Climate change could kill Scandinavia’s iconic Christmas trees

December 19, 2014 by  
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  It looks as though climate change could kill the traditional Christmas tree in Scandinavian countries, as reduced snowfall is affecting the health of spruce trees there. New Scientist reports that snow is very important for the health of trees because it acts like a layer of insulation to protect their roots from the cold northern winters. Studying a stand of 47-year-old Norwegian spruce trees in Eastern Finland for two seasons revealed to the Finnish Forest Research Institute (FFRI) that a thinner snowpack had negative consequences for the trees. Sirkka Sutinen and fellow researchers from the FFRI simulated the effects of thin snowpacks and discovered that when thaws were delayed until mid summer, buds opened much later and created smaller needles. Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Read the rest of Climate change could kill Scandinavia’s iconic Christmas trees Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Christmas trees , Climate Change , conifer , coniferous trees , conifers , evergreen trees , evergreens , Finland , Finland evergreen trees , Finland snowfall , global warming , norway , Norway Spruce , reduced snowfall , scandinavia , Scandinavian , snow , snowfall , spruce bark beetle , spruce beetle , spruce tree damage , spruce trees , Trees

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Climate change could kill Scandinavia’s iconic Christmas trees

HOW TO: Prepare Healing Teas from Winter Trees

November 7, 2013 by  
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People have been using plants for both food and medicine for thousands of years, and most of us are probably quite familiar with several healing teas or infusions . Have you ever made peppermint tea to soothe an upset belly? Or steeped a cup of chamomile to calm jangled nerves and hopefully help you sleep? These are just a couple of plants that we have turned to for both help and mere enjoyment over the years, but many people don’t realize that certain trees can also be used to make beneficial drinks, especially over the colder months. Read the rest of HOW TO: Prepare Healing Teas from Winter Trees Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: birch , chaga , conifer tea , conifers , evergreen , evergreen tea , evergreens , pine , scurvy , spruce , tamarack , tree teas , vitamin c        

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HOW TO: Prepare Healing Teas from Winter Trees

Underwater Kites Could Harvest 64 Times More Power Than Wind Turbines

November 7, 2013 by  
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Kite photo from Shutterstock How can we generate more power from renewable sources without using massive plots of land for solar and wind farms? Go fly a kite . According to David Olinger , an associate professor of mechanical engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), tethered underwater kites could be used to generate large amounts of electricity by harnessing the power of ocean waves and currents. Olinger recently received a three-year, $300,000 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to develop this technology, and work is scheduled to begin in January. Read the rest of Underwater Kites Could Harvest 64 Times More Power Than Wind Turbines Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “clean energy” , current energy , energy harvesting , kite , kites , ocean , ocean energy , renewable energy , Technology , underwater kites , wave energy        

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Underwater Kites Could Harvest 64 Times More Power Than Wind Turbines

Old-Fashioned Steam Engines Could Solve Solar Energy Storage Problem

November 7, 2013 by  
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Australian engineers might have solved one of the biggest obstacles to scaling up solar energy — the lack of affordable storage technology that allows solar to be used at peak demand after the sun goes down. Their California-based startup Terrajoule is applying an older technology, namely steam engines, to build a storage system that could lower the cost to under $100 per kWh, which is less than 20 percent of what it costs for current battery storage systems. This new system will also last longer (it has a 25 year lifecycle), thereby eliminating use of the toxic and rare materials contained in batteries. Read the rest of Old-Fashioned Steam Engines Could Solve Solar Energy Storage Problem Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: concentrated solar power , distributed solar power generation , solar energy storage , steam engines , steam piston engines , storage system , Terrajoule        

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Old-Fashioned Steam Engines Could Solve Solar Energy Storage Problem

New Study Reports Man-made Noise Pollution Affects Birds and Plants

March 23, 2012 by  
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Noise pollution is certainly annoying, but does it actually cause any real harm? Several studies have shown that urban noise can have adverse effects on bird populations, causing them to change their songs and otherwise alter their behavior. Now researchers have learned that man-made noise can also have a ripple effect on some types of plants , like trees, as well. Because plants are stationary, many of them rely on animals and insects, like birds and bees, to pollinate them or to spread their seeds. So it follows that when bird populations are driven down by noisy human activity, for example, the trees that depend on those birds to spread their seed would also suffer. Read the rest of New Study Reports Man-made Noise Pollution Affects Birds and Plants Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: audubon , bird watching , birding , birds , coniferous trees , conifers , New Mexico , noise pollution , piñon pine , Pinyon Pine , Rattlesnake Canyon Wildlife Area , Trees , western scrub jay , Wildlife

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New Study Reports Man-made Noise Pollution Affects Birds and Plants

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