Archive | August, 2016

Overdrawn at the Ecology Bank

31 Aug

Earth Overshoot Day happened earlier than ever in 2016.

  Each year, Global Footprint Network calculates Earth Overshoot Day, which in 2016 fell on August 8. Earth Overshoot Day refers to the day each year at which we, as humans, have taxed the Earth beyond its capacity to provide for us. By looking at the planet’s biocapacity and humanity’s ecological footprint, Global Footprint Network […]

New Report Discusses Methods for Island Species Conservation

29 Aug

Endangered species like this Bali Starling are the subject of a new report on invasive species.

  Islands are often home to great biodiversity as species develop to fill very specific niches there and nowhere else. It was this fact that helped Darwin to develop his theory of evolution, after all. But that potential for diversity also makes those species vulnerable, especially to the predation of mammals like rats or foxes. […]

Investing Green in a Greener World: ESG and Corporate Investments

26 Aug

Climate change is a huge problem being addressed by ESG investments, among other things

Scientists and green activists agree that climate change is a huge problem. But what might surprise you is that many large businesses, particularly private equity investors and pension funds, care deeply about climate change as well. They show it in their choices of companies to invest in.  Whether it’s spending their funds on companies dedicated […]

Electric Vehicles Could Easily Replace Gas-Powered Cars

24 Aug

Electric vehicles like those pictured could easily replace gas vehicles, some argue.

Electric vehicles, or EVs, are the center of a lot of debate about carbon emissions and consumer needs. It’s pretty obvious that replacing traditional combustion engine cars with EVs would do a lot to help reduce emissions. In fact, one study found that replacing traditional cars with EVs would suffice for about 90 percent of […]

Largest Extinction Event on Earth Caused by Animals

22 Aug

Sea cucumbers are among the earliest multicellular life forms on earth.

The largest mass extinction in Earth’s history happened 540 million years ago, and is known as the end-Ediacaran extinction. New fossil evidence from Namibia has helped to shine some light on what caused that extinction: animals. Single-celled organisms dominated the planet until about 600 million years ago until the first multicellular organisms, known as Ediacarans, […]

European Salmon Stocks Were Reduced by Medieval Water Mills

19 Aug

Medieval water mills may have harmed European salmon populations

Human activity has been impacting the environment for as long as there have been humans. From our prehistoric ancestors hunting species to extinction, to modern carbon levels, pretty much everything we’ve done has had an impact. An example of this is shown by recent research on salmon stocks in the Netherlands. According to archival research […]

Gorillas Found Dismantling Poacher Traps

17 Aug

A family of gorillas. Juvenile gorillas have been dismantling poacher traps.

Poachers in Rwanda often make use of simple traps to catch antelopes and other animals. The traps generally consist of a noose tied to a bamboo branch, which is held down with a rock while the noose is hidden. Yes, just like in a cartoon. Although they aren’t meant to capture primates, they sometimes do, and […]

Using Candy and Drones to Save Black-footed Ferrets

15 Aug

A black-footed ferret,. This animal is endangered and getting more so thanks to a disease carried by its prey.

The black-footed ferret has been endangered for quite some time. They were actually listed as extinct in 1979, but a population was rediscovered in 1981, and as of 2011 there were about 1,000 of them in the wild. Since then, that number has dropped to about 300. That’s a 70 percent loss over five years, […]

Land Temperatures Will Keep Rising Even if We Cap Average Temperatures

12 Aug

A desert landscape

For years, climate scientists have been making the case that we can and must limit the increase of the average global temperature to no more than two degrees Celsius compared to temperatures before widespread industrialization. A recent study finds that may be harder to do than we expected. The study, published in the journal Scientific […]

MIT Researchers Develop System for More Efficient Biofuel Production

11 Aug

A biofuel production facility

Biofuels are a potential way to help the environment because they produce less carbon dioxide than fossil fuels, and they’re sustainable. Unfortunately, the process by which they are made can be inefficient. Biofuels are a byproduct of bacteria eating such things as corn or sugarcane, from which they get necessary nitrogen. The problem is that […]