Saturday, 4 September 2010

Masochistic Environmentalism

| 1 persons flung their shoes
"We don't need the air-conditioner. Let's just leave the windows open. With the breeze, it's cool enough."

Cool. Yeah, freaking cool. It's 35゜C out there. Jeez.

Never mind if you're soaked in sweat working in the lab. No a/c, please. Global warming, remember? Reduce CO2 emission! Do your part in energy conservation!

Welcome to Japan. This is where people really do care about saving the environment. It's not about saving endangered whales, though. (I doubt anyone misses the dodos.) Japanese environmentalism is all about climate change. After all, no Japanese would want to see the archipelago become the second Atlantis. Which is why the nation is determined to cut CO2 emission by 25%.

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Bike Revolution

| 0 persons flung their shoes
Beijing :: Tricycle and Bike
China is known as the kingdom of bikes. Most streets in Beijing are designated with bicycle lanes. So if you're in Beijing, visiting places on a bike might be a good idea. Beware though, if you're on the busier streets. Chinese drivers can be horrifying. It is not rare to see a car or two driving on the pedestrian lanes!

While a big part of the population now own cars, bicycles of sorts still remain as a popular mode of transportation in Beijing.

There's the tricycle, which is favored by street hawkers selling fruits and ice-creams and cold drinks. Then there's the modified tricycle taxi, which resembles an upgraded Thai tuk-tuk with an armor shield around it. Then, there's the electric bike (a.k.a. "e-bike"), which is so quiet that it takes the unwary pedestrians by surprise.