Unleashing the inner green consumer

Academics have uncovered a key influence in the consumer's decision to go green, whether it's recycling, composting or buying environmentally friendly products. Research from Concordia University's John Molson School of business, proves that even just asking ourselves, or predicting, whether we will engage in sustainable shopping behavior can increase the likelihood of following through — especially when there's an audience.

Cry for global STEM funding

In today's global economy, a workforce trained in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) is recognized as a primary driver of growth. Around the world, STEM education initiatives vary in scope, size, type, target populations and funding sources. What’s missing is a unified global mechanism for STEM education. Creating a Global STEM Fund would help support and implement effective and innovative STEM programs in developing countries. The NGO Cosmos Education, the STEM Innovation Camp in South Africa, the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences and the Bunengi STEM Africa are but a few examples of organizations and programs that could benefit.

US wood pellet exports to Europe hit record high

Europe's boom in biomass demand has led to a doubling of wood pellet exports from North America in just two years to reach 4.7 million tons in 2013, according to the latest data. North America exported wood pellets valued at over 650 million dollars in 2013, a dramatic increase of more than 250 percent in just two years, according to new research released by the North American Wood Fibre Review. The US South shipped almost three million tons last year, which was almost two-thirds of total export volume from North America, and with no slowdown in sight, North American wood pellet exporting companies keep building new facilities to manufacture pellets for the European market.

Odds of storm waters flooding Manhattan up 20-fold, new study finds

Maximum water levels in New York harbor during major storms have risen by nearly two and a half feet since the mid-1800s, making the chances of water overtopping the Manhattan seawall now at least 20 times greater than they were 170 years ago, according to a new study.

Lava source may not be as deep as previously thought

History is littered with evidence of events where vast lava outpourings originated deep in the Earth. However, new research at Michigan State University shows that the source of some of these epic outpourings, however, may not be as deep as once thought. The results, published in the Journal Geology, show that some of these lavas originated near the surface rather than deep within the mantle.

US EPA finds the most energy efficient buildings in top 10 cities

Yesterday the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its sixth annual list of the 25 U.S. metropolitan areas with the most ENERGY STAR certified buildings in 2013. The list demonstrates economic and environmental benefits achieved by facility owners and managers in America’s leading cities when they apply a proven approach to energy efficiency to their buildings.

2014 ten most endangered rivers

American Rivers yesterday announced its annual list of America's Most Endangered Rivers®, naming California's San Joaquin River the Most Endangered River in the country. Outdated water management and excessive diversions, compounded by the current drought, have put the San Joaquin River at a breaking point.

Coordinated chemistry yields green solutions for more efficient gas storage

Metal Organic Frameworks (commonly called MOFs) are intricate crystal structures that can store or separate individual elements in a highly efficient manner. MOFs are materials made by linking inorganic and organic units together with strong bonds formed through coordination chemistry. MOFs are not only leading the way in providing clean technology solutions, but are actively being explored by the energy, transportation, and pharmaceutical industries to deliver new applications (for energy storage).

City lights threaten rain forests by deterring bats

Fruit-eating bats play an important role in forest regeneration, collecting and spreading seeds far and wide. However, human development may be stymying bat-mediated dispersal. In a new study published in the British Ecological Society's Journal of Applied Ecology, researchers found that fruit bats avoid feeding in light-polluted areas, which may significantly affect forest growth. Scientists from the German Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research, Berlin (IZW), undertook the study in Costa Rica, and focused on Sowell's short-tailed bats (Carollia sowelli), a species found throughout Central America and Mexico. The findings of their study indicate that artificial lights may deter these bats from feeding on fruit and spreading seeds by 25 to 50 percent.

REI Commits to Solar Energy to Reduce Climate Impact

REI, the $2 billion national outdoor retailer, is committed to renewable energy. The company has 26 locations with solar power systems in eight states (Arizona, California, Colorado, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Georgia).