Bloomberg: How Apple Scaled Back Its Titanic Plan to Take on Detroit
Apple Inc. has drastically scaled back its automotive ambitions, leading to hundreds of job cuts and a new direction that, for now, no longer includes building its own car, according to people familiar with the project.
Hundreds of members of the car team, which comprises about 1,000 people, have been reassigned, let go, or have left of their own volition in recent months, the people said, asking not to be identified because the moves aren’t public.
New leadership of the initiative, known internally as Project Titan, has refocused on developing an autonomous driving system that gives Apple flexibility to either partner with existing carmakers, or return to designing its own vehicle in the future, the people also said. Apple has kept staff numbers in the team steady by hiring people to help with the new focus, according to another person.
International Business Times: Leaked Emails Show Hillary Told Climate Change Activists To ‘Get a Life’
At a meeting with environmentalists last year in which they probed Democratic U.S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton on renouncing fossil fuels, the former secretary of state dismissed the activists saying they should “get a life.” The revelation came about when WikiLeaks dumped more emails from the accounts of Clinton aide John Podesta on Saturday.
A section of Clinton’s meeting with the building trades union in September last year was made public Saturday where she said she defended natural gas and fracking “under the right circumstances.” The meeting occurred at a time when she was fighting a challenge from Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.
“Bernie Sanders is getting lots of support from the most radical environmentalists because he’s out there every day bashing the Keystone pipeline. And, you know, I’m not into it for that,” Clinton said at the meeting, according to transcripts. “My view is, I want to defend natural gas. I want to defend repairing and building the pipelines we need to fuel our economy. I want to defend fracking under the right circumstances.”
MIT Technology Review: Your Driverless Ride Is Arriving
Most carmakers, notably Tesla Motors, Audi, Mercedes-Benz, Volvo and General Motors, and even a few big tech companies including Google and (reportedly) Apple, are testing self-driving vehicles. Tesla cars drive themselves under many circumstances (although the company warns drivers to use the system only on highways and asks them to pay attention and keep their hands on the steering wheel).
But despite its formidable competition, Uber might have the best opportunity to commercialize the technology quickly. Unlike Ford or GM, it can limit automation to the routes it thinks driverless cars can handle at first. And in contrast to Google or Apple, it already has a vast network of taxis that it can make gradually more automated over time.
Climate Central: U.S. Senate Could Block Landmark HFC Climate Treaty
The jubilation and relief that flowed from United Nations climate talks in Rwanda over the weekend may be short-lived in the U.S., where legal experts say the agreement risks being blocked by Republican senators.
Weary U.N. diplomats finalized a deal Saturday to phase out the use of most HFCs, which are chemicals used in refrigerators and air conditioners and by other industries. The agreement was designed to accelerate a shift to safer substitutes for some of the world’s fastest-growing and most polluting greenhouse gases.
“This is different from Paris, in that it requires ratification -- and that’s concerning to me,” said Michael Wara, and expert on energy and environmental law at Stanford. “This is going to require getting Republicans to vote for it.”
Washington Post: The U.S. Government Just Made Its Biggest Clean Energy Purchase Ever
On Friday in Maricopa County, Ariz., the U.S. government will hit a clean energy milestone: what officials are calling the largest procurement ever of renewable energy by the federal government, in this case from a desert solar array.
The new 150-megawatt, or million-watt, Mesquite 3 solar array is located in Arizona, but the electricity it generates will be sent to California’s electric grid and will power roughly one-third of the electricity needs of 14 naval installations in the state, including San Diego’s naval base and the Marines’ Twentynine Palms and Camp Pendleton.
“Today we’re going to throw a switch and start getting those electrons flowing to our 14 bases,” said Dennis McGinn, the assistant secretary of the Navy for energy, installations and environment, who spoke from Arizona where he was on site for the opening ceremony for the plant.