Environment, News

Eating less meat could be the solution to water use

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Eating less meat could protect the driest areas of the world, saving much needed water. Reducing the use of animal products is very significant in all parts of the world, as meat production requires more water than other agricultural products, they say. In case you don’t know, every food we eat (and every product we use) has an embedded water footprint –…

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…

Environmental Issues, Geology, News

California issued rights for five times the water it actually has

How bad is California's drought? Just look above. Photo: Wiki

California is facing one of its direst drought streaks, and only last year it came out of its warmest winter on record. Clearly, things aren’t looking that good and the most vulnerable resource to these conditions is at the same time the most valuable: water. Desperate times, call for desperate measures, and this means in some instances policymakers need to…

Animals, Health & Medicine, News

Pig heart grafted to baboon abdomen survives for more than a year

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While most of the hype is centered around biotech efforts that try to engineer human organs from scratch in the lab, a better idea might be to grow human-compatible organs in foreign hosts. Researchers at the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) of the National Institutes of Health genetically modified pig hearts with some human genes then grafted these to…

News, Renewable Energy, World Problems

Chinese coal consumption just fell for first time this century

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We’re used to reporting year after year how China’s coal consumption is increasing and how they are polluting more and more. But this is the first year in over 2 decades when the number hasn’t increased. Could China’s coal boom be over? While positive signs have been emerging from China for well over a year, it appears the ‘war on…

Environment, Great Pics, News

Antarctica from Pole to coast, captured in stunning detail

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A mosaic of more than 3,150 high-resolution satellite images creates the best continent-wide view since 1997. The result is the one you see below: The over three thousand pictures were taken in the Southern Hemisphere’s autumn of 2008, and tiled together into a coast-to-coast view of the entire continent with its coastal waters. The result is not only lovely to look…

Climate, News, World Problems

Today, we have finished all the natural resources for the entire year. The rest is environmental debt

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The world has reached what is called ‘World Overshoot Day‘ – the point in the year when humans have exhausted supplies such as land, trees and fish and outstripped the planet’s annual capacity to absorb waste products including carbon dioxide. But that’s not half of it – things are actually getting worse, with the planet slipping into ecological debt sooner…

Animals, Videos

Meet an awesome blonde penguin

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Seafarers on a 2012 National Geographic-Lindblad expedition to Antarctica found this amazing and rare “blond” penguin on a colony on Aitcho Island. < The penguin actually suffers from a condition called isabellinism or leucism – not albinism.Though technically separate conditions, isabellinism and leucism are used interchangeably In albinism, there is a complete or partial lack of the skin pigment called melanin…

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…

Animals, News

100,000 elephants killed in Africa between 2010 and 2012, study finds

Elephant numbers are dwindling, with over 100.000 elephants being killed in Africa between 2010 and 2012. Image via AP.

Most societies in Africa are leading an uphill battle in their attempt to ensure safety, good health and food security. But for African animals, it’s even worse. Poachers alone killed an estimated 100,000 elephants across Africa between 2010 and 2012, raising new concerns about the species’ survival. Poaching in Africa is huge – the term ‘crisis’ has rarely been used…