Archive for Wildlife and Conservation

Teh environments needz your help!

Umm, apparently I was supposed to talk about this yesterday. I blame (irony alert!) a power outage.

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Guardian Unlimited | Comment is free | Ethical shopping is just another way of showing how rich you are

George Monbiot – author of much good work on GCC – has penned a little article worth reading.  The take home message is that we need to emphasize the first word in the holy trinity: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.

Guardian Unlimited | Comment is free | Ethical shopping is just another way of showing how rich you are

He flicked through it for a moment, and then summed up the problem in seven words: “This is for people who don’t work.”

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Metal chloride catalytic conversion of glucose to hydroxymethylfurfural

It probably sounds kinda boring and weak as a post title but it signals a very important scientific discovery. In an article published in Science magazine (fulltext, abstract) we learn that a team lead by chemist Conrad Zhang at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory has discovered that chromium dichloride can catalyze the transformation of one the major components of plant cellulose into another chemical that can easily be used as a plastic or even fuel stock precursor. Environmentally speaking, this means logging for plastics rather than drilling. It means that a sustainable plastics industry just became a lot closer to reality.

More coverage at Scientific American and the Press Esc blog

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Requiescat in pace, Steve

Reports of the life and death of Steve “Crocodile Hunter” Irwin are the #1 entry on Google News as I write this. Stabbed throught the heart by a sting ray while filming, he died almost instantly. He is only the third person in Australian history to die from a sting ray wound. Discovery Communications is renaming it’s garden at corporate headquartes in Maryland, USA after him and is also establishing a fund in his name to ensure the economic survival of his Australia Zoo wildlife park on the Gold Coast in southern Queensland. The fund will also provide for the education of his 2 children – Bindi Sue, 8, and Robert, 3. The Queensland Premier has offered a state funeral for him to his wife Terri, who has rushed back from a wildlife trek in Tasmania. Crikey mate, I’ll miss you.

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