Animals, Biology

Meet the aye-aye: the strangest looking primate in the world

aye aye madagascar

Exclusively found in the north-eastern parts of Madagascar, these peculiarly looking primates may both be the strangest and adorable looking things you’ll see all day. Aye-ayes (Daubentonia madagascariensis) are dark brown or black and are distinguished by a bushy tail that is larger than their body; and they also look like gremlins. Distinguishing features include big, penetrating eyes, large sensitive ears and very…

News, Pollution, World Problems

Greenland’s ice is no longer white – and that’s bad news for climate change

Dark snows, dark tides. Image via Dark Snow.

Everyone knows that Greenland isn’t exactly green – it’s covered in snow, so it should be white. Except… it’s not white anymore. Jason Box, a member of the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland, has been studying the snow in Greenland over the summer and his observations are seriously disturbing. According to him, the snow is darker than ever, and this…

Environment, News, World Problems

Texas proposes rewriting school text books to deny manmade climate change

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Texas wants to rewrite 6th grade school books to deny that climate change is caused by humans, falsely claiming scientific disagreement on the topic. The proposed Texan science book writes “scientists…do not agree on what is causing the [climate] change”. Let’s take a moment to analyze the facts here. While climate change denial may be given a lot of air…

Environment, News, Pollution

BP caught using ‘college’ tricks to cheat page count in court document

The ruling related to BP's role in the Gulf of Mexico oil spill Photo: EPA

The BP trial just keeps getting more and more interesting. After being fined $17.8 billion the giant oil company keeps trying to do funny stuff – even in court. A judge reprimanded BP for using tactics that would “not be appropriate for a college term paper”, after they tried to sneak in an extra 6 pages into a document by manipulating line spacings….

Climate, Environmental Issues, News, Pollution

World deforestation surprisingly results in net cooling effect

Cropland bordering rainforest in Iguacu National Park, Argentina, Brazil. Photo: Watson Institute, Brown University

In the 1950s rainforests  covered 14% of the earth’s land surface; now they cover a mere 6% and experts estimate that the last remaining rainforests could be consumed in less than 40 years. It’s believed that deforestation accounts for about 20% of global emissions of CO2, because of the a reduced carbon storage capacity. Yet there may be a hidden side…

Chemistry, News, Pollution

US drinking water contaminated with gas because of faulty wells, but not fracking

Melanie Stetson Freeman/The Christian Science Monitor via Getty Images

Stanford researchers traced back methane leaks from contaminated drinking water in Pennsylvania and Texas to shale gas wells. However, they note that they did not find a link between the contamination and the technique used to drill for shale gas itself, called hydraulic fracturing or more commonly known as fracking. Instead, the researchers concluded that well integrity is the main…

Eco tips, News, Technology, World Problems

The App that could fight food waste

Wasted food is a huge problem throughout the entire digital world. Image via Wiki Commons.

According to the EPA, Americans waste some 30-40 percent of all the food they use. Even not considering the poorest areas such as Africa or SE Asia where food is almost a luxury, there are 50 million Americans who don’t have daily access to adequate food; reducing food waste could improve and save countless lives. Food waste is a huge problem…

Environmental Issues, News

Energy efficiency could boost economy by $18 trillion, but energy saving is only 25%

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The world is currently on a downward spiral, risking reaching a point of no return where global warming can no longer be reversed – not in due time at least. We’re already 50ppm of CO2 (parts per million) over the 350ppm average atmospheric CO2 concentration, considered by leading experts the carbon stabilizing threshold. It’s increasingly clear that steps are needed…

Environment, News, Pollution

China sees big drop in carbon emissions: “There is no turning back in China’s commitment to a sound eco-system”

Image via Clean Biz

This year has been full of encouraging news from China – apparently, they’re committed to their war on pollution, and not only has their coal consumption decreased, but coal consumption has also decoupled from economic growth – that is, their economy is growing even as they use less coal. Now, China’s carbon emissions saw the largest drop in years –…

News, Renewable Energy

New electrolysis system produces hydrogen 30 times faster

A scheme that shows two methods of hydrogen generation: electrolysis and methane reforming. Image: jaea.go.jp

A new method of producing hydrogen has been reported by researchers at University of Glasgow that’s 30 times faster than current state-of-the-art methods, providing yet another advance that might one day lead to a sustainable hydrogen based economy. There’s only so much that renewable energy can grow with today’s infrastructure due to base load considerations. If the intermittency can be…