This Week’s Top 10 (10/21/07-10/27/07)

  1. California Wildfires Skip ‘Shelter’ Communities from NPR

    Homes spared in the wildfires in Southern California were in so-called “shelter-in-place” communities. They’re designed so fire goes around instead of through them, enabling residents to stay safely if there is no time to evacuate.

  2. Poor air quality after California fires safer than indoor air from biomass-burning in low-income countries from THD Blog

    The point the [Berkeley School of Public Health] prof made was that as bad as the air is there, the particulate matter density of 200-300 micrograms per cubic meter (10x greater than average figures for US cities) is still less than the levels typically seen in biomass-burning homes in the developing world.

    Malibu and Southern California Wildfires 10/21/07

    duration: 5min 18sec
  3. Cleantech Exits: M&As Are Weak, Go IPO from Earth2Tech

    When it comes to finding a successful exit for your cleantech startup, good luck finding a buyer willing to pay the price you want. That was the consensus of investors at the Dow Jones Alternative Energy Conference this week. The cleantech industry is too young for its M&A market to have matured, and the IPO market, for certain sectors, is offering a lot better options.

  4. White House ‘Eviscerates’ CDC Director’s Senate Testimony On Global Warming from Think Progress

    On the CDC’s Director Julie Gerberding’s testimony before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on the “Human Impacts of Global Warming.”

    “It was eviscerated,” said a CDC official, familiar with both versions, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the review process.

    The official said that while it is customary for testimony to be changed in a White House review, these changes were particularly “heavy-handed,” with the document cut from its original 14 pages to four. It was six pages as presented to the Senate committee.

    The White House’s deletions included “details on how many people might be adversely affected because of increased warming and the scientific basis for some of the CDC’s analysis on what kinds of diseases might be spread in a warmer climate and rising sea levels.”

  5. From Darfur to Shanghai from How the World Works

    China’s interest in African oil has exposed its companies to increasing risk in recent months. Separatist rebels in Ethiopia’s remote Somali region killed nine Chinese workers in a raid on an oil installation in April. Chinese oil workers have also been kidnapped in volatile southern Nigeria.

    Also of interest: Buffett sells entire PetroChina stake

  6. Bednets and the Demise of Social Marketing – What the NY Times Missed from

    The New York Times ran an interesting but rather incomplete article yesterday, discussing the split over anti-malaria bednet distribution strategies in Africa and the apparent demise of “social marketing” as a legitimate approach to reducing illness on a large scale. The article focuses on an ongoing debate in the aid community over whether or not insecticide-treated bednets, produced by Danish and Japanese makers and purchased by aid agencies, should always be given way in mass quantities for free.

  7. Can Africa surpass Japan? from PSD Blog

    If a single African country were to incorporate the best practices that are already in place across the sub-Sahara region, it would rank eighth worldwide. This was one of the observations that business leaders made last Friday at an award ceremony for the top two African reformers – Ghana and Kenya.

  8. 21 “mega-cities” in danger from rising seas from Boing Boing

    The nonprofit Worldwatch Institute has released a list of 21 “mega-cities” of 8 million people or more that are in direct danger as a result of global warming and rising seas

  9. Rwanda aims to become Africa’s high-tech hub from Christian Science Monitor

    The African country aims to turn itself into the ‘Singapore of Africa.’

  10. Ugandans Give New Life to Plastic Bags from Treehugger

    Progressive environmental policies sometimes come from unusual places like Uganda, which banned plastic bags in July of this year because they have become so problematic for the environment.

    Now local and international NGOs are helping Ugandans in a suburb of the capital city of Kampala to collect plastic bags and turn them into items like baskets, handbags, shoes and roofing tiles.