How to reduce your car's impact
March 25, 2015 09:02 AM - ClickGreen Staff, ClickGreen
As we all know, cars, trucks, and other motor vehicles aren’t the best friends of the environment. However, for many of us it’s simply not practical to depend strictly on mass transportation or make the switch to an all-electric vehicle. As a green-thinking member of society, where does that leave you? What should your stance be on driving with relation to sustainability?
Was there ever life on Mars?
March 25, 2015 08:05 AM - Roger Greenway, ENN
Did Mars ever support life? This question has intrigued us for centuries! We have had spacecraft on Mars for quite a while poking and analyzing soil and rocks and taking photos. Now NASA has new data which help answer these questions.
A team using the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite aboard NASA's Curiosity rover has made the first detection of nitrogen on the surface of Mars from release during heating of Martian sediments.
The nitrogen was detected in the form of nitric oxide, and could be released from the breakdown of nitrates during heating. Nitrates are a class of molecules that contain nitrogen in a form that can be used by living organisms. The discovery adds to the evidence that ancient Mars was habitable for life.
Are you getting enough Zinc in your diet?
March 24, 2015 09:14 AM - Roger Greenway, ENN
Zinc is an important part of the human diet. You get it in Cashews, spinach, beef, shrimp, flax seed, Oysters, garlic, lima beans peanuts, turkey, Salmon, Pork, Brown rice and other foods. These are not listed in any particular order.
Zinc, is an important mineral in human health, that appears to affect how the immune system responds to stimulation, especially inflammation, new research from Oregon State University shows.
Zinc deficiency could play a role in chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, cancer and diabetes that involve inflammation. Such diseases often show up in older adults, who are more at risk for zinc deficiency.
“When you take away zinc, the cells that control inflammation appear to activate and respond differently; this causes the cells to promote more inflammation,” said Emily Ho, a professor and director of the Moore Family Center for Whole Grain Foods, Nutrition and Preventive Health in the OSU College of Public Health and Human Sciences, and lead author of the study.
United Nations warns on pesticides
March 23, 2015 09:55 AM - EurActiv
The UN's International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) said Friday (20 March) that three pesticides, including the popular weed killer Roundup, were "probably" carcinogenic and two others, which have already been outlawed or restricted, were "possibly" so.
IARC classified the herbicide glyphosate – the active ingredient in Roundup – and the insecticides malathion and diazinon as "probably carcinogenic" on the basis of "limited evidence" of cancer among humans.
Massive marine sanctuary created in the Pacific
March 22, 2015 09:47 AM - Tex Dworkin, Care2
Mutiny on the Bounty is a tale about the Royal Navy ship Bounty. On April 28, 1789, Fletcher Christian led sailors in a mutiny against their captain, Lieutenant William Bligh. So the story goes, the captain was set afloat in a small boat along with crew members who were loyal to him, while the mutineers settled on Pitcairn Island or Tahiti and burned Bounty off Pitcairn to avoid detection.
Today Pitcairn island’s population is about 50 people, including descendants of Fletcher Christian, and the surrounding waters where the Bounty supposedly went down in flames has just become the world’s largest contiguous ocean reserve.
This is great news for the sanctity of the Pacific ocean and its inhabitants.
Burmese Pythons are killing the rabbits in the Florida Everglades
March 21, 2015 10:34 AM - Roger Greenway, ENN
How exactly DID Burmese Pythons get so numerous in the Everglades? Were they released by owners who didn't want them and they found they liked the ecosystem?
Nearly 80 percent of radio-tracked marsh rabbits that died in Everglades National Park in a recent study were eaten by Burmese pythons, according to a new publication by University of Florida and U.S. Geological Survey researchers.
A year later, there was no sign of a rabbit population in the study area. The study demonstrates that Burmese pythons are now the dominant predator of marsh rabbits, and likely other mid-sized animals in the park, potentially upsetting the balance of a valuable ecosystem.
Stinging nettle chemical improves cancer drug
March 20, 2015 02:20 PM - University of Warwick
A cancer drug could be made 50 times more effective by a chemical found in stinging nettles and ants, new research finds. Researchers at the University of Warwick found that when the chemical, Sodium Formate, is used in combination with a metal-based cancer treatment it can greatly increase its ability to shut down cancer cells.
Road kill: Recommendations to protect biodiversity
March 20, 2015 08:43 AM - Michelle Kovacevic, SciDevNet
Governments and donors must pay more attention to the environmental impact of road networks to limit their “devastating” effect on ecosystems, a study on global infrastructure expansion has warned. Road construction opens a “Pandora’s box” of negative impact, according to the authors of the paper, published this month in Current Biology. These include deforestation, animals hunted to extinction, land grabs by speculators betting on development, and wildfires.
NASA using space radar to track groundwater pollution risks
March 20, 2015 05:25 AM - Roger Greenway, ENN
Water is our most precious natural resource. Without clean water to drink human populations cannot exist. But our water supplies are under constant assault from anthropogenic pollution.
When pollutants get into groundwater, they can stay there for decades. Cleanup efforts are difficult, expensive and not always successful. It would be better to protect groundwater from contamination in the first place, but risks to groundwater are moving targets. Although unchanging factors such as porous soil or shallow aquifer depth play a role, the greatest risk comes from the source of the pollutants: people. And people are always moving. A growing city, in particular, usually means a growing threat to groundwater quality. To lock on to the moving target of groundwater risk, planners worldwide need up-to-date information on how people are changing the land surface.
Arctic sea ice continues to shrink
March 19, 2015 02:20 PM - World Wildlife Foundation
Arctic sea ice shrank to the lowest winter extent ever recorded, according to data released today by the US-based National Snow and Ice Data Center. The record-low ice level follows earlier news that 2014 was the warmest year since record keeping began.
An unusually warm February in parts of Alaska and Russia contributed to the record ice low. The winter reach of Arctic ice decreased 1.1 million square kilometres compared to the average maximum from 1981 to 2010. This represents an area more than twice the size of Sweden.
"This is not a record to be proud of. Low sea ice can create a series of reactions that further threaten the Arctic and the rest of the globe," said Alexander Shestakov, Director, WWF Global Arctic Programme.