Plastic-Eating Bacteria: Where the Technology Stands

May 28, 2018 by  
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Two years ago, Japanese scientists made headlines when they announced they had … The post Plastic-Eating Bacteria: Where the Technology Stands appeared first on Earth911.com.

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Plastic-Eating Bacteria: Where the Technology Stands

Plastic-Eating Bacteria: Where the Technology Stands

May 28, 2018 by  
Filed under Eco, Eco Tech

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Two years ago, Japanese scientists made headlines when they announced they had … The post Plastic-Eating Bacteria: Where the Technology Stands appeared first on Earth911.com.

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Plastic-Eating Bacteria: Where the Technology Stands

Ovie’s ‘Smarterware’ smart food storage aims to help reduce food waste

May 22, 2018 by  
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Around 40 percent of food goes to waste in America yearly, which costs the average family of four about $2,000 a year. Luckily, Chicago startup Ovie has an answer to this problem: Smarterware. Ovie’s Smart Tags, which keep track of food items’ freshness, can be clipped on food, placed on six-cup containers, or attached to bottles or take-out boxes. According to the company, their system essentially transforms any regular refrigerator into a smart fridge, but without the steep price tag — and they’re crowdfunding on Kickstarter right now. Ovie’s Smarterware aims to change how people eat by helping them keep track of their food’s freshness level. Rings around their Smart Tags light up as green, yellow or red to let people know if food is safe, about to spoil, or has gone bad. Using the technology is simple: you just press the button on a Smart Tag, and your food is tagged via Amazon Echo or an app. Related: New refrigerator camera takes aim at food waste The app aims to help users really take advantage of what’s in their fridge, letting them see items they’ve tagged or even search for recipes that will use the tagged ingredients. The app notifies users when the light ring hits yellow and offers recipe suggestions. Ovie also plans to send a personalized recap every month to let users know how they’ve been doing and provide tips based on their consumption trends. Ovie CEO and co-founder Ty Thompson said in a statement, “People don’t want to waste all of this food — it just happens. We’re busy, we invest time and resources to make a great meal, and then we end up throwing away a large amount of food simply because we forget about it. We wanted to help solve this problem by creating a product that would be simple to use and bring a more mindful approach to food storage .” You can snag early bird discounts on Ovie’s Kickstarter , which ends June 21. The company plans to start shipping in early 2019. + Ovie + Ovie Smarterware Kickstarter Images courtesy of Ovie

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Ovie’s ‘Smarterware’ smart food storage aims to help reduce food waste

These new electric trucks from Volvo could soon be collecting your garbage

May 17, 2018 by  
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Swedish multinational manufacturing company Volvo has revealed its two new electric truck models, designed with tasks such as delivery and refuse collection in mind. These electric trucks could replace those currently on the road for these services, vehicles that are a major source of diesel emissions in urban areas worldwide. “This opens the door to new forms of cooperation with cities that target to improve air quality, reduce traffic noise, and cut congestion during peak hours since commercial operations can instead be carried out quietly and without tale-pipe exhaust emissions early in the morning or late at night,” Volvo Trucks President Claes Nilsson said in a statement . Volvo’s new electric trucks seem well suited to European cities, many of which are moving towards reducing or even eliminating the use of internal combustion vehicles in the coming years. The newly revealed models also recognize the rising consumer demand for cleaner air, thus cleaner vehicles. “We believe that the technology today is mature when it comes to performance, range and weight in these type of applications in city use,” said Nilsson. Volvo plans to continue to develop new models of electric trucks going forward. Related: Volvo will only sell electric cars starting in 2019 One of the trucks, the Volvo FL Electric, is smaller than other models so as to better serve the needs of dense urban areas. “Today, each of our 300 conventional refuse vehicles emits approximately 31,300 kg carbon dioxide every year,”  Rüdiger Siechau, CEO of Stadtreinigung Hamburg,  said in a statement. “An electrically powered refuse truck with battery that stands a full shift of eight to ten hours is a breakthrough in technology.” Because of its electric engine, the Volvo FL Electric is able to deliver cargo inside a building without producing health-harming emissions. The silent engine also opens up new possibilities for serving cities. Volvo’s electric trucks follow its previous production of more than four thousand electric buses and their ongoing reconfiguration of its battery supply chain, which would ensure a more positive environmental impact. Via CleanTechnica Images via Volvo Trucks

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These new electric trucks from Volvo could soon be collecting your garbage

Levels of ozone-destroying CFCs are mysteriously rising

May 17, 2018 by  
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Globally banned by the Montreal protocol in 1987 for their ozone-destroying properties, chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) chemicals are experiencing a comeback. In recent years, levels of CFCs have increased suddenly and mysteriously. Now, scientists are racing to determine the source of the problem. U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) researcher Stephen Montzka discovered this unusual trend. “I have been doing this for 27 years and this is the most surprising thing I’ve ever seen,” he told the Guardian . “I was just shocked by it. We are acting as detectives of the atmosphere, trying to understand what is happening and why.” There is global concern that this unexplained CFC revival could do serious environmental damage. “If these emissions continue unabated, they have the potential to slow down the recovery of the ozone layer,” head of UN Environment Erik Solheim told the Guardian . “It’s therefore critical that we identify the precise causes of these emissions and take the necessary action.” After investigating several explanations, researchers now suggest that the new CFC production is taking place somewhere in East Asia . Related: Antarctic ozone layer shows “first fingerprints of healing” The second most damaging CFC chemical , CFC-11, has most notably been on the rise. It is possible that the investigation will lead to a shutdown of the CFC production even before the exact source is determined. “I have a feeling that we will find out fairly quickly what exactly is going on and that the situation will be remedied,” Montzka said. “Somebody who was maybe doing it purposefully will realize — oh, someone is paying attention — and stop doing it.” + National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Via The Guardian Images via Depositphotos (1, 2)

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Levels of ozone-destroying CFCs are mysteriously rising

NASA plans to send a helicopter to Mars

May 14, 2018 by  
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A small, autonomous helicopter could soon soar above the rusty rocks of Mars . Dubbed the Mars Helicopter, the rotorcraft is hitching a ride to the Red Planet as part of NASA’s Mars 2020 rover mission. The BBC said this could be the first test of “heavier-than-air aircraft on another planet.” “After the Wright Brothers proved 117 years ago that powered, sustained, and controlled flight was possible here on Earth, another group of American pioneers may prove the same can be done on another world,” NASA’s Science Mission Directorate associate administrator Thomas Zurbuchen said . The technology demonstration has been many years in the making; it started in 2013 at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). The Mars Helicopter weighs just under four pounds, with a fuselage about as big as a softball. It has twin, counter-rotating blades that will slice the air at nearly 3,000 revolutions per minute (rpm), which, according to NASA , is “about 10 times the rate of a helicopter on Earth.” Related: NASA unveils plan to make oxygen on Mars Solar cells will help the Mars Helicopter charge its lithium-ion batteries , and it’s equipped with a heating mechanism to survive frigid Martian nights. NASA is planning as many as five flights over a 30-day test campaign. The first flight could see the Mars Helicopter fly up to 10 feet and hover there for around 30 seconds. As it flies farther and longer in following tests, it could travel “up to a few hundred meters” and soar for around 90 seconds. JPL Mars Helicopter project manager Mimi Aung said in NASA’s statement, “The altitude record for a helicopter flying here on Earth is about 40,000 feet. The atmosphere of Mars is only one percent that of Earth, so when our helicopter is on the Martian surface, it’s already at the Earth equivalent of 100,000 feet up. To make it fly at that low atmospheric density, we had to scrutinize everything, make it as light as possible while being as strong and powerful as it can possibly be.” NASA describes the Mars Helicopter as a high-risk, high-reward project. The agency said in their statement if the technology demonstration doesn’t work, the Mars 2020 mission won’t be impacted — but if it does, “helicopters may have a real future as low-flying scouts and aerial vehicles to access locations not reachable by ground level.” + NASA Via the BBC Image via NASA/JPL-Caltech

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NASA plans to send a helicopter to Mars

How PwC is using VR to help ‘see’ the sustainable future

May 3, 2018 by  
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Megadrones, self-driving cars and 3D-printed buildings are in this virtual reality system’s plan for a future that has beat climate change.

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How PwC is using VR to help ‘see’ the sustainable future

How New Car Wash Technology Saves Water

May 2, 2018 by  
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By Megan Pantak As global temperatures continue to warm and … The post How New Car Wash Technology Saves Water appeared first on Earth911.com.

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How New Car Wash Technology Saves Water

Infographic: 9 Ways Flowers Protect the Environment

May 2, 2018 by  
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They’re decorative and often emit a pleasing fragrance, but flowers … The post Infographic: 9 Ways Flowers Protect the Environment appeared first on Earth911.com.

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Infographic: 9 Ways Flowers Protect the Environment

Guido Jouret of ABB: Where innovation meets automation

May 1, 2018 by  
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The CDO reveals innovations that include “putting software in things where software has never existed.”

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Guido Jouret of ABB: Where innovation meets automation

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