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The Royal Mail is testing electric delivery vehicles to replace their 49,000 vehicle fleet with an eye towards lowering annual maintenance and fuel bills, and to help improve air quality in UK cities.
Royal Mail is testing-out a range of electric delivery vehicles to complement and eventually replace their 49,000 vehicle fleet. The smallest of these vans is pictured above with three (of the one-hundred on order) already delivering packages from the Mount Pleasant Mail Centre in London.
The new trucks come in three different payload ratings and the larger trucks are scheduled to begin operations later this year.
Three 3.5 tonne electric trucks, three 6 tonne, and three 7.5 tonne electric trucks will be tested in 2017.
“Royal Mail is delighted to be collaborating with Arrival and pioneering the adoption of large electric commercial vehicles. We are pleased to be the first fleet operator to take delivery of and trial these new larger payload vehicles which will complement the 100 electric vans we recently ordered. We will be putting them through their paces over the next several months to see how they cope with the mail collection demands from our larger sites.”
“Royal Mail is trialling a variety of vehicles to see which work best for us and are keen to share our experience with other fleet operators who may be considering introducing electric vehicles. We have trialled electric trucks before but not of this type of design and look forward to see what additional benefits they can bring to our existing fleet of around 49,000 vehicles.” — Paul Gatti, Royal Mail Fleet’s managing director
In congested and heavily polluted cities like London, switching from loud and smelly diesel-engined trucks to electric trucks can contribute to better air quality, as most of the fine particulate and soot found in city air is caused by diesel vehicle emissions.
“We are thrilled to partner with Royal Mail using our electric vehicles. Cities like London will benefit hugely from a switch to electric, in terms of both pollution and noise. Most importantly we are priced the same as diesel trucks removing the main barrier to go electric.” — Denis Sverdlov, CEO of Arrival
Formerly known as Charge Automotive, Arrival’s new 110,000 sq ft factory is located in Banbury, Oxfordshire.
Arrival says the trucks are built using, “revolutionary ultra-lightweight composite materials that significantly reduce the weight of the vehicle and by combining this technology with Arrival’s custom built hardware, including power electronics and motors, the cost of operating has been reduced by more than 50%.”
The company also says it’s pursuing autonomous driving technology and that the new trucks are ‘autonomous-ready’.
But what’s the real story here?
The real story is that 49,000 Royal Mail vehicles are going to need replacement within the next ten years. And not only the mail service, but hundreds of thousands of ambulances, courier company vehicles and private companies that haul their own freight will need replacement vehicles within ten years — and all of them could be built at the Arrival plant in Oxfordshire.
To say nothing of the number of delivery vehicles that will need replacement within ten years in every Commonwealth nation and throughout the rest of the world.
As much as I’m a fan of the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter van (and they are a great vehicle by any standard) these new Arrival vans come without a clattering and smelly diesel engine. And in today’s congested and polluted cities, that’s everything.
by John Brian Shannon | March 23, 2017
Yesterday’s terror attack in London has sharpened the will of Britain to face terrorism in all its forms, and has served to demonstrate the resolve of Britons to soldier-on despite a display of violence clearly designed to rattle citizens.
This is the London that survived The Blitz and returned stronger than ever. If terrorists are trying to cow a population into submission they chose the wrong city. The merchants of terror will soon find that they have expended much effort for little gain.
Terrorists want big headlines, a terrorized populace, and an over-compensating government that takes corrective measures far exceeding the scale of the problem.
Any publicized response to terrorists should be considered ‘overcompensating’ because more people are killed in Western countries by lightning than are killed by terrorists. More Europeans are killed by falling down their stairs at home than have been killed in the entire history of modern terrorism in Europe. And thousands of people are killed every year in car accidents. Yet the governments of Europe haven’t declared war on cars, stairs, nor lightning.
Tragic as yesterday’s events are, giving the perpetrators and backers of such crimes too much airtime only serves to reward and encourage them.
The Rise of Terrorism vs. The Rise of Knowledge and Responsibility
‘Under the radar’ for many, our civilization has entered a new era; A time of changing attitudes, a time for new pathways to better outcomes.
Knowledge has become more broadly available, more engagement occurs between citizens and their governments, more diversity adds to our understanding of the world, and along with the omnipresent globalization factor, all of these work to shape our worldview and the worldview of people in every corner of the world.
We’re now in an era akin to the time when Homo-sapiens superseded the Neanderthals, which was a time of unprecedented change. But our point of change is where the practitioners of ‘Win-Lose’ paradigms will be superseded by the practitioners of ‘Win-Win’ paradigms. (Terrorists and their thinking will become obsolete as ‘Win-Win’ thinking gains more traction)
The games desperadoes play which are designed to horrify and control large populations, are so 20th-century. Terrorists are rapidly becoming caricatures of themselves similar to ‘Achmed the Terrorist‘ of Saturday Night Live fame.
Why? It seems that wanton destruction and spreading fear have become the goals (for some) in the 21st century.
Terrorist groups no longer make demands, nor recite carefully worded manifestos that were years-in-the-making, nor do they bother to rail against the religious beliefs of Westerners, nor against alcohol, bikinis, or any other taboos created by puritanical control freaks.
In their own control-drama world they lost at the ‘Win-Lose’ game, a paradigm that they chose from the outset, because they believed they could ‘Win’ at that game. But they lost.
Now they console themselves by staging terror attacks sans-message to assuage their disappointment — a sad way for any human being to live their life, and let’s not forget the profound sadness they create among the innocent people caught in the crossfire of their destructive acts.
They Didn’t Start Off That Way
It’s a safe bet that every single human was born perfect — ‘free from sin’ as they used to say.
And in a perfect world every person would mature and fulfill their best destiny.
What failure it must be then that shapes young minds to eventually become killers of innocent people due to an imperfect understanding of religious texts. And then to fall even further by taking innocent human lives out of the sheer disappointment of having lost at the ‘Win-Lose’ paradigm.
Humans can’t fail much worse than that.
And every bit of it is preventable, either by every child receiving an advanced education so as to be able to properly understand the proper context and meanings of religious texts (for example) — or by teaching young minds that the only outcomes worth pursuing are ‘Win-Win outcomes’. Either would be fine. Both would be better.
“If you treat a man as he could and should be, he will become all that he can and should be.” — Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Keep Calm, and Carry On
In the meantime, while the human race continues to stumble unevenly towards Win-Win outcomes, the best way to manage the people who’ve grown up without the benefit of a proper education, without context in their lives, and are largely untaught in the concept of ‘Win-Win’ thinking — is to *not overreact* to their violent attempts to control outcomes.
And in so doing, we remove the incentive for them to practice their ideology.
by John Brian Shannon | February 14, 2017
It has become fashionable in recent weeks to talk about arranging some kind of special status for the City of London so that EU citizens can easily travel to London without the need to pass through UK customs.
Which would be convenient, wouldn’t it?
No pesky border guards to answer to, no briefcases opened and searched, and no wasted time for important EU-centric bankers and their European Union customers — and that applies whether they’re travelling for family vacations, to arrange financing for an EU business, or to meet their mistress in Calais.
Soon, bankers from every country will move to the UK to have all the advantages of EU access, combined with the privileges of living in Britain: A veritable banker’s paradise where the financial industry informs the UK government exactly how things will be.
Look now, it’s happening — just that it’s happening in slow-motion and nobody is seeing it for what it really is.
The Painfully Obvious Future of a ‘Special EU Status’ London
It’s so obviously in the EU’s interest to contrive a situation whereby London residents vote in a referendum to join the European Union, even as the rest of the UK continues to leave it (effectively sectioning-off London from the rest of the UK via the London Ring Road and Gatwick Airport) at which point the rest of the United Kingdom no longer held together by the economic gravity of London would probably dis-unite.
If Britain grants London ‘Special EU Status’ eventually it will become an EU City-state, Principality or Duchy, and Britons will need a passport to visit London.
Therefore, I can see why Brussels would want to contrive a ‘Special EU Status’ (SEUS) plan for the city of London, and I’m astonished at the innocent naiveté of Britons.
Recently, German Chancellor Angela Merkel practically ‘mansplained’ to British Prime Minister Theresa May how “The UK will not be allowed to cherry-pick the bits of the EU it likes” — even as EU negotiators do their own cherry-picking — with London as the plumpest and richest cherry in all of Europe.
Allowing this plan to come to fruition will create a weaker and less-united United Kingdom and it will handover the ‘gold’ (London) to the EU. And there’s not a thing Britain can do to prevent it once the City of London is granted any kind of EU-centric special status.
Yes! It’s a wonderful plan if you’re a member-state of the European Union, a Europhile, or a London banker who wants to avoid the hassle of going through customs with the little people.
Apparently the thinking goes along these lines; The world already has a global ‘1 percent class’ who own more than 50 percent of the world’s wealth and will own 80 percent of the world’s total wealth by 2035, so it’s obvious that the world should have a distinct ‘banker class’ and their friends the global elites can accomplish that via alternately bullying and schmoozing the UK government into a customs-free zone with the EU. Which seems to be working.
“Oh, and a peon holiday every Monday in London, Elizabeth. We don’t like Monday morning traffic. Cancel their other holidays to make up for it. Sniff.”
I would like to ask the UK government; Where else in the world are bankers allowed to travel without passing through customs because the bankers arranged the passing of a law that allowed them to do so? And where else in the world would a country that is leaving a Union, leave behind their own capital city with most of the country’s wealth?
The answer is; Nowhere on Earth has this happened, and for obvious reasons!
Rather than incrementally handing Britain’s most historic and important city to the European Union, it would be smarter to simply invite the EU-centric part of London’s financial sector to leave. Ah, Paris in the spring!
Losing the EU-based financial sector that operates out of London is surely preferable to losing the entire city of London to the EU — which WILL happen over time if the Special EU Status zone is approved, resulting in the consequent dissolution of the United Kingdom.
Is There a Precedent for Integration that leads to Assimilation?
All law functions on precedent and there is a rather large precedent for this in business law — the case of the United States vs. General Motors in the 1960’s. It’s a fascinating story.
In the early part of the 20th-century many manufacturers built vehicles for the American public who were decidedly pro-automobile. Ford was the first company to utilize innovative automotive production line assembly techniques and the company grew exponentially — in fact, they couldn’t keep up with the demand for their car, the Model T.
At the time, General Motors built trucks and other vehicles for the U.S. military, and heavy industry vehicles for the mining and forestry sectors and GM was heavily subsidized by the U.S. government. Meanwhile, Chevrolet simply fed off the demand that Henry Ford’s company couldn’t meet.
It was a brilliant strategy for Chevrolet. They adopted Ford’s assembly line manufacturing innovations and met most of the consumer demand that Henry couldn’t.
So successful was the Chevrolet plan, that the first car to outsell the Model T was the 1934 Chevrolet Coupe, which was Chevy’s version of the Model T which was available in every colour imaginable — unlike the Model T that was only available in black. Henry Ford painted all his cars black because that allowed the largest number of cars to be built in the shortest amount of time and at the lowest cost-per-unit. (No fussing with colours)
Ford grew, Chevrolet grew, and General Motors grew.
By the 1950’s, Chevrolet decided to turn the tables on its main competitor (Ford) by taking a note from Henry Ford’s playbook — outsourcing. Chevrolet lowered costs by outsourcing some manufacturing to the massive General Motors Corporation which accommodated Chevy’s request to build a few hundred thousand engines per year at a lower cost than Chevrolet could have ever imagined.
GM even asked Chevy to send over their engine specs and said they would build Chevy’s engines exactly how Chevrolet wanted. And with higher manufacturing standards.
It worked so well for Chevrolet that they later asked GM to supply transmissions, window glass, seats and door panels, and finally car bodies for Chevrolet. And General Motors happily obliged.
One sunny morning, GM began a hostile takeover of Chevrolet. Chevrolet objected and so did the U.S. government — and understandably Ford, Chrysler, Studebaker and the other automakers strenuously objected to the hostile takeover.
But during the discovery process to verify which company owned what, and which company was most responsible for Chevrolet’s massive success — even Chevrolet’s legal team couldn’t make a clear distinction. Neither could the FBI or U.S. Department of Justice investigators. Nor could the U.S. Supreme Court judges deciding the case who were left with no recourse but to allow the merger to proceed, as nobody could tell them exactly what constituted Chevrolet and what constituted General Motors!
Everyone in the industry was furious. Yet Ford, Studebaker, Chrysler, the new American Motors Company (AMC) and others couldn’t do a thing about it. And the U.S. Department of Justice wasn’t happy either.
It took approximately 25 years for GM to absorb Chevrolet, but in retrospect they could have done it in 18 years if they weren’t so busy playing it safe. (To better ensure their assimilation plan worked)
Chevrolet became a victim of its own brilliant success, while General Motors had a stellar plan all along; Integrate until nobody can tell the difference.
Assimilate London is exactly what the European Union will do with a separate-customs-arrangement-London.
It would be criminally naive to think otherwise.