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Category Archives: Energy

Data Reveals the True Impact of the Coronavirus Outbreak

Wired –  In some countries, satellite images, internet speed, and traffic information reveal what governments won’t. “As the coronavirus crisis engulfs the planet, some think that using official data to make sense of the situation only helps so much. Governments might be deliberately obfuscating what is going on in the country—as China did in the early stages of the outbreak; figures on cases and deaths might be fuzzy because of poor collection practices or even regional differences in how the data is gathered, as it is likely the case in Italy; more in general, official figures struggle to capture real-time developments as they happen on the ground…

Scanning cyberspace is not the only way of getting the pulse of the Covid-19 age. Samir Madani is the founder of TankerTrackers, a company that leverages open source information to provide insights on the global crude oil industry to small traders. As the coronavirus pandemic unfolded, he has turned to an eclectic suite of sources to navigate the mayhem. Combining data from vessel transponders with satellite images, he has periodically checked how many oil tankers are in anchorage in China, unable to deliver their cargo—an intimation both of how well China’s ports are functioning amid the pandemic, and of how well industrial production is keeping up…”

Surprising sources of light pollution in states around the US

Mysterious Light Sources Alex Altair: “I got my first telescope in 2017, in time for the Great American Eclipse. I started paying attention to the concept of light pollution, including finding detailed maps of what places had high or low amounts of light pollution. After looking up nearby areas that were potentially good for stargazing,… Continue Reading

You want to reduce the carbon footprint of your food?

Focus on what you eat, not whether your food is local – “Our World in Data presents the empirical evidence on global development in entries dedicated to specific topics. This blog post draws on data and research discussed in our entry on the Environmental impacts of food and CO2 and Greenhouse Gas Emissions.”People across the… Continue Reading

Global Tailings Dam Portal Project

Press release, 24 January 2020: World’s first public database of mine tailings dams aims to prevent deadly disasters – “The team at GRID-Arendal has built the Global Tailings Portal, a public, searchable database with detailed information on more than 1,700 mine tailings dams around the world. The data is based on disclosures provided by mining… Continue Reading

The Philadelphia Suburbs Where Many Don’t Drink the Water

WSJ.com – About 80,000 people in three townships outside Philadelphia live in an area where the groundwater has been contaminated by chemicals used for decades in firefighting foam at two nearby decommissioned military bases. The Defense Department has cited 401 bases in the U.S. with a known or suspected release of the firefighting foam containing chemicals… Continue Reading

U.S. Media Polarization and the 2020 Election: A Nation Divided

Deep partisan divisions exist in the news sources Americans trust, distrust and rely on: “As the U.S. enters a heated 2020 presidential election year, a new Pew Research Center report finds that Republicans and Democrats place their trust in two nearly inverse news media environments.  Overall, Republicans and Republican-leaning independents view many heavily relied on… Continue Reading

The environmental cost of keeping mail and files online keeps rising

Bloomberg via Japan Times / no paywall: “Everyone has seen warnings at the end of email saying, “Please consider the environment before printing.” But for those who care about global warming, you might want to consider not writing so many emails in the first place. More and more, people rely on their electronic mailbox as… Continue Reading

OPEC World Oil Outlook 2019

“OPEC’s World Oil Outlook (WOO) is part of the Organization’s commitment to market stability. The publication is a means to highlight and further the understanding of the many possible future challenges and opportunities that lie ahead for the oil industry. It is also a channel to encourage dialogue, cooperation and transparency between OPEC and other… Continue Reading

Eurasia Group’s Top risks For 2020

This is Eurasia Group’s annual forecast of the political risks that are most likely to play out over the course of the year. This year’s report was published on 6 January 2020. “2020 is a tipping point. We’ve lived with growing levels of geopolitical risk for nearly a decade, but without a true international crisis.… Continue Reading

99 Good News Stories You Probably Didn’t Hear About in 2019

Future Crunch – If we want to change the story of the human race in the 21st century, we have to change the stories we tell ourselves. “…There were other stories out there, stories of conservation, better health, rising living standards, tolerance, peace, cleaner energy and environmental stewardship. Most of them didn’t make it onto… Continue Reading

The very big recycling myth and microplastic found in snow around the globe

The New York Times – The Great Recycling Con – The greatest trick corporations ever played was making us think we could recycle their products. “In the Video Op-Ed, we debunk a recycling myth that has lulled us into guilt-free consumption for decades.This holiday season, the United States Postal Service expects to ship almost one… Continue Reading