Marley, Mars, and Moray

I checked out the Ziggy Marley concert in Brixton last night with a friend, where, early in a musically tight set of originals and a few covers, including his  reggae legend father Bob Marley’s “Could You Be Loved?”, Ziggy and his band the Melody Makers performed “I Don’t Want to Live on Mars,” a cut off their new album Fly Rasta. Before playing the song, Ziggy told the crowd that it was about the “environment,” and I found myself singing along with the catchy refrain: “I don’t want to live on Mars, I don’t to drive fast cars, I just want to be with you.” Here’s to protecting the planet we call home, being a responsible about our carbon emissions, and, of course, love.


In other Mars news, it was heartening to see UK media covering NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden’s speech at the Humans to Mars conference in Washington Tuesday, where he sketched out a possible path to landing astronauts on Mars in the 2030s. Mars exploration is something a of a recurring theme for us at Embassy London, and I read with interest Administrator Bolden’s “steppingstone” strategy involving new technology, public-private partnerships, the International Space Station, and missions to nearby asteroids, lunar and Mars orbit, before attempting to put people on our next neighbor from the Sun.


And, in an effort to control temperatures on Earth, UK Energy Secretary Ed Davey announced government support for 8 renewable energy projects on April 23, including offshore wind farms in Moray, Liverpool, Cromer, East Yorkshire, and Walney, and coal-to-biomass power plant conversions in Middlesbrough, Northumberland, and Selby. With a cost of £1 billion/year to guarantee prices, HMG estimates the eight sites will generate 8,500 new jobs, power up to 3 million homes, and add 5% to the UK’s clean energy supply. Davey also said he hopes to see significant private investment in each of these projects, and, should that not happen, one of the 49 other proposals that was passed over in this initial funding round could be chosen as a replacement.