Daily Green Wrap-Up 3.February, 2012

India’s remarkable growth in solar power, which TreeHugger has been following for some time, has gained the nation another superlative: According to new analysis by Bloomberg New Energy Finance, India led the world in 2011 for green power growth.
Much as previous industries were built on materials like steel and concrete, the building material of the 21st century is code. The web, which is built on countless lines of code, is now connecting physical resources (from your mobile to your iPad to your TV) – it will play a crucial role in connecting consumption and activity data, unlocking environmental intelligence that helps us save money, be more efficient, and help us reach an environmentally sustainable future.
The Climate Commissioner for the European Union, Connie Hedegaard, told reporters today in New Delhi that she believes the European Union should pledge to double their renewable energy supply by 2030 and spoke of hopes that the rest of the world would follow suit. She was speaking in advance of this year’s United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development which will be held in Rio this June (also called Rio+20), Hedegaard seemed to be opening up another moment for world leaders to agree to try to reduce emissions related to global warming before it is too late.
Someday we’ll fix infrastructure and the environment in the same way that Arizona suburbanites fix their lawns: By slapping on a coat of paint. Science has already made great strides on carbon-eating paint, and the kind of paint that can make windows into solar panels. And now researchers at at Glasgow’s University of Strathclyde have developed paint that can detect underlying structural problems in bridges, mines, and turbines, allowing engineers to head disaster off at the pass.
In 2005, while teaching history at a French university, I was struck by the general disbelief among students that rational and sensitive human beings could ever hold others in bondage. Slavery was so obviously evil that slave-holders could only have been barbarians. My students could not entertain the idea that some slave-owners could have been genuinely blind to the harm they were doing.

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