Food Waste Hurts Us All

Throwing It Away

Food waste has been gaining a lot of attention in the news, and statistics showing staggering amounts of food that is thrown out sparks a practical interest in how to save food and money from going to waste. One report featured by ABC News showcased the food practices of an average family of 4 and found that they typically threw away approximately 25% of their total monthly grocery bill, around the equivalent of 13 pounds of discarded food. That is a substantial amount to be thrown out, and when figuring that this is the norm for most families, it adds up… read more

10 Green Tech Trends to Watch in 2013

10 Green Tech Trends 2013

Over the last couple of years, we have seen a large number of green and clean tech concepts go from idea to prototype to finished product, and because of the many environmental challenges (and consequent opportunities) facing us, it seems as if that trend is set to continue in the near future. A revolution in green materials has been entering the consumer market, with products made from recycled and eco-friendly components appearing in everything from food packaging to automobile interiors, and many customers want to see more of that. Some of the innovations that could also have a big potential… read more

Solar Light Bulbs and Lamps Provide Safe Lighting

Evans Wadongo

Kerosene lamps pose many health risks and other hazards, but are still used in many areas where there is no electricity. Solar lighting provides a safe and efficient alternative, and many companies are taking the initiative and making durable solar light bulbs and lanterns that allow lighting without kerosene. Discovery News has compiled great samples of solar powered lights and their designers that are making a real difference in the daily lives of those who have access to them by eliminating dependence on harmful kerosene based lighting. Waterproof solar lanterns from Greenlight Planet in India have helped to replace some… read more

Straw Bale Urinals Create Compost at Public Events

luritonnoir1

How can event organizers deal with large amounts of urine from festival and concert attendees, without resorting to flushing it down the drain with a bunch of potable water? Taking into account that urine, while seeming to be waste, is considered to be liquid gold for fertilizing plants, and that compost is a very desirable addition to gardens and landscapes, the straw bale urinal idea may be a way to capitalize on both of those fronts. Sure, people can just urinate on the ground to put the nutrients in the ground, but when you multiply that by a factor of… read more

Biomimetics Inspire Design

Microscopic image

Biomimetics (n.) [bahy-oh-mi-met-iks] – The study and development of synthetic systems that mimic the formation, function, or structure of biologically produced substances and materials and biological mechanisms and processes. That word is probably not in your vocabulary, but it will be soon. Biomimetics is more than just a study/development of synthetics. It is literally catalyzing and designing the future in more ways than one. According to Tim McGee, Senior Biologist at the Biomimicry Group, this study represents a way to shape tomorrow. “Biomimetic materials have the potential to rewrite our story of stuff. For most of the materials we use… read more

Affordable Solar Options

Affordable Solar Options

The sun’s rays have long been utilized for energy. Though they pay for themselves in the long run, the upfront costs of installing solar panels can be steep. If you want the optimal effects of solar energy but cannot afford to solarize your whole home or business, there are other options that will produce sustainable power without as steep of a price tag. Financing and tax incentives are usually available for renewable energy installations. Instead of splurging for an entire line, you can also purchase individual panels and add to your solar collection when you have the opportunity. If you… read more

Anticipation Builds for the World Solar Challenge

tokai_challenger

The World Solar Challenge is a competition that tests the skills of both solar and non-solar electric powered cars. Taking place every other year, participants from around the globe partake in a race, with a 3000-kilometer route descending from Australia’s northern territory to its southern city of Adelaide. Beyond the excitement this event fosters, the route serves as a fertile testing ground where these energy-efficient trailblazers can endure real to life driving conditions. This year’s race will mark the introduction of four separate vehicle classes for which a car may qualify. Different classes will be evaluated on their speed, external… read more

New Technique Uses DVD Burner to Make Graphene Supercapacitors

Micro-supercapacitor

The next generation of supercapacitors could completely revolutionize energy storage devices, and a team at UCLA has developed a method for producing them with graphene, using a standard DVD burner. Supercapacitors exhibit the best characteristics of both batteries (high energy storage capacity) and capacitors (rapid charging and releasing of energy), and graphene, while considered a “wonder material” for those applications, has been a difficult one to work with. Graphene, essentially a pure carbon polymer, has a very high surface area (1500 square meters per gram), is an incredibly conductive superconductor, and is both flexible and durable. But previous to this… read more

There’s Power Beneath The Waves

Power Beneath the Waves

Deep ocean currents are powerful and constant movements of ocean water more than 400m below the surface. They occur due to density driven forces acting upon them including gravity. A new type of ocean power generator is being considered that could harvest this steady, reliable energy of the deep ocean currents, and a group of companies is working together to place the first 1 megawatt system on the seafloor. Companies are currently raising funds for the demonstration project, and they are looking into R&D funding from the U.S. Navy and the Department of Energy. The grid connections and system software used… read more

The Bioneers

The Bioneers

Hatched in 1990, the idea of the Bioneers, a word that was introduced by Kenny Ausubel, began to spring into action. Bioneers as defined, seek to uphold biological and cultural diversity, and take a more natural approach to the scientific and medicinal fields. Also biomimicry, or going back to nature as the model for problem solving, is the school of thought. Bioneers include a group of earth aware, educated individuals demanding change and examining new and justifiable ways of arriving at solutions. Initially, Bioneer efforts were interested in native cultural and bio-diversification, sustainable farming and conservation. Bioremediation, or naturally dealing with… read more