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The Smart Grid in 2013: Charged for Growth

The Smart Grid in 2013: Charged for Growth | green streets | Scoop.it

In the past year, the grid has seen some remarkable highs, while also being tested to meet the basic needs of society.


On one hand, big advances have flourished, fundamentally changing the way we power our lives. Roof-mounted solar panels have gone from a costly oddity to a competitive selling point for many homes and battery-powered vehicles have gained traction.

On the other hand, the idea of progress has been challenged by a slew of weather woes that have shaken consumer confidence in our energy infrastructure. A series of intense storms, heat waves and drought made 2012 one of the toughest years globally for the grid in many years.

So what will 2013 bring? The growth of the smart grid.

A new stage is opening - where the public was once ambivalent about the smart grid, consumers are now starting to demand these improvements, spurred by the need to improve reliability, participation and the resiliency to recover from large-scale grid events.

Going into the new year, pressure to rebuild the northeast's grid with more resilience will further boost trends that point towards investment in these smart technologies to continue to expand by over 10% over the next five years.
And while efforts to date have focused on improving the grid's heavy-duty backbone, a look ahead suggests that coming smart grid efforts will reach more directly into everyday life.


Here's what's in store for 2013...

Lauren Moss's insight:

An interesting look at the future of the smart grid, renewable energy and the trends that are shaping the development of these technologies in the coming year.

In addition to energy generation, the article examines infrastructure, energy storage, distributed generation, public awareness, and social networks as communication tools...

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thoughts, ideas + dialogues on urban revitalization, smart growth + neighborhood development
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Anatomy of a Smart City

Anatomy of a Smart City | green streets | Scoop.it

The 19th century was a century of empires, 20th century was a century of nation states and the 21st century will be a century of cities...


This outstanding infographic (courtesy of postscapes.com) begins with some information about our current state of urbanization.


Did you know that 1.3 million people are moving to cities each week?! It then explains the need for smart cities and delves into what is required to establish these intelligent connected environments, how the smart city may take various forms in the developing worlds and what specific technologies are necessary to achieve such grand goals in practice.

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Margarida Sá Costa's curator insight, August 8, 2013 11:27 AM

cities of the future....future new human political organizations?

Grd Lyon-millenaire3's comment, August 19, 2013 6:06 AM
It supposes an organization at the world level but which and with whom? Doubtless adds us in a transitional period. The best is yet to come.
Katherine Correll's curator insight, November 9, 5:48 PM

Considering the rural to urban migration and how smart cities can be!

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Thomas Heatherwick Greens Pier55 for New York's Lower West Side

Thomas Heatherwick Greens Pier55 for New York's Lower West Side | green streets | Scoop.it

British designer thomas heatherwick is to build a public park and performance space on manhattan’s lower west side. 

Entitled Pier55, the project will replace the dilapidated pier 54 with construction expected to start in 2016. Costing in excess of $130 million USD, the scheme be funded primarily by the diller-von furstenberg family who will work alongside the hudson river park trust in developing the site.

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8 ideas for the future of cities

8 ideas for the future of cities | green streets | Scoop.it

In 2012, the TED Prize was awarded to an idea: The City2.0, a place to celebrate actions taken by citizens around the world to make their cities more livable, beautiful and sustainable. This week, The City2.0 website evolves. On the relaunched TEDCity2.org, you’ll find great talks on topics like housing, education and food, and how they relate to life in the bustling metropolis. You’ll find video explorations of 10 award-winning local projects that received funding through this TED Prize wish, and resources for those hoping to spark change in their own cities. The site will also be the home of all future TEDCity2.0 projects. In other words, it’s an online haven for everyone who wants to create the city of the future.

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Accessibility and Urban Elevators: Urban Link by VAUMM

Accessibility and Urban Elevators: Urban Link by VAUMM | green streets | Scoop.it

Spanish architects VAUMM have found a niche in Errenteria, a town near San Sebastián where they have now completed three ascensores urbanos (‘urban elevators’). The region underwent rapid industrialisation in the 1960s that caused residential construction to climb steep hillsides. The resulting urban obstacle course continues to present problems of accessibility and connectivity for the aging population that the construction was originally designed to accommodate. VAUMM’sascensores act as vertical cross-streets, creating navigable pathways between previously disconnected places. 

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What Copenhagen can teach us about cycling

What Copenhagen can teach us about cycling | green streets | Scoop.it

From ‘green wave’ traffic lights and majestic harbour bike bridges to digital countdowns and foot rests at junctions, the Danish capital is full of clever ideas to improve city cycling...


Via Bentejui Hernández Acosta
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Has Floating Architecture’s Moment Finally Arrived?

Has Floating Architecture’s Moment Finally Arrived? | green streets | Scoop.it

From London to China, the movement to build on the water’s surface is gaining steam.

Floating cities have captivated society’s imagination for centuries, from the development of Venice a millennium ago to Triton, designed for Tokyo Bay by Buckminster Fuller in the 1960s. But it wasn’t until the last decade or so that more fully realized, just-might-actually-happen sea-based urban endeavors have emerged, made more urgent by rising sea levels and rural-to-urban migration. In the last six months, Business Insider, Bloomberg and The Guardian have all run stories asking the same question: “Has the time come for floating cities?”

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Next Up For Brooklyn, an Urban Gondola

Next Up For Brooklyn, an Urban Gondola | green streets | Scoop.it

The East River Skyway aims to alleviate transit congestion along the Brooklyn waterfront by taking commuters off the grid.

The East River Skyway is a proposal for a multi-phase urban gondola to connect the growing residential and commercial corridors between Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens. The proposal calls for an aerial transit system to be built out in stages, with the first line connecting the Lower East Side and Williamsburg. Subsequent lines might include a connection between Lower Manhattan, Dumbo, and Brooklyn Navy Yard, as well as a line threading between Midtown, Roosevelt Island, Long Island City, and Williamsburg...

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Norm Miller's curator insight, September 25, 4:31 PM

These become great for residents and tourists but the lawyers often find the liabilities too much of a concern when the gondolas pass over roads, bridges or people in some way.  Hope this one actually happens.

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How San Francisco Is Designing Its Metro Train of the Future

How San Francisco Is Designing Its Metro Train of the Future | green streets | Scoop.it
BART cars are about to get their first real overhaul since the system launched in 1972.

Nearly half a century after the system's launch, BART will get its own long-awaited makeover. The so-called "Fleet of the Future" plan will put between 775 and 1,000 new BART cars on the tracks between 2017 and 2023, at a cost between $2.5 billion and $3.3 billion. But the overhaul is more of a full reimagining than a cosmetic touchup—from the big-picture look of the car itself to the minutiae of floor patterning and handrail grips. BART used the chance to rethink how the trains look on the outside and feel on the inside, how they accommodate the crowds of today and the near future, and how they subtly control rush-hour crowds and all those bicycles...

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Infrastructure in U.S. Cities: New Urban Bikeway Design Guide

Infrastructure in U.S. Cities: New Urban Bikeway Design Guide | green streets | Scoop.it

In 2000, the District of Columbia had three miles of bike lanes. Today, the district has roughly 80 miles of bike infrastructure, and many other U.S. cities have made similar investments. Bicycling Magazine’s top 50 bike friendly cities includes some unsurprising places at the top – Minneapolis, Portland, Boulder, Seattle – but also shows how cities such as Cleveland, Miami, and Baltimore have made important strides in the last several years to improve their bike systems. Several are members of the National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO), which has put out its best-selling Urban Bikeway Design Guide, first released in 2011, now with an updated second edition this year.

NACTO’s updated second edition is part of their “sustained commitment to making city streets safer for everyone using them.” Reformatted with improved structure, it features photos, diagrams, and 3-D renderings of wide-ranging best practices in design for bike infrastructure...

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Copenhagen's 'Bicycle Snake': Aiming to Become the Best Cycling City in The World

Copenhagen's 'Bicycle Snake': Aiming to Become the Best Cycling City in The World | green streets | Scoop.it

The Ambitious Cykelslangen by DISSING+WEITLING enables Copenhagen's vision to become the best cycling city in the world by the end of 2015.

The 235-meter-long orange snake meanders 5.5 meters high above sea level from Havneholmen through the mall Fisketorvet, ending at Kalvebod Brygge. This “snake” is actually a ramp and a bridge, called the “Cykelslangen — The Bicycle Snake,” that provides more than 12,000 bicyclists with a safe route through this busy district every day.

The architecture firm DISSING+WEITLING was asked to design a ramp to replace a nearby staircase. Instead of just designing a simple ramp, they went a step further and designed a bridge. The result is a destination and focal point that can be seen for miles from the air and has also completely transformed the area for all who enjoy it.

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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, September 17, 8:08 PM

Option : Urban change and management

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A Concept ‘Vertical City’ Skyscraper That Supports An Ecosystem

A Concept ‘Vertical City’ Skyscraper That Supports An Ecosystem | green streets | Scoop.it

London-based design and academic research architecture practice SURE Architecture has designed and developed a concept skyscraper with multiple functions.
Called ‘Endless City’, the organic skyscraper is built around six steel tubes with an “endless” ramp that goes around the building from the ground floor, all the way up to the top. 
It also features energy-saving and waste management elements that give the building another purpose—supporting an ecosystem. Plazas and communal spaces will occupy most parts of the skyscraper. 
According to the architects, the shape of the skyscraper “attempts to maximize passive energy and reduce artificial lighting and ventilation”...

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Grant Graves's curator insight, August 21, 10:21 AM

Cities of the future will evolve as our ideals and control of the world change. Future cities as such would not have traffic jams , population woes, congestion, and many other issues that near all cities of today face. In this manner, cities will be designed for the ever changing needs of humans.  These cities will probably be build from the ground up instead of in an existing town or city. Overall, the future in these directions, will allow for a better advancement of the human race as a whole. -GG

Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, August 24, 9:39 PM

Future sustainability - urban architecture

Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, August 24, 9:40 PM

Future sustainability - urban architecture

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7 Big Ways Cities Have Transformed Themselves For Bikes

7 Big Ways Cities Have Transformed Themselves For Bikes | green streets | Scoop.it

The number of bikes in our cities is increasing, and with that increase we’re also seeing some major changes in the way cities are designed. Engineers are giving bikes their own bridges, tunnels, overpasses, even escalators, making biking feel like it’s an essential, permanent part of the city.

Last week, Copenhagen announced an elevated cycleway for the Øresund Bridge, an existing bridge which connects the city to Malmö, Sweden. The second longest bridge in Europe, and at about eight miles long, will likely be the longest dedicated bike bridge in the world. That’s a serious commitment to the cyclists in the region, but also to the health and well-being for all residents. Customised bike infrastructure is more comfortable, convenient, and safe for those who choose to travel on two wheels, but it’s also safer for pedestrians as well. As the biking movement gains momentum, we’ll be seeing cities devoting more space and energy towards these awesome bike-only improvements that make streets safer for everyone...


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Catherine Devin's curator insight, August 4, 2:48 AM

La nouvelle impulsion donnée à l'utilisation de la bicyclette à des fins de déplacement comme de loisir en lien avec l'essor des pistes cyclables dans les villes et à l'orée de celles-ci représente un exemple réussi et concret de notre capacité à évoluer vers un mode de vie plus durable dans certains lieux... Et nous n'en sommes qu'à l'amorce.

 

Ce mouvement repose sur beaucoup plus qu'une injonction à la moindre consommation de carburant/ émission de CO2 ou même la contrainte de coût ou à l'inverse une impulsion citoyenne. Il relève plutôt d'un travail de marketing fondamental par rapport à un objectif d'accroître l'utilisation de la bicyclette en ville.

Il a fallu comprendre les citadins :  identifier les leviers pour les engager à prendre un vélo (vitesse et liberté de déplacement,  activité physique, plaisir...) ainsi que lever les freins à l'utilisation (sécurité, accès à un vélo, parking vélo...) et au final,  mettre en place toutes les conditions de ce retour au vélo : parcs de bicyclettes à louer, voies cyclables...  associée à une stratégie et des outils de communication multiples et permanents.

Julie Wicks's curator insight, August 28, 1:06 AM

Place and Liveability Geography Year 7. 'The strategies used to enhance the liveability of places, especially for young people, including examples from Australia and Europe(ACHGK047)'

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Vo Trong Nghia plans bamboo "lotus pods" for Vietnam's expo pavilion

Vo Trong Nghia plans bamboo "lotus pods" for Vietnam's expo pavilion | green streets | Scoop.it

A proposal by Vo Trong Nghia Architects to build towering bamboo structures modelled on lotus pods has been selected for Vietnam's pavilion at the World Expo 2015 in Milan.

Responding to the expo's theme "Feeding the Planet, Energy for life", the architects describe the consumption of the lotus – Vietnam's national flower – as an example for sustainable living.

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Embracing the Future: the Smartest Cities In The World

Embracing the Future: the Smartest Cities In The World | green streets | Scoop.it
These cities that are doing the best at embracing the future are focusing on improving technology, equality, sharing, civic participation, and more.

Over the past several years, the idea of the being "smart" has emerged as a key mechanism for cities to find innovative solutions to the challenges that they are facing. Increased demand for infrastructure, housing, transportation, jobs, energy, food and water are all straining city governments and infrastructure, as people around the world flock to urban centers in hopes of a better life and more opportunity. For many years, the push to create smarter cities was led by technology companies looking for uses (and buyers) for their products. But in recent years, cities have begun to think more holistically about what being a smart city could mean, and have innovated new ways to modernize how a city serves its citizens.

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Three Creative Reuses of Aging Infrastructure

Three Creative Reuses of Aging Infrastructure | green streets | Scoop.it

Just outside the Javits Center in New York City, attendees of the 2014 ULI Fall Meeting walked the recently opened final leg of the High Line, which wraps like a veranda around the massive Hudson Yards development site. Inside Javits, speakers at a concurrent session on the creative reuse of aging infrastructure added three case studies to the growing list of success stories proving that development opportunities can still be found in the spaces created by transportation infrastructure...

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Cities Look to Micro Units as an Option for Affordable Housing

Cities Look to Micro Units as an Option for Affordable Housing | green streets | Scoop.it

Chances are, if you live in a city, you live alone. More than half of all adults living in New York, Austin, Denver, and Seattle live by themselves; in Washington, D.C., 71 percent of adults are single. In the United States as a whole, the number of single-person households has quintupled since 1960 and now represents 27 percent of the total, according to census figures.

This dramatic change in demographics, coupled with the recent economic crisis and growing environmental concerns among the general population, is affecting attitudes about lifestyle. Americans are shifting from having more and consuming more to being content with less—particularly when it comes to house size. A smaller home means less to heat, less to furnish, and less to maintain. And, generally speaking, less out of pocket.

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OMA and Olin win competition to design garden bridge for Washington DC

OMA and Olin win competition to design garden bridge for Washington DC | green streets | Scoop.it

Rem Koolhaas' firm OMA has teamed up with Olin to create the 11th Street Bridge Park – a raised garden spanning Washington DC's Anacostia River.

Netherlands-based OMA and Olin beat three other design teams to win a government-supported competition to design a bridge that could provide a new "civic space" for the USA's capital city.

The project, currently expected to cost $35 million (£22 million), was proposed to find new uses for a series of piers that previously supported a major road crossing across the Anacostia River, which has been moved to a new location.

The new design is comparable to New York's popular High Line park andThomas Heatherwick's garden bridge proposal for the River Thames in London.


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Stress and the City: innovative housing solutions for urban centers

Stress and the City: innovative housing solutions for urban centers | green streets | Scoop.it

It's a well-known story by now: in the wake of a shift toward city living, and as housing prices continue to rise and wages stagnate, middle-class Americans are being squeezed out of urban centers. The problem is not isolated to high-cost cities. A New York Times analysis found that median rent is more than 30 percent of the median income in 90 U.S. municipalities, surpassing the federal government's benchmark indicating when a household becomes “burdened.” Nationwide, half of renting households spend a third of their gross income on rent, while their median income hovered at $32,500 in 2012 (as compared to $50,500 for all households)—approaching its lowest level in nearly 20 years, according to the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. To combat this trend, staving off an exodus of the workforce and addressing growing income inequality, a number of cities are experimenting with a range of innovative ideas to create affordable housing.

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5 Cities Revolutionizing the Role of the Urban Train Station

A recent Washington Post feature entitled “Reimagining Union Station,” discusses the proposed expansion and redevelopment of Union Station in Washington, DC, a transit hub with the daily task of servicing nearly 100,000 train, bus, and subway passengers.

Despite its vital and iconic qualities, the Station suffers from a variety of structural and programmatic inefficiencies, and reminds us of the effects transportation-oriented design has on an urban environment, and the importance of maintaining a high degree of density within our cities. In the article, several other stations around the world are highlighted — particularly Grand Central Station in New York City, as good examples of how train stations ought to be designed. Stations such as the SSB Train Station in Basel, Switzerland, the Berlin Central Station in Germany, the Salzburg Central Station in Austria and the redevelopment plans for Los Angeles's Union Station match his description, both honoring the commuter experience while enhancing their larger role within the urban environment...

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How Will Automated Cars Change Landscape Architecture?

How Will Automated Cars Change Landscape Architecture? | green streets | Scoop.it

A look at how the inevitable technology of automated cars will change the face of landscape architecture.


Our cities were built to be the backbone support of the industrial revolution. Our roads were built to accommodate the car and truck. Our soil is radically altered due to fertilizers and farm practices of the past. Time and time again we can look at the trend of technology being introduced and a few decades later it fundamentally changes the way we look at the landscape...

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Norm Miller's curator insight, September 25, 4:34 PM

Parking lots can now be further away and we will be able to work while in our cars without endangering others.  Suburbs can be further away.  We will change our cars to be more like mini offices and lounges.  Sounds great to me.  

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Urban Plunge: Swimming in the City

Urban Plunge: Swimming in the City | green streets | Scoop.it

An exhibition at the Roca London Gallery presents a series of architectural proposals to reclaim natural water sources in London, New York and Copenhagen for recreational use. We spoke to curator Jane Withers about how we can better exploit our rivers and harbours.

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Singapore offers a Global Lesson in Green

Singapore offers a Global Lesson in Green | green streets | Scoop.it

A complete lack of natural resources is prompting the urban island city-state of Singapore to generate its own green infrastructure. Its rapidly growing population, which is one-and-a-half times that of the city of Los Angeles but spread across an area half the size, is another driver. And while the green push is most visible in the walls and bays of vegetation that garnish its stock of high-rise apartments and offices, its impact is far deeper. That’s thanks in part to a government-led sustainable-building certification program that aims to green 80 percent of the city-state’s existing building stock by 2030...

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Clarence Wong's curator insight, September 5, 12:24 PM

Singapore is a green city role model. Can you imagine if all cities and governments around the world put the same kind of effort as Singapore to make the majority of their buildings green?

 

By the way, Singapore is also leading the way this year so far in Asian outbound foreign investment.

http://www.cbre.com.hk/EN/aboutus/mediacentre/asianews/Pages/Newsflash---Asian-Outbound-Investment-1H-2014.aspx

Clarence Wong's curator insight, September 5, 12:25 PM

Singapore is a green city role model. Can you imagine if all cities and governments around the world put the same kind of effort as Singapore to make the majority of their buildings green?

 

By the way, Singapore is also leading the way this year so far in Asian outbound foreign investment.

http://www.cbre.com.hk/EN/aboutus/mediacentre/asianews/Pages/Newsflash---Asian-Outbound-Investment-1H-2014.aspx

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3 Clever Ideas To Re-Use San Francisco's Aging Infrastructure

3 Clever Ideas To Re-Use San Francisco's Aging Infrastructure | green streets | Scoop.it

Called SF RE:MADE, San Francisco-based IwamotoScott Architecture propose up-cycling Candlestick Park and two other out-of-use waterfront landmarks, the Hunters Point Crane and the Islais Creek Silos, providing alternative uses for aging 20th-century structures whose original purposes have become outdated.

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Suzette Jackson's curator insight, August 17, 8:28 PM

Regenerative design requires a certain boldness by government, the courage to acknowledge when infrastructure is outdated and the future is on a different path. Kudo to SF RE:MADE

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Floating cities: Is the ocean humanity’s next frontier?

Floating cities: Is the ocean humanity’s next frontier? | green streets | Scoop.it

Floating cities are nothing new. In the early 1960s, Buckminster Fuller designed a city – Triton – that was intended to float off the coast of Tokyo Bay. It was later considered but never commissioned by the US government.

“Three-quarters of our planet Earth is covered with water, most of which may float organic cities,” Fuller explains in his book Critical Path. “Floating cities pay no rent to landlords. They are situated on the water, which they desalinate and recirculate in many useful and non-polluting ways.”

Fifty years on, with heavy pollution causing climate change and rising sea levels, Fuller’s floating city concept is being seriously considered as an antidote to those problems.

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Maricarmen Husson's curator insight, August 7, 11:18 PM

Ciudades flotantes....será la humanidad del océano la próxima frontera?....

Eric Chan Wei Chiang's curator insight, August 12, 4:42 AM

With the advent of climate change and sea level rise, such cities may be necessary in the near future.

 

China has may build a floating city. Chinese Construction Company has already has already commissioned plans to test this ambitious project from a smaller scale, beginning in 2015. http://sco.lt/9K70an

 

The eco-friendly project is expected to be self-sufficient, with on-island food production, power generation, and waste management systems. However, there is little information about how food security would be achieved out in the ocean.

 

More scoops on climate change and food security here:

http://www.scoop.it/t/aquascaping-and-nature/?tag=Climate+Change

http://www.scoop.it/t/aquascaping-and-nature?q=food+security

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The City We Want | Archi-Ninja

The City We Want | Archi-Ninja | green streets | Scoop.it

One could argue that humanity has come to a critical point when looking at our current and future way of habitation.  Industrial civilization is moving towards the destruction of our planet, there is overwhelming evidence of this everywhere. We live without ration and we take our current condition for granted as if it were normal and somehow “part of human nature”, whereas in reality, it is the opposite.

There are lots of people who are working to make a difference, these people do not conform to the given social relationships that perpetuate inequality, injustice, scarcity and violence. For as long as there has been oppression there has been resistance and there are many of ways (theoretical and practical, or even both) in which we can all contribute to the struggle against our current self-destructive way of living...

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Vincent Lahondère's curator insight, July 31, 2:52 PM

Analyse critique du monde des villes (en anglais)

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Chicago's New High Tech Lamp Posts Will Track People & Pollution

Chicago's New High Tech Lamp Posts Will Track People & Pollution | green streets | Scoop.it

Starting this summer, the city is installing a network of high tech lamp posts that will keep track of all kinds of information about the environment and people passing by through sensors. The data collected by Web-connected sensors will be used to help urban planners make the city safer and make traffic flow better. All of this while also tracking environmental factors like air quality.

More information at the article.

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Norm Miller's curator insight, July 9, 12:09 PM

great use of technology