Nottingham to lead the way in city-centre regeneration

Nottingham to lead the way in city-centre regeneration

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Heatherwick Studio has revealed plans to use the remains of the half-demolished 1970s Broadmarsh shopping mall as part of its post-pandemic vision for Nottingham city centre

The proposals by Thomas Heatherwick’s practice for the long-troubled 8ha plot feature a major ‘green space which will permeate the whole site and weave in and out of the [centre’s] frame’.

The vision, drawn up with socially responsible development company Stories, also includes 750 new homes in the shadow of Nottingham Castle, recreating ‘lost street connections’, the overhaul of the city’s cave network, the transformation of the existing Severns House into a hotel and 37,000m² of office and conference space.

The concept, which received initial backing from Nottingham City Council today (7 December), has been billed as a ‘once in many generations’ opportunity for Nottingham to ‘lead the way in city-centre regeneration following the impacts of Covid-19 and online retailing’.

 


Read the whole article in Architects’ Journal.


 

 

 

Seaweed is gaining importance as a source of human food

Seaweed is gaining importance as a source of human food

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Seaweed is gaining importance as a source of human food, animal feed and health products, and in addition, have wide ranging industrial applications. Seaweed can grow faster than any land plant and requires neither fresh water, nor fertilization for cultivation.

As food, one can compare seaweed and kelp with fruits and vegetables. The different sea vegetables have many different flavors, characteristics, textures and colors, and differ from each other in the same way as apples, pumpkins and herbs.


This information comes from the website of Norwegian Seaweed Association.


China is Building Sponge Cities to Fix Its Flood Problem

China is Building Sponge Cities to Fix Its Flood Problem

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Once a largely rural country, China now has more than 100 cities with populations of over a million people, and all that building on former farmland has led to a major downside, flooding. But instead of constructing big barriers like others have done, China is turning back to nature for the solution, upgrading its cities so that they welcome the water rather than hold it back.

 


 
 

How China Turned the Desert into Green Forests

How China Turned the Desert into Green Forests

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China is rebuilding the Great Wall of China. However, now they build not with stones, mortar, sand and rubble, designed to stop the enemy hordes. Nowadays they build with trees. Just like the wall erected many years ago, the world’s largest man-made forest should stop the enemy that China has been fighting for many years and which is no less dangerous than the problem of overpopulation. This enemy is the desert that occupies most of eastern China and continues to grow non-stop.
 


 
 

Pipistrel nears launch of new hydrogen-powered 19-seater

Pipistrel nears launch of new hydrogen-powered 19-seater

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Slovenia’s Pipistrel Aircraft, best known for its range of lightweight two-seaters, is nearing the launch of a new hydrogen fuel-cell- and battery-powered 19-seat hybrid that it hopes will revolutionise the commuter-category segment.

Dubbed the “Miniliner”, the aircraft could enter service by 2030, the company says, and will offer a substantial cut in operating costs against current designs.

Pipstrel says the Miniliner will be able to perform short point-to-point services between cities, boosting connectivity for underserved locations, or what it calls “microfeeder” flights into bigger hubs.

Power from the fuel cells will be sufficient for most departures, but batteries are provided to boost short-field performance, allowing departures from runways down to 800m (2,620ft). This, it says, will allow access to 80% of Europe’s airports.

While Pipistrel sees the optimum flight length as between 160-215nm (300-400km), the Miniliner will be able to fly for around 1,000nm on a single tank of liquid hydrogen.


Read the whole article in FlightGlobal.


Electric cars rise to record 54% market share in Norway

Electric cars rise to record 54% market share in Norway

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Norway became the first country in the world where the sale of electric cars has overtaken those powered by petrol, diesel and hybrid engines last year, with the German carmaker Volkswagen replacing Tesla as the top battery-vehicle producer, data shows.

Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) made up 54.3% of all new cars sold in the Nordic country in 2020, a global record, up from 42.4% in 2019 and from a mere 1% of the overall market a decade ago, the Norwegian Road Federation (OFV) said.

Seeking to become the first nation to end the sale of petrol and diesel cars by 2025, oil-producing Norway exempts fully electric vehicles from taxes imposed on those relying on fossil fuels.

The policy has turned the country’s car market into a laboratory for carmakers seeking a path to a future without internal combustion engines, vaulting new brands and models to the top of bestseller lists in recent years.

While the sale of BEVs had broken the 50% mark in individual months, 2020 was the first time that fully electric cars outsold the combined volume of models containing internal combustion engines for a year as a whole.


Read the whole article in The Guardian.


 

In this Super Bowl commercial, GM and Will Ferrell want to challenge America to out-EV Norway. Then they have a long way to go. Norway is the first country in the world with over 50% of its new cars being electric because of good incentives. In USA the percent is only slightly more than 1 %.

 

 

This British farm went from a ‘biological desert’ to biodiversity hotspot

This British farm went from a ‘biological desert’ to biodiversity hotspot

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During the spring and summer months, the birdsong on Knepp estate is a glorious cacophony of sound.

Walking through the scrubland of this 3,500-acre estate in West Sussex in the south of England, it’s hard to believe the tangled thickets and rugged pastures were once orderly arable fields.
The estate, which includes a 19th century castle, has belonged to the Burrell family for over 200 years. Charlie Burrell inherited it in 1985, when he was just 21.
“I came out of agricultural college incredibly enthusiastic about farming,” he says. “We’d been taught that conventional farming can work.”
But by the late 1990s, with the farm producing low yields and costs rising, the estate was facing serious financial trouble.

Burrell realized that the farm occupied “very poor agricultural land” and was destined never to produce high yields.
“I got to the point when I just felt that I couldn’t go on, because we actually were beginning to lose serious money,” says Burrell. “I needed to change and to change radically.”
Burrell and his wife, Isabella Tree, decided to turn to nature for a solution and in 2001, set about “rewilding” the estate. Knepp is now home to an astonishing array of biodiversity and has become a celebrated conservation success story, attracting many rare species and transforming the landscape from English country farm to untamed wilderness.
“We were living in a biological desert,” says Tree. “Now, ecologists are blown away all the time by just the amount of life here.”


Read the whole article by Hazel Pfeifer in CNN.


 

 

The world’s largest private initiative regarding the ocean: REV Ocean

The world’s largest private initiative regarding the ocean: REV Ocean

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REV Ocean is focussed on reversing negative environmental conditions in the ocean by increasing knowledge and developing concrete sustainable solutions.

https://www.revocean.org/

From understanding to sustainable solutions with four unprecedented ocean initiatives:

1) Exploring our blue planet with the world’s largest and most advanced research and expedition vessel.
https://www.revocean.org/vessel/

2) Connecting data, people & technology to drive sustainable ocean governance and blue economy. Constructing an intelligent, all-encompassing and open-access Ocean Data Platform.
https://www.oceandata.earth/

https://www.revocean.org/platform/oceandata/

Video: https://vimeo.com/367752466

3) Gathering decision-makers, NGOs, scientific communities and other key stakeholders at the World Ocean Headquarters at Fornebu, Oslo.
https://www.revocean.org/headquarters/woh/

4) The Plastic REVolution Foundation has been established to find the best opportunities to support Ghana and pilot solutions that can be scaled-up globally.
https://www.revocean.org/plast_ghana/

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