Thursday, November 30, 2006

The Electric (car) Slide

Maybe the backlash following the death of the electric car has had a bigger impact than previously thought. GM has announced that they are beginning redevelopment of a new electric version of the Saturn Vue, though they can't say right now when it will be ready. Check out this article for more info, and note that includes a mention that all Hummers will soon be converted to run on E85 fuel (which is only kind of better than gasoline) Perhaps we should all write a thank-you letter to GM for their renewed commitment to fuel efficiency and environmental responsibility .

Saturday, November 25, 2006

"When 98 percent of scientists agree, who is Shell to say, 'Let's debate the science'?"

That quote is from John Hofmeister, president of Shell Oil Co. He agrees that we need to do something to deal with increasing levels of greenhouse gas emissions, and in this article it looks like that will soon be happening. It's amazing how much has changed in only the few weeks since the Democrats gained control of the House and Senate. Maybe things will actually get done now.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Travelling green (or not)

To be... now offers the option of purchasing TerraPass for all flights booked through the site, ranging from $5.99 each for a short flight to $29.99 for international flights. This is the cost Expedia pays, so all of the money goes directly to TerraPass to offset the greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere during the flight. Check out the TerraPass option on Expedia here or learn more about TerraPass here.

Or not to be...
Just saw "Who Killed the Electric Car?" It made me want to never own a car again, because the car companies are all the same. Maybe Toyota and some of the others have gotten better, but GM is still evil. There are two interesting parts in the movie that have nothing to do with the topic: first of all, Mel Gibson is one of the featured celebrities, and really, the guy gets more nuts by the day; second, two women protesting the transfer of a number of electric cars to the demolition site park their car peacefully in front of the truck. When the cops pull them out of the car and arrest them (the women are peaceful the whole time and don't resist arrest), the cops put the plastic handcuffs (plastic baggie ties, really) on the white woman and real handcuffs on the African-American woman. Maybe it's just coincidence, but I just thought that was interesting.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Weather or not...

I have lived in North Carolina for three months now, and I have two questions:

1. Why would anyone want to live in North Carolina during the summer, when it is completely hot and humid and there is no major body of water in sight? Chicago in the summer is just perfect, and I've had the most fun ever during the two summers I lived in the city of Chicago.

2. Why would anyone want to live in Chicago during the winter, when the cold wind takes your breath away and the sun doesn't come out for weeks? The past month in Durham has felt more like September in Chicago, and locals aren't terribly surprised that it's going to be 78 degrees and sunny tomorrow. It's kind of weird to not feel cold and depressed in November, because that's about all I've ever known. Not that I miss it.

On a completely baffling side note, I just learned today that Time Warner Cable has a monopoly down here (not the baffling part), and that they have decided not to carry the Bravo and LOGO (a network with gay- and lesbian-themed programming) channels because "Time Warner carries only family-friendly programming" and apparently Bravo and LOGO aren't "family-friendly." Also, North Carolina's policy for teaching health in school includes abstinence-only sex education, and rape prevention education in schools suffers because it means people would have to admit that kids actually have sex. So I guess it's too much to ask to have good weather *and* open-minded community members. Not that I'm surprised.