Flower-like wave energy turbines could power the coasts of Japan

Posted on Friday, October 13th, 2017

Along Japan’s coasts are structures called tetrapods. These pyramid-shaped concrete wave breakers serve to reduce the strength of crashing waves to prevent erosion in key spots along the shoreline. Researchers at Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST) have created a technology that, like the tetrapods, helps protect the shoreline, but also […]

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Brilliant zero-energy air conditioner in India is beautiful and functional

Posted on Thursday, October 12th, 2017

New Delhi-based Ant Studio made a zero-electricity air conditioner to combat the brutally hot summers in India’s capital. Built for a DEKI Electronics factory, this low-tech, energy efficient, and artistic solution to the sweltering heat harnesses the power of evaporative cooling. The innovative honeycomb-like installation is made with conical clay tubes that naturally reduce the surrounding […]

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The first ‘negative emissions’ carbon-capture plant is up and running.

Posted on Thursday, October 12th, 2017

On Wednesday, Iceland flipped the switch on the first project that will remove more CO2 than it produces. The plant is operated by Climeworks, which also opened the first commercial carbon-capture plant in Switzerland earlier this year. Here’s how direct-air carbon capture works: Giant turbines pull in huge quantities of air, hoovering up molecules of carbon dioxide […]

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New super concrete makes buildings strong enough to withstand magnitude 9 earthquakes

Posted on Thursday, October 12th, 2017

Recent natural disasters such as hurricanes in the Caribbean and earthquakes in Mexico have laid bare the need for more resilient buildings. Fortunately, researchers at the University of British Columbia (UBC) have developed a sprayable, eco-friendly concrete that makes the exterior of buildings as strong as steel and able to withstand unforeseen disasters. The material is called Eco-friendly Ductile Cementitious […]

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How chicken feathers could warm our homes

Posted on Wednesday, October 11th, 2017

Where there are people, there are chickens. Pretty much every country on Earth has poultry or their eggs on the menu. So, from Norway to New Zealand, and Cuba to Cambodia, chickens root around even the most isolated settlements, and fill giant farms in their thousands. One result of a huge chicken population is a […]

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When Indigenous People Control Their Own Land, It Protects Us All From Carbon Emissions

Posted on Friday, October 6th, 2017

Tropical rainforests controlled by indigenous people currently store 25% of the world’s carbon emissions. At the same time, “controlled” is usually something of a misnomer. While indigenous communities claim ownership of up to 50% of the world’s land, they’ve only legally secured about 10% of it.  Many aren’t able to prove–with evidence accepted by courts–that the areas […]

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Restoring U.S. Forests Can Help Solve Our Water Infrastructure Crisis

Posted on Thursday, October 5th, 2017

While Washington waits for the details of the Trump administration’s promised trillion-dollar plan to fix American infrastructure, there’s a critical need to focus on the infrastructure that carries our water. One step we can take now to shore up our human-made water infrastructure is to restore the great forests that offer natural infrastructure support. U.S. water infrastructure […]

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Innovations in desert and drylands farming

Posted on Thursday, October 5th, 2017

The global demand for food, water and energy is expected to increase by about 40 to 50 percent by 2030. This is driven in part by an expanding population, rapid urbanization, greater prosperity and changing diets. Meeting the increasing demand requires smarter, greener and more efficient food systems – especially as the climate changes […]

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How Two Brothers Convinced the Indonesian Government to Clean Up the World’s Most Polluted River

Posted on Tuesday, September 26th, 2017

On August 14, we set out to kayak down the world’s most polluted river, the Citarum River located in Indonesia, to document and raise awareness about the highly toxic chemicals in its waters and the masses of plastics floating on its surface. We paddled a total of 68km in two weeks on two plastic bottle kayaks from the village […]

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This air conditioner can cool a house without using any electricity

Posted on Tuesday, September 26th, 2017

An architecture firm called Ant Studio has partnered with company DEKI Electronics to create a cooling system that is electricity free. The installation is built into DEKI’s factory, and arranges hundreds of cone-shaped terracotta tubes into a honeycomb-like circle. Inhabitat reports that when kept wet, consistent evaporation lowers the temperature in the building from about 122 degree […]

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