Nature

Earth

How to make your new house a sustainable one

People might falsely believe that when they are building a house incorporating any sustainable solutions require additional costs and effort. It is actually the opposite. Some of the sustainable solutions require very little in any financing with comparison to the costs that need to be incurred anyways in a newly constructed building. Moreover, while an initial cost might be a bit higher as for purchasing, for example a sustainable heating system, there is a fast return on investment as utility bills are much lowers with sustainable heating than a standard one. It is possible to save around 30% on the use of energy and water in a sustainable house. That is a case with any other sustainable solution, when it pays off to invest in environment friendly solution in every case.Below there is list of sustainable solutions that can be applied in every house.Heat recovery system for the ventilation, heating and cooling.The use of geothermal heat pump for heating the house, allows for great savings on heating costs.It is common to use only floor heating as a heating option in energy efficient houses (no radiators). Use of low energy doors and windows (recommended triple glazed windows).

Earth

SpaceX launches Jason-3 satellite to monitor sea levels

Jason-3, a U.S.-European oceanography satellite mission with NASA participation that will continue a nearly quarter-century record of tracking global sea level rise, lifted off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California Sunday at 10:42 a.m. PST (1:42 p.m. EST) aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.Jason-3 is an international mission led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in partnership with NASA, the French space agency CNES, and the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites.”Jason-3 will take the pulse of our changing planet by gathering environmental intelligence from the world's oceans,” said Stephen Volz, assistant administrator for NOAA's Satellite and Information Service. 

Earth

How soil frost affects greenhouse gas emissions from Arctic soils

Soil frost is a nearly universal process in the Arctic. In a recent dissertation by doctoral student Marina Becher at Umeå University, it is shown that the frequency and extent of soil frost is important for the release of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide from arctic soil.Soil in the Arctic has for thousands of years gathered large quantities of decomposed organic matter due to the decomposition being slow at the low temperatures in the region. As temperatures in the Arctic are increasing, there is a growing concern that the organic matter stored in the ground will be decomposed and released as carbon dioxide. Such a process would contribute to the ongoing increase in this greenhouse gas in the atmosphere.

Earth

Warming climate may impact animals' ability to eat some toxic plants

University of Utah lab experiments found that when temperatures get warmer, woodrats suffer a reduced ability to live on their normal diet of toxic creosote – suggesting that global warming may hurt plant-eating animals.”This study adds to our understanding of how climate change may affect mammals, in that their ability to consume dietary toxins is impaired by warmer temperatures,” says biologist Denise Dearing, senior author of the research published online Jan. 13 in the British journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

Earth

Warming climate may impact animals' ability to eat some toxic plants

University of Utah lab experiments found that when temperatures get warmer, woodrats suffer a reduced ability to live on their normal diet of toxic creosote – suggesting that global warming may hurt plant-eating animals.”This study adds to our understanding of how climate change may affect mammals, in that their ability to consume dietary toxins is impaired by warmer temperatures,” says biologist Denise Dearing, senior author of the research published online Jan. 13 in the British journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

Earth

How much methane IS leaking at Porter Ranch?

A UC Davis scientist flying in a pollution-detecting airplane provided the first, and so far only, estimates of methane emissions spewing from the Aliso Canyon Natural Gas Storage Facility in Southern California since the leak began on Oct. 23, 2015.Those estimates were provided to the California Air Resources Board in November. Pilot and UC Davis project scientist Stephen Conley continues to measure emissions from the still uncontrolled leak, which has displaced thousands of residents in the affluent Porter Ranch neighborhood in northern Los Angeles. On Jan. 6, Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency in the community.To date, Conley estimates that the leak has emitted nearly 80,000 tons of methane, or about 1,000 tons per day.

Earth

How much methane IS leaking at Porter Ranch?

A UC Davis scientist flying in a pollution-detecting airplane provided the first, and so far only, estimates of methane emissions spewing from the Aliso Canyon Natural Gas Storage Facility in Southern California since the leak began on Oct. 23, 2015.Those estimates were provided to the California Air Resources Board in November. Pilot and UC Davis project scientist Stephen Conley continues to measure emissions from the still uncontrolled leak, which has displaced thousands of residents in the affluent Porter Ranch neighborhood in northern Los Angeles. On Jan. 6, Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency in the community.To date, Conley estimates that the leak has emitted nearly 80,000 tons of methane, or about 1,000 tons per day.

Earth

Denmark breaks its own world record in wind energy

Danish wind turbines set a new world record in 2015. Wind power is now counted for 42.1% of the total electricity consumption in Denmark, according to data published on Friday (15 January).The percentage of wind power in Denmark's overall electricity mix is the highest in the world. Last year, the share was 39.1%, which was a record, according to Energinet, which runs the power grids.