Just How Clean is Natural Gas?
February 20, 2014 10:23 AM - S.E. Smith, Care2
Just the other day I hopped on a natural gas bus to head to downtown Oakland, enjoying one of the East Bay’s many environmentally-friendly public transit options. But how friendly was that bus to the birds, the bees and the trees?
Wind farms have longer operational life than previously thought
February 20, 2014 08:03 AM - ClickGreen Staff, ClickGreen
New wind farms have a longer economic lifespan than gas-turbine power stations, according to fresh research that also dismisses claims that ageing wind installations are a bad investment. The UK has a target of generating 15 per cent of the nation's energy from renewable resources such as wind farms by 2020. There are currently 4,246 individual wind turbines in the UK across 531 wind farms, generating 7.5 per cent of the nation's electricity.
The Race is On: Which State Will Be the First to Ban Microplastics in Cosmetics?
February 19, 2014 01:47 PM - Margaret Badore via Treehugger.com, Care2
Here’s a race to cheer for: New York and California are neck-in-neck to become the first state to ban microbeads in body wash and other cosmetics. The tiny plastic bits that serve as exfoliants in personal care products are so small that they slip through municipal wastewater treatment, and end up in lakes, rivers and oceans. Once introduced to the aquatic environment, they are ingested by fish and other wildlife.
Magma storage at Mount Hood compared to refrigerated peanut butter
February 19, 2014 09:10 AM - National Science Foundation
New research results suggest that magma sitting 4-5 kilometers beneath the surface of Oregon's Mount Hood has been stored in near-solid conditions for thousands of years. The time it takes to liquefy and potentially erupt, however, is surprisingly short--perhaps as little as a couple of months.
Trouble for Tea
February 19, 2014 08:58 AM - Ann-Marie Brouder, The Ecologist
Britain's favorite tipple faces big challenges over coming decades, writes Ann-Marie Brouder. A new report sets out the challenges and proposes sustainable solutions to keep the 'cup that cheers' on the nation's tables. Tea is big business: three billion cups of it are consumed every day, 4.8 million tonnes are produced annually, and in Britain two in three people drink it daily. And tea is much more than just a business - many people and cultures have a deep emotional attachment to the 'cup that cheers', and would be horrified at the idea that there was any threat to their beloved beverage.
Obama Moves Ahead to Increase Fuel Efficiency Standards for Heavy-Duty Vehicles
February 19, 2014 08:18 AM - Gina-Marie Cheeseman, Triple Pundit
President Barack Obama is moving ahead to increase fuel efficiency standards. While speaking at a Safeway distribution center in Maryland this week, President Obama cited the advantages of the fuel efficiency standards he put in place for both cars and light-duty vehicles, as well as heavy-duty vehicles.
Air travel gone batty!
February 18, 2014 01:37 PM - Jason Socrates Bardi, American Institute of Physics
By exploring how creatures in nature are able to fly by flapping their wings, Virginia Tech researchers hope to apply that knowledge toward designing small flying vehicles known as "micro air vehicles" with flapping wings. More than 1,000 species of bats have hand membrane wings, meaning that their fingers are essentially "webbed" and connected by a flexible membrane. But understanding how bats use their wings to manipulate the air around them is extremely challenging -- primarily because both experimental measurements on live creatures and the related computer analysis are quite complex.
Time to Start Looking Up: Crocodiles Can Climb Trees
February 18, 2014 12:41 PM - S.E. Smith, Care2
If I were being attacked by a crocodile, I’d high tail it for high ground, preferably in the form of a nice, sturdy tree to climb up. With their stocky, solid bodies, crocodiles don’t look like they’re adapted for tree-climbing, and I figure I’d be pretty safe. As it turns out, though, I might be making a very poor life choice: a new study shows that crocodiles, despite all odds, can and do climb trees.
Fracking residual waters
February 18, 2014 09:40 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN
As fracking amongst Marcellus Shale in the northeastern part of the United States increases so does the concern over its process. Fracking is done utilizing a hydraulic fracturing process, which pumps a high-pressure mixture of water, chemicals and sand deep into the sedimentary formations to extract naturally occurring gas. The resultant wastewater is then stored in large impoundment ponds and closed container tanks until it can be piped to wastewater treatment plants. Once cleaned it is discharged into local streams or trucked to Ohio to be pumped deep down into another injection well or into another fracking operation.
One-in-five products not complying with energy saving claims
February 18, 2014 08:08 AM - ClickGreen Staff, ClickGreen
One in five energy-using products across Europe do not match their energy efficiency claims, according to the Energy Saving Trust. This follows findings from European Commission-funded research which revealed that up to 20 per cent are non-compliant with energy efficiency standards, such as energy labeling. According to estimates, this is leading to around ten per cent of the potential energy savings stated being lost by millions of products across Europe, including ovens, fridges, washing machines, dishwashers, televisions and computers.