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    Daily Digest 10/6 – The Third Industrial Revolution, The Most Ambitious Environmental Lawsuit Ever

    by DailyDigest

    Monday, October 6, 2014, 2:26 PM

Economy

Consumerism Is Past Its Sell-By Date (Adam)

Another difficulty is our tendency to place someone in control of a single feedback loop and judge them on its performance. The problem with feedback loops is that they measure only one thing and ignore everything else. It follows immediately that when someone’s goal is to meet a given financial target or else, then anything that achieves it will be employed, including over-fishing, clear-felling, bribery and selling nuns into slavery. It’s not that bankers are unethical, it’s just that ethics has been eliminated from the system in which they work.

Inside the Koch Brothers' Toxic Empire (jdargis)

It is often said that the Koch brothers are in the oil business. That's true as far as it goes – but Koch Industries is not a major oil producer. Instead, the company has woven itself into every nook of the vast industrial web that transforms raw fossil fuels into usable goods. Koch-owned businesses trade, transport, refine and process fossil fuels, moving them across the world and up the value chain until they become things we forgot began with hydrocarbons: fertilizers, Lycra, the innards of our smartphones.

The Third Industrial Revolution (Dana T.)

The intelligent TIR infrastructure—the Internet of Things—will connect everyone and everything in a seamless network. People, machines, natural resources, production lines, logistics networks, consumption habits, recycling flows, and virtually every other aspect of economic and social life will be connected via sensors and software to the TIR platform, continually feeding Big Data to every node—businesses, homes, vehicles, etc.—moment to moment in real time. The Big Data, in turn, will be analyzed with advanced analytics, transformed into predictive algorithms, and programmed into automated systems, to improve thermodynamic efficiencies, dramatically increase productivity, and reduce the marginal cost of producing and delivering a full range of goods and services to near zero across the entire economy.

Key Events In The Spread Of Ebola (jdargis)

It began in December 2013 in a village deep in the forests of southeastern Guinea, when a 2-year-old boy named Emile developed a mysterious illness.

But it wasn’t until August that the World Health Organization conceded that the worst Ebola outbreak on record had become an international public health emergency. By then, the deadly tide had reached Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation, and casualties were beginning to wash up on U.S. and European shores.

Madrid Moves Toward a Car-Free Center City (jdargis)

The new rule is expected to reduce traffic in the affected areas by at least one third. Motorcycles and delivery vehicles will be able to enter the zones at certain hours.

Justice Minister Alberto Ruiz-Gallardón told El Pais, “The main objective is to reduce traffic passing through neighborhoods and looking for parking agitation, while increasing parking spaces for residents.”

The 10 Worst Energy-Related Disasters Of Modern Times (James S.)

Drilling for oil several miles below the surface of the sea involves staggering engineering challenges. Bringing up coal from deep underground puts miners’ lives at risk. Nuclear energy catastrophes, though rare, can lead to hellish, unlivable zones. And Mother Nature’s wrath can wreak havoc by knocking energy supplies offline. Below is a list of 10 massive disasters that were either a result of something gone terribly wrong during energy production, or that resulted in millions of people losing access to energy.

The Most Ambitious Environmental Lawsuit Ever (jdargis)

Beneath the surface, the oil and gas industry has carved more than 50,000 wells since the 1920s, creating pockets of air in the marsh that accelerate the land’s subsidence. The industry has also incised 10,000 linear miles of pipelines, which connect the wells to processing facilities; and canals, which allow ships to enter the marsh from the sea. Over time, as seawater eats away at the roots of the adjacent marsh, the canals expand. By its own estimate, the oil and gas industry concedes that it has caused 36 percent of all wetlands loss in southeastern Louisiana.

The Sand Thieves: World’s Beaches Become Victims of Construction Boom (jdargis)

Diminutive Cape Verde, located around 600 kilometers (373 miles) west of Senegal, is comprised of nine inhabited islands in the Atlantic Ocean formed by volcanoes. It’s a beguiling land, one where papayas, mangos and pineapples grow between canyons. The sun shines year-round, the waters of the Atlantic foam on its shores and rare turtles bury their eggs on beaches. Cape Verde is considered one of the safest and most stable regions in Africa. It would be a dream destination for tourists if it weren’t for the fact that the Cape Verdeans are hard at work destroying their beaches.

Gold & Silver

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