Friday, October 28, 2011

Things I learned this week

I learned that:
• In 2005, scientists using Google Earth discovered a previously unknown (to them) rainforest in Mozambique, and were rewarded with the discovery of many new species.

• While it still has a way to go, research is underway to grow meat directly from stem cells. This could end animal slaughter and be easier on the environment.

• Engineers are re-thinking the conventional advice to avoid using elevators during an emergency. On 9/11, in the 16 minutes after the attack on WTC 1, about 16 percent of WTC 2’s occupants used elevators to escape the building.

• Wood may be the miracle product of the 21st century. Using its cellulose fiber to make rayon is much friendlier to the environment than growing cotton. Its lignin can be used to run a biomass cogeneration power plant. Its sugars can be turned into all kinds of other useful things in a biorefinery. And it doesn't compete with food production for scarce arable land.

• There are hundreds of lakes lying miles below Antarctica, kept from freezing by geothermal activity and constant pressure from ice sheets that lower their melting point. One of them is three times the size of Lake Ontario.

People who make shopping lists spend less time in stores, and make fewer impulse purchases.
How about that?

1 comment:

  1. I hope I live to see the day when no animals are slaughtered for human food!