Portugal Plans the First "City with a Brain"

A new city, planned for 2015, will be riddled with sensors so it can make smart decisions about how it uses water, energy, and other resources.

What do you get when you design a city from the ground up so that all of its systems—water, energy, waste, and climate control—gather and share information? The first "city with a brain"

On the outskirts of Paredes, in northern Portugal, a start-up called LivingPlanIT, which has its roots in the tech industry, is working on a 150,000-person city that would use information technology in unprecedented new ways.

Every building in the city will have sensors that monitor occupancy, temperature, and energy use. That information, along with streams of data from solar and wind power generators and other city systems, will be fed into a central "nervous system" that can change how buildings are heated or powered based on real-time information.

LivingPlanIT is aiming for an ambitious completion date: 2015. But it has the support of the local government, which will help considerably. The Harvard Business Review also applauds the LivingPlanIT model (the companies supplying the technology for the city will be its first occupants). Our only reservation? The city's name: PlanIT Valley.

via International Monetary Fund / Flickr and Streetsblog Denver / Flickr

Seventeen-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg made a dramatic speech Tuesday at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

In her address, she called for a public and private sector divestment from fossil fuel companies

"Immediately end all fossil fuel subsidies and immediately and completely divest from fossil fuels. We don't want these things done by 2050, or 2030 or even 2021 — we want this done now," she said.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin mocked the teenager on Thursday during a press briefing in Davos.

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Researchers at Barts and University College London looked at 138 first-time marathon runners between the ages of 21 and 69. "We wanted to look at novice athletes. We didn't include people who said they ran for more than two hours a week," Dr. Charlotte Manisty, the study's senior author and cardiologist at University College London, said per CNN.

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