The Benefits of a Low-Carbon Future
September 27, 2007 08:45 AM - Janet L. Swain, Worldwatch Institute
Yesterday, we weighed in on the need for stronger leadership on climate change from the United States and China in light of this week’s landmark meetings at the UN and White House. Today, we’ll provide a run-down of the benefits of addressing climate change—and what we stand to lose if we don’t.
The Stern Report, compiled for the UK government and released in late 2006, estimates that the costs of climate change under a "business-as-usual" scenario could equal the loss of 5 to 20 percent of gross world product each year. In contrast, the report puts the costs of efforts to avoid the worst impacts at only about 1 percent of gross world product. Since then, the International Energy Agency and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change have issued similar conclusions.
Ice-Based Airconditioning Takes Off In California
September 26, 2007 03:02 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN
SAN FRANCISCO - A company that makes an ice-based air-conditioning system is teaming up with a major public utility, PG & E, in California in a $10-million dollar project. The ice-based air conditioner uses cheaper nighttime electricity to make ice and then uses that ice for daytime cooling needs. The units cooling looks almost identical to a standard AC unit. The systems lowers peak daytime demand significantly, shifting the energy load up to 95%. The California Public Utilities Commission says permanent load shifting technologies deliver a number of benefits to both utilities and energy consumers, including added protection against shortages during heat waves and reduced reliance on the construction of new generation plants.
Email Overtakes Telephony
September 26, 2007 02:53 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN
NEW YORK - New research shows that e-mail has overtaken telephony as a communication tool in the workplace. Other electronic communication tools are also reaching high adoption levels.
"In today's corporate environment there is a myriad of communications tools available including desktop telephony, mobile telephony and e-mail, among others. However, our research indicates that end-users prefer to communicate using electronic media rather than voice services such as telephony," said Rob Lopez, managing director, Solutions at Dimension Data whose firm conducted the survey.
Report : Cancer Research and Information Impeded
September 26, 2007 02:19 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN
WASHINGTON — Allegations of mismanagement, industry influence, and suppression of whistleblowers at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the National Toxicology Program (NTP) are being investigated by Congress, and the director has temporarily stepped down. Today, OMB Watch released a report that further documents industry's attempt to restrict access to health and safety information produced by NTP.
U.S. and China Continue to Increase Cooperation on Vehicle Efficiency
September 25, 2007 08:50 AM - Dept of Energy
Rare albino ratfish has eerie, silvery sheen
September 25, 2007 08:14 AM - University of Washington
A ghostly, mutant ratfish caught off Whidbey Island in Washington state is the only completely albino fish ever seen by both the curator of the University of Washington's 7.2 million-specimen fish collection and a fish and wildlife biologist with more than 20 years of sampling fish in Puget Sound. Powerful jaws and grinding teeth able to crack the shells of crabs and clams require caution by researchers and fishermen who handle them. Ratfish don't bite divers or swimmers in the water, Reum says, but they get snappish when brought on board.
Arctic science outpost a refuge from the world
September 24, 2007 07:34 AM - Dmitry Solovyov -Reuters
NORTHEASTERN STATION, Russia (Reuters) - When Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev died and the Communist propaganda machine organized a mass outpouring of grief, Sergei Zimov hardly noticed.Back in November 1982, the young scientist was roaming around local shops and warehouses looking for the nails he needed to finish building a scientific research station high above the Arctic Circle that he had founded two years earlier.
NOAA, Indonesia Launch More Tsunami, Climate Buoys
September 23, 2007 12:29 PM -
NOAA image of Richard W. Spinrad (right), director of NOAA's Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, standing beside the tsunami buoy that will be deployed in the Indian Ocean. September 19, 2007 — Representatives of the governments and scientific communities of the United States and Indonesia marked a historic moment today in Jakarta, Indonesia, as the two countries jointly launched tsunami and climate-monitoring ocean buoys in the region. The ship embarked from Jakarta today to launch the second buoy to warn of approaching tsunamis and four buoys to monitor climate.
Yes, The Internet Saves Energy
September 23, 2007 11:57 AM - Bruce Mulliken, Private Landowner Network
Recently, in this column, I said this, “I don’t think there’s been a study, and I can’t prove it, but I think the Internet is one of the greatest energy saving inventions ever created.”
Well, now there IS a study to back up my claim. The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA (tm)) thinks the Internet saves energy too; and it’s substantial.
The just-released study commissioned by the CEA and conducted by TIAX LLC of Cambridge, Massachusetts, shows that using electronics to telecommute saves the equivalent of 9 to 14 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity per year – the same amount of energy used by roughly 1 million US households every year.
Marijuana Component Opens the Door for Virus That Causes Kaposi’s Sarcoma
September 21, 2007 06:04 PM -
PHILADELPHIA - The major active component of marijuana could enhance the ability of the virus that causes Kaposi's sarcoma to infect cells and multiply, according to a team of researchers at Harvard Medical School. According to the researchers, low doses of Δ-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), equivalent to that in the bloodstream of an average marijuana smoker, could be enough to facilitate infection of skin cells and could even coax these cells into malignancy.
While most people are not at risk from Kaposi's sarcoma herpes virus (KSHV), researchers say those with lowered immune systems, such as AIDS patients or transplant recipients, are more susceptible to developing the sarcoma as a result of infection. Their findings, reported in the August 1 issue of Cancer Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research, offer cautionary evidence that those with weakened immune systems should speak with their doctors before using marijuana medicinally or recreationally.