Thursday, April 16, 2015

These Tiny Capsules Suck Up CO2

Source: http://gizmodo.com/these-tiny-capsules-suck-up-co2-1698167277

They might look more like candy, but these micro-capsules are rather more special than that. Their shiny shell allows CO2 to pass straight through—where it can be trapped by a liquid held in their core.

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Tuesday, April 14, 2015

2 waterways that will host 2016 Olympic events are filled with dead fish and trash 16 months before the games

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/rio-lake-bay-fish-die-off-2016-olympics-2015-4

dead fish rio de janeiro 4

Two Rio de Janeiro waterways that are scheduled to host 2016 Olympic events are in rough shape with 16 months until the games begin.

The waterways, which were already plagued by sewage and pollution problems, have also been hit by fish die-offs in recent months, according to the Associated Press.

Dead fish called twaite shad have been floating to the surface of the Rodrigo de Freitas lagoon, which will hold canoeing and rowing events. According to the AP, some officials believe the fluctuations in oxygen levels that caused the die-off are a result of pollution, while others believe it has been caused by changes in temperature from rain and high sea levels.

dead fish rio de janeiro

A local photographer named Alex Moutinho told the AP, "Every year there are these die-offs, sometimes bigger, sometimes smaller. It's one more Brazilian shame."

dead fish rio de janeiro 6

rio lagoon fish die

This is the second die-off of 2015. In February, Guanabara Bay, which will hold the Olympic sailing events, was filled with dead fish, the cause of which is unknown, according to the AP.

dead fish rio de janeiro 2

Brazilian authorities pledged to have the w! aterways cleaned before the Olympics, but now fear they'll fall short of their goals, sparking concerns over the safety of Olympic athletes performing on the water.

According to CNN, Mayor Eduardo Paes told Brazilian sports network SporTV last month that much of the pollution will remain, though he's not concerned:

"The Olympics are also in a time that has very little rain, then this amount of debris that comes from five municipalities in the metropolitan region, with poor sanitation, is also controllable... I do not see as a problem for the Olympics"

What Guanabara Bay looks like with 16 months to go:

rio beach trash

rio bay olympics pollution

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NOW WATCH: Here's what Rio looks like 500 days before the 2016 Olympics








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Friday, April 10, 2015

More than 130 dolphins beach in Japan

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/afp-more-than-130-dolphins-beach-in-japan-2015-4

Children look at melon-headed whales beached on the shore of Hokota city, northeast of Tokyo on April 10, 2015

Hokota (Japan) (AFP) - More than 130 melon-headed whales, a member of the dolphin family usually found in the deep ocean, beached in Japan on Friday, sparking frantic efforts by locals and coastguards to save them.

Rescuers were battling to stop the creatures' skin from drying out as they lay on a beach about 100 kilometres (60 miles) northeast of Tokyo, while some were being carried in slings back towards the ocean.

Television footage showed several animals from the large pod had been badly cut, with many having deep gashes on their skin.

An AFP journalist at the scene said that despite efforts to get the dolphins into the water, some were being pushed back onto the beach by the tide soon after they had been released.

A number of the creatures had died, he said, and were being buried.

"We see one or two whales washing ashore a year, but this may be the first time to find over 100 of them on a beach," a coastguard official told AFP.

The pod was stretched out along a roughly 10-kilometre-long stretch of beach in Hokota, Ibaraki, where they had been found by locals early Friday morning.

"They are alive. I feel sorry for them," a man told public broadcaster NHK, as others were seen ferrying buckets of seawater to the stranded animals and pouring it over them.

Several animals could be seen writhing in a futile effort to move themselves on the sand, although as the morning progressed they were clearly becoming weaker.

Melon-headed whales, also known as electra dolphins, are relatively common in Japanese waters and can grow to be two- to three- meters (six- to nine-feet) long.

In 2011, about 50 melon-headed whales beached themselves in a similar area.

Despite international opprobrium, Japan hunts minke and pilot whales off its own coast, and has for many years also pursued the mammals in the Antarctic Ocean using a scientific exemption to the international moratorium on whaling.

It has never made any secret of the fact that meat from the animals is also consumed.

However, a UN court ruled last year that its hunt was a commercial activity masquerading as research, and ordered it be halted.

Tokyo, which insists whaling is a tradition and labels environmental campaigners as "cultural imperialists", has vowed to restart a redesigned southern ocean whaling programme, possibly later this year.

Japan also defies international opinion with the slaughter of hundreds of dolphins in a bay near the southern whaling town of Taiji.

The killing was brought to worldwide attention with the Oscar-winning documentary "The Cove".

 

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