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Zero emissions: Amsterdam is boldly getting rid of diesel and gas vehicles.

These are the decisive moves the planet needs more of.

BAS CZERWINSKI/AFP/Getty Images

As the importance of living on a cleaner planet becomes pressing, more cities are taking it upon themselves to enact green initiatives. However, a new plan from the City of Amsterdam is going to be a sucker punch to a major source of pollution. Amsterdam announced plans to phase out all gas and diesel vehicles by 2030. They will be replaced with emissions-free alternatives, such as electric and hydrogen cars. Electric cars aren’t the car of the future anymore. They’re the car of now.


The Netherlands is already one of the most bicycle-friendly countries in the world. Nearly 30% of Dutch commuters travel by bike. However, the Netherland’s air pollution is higher than European standards permit. Most of the pollution is produced by the country’s two largest cities, Amsterdam and Rotterdam, so it makes it all the more pressing for Amsterdam to go green.

The importance of improving air quality has become imperative. "Pollution often is a silent killer and is one of the greatest health hazards in Amsterdam," Amsterdam Traffic Councillor Sharon Dijksma said. The current levels of nitrogen dioxide and particle matter can cause repertory illnesses, as well as shorten life expectancy by more than a year. It turns out walking to work is good for your health in more ways than one.

Amsterdam laid out it’s Clean Air Action plan, which begins with a ban on diesel vehicles more than 15-years-old by 2020. Over the next ten years, Amsterdam will expand which vehicles are on the list until all gas and diesel vehicles are banned. By 20222, the city seeks to do away with public buses and coaches that emit exhaust, and in 2015, exhaust-emitting boats and mopeds will be banned. The city will also offer subsidies and special parking permits in order to encourage its citizens to switch to electric or hydrogen cars. Additionally, Amsterdam will amp up the number of electric charging stations from 3,000 to 16,000 to 23,000 by 2025.

Amsterdam’s Clean Air Action plan doesn’t just have the potential to clean up Amsterdam. It also has the potential to clean up other cities by leading by example. Already, Brussels is looking to follow suit and do away with gas and vehicles.

The changes coming to Amsterdam are major, and we’re excited to see how they play out. Hopefully, the citizens of Amsterdam will be able to breathe easy come 2030!

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via The Howard Stern Show / YouTube

Former Secretary of State, first lady, and winner of the popular vote in the 2016 presidential election, Hillary Clinton, sat own for an epic, two-and-a--half hour interview with Howard Stern on his SiriusXM show Wednesday.

She was there to promote "The Book of Gutsy Women," a book about heroic women co-written with her daughter, Chelsea Clinton.

In the far-reaching conversation, Clinton and the self-proclaimed "King of All Media" and, without a doubt, the best interviewer in America discussed everything from Donald Trump's inauguration to her sexuality.

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Politics
Pixabay

Offering parental leave for new fathers could help close the gender gap, removing the unfair "motherhood penalty" women receive for taking time off after giving birth. However, a new study finds that parental leave also has a pay gap. Men are less likely to take time off, however, when they do, they're more likely to get paid for it.

A survey of 2,966 men and women conducted by New America found that men are more likely to receive paid parental leave. Over half (52%) of fathers had fully paid parental leave, and 14% of fathers had partially paid parental leave. In comparison, 33% of mothers had fully paid parental leave and 19% had partially paid parental leave.

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Bans on plastic bags and straws can only go so far. Using disposable products, like grabbing a plastic fork when you're on the go, can be incredibly convenient. But these items also contribute to our growing plastic problem.

Fortunately, you can cut down on the amount of waste you produce by cutting down on disposable products. And even more fortunately, there are sustainable (and cute) replacements that won't damage the environment.

Coconut bowls


Cocostation

Who says sustainable can't also be stylish? These cute coconut bowls were handmade using reclaimed coconuts, making each piece one of a kind. Not only are they organic and biodegradable, but they're also durable, in case your dinner parties tend to get out of hand. The matching ebony wood spoons were polished with the same coconut oil as the bowls.

Cocostation Set of 2 Vietnamese Coconut Bowls and Spoons, $14.99; at Amazon

Solar powered phone charger

Dizaul

Why spend time looking around for an outlet when you can just harness the power of the sun? This solar powered phone charger will make sure your phone never dies as long as you can bask in the sun's rays. As an added bonus, this charger was made using eco-friendly silicone rubber. It's win-win all around.

Dizaul Solar Charger, 5000mAh Portable Solar Power Bank, $19.95; at Amazon, $19.95; at Amazon

Herb garden kit

Planter Pro

Put some green in your life with this herb planter. The kit comes with everything you need to get a garden growing, including a moisture meter that helps you determine if your herbs are getting the right amount of food to flourish. All the seeds included are certified to be non-GMO and non-hybrids, meaning you can have fresh, organic herbs right at your fingertips.

Planter Pro's Herb Garden Cedar Planter, $39.00; at Amazonedar Planter, $39.00; at Amazon

Reusable Keurig cups

K & J

Keurig cups are convenient, but they also create a ton of plastic waste. These Keurig-compatible plastic cups are an easy way to cut down on the amount of trash you create without cutting down on your caffeine. Additionally, you won't have to keep on buying K Cups, which means you'll be saving money and the environment.

K&J Reusable Filter Cups, $8.95 for a set of 4,; at Amazon

Low-flow shower head

Speakman

Low-flow water fixtures can cut down your water consumption, which saves you money while also saving one of the Earth's resources. This shower head was designed with a lighter flow in mind, which means you'll be able to cut down on water usage without feeling like you're cutting down on your shower.

Speakman Low Flow Shower Head, $14.58; at Amazon

Bamboo safety razor

Zomchi

Instead of throwing away a disposable razor every time you shave, invest in an eco-friendly, reusable one. This unisex shaver isn't just sustainable, it's also sharp-looking, which means it would make a great gift for the holidays.

Zomchi Safety Razor, $16.99; at Amazon

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