Every refrigerator and air conditioner contains chemical refrigerants that absorb and release heat to enable chilling. Refrigerants, specifically CFCs and HCFCs, were once culprits in depleting the ozone layer. Thanks to the 1987 Montreal Protocol, they have been phased out. HFCs, the primary replacement, spare the ozone layer, but have 1,000 to 9,000 times greater capacity to warm the atmosphere than carbon dioxide.
In October 2016, officials from more than 170 countries met in Kigali, Rwanda, to negotiate a deal to address this problem. Through an amendment to the Montreal Protocol, the world will phase out HFCs—starting with high-income countries in 2019, then some low-income countries in 2024 and others in 2028. Substitutes are already on the market, including natural refrigerants such as propane and ammonium. [Source: https://www.drawdown.org/solutions/materials/refrigerant-management ]
A building envelope is comprised of the components that make up the shell of the building. The components separate the exterior from the interior of the building, and are designed to meet or exceed the needs of the specific application. The building envelope may also be described as what separates the interior areas that are temperature controlled (conditioned) space from exterior unheated (unconditioned) space. To break it down any area that is heated or air conditioned is considered a conditioned area where as any area that isn’t would be considered an unconditioned area. The building envelope must be designed with regard to climate, ventilation, and energy consumption within the building.
The many functions of the building envelope can be separated into three categories:
Support (to resist and transfer mechanical loads)
Control (the flow of matter and energy of all types)
Finish (to meet human desires on the inside and outside)
Scientists have created a method to convert carbon dioxide back into solid coal, a breakthrough that could change the ways carbon is removed from the atmosphere and permanently stored.
It’s one of several recently developed negative emissions techniques that seek to make carbon capture and storage cheaper, safer and more efficient. This particular method was developed by a research team led by RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia, and it uses a liquid metal electrocatalyst, containing nanoparticles of the rare-earth metal cerium, to convert the greenhouse gas into a stable, coal-like solid.
“While we can’t literally turn back time, turning carbon dioxide back into coal and burying it back in the ground is a bit like rewinding the emissions clock,” study co-author Dr. Torben Daeneke told The Independent. “To date, CO2 has only been converted into a solid at extremely high temperatures, making it industrially unviable.”
The Climate Crisis is a Health Crisis (Graphic from The Climate Reality Project)
The world’s leading scientists agree we must slash emissions by 2030 and keep global warming below 1.5 degrees C to avert a truly dangerous future. Carbon pollution poisons our air, water, and soil, threatening our health.
When we protect our planet, we protect ourselves. The Climate Reality Project is calling on the world’s leaders to ACT NOW.
It was great meeting @threesquaresinc at 24 Hours of Reality 2018 at Los Angeles Historic Park earlier this month.
As it so happens, film productions have a nasty reputation for wasting and improper disposal of materials. Enter Three Sqaures Inc.!
Each day of production they held a meeting (as seen above) where they debriefed the production crew on how to properly dispose of their waste on set.
We also had set up 4 options for dumpsters: compost, landfill, recycling and construction/demolition (as seen in photos). At one point when I found catering dumping excess food waste (non-meat) into the landfill I asked them to use the compost bags and use the compost dumpster. They replied that they green compost bags tended to tear open while they carried them so they used garbage bags instead. I offered the idea that they could use a milk crate to transport the compost bags and thankfully they listened and the new plan worked minimizing any spillage.
It was great to have the support of Three Squares Inc to help make our set as green as humanly possible!
Imagine if every production set were able to properly sort their waste–it would surely reduce the environmental impact of the modern entertainment industry.
Social Plastic Foundation’s mission is to rid the oceans of plastic and provide a lifeline to communities in need. They help some of the poorest communities globally to collect plastic before it becomes problematic ocean plastic. The Plastic Bank then sell this Social Plastic onto companies to use in place of virgin plastics. Social Plastic Foundation is a charity that provides ocean plastic & recycling awareness, along with training and support.
The Social Plastic Foundation is a charity established to support, enhance & grow the world’s Social Plastic recycling ecosystems. These are recycling communities in developing regions that utilize The Plastic Bank’s recycling reward & incentive platform to improve livelihoods while preventing ocean plastic.
The Social Plastic Foundation encourages us to help to increase the reward that recyclers receive. They believe this is how we make plastic waste too valuable to enter the ocean.
For more information and to contribute to their cause, visit:
Saturday, September 15th 2018 (9AM-NOON) is Coastal Cleanup Day 2018 for California. If you’re in southern California come join the volunteers from all around in one of the more than 50 inland and coastal locations in Los Angeles County.
Support for the event includes City of Santa Monica, California Coastal Commission, Coastal Conservancy and Heal the Bay among other organizations.
Register at healthebay.org/ccd/ to take part!
Why not get out to the beach or a state park and do some good for the planet?
Andrew Turton and Pete Ceglinski, two avid surfers, decided to quit their jobs to create a “Seabin” that would collect trash, oil, fuel and detergents.
The Seabin is a floating rubbish bin that is located in the water at marinas, docks, yacht clubs and commercial ports.
The Seabin moves up and down with the range of tide collecting all floating rubbish. Water is sucked in from the surface and passes through a catch bag inside the Seabin, with a submersible water pump capable of displacing 25.000 LPH (litres per hour), plugged directly into 110/220 V outlet. The water is then pumped back into the marina leaving litter and debris trapped in the catch bag to be disposed of properly.
Seabins can skim unsightly surface oils and pollutants. This location shared from @seabin_project had a boat with a fuel leak problem in the marina. Seabins are fitted with oil absorbing pads and it cleaned up the spill in no time.
Who knows what impact this technology could have in helping clean our ports and harbors! Visit their site to get a quote for single or multiple V5 Seabin units at http://seabinproject.com/pre-sales/
Narayana Peesapaty created edible spoons in Hyderabad, India, because he is fed up with plastic waste.
India is in the region of South Asia where it is culturally common to eat traditional meals with your hands, even among the wealthy who can trace the practice back to Ayurvedic teaching—and yet every year Indians use 120 billion pieces of plastic cutlery. Maybe investing in silver cutlery would stop them over-indulging in plastic.
Waste production is particularly problematic in large cities whose economic development precedes waste management infrastructure. China is an example of one of the world’s most densely populated regions that has come to create the world’s largest economy, though their record-breaking growth amounts to unprecedented pollution.
The individual efforts that CapitaLand encourages is something that the earth demands from all of us now. Statistics from the World Economic Forum cite that global plastic production has grown from 15 million tons in 1964 to 311 million tons in 2014- a number that is expected to triple by 2050, unless some sort of radical change takes place.
Peesapaty’s utensils should hasten that change. He began his business, Bakeys, in 2011, though it is gaining larger attention today because the business is crowd-funding with The Better India video to make money for investment in chopsticks and forks.
The edible cutlery is a bio-degradable option that has a shelf life of three years and decomposes within four-five days if not used. They even come in three different flavors to suit the food that they are served with: plain, sweet, or spicy.
Full original article written by Mica Kelmachter “India’s Edible Cutlery Points The Way For A Zero-Waste Future” as seen on Forbes.
Scientists have created a mutant enzyme that breaks down plastic drinks bottles – by accident as posted in the Guardian recently on April 16th! The breakthrough could help solve the global plastic pollution crisis by enabling for the first time the full recycling of bottles.
The new research was spurred by the discovery in 2016 of the first bacterium that had naturally evolved to eat plastic, at a waste dump in Japan. Scientists have now revealed the detailed structure of the crucial enzyme produced by the bug.
The international team then tweaked the enzyme to see how it had evolved, but tests showed they had inadvertently made the molecule even better at breaking down the PET (polyethylene terephthalate) plastic used for soft drink bottles. “What actually turned out was we improved the enzyme, which was a bit of a shock,” said Prof John McGeehan, at the University of Portsmouth, UK, who led the research. “It’s great and a real finding.”
The mutant enzyme takes a few days to start breaking down the plastic – far faster than the centuries it takes in the oceans. But the researchers are optimistic this can be speeded up even further and become a viable large-scale process.
“What we are hoping to do is use this enzyme to turn this plastic back into its original components, so we can literally recycle it back to plastic,” said McGeehan. “It means we won’t need to dig up any more oil and, fundamentally, it should reduce the amount of plastic in the environment.”
About 1m plastic bottles are sold each minute around the globe and, with just 14% recycled, many end up in the oceans where they have polluted even the remotest parts, harming marine life and potentially people who eat seafood. “It is incredibly resistant to degradation. Some of those images are horrific,” said McGeehan. “It is one of these wonder materials that has been made a little bit too well.”
Original link here: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/apr/16/scientists-accidentally-create-mutant-enzyme-that-eats-plastic-bottles