Plant With Purpose

With over 23 million trees planted since 1984, Plant With Purpose programs and activities are designed to foster long-term impact by equipping families to use their own God-given abilities to address the problems they face. Through an integrated approach to community development, they work to get at the roots of three facets of poverty—environmental, economic, and spiritual.

How is this possible? Plant With Purpose’s programs help families to increase farm yields, heal damaged ecosystems, improve nutrition, increase household savings, and provide greater economic opportunity. Combined, this integrated program solves two major issues facing the world today: environmental degradation and rural poverty.

There are a variety of ways to get involved with Plant With Purpose including sponsorship, internships, fellowships and volunteering. Visit their website: https://www.plantwithpurpose.org/ to learn more about how you can get involved!

Hot Solar Cell

As posted in the MIT Technology Review earlier this year, we are developing a new “hot solar cell” technology.
By converting heat to focused beams of light, a new solar device could create cheap and continuous power.

Solar panels cover a growing number of rooftops, but even decades after they were first developed, the slabs of silicon remain bulky, expensive, and inefficient. Fundamental limitations prevent these conventional photovoltaics from absorbing more than a fraction of the energy in sunlight.

But a team of MIT scientists has built a different sort of solar energy device that uses inventive engineering and advances in materials science to capture far more of the sun’s energy. The trick is to first turn sunlight into heat and then convert it back into light, but now focused within the spectrum that solar cells can use. While various researchers have been working for years on so-called solar thermophotovoltaics, the MIT device is the first one to absorb more energy than its photovoltaic cell alone, demonstrating that the approach could dramatically increase efficiency.

Visit the full source article here!

Cora Ball

 

A hard truth to swallow, but according to Rozalia Project, we are eating our fleece! Rozalia Project has developed the Cora Ball microfiber catcher, the first human-scale, consumer solution to synthetic microfiber pollution in our ocean, lakes and rivers. Check out their successful Kickstarter Campaign here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/879498424/cora-ball-microfiber-catching-laundry-ball

The single biggest pollution problem facing our ocean is microfiber: trillions of pieces of tiny fibers flowing into the ocean – every time we use our washing machines. Our clothing is breaking up, sending this microfiber (made of plastic and chemical-covered non-plastics) out with the drain water – just one fleece jacket could shed up to 250,000 pieces per garment per wash [source]. New York City, alone, could have 6.8 billion microfibers flowing into its harbor every day. We are all contributing to this problem. Learn more about the problem of microfiber pollution herehttp://rozaliaproject.org/stop-microfiber-pollution/

Eden Reforestation Projects

Eden Reforestation Projects, a California Registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, reduces extreme poverty and restores healthy forests in Haiti, Madagascar, Ethiopia, and Nepal by employing local villagers to plant millions of trees every year.

Eden currently has projects in countries, with 139,897,936 trees planted over 1,398,979 workdays created with 1176 members as of September 2017!

The destruction of healthy forest systems causes so many different problems. Trees provide a habitat for animals, purify water sources, control flooding and erosion and help to replenish the soil with nutrients needed for farming. When farmers can’t grow anything their farms fail and they have no option but to move to the overcrowded cities looking for work. Often they have to resort to selling themselves or their families into slavery just to survive.

Eden has started by hiring the local villagers to plant trees. This gives them a decent income so they can provide for their families again. As the reforestation effort goes on, healthy forests begin to emerge and all the negative effects of deforestation begin to disappear.

Find out more about how you can get involved with Eden Reforestation Projects online!

 

 

OBRIST C-Transformer

Let us welcome the “OBRIST C-Transformer.” It is a machine that founder Frank Obrist says “will help nature do what nature does best. Just a little bit faster. For our future.”

Although the machine is in prototype, the team has offered details on how it will operate: “Navigating through the forest, the OBRIST C-Transformer will char trunks of old trees and dig the biochar into the forest soil, binding its carbon. This very fertile soil will become the nursery for fresh tree seeds to that new vegetation can immediately start to grow. It will also have the capability to plant new trees within the fertile soil that is created.

Obrist has stated that they work closely with permaculture experts and scientists who continuously make sure that the natural balance of the environment is maintained. He says they also use a “thrice-conducted spiral route” for the OBRIST C-Transformer that will ensure every area will only be prepared and processed once every 45 years. They offer a video explanation and further details to answer some of our immediate questions.

Go through their “choose-your-own-adventure” style FAQ section and start the conversation by sharing your ideas! They are openly admitting that there are some issues still needing to be resolved. You can also check out input from other people.

Check out this project online and decide how you would like to get involved. Watch over, support the OBRIST C-Transformer  Crowdfunding project that seeks to protect our world and humanity.

Graphene-based Seawater Sieve

A UK-based team of researchers has created a graphene-based sieve capable of removing salt from seawater.

The sought-after development could aid the millions of people without ready access to clean drinking water.

The promising graphene oxide sieve could be highly efficient at filtering salts, and will now be tested against existing desalination membranes.

It has previously been difficult to manufacture graphene-based barriers on an industrial scale.

Reporting their results in the journal Nature Nanotechnology, scientists from the University of Manchester, led by Dr Rahul Nair, show how they solved some of the challenges by using a chemical derivative called graphene oxide.

Isolated and characterised by a University of Manchester-led team in 2004, graphene comprises a single layer of carbon atoms arranged in a hexagonal lattice. Its unusual properties, such as extraordinary tensile strength and electrical conductivity, have earmarked it as one of the most promising materials for future applications.

But it has been difficult to produce large quantities of single-layer graphene using existing methods, such as chemical vapour deposition (CVD). Current production routes are also quite costly.

On the other hand, said Dr Nair, “graphene oxide can be produced by simple oxidation in the lab”.

He told BBC News: “As an ink or solution, we can compose it on a substrate or porous material. Then we can use it as a membrane.

“In terms of scalability and the cost of the material, graphene oxide has a potential advantage over single-layered graphene.”

(Visit the source article via BBC news online!)

Stand for Trees

 

Stand For Trees. Think of it as a global, grassroots intervention to halt deforestation.

Stand For Trees empowers everyday citizens – all of us – to take direct action to protect endangered forests and reduce the impacts of climate change.

Every time you buy a Stand For Trees Certificate, you help local forest communities around the world keep a specific forest standing and prevent a tonne of CO2 from entering the earth’s atmosphere.

You buy a Stand For Trees Certificate — a unique, high-quality, verified carbon credit that protects a specific endangered forest and offsets a tonne of CO2 from entering the earth’s atmosphere. Because of your purchase, forests are left standing to do what they do best — store carbon, produce oxygen, provide habitat, and support local communities.

Stand For Trees Certificates are high-quality verified carbon credits based on the proven REDD+ model and meet the rigorous standards set by the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS), each of which is a Verified Carbon Unit (VCU) issued by VCS. Further, all Stand for Trees projects have attained or are committed to attaining verification to the Climate Community and Biodiversity Alliance standard, a partnership of leading NGOs that includes CARE, The Nature Conservancy, and The Rainforest Alliance. The credits are registered on the world’s largest environmental registry services provider, Markit, and meet Code REDD’s peer-reviewed international Code of Conduct.

What if we all stood up for trees and saved a tonne? The term ‘tonne’ represents a metric ton – a unit of measurement equal to approximately 2,205 pounds or 1,000 kilograms. That’s a lot of CO2 that would otherwise be released into air, contributing to the man-made greenhouse gases that are accumulating and accelerating climate change in our lifetimes.

Visit Stand for Trees online for more information!

ReTree

ReTree (verb): the act of replenishing the earth’s tree supply to help reverse climate change.

The mission of ReTree is to inspire people to help reverse climate change, one tree at a time. ReTree wants to plant 1 million trees in 2017.  And to accomplish this mission, ReTree will double the number of trees their donors plant for the entire year.

Our world is home to more than three trillion (3,000,000,000,000) trees! While that might seem like a large number, each day more than two and a half million (2,500,000) trees are destroyed. This constant and ongoing destruction has contributed (along with fossil fuel emissions) to a major issue for our planet: climate change.

When it happens naturally, as it did for millions of years, tree loss is a normal part of the cycle of life. A tree dies and another one grows. Now, with man’s interference and the loss of trees happening at an alarming rate, our planet can’t breathe. It was never designed to handle all that we’re putting it through. Climate change being at the top of the list.

Reducing factory and auto emissions might be the first thing you think of when tackling this global issue. Guess what? We don’t need fancy gadgets or millions invested in new technologies to fight climate change. There’s a simpler way to remove carbon dioxide from the air: trees!

Trees absorb CO2 from the air as they grow. Using energy from the sun, they turn the carbon captured from the CO2 molecules into building blocks for their trunks, branches, and foliage. This is all part of the carbon cycle and ReTree has created the simplest way to increase the number of trees and help reverse climate change.

Now multiply these results by thousands and millions of trees! We can’t stop climate change, but we can make an incredible impact, together, one tree at a time.

For more information visit ReTree online and start filling our forests!

Recycling Psychology

Although it may seem counter-intuitive–consider for a moment that recycling may have us incidentally wasting more, and not only because be we are using the wrong receptacles to recycle.

People used more cups and paper when recycling was an option versus when they had to put them in the trash. Researchers say people’s guilt for wasting is overridden by the good feelings for recycling.

As Shankar Vedantam, NPR social science correspondent explained when ask if recycling was ‘bad’: “No, recycling isn’t bad. It’s actually very good. But in fact, that’s where the problem lies. Recycling is so good that it makes us feel virtuous, and that can lead to problematic outcomes. Let me back up and explain. I was talking to Remi Trudel. He’s a marketing professor at Boston University. He told me he was having lunch at a restaurant with his colleague, Monic Sun, when they noticed something.

Then Remi Trudel continues: We noticed that people were just grabbing napkins, like, way more than they needed. And we started thinking is it because they feel, you know, that it’s OK because they’re going to be recycling it anyways? So then we decided to run some experiments to try to prove it. (Source: NPR)

Visit the NPR transcription of the interview here to find out what results came from their studies!

CEF FFT: (After reading the NPR transcript…) Do you think people who normally buy single-use cups and utensils would buy glassware or other long-lasting containers for food and drink if they knew about this potential pitfall of the psychology behind how we perceive the impact of our recycling?

(Photo Credit: Hiroshi Watanabe/Getty Images)

Seattle Bans Plastic Straws

Beginning July 1, 2018, restaurants in Seattle will no longer provide plastic straws and utensils to consumers. The reason for the ban is plain and simple: the waste that results from disposable plastic creates a cost that enterprises in the private sector do not subtract from the surplus value/price realization process but instead transfer to what the early 20th century British economist Arthur Cecil Pigou called in Economics of Welfare a “social cost.”

Seattle has decided to reduce these costs. This is the smart thing to do. The more matter and energy that is recycled in the city’s economy, the more it becomes like a ecosystem in its advanced or climax stage. American consumers waste an insane amount of drinking straws everyday (500 million!). The public, which includes natural services and goods (clean water, fresh air), has to pay for any kind of waste that cannot be recycled. Sadly, the ban will not included plastic straws in grocery stores. For the ban to be truly effective, it must be universal.
Think of how much plastic we could reduce every year if the biggest cities all committed to removing plastic straws from their economy!
Visit source article on The Stranger here!

(Photo Credit: Thomas Vimare)

Thanks to @mchllsong for the share!