US Speeds Plan to Cut Truck Pollution, Netflix Axes Russian Service; Tech Worker Burnout Crisis; Sony & Honda Joint Deal Building EVs

The Biden administration is accelerating the move to clean up truck emissions. Theverge.com reports that the EPA has proposed a new rule that would require new trucks to reduce harmful nitrogen oxide emissions by 90 percent from current standards by 2031. Biden is also taking aim at greenhouse gas pollution by boosting efforts to switch out diesel-burning vehicles with electric or hydrogen-powered trucks and buses. This follows an infusion of cash for cleaner-burning vehicles laid out in the bipartisan infrastructure law passed last year.

Netflix becomes the latest to exit from Russia over the weekend. Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and PayPal have all cut off the country, according to cnet.com. Now, Russian citizens have to stand in long lines at banks to get their rubles that are now worth around a penny. That and no Netflix ought to make for a pretty irate public. Late last week, Russian police were stopping people and demanding to read their texts on phones, or face arrest and confiscation of their cell phones. Meanwhile, with most foreign press and social media shut down, Ukrainians have taken to texting pictures of Russians bombing cities and killing civilians in Ukraine. They have gone to thousands of cell phones in Russia…including those of tv presenters that have been pumping out propaganda for Putin. 

This will come as no great surprise to anyone who works in or is around people who work in tech and IT, but there is a ‘burnout crisis’ happening. Now, there are some stats to back that up. ZDnet.com says that a study by mental well being platform Yerbo, which included 36,200 IT pros from 33 countries, found that 2 out of 5 were at high risk of burnout. Its all the result of longer hours, more demanding workloads and conflicts in work-life balance. 42% of IT workers who are facing high levels of burnout are considering quitting their company in the next six months, Yerbo found, while 62% of IT professionals report being “physically and emotionally drained”. Again, not a shock…but a validation….and something the tech industry had better get moving in addressing.

In case you missed it, late last week Sony and Honda signed a memo of understanding to build EVs together. Engadget.com reports that it isn’t yet a final deal, but would marry Sony’s infotainment, mobile, and image sensor expertise with Honda’s car building and sales savvy. Honda will design, manufacture and market the first model, with Sony creating the mobility service platform. After coming late to the EV party, Honda now says it will shift its entire lineup to EVs by 2040. Some makers will be 100% EV by 2030. 



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