Green Living, News, World Problems

New kind of plastic recycles itself when exposed to UV light

plastic uv light

In 2012, the United States generated almost 14 million tons of plastics as containers and packaging, about 11 million tons as durable goods such as appliances, and almost 7 million tons as nondurable goods, such as plates and cups. Compared to the 1960s, when plastics were less than one percent of the waste stream, this ubiquitous class of materials has now…

Environmental Issues, Green Living, News, Pollution

World’s largest polluters, China and US, agree to cut emissions in historic agreement

china-pollution

President Obama and Chinese leader  Xi Jinping agreed to sign a deal that will see the US nearly double its efforts to cut CO2 emissions by 2025 and China cap its CO2 emissions for the very first time. This historic agreement between the two largest polluters in the world, which together amount to 45% of all greenhouse gases released in…

Chemistry, Green Living, News, Renewable Energy

Jet Fuel and Enzymes power Fuel Cell for the First Time

800px-Boeing_Fuel_Cell_Demonstrator_AB1

Researchers at University of Utah have demonstrated for the first time a working biological fuel cell that uses enzymes to convert jet fuel into electricity; all at room temperature. Fuel cells are much cleaner and efficient at producing energy than internal combustion engines – theoretically, fuel cells can be up to four times more efficient since the energy conversion is electrochemical…

Environmental Issues, Green Living, News, World Problems

Fossil Fuel divestment movement gathers Momentum

Oxford University students march for the Fossil Free Future campaign in Oxford. Photograph: Ellen Gibson/Fossil Free Future

Ever more municipalities and universities have joined the call to divest fossil fuel, thus reinforcing the message that these institutions are unwilling to back financially an industry that is a potential threat to our very own existence. Örebro in Sweden, Boxtel in the Netherlands and Seattle in the USA are all part of a growing push for cities to pull their…

Green Living, News, Renewable Energy, Technology

Poor Countries install Renewable Energy two times faster than the Rich

renewable energy africa

Developing countries are catching up fast and there’s a lot the rich can learn, especially in terms of energy. A study of 55 nations found that developing countries like China, Brazil, South Africa, Uruguay and Kenya are installing renewable energy projects at almost twice the rate of developed nations. In many of these countries renewable energy is actually cheaper than conventional…

Green Living, News, Technology

Windowless Plane reduces CO2 Emissions and makes the trip more Enjoyable

plane-interior

An UK design firm is proposing a most daring idea: replace the windows in a plane with super-light smartscreen panel made from organic LEDs (OLED). These panels would cover most of the plane’s inner surface and display the view from outside, better and lovelier than any windows could. Of course, you could choose to watch a football match, read a…

Chemistry, Green Living, News, Renewable Energy

New insights on photosynthesis bring us one step closer to solar fuels

Scientists have determined the exact structure of an important photosynthesis complex at a crucial stage. Photo: Shutterstock

For billions of years, nature has been harnessing the energy from the sun through photosynthesis. This way, plants, algae and cyanobacteria use sunlight to split water and produce energy-rich chemical compounds from carbon dioxide (CO2). This energy is then transferred to animal that eat these plants, and animals that eat plant-eating animals, including us humans. It’s clear that without photosynthesis, there…

Green Living, News, Pollution

People in Beijing can pay for public transportation in recycling

Image via PangeaToday

People from Beijing can now use one of the city’s 34 newly installed facilities which allows them to pay for public transportation or charge their phone credit with empty plastic bottles. China is the world’s biggest polluter, and will likely stay so for years and years to come. The growth of their economy has been fueled by coal consumption, which…

Green Living, Health & Medicine, News

Older, more compact cities are better for your health

Healthiest city designs, from best to worst (Journal of Transportation and Health)

A first of its kind study conducted at the University of Colorado Denver looked at how city design affects populace health. Older cities, initially built for pedestrian traffic in mind were found to harbor less cases of diabetes and other diseases than those with broader streets and fewer intersections. While some people can stay healthy and stick to exercising habits no matter where they live in, the study suggests that in general cities which are optimized for vehicle traffic discourage walking and other healthy activities….

Anthropology, Climate, Environment, Green Living, News

Aboriginals boost kangaroo populations when hunting with fire

While they hunt kangaroos, aborigines in remote areas of Australia help boost marsupial populations by lighting bush fires. Image: acanberraboy.blogspot.com

The Aboriginal Martu people have been hunting kangaroos and sand monitor lizards for over 2,000 years. During this time, the natives have not only lived sustainably, but also became unwilling conservationists helping kangaroo populations grow by sparking wild fires that help them catch lizards, a study by researchers at University of Utah found. In other remote areas where this subsistence practice ceased,…