22nd Century Leadership - David Crane

We’ve been producing podcasts now for a while, focusing most recently on a weekly 10 in 2 report – 10 things that interest us this week, provided to you in 2 minutes, or in as short a time as we can. Now we’re unveiling a new periodic podcast we’re calling Leadership in the 22nd Century.

Our current social and economic systems were designed in and for a different time. Namely the 19th and 20th centuries. A time when there was a lot less people changing life on earth a lot slower and less systematically. Today, each day we add approximately 200,000 new humans to the 7+ billion people occupying our beautiful blue orb floating through space. Add to this the addition of tech innovations associated with machine learning, DNA manipulation, and flash stock trading, and we are living in the midst of a volatile cocktail that has manifest in unusual politics and a broad sense of dissatisfaction.

For the last 15 years we’ve worked with CEOs, corporations, non-profits, foundations, and even a city, on taking action to build long-term resilience and sustainability in light of these trends. Along the way, I’ve met a lot of interesting people engaged in what I’ve come to call the act of History Making. These are leaders who are actively transforming the way that human beings ‘see the world.’ Known examples are people like Steve Jobs, Albert Einstein and Desmond Tutu. In our case, we are going to focus this podcast on a subset of these History Makers. Namely, leaders who are actively working to help people appreciate the beauty, utility and fundamental necessity of a healthy environment to a thriving human economy and existence.

These 22nd century leaders are applying the best of human leadership capabilities to successfully helping their fellow humans through the what is sure to be a very turbulent transition from an economics built for 19th century realities to a society and economics built for 22nd century realities.

We began this podcast a few weeks back with an interview with pioneer Biodynamic Farmer, Paul Dolan, and today we’re shifting towards the energy sector with an interview with my friend David Crane…

David currently is the senior operating executive at Pegasus Capital Advisors, a New York City-based private equity firm focused on investment in sustainability and wellness. As part of his responsibilities at Pegasus, David is chairman of Impala Holdings, a renewables development company focused on sub-Sahara Africa, and GVL, a biological lighting joint venture. David is also focused, on behalf of Pegasus, on new investment in clean energy technology, including distributed generation, energy storage, energy efficiency and EV infrastructure.  

Prior to Pegasus, David Crane was CEO of NRG, which he led out of Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2003. He transformed NRG over his 12-year tenure to be a Fortune 200 company, engaged not only in conventional power generation and competitive retail electricity services but also green retail, large scale renewables, home solar, EV charging and portable solar. David pioneered the yieldco asset class with the IPO of NRG Yield in July 2013.

David was awarded the Corporate Environmental Leadership award by GlobalGreen in 2014 and the Equinox Solar Champion Award and more recently The C.K. Prahalad Award for Global Sustainability Business Leadership in 2015. He is also editor at large for greenbiz.com and leads the B Team's corporate "net zero" initiative.


 

For further reading on David Crane, start with this interview with GreenTech Media



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10 in 2 - Week of August 7th - a range of visual and audio concepts

  • This is our 10 in 2 report for the week of August 7th

  • 10 news stories from the week that think are important, interesting, or infuriating

 

...so here we go:


 

  1. U.S. consumer credit-card debt just passed an ominous milestone, with outstanding card loans reaching $1.02 trillion in June, beating a record set just before the global financial system almost collapsed in 2008. (Bloomberg)

  2. The Orlando City Commission unanimously approved a resolution Tuesday establishing a goal to move Orlando to 100 percent clean and renewable energy by 2050. Orlando is now the largest city in Florida to make such a commitment and joins a growing movement of more than three dozen cities nationwide that have committed to a 100 percent clean energy future. (Eco Watch)

  3. The environmental impact of our diet on the planet is well known, but new research shows that the impact of our pets is substantial. The study found that the roughly 163 million pet cats and dogs in the United States eat about a quarter of the meat produced in the country. (Smithsonian)

  4. Scientists announced the birth of 37 pigs gene-edited to be better for human transplant. The black-and-white piglets are now several months old, and they belong to a breed of miniature pigs that will grow no bigger than 150 pounds—with organs just the right size for transplant into adult humans. (The Atlantic)

  5. The most ambitious project to reintroduce jaguars into habitat where they once roamed freely has reached a new milestone with the addition of Tania, the fourth jaguar in the program. The project, part of Conservation Land Trust Argentina, is to breed formerly captive jaguars and then release their offspring into the vast 3.2 million acre Ibera National Park wetlands. Supported by Tompkins Conservation and the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, this program is the first of its kind in South America. (CLTA)

  6. HP is spearheading a Virtual Reality project that is crowdsourcing an effort to conceptualize and simulate life on Mars. As you contribute concepts and models, they will draw upon your feedback, ideas and skills to create a Virtual Reality experience that offers an exploration of our combined imagination. Sign up for the early stages at launchforth.io or by following the link on the accompanying blog post for this episode. (HP)

  7. New fossil discoveries show that prehistoric “squirrels” glided through forests at least 160 million years ago, long before scientists had thought. Flowering trees did not yet exist, so there was no fruit to eat. Instead, the earliest mammal gliders may have leapt from tree to tree to feed on the cones of conifer trees or the soft parts of giant ferns. (NYT)

  8. Google’s DeepMind has developed an AI that teaches itself to recognise a range of visual and audio concepts just by watching tiny snippets of video. This AI can grasp the concept of lawn mowing or tickling, for example, but it hasn’t been taught the words to describe what it’s hearing or seeing. This project takes us closer to the goal of creating AI that can teach itself by watching and listening to the world around it. (New Scientist)

  9. EDF outlines 7 ways global warming is affecting daily life. You’ve heard about the long-term, large-scale changes predicted by scientists. But climate change is already pervading our daily lives. The list includes ways that crucial beer ingredients like water, barley, and hops are threatened and how many homeowners whose houses were destroyed by natural disaster are having a hard time getting insurance again. (EDF)

  10. Starbucks has saturated the American market so much that it’s now losing sales competing with itself. On average, for every Starbucks location in the US, there are now about four others within a one-mile radius to compete against. As a result, a Montreal-based investment bank this week downgraded its view of Starbucks’ stock. (Quartz)

 



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10 in 2 - Week of July 31st - Happy Earth Overshoot Day

  • This is our 10 in 2 report for the week of July 31st

  • 10 news stories from the week that think are important, interesting, or infuriating

 

...so here we go:


 

  1. Happy Earth Overshoot Day. According to analysis conducted by the Global Footprint Network and the World Wildlife Foundation, on August 2 we human beings officially used up our annual sustainable allowance of resources such as water, clean air, and soil for 2017. According to the model, if natural resources are life’s capital base, we are now eating into the principle with five months to go in the year. (Independent)

  2. Bacteria that eat methane have been discovered in an Antarctic lake that has been isolated from the atmosphere for thousands of years. The bacteria's presence could significantly reduce the potential risk of warming posed by reservoirs of gas locked up in the ice. (Newsweek)

  3. Games are emerging as an effective tool for fighting fake news by helping users learn how to tell the difference between misleading headlines and factual claims. Digital creative agencies, journalists, developers, and academics are teaming up to create games that create a seemingly unnatural combination of Tinder, Politifact, and Pokemon Go. The games are part of a larger effort spearheaded by the Knight Foundation to combat fake news. (Nieman Lab)

  4. According the McKinsey Global Institute, China is far and away the largest ecommerce market and is a leader in virtual reality, autonomous vehicle, robots, 3-d printing, drone and artificial intelligence venture capital funding (McKinsey Global Institute)

  5. In one of the most surprising examples of rapid genetic adaptation to climate change to date, scientists have been studying a common lizard living on the Texas-Mexico border, which, in just the span of a few months, underwent a dramatic genetic transformation in response to cold weather. (Science Magazine)

  6. Peak oil demand can’t be far away when the CEO of one of the world’s largest oil companies says his next car will be an electric vehicle. But, that’s exactly what happened yesterday when Shell’s CEO Ben van Beurden predicted oil demand may peak by 2030. (Think Progress)

  7. This week the Atlantic noted that if everyone ate beans instead of beef, the U.S. could almost meet greenhouse-gas emission goals, even if nothing about our energy infrastructure or transportation system changed—and even if people kept eating chicken and pork and eggs and cheese. (The Atlantic)

  8. India’s government wants to ban self-driving cars to save jobs - “We won’t allow driverless cars in India,” said India’s minister of transport, Nitin Gadkari. “I am very clear on this. We won’t allow any technology that takes away jobs." (Singularity Archive)

  9. The New York Times makes the claim this week that Cryptocurrencies are this generation's pensions. After watching markets disintegrate in 2008, millennials are betting heavily on digital coins. Obviously not everyone is bullish, but it is clear that the path to financial stability is no longer limited to traditional investment. (NYT)

  10. Kevin Kelly, the futurist, author, founder of Wired Magazine has alerted us to the existence of website called HVPER.COM, which is the internet distilled into a single page. He recommends that we all forgo social media, TV, and Newspapers, and visit the site once a day, the irony being he posted this recommendation to Facebook, which is where we saw it.



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10 in 2 - Week of July 24th - Binary in a coal mine

  • This is our 10 in 2 report for the week of July 24th

  • 10 news stories from the week that think are important, interesting, or infuriating, and decidedly not about Trump.

 

  1. Bacilli string. Blowing out birthday candles increases cake bacteria by 1,400 percent. But if you are attending a birthday party this weekend, don’t stress. If birthday cakes significantly contributed to the spread of deadly diseases, it’d be obvious by now given the ubiquity of the practice. (The Atlantic)

  2. Runoff selection. Heavier rainfall will increase water pollution in the future. Researchers anticipate harmful nitrogen outputs to increase as a result of precipitation changes. This is especially true globally, where nitrogen application is higher than in the US. (National Geographic)

  3. Yes yes no I will not give you my credit card number. Popular podcast “Reply All” devoted this week's episode to a months long process of discovering the people behind a tech support scam. It’s an amazing piece of internet radio, which involves hundreds of phone calls to a Delhi based company, and eventually, a trip to India to meet one of the scammers. (Reply All)

  4. Two scoops of Ethics. Researchers have demonstrated they can efficiently improve the DNA of human embryos. Using CRISPR, the scientists are looking to cure a range of diseases, from HIV to muscular dystrophy. After successfully completing the experiment the embryos were destroyed, with no intention to implant them. (MIT Technology Review)

  5. Binary in a coal mine. How We Get to Next, is starting a new multimedia project called “Human Machine” with a look into how new, ubiquitous technologies which change human behavior are demonized by those who dislike them. They are going to show how things are, of course, a little more complicated than good and evil. Subscribe to the newsletter at howwegettonext.com

  6. Gross-erie store. You can experience a staffless, cashless, AI powered convenience store in Beijing. A video on YouTube shows a journalist entering the store, allowed inside only after facial recognition scanning, and a screen inside greets her by name, giving us an interesting glance into the inevitable future. (YouTube)

  7. To our new best friends. While we are on the subject of AI, Carnegie Mellon University's head of machine learning, Manuela Veloso, talks in new video about the challenge AI robots present for humanity, why humanity and AI will be inseparable, and what Siri and Alexa might look like in 2021. (YouTube)

  8. Flight club. NASA Is uploading decades of archival footage to YouTube. Spanning decades, the footage is no-fluff documentation of some of the most important flight tests and aircraft developments in NASA and Air Force history. Check it out, it’s really fun to browse through. (YouTube)

  9. Total eclipse of the heart. In the 1970s, a small group of astronomers used the first prototype of the Concorde to pursue a total eclipse across the Sahara at twice the speed of sound. If seen from the ground it would have lasted 7 minutes, but their careful planning allowed them to witness the eclipse for 74. They succeeded in their goal, and was a lot of fun, but the research led to no new clarity regarding our understanding of solar events. (Motherboard)

  10. Shoot more, read less. There is a popular article on Medium this week that starts out as what I thought was a whiny and regretful self help think piece like we have all have read several times. However, it gets to a point that we think is important: The author outlines how he started replacing his consumption activities with creation: Writing over reading. Shooting video over browsing YouTube. Meeting people rather than spending time on Facebook. Sage advice...so you probably should stop listening to this, and go make your own thing. We’re conveniently okay with that, because this is the end of this week’s episode. (The Mission)



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10 in 2 - Week of July 17th - Artificial intelligence is a monster that is happening

  • This is our 10 in 2 report for the week of July 17th

  • 10 news stories from the week that think are important, interesting, or infuriating

 

...so here we go:


 

  1. Life in plastic, it's fantastic. Humans have produced 18.2 trillion pounds of plastics since large-scale production began in the early 1950s and we've put most of it in the trash. That weight is equivalent to 1 billion elephants or 25,000 Empire State Buildings. (USA Today)  

  2. Crispr Kreme. Researchers are considering ways to use synthetic biology to eradicate invasive species or strengthen endangered coral. But... environmentalists are worried about the ethical questions and unwanted consequences of this new gene-altering technology. (Yale Environment 360)

  3. Don’t forget to bring a towel. You can now visit the International Space Station in Google Street view. There are little annotations that help explain daily life on the ISS. This is the first Street View of anything beyond earth, and is another cool project completed as a result of a Google’s famous 20% project, where employees are encouraged to spend 20% of their time on a passion project. (The Verge

  4. Live Tree or die. A new study offered a simple solution about how to preserve the world's dwindling forests: pay landowners in poor countries not to cut down the trees. Deforestation dropped by more than half in Ugandan villages where landowners were paid about $28 per hectare each year if they preserved their trees (The Atlantic)

  5. Moth-er bear. Bears in yellowstone eat 40,000 moths a day in August. The bears climb high above timberline in Yellowstone National Park to feed on moths that come from farmland many miles away. That translates to 20,000 calories of just moths, every day. (Yellowstone Park)

  6. Farms race. As California’s labor shortage grows, farmers are moving quickly to replace workers with robots. Much in same way industry has had to reinvent the factory, big ag is rethinking the field’s basic infrastructure. Driscoll’s is so secretive about its robotic strawberry picker it won’t let photographers within telephoto range of it, but that is probably just because it drove itself into a lake. (LA Times)

  7. Grave new world. All hell breaks loose as the tundra thaws. A recent heatwave in Siberia’s frozen wastes has resulted in outbreaks of deadly anthrax and a series of violent explosions. Long dormant spores of the highly infectious anthrax bacteria frozen in the carcass of an infected reindeer rejuvenated themselves and infected herds of reindeer and eventually local people. As for the explosions, the heatwave thawed out dead vegetation and erupted in blowouts of highly flammable methane gas. (The Guardian)

  8. His desk was moved to the basement. Joel Clement was director of the Office of Policy Analysis at the U.S. Interior Department until last week. He was involuntarily moved to the department’s Office of Natural Resources Revenue. He believes he was retaliated against for speaking out publicly about the dangers that climate change poses to Alaska Native communities. (The Washington Post

  9. A. I am a good doctor. Artificial intelligence can help better diagnose schizophrenia, says University of Alberta and IBM researchers. The model was able to predict instances of schizophrenia with 74% accuracy. At this point we should probably just stick to compiling the list of things that AI can NOT do. (Edmonton Journal)

  10. Smorgasborg. Artificial intelligence is a monster that is happening, and will literally change everything in ways that we are only starting to wrap our heads around. We have come across a ton of articles about this revolution recently, and have finally found our favorite. James Manyika wrote an Executive Briefing called Technology, Jobs, and the Future of Work for the McKinsey Global Institute that will help you come to terms with the arrival of our new overlords.



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10 in 2 - Week of July 10th - The Dukes of Hazardous Waste

  • This is our 10 in 2 report for the week of July 10th

  • 10 news stories from the week that think are important, interesting, or infuriating, provided in about 2 minutes with links to the full stories found on our website.

 

...so here we go:

 

  1. Family-size in-flight bacon burger. New research shows that the most effective individual steps to tackle climate change aren't being discussed. They list four important things: eating a plant-based diet, avoiding air travel, living car-free, and having smaller families. The researchers “hope this information sparks discussion and empowers individuals.” (phys.org)

  2. Do as the Romans do. A New York man built a small food pantry in his yard to help hungry neighbors. Roman Espinoza calls it his “blessing box” The pantry has nonperishable food items and toiletries available for anyone to take, any time of the day, and is reminiscent of those tiny libraries that have been popping up in neighborhoods across the US. (CNN)

  3. Martial blah. Leaked documents and public records reveal a troubling fusion of private security, public law enforcement, and corporate money in the fight over the Dakota Access Pipeline. The Intercept did some amazing reporting that outlines the use of private security firm TigerSwan and it’s soldiers to disrupt the water protectors mission and reputation. (The Intercept)

  4. Calve your cake and eat it too. One of the biggest icebergs recorded in history, twice the volume of North America's Lake Erie, has calved away from the Larsen C ice shelf. We have mentioned this in past episodes, but the thing finally broke loose. It is worth repeating, because there are 32 countries that are smaller than this ice shelf. (Twitter)

  5. Dukes of Hazardous Waste. The state of Texas imposed penalties on less than 3 percent of illegal air pollution releases during industrial malfunctions and maintenance from 2011 through 2016, even though these incidents emitted more than 500 million pounds of pollutants. The lack of enforcement means that the owners are less likely to invest money to upgrade and repair known problems. (Environment Texas)

  6. Don’t be deterred. A new report from Global Witness warns of escalating violence against conservationists and protestors, from the U.S. to Africa and beyond. At least 200 people were murdered last year for protecting the land, water, and wildlife in their communities, including five park rangers in Africa’s Virunga National Park. (National Geographic)

  7. All work and no play calling. The top-tier artificial intelligence researchers are getting paid the salaries of NFL quarterbacks, which tells you the demand and the perceived value. Tom Eck, CTO of industry platforms at IBM said “Right now, AI is an elitist sport – there are very few people who know how to practice it.” (EFC)

  8. Juneau what? An Italian multinational oil and gas company has received permission to move ahead with drilling plans in federal waters off Alaska which environmental campaigners say will endanger polar bears, bowhead whales and other marine mammals. Not great news, but at least the permit does not authorize the company to produce oil yet. (The Guardian)

  9. ReFED up. Yesterday I had lunch at the high-tech healthy food joint, Eatsa, with Chris Cochrane, Executive Director of ReFED. The new non-profit is committed to reducing US food waste by 20% within a decade and has developed a comprehensive and practical roadmap to get there. This is one sustainability goal that I can’t imagine anyone being against and Chris is just the sort of leader to get it done.(ReFED)

  10. Podcast of the Week. My illustrious colleague and 10 in 2 report producer, Zach Winter, is really into this podcasting thing and he’s inspired me to listen to all sorts of interesting stuff. Periodically, we’ll share our favorite from the week. This week I invite you to listen to Sam Harris’ interview of historian Timothy Snyder where they discuss Dr. Snyder’s recent book On Tyranny. For anyone who believes in fact based decisions and the slippery political slope associated with spin, lies and propaganda, this is a must listen. (Waking Up with Sam Harris)



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10 in 2 - Week of July 3rd - The Myth of Clean Coal

  • This is our 10 in 2 report for the week of June 26th

  • 10 news stories from the week that think are important, interesting, or infuriating.

...so here we go:

  1. Make Life Itself Great Again. France will ban fossil fuel-powered vehicles by 2040 as part of Macron’s pledge to “make our planet great again,” with Trump’s decision to withdraw the US from the Paris Agreement, being named as the catalyst for this decision. (Think Progress)

  2. Building the Swedish Brand. Volvo Cars on Wednesday became the first mainstream automaker to sound the death knell of the internal combustion engine, saying that all the models it introduces starting in 2019 will be either hybrids or powered solely by batteries. (NYT)

  3. The Bear Truth. Google Earth has added live video feeds for watching natural wonders in real-time. The first location that you can check out is the Katmai National Park in Alaska, to see brown bears emerge from hibernation to catch salmon in the Brooks River. (TNW)

  4. The Myth of Clean Coal. A Mississippi clean coal power plant that has been under construction since 2010 has been shut down due to massive cost overruns. The owner of the plant, Southern Co, is preparing to take a loss of as much as $3.4 billion on the project. Coal baron Robert Murray says carbon capture and storage ‘does not work’ and ‘is just cover for the politicians.’ (Chicago Tribune)

  5. Windows to the future. In a new 8 part video series, PopTech and Microsoft spoke to experts on the subject of The Changing World of Work from around the world in an effort to understand what is happening. The series asks the questions: How do we lead in this world? How do we create value? How do we organize ourselves to be able to generate value collectively? (Microsoft)

  6. What will I do when I am replaced by a bot? Mark Zuckerberg has joined the ranks of many futurists by doubling down on promoting a universal basic income. The idea is simple, but not easy -  a percentage of the ungodly amount of wealth created by replacing bazillions of workers with low cost computers will be distributed to all the under employed thus solving for the problem that these machines will be so smart, so efficient and so cheap that there aren’t going to be all that many jobs for people is the coming future. (Business Insider)

  7. Leaf them to their work. Artificial leaves hold the promise of a clean energy future. Scientists’ efforts to emulate the process of photosynthesis are flourishing. Scientific American, together with the World Economic Forum, has named the artificial leaf one of the breakthrough technologies of 2017. (Scientific American)

  8. Kung Fuel Panda. A new solar power plant in Datong, China decided to have a little fun with its design. China Merchants New Energy Group, one of the country's largest clean energy operators, built a 248-acre solar farm in the shape of a giant panda. (Science Alert)

  9. Stop! In the name of love. The Guardian ponders how climate scepticism turned into something more dangerous - doubts about the science are being replaced by doubts about the motives of scientists and their political supporters. The long opinion piece calls for us to not respond with ever-greater certainty in the name of science. “Expertise doesn’t just need humility. It also needs to reclaim the idea of scepticism from the people who have abused it.” (The Guardian)

  10. If we can be sold things we don’t really need, why can’t we be sold things we do need? Google has partnered with The Common Ground Alliance — a group of the world’s largest advertisers — to launch the Common Future Project, a global YouTube-based campaign that aims to engage “Generation Z” (aged 15 to 24) around the Sustainable Development Goals. Google will provide a grant to support and amplify the campaign. (PR Newswire).



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10 in 2 - Week of June 26th - mail me to the GOP

  • This is our 10 in 2 report for the week of June 26th

  • 10 news stories from the week that think are important, interesting, or crazy

...so here we go:

1. As some Americans began to worry about what would happen to their coverage with the health-care bill that is currently on the table, others got to work on new ways to protest their government. Thus was born the website “mail me to the GOP” whose single purpose is getting your ashes to the congress member of your choice after your death. (http://mailmetothegop.com/)

2. The first baby Tapir born in the Iberá Provincial Reserve in 100 years. The surprise baby was born to a mother Tapir named Nena, who was relocated to a wildlife station late last year as part of an extended effort to rewild the native fauna in the growing network of national parks in Chile and Argentina. (Proyecto Iberá)

 

3. DENNIS LEE FORSGREN, a former lobbyist recently tapped to lead the Environmental Protection Agency office in charge of water safety, has deep ties to a fossil fuel advocacy group engaged in the promotion of the Dakota Access Pipeline as well as controversial offshore drilling efforts. (The Intercept

4. The largest study so far on the fraught question of whether neonicotinoid pesticides harm bees is providing new ammunition for those who argue against the use of the controversial chemicals. The large-scale field study found that overall, exposure to neonicotinoids harms bee populations. (Nature)

5. Sustainability rock star Bill McKibben wrote in this week's Rolling Stone about the need for real, measurable commitments. In particular, he called on politicians to: stop new fossil fuel infrastructure, commit to 100% renewables, and recognize that natural gas is as bad an enemy as coal or oil. (Rolling Stone

6. According to a survey from Euromonitor, the latest figures show that we’ll consume more than 580 billion plastic bottles by 2021–up from about 300 billion a decade ago. (Fast Company

7. The 'hidden costs' of carbon dioxide emissions are no longer hidden. Southern and Midwestern US states will suffer the biggest economic losses from climate change, according to a new study. The poorest third of counties are estimated to experience the largest losses by the end of this century, and will only increase overall inequality in those areas. (The Verge)

8. If I could be anything and do anything I want right now to win the fight against climate change, what would it be? In this week’s GreenBiz, our friend David Crane answers that question. His answer? He would have the world's 100 largest corporations put him in charge of their collective energy procurement worldwide, with the mandate to make them all 100 percent carbon-free by 2025. And we agree, if anyone one could do it, it is he. (GreenBiz)

9. That delaware sized iceberg in Antarctica looks like it’s about to finally break loose. It’s one of the largest iceberg calving events scientists have ever witnessed. The outer edge is now moving at “the highest speed ever recorded,” and glaciologists are watching the slow moving drama with great interest, because this event is anything but normal. (Gizmodo)

10. Hawaii has become the first state in the country to officially start exploring guaranteed basic income. The bill, passed recently by both houses of the state legislature in a unanimous vote, directs state agencies to analyze “universal basic income” and similar policy options.  (LA Times)

 

 

 



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10 in 2 - Week of June 19th - campaign finance, fake news, coal and executive egos

  • This is our 10 in 2 report for the week of June 19th

  • 10 news stories from the week that think are important, interesting, or crazy, provided in about 2 minutes with links to the full stories found on our website.

 

...so here we go:

  1. Reboot. On Wednesday, the Los Angeles Times reported on a 6.8 earthquake that struck Santa Barbara at 4:51pm. The only problem was, the Journalist who did the reporting was an algorithm called Quakebot, and the earthquake happened in 1925. (Gizmodo)

  2. If one were keeping score… According to Rainforest Action Network’s 8th annual fossil fuel finance report card. Big banks’ investments aren’t aligned with their climate change rhetoric. Led by Asian banks, the amount of D-’s and F’s are shocking. Especially, when the report’s release corresponds with a record setting week of heat throughout the northern hemisphere. (The Guardian) (Weather Underground)

  3. Proof our legal system is working. John Oliver did a hit piece on Robert Murray, CEO of Coal company Murray Energy Corporation. A few days later, Murray sued Oliver and Time Warner for defamation. The complaint notes that Time Warner “is widely reported as a top ten donor of Hillary Clinton.” thus implying the obvious link between campaign finance, fake news, coal and executive egos.. (Law Newz)

  4. Can we blame China? The state of California has again been named by the American Lung Association as the US state with the worst air quality — mostly as a result of having the highest ozone/smog levels out of any state in the country, but also high particle pollution levels. (Clean Technica)

  5. Invasion of the pyrosomes. A rare, tiny marine creature known as the “unicorn of the sea” has swarmed in its millions on the west coast of America, ruining fishermen’s nets and baffling scientists. Seriously, Google “large pyrosome” these things are otherworldly. (Business Insider)

  6. Future of Work. McDonald's shares hit an all-time high on Tuesday as Wall Street expects sales to increase from new digital ordering kiosks that will replace cashiers in 2,500 restaurants. I guess the market likes the where the future of work is headed. The administration has not yet claimed credit for the creation of these new robot jobs.  (CNBC)

  7. More on the future. Microsoft has joined the fray in partnership with Gimlet Creative on a new podcast called .future (dot-future), that aims to tell stories about growing technologies that touch our everyday lives–from the cloud, to gaming, to health–and how the decisions being made today will affect our lives in the future. (Fast Company)

  8. Pulling out the suspenders. The 2017 Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy Recipients have been announced in recognition of outstanding and innovative leadership in philanthropy. Honorees include Kris Tompkins for her and her husband, Doug’s, historic hardscrabble work creating parklands in Chile and Argentina. (Carnegie)

  9. Speaking of awards, this week the Corporate Eco Forum honored the Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance with its CK Prahalad award. REBA as its known is a grand and successful NGO/private sector collaboration focused on accelerating widespread adoption of renewable energy in the USA. An example of how collaborations are essential to solving wicked problems. (Corporate Eco Forum)

  10. The continued rise of the middle kingdom. The Washington Post argues that China has suddenly become a leader in the climate change movement, not because of a moral duty or to support global collective goals, rather for reasons of national economic development, control of energy infrastructure and global economic competitiveness of Chinese industry (Washington Post)



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10 in 2 - Week of June 12th - An Amputated Flatworm Fragment

10 news stories from the week that think are important, interesting, or crazy, provided in about 2 minutes with links to the full stories found on our website.

 

...so here we go:

 

  1. This week a judge ruled that the environmental survey approving the Dakota Access Pipeline was inadequate: In what’s being hailed a ‘significant victory’ for the pipeline’s opponents, a judge said he would consider whether operations must halt until assessment is redone. (Earth Justice)

  2. New York City will spend over $100 million on green rooftops and tree planting in an attempt to combat extreme heat in the city. Mayor de Blasio said “This is a question of equity; hotter summers, exacerbated by climate change, are a threat that falls disproportionately on communities of color and the elderly." (Gothamist)

  3. The ongoing water crisis in Flint has led to some manslaughter charges for a few of those involved. This has enormous implications for how environmental justice is served. Let’s all hope that this starts a trend towards holding those in power accountable for negligence in other underserved communities. (Vice)

  4. Brooklyn’s latest craze: making your own electric grid. Using blockchain, the same technology that makes Bitcoin possible, neighbors are buying and selling renewable energy to each other. It’s a very significant step up from cronuts. (Politico)

  5. An Artificial Intelligence developed its own non-human language. When Facebook designed chatbots to negotiate with one another, the bots made up their own way of communicating. (The Atlantic)

  6. A.I. will create more jobs that can’t be filled, not mass unemployment, says Alphabet’s Eric Schmidt. Clearly one of the new jobs it will create will be translating all the non-human communications. (CNBC)

  7. With the news that eCommerce giant Amazon has bought brick and mortar Whole Foods, and that brick and mortar Walmart has bought eCommerce retailer Bonobos, there are some interesting moves happening. The retail giants both want to sell us everything from tater tots to tailored shirts. Whether this is good or bad for the global economy is sure to be an ongoing debate. What is not up for debate, is that kombucha delivered by drone will be delicious. (NYT)

  8. More on the OHMnichannel. Turns out that Yoga and meditation are not just woo woo practice for aging hippies and tech CEO’s. A new study suggests that mindfulness practice can change our DNA in ways that ultimately lowers the risk of inflammation-related diseases and conditions. (NBC News)

  9. The Swedish parliament voted 254 to 41 to adopt the Climate Act, which commits the government to becoming a net-zero carbon emitter by 2045. It was supported by all parties except the far-right Sweden Democrats - the only Swedish party that does not believe in man-made climate change. (DW)

  10. An amputated flatworm fragment sent to space regenerated into a double-headed worm, a rare spontaneous occurrence of double-headedness. The study is considering how living in space could affect the human body at a level we can’t yet see, likely the result of leaving Earth’s electromagnetic field. (Science Friday)



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