• Review: Smart Power Strips

    I’ve been testing a surging-protecting power strip called the Smart Strip by BITS. The Smart Strip works like this: it has a “Control Outlet” which controls six other outlets on the power strip. If you plug a computer into the Control Outlet, and it turns off or goes into sleep mode, the other “switched” outlets on the strip will be turned off. >> Read the Full Article
  • Insects Use Plants Like A Telephone

    Dutch ecologist Roxina Soler and her colleagues have discovered that subterranean and aboveground herbivorous insects can communicate with each other by using plants as telephones. Subterranean insects issue chemical warning signals via the leaves of the plant. This way, aboveground insects are alerted that the plant is already ‘occupied’. Aboveground, leaf-eating insects prefer plants that have not yet been occupied by subterranean root-eating insects. Subterranean insects emit chemical signals via the leaves of the plant, which warn the aboveground insects about their presence. This messaging enables spatially-separated insects to avoid each other, so that they do not unintentionally compete for the same plant. >> Read the Full Article
  • How Does Aspartame Damage Your Brain?

    Consuming a lot of aspartame may inhibit the ability of enzymes in your brain to function normally, according to a new review by scientists from the University of Pretoria and the University of Limpopo. The review found that high doses of the sweetener may lead to neurodegeneration. It has also previously been found that aspartame consumption can cause neurological and behavioral disturbances in sensitive individuals. >> Read the Full Article
  • Rising Sun for Electric Cars

    Is my sustainability work consonant with the gravity of the climate crisis and the urgency of the ecological challenges we face? At Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU), as a complement to our work on renewable energy hedges, we are working to transform energy use on campus. One project underway is a system of grid-tied electric vehicles (Vehicle to Grid or V2G) combined with a solar photovoltaic charging system and smart computer control. >> Read the Full Article
  • Google ends eco-search engine support

    Sydney-based Ecocho founder Tim Macdonald had an idea; build a search engine based on Google and Yahoo technology and use the ad revenue to plant two trees for every 1,000 searches, offsetting tons of carbon dioxide. However, the practice of "compensating users for viewing ads or performing searches, or promise compensation to a third party for such behavior" is a violation of Google AdSense policy and Google decided to pull support of the site, on Earth Day no less. Macdonald claims Google is not enforcing its rules to other "green" search engines such as Blackle, though Blackle is not making the same claims. >> Read the Full Article
  • Human warming hobbles ancient climate cycle

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Before humans began burning fossil fuels, there was an eons-long balance between carbon dioxide emissions and Earth's ability to absorb them, but now the planet can't keep up, scientists said on Sunday. The finding, reported in the journal Nature Geoscience, relies on ancient Antarctic ice bubbles that contain air samples going back 610,000 years. >> Read the Full Article
  • Scientists sequence GM papaya genome

    [BEIJING] Scientists have sequenced the genome of a genetically modified (GM) papaya, a step that could benefit both cultivation of the fruit and the understanding of fruit tree genomics. As the first GM virus-resistant fruit tree to be sequenced, the researchers also hope it will further the understanding of GM genomes and the effects of inserted genes. >> Read the Full Article
  • IDC Develops Eco-friendly Inflatable Solar Panel for Domestic Use

    As a leading sustainable product designer, Industrial Design Consultancy (IDC) is delighted to announce its latest product development; an inflatable solar collector called SolarStore. The SolarStore harnesses the sun’s natural energy to warm domestic water and can heat up to three full tanks of water per day at temperatures close to 80°C. >> Read the Full Article
  • EPA scientists complain about political pressure

    Hundreds of Environmental Protection Agency scientists say they have been pressured by superiors to skew their findings, according to a survey released Wednesday by an advocacy group. The Union of Concerned Scientists said more than half of the nearly 1,600 EPA staff scientists who responded online to a detailed questionnaire reported they had experienced incidents of political interference in their work. >> Read the Full Article
  • Green Electronics Made Not So Easy: How Companies Are Marketing EPEAT

    EPEAT, the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool, is like LEED certification for electronics; it monitors the environmental impact of electronics much like LEED monitors buildings. Products are ranked either bronze, silver, or gold, depending on how many of the 51 criteria they meet. Criteria include recycling programs for products, the labeling of plastic parts for recycling, the elimination of "environmentally sensitive" material, ENERGY STAR®, RoHS, and WEEE compliance, among others. Companies are taking a serious look at the certification now that at least 95% of federal agency electronic purchases must be EPEAT-registered. >> Read the Full Article