Medillin is the 2nd largest city in Colombia and, like many big urban centers, traffic and congestion–and chaos–often rules the streets. On top of that, many Colombians who live in suburbs on the steep slopes surrounding the city have long had a tough time getting to work and back every day. But local authorities have come up with an innovative and eco-friendly way to bring commuters in and out of the city: the Medillin Metrocable. Check out this report!
DateFebruary 21, 2011
Pictures Tell a Thousand Words
Yet another post about forests, but it IS the International Year of Forests! Conservation International has named the ten most threatened forest hot spots, and they include Atlantic Forest, Sundaland, Philippines and the Indo-Burma region among others.
National Geographic is known for its stunning photos–of people, places, anything. The magazine has collected images of the threatened hot spots on its website, and the give us a glimpse of the people and animals who stand to suffer if conservation efforts don't become a big priority in those regions.
Do you live near any of these hotspots? What do you think the "average" person can do to pitch in? Send us your input!
DateFebruary 17, 2011
Hol(l)y Wood in Berlin
When the Berlinale, Germany's biggest film festival, takes place early every year even Hollywood is stopping by. For ten days lots of well known actors and directors are giving the capital the shiny flair of a movie metropolis. The eyes of the media are on Berlin.
Could you imagine a setting more fitting to highlight the importance of saving our climate?
That's why the festival is accompanied by a huge display of the iconic "HOLYWOOD" lettering from the Hollywood hills – in the "Tiergarten" park in Berlin's center. Artist Ralf Schmerberg has build up the installation to support the initiative "10,000 Trees for Berlin" and a book about the forest. The installation will be at the Tiergarten until the 20th of February 2011. You will hardly miss the sign between Potsdamer Platz and the Brandenburger Gate, because the letters are huge, 13 meters tall and all together about 53 meters wide.
So, what is the initiative meant to achieve? Well, 10,000 trees are currently missing on the streets of Berlin. The NGO's plan is to fill the empty spots in the city with new trees. Everyone can participate by sponsoring one or more of the missing trees. Trees are valuable and wood is holy, so to speak – hence the apparent misspelling in the sign.
For more information please visit the project's website.
DateFebruary 14, 2011
Tagsberlin, berlinale, brandenburg gate, climate change, energy, entega, holy wood, planting, potsdamer platz, schmerberg, tree
Romania Wind-ing Up Eastern Europe
Vestas is the biggest wind turbine producer in the world–there are currently around 41,000 of the company's turbines are operating around the world right now. Vestas has decided to locate its new Eastern Europe wind power hub in Romania. Why?
Vestas thinks Romania will soon turn into a booming center for wind power because the country's government has thrown its weight behind alternative energy sources, especially wind–so there's big opportunity for investments. Right now, Vestas has installed 22 wind turbines in Romania, and they're planning to put in another about another 55.
That means Romania could provide a big boost to the rest of Eastern Europe. In the future, its own alternative energy production could power homes across the region, and the country might even serve as an inspiration among its neighbors to make similar investments in wind power. Some experts believe Romania will get 24% of its energy from renewable sources by the year 2020. So could Romania be changing the face of energy production in Eastern Europe? We'll have to wait and see…
DateFebruary 14, 2011
Change in Egypt – Hope for Uganda?
People in Uganda are watching the Situation in Egypt very carefully. On February 18th Uganda is holding a national election next week and some are expecting a similar situation to break out here as it did in Egypt. Some in the Capital Kampala hope of a Change in Uganda as it happend in Egypt those days. Nearly everyone is talking about voter fraud. Today the biggest newspaper in Uganda published a donor-funded poll survey. It indicated that the current president, Yoweri Museveni, is going to lead with about 65% of the vote. Quite a few eyebrows were raised in a wait-a-minute kind of way. Because of economic and social problems and corruption in Uganda the president's popularity seem to be declining. Many religious leaders are trying to appease the people and to prevent riots. In the clip you see the Mufti of Uganda, Sheikh Ramadan Mubajje. During his prayer he is calling on the people to vote and to make the right decision. Everyone is afraid of the next Friday, the day of the national Uganda election. If the president wins, many are not ready to believe that it was a fair election. But will they want to demonstrate against the re-elected president and perhaps bring violence to the country?
DateFebruary 11, 2011