Saturday, July 29, 2017

Hawaii leads the way with renewable energy AND universal basic income

One of the positive benefits of having such an absurdly regressive federal government in place right now is that it has spurred the states to take matters into their own hands. This, of course, is closer to what the US was founded on, and throughout its history the states have often pioneered initiatives that have then spread nationally.

So, Hawaii is going nuts right now. Not one but TWO amazing explorations.

First there's Universal Basic Income. This is an idea that's been picking up speed recently. It's not that Hawaii has suddenly implemented it, but they've become the first state to start evaluating what it would mean and what it would take to put it in place. You can read more here about Hawaii's steps, and about the fascinating concept of UBI in general.

Then there's energy. The Hawaii legislature right now is considering a bill that would require all transportation in the Aloha state to run on renewable energy by 2045. Hawaii's climate is very sensitive to the changes from climate change, and because of their remote location they also spend billions on imported oil. This push would address both those major issues.

And that's just ground transportation. A bill is already in law in the state that all electricity must be generated by renewable means by 2045. The law passed last July. With an abundance of water and a sunny environment, Hawaii is primed to harness renewable energy in many ways.

Even better, officials in the state say that the goal could actually be reached ahead of schedule, as early as 2040. Personally, I think it will be sooner, as it's hard to accurately predict and account for the snowballing effects of leaps in technology.

Read more here om Global Citizen.

Friday, July 7, 2017

The innovation of green roofs

I've been in the Javits Center a ton of times (yes, mostly for Comic-Con) but never knew they had implemented a green roof a few years back. Our NYC apartment actually looks down on a really cool green roof, of the new Stuyvesant Town management office. Check out this NPR video to see how turning roofs green can benefit cities in lots of surprising ways.