Bottlenose dolphins spotted in Canadian Pacific waters for the first time

April 20, 2018 by  
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Bottlenose dolphins typically reside in tropical or warm-temperate waters around the world — but researchers recently glimpsed a group of around 200 of the dolphins and around 70 false killer whales off northern Vancouver Island’s west coast in Canada. They said this sighting is “the only occurrence of common bottlenose dolphins recorded in Canadian Pacific waters” — and a warming trend could be to blame. In July 2017, Halpin Wildlife Research , working with Canada’s Department of Fisheries and Oceans and Department of Environment and Climate Change , documented the dolphins and whales. In research published this month in the journal Marine Biodiversity Records , the three researchers involved said the sighting “is the most northerly record” for common bottlenose dolphins “in the eastern North Pacific .” Related: A beluga whale living with dolphins learned to “speak their language” Lead author Luke Halpin said in a statement , “The sighting is also the first offshore report of false killer whales in British Columbia. To see the two species traveling together and interacting was quite special and rare. It is known that common bottlenose dolphins and false killer whales seek each other out and interact, but the purpose of the interactions is unclear.” Warming in eastern North Pacific waters between 2013 and 2016 could be the reason for the presence of the dolphins and whales. Halpin said he’s documented warm-water species in British Columbia waters since 2014, including a loggerhead turtle and a swordfish . He said, “With marine waters increasingly warming up, we can expect to see more typically warm-water species in the northeastern Pacific.” + BioMed Central + Marine Biodiversity Records Images via Gregory “Slobirdr” Smith on Flickr and the National Park Service

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Bottlenose dolphins spotted in Canadian Pacific waters for the first time

Scientists record a human-like conversation between two dolphins for the first time ever

September 12, 2016 by  
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Yasha and Yana, two Black Sea bottlenose dolphins , have been chatting it up lately and scientists have been listening in. The recordings can clearly be heard to be conversations , as the mammals pause to let the other finish and can string distinct “words” together to form sentences. The research confirms for the first time that dolphins use an advanced form of communication similar to humans. The study , published in the journal Mathematics and Physics , was performed at the Karadag Nature Reserve in Feodosia, Russia. The two dolphins were recorded speaking to each other in a pool at the reserve and the analysis of their conversation was fascinating. Dr. Vyacheslav Ryabov, lead researcher of the study, stated: “Essentially, this exchange resembles a conversation between two people.” Related: Why the Feds want to ban swimming with dolphins in Hawaii A series of pulsed clicks were produced by each mammal , each distinct and representing a phoneme or word in the dolphin language. These pulses were strung together like sentences and it was clear both Yasha and Yana waited for the other to finish before responding. “This language exhibits all the design features present in the human spoken language, this indicates a high level of intelligence and consciousness in dolphins, and their language can be ostensibly considered a highly developed spoken language , akin to the human language,” explained Dr. Ryabov. Dolphins are already known to produce more than one thousand types of distinct whistles to communicate with one another, but the new evidence points to particularly advanced behavior in the form of a one-on-one, back and forth conversation. At this point in time, we still do not understand the content of their communication, but the researchers say this is clearly the next step to take. Via The Telegraph Images via Pixabay ( 1 , 2 )

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Scientists record a human-like conversation between two dolphins for the first time ever

North Korea requests international aid after typhoon kills 133 and displaces thousands

September 12, 2016 by  
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North Korea’s official state media reported Sunday that heavy rains from Typhoon Lionrock caused severe flooding in the northeast region of the country , killing at least 133 people and leaving hundreds more missing. Reportedly, some 140,000 people have been displaced from their homes, and the effects of the disaster may continue to spread. For the first time in ages, the secretive nation has issued a plea for help from those outside its carefully protected borders. In a broadcast on Sunday, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported the country’s “heaviest downpour” since 1945 after Typhoon Lionrock triggered flooding in Musan and Yonsa counties and Hoeryong City in North Hamgyong province. The massive storm surge reportedly left “tens of thousands” of buildings destroyed and people homeless and “suffering from great hardship,” according to KCNA. The gravity of the disaster has been confirmed in a report by the United Nations. Related: Typhoon Lionrock drenches Japan, leaving at least 10 dead Bradley Williams, a international relations professor at City University in Hong Kong, told CNN the areas hit hardest by the flooding are known to be impoverished, and are the locale of prison camps and forces hostile to the regime there. KCNA’s report claimed Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK) issued a public appeal to party members and service personnel of the Korean People’s Army to aid in the recovery efforts. Williams suspects that the call for flood relief assistance may not actually benefit those suffering the storm’s effects, but will instead be channeled into efforts to protect the regime and prevent social uprising. Red Cross rescue teams are responding to North Korea’s plea, but it remains to be seen whether the international community will respond. Via CNN Lead image via  Nasa Goddard Rapid Response Team , images via DPRK HCT Joint Assessment Team ,  United Nations  

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North Korea requests international aid after typhoon kills 133 and displaces thousands

Vincent Callebauts Botanic Center fights urban smog and harvests clean energy

September 12, 2016 by  
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Despite its garden-inspired name, the Botanic Center in Brussels was built in 1977 from 274 identical concrete modules with nary a plant in sight. Architect Vincent Callebaut’s envisioned renovation , which he calls “metamorphosis,” transforms the building into a new symbol of sustainability for the city. “Our ambitions are as follows: to imagine a vegetal envelope on the three façades of the Botanic Center; to bring biodiversity back into the heart of the City; and with the help of botanists, to select plants that will color the building according to seasons,” writes Callebaut. The design calls for 274 planter beds with overhanging and climbing plants installed onto the 274 existing concrete models. Drip irrigation would be used to water the beds and maintenance need only be performed twice a year. Callebaut estimates that the 10,000-plant facade and green roofs could capture close to 50 tons of carbon dioxide a year and improve building insulation. Related: Futuristic oceanscapers are floating villages 3D-printed from algae and plastic waste In keeping with his theme of metamorphosis, Callebaut topped the proposed Botanic Center renovation with a “Chrysalis,” a lightweight structure made of arched glulam and steel cables. The curved addition can play host to a variety of programming and overlooks city views through large glazed openings. Twelve “gills” on the roof extend southwards to help improve solar exposure for the 600-square-meter photovoltaic array on the roof. Over 40 vertical axis wind turbines are also located atop the Chrysalis and could generate 32,340 kWh per year. Callebaut estimates that the total annual output of renewable energies could reach 128,340 kWh per year, enough to cover part of the existing building’s needs or ensure self-sufficiency for the Chrysalis’ new spaces. + Vincent Callebaut Images via Vincent Callebaut

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Vincent Callebauts Botanic Center fights urban smog and harvests clean energy

Airstream’s new Basecamp is a tiny house you can tow practically anywhere

September 12, 2016 by  
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Developed over the course of nearly a decade in collaboration with automotive designer Bryan Thompson, Basecamp was created for both the weekend warrior and the experienced long haul traveler. Like the original Airstream, the compact travel trailer is built with a sleek aerodynamic exterior rugged enough to withstand the elements and diverse terrain. “With its lighter weight and easier towing experience, Basecamp is a fully-loaded adventure waiting to happen,” said Airstream CEO and President, Bob Wheeler. “All you need to do is head out and decide whether to go right or left at the end of your driveway.” Related: Iconic Airstream gets a magnificent revamp to celebrate the National Park Service Centennial In spite of its small size, the Basecamp can accommodate a variety of functions. The convertible rear space can be adapted for eating, sleeping, lounging, or storage. The kitchen includes a cooktop, stainless steel sink, and fridge. A bathroom is also onboard with a toilet and shower. A large window wraps around the rear side for panoramic views of the landscape. A wireless Bluetooth speaker is also integrated into the design. The base model weighs 2,585 pounds and has an MSRP of $34,900. Optional additions include an enclosed patio and rear tent that seamlessly attach to the Basecamp roof track. + Airstream Images via Airstream

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Airstream’s new Basecamp is a tiny house you can tow practically anywhere

Pesticide industry spending ‘hundreds of thousands of dollars’ to slow U.S. bee protection

June 17, 2016 by  
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Would it surprise you to hear that the pesticide industry is actively working to halt measures that would protect bees from dying in record numbers across the continent? A new report published by Friends of the Earth (FOE) this week lists the tactics the industry is using to get in the way of much needed federal and state legislation and, spoiler alert, there are a lot of them. Last month, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported that 44 percent of honeybee colonies nationwide died off last year, marking a sharp increase in the destruction that has a devastating trickle-down effect on American food crops. Yet, the pesticide industry still works to block protective legislation and it’s all because they stand to make a profit on the death of our important pollinators. For years, chemical researchers and entomologists have been building a case against pesticides, composed of overwhelming evidence that widespread use of the chemicals—primarily in agriculture but also in public parks and residential areas— threatens bee populations in a very real way. Without wild honeybees, the nation’s crops and food supplies are in danger , so many agencies at the federal and state level have considered programs to protect bees, ranging from pesticide bans to protected “honeybee corridors” to “pro-bee-iotics” that may protect the buzzing beauties from dangerous chemicals. Related: 44 percent of U.S. honeybee colonies died off last year FOE’s 29-page report ( PDF ) comes with an ominous title: “Buzz Kill: How the Pesticide Industry is Clipping the Wings of Bee Protection Efforts Across the U.S.” But, the severity of the language seems appropriate, given the report’s findings. Following an in-depth evaluation of continued efforts by the pesticide industry to interfere with or block protective programs for bee populations. The report says the industry is spending “hundreds of thousands of dollars” at the federal and state level to lobby against measures that would reduce or ban pesticide use, leading to weak legislation that does more to protect pesticide companies than bees. The FOE report also claims the pesticide industry has “infiltrated federal regulatory agencies” through employees of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Environmental Protection Agency who previously worked for different regulatory agencies and companies including Bayer, Syngenta, and Monsanto , which all profit from pesticide use. FOE also charges the pesticide industry with creating misinformation campaigns against bee-protecting legislation, by “directly funded or influenced science by donating to education initiatives and building strategic alliances with academics.” Despite the industry’s efforts, some states are making forward progress to protect bees. Earlier this spring, Maryland became the first state in the country to ban neonicotinoids, the class of pesticides with strong links to the decline in bee populations. Other types of pesticides harm bees , too, which means reducing pesticide use or restricting certain varieties is only one part of the puzzle when it comes to protecting bee populations. Federal and state lawmakers must be free to evaluate their options without the tainted influence of the industry that seeks only to profit from the destruction of our delicate ecosystem. + Friends of the Earth Images via Shutterstock ( 1 , 2 ) and Friends of the Earth

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Pesticide industry spending ‘hundreds of thousands of dollars’ to slow U.S. bee protection

A look into a Turkey sweatshops use of Syrian child labor to make ISIS uniforms

June 12, 2016 by  
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Syrian refugee children are working 12-hour shifts for a little over a dollar per hour to make ISIS uniforms in a Turkey sweatshop, according to The Daily Mail . The children, reportedly sent by their parents, work in a shop that makes uniforms, backpacks, and other military gear for the Syrian market. While the factory owner Abu Zakour concedes that school would be a better place for the children, he says the parents want their children to work. Complicating the issue is the language barrier and other social barriers that dissuade Syrian children from attending Turkish public schools.

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A look into a Turkey sweatshops use of Syrian child labor to make ISIS uniforms

James Cameron designs five huge flower-shaped solar arrays to power his wife’s sustainable school

May 24, 2015 by  
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Blockbuster director James Cameron has added a new entry to the code of the language of flowers . By gifting his wife, Suzy Amis Cameron, a “bunch” of five solar arrays shaped like giant flowers for her MUSE School in southern California, he not only demonstrated his love for her, but his love for the planet as well. Cameron designed the solar arrays himself over the course of three years. Just like sunflowers, they pivot to face the moving sun to maximize the solar energy they can absorb each day. At an unveiling ceremony for the Sun Flowers, as they are named, Cameron explained, “I thought we should try to do something that inspires because this is about kids. Once you capture their imagination and empower them, they can do anything.” READ MORE > Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “solar energy” , flower-shaped solar array , green schools , james cameron , James Cameron gives flower-shaped solar arrays to school , Muse School , solar design , solar panels

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James Cameron designs five huge flower-shaped solar arrays to power his wife’s sustainable school

Chocolate LEGO Bricks Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth and the Nerd in You!

August 14, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of Chocolate LEGO Bricks Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth and the Nerd in You! Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Akihiro Mizuuchi , Chocolate lego , eco design , green design , Lego mold , LEGOs , sustainable design

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Beautiful Red House Bursts From the Forest With its Eye-Catching Façade

August 14, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of Beautiful Red House Bursts From the Forest With its Eye-Catching Façade Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Daylighting , lakeside home NYC , modern rustic , New York Red House , Red House , rustic design , Ryall Porter Sheridan , standard materials , striking home , sustainable design , upstate New York , Woodland Retreat

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Beautiful Red House Bursts From the Forest With its Eye-Catching Façade

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