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The relationship between excessive car traffic and infant health: Does Living Along a Busy Highway Increase Premature Births?
The gist of this article is that there is a link between car emissions and infant health. This link is evidenced by the fact that premature birth rates in areas near highways have been shown to fall after conventional tolling booths are replaced by modern tolling technology that doesn’t require cars to come to a stop in order to pay.
Excerpt – “Among families living within 2 kilometers of expressway toll booths premature births fell by between 6.7 percent and 9.2 per-cent after the installation of E-Z Pass tolling systems. The incidence of low birth weight fell by between 8.5 percent and 11.3 percent.”
Excerpt – “Led by Professor of Aquaculture Rocky De Nys, researchers found an addition of less than 2 percent dried seaweed to a cow’s diet can reduce methane emissions by 99 percent.”
A few highlights from one of my favorite books, The Inevitable, by Kevin Kelly.
- “The Fortune 500 company General Electric was concerned that its own engineers could not keep up with the rapid pace of invention around them, so it launched the platform Quirky. Anyone could submit online an idea for a great new GE product. Once a week, the GE staff voted on the best idea that week and would set to work making it real. If an idea became a product, it would earn money for the idea maker. To date GE has launched over 400 new products from this crowdsourced method.”
- “Several decades ago international banks discovered they had better repayment rates when they lent small amounts to the poor than when they lent big amounts to rich state governments. It was safer to lend money to the peasants in Bolivia than to the government of Bolivia.
- …Since Kiva’s (A microfinance company) launch in 2005, over 2 million people have lent more than $725 million in microfinance loans via its sharing platform. The payback rate is about 99 percent. That is a strong encouragement to lend again.”
–Great podcast episode – Joe Rogan interviews Johann Hari:
- A mind blowing discussion about the addiction and the war on drugs. Although Joe Rogan posts all his podcast episodes on youtube, I recommend listening to them using the podcast app Overcast.
- The guest, Johann Hari, has written extensively on the topics of depression and addiction. In the interview, he discusses many of the ideas covered in his books, particularly his newest one: Chasing the Scream. When listening to this interview, I was particularly impressed by the vast number of tangible anecdotes Hari used to back up his arguments. Unlike the many scholars who seem limited to the world of broad theory, Hari is very able to articulate the stats and stories.