News/Links March 12

The True Cost of Powering an Electric Car

Because of the variety of utility rates in the U.S., a 2011 Nissan Leaf that’s a bargain to drive in Washington — $28.29 for 1,000 miles — is pricey in Hawaii, where those 1,000 miles would cost $97.21. A conventional car getting 36 mpg would make that trip for the same money. For consumers primarily interested in driving an EV to save money, it’s critical to know actual electric rates (and the current cost of gasoline, for comparison purposes) instead of relying on national averages.

 

The Myth of Renewable Energy

Renewable energy sounds so much more natural and believable than a perpetual-motion machine, but there’s one big problem: Unless you’re planning to live without electricity and motorized transportation, you need more than just wind, water, sunlight, and plants for energy. You need raw materials, real estate, and other things that will run out one day. You need stuff that has to be mined, drilled, transported, and bulldozed — not simply harvested or farmed. You need non-renewable resources.

Self-interest and the Elite

The answer Piff found after conducting seven different experiments is: no. The pursuit of self-interest is a “fundamental motive among society’s elite, and the increased want associated with greater wealth and status can promote wrongdoing,” Piff and his colleagues wrote yesterday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

US and UN demand end to Syrian bloodshed

“The international community should say with one voice, without hesitation or caveat, that the killing of innocent Syrians must stop and a political transition must begin,” Clinton said.

William Hague, Britain’s foreign secretary whose country organised the debate as president of the Security Council for March, said the “the situation in Syria casts a long shadow over this debate”.

“In the eyes of the overwhelming majority of the world, this council has so far failed in its responsibilities toward the Syrian people.”

Madagascar storms and emergency aid

More than 110 are dead and 330,000 homeless after two tropical storms battered Madagascar over the past month, says the island nation’s disaster management agency.

Most of the deaths occurred last week when Irina struck eastern Madagascar from February 26-March 2, but the bulk of crop damage and housing loss was caused by Cyclone Giovanna which hit February 13 and 14.

~ by farnaby on March 12, 2012.

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