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EL ESPECTADOR

Solar Power: Researchers Map Out Colombia's Sunshine Hotspots

Engineers in Antioquia decided to cross-reference data on solar radiation and cloud cover to encourage greater use of solar panels.

Installing solar panels in Colombia
Installing solar panels in Colombia
Mónica Monsalve

BOGOTÁ — If the world hopes to avoid the nightmare climate-change scenario spelled out in recent weeks by the IPCC, it must act quickly to embrace renewable energy sources like wind or solar power. By 2050, the panel of environmental experts urged, renewable energy systems need to provide 70-80% of the world's electricity.

Colombia is nowhere close to meeting that target, but there are people here who are working on the problem. Such is the case of the EnergEIA research team at the Universidad EIA, a private engineering school in Antioquia. With an eye on the country's solar energy potential, the researchers compiled a sunshine and radiation atlas. They mapped Colombia, in other words, to determine specifically where solar panels would work best.

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Coronavirus

In Shanghai, A Brewing Expat Exodus As COVID Crackdown Shows "Real" China

Not only strict rules of freedom of movement as part of Zero-COVID policy but also an increase in censorship has raised many questions for the expat population in the megacity of 26 million that had long enjoyed a kind of special status in China as a place of freedom and openness. A recent survey of foreigners in the Chinese megacity found that 48% of respondents said they would leave Shanghai within the next year.

People walk in Tianzifang, located in Huangpu District, a well-known tourist attraction in Shanghai.

Lili Bai

SHANGHAI — On the seventh day of the lockdown, Félix, a French expat who has worked in Shanghai for four years, texted his boss: I want to "run,' mais je sais pas quand (but I don’t know when). A minute later, he received a reply: moi aussi (me too).

Félix had recently learned the new Mandarin word 润 (run) from social network postings of his local friends. Because its pinyin “rùn” is the same as the English word “run,” Chinese youth had begun to use it to express their wish to escape reality, either to “be freed from mundane life”, or to “run toward your future.”

For foreigners like Félix, by associating the expression “run” with the feeling of the current lockdown in Shanghai, “everything makes sense.” Félix recalled how at the end of March, the government denied rumors of an impending lockdown: “My Chinese colleagues all said, Shanghai is China’s top city, there would be no lockdown no matter what.”

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