‘Assemblies of randomly selected citizens mulling over thorny issues are a brilliant way for elected politicians to shift the responsibility for really unpopular policies onto someone else’

France’s citizens’ climate convention has come back to bite Macron 18 April 2020, The Spectator, Melanie McDonagh Those of us who are skeptical about the worth of citizens’ assemblies have been noting with interest the upshot of the French citizens’ convention for the climate which delivered its recommendations this week. The thing about these assemblies of randomly selected citizens mulling over …

40% of Baltimore households lack wired internet access: 73% of White households have it but only 50% of Black households and 46% of Hispanic households have the same. Just 33.8% of low-income residents have wired internet service compared to 83% of households with annual income over $75K

Chris Teale@chris_teale May 18, 2020, Smart Cities Dive Over 40% of Baltimore households (96,000) lacked wired access to internet in 2018 through cable, fiber or another service, according to a study released last week by the Abell Foundation. The study also found that one in three households (75,000) lack a desktop or laptop computer. The report analyzed internet access in 33 cities, including …

No fossil fuels are burned to run this jet engine. It needs only air and electricity.

CHRISTIAN COTRONEO May 6, 2020 Tweet1Save Aviation Most jet engines, including the one pictured, burn fossil fuels. (Photo: Steve Mann/Shutterstock) A prototype for a new jet engine promises to fly passengers halfway around the world — without burning fossil fuels. The engine, developed at the Institute of Technological Sciences at Wuhan University, would allow passengers to fly carbon-neutral skies. Researchers say …

George Lakey on strategy and organizing now

After groups have a conflict, the dominance pattern is upended and those previously on the margins speak up! It doesn’t matter what the conflict is about — it can be about the color of the drapes. It’s just that a conflict upsets the prevailing order and those who were playing it safe step up!” Excerpt from George Lakey, April 23, …

Why 30 Million Solar Rooftops Should Be In the Next Relief Bill: More than 1 in 3 home or business rooftops in America is suitable for solar. With $450 billion in rooftop solar, the federal government could slash energy bills for Americans, cut air pollution, create over 3.7 million jobs, and get paid back!

By JOHN FARRELL  10 APR 2020  As the federal government looks to a second (or even third) stimulus bill, Congress should consider a huge opportunity to pay Americans that pays back: solar rooftops. Somewhat more than one in three home or business rooftops in America is suitable for solar: sunny with sufficient space to host a few panels. By investing $450 …

Why coal phaseout is a ‘no-regret’ plan for tackling climate change

“We show that phasing out coal yields substantial environmental and public-health benefits. The majority comes from reduced air pollution-related mortality, with about 1.5 million avoided premature deaths in 2050. This is equivalent to around 40 million “Disability Adjusted Life Years” (DALY), which is a measure of overall disease burden, expressed as the number of years lost due to ill health.” …

By year 3 of Iraq war, over 2.6 million people wounded, 655K people killed. Pre-war sanctions had already killed 500K children under age 5

When the U.S. invasion of Iraq was in only its third year, a Johns Hopkins University study concluded that 655,000 people had already been killed in that war. Prior to that, the United Nations estimated that pre-war sanctions enforced on Iraq at the behest of the U.S. had killed over 500,000 children under the age of five. Based on the Johns Hopkins estimate of Iraqis …

A Wealth Tax Is the Logical Way to Support Coronavirus Relief

The wealthiest 5 percent of American families now hold $57 trillion, or two-thirds of all household wealth in the country (up from about half in 1960). An exemption for the first $2.5 million of household wealth would exclude the bottom 95 percent from paying any tax at all and leave the top 5 percent with total taxable wealth of roughly …

Electric Air Taxi Service Set To Launch In California By 2021: eFlyer2 costs just $23 per hour of flight to operate compared, to $110 per hour for a Cessna 172

April 24th, 2020 by Jo Borrás, Clean Technica Quantum Air announced plans to launch what it’s calling a world’s first — an air taxi service using a fleet of 26 all-electric flying taxis to shuttle passengers between major points in the greater Los Angeles area. Quantum XYZ is claiming that these air taxi trips will replace hours-long car rides in LA’s notoriously …