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Smart Cities Dive: Fighting extreme heat in cities with urban design

August 8, 2019

The following is a contributed article from Adam Freed and Jacob Koch of Bloomberg Associates’ Sustainability Practice.

It’s no secret that climate change has caused extreme weather and record-shattering heatwaves around the world. This past month, Europe experienced its hottest month on record ever. In France, hydration breaks were required during the Women’s World Cup and more than 4,000 schools were forced to close. In the U.S., temperatures in Anchorage, AK soared above 90 degrees Fahrenheit, more than 20 degrees above normal; and San Francisco reached a high of 100 degrees, more than 30 degrees above average.

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Rebuilding Trust in Government Is Key to Strengthening Cities

August 5, 2019

In trust-rich Stockholm, where support for carbon action is among the highest in the world, officials are leaving nothing to chance. The city has pioneered an ambitious initiative that invites citizens to convert their yard waste into a carbon-capturing charcoal that residents can then use in their window boxes and gardens to promote plant growth. The project, initially funded by Bloomberg Philanthropies, advances Stockholm’s goal of becoming a fossil fuel-free city by 2040 and, importantly, vests residents even more fully in the city’s identity as a global climate leader.

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The Telegraph: Tobacco industry interference holds back efforts to stamp out smoking

July 26, 2019

Last year Bloomberg Philanthropies, which funded the WHO report, established Stopping Tobacco Organizations and Products (Stop), the world’s first tobacco industry watchdog. Stop has launched an online database, highlighting a wide range of organisations in 22 countries acting as what it describes as “tobacco industry allies” – organisations which purport to be independent but which receive funding from the tobacco industry and promote the tobacco companies’ agenda.

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The Washington Post: Latin America’s war on obesity could be a model for U.S.

July 16, 2019

“Brazil’s guidelines are simple but radical,” says Neena Prasad, of the Bloomberg Philanthropies, which has funded and provided technical assistance for obesity prevention programs in Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, Chile and Peru. “It’s a really sensible approach. Choose whole, minimally processed foods, cook those foods yourself, and eat those foods with other people.

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The Philadelphia Inquirer: Bloomberg announces Pennsylvania projects in its $10M overdose-prevention initiative

July 9, 2019

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s initiative to prevent overdoses around the country — starting with $10 million in funds going to Pennsylvania, one of the states hardest hit by the opioid crisis — is funding its first projects in the commonwealth.

Vital Strategies, the public health nonprofit that is working with Bloomberg Philanthropies on the project, is announcing Tuesday that the money will help more than 100 hospitals to develop treatment strategies for opioid use disorder; support the use of medication-assisted treatment in state prisons; and train law enforcement on the principles of harm reduction.

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Axios: How Democrats came to oppose natural gas

June 25, 2019

Why it matters: Natural gas, while far cleaner than coal and oil, is still a fossil fuel that emits heat-trapping emissions that cause global warming. It’s become plentiful in America over the past decade and is poised to become one of the world’s dominant energy sources. To what degree politicians embrace it or not is critical.

The big picture: As I’ve written in two recent Harder Line columns, Democrats, including those running for president, are increasingly embracing more aggressive and progressive policies on climate change while rejecting natural gas, along with oil and coal. But this hasn’t always been the case.

Flashback: Positions by two prominent Democrats — former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) — illustrate the overall party’s shift away from natural gas. Let’s break them down.

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Fast Company: Milan is embarking on a bold plan to plant 3 million trees

June 22, 2019

Soon, there will be more trees than people in the city of Milan. Mayor Giuseppe “Beppe” Sala has embarked on an ambitious plan to plant 3 million trees in the Italian city—population 1.3 million—better known for industry than natural wonders.

For the last year and a half, the city of Milan has been working with Bloomberg Associates, the pro bono, not-for-profit consultancy established by Michael Bloomberg with the goal of helping cities around the world. They work with local governments on disciplines like marketing, municipal integrity, sustainability, cultural asset management, urban planning, media, digital, tech, transportation, and social services. In Milan, the relationship covers about two-thirds of those disciplines, including the creation of new public plazas. (“It’s funny that ‘piazza’ comes from Italy and we’re going back and helping them new plazas,” says George Fertitta of Bloomberg Associates.)

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The Associated Press: Michael Bloomberg to plunge $500M into clean energy effort

June 6, 2019

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is plunging $500 million into an effort to close all of the nation’s remaining coal plants by 2030 and put the United States on track toward a 100% clean energy economy.

The billionaire Bloomberg’s investment in the Beyond Carbon initiative marks the largest ever philanthropic effort to combat climate change, according to the mayor’s foundation. The organization will bypass the federal government and instead seek to pass climate and clean energy policies, as well as back political candidates, at the state and local level.

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Thomson Reuters Foundation News: In landmark case, Brazil sues top tobacco firms to recover public health costs

May 22, 2019

The suit seeks to recover the cost of treating patients for 26 illnesses related to smoking tobacco or coming into contact with cigarette smoke, the AGU said in a statement.

Tobacco is the leading cause of preventable death in Brazil. It kills over 156,000 each year from related diseases, costing the healthcare system about 57 billion reais ($14.1 billion), according to a statement from Bloomberg Philanthropies.

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CNN: A temple that was built to help people heal after the Parkland school shooting goes up in flames

May 20, 2019

The Temple of Time, funded by Bloomberg Philanthropies, is among five large-scale art installations being displayed in Coral Springs and Parkland over two years. The projects are an extension of an art therapy program that has turned the Coral Springs Museum of Art into a space that has helped children and educators cope since the shooting.
Best also built two of the four benches surrounding the temple. They will be given to the families of victims Nicholas Dworet and Helena Ramsay. The others will be on display in Coral Springs and Parkland, city officials said.

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