has just announced a new food waste recycling/wastewater project that will enable the digesters to accept food scraps from households, schools, and other institutions.

Newtown Creek will convert food scraps to biogas

Newtown Creek wastewater treatment plant (cropped) by Victoria Belanger.

Food Waste Recycling And Biogas

The new project is a giant step forward for New York, because it will enable the city to sell biogas from the digesters into the commercial natural gas market.

Although the city has long reclaimed some of the biogas to help power operations at Newtown Creek, the raw gas is unsuitable for domestic purposes because it is too “wet” and rich in carbon dioxide.

San Antonio, Texas actually lays claim to the first commercial wastewater biogas hookup in the US,  but if the Newtown Creek project is adopted at the city’s 13 other treatment plants, the New York project will be by far the largest.

In partnership with the company Waste Management and utility National Grid, the Newtown Creek project will convert food waste/wastewater biogas to a commercial-grade product that can be sold off site, with the goal of reclaiming 100 percent of biogas generated by the digesters.

The implications for sustainable urban development are enormous. One critical obstacle that cities face is the skyrocketing cost of wastewater treatment, so the prospect of offsetting costs by generating and reclaiming energy would enable more wastewater treatment projects to get off the ground more quickly.

It’s worth noting here that digesters house a process that is, literally, natural digestion. Digesters create an optimal environment for microbes to feed on the organic materials in wastewater. Along with generating gas, the microbial process provides an additional level of wastewater treatment without added chemicals and with a minimal use of energy.

The digestion process also yields an organic soil-like material that can be reclaimed as compost. In short, digesters provides a sustainability three-for-one: cleaner effluent, a soil enhancer to grow more biomass, and reusable biogas.

The reclamation of biogas from human waste also offers an intriguing window into next-generation urban sustainability, by harnessing the energy generated by huge numbers of people as they move through the processes of daily life.

Another good example of urban energy harvesting from “people power” is piezoelectricity, in which certain materials generate electricity when exposed to stress. This effect is being explored as a means of generating energy from crowded urban facilities such as train station platforms and even dance floors.

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Devices that harvest kinetic energy from the simple act of walking are also in development, and the principle of kinetic energy can also be applied to people-powered devices common in the urban environment such as turnstiles and revolving doors.

By extending the people power principle to the mechanics of urban life, you get energy harvesting opportunities from roadways as well elevators, commuter trains, and stop-and-go traffic in the form of regenerative braking.

Put it all together and you have the city of the future as a gigantic energy generating and resource reclamation dynamo.

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[This article has been submitted to Masdar Engage]

Giant Gleaming Eggs Will Help Solve Urban Water, Energy And Waste Problems was originally published on: CleanTechnica. To read more from CleanTechnica, join over 30,000 other subscribers: RSS | Facebook | Twitter.

CleanTechnica

Gizmo Uses Lung Cells To Sniff Out Health Hazards In Urban Air

Scientists are trying to figure out how chemicals in the air interact with each other to make people sick. So they’re building an instrument — a “lung in a box” — that goes way beyond the usual chemical monitors.

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Environment

Stop trying to save the planet, says ‘urban ranger’ Jenny Price

jenny price
kcet.org

Environmentalists and green marketers are always talking about “saving the planet.” Buy this car, this laundry detergent, or this light bulb and you will help save “the planet” or “nature” or “the environment.” Jenny Price, for one, wishes they’d stop.

Price is an activist, historian, and self-appointed Los Angeles Urban Ranger. When she’s not trying to inject a little humor into the generally unfunny world of environmental preaching with her satiric blog Green Me Up, JJ, she gives tours of the concretized L.A. River. She’d be happy to tell you why she loves the river, why it is every bit a part and parcel of “Nature,” and why she thinks that places like this have got to be at the core of the environmental movement.

When it comes to rhetoric about “saving the planet,” she has two main beefs: First, it encourages a “greener-than-thou” form of preachy consumerism that does not encourage real change nor help those most in need. Second, the rhetoric clings desperately to the historical notion that nature = pristine wilderness, obscuring the muddy, mixed up reality visible in places like her beloved L.A. River.

Price, who calls herself a “lapsed wilderness-loving environmentalist,” doesn’t think we should stop caring about how sustainable our consumption is, but she does believe that we need to inhabit nature instead of trying to save it. We need to think a lot more about people, she says, and about creating communities and providing food and jobs both sustainably and equitably. In short, we need to deal with the real world.

We sat down with Price recently to talk about her street-level view of environmentalism, and how we can create a new movement that transcends class and socioeconomic divides.

Download: jenny_price.mp3

This interview is part of the Generation Anthropocene project, in which Stanford students partake in an inter-generational dialogue with scholars about living in an age when humans have become a major force shaping our world.

Filed under: Cities, Climate & Energy
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