Miami isn’t known as a city where it’s particularly easy to walk or bike. But underneath the city’s elevated rail line–which stretches 10 miles from downtown to the southern end of the county–a new park is beginning to counteract decades of car-centric design. The Underline, which broke ground today, combines green public space with paths that connect to transit stations, fully separated from the adjacent street, where 100,000 cars drive by each day. (The plan was a finalist in the Fast Company 2017 World Changing Ideas Award.) “Miami-Dade County is one of the most dangerous places to walk and bike in the country,” says Meg Daly, who started a nonprofit to champion the project after walking under the rail line–a dimly lit, dirty, unwelcoming area, surrounded by heavy traffic and hard-to-cross streets–and seeing its potential. “We’re not just moving in our cars because we’re car-centric, we’re … [Read more...] about Miami just broke ground on a new, High Line-inspired 10-mile park under its train tracks
By some measures, the American economy is booming. Corporations are raking in profits. Unemployment is low. But wages are still stagnant, and a new report says that only 28% of Americans can be considered financially healthy. “We felt like we needed to create a definitive study that helped to demonstrate that while the larger economic headlines around a roaring stock market, and low unemployment, and great consumer spending are out there, that’s not actually telling an accurate story,” says Jennifer Tescher, CEO of the Center for Financial Services Innovation, the organization that created the report, called the U.S. Financial Health Pulse. The organization, which works with startups that are building financial health tools, surveyed more than 5,000 Americans this year. Nearly half said that their spending had equaled or exceeded their income in the last 12 months. 44% of those relied on credit cards to make ends meet. Only 45% have enough to cover three months of … [Read more...] about Despite the “good economy,” only 28% of Americans are financially healthy
A year ago, Royal Dutch Shell, now the largest oil company in the world, acquired NewMotion, a company with thousands of electric car charging points throughout Europe. A month later, Shell started installing fast chargers at some of its largest gas stations. In late October, the company started installing ultrafast chargers that can fully charge the newest electric cars in 10 minutes. It’s one small piece of a company in transition as it grapples with how to address climate change. “If you want to be a long-term relevant company that is on the right side of history, you have to be involved in this discussion, because it’s the most important discussion of our time,” CEO Ben van Beurden tells Fast Company. By 2035, Shell plans to cut its carbon footprint 25%, and 50% by 2050–including the emissions not only from its own operations but from customers using its products. The cuts are in line with the company’s “Sky scenario,” a vision … [Read more...] about Is it possible for an oil company to help fight climate change?
Plug your devices into a new smart outlet for a week, and it will use AI to find patterns in your energy consumption–and then suggests a schedule for your gadgets to help you save energy. The outlet, which also graphs energy use in real time and helps you find the most energy-sucking appliances and gadgets in your home, is the first to use artificial intelligence and machine learning. “The key for us here is to make the whole thing as easy as possible,” says Hasty Granbery, founder and CEO of Currant, the startup making the new Currant Smart Outlet. “If you trying to persuade somebody to do something that’s good for the environment but requires a lot of effort on their part, they’ll tend to do it for a while and then they’ll kind of fall off in doing it.” Four years ago, Granbery started tracking his own electricity use–armed with a low-tech electricity meter and a spreadsheet–after getting an electric bill that said that he … [Read more...] about This smart outlet uses AI to help you lower your electric bill
Every day, it seems, we’re confronted by reminders that we’re living through times of unprecedented conflict, division, and threat to our future in the U.S., and on this planet. Just last week, leaders on the political left were mailed bomb-laden packages, and a man killed 11 people, including a Holocaust survivor, during services at a synagogue in Pittsburgh on October 27. Underpinning these horrific shocks are more pervasive worries: We’re still not making progress on climate change, and with the midterm elections less than a week away, the country continues to feel fractured. The most productive way to channel the anxiety that circulates around everything that’s happening: Voting on November 6. But people are, in all honesty, probably doing a fair bit of stress eating to cope, too. In an effort to tie this fairly universal coping mechanism back to political effort, Ben & Jerry’s has released, as of October 30, a new flavor intended to motivate … [Read more...] about With its new flavor, Ben & Jerry’s wants you to stress-eat about the midterms with purpose