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Global Wind Day 2012 Brings Celebration, Controversy & Contests For Wind Power #GlobalWindDay

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Global Wind Day 2012
Photo Credit: Winner Australia, Oceania, Antarctica (c) EWEA/Chris Wilson

If you didn’t know it already, today, June 15th, 2012 is Global Wind Day where the world is celebrating together wind power which is being transformed on an international level to change the way we look at power. A destination page organized by EWEA (The European Wind Energy Association) and GWEC (Global Wind Energy Council) can be found at www.globalwindday.org.

The designated day for wind turbines & wind power generation is described by the GWD organization as, “Global Wind Day is a worldwide event that occurs annually on 15 June. It is a day for discovering wind, its power and the possibilities it holds to change our world. It is also a day for discovery of the work that has already begun by pioneers around the world. In more than 75 countries around the world, wind farms are in operation, generating energy from a clean and renewable source.”

It’s easy to see the type of participation that is going on this year for this celebration by seeing all the chatter in Social Media on sites like Twitter and Facebook. One green energy website did a rundown of some of the more interesting wind energy tweets centered around hashtags like #GlobalWindDay and #WindEnergy. Global Wind Day’s Facebook page is featuring the winners of a Photo Competition called “Wind in Mind” 2012. The description for the contest is, “For Global Wind Day 2012, EWEA and GWEC have run a photo contest. These are the winners, chosen by a professional jury from over 2300 photos from over 40 countries worldwide. We hope you like them!” We’ve picked out our three favorite of the photos & displayed one above & two below:

Wind Power Celebration 2012
Photo Credit: Winner Asia (c) EWEA/Luca Catalano Gonzaga

Global Winner for Global Wind Day Photo Contest
Photo Credit: Global Winner (c) EWEA/Markus Haslinger

No celebration without a little controversy

The series of pictures chosen as the winners for the photography contest supporting wind power were inspiring and beautiful. However, that didn’t completely take center stage for the celebrations. An event was organized by the Sierra Club in New Jersey to as described on their event page, “get Governor Christie to move offshore wind forward.” The NJ wind power celebration was to include free kites for all kids & everyone else that signed up online. The kite flying took place at 12:00pm Ocean City, NJ time.

A story was done on the anti-kite flying by Grist.org exposing the fact that Americans for Prosperity (AFP) was carting in people by the bus load to the kite flying event. There were six buses paid for and scheduled to cart protesters to the wind power event from Gloucester County, NJ, Elmer, NJ, AFP Headquarters, Wyckoff, NJ, Parsippany-Troy Hills, NJ and Sparta, New Jersey. If protesters couldn’t make a bus together they were instructed to just show up at 10th Street Beach or Asbury Park to join in.

The reason the AFP wants to protest an innocent event is stated on their Press Release titled, “AFP Plans “Global Wind Day” Counter-Protests – Friday, June 15.” A lot of organizations and people have been tying the protesting directly to the Koch Brothers since they are heavy financial supporters of the AFP. The point of the protest is described as, “AFP will be going toe to toe with the environmental extremists to combat their radical agenda and tell the truth about the costs of offshore wind! You’ll remember that right here in New Jersey; the State has already authorized a $100 MILLION taxpayer subsidy to install windmills off our coast. This scheme would be a disaster for the state, raising rates and killing jobs!”

It seems the fan fair of the protests were not enough on the ground however as the @Sierra_Club tweeted out that an antiwind banner flew over the kids flying kites for Global Wind Day on the beach.

Antiwind Banner by Koch Brothers

Celebrations inspires Power of Wind Contests for Students

Power of Wind ContestIt’s not all controversy and protests however with organizations like CanWEA (Canadian Wind Energy Association) getting in on the fun by offering contests for students that write blogs on the subject of wind energy. In a press announcement CanWEA revealed their contest as, “CanWEA is inviting students entering post-secondary education to submit a 300-word blog on the subject of wind energy. Students can write about what wind energy means to them and why they think it should be a part of our future energy mix.”

There are prizes for students writing about Wind Energy and placing with theirs posts. Post-secondary studies 1st prize will be awarded $2,000 and also the opportunity to climb a wind turbine in Toronto, Canada. The second and third prizes will be $500 for second place and $250 for third place. Entries are accepted starting on Global Wind Day, June 15th, 2012 all the way until September 15th, 2012. The terms and conditions of the wind turbine energy contest can be found at the Friends of Wind site.

Wind Energy Videos for Global Wind Day in 2012

I love wind energy because
Photo Credit: I love wind energy because… YouTube Video

A few videos have been highlighted on this day that is important to many in the wind energy industry. One of the videos is called, “I love wind energy because…” was created by EWEA and is listed as one of their videos on their YouTube channel EWEAvideos. The song featured in this video was Paradise by Noa Moon. So far this video has received around 3,766 views and 35 likes and seems to be a hit for the wind energy celebration. You can watch the video below at the bottom of this article.

Another video that has been referred to and touted a lot on the 2012 celebration of Global Wind Day was a video that was shared on July 2nd, 2007. The video is titled, “epuron – the power of wind” and was awarded a golden Lion under the Film Category in the 54th Edition of the Cannes International Advertising Awards.

Enjoy both videos below, let us know if there are others you think symbolize this day for the wind energy industry.

I love wind energy because…

Why do we love wind energy? Lots of reasons! See a few of them here in this video, produced especially for Global Wind Day 2012. To find out more about Global Wind Day this year, go to http://www.globalwindday.org
Song by Noa Moon – “Paradise”
Produced by www.devisu.com © EWEA

Epuron – The Power of Wind

tvc that won a gold lion under the film category in the 54th edition of the cannes international advertising awards.
CREDITS:
Country: GERMANY
Advertising Agency: NORDPOL+ HAMBURG
Country: GERMANY
Creative Director: Lars Ruehmann
Art Director: Bjoern Ruehmann/Joakim Reveman/Matthew Branning
Production Company, City: PARANOID PROJECTS, Paris
Country: FRANCE
2nd Production Company, City: PARANOID US, Los Angeles
Country: USA
Director: The Vikings

InfoPower celebrates Global Wind Day – InfoPower celebra el Día Mundial del Viento

InfoPower celebro el Día Mundial del Viento realizando un divertido y didáctico taller eólico con alumn@s de 2º de Primaria del CEIP Federico García Lorca de Leganés (Madrid, España). ¡Esperamos que os guste el video y feliz día del viento!

InfoPower celebrates the World Wind Day with an enjoyable and educational workshop about wind with Primary School students from Leganés’ (Madrid, Spain) Federico García Lorca center. We hope you like the video and happy World Wind Day!

Environmentalist. Consumer Tech Journalist. Science Explorer. And, a dreamer. I've been contributing informative news content since 2010. Follow me on all socials!

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  1. Mike Barnard

    June 16, 2012 at 9:52 am

    Mr. Heller has obviously swallowed the anti-wind misinformation campaign hook, line and sinker.

    Debunking the major points:
    1. 17 major reviews worldwide, analysing all available literature and studies — and there are a lot of them — concluded that wind turbines don’t cause health problems. They agreed that a small number of people very close to them find the noise annoying. Minor environmental noise problems can be mitigated by closing windows, using iPhone white noise apps and a bunch of other mechanisms used by people in urban and rural areas to deal with unwanted noise.
    http://www.quora.com/Wind-Power/What-might-cause-people-who-live-near-wind-turbines-to-get-sick/answer/Mike-Barnard

    2. Ironically, infrasound from beaches at 75 meters is greater than infrasound from wind turbines. Humans evolved with infrasound, and wind turbines don’t generate enough of it to hear or feel, and certainly not enough to cause any damage to anything.
    http://www.quora.com/Wind-Power/Is-the-infrasound-emitted-by-wind-turbines-harmful-to-humans-or-animals/answer/Mike-Barnard

    3. Four major, statistically valid studies covering 41,000 property transactions near wind farms in the US and UK show no damage to property values and two of them actually show positive effects.
    http://www.quora.com/Wind-Power/Do-wind-turbines-reduce-the-value-of-nearby-properties/answer/Mike-Barnard

    4. Wind turbines are displacing fossil fuel generation and reducing CO2e world-wide. In Ontario wind energy has contributed to coal going from 20% of the generating mix to 3% of the mix, with complete shutdown in 2014. This has resulted in a reduction of 30 Mtonnes of CO2e or two-thirds of the previous amount from electrical generation. Texas numbers show a direct correlation between wind energy contribution and reduction in CO2e. Forbes and others are relying on the deeply flaw Bentek reports on wind energy, reports produced by a natural gas analysis company whose CEO heads two fossil fuel lobbying organizations.
    http://www.quora.com/Wind-Power/Is-the-Bentek-report-The-Wind-Power-Paradox-accurate-in-stating-that-CO2-emission-reductions-due-to-wind-energy-are-non-existent-or-extremely-expensive/answer/Mike-Barnard

    5. As for intermittency, every grid manager knows that every source of electricity is intermittent, and keeps massive backup storage on hot standby in case one of their major generating plants goes offline unexpectedly due to plant or transmission line failure. Wind is actually more predictably intermittent and causes no problems for grids and backup.
    http://www.quora.com/Wind-Power/The-wind-doesn’t-blow-all-the-time-Doesn’t-this-make-wind-power-ineffective/answer/Mike-Barnard
    http://www.quora.com/Wind-Power/How-much-backup-generation-or-storage-does-a-wind-farm-require-and-how-does-that-compare-to-conventional-generation/answer/Mike-Barnard

    6. As for subsidies for wind, let’s talk about the long-running and massive subsidies that still exist for fossil fuels, nuclear and hydro.
    http://www.quora.com/Clean-Energy/Renewable-Energy-What-are-the-ways-beyond-government-subsidies-that-can-help-in-making-renewable-energy-technologies-more-competitive/answer/Mike-Barnard

    As for the sources referenced by Mr. Heller, they include an AM radio talk show host and a retired Dutch guy who writes unpeer-reviewed analyses critical of wind that contradict the hundreds and thousands of peer-reviewed works that say the opposite: that wind energy is an economic and reliable source of electricity that reduces CO2e emissions and has the lowest negative externalities of any source of generation.

  2. Bill Heller

    June 15, 2012 at 3:58 pm

    I was at the Asbury Park, NJ Global Wind Day event. I live in Union Beach…I am a pro musician…not a Koch Brothers employee…where we are fighting to prevent our local sewer plant from erecting a 38-story noisy Industrial Wind Turbine just over a thousand feet from a densely populated neighborhood. The world over, people who live close to these monstrosities have serious complaints about a slew of symptoms brought on by the repetitive low frequency and subsonic noise from IWTs. Plus, the industrial intrusion of IWTs kills home values, and in the US, unlike places like Denmark, there is no compensation to home owners.
    http://www.ens.dk/en-us/supply/renewable-energy/windpower/onshore-wind-power/loss-of-value-to-real-property/sider/forside.aspx
    But the worst of it is that INDUSTRIAL WIND TURBINES DO NOT PROVIDE CLEAN ENERGY and do practically nothing to mitigate climate change! Not one coal or gas plant the world over has been decommissioned because of IWTs…and eliminating our dependence on fossil fuels is their stated purpose. To quote an expert: “Because wind blows intermittently, electric utilities must either keep their conventional power plants running all the time to make sure the lights don’t go dark, or continually ramp up and down the output from conventional coal-or gas-fired generators (called “cycling”). But coal-fired and gas-fired generators are designed to run continuously, and if they don’t, fuel consumption and emissions generally increase.” This is happening worldwide, and in places like Colorado and Texas where CO2 and power plant pollution have increased since installing wind farms:
    http://www.forbes.com/2011/07/19/wind-energy-carbon.html http://www.denverpost.com/headlines/ci_15081808
    http://www.clepair.net/IerlandUdo.html
    http://www.thespec.com/news/ontario/article/610422–cost-of-green-energy-40-higher-than-government-estimates
    http://articles.baltimoresun.com/2011-07-25/news/bs-ed-wind-farms-20110725_1_wind-turbine-wind-farm-wind-power
    The wind industry is built on crony capitalism, it is the only way it can exist. Taxpayer money builds them and power companies are mandated to buy wind generated power at much higher rates than conventionally produced power. There is no true benefit, except to wind power companies, politicians and lobbyists. If Renewable Energy Credits were only issued for carbon reduced instead of megawatts produced, there would be no wind turbines as they don’t significantly reduce carbon.

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Lifestyle

UK DOH Teams Up With Social Media Companies To Battle Eating Disorders

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Photo: S O C I A L . C U T | Unsplash.com

The United Kingdom’s Department of Health Secretary Matt Hancock challenged social media companies to improve upon their practices when it comes to handling eating disorders like bulimia and anorexia.

The Health Secretary hosted a round table discussion with the social media giants to lessen instances of influencing vulnerable teens into self-harm. Content that encourages self-harm, eating disorders and misinformation leads to the increase of reported cases.

“Today the meeting was called to be about the promotion of self-harm and suicide material, but we also spoke about tackling eating disorders and some anti-vaccination messages which are so important to tackle to ensure they do not get prevalence online,” Hancock says to the reporters.

Hancock is pleased that the social media companies agree and started discussing actions that each would take.

“I feel the tech companies are starting to get the message, they’re starting to take action – but there’s much more to do.”

Instagram has affirmed its commitment to the challenge. The photo-sharing app has announced that it will remove posts that promote eating disorders.

Aside from removing harmful content, Instagram and other tech companies involved also agreed to pay a reward for anyone who will help them remove content that encourages suicidal behavior.

Instagram has been facing pressure on improving its content since the suicide case of 14-year-old Molly Russell. Ian Russell, the victim’s father, has come out and shared that Molly’s Instagram account was following self-harm accounts. The accounts were filled with photos related to depression.

In April, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport created a consultation series for the Online Harms White Paper. The UK government spearheaded consultations to identify the best measures to keep UK users safe online.

In the white paper, the government has acknowledged that online platforms can be used to affect one’s mental health and well-being. It lists that one of the problems are social media algorithms that do not showcase other points of view.

For example, if a user follows an account that promotes body-shaming, the social media platform’s algorithm will suggest the user follow similar accounts. This creates an unhealthy balance of the information received by the user.

The white paper also acknowledges the use of social media platforms to bully, harass, or intimidate other users. It also recognizes that these instances usually target public figures like celebrities.

Eating Disorder in Social Media

A BBC report launched an investigation on how teens are interacting in social media platforms such as Instagram. The report detailed the story of Jodie-Leigh Neil, a teen battling anorexia.

Neil says, ” I spent hours and hours going through this content and this material, and that then added to the more competitive side of anorexia.”

Neil shared that even if Instagram did not cause her anorexia, it exacerbated it. She shares that other user’s posts about their lowest weights with pictures that show skin and bones. Those posts triggered Neil’s anorexia encouraged her only to eat 20 calories per day.

After battling anorexia for three years, Neil continues to be on Instagram. In this case, she has now dedicated her account in spreading the positive message about eating. She highlights the positive journey she’s had in overcoming her eating disorder.

According to BBC, there’s an increase of more than 130% of teens suffering from eating disorders since 2011 based on National Health Services data.

Detox Teas and Promotions from Celebrities

One of the highly criticized uses of social media platforms are the ads of celebrities promoting products. Millions of followers consume content that is made to benefit businesses. One business that many claims to promote an unhealthy lifestyle is detox teas.

Detox teas are laxatives that help in one’s weight loss journey. Celebrities like the Kardashians, Amber Rose, Cardi B, and other influencers have been seen promoting detox teas, crediting the product for their bodies.

In 2018, the Kardashian-Jenner sisters were criticized for posting Instagram stories that are encouraging anorexia. In the story, Kim is showered with praise by sisters Khloe Kardashian and Kendall Jenner for being skinny.

In the short video, Jenner said “No, like I’m really concerned, I don’t think you’re eating. Like, you look so skinny.” However, the model continued to compliment Kardashian on how good she looks despite being concerned about her eating habits.

The content has upset many fans as it seems that the sisters were encouraging Kim to continue “not eating” because she “looks so skinny.”

Jameela Jamil, an actress, and body positivity advocate slammed celebrities who promote the detox teas and unhealthy weight loss options.

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Lifestyle

This Designer Came Up With A Stylish Facial Recognition Shield

The problem is: it’s not for sale.

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Photo: NOMA Website

In May, a man is walking along the streets of London with his green jacket when he noticed a van that he thought to be a police surveillance vehicle. While he walked passed the car, he covered his face with his hoodie in fear that there might be some sort of facial recognition system around. Much to his surprise, he was stopped by the UK police and fined him more than a hundred pounds for “disorderly behavior.”

Facial recognition systems are everywhere. It is in your car to automatically unlock it without a key. It is in your smartphones and smart homes. It is even in airports to help you board your flights without hassle. The reality with facial recognition is that it becomes a staple technology in many aspects of human life that it becomes almost impossible to get away from.

Thankfully, Ewa Nowak, a graduate from the design department at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw thought of an ingenious and very stylish way to shield your face from the gawking eyes of facial recognition cameras. He has created a jewelry design that can trick facial recognition systems and hide key facial features to prevent them from identifying someone.

“I was just amazed how they could identify our gender, age, and mood,” Nowak explains her curiosity towards securing oneself from unauthorized and unconsented facial recognition. “But also how the development is constantly leveling up. I was surprised about how even if we have our face partially covered, how [face recognition] can still follow us and distinguish us.”

Nowak is currently co-founding a design and arts venture called NOMA together with another artist Jarosław Markowitz.

According to Nowak, she was inspired by the release of light-up glasses that was developed by Japan’s National Institute of Informatics to fight facial recognition systems. Because of her creativity, she developed a device, or more like face jewelry. Her design included two brass circles that hang down from the cheekbones and an additional long piece of brass that stretches up to the forehead. A long wire can be used to attach the entire piece into your head, similar to how glasses work.

Photo: Ewa Nowak via FastCompany

Nowak has previously worked with other designs too, but this specific jewelry design is the first that worked and has actually prevented a facial recognition system from recognizing her facial features.

Mazda Design Award granted her the trophy at the recently concluded Łódź Design Festival for her ingenious way of preventing facial recognition from identifying someone.

“I worked on the [face jewelry] for two or three months, and then it waited,” Nowak says. “The reason I showed in Łódź is that there was a competition. I entered, and the project won. It’s the easiest way to get displayed. There are so many projects stuck at the university level. When we were studying, a lot of people asked how to show their work to people and share ideas. Education and business are disconnected from art.”

There is one big problem, though. Because Nowak considers the design more as a conceptual work of art rather than a product, the Polish artist said that she has no plans of mass-producing it; especially that the product has to be molded to someone’s face and to be perfectly fitted in order to work.

While it is unfortunate that Nowak’s design is not much of a help to people; apparently, it opens a wide door for designers and technology experts to develop their own version of a facial recognition shield.

Photo: Ewa Nowak via FastCompany

Her design can also serve as baseline design for innovations in the area of facial recognition shielding and could inspire younger people to develop their own.

With the growing popularity of facial recognition, a market for it it is very much open, and that serves as a strong incentive for businesses and intellectuals alike to produce something that could help people protect themselves from the privacy-violating facial recognition.

The unregulated technology that is facial recognition has continued to steer public dialogue on the protection of people’s privacy. Human rights advocate that the growing prevalence of the systems makes legislation and regulation lag from their intended purposes. They hope that with innovators like Nowak, the world will see a balance in the benefits of facial recognition and people’s privacy.

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Health

The Newest Sea Creatures-Inspired Tea Bags Strengthen Japanese Tea Tradition

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In Japanese culture, tea is more than just a drink. The tea ceremony, also known as “Way of Tea,” has been an essential part of Japan’s culture for centuries. This high-valued celebration is matched with a performance that mirrors grace and beauty, accompanied by a ritual activity that strengthens the familial relationship.

For centuries, the country relies on its tea business — not just to adhere to its venerable tradition — but because drinking tea has been a part of Japanese daily routine. As companies continue to venture in tea business, creative approaches on how to spice up one’s tea packaging are also booming. One great example is the recent innovation of the Japanese company known as “Ocean Teabag” — which takes the challenge of creating a different and unique approach to tea bags.

For tea lovers, the new design becomes a “breath of fresh air” since traditional tea bags have not changed for many years. The company decides to team up with an oddity shop and a local bookstore called “Village Vanguard” to produce the new animal-themed teabags that can alter people’s mood by just looking at the cute design.

Ocean Teabag was created by Takahashi Shota, who launched the first-ever product with a dolphin design in 2015. It became the talk of the town, which transpired Shota to create another set of animals to the product line. The business gained orders from outside the country — making Ocean Tea Bag be the first and only company to introduce unique designs to teabags.

Source: ocean-teabag

The custom of drinking tea, mainly for medicinal purposes, can now be associated with pleasurable reasons. From drinking the most boring bland tea comes to the new sea creature-inspired teabags. The design elevates the daily tea ritual into a zoological adventure; ranging from giant squids, otters, to red Pandas and cephalopods. Layers, folds, and perforations create the details of each creature’s body, while the outside packaging mirrors with that of the inside. So, customers will know through the wrapping what animals to choose for their tea sessions.

Source: ocean-teabag

The tea bags can be bought online or through personal transactions at a sum of 1,820 yen or $16. These tea bags once dipped, add life to your daily tea routines, simply because of the delicate folds, which look like an animal is swimming in your tea.

Source: ocean-teabag

Tea was initially valued as medicine because of its health benefits and was only available to rich people like the noblemen and emperors. The first documented evidence of tea session in Japan dates back to the 9th century when it was brought by the Buddhist monks after studying the tea culture in China.

The monks personally served “Sencha,” an unground Japanese green tea, to the famous Emperor Saga. Japanese nobles, later on, practice it, and through an imperial order in the year 816. And since then, tea plantations had become widespread in different regions of Japan.

Until today, tea becomes a daily beverage of both the affluent class and the ordinary people. It has become a symbol of a growing relationship among Japanese and their families, even nobles and commoners.

Aside from drinking tea as a way to bond and relax, one reason for the emerging tea businesses is the proven benefits of tea in our bodies. According to a study conducted by a group of researchers from Ohio State University in Colombus, tea, mainly green tea, has shown to help fight obesity and inflammation. The findings indicated that the said tea encourages the growth of good gut bacteria which lowers the risk of obesity.

However, today, Japan faces one of the pressing issues with regards to its tea farming. The Japanese Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry in 2016 indicated that the area used for tea farming declined from 46200 hectares to 43100.

Although Japan is the eight largest tea producer in the world, tea farming itself, unfortunately, decreased in the past years. One reason is the continued support of local government to private companies which build establishment and other infrastructures in areas where tea farming is mostly found.

With this, the country relies mostly on tea imports from other countries, including China. Ocean Tea Bag supports local tea producers and hopes that its newest sea creature-inspired tea bags will continue the country’s tea tradition and strengthen the bond between Japan and its people.

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