Floating Cities — Fantasy or the Future?

Trump Hotels Evade Ban on Foreign Payments ; How the Media Launders Fossil Fuel Content ; and More Picks

Floating cities, future, climate change
The author writes, “Floating cities have long seemed like a utopian pipedream based on little more than fantasy. But this week the concept appeared to take a step closer to reality through a UN-backed partnership. UN-Habitat, which works on sustainable urban development, will team up with private firm Oceanix, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and The Explorers Club, a professional society that promotes scientific exploration around the world, to further the idea. As climate change advances at an alarming rate and huge numbers of people cram into city slums, ‘floating cities [are] one of the possible solutions,’ UN-Habitat's executive director, Maimunah Mohd Sharif, says.” Photo credit: Jack Dayton / Wikimedia (CC BY 3.0.)
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Trump Hotels Exempted From Ban on Foreign Payments Under New Stance (Gerry)

From the Guardian: “A narrow Justice Department interpretation of the emoluments clause gives countries leeway to curry favor with the president via commercial deals.”

European Utilities Contemplating Future in Which Oil Has Gone the Way of the Dinosaurs (Chris)

The author writes, “European oil companies have started to address what they worry may one day be an existential threat to their business — the end of a century of oil demand growth in a low carbon world.”

How the Media Launders Fossil Fuel Content Through Branded Content (Chris)

From the Intercept: “The five largest publicly traded oil and gas companies have spent some $1 billion on ‘narrative capture’ and lobbying since the Paris Agreement was struck in 2016, according to a report published this month by Influence Map. That spending includes $195 million on ‘often misleading branding campaigns.’”

Liberty University Scrutinized Over Fuel Contract With Pentagon (DonkeyHotey)

The author writes, “The Defense Department signed a contract to buy jet fuel from Freedom Aviation, which is wholly owned by the university, in May 2017, according to the publication, and has since bought more than $400,000 worth of fuel from the company.”

They Say It’s Bad Now but Republicans Disclosed Private Tax Returns in 2014 (Tom)

The author writes, “Accusing Democrats of having ‘political’ ― as opposed to legitimate oversight ― reasons for wanting to see Trump’s tax returns is the GOP’s main talking point these days. And as talking points go, it’s an awkward one. Republicans themselves used private tax returns for political purposes just a few years ago, and they used the very same law that Democrats are now relying on.”

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