Enn Original News

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.

Gardens in space
April 29, 2014 10:15 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

Catching floating raindrops, soil and seeds are making gardening just that much harder in the International Space Station. But this is how the astronauts function in their weightless environment. Even the plants don’t know which way to grow. Without gravity the soil and water simply float away unless contained; plant roots grow every which way. Without gravity the plant doesn’t know what is up or down. There is no rising or setting sun, just a 24 hour a day grow light.

Who came first: the farmer or the hunter-gatherer?
April 25, 2014 08:54 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

This is the question being asked by researchers from Uppsala and Stockholm Universities. And now with a genomic analysis of eleven Stone Age human remains from Scandinavia the researchers have concluded that the Stone Age farmers assimilated local hunter-gatherers who were historically lower in numbers than the farmers. There has been much debate as to when the transition between hunting-gathering and farming began. Now with DNA science being used on human material, scientists have a whole new way to learn about this sliver of time.

The Andes' pulsating rise
April 22, 2014 03:10 PM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

New research by Carmala Garzione, Earth and Environmental Sciences professor from the University of Rochester suggests that the Antiplano plateau in the central Andes Mountains along with the entire mountain range likely arose in a series of periodic rapid pulses instead of a more continuous gradual surface uplift. According to Garzione, "In geologic terms, rapid means rising one kilometer or more over several millions of years, which is very impressive."

The Evolution of Earth Day
April 22, 2014 10:29 AM - Allison Winter, ENN

Each year April 22nd, marks the anniversary of what many consider the birth of the environmental movement in 1970. Not only did this movement help pass landmark legislation like the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, and Endangered Species Act but it has also engaged more than 1 billion people who now participate in Earth Day activities each year.

Narcotics + Deforestation = Narco-Deforestation
April 21, 2014 02:12 PM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

Narco-Deforestation, a newly coined term for the destruction of sensitive forest ecologies in Central and South America has been identified as a greater threat to the South and Central American forests than other previously identified concerns such as legal logging and development. The drug traffickers are creating new autoroutes and airplane strips for greater access to and through the forests and jungles of the Central and South America. These new routes make it easier to transport drugs from Mexico to South America and vice-versa.

That sinking feeling on the Mississippi Delta
April 21, 2014 09:49 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

Every engineering control has its drawbacks. As communities upstream of the Mississippi Delta continue to emplace dams and other flood control measures to prevent community flooding, less sediment is pulled from the lands upstream. Flood control measures have eliminated about half of the annual supply of marshland sediment to the Mississippi Delta. The existing soils continue to compact and sink without sediment replenishment. But researchers have found that the river’s supply of sand, the key ingredient used by engineers for rebuilding, will remain constant for many centuries.

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