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The Longest Car-Free Bicycle Routes In The Northeast

by Tracy McGill •

Couple cycling around Bewl Water on a sunny afternoon, near Lamberhurst in the High Weald of Kent, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Bewl Water, Kent, England.  Additional Credit: Kent Tourism Alliance

Car-free bicycle routes in the Northeast can be found on rail trails and local town greenways. With 392 open trails encompassing 3,233 miles, the Northeast region can rival the rail trails of the Midwest, where the rail trail movement began. With heavily traveled and traffic-congested roads, cyclists and other transportation advocates embrace the development of bicycle routes in this area.

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Germany Is Now 20% Powered By Renewable Energy

by Justin Phelps •

When the largest economy in the European Union derives 20% of its energy from renewable sources, it is a milestone worthy of international attention. Germany’s renewable energy consumption jumped 2.5% within the last year, sending the total consumption of green power in that country to 20.8%. Since 2000, Germany’s use of renewable energy has increased 15 percentage points.

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Greece Plans To Construct World’s Largest Solar Farm (200 Megawatts)

by Justin Phelps •

The wave of interest in solar power across Europe has now touched Greece, and in a big way. The Mediterranean country of over ten million inhabitants plans to construct Earth’s biggest solar farm. Estimated to cost €600 million ($822 million), the project will cover 1,285 acres of depleted coal mines in the northern city of Kozani.

Go Car-Free in DC and Save More Than $10,000 A Year

by Justin Phelps •

A recently-published study by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) ranks the top 20 cities where going car-free will save the most money. Number 14 on the list is Washington, DC, which has nearly 200,000 car-less households already. The APTA’s report claims that the average DC resident would save $10,282 per year in transportation-related costs by giving up his or …

Dutch Electric Bike Sales Outstripping City Bikes

by Justin Phelps •

Electric bicycle sales are on the rise worldwide, and nowhere is this phenomenon more apparent than in the Netherlands, where revenue from e-bike sales recently surpassed revenue from city bike sales. The Netherlands was the first nation to enact an official national bicycle policy, and the country has thousands of miles of bicycle paths and lanes. Bicycle parking is plentiful …

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Stunning Vertical Forest Skyscraper By Stefano Boeri’s

by Benjamin Roman •

Urban living requires efficient use of space, but it can be a very environmentally-friendly lifestyle:  city residents generally live in small homes with access to walkable neighborhoods and public transportation.  One common downside is a lack of green space, but architect Stefano Boeri aims to change all that with his “Bosco Verticale” concept.  Italian for “vertical forest”, his project was …

Bike Helmet Laws Discourage Bike Sharing

by Tracy McGill •

Bike sharing programs are sprouting up in cities across the globe. From Dublin to Minneapolis, Barcelona to Tulsa, and Washington D.C. to Hangzhou, China bike sharing has become a viable transportation alternative. After seeing the success of other U.S. cities, New York City is set to have a bike sharing up and running in April of 2012. However, one place …

Two Wind Farms Get New Zealand Closer To 90% Renewable Power

by Justin Phelps •

New Zealand is one big step closer to accomplishing the ambitious goal of generating 90% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2025. The country already produces nearly 80% of its power from clean sources, including hydropower, geothermal, and wind farms. With hydropower approaching its natural limit, New Zealand is investing heavily in two huge new wind farms.

Astrophysicist’s Technique Could Cut Plane Boarding Time In Half

by Justin Phelps •

Fermilab scientist Jason Steffen recently presented a creative and simple solution to a problem that affects hundreds of millions of people per year: inefficient airplane boarding procedures. Typically, airlines board in several zones, from back to front, one zone at a time. Though it may appear logical, this method is full of disorganization. Passengers in a given zone are all …

Lighting Costs Cut By 90% Using Intelligent LEDs

by Justin Phelps •

A company called Digital Lumens has introduced product that networks LED lights together to form an “intelligent” lighting system. The system can turn on lights if people are present in a room, and adjust brightness levels over the course of a day. Overall, the system can cut lighting costs by 90% for commercial sites like warehouses. A real world example is …