In a series of early-morning tweets, President Trump attacks an article in the New York Times suggesting that his personal lawyer Michael Cohen, whose offices were raided last week by the FBI, might cooperate with investigators.
It's one thing for a business plan to aim for the stars, but it's another thing entirely for a country to pin their dreams on reaching asteroids. Astrophysicist Neil DeGrasse Tyson has predicted that the first trillionaire will make their fortune by exploiting asteroid resources. "Our goal is to put into place an overall framework for the exploration and commercial use of resources from 'celestial bodies' such as asteroids, or from the moon," Etienne Schneider, Luxembourg's Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Economy said, according to CNBC.
Silicon Valley investors don’t usually pay a whole lot of attention to fish. But the world’s protein shortage is convincing venture capitalists that there’s money to be made in aquaculture, the ancient art of rearing aquatic animals and plants for food. Demand for new ways to feed the world’s 10 billion or so humans by…
Oil spills are disastrous for the environment, but a newly developed absorbent polymer could prove a novel cleaning solution. Developed by Australian and European researchers, with details published in the journal
Advanced Sustainable Systems, the material is actually a combination of used cooking oils and sulphur — the latter of which is a waste product of the petroleum industry. SEE ALSO: New Zealand bans new offshore oil exploration to tackle climate change Like a sponge, the polymer sucks up crude oil, which then can be squeezed and reused again. While there have been other sponge-like solutions to oil spills mooted in the past, this new polymer solution is created from waste products, which is of additional benefit to the environment. "This application can consume excess waste sulfur that is stockpiled around the globe and may help mitigate the perennial problem of oil spills in aquatic environments," Justin Chalker, the research's lead and synthetic chemistry lecturer at Flinders University, said in a statement. Sulphur and cooking oils are hydrophobic, which means they repel water, but they have an affinity for hydrocarbons like crude oil. As per a laboratory demonstration, it takes less than one minute for the polymer to absorb the crude oil, forming a floating cluster that can be then removed with a net. In 2017 alone, there was approximately 7,000 tonnes of crude oil spilt by tankers into the ocean, according to the International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation. Currently, there are several ways to clean up crude oil spills. If there is no risk of polluting coastal regions or marine industries, the oil can be left to break down naturally. For heavier spills, the oil is contained with booms and skimmers that are deployed to remove the substance off the water's surface. Biological agents or dispersants can be introduced to speed up the oil's degradation. When produced at scale, researchers anticipate the polymer to be an inexpensive solution to cleaning up oil spills, given the low cost of waste cooking oils and sulphur which forms the basis of the polymer. That low cost means it could be an effective solution for smaller, localised oil spills in countries where clean-up resources can be limited. The world's largest oil spill, BP's Deepwater Horizon in 2010, released 4.9 million barrels of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico, costing $61.6 billion to clean up. "This is a new class of oil sorbents that is low-cost, scalable, and enables the efficient removal and recovery of oil from water," Chalker added. WATCH: This experimental road is one very long charger for electric vehicles
In his annual State of the City address on Monday, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced that Elon Musk's SpaceX would be building its Big Falcon Rocket ships in none other than the Port of Los Angeles.
The UK government has announced plans to ban the sale of many single-use plastic items, including plastic straws, drink stirrers, and plastic-stemmed cotton buds. Get ready for it now with this list of great eco-friendly alternatives that are already on the market. SEE ALSO: Plastic straws, cotton buds, and drinks stirrers could be banned in the UK According to the UK government,"There are over 150 million tonnes of plastic in the world’s oceans and every year one million birds and over 100,000 sea mammals die from eating and getting tangled in plastic waste". We all know that this level of waste is unsustainable and with the ban looking like it could apply as early as next year, it's a good time to start thinking about ways in which you can minimise your plastic waste. Cotton buds The hazards of plastic stemmed cotton buds have long been recognised. According to The Ecologist, "The plastic from cotton buds has been discovered in the stomachs of Loggerhead Turtles, seabirds and many species of UK-caught fish. The bits of plastic that aren't eaten get broken down into micro-plastics — of which the dangerous effects are still unknown". Do your bit for the world's waterways with these Simply Gentle organic cotton buds; produced on biodegradable paper stems with 100 percent organic cotton tips grown without artificial pesticides. Image: Amazon Simply Gentle organic cotton buds - Pack of 200. £2.99 See Details Drinking straws According to the recent UK Government report, "8.5 billion plastic straws are thrown away each year in the UK". Upgrading to an eco-friendlier lifestyle is easy by switching from petroleum-derived plastic straws to reusable natural bamboo straws. Dishwasher-friendly, durable, and reusable, these straws can be used for hot or cold drinks and even include a free cleaning brush. The straws are also compostable, so, they will never end up polluting the environment. If you prefer a more disposable option, these biodegradable black straws by Bendy Eco (pack of 250 for £4.99) are also a great alternative. Image: Amazon Reusable Biodegradable Bamboo Drinking Straws - £12.99 See Details Toothbrushes Plastic toothbrushes are a big contributor to pollution and these Amazon Choice bamboo toothbrushes are another way to keep plastic out of the ocean and landfill. The Tevra toothbrushes are 100% biodegradable and boast zero-waste packaging, which means everything is recyclable. The charcoal bristles are a good choice for and those who have sensitive gums but still want white teeth and also means you can avoid using chemical-laden whitening gels that can damage the enamel of your teeth. Tevra are so confident that you will love their toothbrushes that they are even offering a money-back guarantee. Why not also upgrade to natural toothpaste and dental floss while you are at it? Image: Amazon Tevra Biodegradable Bamboo Toothbrush with Charcoal Bristles - £10.86 See Details Sandwich wrappers Banish disposable cling film or foil with these reusable sandwich wrappers. BPA free, machine washable and adaptable to different shapes and sizes, there ain't no lunch these bad boys can't handle. Image: Amazon Roll'eat Boc'N'Roll Reusable Sandwich Wrapper - £7.95 See Details Bin Liners Plastic bags can take up to 1000 years to decompose. Unlike everyday plastic bin bags, these compostable bin liners will break down to CO2 and bio mass in 6-12 weeks depending on the composting conditions. They can contain up to 30 litres and are suitable for medium-sized pedal bins, garden waste, grass clippings, local authority kerbside waste bins and pretty much anything. Image: Ethical super store Compostable Bin Liners - 30 litre - Pack of 25. £10.65 See Details Napkins Table napkins can have a surprisingly significant environmental impact. According to Groundswell, "if 50% of the U.S. population (about 150MM people), used 1 paper napkin per meal 3 times a day, 164,250,000,000 (yes billion) napkins would be used over just a 1-year period." Selecting napkins that are made from recycled paper not whitened with chlorine bleach and can be composted after use can go along way to helping to combat this. These eco-friendly and biodegradable 2-ply napkins from Greencane made from sugarcane and sustainably sourced wood pulp are a step in the right direction. Image: Mashable Greencane 2-ply Napkins (100) £2.79 See Details Handcrafted Wireless Bamboo Keyboard Although not generally of single use, the quantity and speed that we discard consumer electronics has increased rapidly in recent years, fuelled by the industry-wide push on consumers to buy new items quickly by artificially reducing the lifespan of products. Discarded plastic electronic devices can produce large quantities of waste, so why not consider this handcrafted wireless bamboo keyboard or a biodegradable laptop case. Beautiful and stylish and one step closer to reducing your plastic footprint. Image: Amazon Handcrafted Wireless Bamboo Keyboard. £39.99 See Details Biodegradable Laptop case This case features mould-proof lining material, soft wear and scratch resistance flannel, and high quality grey felt for shock absorption. It's made using sustainable, chemical-free materials that are plastic-free and metal-free. Did we mention it’s biodegradable? Image: Amazon Inateck 15.4 Inch MacBook Pro Retina Case, biodegradable, with Small Case for Accessory - £15.99 See Details Reusable water bottles and coffee cups Single-use plastic water bottles and disposable coffee cups are definitely not helping the environment. It's time to seriously consider alternatives and the Miu Glass water bottle or Contigo Steel travel mug are some great options. Image: Amazon Glass Water Bottle, with Eco-friendly Borosilicate Glass Bottle, BPA, PVC, Plastic and Lead Free - £12.99 See Details Reusable Coffee Cup This cup made out of BPA free translucent tritan copolyester, with vacuum-insulated technology, keeps beverages hot for 4 hours and cold for 12 hours. You can also save money with the discount that many coffee outlets offer when you bring your own cup. Image: Amazon Contigo Autoseal West Loop Stainless Steel Travel Mug - £19.85 See Details
Blue Origin, the rocket company founded by Jeff Bezos, announced that its new rocket engine would have the capacity to launch "100 full missions," as per CEO Bob Smith. The BE-4 should soon be ready to launch.
Igor, a Siberian tiger in a Hungarian zoo, received stem-cell joint treatment on Wednesday which doctors hoped would help heal its hip and allow it to live happily, on less medicine. Igor is a 13-year old tiger living in the zoo in the southern Hungarian town of Szeged. It has been suffering from hip joint pains for years.
Michael Barrett has an old-fashioned flip phone. As appalling images of panicked children and adults apparently victims of poison gas or cruel nerve agents go viral, the labs and the equipment store of the world's global chemical arms watchdog hum with activity. Tucked away in a small industrial zone in the Dutch suburb of Rijswijk, the two-storey building, with about 20 staff, has been key to the two decades of painstaking work by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to eliminate the world's toxic arms stockpiles.
Regarding the Feb. 9 Monitor Daily article “ ‘Calls From Home’: Kentucky radio station connects inmates and families”: This was such an important story. Recommended: Could you pass a US citizenship test?
“It was anything but dull in the Security Council on [April 9], when Russian UN Ambassador Vasily Nebenzya faced off with his US and UK counterparts, Nikki Haley and Karen Pierce, respectively...,” writes Konstantin Eggert.
We humans are not a stagnant species.Take the Bajau (pronounced Bah-joe). They’re a group of about 5,000 people that have lived on one of Indonesia’s ‘s 17,500 islands for centuries. The Bajau they live close to the water and spend a lot of their time diving for food in the sea, a hydrophilic lifestyle that…
Gardeners puzzled by the sudden emergence of an unusual orchid or despairing that their annuals have vanished should take heart. Scientist have discovered that some British flowers can lie dormant under the ground for up to 20 years, emerging into bloom only when the conditions are just right. Native flowers which have the capability of sheltering underground include the lady’s slipper orchid, the dark-red helleborine, spring vetch, autumn’s lady’s tresses, the broad bucker fern and the bee orchid. Researchers at the University of Sussex found at least 114 plant species are capable of living dormant under the soil for up to two decades, enabling them to survive through difficult times. Orchids and ferns seem particularly adept at slumbering for years at a time, the authors discovered. Prof Michael Hutchings, Emeritus Professor in Ecology at the University of Sussex, said: “It would seem to be paradoxical that plants would evolve this behaviour because being underground means they cannot photosynthesise, flower or reproduce. “And yet this study has shown that many plants in a large number of species frequently exhibit prolonged dormancy. Many of these species have found ways to overcome the loss of opportunities to photosynthesise during dormancy, especially by evolving mechanisms enabling them to obtain carbohydrates and nutrients from soil-based fungal associates. “This allows them to survive and even thrive during dormant periods.” The research found that dormancy is triggered when the weather is poor, or there is a new threat from herbivores or competing plants. Sometimes winters are so mild that the plant does not realise that spring has begun. Dormancy in seeds has been widely known about and studied for decades but the phenomenon of dormancy within plants that have left the seed stage behind and embarked upon adult life is far less well-known and understood. The study, led by University of Tokyo associate professor Richard Shefferson, is the first detailed analysis of the causes. Dormancy appeared to be more common near the equator, where threats from factors such as disease, competition, herbivores and fire are more severe. Co-author Dr Eric Menges of Archbold Biological Station in Florida, USA, said: “In fire-prone areas, there appears to be an advantage to plants remaining dormant and then sprouting after fire when favourable conditions exist for growth and flowering”. Prof Hutchings added: “Dormancy has evolved and persisted numerous times throughout the evolutionary history of the land plants. “This suggests not only that it has proved beneficial under many different ecological circumstances, but also that its evolution may be achievable through the occurrence of a small number of mutations at only a few genetic loci.” The research was published in the journal Biology Letters.
Jim Bridenstine, perhaps the most politically controversial NASA administrator in history, was confirmed today (April 19) on a party-line vote in the Senate, giving the US space agency a permanent leader for the first time in 15 months. The 50-49 vote puts the Oklahoma congressman in charge of the sprawling space agency and its $20-billion…
Have you ever wondered why land animals are so small today? Fossils have shown us that many dinosaurs were absolutely massive beasts, evolving over millions and millions of years to become huge, intimidating creature that could crush small animals under their mighty feet, and modern day mammals, by contrast, are tiny. Sure, elephants are big, but that seems to be a rare exception rather than the rule. As it turns out, the plight of many modern elephant species tells us everything we need to know about why mammals are so small: humans keep killing all the big ones.
A new study from a team of researchers from several American universities points to humans being the main reason why modern day animals are so tiny compared to the past. The research was published in Science. This is why we can't have nice things.
“We used to have animals on the Earth that weighed over 10 tons,” Felisa Smith, a paleoecologist at the University of New Mexico and co-author of the research, told Seeker. “Now the biggest thing is an elephant that on average is only about three and a half-ish, and if they go extinct, then we’re talking about things no bigger than 900 kilos (2,000 pounds). And that’s maximum size. If you look at mean size, it’s much, much different.”
The work focuses on what life roamed the earth in the post-dinosaur world, with creatures like the the wooly rhinoceros, mastodon, and the giant sloth which was as large as an elephant. These examples of "megafauna" began to disappear right around the time human ancestors pushed their way out of Africa. The scientists have drawn a pretty damning link between large-scale extinction of huge mammals and the arrival of human ancestors with insatiable appetites.
Even more unsettling than what our family tree has done to the animal kingdom may be what lies ahead. Smith and her fellow researchers suggest that, based on the trends humans have set in motion, such as climate change, larger modern animals face a similar fate as the ones we've already pushed to extinction.
"If we don’t cope with it, we actually are going to end up with an Earth where there is nothing bigger than a cow," Smith says. "And that’s a depressing thought for me personally.”
The Bajau people of Southeast Asia are among the most accomplished divers in the world. In the summer of 2015, Melissa Ilardo got to see how good they are firsthand. She remembers diving with Pai Bayubu, who had already gone fairly deep when he saw a giant clam, 30 to 50 feet below him. “He just dropped down,” Ilardo recalls. “He pointed at it, and then he was there. Underwater, the Bajau are as comfortable as most people are on land. They walk on the seafloor. They have complete control of their breath and body. They spear fish, no problem, first try.”
A SpaceX rocket launched from Cape Canaveral Wednesday evening carrying NASA’s latest planet-hunting telescope. Known as TESS, the satellite will look for planets capable of supporting life over a two-year mission.
NEW YORK (AP) — A postal worker who prosecutors say hoarded away more than 17,000 pieces of undelivered mail in New York City allegedly told investigators he was overwhelmed by the amount of mail he had to deliver.
With his straw hat, rubber waders, and a quartet of 12-foot fishing poles, Peter Schilling is the modern version of an ancient archetype: the surf fisherman, casting knee-deep in the ocean foam. At least twice a week, Mr. Schilling casts the breakers for pompano, whiting, or spotted trout, driving up to Amelia Island from his home in Jacksonville.
According to memos by former FBI Director James Comey, Donald Trump disputed allegations about cavorting with prostitutes in Moscow by insisting that he didn’t spend the night in Moscow during his 2013 trip. But the record clearly shows he did.