Turn any bike into an e-bike with UrbanX’s drop-in wheel

March 20, 2017 by  
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Are you intrigued by electric bicycles but already own a regular bike? UrbanX created a drop-in wheel that can turn almost any old bicycle into a cool e-bike. The wheel only takes around one minute to install and boasts an impressive range of 30 miles on a single charge. The UrbanX bike wheel simplifies e-bikes: add their wheel and you’re good to go. The product adds an additional 15 pounds to a bike, which isn’t as heavy or clunky as some electric bikes can be. The company behind the product offers the wheel in six sizes; they say it will fit 99 percent of bikes. Their compact battery charges in an hour and a half. Related: Juicer electric bikes bridge dorky environmentalism and cool-guy style https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/934648866/urbanx-convert-any-bike-to-an-electric-bike-in-60/description The company offers a 240 watt motor and a 350 watt motor. The 240W motor’s top speed is 15 miles per hour (mph) while the 350W motor’s top speed is 20mph. Bikers can also pedal as normal; UrbanX includes a three level pedal assist system that can be switched via an app. UrbanX says their product “works smarter, not harder by using an algorithm to ensure 100 percent of motor output is utilized to power your ride.” They came up with their patent-pending Sinus Algorithm Controlling System to boost the battery and motor’s efficiency. UrbanX isn’t the first company to come out with such a product; GeoOrbital also recently unveiled a bike wheel that converts bicycles into e-bikes within 60 seconds. The look of the two wheels are quite different, and UrbanX’s 240W motor wheel is much less expensive than GeoOrbital’s wheel. To help bring their product to market, UrbanX also turned to crowdfunding . With over 30 days to go, they’ve raised more than double their initial goal of $50,000 on Kickstarter . The limited early bird prices for the tires start at $299. UrbanX ambitiously says they’ll be delivering the wheels this summer. Via TreeHugger Images via UrbanX Electric Wheel Facebook

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Turn any bike into an e-bike with UrbanX’s drop-in wheel

The world’s "most compact folding bike" fits in your carry-on luggage

January 16, 2017 by  
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Imagine a bike that folds down so small you can take it on an airplane in your carry-on luggage. It exists – and it’s called the Kwiggle . The sleek, city-ready vehicle designed by German engineer Karsten Bettin can be folded up and stowed under a subway seat, in a car trunk, or even in an airplane’s overhead compartment. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6My3Xd40YI4 The Kwiggle is the “most compact folding bike in the world,” according to the company . The unique vehicle allows riders to speed through cities upright, and it can be folded in a snappy 10 seconds. The bike weighs in at about 19 pounds, and it can hit a top speed of nearly 20 miles per hour. And it folds up small enough to fit into a 55 by 40 by 25 centimeter carry-on bag, or a 1.8 by 1.3 by 0.8 foot carry-on. Related: World’s lightest folding bike weighs less than a watermelon A wrought alloy bike frame makes the Kwiggle stable and tough, and its aluminum wheels are highly corrosion resistant. An adjustable seat allows riders from 4’6 to 6’2 to ride the Kwiggle with ease. The upright riding position has other benefits beyond a higher point of view. According to the company, orthopedic specialists love the Kwiggle. The bike “uniquely supports the mobility of the back and prevents tension in the should and neck area,” the company says on their website . That makes the bike not only a perfect fit for swift urban travel, but for exercising as well. Bettin has developed the Kwiggle over seven years, and he’s now selling the bike on Kickstarter . Backers can snag a one-speed Kwiggle for 1,240 Euros, or around $1,315. Two-speed Kwiggles start at 1,340 Euros or about $1,421. You can check out the campaign here . + Kwiggle Via Treehugger Images via Kwiggle Facebook and screenshot

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The world’s "most compact folding bike" fits in your carry-on luggage

World’s largest CO2 sink stores 27,000 grams of carbon per square meter

January 16, 2017 by  
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Natural areas that capture and store carbon on Earth are becoming an increasingly precious resource, and researchers may have found the mother of all of these in an unlikely place – a small bay in Denmark they claim holds a world-record amount of carbon . According to Phys.org , seagrass and underwater meadows have the capacity to store large amounts of carbon dioxide that has garnered the attention of scientists looking to find ways to reduce carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere. While meadows of this kind of seagrass are found throughout the world, scientists have pinpointed one meadow in Denmark, which they say is the most efficient. The meadow is located in a bay called Thurøbund on the island of Thurø in the South Funen Archipelago of Denmark , a place where Professor Mariann Holmer of the University of Southern Denmark says has special conditions that add to its carbon capturing capabilities. Related: Breakthrough technology turns coal plant CO2 into baking powder Many seagrass meadows around the world have been investigated. Recently, I was part of a study investigating and measuring carbon storing capabilities of 10 seagrass meadows in the Baltic Sea. No place comes even close to Thurøbund,” says Professor Holmer . “It is a very protected bay—and also very productive. So the seagrass thrives and when the plants die, they remain in the meadow. They are buried in the sediment, and in this process, their carbon content gets stored with them. In Finland, the seagrass grows in open coast areas, which means that the dead plants are much more often washed out to sea, taking the carbon with them. Once the carbon has been taken out to the sea, it is unclear what happens to it.” To put it into perspective with some numbers, Thurøbund stores 27,000 grams of carbon per square meter, and the highest numbers found in other locations around the world have never been more than 10,000 to 11,000 grams per meter squared. Via Phys.org Images via Arnaud Abadie and James St. John , Flickr Creative Commons

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World’s largest CO2 sink stores 27,000 grams of carbon per square meter

Critics outraged by UK plan to build 1.8 mile tunnel under Stonehenge

January 16, 2017 by  
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One of Britain’s most well-known archaeological landmarks could soon have a tunnel carved below it. The government unveiled plans for a 1.8 mile tunnel running under Stonehenge as part of a $2.4 billion infrastructure investment, hoping to slash traffic plaguing the area. But not everyone is happy with the government’s plan; some experts believe a tunnel could destroy undiscovered artifacts. The British government is planning a $2.4 billion investment for the country’s A303 road, hoping to upgrade it into a “high quality, high performing route” that will improve trips for millions of people, according to the Department for Transport’s statement on the project. Part of the upgrades include a tunnel passing beneath the famous site. Officials say the tunnel would slash congestion and bolster the local economy. Related: Archaeologists reveal fresh details about 4,500-year-old “New Stonehenge” English Heritage , the charity managing more than 400 historic sites, backs the tunnel. UNESCO , which in 1986 designated Stonehenge as a World Heritage Site, say they could get behind the idea, but have not yet viewed final plans. Historian Tom Holland fears a tunnel could destroy the key historical site. He told CNN, “Recent finds show this place is the birthplace of Britain, and its origins go back to the resettlement of this island after the Ice Age. It staggers belief that we can inject enormous quantities of concrete to build a tunnel that will last at best 100 years and therefore decimate a landscape that has lasted for millennia.” Local chamber of commerce president and Amesbury Museum chairman Andy Rhind-Tutt is also against the tunnel, saying it won’t even really improve traffic and will “put a time bomb of irreversible destruction on one of the world’s greatest untouched landscapes.” The public can comment on the tunnel plan until March 5, and the government plans to announce the preferred route later in 2017. Construction could start in 2020, according to a Highways England spokesperson, and could be completed in four years. Via CNN Images via Good Free Photos and Pixabay

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Critics outraged by UK plan to build 1.8 mile tunnel under Stonehenge

Norway builds unique Bicycle Hotel to encourage more commuters to travel on two wheels

November 30, 2016 by  
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Norway’s “best cycling city” has added a new feature to make two-wheeled transport even easier for local residents and visitors. The new Bicycle Hotel (or the native “sykkel hotell”) adjacent to the main square of the train station in Lillestrøm (near Oslo) will give bikes a cozy space to bunk up while riders are off in the city. The project, commissioned by Norwegian National Railways as a public space, offers just over 5,000 square feet of bike storage space that is protected from the elements. The aim is to make cycling even easier for people commuting around the city, and bicycle hotels such as this one are popping up near railway stations throughout the bike-friendly nation.

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Norway builds unique Bicycle Hotel to encourage more commuters to travel on two wheels

The new solar-powered Wheelys 5 bicycle cafe serves up coffee and much more

September 29, 2016 by  
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https://youtu.be/mJinfBpfoMI The original Wheely’s café was little more than a humble coffee-making box on a bike. But, the company’s dedication to sustainable products and efficient design led to 550 cafés popping up in over 65 countries. The latest Wheelys cafe branches out from selling strictly coffee to act as a full-service, high-tech mobile kitchen. Related: Tiny Human-Powered Wheely’s Cafe Serves Coffee Brewed by the Sun The Wheelys 5 is decked out in cutting-edge technology. A solar panel on top the cart provides clean renewable energy, and built-in LED lights illuminate the cafe at night. The kitchen offers a 3 burner gas stove, running water, a hand sink, and a built-in display, and the cafe can event be outfitted with Wi-Fi. Despite all that tech, Wheelys is still a small organic business based on down-to-earth sustainable values. It’s still your friendly neighborhood cafe, just with more stuff. + Wheely’s 5 Open Source Bike Cafe

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The new solar-powered Wheelys 5 bicycle cafe serves up coffee and much more

Budnitz unveils the lightest electric bike in the world

September 12, 2016 by  
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Electric bikes make morning commutes easier, more enjoyable, and less sweaty than regular old cycles. In fact, people double the distance they bike each day when using an e-bike. Tapping into the need for zero emission transportation, Budnitz Bicycles has launched the world’s lightest electric bike , which is made from an advanced titanium alloy. The Model E can reach a speed of 15 mph with electric assist for up to 100 miles. The bluetooth interface powers the motor and allows riders to switch between multiple modes, but there is always the option to pedal one’s way to work. A set of slope sensors provide extra assist on particularly steep hills, and an antitheft “total lockdown” feature is also available. Related: 6 cycling accessories every bike commuter needs The custom-made bikes are built in Vermont from a titanium alloy that is “as light as aluminum, [and] as strong as steel.” The only feature that may worry instead of wow is the price – the Model E starts at $3,950 USD with specialized frame coloring starting at an additional $500 and a multitude of other optional add-ons. For most, the bike may be a wish-list item, rather than a practical buy. + Budnitz Bicycles Via The Verge Images via Budnitz Bicycles

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Budnitz unveils the lightest electric bike in the world

Obama administration aims for 86 gigawatts of offshore wind by 2050

September 12, 2016 by  
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Could the Atlantic and Pacific coastlines of the United States one day look like the North Sea with thousands of wind turbines generating gigawatts of clean, renewable electricity? The US has a long way to go to catch up with Europe’s nearly 12 GW of installed offshore wind capacity. But if the Obama administration’s new offshore wind plan is fully implemented, by 2050 the US would blow Europe’s current capacity out of the water with 86 gigawatts of offshore wind — enough emissions-free electricity to power more than 23 million homes. The report states that there is a “technical potential” of an astounding 2,058 GW of offshore wind in US waters – enough to provide nearly double the total electric generation of the entire country. The National Offshore Wind Strategy – part of the Obama administration’s Climate Action Plan – builds on the momentum of the country’s first offshore wind farm , which was completed last month. The Block Island Wind Farm off the coast of Rhode Island will soon be generating 30 megawatts of electricity from five turbines – enough to power 17,000 homes. US Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz and Interior Secretary Sally Jewell visited the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center’s Wind Technology Testing Center in Boston on Friday to announce that the federal government will be increasing efforts to develop offshore wind as part of the administration’s commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions under the Paris climate agreement. Related: European wind energy is now cheaper than nuclear power “Today’s collaborative strategic plan is part of a long-term commitment to support innovation that enables widespread offshore wind deployment and shows how offshore wind will benefit our country with new jobs, less pollution, and a more diversified electricity mix,” Moniz said in a statement. According to the report, fully implementing the offshore wind plan would support 160,000 jobs, reduce power sector water consumption by 5 percent and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 1.8 percent. Generating 86 GW of offshore wind by 2050 would also make up 14 percent of the projected demand for new electricity generation in the coastal and Great Lakes states. Last year, the Interior department’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management awarded 11 commercial leases for offshore wind development off the Atlantic coast. There are also plans for the nation’s first freshwater offshore wind farm in Lake Erie near Cleveland, and offshore wind is currently being considered for California and Hawaii. Mitigating climate change and reducing air pollution aren’t the only benefits of offshore wind. According to Stanford University Professor Mark Jacobson, founder of The Solutions Project, a plan to power the world with 100 percent renewable energy, offshore wind farms can potentially weaken hurricane winds and reduce storm surge. + National Offshore Wind Strategy Via Grist Images via Ad Meskens and Wikimedia

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Obama administration aims for 86 gigawatts of offshore wind by 2050

World’s longest car-free trail stretching 15,000 miles to open next year in Canada

September 5, 2016 by  
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Canada started work on a huge cross-country network of trails for cyclists, hikers and other outdoor enthusiasts back in 1992, and the project is finally nearing completion. To date, over 20,000 kilometers or 12,906 miles of car-free trails have been connected, 26 percent of which are on water. According to The Great Trail website , 80 percent of Canada’s population lives within 30 minutes of what is said to be the largest recreational trail in the world. Which means Canucks have no excuse – save an angry moose or miserable weather – to waste away indoors. Apart from its impending completion sometime next year, a slew of headlines about bicycle ” superhighways ” in Europe has drawn new attention to the ambitious Great Trail project. Over two decades in the making, the extraordinary trail starts in Newfoundland, or “Kilometre Zero”, according to the website, and stretches west across the great white north to British Columbia. When it is completed, it will comprise 14,913 miles of mixed-use trails. While great emphasis has been placed in European cities on cycling as a form of green transportation , The Great Trail gives Canadians the opportunity to not only commute, but also enjoy a variety of other activities amid the country’s diverse landscapes and cityscapes. Walking or hiking, cycling, paddling, horseback riding, cross-country skiing and snowmobiling are top recommended pastimes. Albeit a boon for recreation, the Great Trail project has also boosted communities across the country. Related: New bike “greenway” stretching from Florida to Maine is 31% complete “Trail sections are owned, operated and maintained by local organizations, provincial authorities, national agencies and municipalities across Canada,” according to the website. The “Trans Canada Trail is represented by provincial and territorial organizations that is [sic] responsible for championing the cause of the Trail in their region. These provincial and territorial partners, together with local trail-building organizations, are an integral part of Trans Canada Trail and are the driving force behind its development.” Germany opened the first few miles of a 60-mile highway earlier this year, and the United States is planning its own bike greenway up the east coast, but neither compares with The Great Trail, a singular unifying project with benefits for all Canadian residents. + The Great Trail Via MTLBlog Images via Wikipedia and screenshot

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World’s longest car-free trail stretching 15,000 miles to open next year in Canada

The Elektron is the worlds most compact folding electric bike

August 15, 2016 by  
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Most electric bicycles on the market are heavy and difficult to carry around. But the Elektron from Tern and Bosch is a new kind of e-bike : light, compact, and able to fold up small enough to fit in a car trunk. The Elektron is capable of driving 31-62 miles on a single charge, making it perfect for most daily commutes. It runs on a 400Wh Bosch battery and can fold up in just ten seconds. The bike is engineered to resist extreme temperatures, so it’s usable year-round. Unfortunately, the bike isn’t for sale just yet, but the company plans to open for preorders in October through Kickstarter. They claim this approach will yield valuable public feedback before the product goes to market. + Tern Bicycles Via Acquire  

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The Elektron is the worlds most compact folding electric bike

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