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Pollution

Study sees threat from big-particle pollutants
May 14, 2008 08:15 AM - Reuters

On days when there is a lot of dust and other large-particle pollutants in the air, slightly more elderly people go to hospital emergency rooms with heart problems, U.S. researchers said on Tuesday. There was also an increase in hospital visits by elderly patients complaining of respiratory illnesses when "coarse," or large, particle pollution was plentiful, although the rise was not significant, the researchers said.

Carbon monoxide aids shift from active infection to a drug-resistant dormant TB infection
May 13, 2008 09:04 AM - University of Alabama at Birmingham

A toxic gas present in air pollution and tobacco smoke plays a significant role in triggering tuberculosis infection, according to a new study from researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). The UAB study focused on carbon monoxide (CO), a colorless, odorless gas present in tobacco smoke, and vehicle and manufacturing plant emissions. Also, CO is produced naturally in brushfires and volcanic gas.

Clearing the Air on Liquid Natural Gas (Updated)
May 12, 2008 09:08 AM - , Triple Pundit

Every month when I see the magazine Seed in my mailbox I can’t wait to sit down and read it. This month I found a DVD inside the magazine with the oil company Shell’s short movie, Clearing the Air on it. My attention peaked, and I watched the movie. Clearing the Air is a fictional account of the development of gas to liquid (GTL) or liquid natural gas (LNG). The California Energy Commission defines LNG as “fuels that can be produced from natural gas, coal, and biomass using a Fischer-Tropsch chemical reaction process.” However, in the movie LNG is used to refer to converting natural gas into liquid for fuel.

Koalas Under Threat From Climate Change
May 9, 2008 09:26 AM - Australian Academy of Science

New research shows increased temperatures and carbon dioxide levels are a threat to the Australian national icon, the koala. Professor Ian Hume, Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science, and his students from the University of Sydney have been researching the effects of CO2 increases and temperature rises on eucalypts.

Kick the oil habit and make your own ethanol
May 9, 2008 07:00 AM - Reuters

A new company hopes drivers will kick the oil habit by brewing ethanol at home that won't spike food prices. E-Fuel Corp unveiled on Thursday the "MicroFueler" touting it as the world's first machine that allows homeowners to make their own ethanol and pump the brew directly into their cars.

High fuel prices could slash US emissions.
May 8, 2008 08:59 AM - New Scientist

HIGH gasoline prices could lead to a dramatic saving in US greenhouse-gas emissions. That’s the conclusion of economists in the US, who suggest high fuel prices are turning consumers off SUVs and onto smaller, more fuel-efficient vehicles. What’s more, car owners are predicted to cut back on driving in order to save money. Together, these changes in consumer behaviour could make an important dent in the US contribution to global warming, reducing annual carbon dioxide emissions by tens of millions of tonnes per year. The impact will be dramatic, says Chris Knittel, an economist at the University of California, Davis, who was involved in one of the studies.

Airline emissions 'far higher than previous estimates'

The aviation industry's failure to curb its soaring carbon emissions could lead to the "worst case scenario" for climate change, as envisaged by the United Nations. An unpublished study by the world's leading experts has revealed that airlines are pumping 20 per cent more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than estimates suggest, with total emissions set to reach between 1.2 billion and 1.5 billion tonnes annually by 2025.

Consumer group ranks companies on emissions efforts

Consumer companies are getting greener, but they are still quite carbon-intensive, according to a study to be released today. Nonprofit group Climate Counts will release its second annual rankings of 56 consumer companies today on how they measure greenhouse gas emissions, their plans to reduce them and how fully they disclose their efforts.

Petrify, liquefy: new ways to bury greenhouse gas
May 8, 2008 06:58 AM - Reuters

Turn greenhouse gases to stone? Transform them into a treacle-like liquid deep under the seabed? The ideas may sound like far-fetched schemes from an alchemist's notebook but scientists are pursuing them as many countries prepare to bury captured greenhouse gases in coming years as part of the fight against global warming.

China says Beijing Olympics "basically" carbon neutral
May 8, 2008 04:43 AM - Reuters

This summer's Beijing Olympics will be "basically" carbon neutral thanks to a series of energy saving measures such as the use of solar power and an afforestation program, a senior official said on Thursday. Technology Minister Wan Gang said that the event was expected to generate 1.18 million tonnes of carbon, in part because so many athletes and spectators were traveling long distances.

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