California is kicking its climate change fight into overdrive by passing a bill requiring 100% of its energy to come from carbon-free sources by 2045.
The move represents the latest in the state’s ideological differences with President Donald Trump regarding environmental regulation. While Trump campaigned that he would reinvigorate the nation’s coal industry, this bill will ban all coal-sourced electricity.
California joins Hawaii as the only other state with this same goal.
California reaffirmed its commitment to combatting the effects of climate change Tuesday when lawmakers passed a historic bill mandating that all of the state’s electricity come from carbon-free sources by 2045.
Electricity production accounts for the second-largest share of the country’s greenhouse gas emissions after transportation, which have been heavily linked to global warming. Nearly 68% of electricity in the US came from burning fossil fuels, consisting mainly of coal and natural gas, according to a 2016 study from the Environmental Protection Agency.See the rest of the story at Business Insider
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Elsevier and the International Solar Energy Society are proud to announce the launch of the Renewable Transformation Challenge.
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Green energy supplier Ecotricity has launched the world’s first certified vegan electricity.
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A NASA probe is about to launch on a mission to the sun in the name of protecting the Earth.
On Saturday, the space agency’s Parker Solar Probe is expected to launch to orbit, beginning its long and winding journey that will eventually allow humanity to touch our nearest star for the first time.
The probe is expected to take flight atop a Delta IV Heavy rocket at 3:33 a.m. ET on Saturday, ironically launching to the sun in the dead of night from Cape Canaveral Florida.
If you happen to be awake, you can watch the launch in the window below via NASA TV: Read more…
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The Insider Picks team writes about stuff we think you’ll like. Business Insider has affiliate partnerships, so we get a share of the revenue from your purchase.
Whether you dress purely for function or you have a serious obsession with fashion, you likely own at least a few pairs of jeans. These versatile, comfortable pants should last many, many years — in theory. If you’re not shopping the right brands, you could be left with poorly constructed jeans that don’t feel good or last very long.
Since jeans will never go out of style (at least, we hope they won’t), it’s a good idea to invest in premium quality pairs. If the word “premium” scares you, don’t back away just yet. Nowadays, startups are getting smarter with the way they make and sell top quality jeans.
Sourcing directly from top denim mills, using sustainable and innovative production methods, and employing the design expertise of denim industry veterans, they’re able to offer customers really great jeans for less than $150, and often, less than $100.
Once you’ve tried the denim from these online companies, you won’t be able to go back. The jeans are stylish, incredibly comfortable, and surprisingly affordable.
Mott & Bow
Mott & Bow
The founder of Mott & Bow grew up learning all about jean-making in his family’s denim manufacturing facility in Honduras, where Mott & Bow’s jeans are still manufactured today. Likening the process to fine wine-making, where source matters, the company buys its premium denim from respected mills in Turkey and Italy, then measures and treats it to maximize comfort and style.
We’ve tried its women’s skinny jeans and Mom jeans, as well as the men’s Wooster jeans, and had glowing things to say about their comfortable, flattering fit. But Mott & Bow knows you can’t always get the perfect fit right away, which is why it lets you you add a free try-on pair in the next size up or down to your order. Its jeans range in price from $96 to $128, and you’ll find slim, straight, skinny, and “mom” jeans in a variety of washes.
Everlane has always espoused transparency, telling you exactly where its products are made and how much it costs to make them, from materials and labor to transport. The path to its denim apparel (which attracted a 40,000-person waitlist in 2017) is no different. Its LEED-certified factory in Vietnam recycles 98% of its water and relies on alternative energy sources to make stylish jeans you can feel good about wearing.
The startup is always dropping new styles for men and women, but if you’re not sure where to start, the Slim Fit Jean is a bestseller for men, and the High-Rise Skinny Jean is a favorite among women. Our personal favorite is the Kick Crop Jean, which looked surprisingly good on every member of the team despite our height differences. Every Everlane jean style only costs $68 or $78.
DUER combines fashion and function, so it’s no wonder the brand is a favorite among athletes, outdoor enthusiasts, and commuters. The company was founded by a denim expert who spent 25 years making jeans for Levi’s, Guess, and Lee, and a performance fabric expert who spent 25 years working with technical brands.
Its unique Performance Denim is super stretchy and light, while wicking away moisture and neutralizing odor. These features are optimized for outdoor use, which is why you can find DUER jeans at retailers like REI. The easy-to-wear styles cost $120 to $140.
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Evan Vucci/AP Photo; Steffi Loos/Getty; Lintao Zhang/Getty; Jochen Zick/Getty; Shayanne Gal/Business Insider
President Donald Trump has been on a nearly six-month long tariff spree, kicking off trade wars with several countries.
Trump has placed tariffs on everything from steel to chicken incubators.
Trading partners including China, Canada, the European Union, and Mexico have hit the US with retaliatory tariffs.
Here’s a breakdown of how we got here and what the tariffs mean for the economy.
President Donald Trump declared on March 2 via Twitter: “When a country (USA) is losing many billions of dollars on trade with virtually every country it does business with, trade wars are good, and easy to win.”
The tweet marked the announcement that the US would impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports coming into the country — and the start of a growing trade war.
Since that point, Trump has opened up trade battles on a series of fronts, and the US and other countries around the world have slapped tariffs on $85 billion worth of goods.
Trump has long been a fan of tough action on trade. In the 1980s, the then-real estate mogul railed against the US’s trade deficit and warned of “other countries ripping off the United States.” In a 1990 Playboy interview, Trump was asked about his first action if he ever became president.
“Many things. A toughness of attitude would prevail,” Trump said. “I’d throw a tax on every Mercedes-Benz rolling into this country and on all Japanese products, and we’d have wonderful allies again.”
Given the president’s decades-long history of protectionist statements and direct signals on the campaign trail, the recent spate of trade restrictions should come as no surprise.
So far, Trump has used tariffs as the main weapon in his trade war. A tariff is a tax on a good coming into the US, also known as a duty. These duties are collected by Customs and Border Protection at the good’s port of entry. Once tariffs go into place, importers face the extra fee immediately.
Trump placed tariffs on a wide variety of goods and the moves are starting to make an impact on the US economy, prices, and more. Here’s a breakdown of how Trump’s trade fight is starting to take its toll.
The number of tariffs Trump has enacted or threatened is piling up.
Shayanne Gal/Business Insider
Trump’s hard line on trade kicked off in February, when the administration officially placed tariffs on imports of washing machines and solar energy equipment.
But the protectionist push began in earnest at the start of March, when Trump announced a 25% tariff on imported steel and 10% tariff on imported aluminum. This move triggered widespread pushback from allies, since the tariffs were implemented on national security grounds.
Allies like Canada, the European Union, and Mexico argue that they pose no national security risk to the US and thus should not be slapped with tariffs. Those three countries, along with China and others, have filed a suit against the US with the World Trade Organization arguing the tariffs are illegal.
So far, the enacted tariffs haven’t hit a large percentage of goods with major trading partners, but that could change in a hurry.
Jenny Cheng/Business Insider
China is the biggest target for Trump so far, with 11.7% of the total goods going between the two countries subject to tariffs.
Trump has also threatened to hit another $400 billion worth of Chinese goods with tariffs due to their retaliation. China accused the president of starting the “largest trade war in economic history.” While that claim may be a slight exaggeration now, it may come true in time.
The fight with Canada is the second-largest front in the trade battle, with 4.5% of total trade with the US subject to tariffs. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has called the tariffs “insulting.”
Just 1.5% of the total trade between the US and EU is subject to tariffs, and 1.1% of trade between the US and Mexico.
For the EU, Canada, and Mexico, the amount of trade subject to tariffs would increase dramatically if Trump follows through on his threat to place tariffs on imports of cars and auto parts.
The goods subject to tariffs are wide-ranging — from bulldozers to chicken incubators to hairspray.
Jenny Cheng/Business Insider
Trump’s tariffs have so far focused on industrial goods like metals, machinery, and components.
In particular, Trump has tried to attack industries that are part of China’s Made in China 2025 plan, which is designed to help boost Chinese companies in a variety of high-growth industries like technology.
By comparison, the retaliatory tariffs from China, the EU, and others predominately go after US agricultural goods, as well as a jumble of consumer products like nail polish and kitchen equipment.
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Energy and services will be supplied under the M&S Energy brand.
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Apple wants its parts suppliers to use renewable energy, like it does at its stores and headquarters.
So it’s investing in a $300 million fund along with its suppliers that will invest in new solar and wind projects in China.
The fund will be managed by DWS Group, Deutche Bank’s asset management arm.
Apple is reaching into its cash pile to help spread solar energy and wind farms across China.
The iPhone maker has teamed up with 10 of its components suppliers to create a new $300 million fund that will invest in renewable sources of energy in China over the next four years.See the rest of the story at Business Insider
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AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis
Trump’s import taxes are meant to help US manufacturers by making foreign products more expensive, but this will hurt likely American consumers.
A new wave of tariffs targeting hundreds of Chinese industrial goods is set to take effect on July 6th.
According to Labor Department estimates, the average cost of washing machines shot up by 17% in the past three months.
Many other goods, such as the computer chips that power PCs and smartphones, are important components of the finished products consumers love — new tariffs could eventually drive up prices on these too.
President Trump has promised to get tough on America’s trading partners. But with the administration now slapping hefty duties on imported goods such as steel and washing machines, and threatening them on many others, it’s American consumers who could be hurt.
While Trump has long complained that trade agreements with nations like China and Mexico need to be renegotiated, his biggest move so far has been placing tariffs — import taxes, payable to the US government — on goods these countries import into the US.
The taxes are meant to help US manufacturers by making foreign goods comparatively more expensive and, therefore, less attractive to consumers. Most economists disagree with Trump’s approach, however, arguing that the tariffs could easily destroy more US jobs — mainly at companies forced to pay higher raw materials costs — than they create. “Companies that can will pass the increased costs onto consumers,” says Erica York, an analyst at the Tax Foundation, a Washington think tank. “If they can’t pass them on, that will come out of profits, which means less money to hire or give raises.”
The first tariffs, targeting a handful of consumer goods, debuted earlier this year; they were followed by taxes on raw steel and aluminum. Now a new wave focusing specifically on hundreds of Chinese industrial goods is set to go into effect in July. And Trump has threatened to target still more Chinese goods — possibly including many popular consumer items like televisions and cellphones.
Here’s a complete rundown of all the goods that could cost you more — or already do — as a result of Trump’s trade war.
Trump fired an initial shot in his trade war in January, targeting just two products — washing machines and solar panels. The administration placed a tax of 20% to 50% on large residential washing Machines after Whirlpool complained that foreign competitors, including Korean giants Samsung and LG, were unfairly undercutting its prices.
The move initially helped Whirlpool — the company’s stock jumped 5% and it said it would hire 200 workers — but the benefit was offset when the White House also slapped tariffs on imported steel (more on that in a bit), pushing up its costs.
Now US consumers stand to lose. The Wall Street Journal, citing Labor Department data, recently estimated the average cost of washing machines had shot up 17% in just the past three months.
As with washing machines, tariffs on solar panels — in this case 30% for 2017, with lower rates over the next several years — followed complaints from US manufacturers. But the solar tariffs were highly controversial even within the solar industry, with the Solar Energy Industries Association predicting the new tax could cost as many as 23,000 US jobs, as higher costs prompt homeowners and businesses to put off solar installations. (That’s nearly one out of every 10 jobs in the solar industry.)
Just how much could the tariffs cost you? In May, energy marketplace EnergySage estimated they would add $500 to $1,000 to the cost of the typical home installation project. Such projects typically cost $16,000 to $21,000, according to the group’s estimates.
Beer and soup
Trump followed up with a broader set of tariffs starting June 1: a 25% levy on steel and 10% levy on aluminum. Few Americans buy these these materials directly, almost everyone buys products that include them — like cars, for instance, or the cans that hold beer, soda, and soup.
Of course, the cost of metals is just one component of the ultimate price consumers pay.
When it comes to foodstuffs, the increase is likely to be moderate. Shortly after the tariff was announced Trump commerce secretary Wilbur Ross went on TVlugging cans of Campbell soup, insisting the steel tariff would boost the cost of each can by only a fraction of a penny. Similarly, in March The New York Timesestimated the aluminum tariff could boost beer costs by something like a penny a can.
Cars, on the other hand, use a lot more steel and aluminum than a can of soup. Ross himself said that the administration’s 25% steel tariff could add as much as $175 to the price of a $35,000 car. Of course, he called that amount “trivial” — but others have noted that it’s about what many people will get from the Trump tax cut.
And there’s another worry for car buyers: In addition to taxing raw materials, President Trump has said he might institute a separate tariff as high as 25% on foreign cars and car parts. Automakers oppose the move, which Trump says may nonetheless be justified on national security grounds.
A new report from Moody’s, released Monday, said European automakers without US plants (like Jaguar and Land Rover) would be among the hardest hit. But GM, which imports almost a third of the cars it sells in the US from plants in Canada and Mexico, and Ford, which imports about 20%, would also suffer.
Last week the American Action Forum, a Washington think tank, estimated a new 25% tariff would boost the cost of buying an imported car by $4,000 to $5,000. Even cars assembled in the US — which nonetheless typically include many foreign auto parts — would see a roughly $1,300 price increase.
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The idea of staying in a messy, loud hostel might seem like a thing of the past — best kept for the backpacking days of your late teens and 20s.
However, a “hostel” is simply “budget-friendly accommodation that focuses on a shared social experience.” While to be considered a hostel it must have the option of a dorm room, most offer private rooms as well — and instead of messy and loud, some can actually be pretty luxurious.
Business Insider teamed up with hostel booking site Hostelworld and its HOSCAR ranking of the best hotels in the world to discover where you’ll find the most luxurious hostel in every European country for under £40 ($54).
Scroll down to see each one — as well as what it will cost you and what you can expect — in alphabetical order.
The following nation states and cross-border countries are not included in the list: The Åland Islands, Faroe Islands, Gibraltar, Guernsey, Isle of Man, Jersey, Monaco, San Marino, Svalbard, Ukraine, and Vatican City.
ALBANIA: Stone City Hostel, Gjirokaster.
Situated right in the heart of the old town of Gjirokaster, Stone City Hostel is close to the best sights, including a castle and communist bunker.
It boasts a huge roof terrace with brilliant views of the castle, a shaded garden with fruit trees, and is also next to the best coffee bar in town.
ANDORRA: Mountain Hostel, El Tarter.
If the outdoor heated pool and jacuzzi aren’t enough to tempt you, Andorra’s eco-friendly Mountain Hostel is perfect for mountain sports and activities like skiing, snowboarding, freeride, freestyle, and ski touring in the winter season, and mountain biking, hiking, and trail running in summer.
The hostel uses solar energy and is also bike-friendly, offering cyclists a security box, padlock, workshops with tools, and a bike wash area.
ARMENIA: Kantar, Yerevan.
Located in the very centre of Yerevan, just a minute’s walk from the Republic Square, this cosy hostel has dorms for four to eight people or private bedrooms with balconies.
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