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Video - Mobile Phones Without Towers Coming Soon

The Sydney Morning Herald - September 1, 2011

A mobile phone communications system that doesn't need towers is being developed at Adelaide's Flinders University.

The Serval Project was inspired by the 2010 Haiti earthquake in which the phone network crashed as infrastructure went down.

Creator Paul Gardner-Stephen said the earthquake showed the lack of resilience in a communications system that relied on infrastructure.

"If the towers are knocked out, mobile phone handsets become useless lumps of plastic in our hands," he said.

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The Economics of Rapidly Emerging Cities

As the human populations of our small planet exceeds 7 billion on its way potentially to 9 million or 10 billion by the mid-21st Century, migrations of millions are becoming common place -- some out of desperation, others out of seeking opportunity and a better life.  According to a large percentage of climatologists and other scientists that are studying global change, the social ecologies of many large cities will become non-viable for their human populations and many other species due to climate change, the drying up of water supplies, the lose of food sources, natural disasters, wars, and other factors.  In other cases, new cities of opportunity or attractive culture will draws those seeking a better life and way of being.  

Tens of millions, and perhaps hundreds of millions will be forced to leave their homes in search of more viable communities.  Millions more will create new communities with intentionality, exploring new economic, social, and political models that improve health, human security, resilience and sustainability for the new citizens.  In some cases, simple shared principles will shape new, fast growing economies, and, in other cases, rules and conditions will be imposed on inhabitants of new communities and cities.

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When Capitalism Converges With Resilience

It is hard to argue against that fact that the U.S. and even "Communist" China, for that matter, have great influence in global markets and on health and human security -- for their own people as well as human populations world-wide. The power of capital within global, regional, national, and local markets has been transforming the world since the growth of the industrial revolution, which has only accelerated since the broad introduction of global communication and computing in the 20th century. That said, there has been growing criticism of the destructive nature of market fundamentalism and laissez faire economics in the face of a growing awareness of ecosystem carrying capacities, and the problems inherent in growth economies in decline.  So what happens when capitalists become aware of the destructive nature of growth economies, where populations are exceeding the carrying capacities of ecosystems and mass consumption economies begin to collapse?

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NRC Task Force Review of Insights from Fukushima

                                              

United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - July 12, 2011

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has released "Recommendations for Enhancing Reactor Safety in the 21st Century: The Near-Term Task Force Review of Insights from the Fukushima Dai-ichi Accident." The Near-Term Task Force was established in response to Commission direction to conduct a systematic and methodical review of NRC processes and regulations to determine whether the agency should make additional improvements to its regulatory system and to make recommendations to the Commission for its policy direction, in light of the accident at the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant.

Recommendations for Enhancing Reactor Safety in the 21st Century: The Near-Term Task Force Review of Insights from the Fukushima Dai-ichi Accident (96 page .PDF report)

http://pbadupws.nrc.gov/docs/ML1118/ML111861807.pdf

http://www.nrc.gov/japan/japan-info.html

Deepwater Trouble on the Horizon: Oil Discovered Floating Near Source of Gulf of Mexico Spill (Video & Photos)

al.com - August 24, 2011

       

Oil bubbles to the surface of the Gulf of Mexico within one mile northeast of BP's Macondo well on August 23, 2011. (Press-Register/Jeff Dute)

MOBILE, Alabama -- Oil is once again fouling the Gulf of Mexico around the Deepwater Horizon well, which was capped a little over a year ago.

Tuesday afternoon, hundreds of small, circular patches of oily sheen dotted the surface within a mile of the wellhead. With just a bare sheen present over about a quarter-mile, the scene was a far cry from the massive slick that covered the Gulf last summer.

Floating in a boat near the well site, Press-Register reporters watched blobs of oil rise to the surface and bloom into iridescent yellow patches. Those patches quickly expanded into rainbow sheens 4 to 5 feet across.

Each expanding bloom released a pronounced and pungent petroleum smell. Most of the oil was located in a patch about 50 yards wide and a quarter of a mile long.

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Video - The Israëli Awakening?!

submitted by Theresa Bernardo

YouTube - uploaded by jeaunkes - August 3, 2011

An Israeli girl starts a peaceful protest of the high cost of living, with Facebook and a tent.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=Yj-Uo5mpAD0

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Facebook Becomes Divisive in Bahrain

Voice of America - August 17, 2011

       

A Bahrain woman looks at pictures of victims of the February 14 uprising, displayed at an exhibition during a gathering held by the Al Fateh Youth Union in Isa Town, south of Manama, Bahrain, July 28, 2011

It has been six months since anti-government protests inspired by the successful uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt first erupted in Bahrain. And as in Egypt, many Bahrainis used social media Internet sites such as Facebook to help organize the protests. The Bahraini government is now using Facebook, too - apparently to track down and arrest the protesters.

It is questionable whether the Arab Spring ever would have amounted to much without social media on the Internet. In most cases, as more and more frustrated youths turned to their computers to express their discontent, an increasing number of people left their homes to publicly demand change.

The term “Facebook Revolution” was coined after the successful ouster of President Hosni Mubarak in Egypt. And in Bahrain, the social networking site also played a role in encouraging people to participate in the nation’s “Day of Rage” protests on February 14, and in the pro-democracy demonstrations that followed.

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Apple Pips Exxon as World's Biggest Company

 guardian.co.uk - August 9, 2011

      

Apple chief Steve Jobs unveils the second generation iPad. Sales of the tablet last quarter were three times the sales in its first three months. Photograph: Kimihiro Hoshino/AFP/Getty Images

Stock market turmoil in Wall Street has helped Apple pip oil group Exxon to become the world's most valuable company.

The tech company has been closing in on Exxon for some time and was "just" $50bn (£30bn) away from taking the lead when it reported yet another quarter of record-breaking earnings on 19 July.

As the US stock markets bounced back from last week's crash the tech firm overtook Exxon with a market value of $337bn compared to ExxonMobil's $334bn. Exxon could easily slip back into the lead if the recent fears for the global economy subside but the gap is so close that the two look certain to be battling it out for some time.

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Solar Brings Clean Water to Madagascar

by Duncan Alfreds - news24.com - August 16, 2011

                          

Tenesol Madagascar provides thermal and photovoltaic solutions.

http://www.tenesol.com/-Tenesol-Madagascar,226-.html

Cape Town - Rural communities in Madagascar are receiving access to safe drinking water and electricity with a solar power project.

"Solar energy is a life-giving technology that can improve the welfare and education of a country's population," said Benoit Rolland, managing director of Tenesol.

Typical of a poor country, the majority of Madagascar's population do not have access to clean drinking water and solar water pumps are an efficient way to ensure that communities get access to water.

Solar pumps have also been installed in Zambia where it has allowed farmers to irrigate land that would otherwise not be able to produce crops.

Cost-effective

Local communities in Madagascar are trained to maintain the solar pumps to ensure that they work optimally.

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Conference Invitation: The Equation of Sustainability, Climate Change and Economics

From: Intl Conference <***@***.***>

                                                      

Subject: The Equation of Sustainability and Economics

 

Dear colleagues 

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