A round-up of this week’s environmental, green and ecofriendly news and updates.
I just love it when innovative, exciting new “inventions” are also green and ecofriendly – and that’s exactly what the winners of this year’s Index: Award program are. All the winners will improve the lives of people on Earth – and they’re good for the planet too. Here are my personal favourites:
- Delivering emergency medical supplies can be difficult, for example after a natural disaster or when access is difficult in a remote area. But Zipline will change that. Health workers text an order, items are packed and a drone is dispatched. Delivery is via parachute with highly accurate GPS. Each drone can make 500 deliveries in 24 hours in all weather conditions at reasonable cost.
- Millions are killed by malaria, HIV, and tuberculosis. Centrifuges detect infections – but they need electricity and are expensive. The Paperfuge is inspired by a 5,000-year-old toy that can separate plasma from a blood sample in 90 seconds. It weighs almost nothing, it’s made from paper, string and plastic, and it only costs 25 cents to make – it could save millions of lives around the world.
- The well-known Tesla Powerwall which allows homeowners to capture energy generated during the day and use it at night, also won an award (hooray!).
- Millions of people are blind, but preventative care can help – if it’s available. For many, it’s not. Peek Retina uses a cheap plastic clip to attach to a smart phone camera, to take a picture of the eye. These pics can diagnose cataracts, signs of glaucoma and more. It has the potential to reduce global blindness by a staggering 80 percent.
Activated charcoal is also said to be great for detox and for face masks.
Does it work? And is it safe?
The EcoExpert investigates. You might be surprised! Find out here.
Do you still have eclipse glasses left over from the last eclipse? Here’s what you can do with them:
- Donate them to Astronomers without Borders who will get them to under-privileged kids across the world. (Find a US collection centre near you).
- Use them to look at the sun’s sunspots which appear frequently across its surface
- Keep them for future astronomical events – partial or annular eclipses, the Transit of Mercury in 2019, the next eclipse visible in the US in 2024….
- Or (of course) recycle them. Remove the film first then the cardboard can go into the recycle bin.
Luckily, you can overcome it.
Here are 10 ways (all green and ecofriendly of course!) to get more energy and vitality into your life. Read them here.
Global Green News:
Women were Viking warriors too! The Vikings were famed for being great warriors and seafarers – but mostly we think of them as males. Researchers in Sweden used DNA testing to show that there were women warriors, and some commanded Viking armies too. (More details here).
It took 25 years, and now Canada has opened the world’s longest hiking trail. It stretches from coast-to-coast and was created mostly by volunteers (isn’t that amazing?). It’s really quite different too, because it uses lots of different transport methods. For example, the urban parts use trains. For the watery sections you’ll need a kayak or canoe. For the rest, you can cycle, hike or ride on horseback. But (best of all) no cars are allowed!
The UK will install solar panels on 800,000 low-income homes. The panels will be free to the tenants and will significantly lower their energy bills. About 1,000 jobs will also be created in the process, the majority of which will be given to military veterans.
US Green News:
It’s quite difficult to come up with anything other than the terrible aftermath of the hurricanes. It’s all been said by others, so I’ll leave it alone for now.
Except for this piece of news: Tesla has started producing its much-anticipated solar roof tiles at its factory in Buffalo, New York. The tiles will harness the sun’s energy without compromising the appearance of a roof.
What do you think? Let me know in the comments below.
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