U.S. Federal Government Amps Up E-Waste Reuse and Recycling
May 6, 2014 07:59 AM - Leon Kaye, Triple Pundit
The U.S. federal government is the nation's largest consumer and disposer of electronics. Considering the number of federal employees—about 2.7 million at last count, not including the military or courts—U.S. government employees contribute a massive portion to the approximate 2.4 million tons of electronic waste, or e-waste, that is discarded annually. Not only are those monitors, printers, cell phones and all those peripherals leeching chemicals into soil and water supplies, government (as well as companies) leave money on the table thanks to all of those rare earth minerals allowing them to function in the first place.
New hopes for getting the lead out of solar
May 5, 2014 10:16 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN
Solar energy is arguably our most viable low cost energy source. It is forever sustainable and easily captured and converted. But now the technology may have taken yet another leap forward. To date the foundational technology behind photovoltaics was a structure called perovskite, which has been made with lead. Using tin instead of lead perovskite as the harvester of light, a team of Northwestern University researchers has created a new solar cell with "good efficiency". This good efficiency solar cell is low-cost, environmentally friendly and can be easily made using "bench" chemistry -- no fancy equipment or hazardous materials.
"Close the door to landfilling." says the European Commission's Director-General for Environment
May 2, 2014 10:58 AM - Editor, ENN
In a passionate call for change, Karl Falkenberg, European Commission Director-General for Environment calls for a closure of landfilling, as we know it. "Separate collection is very much at the heart of this circular economy - [but] we are coming to realize that separate collection is not enough," said Falkenberg, the at a conference in Brussels on Tuesday (29 April).
Thoughtfully green Mother's Day gifts for your mother and Mother Nature
May 1, 2014 03:11 PM - Editor, ENN
No one is more special that your own mother - especially on Mother's Day. Celebrate your own mother and "Mother Nature" with one of these five great green gift ideas. These options offer a sustainable alternative to the chemical-laden flowers and mass-produced chocolates that dominate the market on Mother's Day. 1. Buy eco-friendly flowers- Although they are a beautiful part of nature, flowers aren't always eco-friendly. Most flowers are grown with a slew of chemicals and pesticides. They also typically come from warmer climates, such as South America, and have to make a long temperature-controlled journey before they reach your door. Opt for a greener option instead. There are several companies that sell eco-friendly flowers that are organically and locally grown. You could also purchase a potted plant from your local nursery. Not only are potted plants greener, they typically last a lot longer than a fresh-cut bouquet.
Oil underpinnings in Virunga National Park
May 1, 2014 11:06 AM - Editor, ENN
Virunga National Park, classified as a World Heritage site sits amongst the Rwenzori Mountains on the eastern portion of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). It spectacular features include its most well known residents, hippos and mountain gorillas. It is believed to have more biological diversity than any other protected area in Africa, no doubt in large part due to its mountain forests, wetlands, savanna grassland, volcanoes and lakes.
Dissolving shells on the West Coast
April 30, 2014 01:10 PM - Robin Blackstone, ENN
Evidence now indicates that acidity of West Coast continental shelf waters is dissolving the shells of tiny free-swimming marine snails, called pteropods, the major food source for pink salmon, mackerel and herring. Funded by NOAA, the study estimates the percentage of pteropods in this region with dissolving shells due to ocean acidification has doubled in the nearshore habitat since the pre-industrial era and is on track to triple by 2050 when coastal waters become 70 percent more corrosive than in the pre-industrial era due to human-caused ocean acidification.
The EPA is enhancing sustainability: one Great Lake at a time
April 29, 2014 10:58 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN
Two Great Lakes Restoration Initiative grants were awarded on Friday totaling $1 million earmarked towards Chicago green infrastructure projects. The projects will improve water quality in Lake Michigan. The infrastructure projects will prevent stormwater from carrying contamination into Lake Michigan.
Glyphosate found in breast milk
April 28, 2014 11:13 AM - Editor, The Ecologist
A pilot study of American mothers' milk has found levels of the herbicide glyphosate around 1,000 times higher than allowed in European drinking water. Campaigners are demanding a ban on the use of glyphosate on food crops. In the first ever testing on glyphosate herbicide in the breast milk of American women, Moms Across America and Sustainable Pulse have found 'high' levels in three out of the ten samples tested.
Unleashing the inner green consumer
April 24, 2014 11:08 AM - Click Green Staff, ClickGreen
Academics have uncovered a key influence in the consumer's decision to go green, whether it's recycling, composting or buying environmentally friendly products. Research from Concordia University's John Molson School of business, proves that even just asking ourselves, or predicting, whether we will engage in sustainable shopping behavior can increase the likelihood of following through — especially when there's an audience.
Cry for global STEM funding
April 24, 2014 10:50 AM - Oliver Girard, Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) , SciDevNet
In today's global economy, a workforce trained in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) is recognized as a primary driver of growth. Around the world, STEM education initiatives vary in scope, size, type, target populations and funding sources. What’s missing is a unified global mechanism for STEM education. Creating a Global STEM Fund would help support and implement effective and innovative STEM programs in developing countries. The NGO Cosmos Education, the STEM Innovation Camp in South Africa, the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences and the Bunengi STEM Africa are but a few examples of organizations and programs that could benefit.