• Comment on DVD Review: Earth From The Air

    The newly released "Earth From the Air" DVD is a compilation of the fascinating photographs taken by photographer Yann Arthus- Bertrand on his extensive world travels. Creating an aerial portrait of the globe, Bertrand has flown over hundreds of countries, snapping beautiful and thought- compelling pictures along the way. The subject matter of the photographs ranges from industrial architecture to exotic animals to natural wonders to the human struggle, and each image is as compelling as the next. The photographer's goal is to inspire a deeper understanding and appreciation of Planet Earth in the face of the climate and population boom crisis, and he effectively reaches his audience through this DVD, supplementing his message with frequent written passages that elegantly fade into the screen in between scenes. Most feature statistics meant to, at best, elicit shock in the viewer, at worst, interest her. With blurbs like "20% of the world population consumes 80% of the world energy", "1.6 billion people are overweight (of which 400 million are obese), 820 million are chronically undernourished", and "1 in 4 species of mammal, 2 in 5 species of amphibian, 1 in 8 species of bird are endangered", Bertrand captures his audiences' attention in more ways than one. >> Read the Full Article
  • Are Aluminum Bottles Greener than Glass?

    Aluminum as a substitute for glass bottles has been inching its way into the consumer experience in the last few years, most notably in the US in the form of beer bottles from Anheuser-Busch and Iron City Beer, a popular regional brand founded in Pittsburgh. Coca-cola has also announced plans to roll out aluminum bottles in this country, though only in limited venues. >> Read the Full Article
  • Sun's Activity Cycle Linked to Earth Climate

    When the sun's weather is most active, it can impact Earth’s climate in a way that is similar to El Niño and La Niña events, a new study suggests. The sun experiences a roughly 11-year cycle, during which the activities on its roiling surface intensify and then dissipate. (One noted sign of a highly active period is the number of sunspots dotting the solar surface). The total energy reaching Earth from the sun varies by only 0.1 percent across the solar cycle. >> Read the Full Article
  • Are the deserts getting green?

    It has been assumed that global warming would cause an expansion of the world's deserts, but now some scientists are predicting a contrary scenario in which water and life slowly reclaim these arid places. They think vast, dry regions like the Sahara might soon begin shrinking. >> Read the Full Article
  • Exxon Plan to develop biofuel from algae

    Exxon Mobil Corp will invest $600 million over the next five to six years on trying to developing biofuel from algae, even though the oil major has said renewables will be only a small part of global energy supply. Exxon, placing its largest financial bet on renewable fuels, is forming a research and development alliance with Synthetic Genomics Inc, a privately held company that focuses on gene-based research, the company said on Tuesday. >> Read the Full Article
  • Treating Ballast Water Could Fight Invasive Species

    Ships that transport goods around the world are carrying some dangerous stowaways. So scientists are testing ways to kill these potential invaders before they can escape. >> Read the Full Article
  • What caused global warming 55 million years ago?

    A runaway spurt of global warming 55 million years ago turned Earth into a hothouse but how this happened remains worryingly unclear, scientists said on Monday. Previous research into this period, called the Palaeocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, or PETM, estimates the planet's surface temperature blasted upwards by between five and nine degrees Celsius in just a few thousand years. >> Read the Full Article
  • Declining Aral Sea: Satellite Images Highlight Dramatic Retreat

    Envisat images highlight the dramatic retreat of the Aral Sea’s shoreline from 2006 to 2009. The Aral Sea was once the world’s fourth-largest inland body of water, but it has been steadily shrinking over the past 50 years since the rivers that fed it were diverted for irrigation projects. By the end of the 1980s, it had split into the Small Aral Sea (north), located in Kazakhstan, and the horse-shoe shaped Large Aral Sea (south), shared by Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. >> Read the Full Article
  • Climate Bill Debate Postponed By Senate

    Legislation to slow climate change rolled into the Senate this week and almost immediately ground to a halt. After two days of hearings, Democratic leaders agreed to mothball the measure until September. They blamed a full schedule on health care reform and the president's Supreme Court nominee for the delay. >> Read the Full Article
  • Climate Talks End With Meager Promises

    International climate talks held in Italy this week ended with little progress. The rich industrial nations wouldn't promise to cut back their emissions in the near term. And China, India and the rest of the developing world wouldn't commit to cutting their emissions, ever. All nations of the world need to act to reduce the risk of a climate catastrophe. But so far, there's much more posturing than action. >> Read the Full Article