Wyoming billionaire pledges to protect 30% of the planet by 2030

photo: Wyoming billionaire pledges to protect 30% of the planet by 2030

Hansjörg Wyss leads a conservation effort of epic proportions.

If you follow global conservation and don’t already know the name Hansjörg Wyss, there’s a good chance you soon will.

Born in Bern, Switzerland, the 83-year-old entrepreneur and businessman first made his fortune in the Belgian steel industry before establishing the U.S. division of Synthes, a multinational medical device manufacturer best known for producing internal screws and plates used to help … [more…]

United States: Widespread water surpluses WI to TX & NY to GA

Map: forecast water surpluses and deficits in the USA

18 December 2018

THE BIG PICTURE

The 12-month forecast ending August 2019 indicates significant blocks of water surplus in three regions: the East Coast from southern New Hampshire through North Carolina; much of Texas into Oklahoma and Kansas; and Iowa and southern Wisconsin. Surpluses are expected to be extreme to exceptional in the heart of Texas surrounding the Edwards Plateau, eastern Pennsylvania, and coastal North Carolina around Wilmington.

With the … [more…]

Device that works like a lung makes clean fuel from water

Photo: Hydrogen fuels cells from water? Device that works like a lung makes clean fuel from water

A device inspired by human lungs can split water into oxygen and hydrogen – Agencja Fotograficzna Caro / Alamy By Chelsea Whyte

Human lungs move gas through a thin membrane, extracting oxygen and sending it into our blood stream. Now a device uses the same principle to power the reactions used for making hydrogen fuel.

Yi Cui at Stanford University and his colleagues set out to mimic human lungs to … [more…]

‘Like a Terror Movie’: How Climate Change Will Cause More Simultaneous Disasters

photo: disaster areas and climate change

Photo: A seaside neighborhood in Mexico Beach, Fla., devastated by Hurricane Michael this year. Scott Olson/Getty Images

Global warming is posing such wide-ranging risks to humanity, involving so many types of phenomena, that by the end of this century some parts of the world could face as many as six climate-related crises at the same time, researchers say.

This chilling prospect is described in a paper published Monday in Nature [more…]

Global coal industry using as much water as a billion people each year

map: coal-fired power plants and regions of water scarcity in the USA

We already know that coal-fired power plants are bad for the planet, but that’s usually because we are just thinking about the enormous amounts of carbon dioxide emissions they contribute to our atmosphere. A new Greenpeace report entitled The Great Water Grab sheds light on another terrifying aspect of the coal industry – its astronomical water consumption. The report suggests that the global coal industry uses the same amount of … [more…]