Who cares about Clark Kent?

With the arrival of the mobile phone, phone boxes are now obsolete. So, what to do with all those boxes and their infrastructure? Ireland is applying adaptive reuse of the well-positioned phone booths by turning them into EV chargers.

Irish telecoms company Eir and EV charging network EasyGo will replace 180 phone boxes with EV rapid charge points. EasyGo will use DC rapid chargers developed by Australia-based Tritium.

Gerry Cash, director of EasyGo, explains the reason for the innovative collaboration:

We’ve a culture of going into towns and places of convenience. Typically, the locations of the phone boxes are in those types of places. And that’s what we want to do — make the experience of charging a car easy, comfortable, and safe for people.

Way too reasonable a solution to satisfy Americans. Or someone really important…like the board of directors of AT&T.

Good News for Reforestation

DroneSeed, a company that uses fleets of drones to reforest areas burned in wildfires, received approval in October from the Federal Aviation Administration for its heavy-lift drones to operate Beyond Visual Line of Sight and to expand its use of heavy-lift drone swarms to California, Colorado, Montana, Nevada, Arizona and New Mexico. They previously had FAA authorization to operate in Oregon, Washington, and Idaho.

The FAA’s action allows DroneSeed to begin reforesting once a fire is contained and airspace is clear. Their aircraft drop seeds that are encapsulated in vessels consisting of four to six seeds, fertilizer, natural pest deterrents, and fibrous material which absorbs water and increases survivability.

Good news all round. A great use for new tech. An added benefit in new means of reforestation. Bravo!

Pfizer, Moderna, skip White House vaccine summit

Pfizer and Moderna, the two pharmaceutical companies closest to gaining U.S. clearance for a Covid-19 vaccine, won’t attend a White House summit intended to build confidence in the shots.

With the Food and Drug Administration expected to decide on whether to allow the companies’ vaccines to be distributed in the coming days, there was worry that regulators and executives shouldn’t be seen rubbing elbows at the Tuesday meeting.

…The focus of the gathering shifted after Peter Marks, the head of the FDA center that reviews vaccines, volunteered to make a presentation…Since it would be would inappropriate to have vaccine company executives touting their shots while in the same room with their regulator, a decision was made not to include any drugmakers in the meeting, the official said on a call with reporters on Monday.

Predictably, Trump’s setup their “summit” to try to make it appear they had done something right in the fight against COVID-19. And fumbled the ball.

RTFA, though. Pfizer had already notified organizers they wouldn’t be attending. Something similar from Moderna. Both of these firms should be making announcements over the next week or two.

Transparency note: I own shares in Moderna in my retirement investment account.