Trump administration wants to end uranium mining ban near the Grand Canyon

November 3, 2017 by  
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The Grand Canyon is one of America’s most beloved national parks , attracting over four million visitors annually — but President Donald Trump’s administration doesn’t seem to care about that. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently proposed lifting a ban on new uranium mining near the national park, as part of a broader effort, according to Reuters, to do away with regulations hindering development after a March executive order from the president. The Forest Service , which is under the USDA and manages the land that could be re-opened to uranium mining , prepared a report in response to Trump’s Executive Order 13783 titled “Promoting Energy Independence and Economic Growth.” They proposed lifting the mining ban, put in place in 2012 to protect the watershed around the Grand Canyon. Related: Big Oil celebrates Trump’s goal to open up drilling in national parks Uranium mining pollutes water, and impacts animals and plants as it removes water sources, according to Earthjustice . The Center for Biological Diversity reports past uranium mining in the Grand Canyon area “has polluted soils, washes, aquifers, and drinking water.” They said that according to nonpartisan polls, 80 percent of Americans and 80 percent of Arizona voters back permanent protection in the Grand Canyon region from new uranium mining. According to Reuters, global demand and prices for uranium are weak. The new report even says uranium mining doesn’t generate revenue for America, according to the Center for Biological Diversity. Havasupai Tribal Chairman Don Watahomigie said in a statement, “This is a dangerous industry that is motivated by profit and greed with a long history of significantly damaging lands and waters. They are now seeking new mines when this industry has yet to clean up the hundreds of existing mines all over the landscape that continue to damage our home. We should learn from the past, not ignore it.” Via Reuters , the Associated Press , Earthjustice , and the Center for Biological Diversity Images via Depositphotos and Wikimedia Commons

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BIGs looping station design in Paris turns bridge into public space

March 24, 2017 by  
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Danish firm Bjarke Ingels Group and French studio Silvio D’ascia Architecture unveiled new renderings of their competition-winning designs for a loop-shaped metro station in Paris. Created as part of Société du Grand París’ Grand Paris Express project, the Pont de Bondy station is one of 68 new stations planned for the redevelopment that will expand the existing metro system by 200 kilometers. The sculptural station will include a bridge and tunnel wrapped around a giant atrium next to the riverbank.

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BIGs looping station design in Paris turns bridge into public space

Uber rolls out autonomous cars in Arizona

February 22, 2017 by  
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Just shy of two months after Uber’s autonomous cars were banned in California, the company is rolling out its second round of experimental autonomous vehicles on the roadways of Arizona. Uber’s most-recent experiment is happening on the streets of Tempe Arizona, where locals have the option to ride in one of the company’s self-driving Volvo XC90s – along with two Uber engineers in the front seats for safety purposes. Uber’s operation on the streets of San Francisco lasted only a week due to a dispute over regulations, but the company could benefit from less restrictive regulations in the Grand Canyon State. Uber and California went their separate ways because the state’s DMV threatened legal action for the improper licensing of test vehicles. When Uber refused to apply for the necessary permits, the state just up and revoked their license. It didn’t take the company long to hit the road in Arizona, where Governor Doug Ducey put out a big welcome mat for them in the form of an executive order. Signed in August, 2015, the order directed several government agencies to “undertake any necessary steps to support the testing and operation of self-driving vehicles on public roads in the state. According to The Verge , he also “empowered” universities to launch pilot programs for self-driving cars. Related: Uber launches self-driving cars in Pittsburgh After nearly a year of rumors that the company was planning to experiment with autonomous cars, Uber confirmed suspicions when it announced and began testing the vehicles on the streets of Pittsburgh in September 2016. Pricing for the Arizona pilot project remains the same as UberX service in other cities, and the Volvos can carry up to three passengers along with the “safety drivers.” Riders will have the option to cancel their request if they feel nervous when a self-driving car shows up, allowing them to opt for a human-piloted vehicle instead. Via The Verge and Engadget Images via Uber, Dilu , Wikimedia Commons and Foo Conner , Flickr Creative Commons

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Sustainability as a "Grand Strategy" for the nation

December 18, 2016 by  
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Mark “Puck” Mykleby, a former Marine and the Co-Director at the Strategic innovation Lab, spoke at VERGE Hawaii 2016 about and his recent book The New Grand Strategy: Restoring America’s Prosperity,

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Sustainability as a "Grand Strategy" for the nation

BIG and Silvio d’Ascia’s loopy design wins Paris metro station competition

November 10, 2016 by  
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Danish firm Bjarke Ingels Group together with French studio Silvio d’Ascia Architecture won the design competition for a unique project in Paris, which will contribute a looping metro station to the expansion of the existing transportation system . BIG and Silvio d’Ascia designed the Pont de Bondy station as part of the Grand Paris Express, a stretch which will add 124 miles to the Paris metro system. The station looks like a giant P-shaped loop-de-loop with a pedestrian overpass spanning across a pool of water, running parallel to a vehicular bridge. The Pont de Bondy station is planned for Paris’ Line 15, a suburban route that circles the city’s periphery. BIG and Silvio d’Ascia Architecture designed the station in deep terracotta, with a central loop housing a covered concourse. Two wings extend outward from the concourse, forming a right angle, with one stretching out under a flyover and the other holding a pedestrian walkway over a pool of water. Pont de Bondy will be among nine “emblematic stations” on the expanded metro network that elevates public transportation to an art with elaborate modern architecture and sculptural designs. Related: Kengo Kuma wins design competition for new Paris metro station Elsewhere in the Paris metro expansion, 10 more new stations are planned and city leaders have so far named six other architects to design those stations; all of that is just for Line 15. In total, there are now 37 teams of architects working on 68 new stations for the Grand Paris Express, marking an epic investment in city infrastructure. The entire Grand Paris Express project, including all new stations and lines, are expected to be up and running by 2030. Via Dezeen Images via BIG and Wikipedia

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BIG and Silvio d’Ascia’s loopy design wins Paris metro station competition

Striking louvered facade controls solar gain and updates an aging retail space

June 27, 2016 by  
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The building consists of two main volumes with a footprint of 70 by 52 meters. The building has three stories, with additional available space on the lot for future use.  According to the architects, “The redesigned facade provides a good, economical and functional shading device to improve heat gain in an existing facade.” Related: Louvered Wallaby House Maxmimizes Space and Energy Efficiency on Australia’s Sunshine Coast The project also incorporates sustainable design strategies , with eco materials that were sourced locally where possible. These sustainable materials, combined with the prefabrication method of construction – which allowed construction to take place in a quick and efficient way – make the project not only an environmentally-friendly one, but one that had minimal impact on the store’s business. + Leaf Architects Studio

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Striking louvered facade controls solar gain and updates an aging retail space

Plants grown in Mars-like soil are officially declared edible

June 27, 2016 by  
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Back in March, scientists from the Netherlands’ Wageningen University successfully grew ten different crops in Mars-like soil provided by NASA . But there was a catch: they couldn’t eat the food. They worried it contained heavy metals like cadmium and lead, which were present in the Mars soil stimulant. Well, good news: further research determined at least four of the crops do not contain dangerous heavy metal levels and are therefore edible, getting us one step closer to life on the Red Planet. The Wageningen team, led by ecologist Wieger Wamelink, tested radishes, tomatoes, rye, and peas. They tested the crops for cadmium, lead, aluminium, nickel, copper, chrome, iron, arsenic, manganese, and zinc. None of those compounds appeared in dangerous levels, and Wamelink said the results are “very promising.” Some of the heavy metal concentrations detected in the food were even less than those found in plants cultivated in regular potting soil . The plants were also tested for vitamins, alkaloids, and flavonoids. Related: Scientists are growing ten different kinds of crops in Mars-like soil While we don’t yet know whether NASA or Mars One will reach the red planet first, both entities support the research. NASA provided the soil stiumlant, mainly from a Hawaii volcano. Mars One co-founder and CEO Bas Lansdorp said in a press release, “Growing food locally is especially important to our mission of permanent settlement, as we have to ensure sustainable food production on Mars. The results of Dr. Wamelink and his team at Wageningen University & Research are significant progress towards that goal.” A crowdfunding campaign is still going, and that money will allow Wamelink’s team to test the other six crops, including potatoes. You can donate here until the end of August. If all the vegetables grown contain heavy metal amounts lower than those stipulated by the FDA and the Dutch Food Agency, Wamelink’s team will host a “Martian dinner” at the Wageningen greenhouse. + Can we safely eat plants grown on Mars? Images via Bryan Versteeg/Mars One and Food for mars and moon Facebook

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Exclusive video: The Barr Brothers perform at the Pickathon Music Festival

July 31, 2015 by  
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Click here to view the embedded video. Somewhere between a dusty Americana and West African groove lies the soulful grit and instrumentally diverse folk-rock sound evoked from The Barr Brothers. The Montreal-based quartet features mesmerizing slide guitar, evocative vocals, and intense drumming, interwoven with soft, subtle harp drifts. Their rich, avant-garde sound is at its finest amongst the trees or atop a mountain — they’ve been known to play upon the rim of the Grand Canyon, welcoming tourists to film them. This year, they are sharing their unique sound at the 2015 Pickathon Music Festival , happening this weekend in Happy Valley, Oregon. Pickathon is the world’s most sustainable large-scale outdoor concert , and we can’t get enough of the sound. We’ll be releasing a series of exclusive live music videos with Pickathon throughout the fall, so be sure to stay tuned for more new tracks coming from the wilderness of Happy Valley. + Pickathon Music Festival

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Exclusive video: The Barr Brothers perform at the Pickathon Music Festival

Patrick Nadeau’s Green-Roofed Wave Home Changes Appearance with the Seasons in France

July 31, 2015 by  
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Grand Canyon Uranium Mine as Big as a Walmart Parking Lot to Proceed Despite Obama Ban

May 1, 2013 by  
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Photo via Shutterstock A Canadian Company has received federal approval to proceed with a uranium mine despite a ban put in place by President Obama last year. Energy Fuels Resources has skirted the ban by producing a 1986 environmental report conducted by the United States Forest Service, The Guardian reports, but several conservation groups and the Havasupai tribe have dismissed the report as being outdated. The old Canyon mine will clearcut land as large as a Walmart parking lot just six miles from the South Rim entrance to the canyon, which is up to 70 million years old. Read the rest of Grand Canyon Uranium Mine as Big as a Walmart Parking Lot to Proceed Despite Obama Ban Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Energy Fuels Resources , Environment , environmental destruction , grand canyon , Grand Canyon Trust , Havasupai , Nature , News , Red Wall Aquifer , seven natural wonders of the world , South Rim of Grand Canyon , Travel , uranium , us forest service        

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