The greatest convergence in technological innovations for curbing energy demand, managing environmental pollution, and reducing carbon emissions, is taking place inside the urban footprint. New technologies available today make eliminating carbon emissions from transportation and energy generation the ‘low-hanging fruit’ in the push to clean the environment. In turn, positive results found in the places we call home present as new opportunities in the workplace, and in industries like forestry and mining.
Electric cars; 83% efficient LED-lighting; smart electric grids; wind and solar energy generation; these are combining with new building technologies for human-scale architecture; livable streets; walkable neighbourhoods; commuter rail transit and urban rooms to achieve what was once thought impossible. Canada and the U.S. will achieve energy self-sufficiency within our lifetime, raising the social functioning of our communities while adding value to our economies.
Similar developments underway in other areas of the globe are promising dramatic results in the hot-spots of geopolitical friction, including: the Middle East, the South China Sea, and the OPEC nations.
Continue reading “The sunset of coal and oil, and the rise of energy self-sufficiency in urbanism”
Architecture that oppresses the human spirit and curtails social freedom can look beautiful in pictures. Go figure! Hong Kong photographer Andy Yeung has created a series of images taken from the ground looking up—waaaay up! Yet, his photos document an architecture denying principles of human scale thriving since the times of ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome.
Continue reading “Look Up—Way Up!”
S & P 500 – Five Year Performance (Bloomberg)
As we approach the Lunar New Year festivities in China all the major western indices are drawing the same picture: it looks like a mountain top. As events unfold China contagion is the only explanation for why the western markets should be trending downward as they anticipate a hard landing in China.
Continue reading “Financial Markets Peak”
North Korean Video Still — Kim Jong-un watching ballistic missile test December 2015
On cue, one week ahead of expiry on China’s 6-month freeze on large share holders selling their stock, the markets crashed twice. Stocks in China fell in the first week of 2016 for a combined loss of 24% and have remained volatile through the rest of January. After the crash last August, when the markets steadied in response to government prohibitions on trading, the rest of us were left counting to six—January 2016 was the ‘next’ possible date for a market crisis in China. Continue reading “China Ripples Again”
The Erring Past: Places of low social functioning
In the World of Innovation, South Korea is king and Canada barely brakes the Top 20. Too bad this isn’t an international hockey competition! Continue reading “CANADA & innovation”
Mt. Reinier, Washington. LNV 2015
Today 82% of man-made Green House Gases (GHGs) originate from CO2 released by burning oil, coal and natural gas. More than half of the ‘dirty fuels’ are used to power transportation and generate electricity. Although we have the technology to switch to clean and renewable fuels, we lack the ideological, political and economic will to clean the mess of GHGs once and for all. Continue reading “2016: The Future is C-O-O-L”
Ben Bernanke and Larry Summers
As the prospect of ending Quantitative Easing dawns over the horizon, the need to frame a new global economic policy fills the screen. Leading the way is Larry Summers, former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury. With a new federal party in power Canada may be moving there already. Continue reading “Bernanke and Summers: Thing 1 & Thing 2”