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Solutions & sustainability - Jan 30

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Gasoline (song)

Sheryl Crow.com.
(Lyrics: Crow Music: Crow, Trott, Bottrell)

Way back in the year of 2017
The sun was growing hotter
And oil was way beyond its peak
When crazy Hector Johnson broke into a refinery
And the black gold started flowing
Just like Boston tea

It was the summer of the riots
And London sat in sweltering heat
And the gangs of Mini Coopers
Took the battle to the streets
But when the creed was handed down
For no more trucks and no more cars
They threw cans of petrol through the windows at Scotland Yard

Gasoline
Will be free, will be free
Gasoline
Will be free, will be free
(20 November 2007)
Interview with Sheryl Crow at New York Times:

Q: “Gasoline” is surely the first song about high gas prices.

A: It’s probably the first, and it could possibly be the last. It should be perceived as a futuristic song about people who would take to the streets and revolt and take back our freedom from the oppression of gas prices.

Contributor kjmclark writes:
We need more artists spreading the word.


Cheap at twice the price

Linda Grant, Guardian
It's expensive - but is it good quality? Tired of fast fashion, Linda Grant wanted her clothes to be well-made, ethically produced - and fashionable. But she soon discovered that high prices and designer labels are no guarantee
---
... This conversation reinforced my autumn resolution: that I would stop buying too many clothes, and buying them without thinking who made them, in what circumstances, or where. I had become sickened by fashion as disposable, instant gratification: clothes that are thrown away after a few weeks, not even because they are worn out but because a new trend has come in. And I wanted nothing more to do with clothes made by children in some godforsaken sweatshop. So I had made the decision to invest in fewer pieces, beautifully made classics whose quality and design would be the mainstays of my wardrobe for years to come.

The abysmal high-street Christmas sales figures, together with predictions that we are facing recession, has led some fashion writers to wonder if the craze for fast fashion is coming to an end. It is time, it feels, to return to a more prudent and ethical way of shopping: not to forsake fashion altogether - God forbid - but to shop more wisely.

I had begun my autumn resolution with a jacket from Armani Collezioni, which cost £495. As I walked out of the shop and down Bond Street, I experienced a lightheaded elation. I had moved on and up to a higher plane, taking me closer to the source of style, and further away from mass-production.

Then the thread on the buttons started to unravel. How could this be? This was Armani, and not cheap and cheerful Emporio Armani either.
(29 January 2008)
Good thought, but sensible clothing at £495 a shot may be outside the price range of many of us. My fashion hero is permaculture co-originator Bill Mollison, who appeared at a talk in Northern California in shorts and flip-flops (apparently this is standard Mollison dress). What are the environmental implication of keeping up with fashion? -BA


Europe thinks alternatively in quest to go 'green'

Jeffrey Stinson, USA TODAY
Europeans are experimenting with alternative, eco-friendly sources of energy that are, well, quite alternative.

Businesses and individuals are trying ways large, small and controversial to wean the Continent off expensive oil, gas and coal - and to combat climate change.

A Stockholm firm plans to use body heat generated from 250,000 daily commuters to help warm a 13-story office building. A giant kite helped tow a 10,000-ton freighter out of the German port of Bremerhaven last week.

And a crematorium in Manchester, England, this month proposed using recycled heat from its furnaces to warm its chapel. Sixteen local vicars gave the go-ahead on what the crematorium acknowledges is a potentially controversial alternative source of energy.
(30 January 2008)


High Oil Prices Boost Energy Efficiency - Report

Tom Bergin, Reuters via Planet Ark
High oil prices have spurred countries to use energy more efficiently, a report by an energy industry group said, but the authors say concerted government action is still needed to encourage less waste.

The World Energy Council, whose members include energy companies and government bodies in 90 countries, said a study it commissioned showed the long-standing trend of countries using less energy to generate each dollar of GDP had accelerated in the period 2000 to 2006, when oil prices hit new highs.

...Over the period 1990 to 2006, energy productivity increased at an average rate of 1.3 percent, but from 2000 to 2006, productivity grew 1.5 percent per year.

China was the principal exception, with its improvement in energy productivity falling to 1 percent per annum in 2000-2006 from 7.5 percent per annum in 1990-2000, as its economic growth soared to double-digit levels.

The development of more efficient technologies over time generally allows countries to use less energy to perform the same tasks. However, total energy use still tends to rise as increased wealth prompts greater overall consumption.
(30 January 2008)

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