How Oslo Learned to Fight Climate Change
Source:The New Yorker
In September of 2019, roughly a dozen workers in Oslo, Norway, broke ground on the world’s first zero-emission construction site. They were widening a busy street into a pedestrian zone, using powerful machinery to break and lift slabs of asphalt. But the equipment was so quiet that nearby cafés and restaurants kept their front doors open. Passersby stopped to pose for photos, ask questions, and praise the project. Despite long hours in cold temperatures, the crew found the work energizing; the absence of deafening noise and noxious fumes was refreshing.
By using only electric excavators and machinery, the project avoided nearly a hundred thousand kilograms of CO2 emissions. But its larger goal was to help drive the market for electrical heavy-construction equipment. When work began, so few electric excavators existed that engineers had to retrofit a diesel excavator with an electric engine and battery. But since the project’s completion Oslo has committed to making all municipal construction projects zero-emission by 2025. Private companies bidding to win contracts now receive extra points if they use zero-emission equipment, and more of these machines are entering theMore info