Paris Planning Total Combustion Engine Ban by 2030

Several global cities like Paris are planning a 100% ban on combustion engines within their city limits, favoring instead electric trains, busses and bicycles. These cities are rising to a stature that exceeds their national domicile.  TN Editor

Authorities in Paris plan to ban combustion engine cars by 2030, including those fueled by both diesel and gasoline.

The move marks an acceleration in plans to electric vehicles in a city often obliged to impose temporary bans due to surges in particle pollution in the air.

Paris City Hall said in a statement that France had already set a target date of 2040 for an end to cars dependent on fossil fuels and that this required speedier phase-outs in large cities.

“This is about planning for the long term with a strategy that will reduce greenhouse gases,” said Christophe Najdovski, an official responsible for transport policy at the office of Mayor Anne Hidalgo. “Transport is one of the main greenhouse gas producers so we are planning an exit from combustion engine vehicles, or fossil-energy vehicles, by 2030,” he told France Info radio.

The French capital had already been eyeing an end to diesel cars in the city by the time it hosts the summer Olympics in 2024.

Paris City Hall is already under attack over the establishment of no-car zones, car-free days and fines for drivers who enter the city in cars that are more than 20 years old. It said it was not using the word “ban” but rather introducing a feasible deadline by which combustion-engine cars would be phased out.

There are about 32 million household cars in France, where the population is about 66 million, according to 2016 data from the Argus, an automobile industry publication.

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U.S. State Department Says Goodbye To UNESCO, Withdraws Membership

It is unclear if this will have any impact on current UN’s policies being implemented in the US by a myriad of heavily-funded NGOs such as ICLEI and the US Conference of Mayors. The United Nations has already penetrated the US down to the smallest community.  TN Editor

The United States plans to withdraw from UNESCO, citing financial reasons, as well as what it said was an anti-Israel bias at the U.N.’s educational, cultural and science organization.

The decision to withdraw from UNESCO, which the United States helped found, was announced Thursday morning by the State Department, which said the United States would remain involved as a nonmember observer. It will take effect at the end of 2018.

It marks yet another decision by the United States to distance itself from some parts of the international community.

Some of the United States’s closest allies are among UNESCO’s 195 members. France’s U.N. ambassador, Francois Delattre, had urged the United States to remain in UNESCO this week, saying the United States “must stay committed to world affairs.”

UNESCO was established after World War II to help promote the free flow of information. It is perhaps best known for the World Heritage program, which helps preserve cultural sites of import around the globe.

But the United States has at times had an ambivalent relationship with the Paris-based organization. The government stopped paying its dues in 2011 after UNESCO voted to include the Palestinian Authority as a member.

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Humanoid Robot ‘Sophia’ Debuts At UN To Share Views On AI

Sophia the AI robot touts the Technocrat mantra that technology and AI is the answer to all of the UN’s problems, like eradicating hunger, providing jobs, etc. It was noted that UN members gave Sophia a ‘ rapturous applause’.  TN Editor

A humanoid robot known as Sophia made a surprise appearance at a United Nations event yesterday, drawing rapturous applause from attendees.

Sophia has become something of a media sensation over the past year, having given numerous TV interviews, performed in concert, and even graced the cover of one of the top fashion magazines.

During the United Nations meeting on artificial intelligence and sustainable development, she engaged in a brief discussion with UN Deputy Secretary-General, Amina J. Mohammed on how to help people in parts of the world who have no access to the Internet or electricity.

“The future is already here. It’s just not very evenly distributed […],” said Sophia, quoting renowned science fiction writer William Gibson.

“If we are smarter and focused on win-win type of results, AI [artificial intelligence] could help proficiently distribute the world’s existing resources like food and energy.”

Ms Mohammed had opened the meeting by warning, despite the potential for technology to drive sustainable development, it needs to be managed well to avoid exacerbating existing inequalities.

“The influence of technology on our societies should be determined by the actions of us, humans, not by machines,” she said. “Technology is here for us to explore and use for the benefit of all.”

Sophia, made by Hanson Robotics, uses artificial intelligence to read people’s emotional responses and react to how they talk and act.

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