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Germany Breaks Its Renewables Generation Record. China Suspends Majority Of New Coal Power Permits. The moves as China’s coal consumption has fallen for the third year running.

China Suspends Majority Of New Coal Power Permits

A man walks past a coal-powered steel plant in Tianjin, China. (AP/Andy Wong) The Chinese government has ordered the vast majority of its provinces to stop permitting new coal power projects. According to a statement from the National Energy Administration (NEA), 28 of China’s 31 mainland provinces do not currently have the right financial or environmental conditions to greenlight new coal capacity. This represents an update to the government’s ‘traffic light’ system, designed to tackle the country’s coal overcapacity crisis — that we reported on last year. 24 provinces were issued red lights, 4 earned the orange light (which this year is much stronger) while only two were given the green light.

This follows Beijing’s decision earlier this year to cancel more than 100 coal power projects — including many that were already under construction. Print This Story. Germany Allows Self-Driving Cars on its Roads, with a Driver. Add Germany to the list of places where businesses can test their self-driving cars on the open road -- as long as they have a driver sitting at the wheel ready to take control at any time.

Germany Allows Self-Driving Cars on its Roads, with a Driver

That's one of the restrictions imposed by a new law voted by the German Federal Council (Bundesrat) on Friday. The move will be a welcome one for Germany's automotive industry, allowing manufacturers such as Audi to test self-driving vehicles in their home country, rather than taking them all the way to California.Â. EU Parliament Calls for Robot Law; Rejects Robot Tax. AeroFarms Partners with 100 Resilient Cities.

May 9, 2017 AeroFarms Partners with 100 Resilient Cities, Rockefeller Foundation to Increase Food Security and Fight Climate Change AeroFarms is proud to announce a partnership with the Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities initiative. 100 Resilient Cities – Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation (100RC) helps cities around the world become more resilient to social, economic, and physical challenges that are a growing part of the 21st century. 100RC provides this assistance through: funding for a Chief Resilience Officer in each city who will lead the resilience efforts; resources for drafting a Resilience Strategy; access to private sector, public sector, academic, and NGO resilience tools; and membership in a global network of peer cities to share best practices and challenges.

AeroFarms Partners with 100 Resilient Cities

Norway Becomes First Country to Commit to Zero Deforestation. China Halts Over 100 Coal Power Projects.

2016

Participation Rates Highlight UK's Democratic Crisis. There’s a macabre and notionally scientific anecdote which you may perhaps have heard before: If you take a frog and put it in a pan of boiling water it will immediately leap straight out again.

Participation Rates Highlight UK's Democratic Crisis

However, if you take a frog and place it in a pan of cold water which you then very gradually heat, the frog will placidly remain there until it boils alive. Thankfully, Wikipedia tells me that not only is the story biologically unsound but that scientists have had the good grace not to do any experiments of this type since the 19th century. The metaphor which the anecdote provides can also be dubious: it’s frequently pulled out by rightwing conspiracists in the US when they try to claim that their nation is moving stealthily but inexorably toward socialism. But it does have some merit as an illustration of the concept of creeping normality, the idea that the world can change around us profoundly, but do it so gradually that we don’t notice.

It can also be true of the health of our democracy. France Mandates Green Roofs for New Builds. A new law recently passed in France mandates that all new buildings that are built in commercial zones in France must be partially covered in either plants or solar panels.

France Mandates Green Roofs for New Builds

Green roofs, as they are called, have an isolating effect which helps to reduce the amount of energy needed to heat a building during the winter or cool it in the summer. They are capable of retaining rainwater and reducing problems with runoff, and also offer birds a place to call home in the urban jungle. French environmental activists originally wanted to pass a law that would make the green roofs cover the entire surface of all new roofs. However, partially covered roofs make for a great start, and are still a huge step in the right direction.

Some say the law that was passed is actually better, as it gives the business owners a chance to install solar panels to help provide the buildings with renewable energy, thereby leaving even less of a footprint. See also: What Makes a Building Green’ ? Benefits of Green Roofs.