issues and experts

Electric cars, taxes, over population

January 02, 2013
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Taxing the rich
While people making under $400,000 a year in the United States are likely toasting President Obama’s latest tax decision, to increase only the taxes of the rich, an SFU expert isn’t impressed. Andrey Pavlov, a professor of finance, says: “I am quite disappointed with the solution – it really does absolutely nothing to address the deficit. The U.S. government is borrowing 40 cents of every dollar it spends today, yet there are no specific cuts in the current deal. The increase in taxes for top income earners is in theory helpful to cutting the deficit, but of little practical relevance…Collecting an estimated 600 billion of additional revenue is a drop in the bucket.  But more importantly, I am very skeptical the additional money will ever be collected.”

Andrey Pavlov, 778.782.7922, 604.763.3696 (cell)

Electrical travel recharged
Toyota’s development of a wireless charging system that allows electric cars to recharge their batteries at parking spaces is rejuvenating the dream of making these cars highway viable. But Gordon Price, director of SFU's City Program, says: “I wouldn't discount technological breakthroughs, but at this point I wonder if its really worth the trouble to build the infrastructure on a highway scale given that it's likely to change and/or get discarded quickly. Remember the Hydrogen Highway promotion before the Olympics? There are better alternatives for moving people long distances, for example electric trains, and better first choices for spending resources to accommodate electric car demand within urban areas.”

Gordon Price, 778.782.5081, 604.505.9958 (cell), price@sfu.ca

Year 2100 population
The year 2100 may seem a ways off but it’ll be here before we know it and so will its projected world population of 10 billion (current population just over 7 billion). That’s why SFU’s Human Evolutionary Studies Program (HESP) is bringing together several leading international thinkers to analyse what our planet will be like when it’s overpopulated. In free public lectures at 7 p.m., Jan. 24 to Mar. 7, researchers will predict the impact of a 10-billion-strong world population on demographics, genetics, cultures, ethics, economics and resources. The lecture series, 7 Billion and You, runs at SFU Vancouver, Harbour Centre. SFU archaeologist Mark Collard and SFU biologist Arne Mooers, both members of HESP, can comment.

Mark Collard, 778.782.8166, mcollard@sfu.camark.collard@shaw.ca
Arne Mooers, 778.782.3979, 604.818.1627 (cell), amooers@sfu.ca, skype: arnemooers

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