Global warming could cut my old neighborhood off from the rest of Long Island

Global warming could cut my old neighborhood off from the rest of Long Island
The image above comes from ClimateCentral.org. You can put in your zip code or city name, and see how rising sea levels would affect that area. So, I put in 11743 (Huntington, Long Island, NY) and scrolled over to the Causeway. People from Lloyd Harbor and Lloyd Neck know what it is, but for everyone else, it’s a narrow strip of land, barely wide enough for a two-laner, connecting Lloyd Neck at the top to the rest of Long Island at the bottom. Judging from the predicted sea levels, the Causeway would be under water, as would parts of Lloyd Harbor Road, and Lloyd Neck could become an island. Of course, local government and homeowners could afford to raise the road, or build a retaining wall to keep Oyster Bay and Huntington Bay from surrounding the Neck. It would be expensive, but feasible. Now consider what happens in other parts of the world where people don’t have the capital to protect their homes from rising sea levels. They will lose their homes and will need to relocate inland. If you scroll northward, some homes in Fiddlers Green would be underwater, too. Global warming is happening, whether you want to believe ...

A week-long roller coaster for China’s viral anti-pollution video

A week-long roller coaster for China's viral anti-pollution video
Last weekend, just before an important national party congress meeting, former state media newscaster Chai Jing released her environmental video, 穹顶之下 (qióng dǐng zhī xià, or Under the Dome). By midweek, it had been viewed online more than 15 million times, and by Friday, hundreds of millions of times. Then it disappeared from China’s video streaming websites. Any residual links just give an error message saying the video is no longer available. Although Chai had obtained permission to share the self-produced video from government officials, it seems the widespread popularity of the film caught them off-guard. Discussion of the film is still being permitted online for now. Comments critical of the central government are being deleted, however. Although the movie first appeared with Chinese subtitles, common in China with scores of local languages, there were no complete English subtitles until Friday. Organized by a Chinese 12th grader and an expat, an international team translated the one hour and forty minutes of Chinese subtitles into English. The result can be seen on YouTube. Clicking the subtitles/CC button to the left of the gear icon will turn on the English subs. The future of the film, which Chai spent a year researching, ...

World’s tallest (sustainable) building to be built in Changsha 1

JISHOU, HUNAN — From the Shanghaiist, developers have been given a go-ahead to build a 2,749-foot, 202-story building in Changsha, the provincial capital of Hunan. It will then be just a wee bit taller than the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, making the Changsha project, Sky City, the world’s tallest building. Once it’s completed, China will have two skyscrapers (or four, if you include Hong Kong and Taiwan as most mainlanders might) among the top ten tallest buildings. Changsha has no buildings that come even close to this height, so Sky City will certainly, um, stand out from the crowd. That part of Hunan is also relatively flat, so Sky City will be visible for miles around. (Frankly, I am surprised Beijing is letting Changsha go ahead with this project. I’d have assumed the powers-that-be would prefer a showcase skyscraper like this one be in a major metropolis like Beijing, Shanghai, Chongqing or Guangzhou.) More details are at Treehugger.com. The builder is Broad Sustainable Construction, a Chinese firm which specializes in prefab construction. BSC claims they will be able to finish Sky City in seventh months, and that the “vertical city” of 30,000 residents will more environmentally friendly than China’s usual ...
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