EPA Officially Declares Greenhouse Gases a Danger as Copenhagen Conference Begins

The U.S. signals its readiness to regulate carbon dioxide emissions; world leaders begin Copenhagen discussions on climate change

Today's symbolic but politically crucial move by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognizes greenhouse gases as a danger for humans and Earth alike. That would open the doors for new regulations on carbon dioxide emissions from vehicles, power plants and factories, according to the New York Times.

[ Read Full Story ]

Take Down Rampaging Elephants with Automatic Entangling Leg-Cords, Star Wars Style

A Mumbai engineer's "violent elephant control gear" will safeguard against beasts run amok

Who you gonna call when a normally placid pachyderm decides to act out? Enter Zachariah Matthew, a Mumbai engineer who created a remote-controlled immobilizing device to handle elephants on a rampage.

[ Read Full Story ]

World's First Osmotic Power Plant Goes Live in Norway

The groundbreaking plant produces about enough power to make a pot of delicious coffee

When it comes to harnessing the energy potential of the oceans, the Norwegians have no problem starting small. The world's first osmotic power plant opened today in Tofte, Norway, utilizing the properties of salty seawater to generate a whopping 4 kilowatts of electricity for the grid, or about enough to power a coffee maker. But the Norwegian company running the project, Statkraft, is a glass-half-full kind of company, claiming that eventually osmotic plants could draw half of Europe's electricity from the saltiness of the sea.

[ Read Full Story ]

Huge Texas Wind Farm's Turbines Will Be Made in China

A Chinese wind-turbine company strikes a deal to become the exclusive supplier for one of the largest U.S. wind farms

Clean tech has seen a boost as the U.S. pours government funding into renewable energy, and China looks set to reap much of the benefits. Latest example: a Chinese wind-turbine company has just become the exclusive supplier for one of the largest wind-farm developments in the U.S.

[ Read Full Story ]

Future Parking Lots Will Filter Disgusting Storm Water With Sponge-Like Concrete

The EPA is testing three types of porous pavement to keep pollutants out of underground water

Most parking lots may resemble a man-made wasteland even with cars sitting on top of them. But now they can serve a dual purpose by helping filter out pollutants in rainwater that might reach underground water sources.

[ Read Full Story ]

Japanese Team Crosses Australia, Takes Global Green Challenge

After nearly four days, 3,000km and lots of baking Australian sun, a team from Japan's Tokai University edged out 31 other competitors to bring home a solar victory in the 2009 Global Green Challenge

A team of solar-car scientists from Japan's Tokai University turned the intense rays of central Australia into victory in the 2009 Global Green Challenge. The team covered nearly 3,000km over four days in their solar-powered Tokai Challenger to claim first place among the Challenge's solar-vehicle field.

[ Read Full Story ]

Toyota Engineers Two New Flower Species to Offset Manufacturing Carbon

The car manufacturer creates two flower species to help counter CO2 created by Prius assembly

Toyota's rivals have long complained that the popular Prius hybrid has a less-than-green legacy due to its manufacturing process. Now the car maker has flashed its green thumb by creating two new species of flower that help offset the carbon emissions from the Prius plant in Japan.

The new version of the cherry sage plant can absorb harmful greenhouse gases, such as nitrogen oxide, through its leaves. And Toyota's variant of the gardenia acts as a natural humidifier by creating water vapor in the air, to help cool the factory grounds, reducing the energy required for air conditioners.

[ Read Full Story ]

WWF: We Have Until 2014 To Stop Global Warming

It’s no secret that the world is warming, but a new report published by the World Wildlife Fund suggests we may not have as much time to mull solutions as we think. If the world doesn’t commit to green technologies by 2014, the report says, runaway global warming and economic meltdown are all but unstoppable.

[ Read Full Story ]

There’s a footprint in your beer

On top of your carbon footprint, there’s also a ‘water footprint’ to consider…

First we were measuring our ecological footprint - the area of land and resources it takes to support our lifestyles.

More recently we heard about our carbon footprint - the amount of carbon we emit in our activities.
Now, welcome to our water footprint, the total amount of fresh water used to produce the goods and services we consume.

The Netherlands-based Water Footprint Network has calculated that it takes 75 litres of water to produce one glass of beer, with most of the water used in producing the barley for the beer.

[ Read Full Story ]

Geoengineering Moscow Mayor Promises No Snow This Winter

A Russian mayor wants to expand cloud seeding to preventing snow in Moscow

Controlling the weather with cloud seeding has previously proved popular with Chinese and Russian officials, but Moscow's mayor does not seem content with just keeping the rain off his roofs. Now Mayor Yury Luzhkov has hired the cash-strapped Russian Air Force to chemically spray clouds so that no snow will fall within his city limits.

[ Read Full Story ]

World's First All-Electric Locomotive Has Over 1,000 Batteries, Runs 24 Hours On a Single Charge

Norfolk Southern is the latest company to push a piece of heavy industrial machinery into green territory with their 100% electric NS 999 locomotive. The zero-emissions train makes use of 1,080 12-volt batteries that allows it to run for 24 hours on a single charge--all while carrying the same load as a conventional locomotive.

[ Read Full Story ]

Study Finds Purchasing Green Products Increases Your Likelihood to Lie, Cheat

Small acts of eco-kindness can make people more likely to cheat and steal.

In a recent paper by a pair of researchers at the University of Toronto, entitled "Do Green Products Make Us Better People?" the answer seems to be, eh, not completely. Although you may have done Mother Earth a favor, your unconscious might sway you to be less ethical with your fellow man.

[ Read Full Story ]

Geoengineering: Visions of Fake Plastic Trees and Algae Tanks on Every Roof

Could cutting carbon emissions give way to carbon-capturing artificial trees and rooftop slime?

Geoengineering is a popular idea, for Bill Gates and just about everyone else these days. Now the Institute of Mechanical Engineers proposes that the UK adopt technologies such as carbon-capturing artificial trees, biofuel algae tanks on rooftops, and coating surfaces in reflective materials to cut down on heating from the sun's rays.

[ Read Full Story ]

Struggles Making Algae Biofuel Lead To A Fishy Solution

One company squeezes fish for algae oil while others flounder.

It’s been a few years since the race to make biofuel from algae really heated up. Today more than 50 companies are trying to find a way to affordably squeeze oil from slime, and it seems like the golden age for these tiny autotrophs.

[ Read Full Story ]

Sea change

Scientists find more evidence of damage to the world’s oceans

Mounting evidence that human activity is changing the world’s oceans in profound and damaging ways is outlined in a new scientific discussion paper released today.

Man-made carbon emissions “are affecting marine biological processes from genes to ecosystems over scales from rock pools to ocean basins, impacting ecosystem services and threatening human food security,” the study by Professor Mike Kingsford of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and James Cook University and colleague Dr Andrew Brierley of St Andrews University, Scotland, warns.

[ Read Full Story ]