United Kingdom, Water
Robots in distress in the Venetian Lagoon
Robots in distress in the Venetian Lagoon Can mathematics be expressed poetically through computational technologies? Visual artists Vicky Isley and Paul Smith believe it can be and are collaborating with the Artificial Life Lab of the University of Graz, in Austria, on the Subcultron project (Submarine Cultures Perform Long-Term Exploration of Unconventional Environmental Niches).
Speeding up nature’s oil spill cleaners
Speeding up nature’s oil spill cleaners Imagine if oil spills could be completely cleaned up soon after a marine accident. And this could be made possible thanks to none other than warrior microorganisms who attacked and completely broke down the oil.
Airbags for ships save lives, environment and cargo
Airbags for ships save lives, environment and cargo When a ship runs aground, or two vessels crash into each other, the damaged one may lose its stability, or worse, sink. But imagine if after a ship accident, balloons popped up like car airbags to keep the disabled vessel upright and afloat .
Eating Insects - New Proteins for Farm Animals
Eating Insects - New Proteins for Farm Animals When on April 7 th World Health Day is celebrated, most experts will be blaming insects for the rising problem of vector-borne diseases. In some parts of the world, however, these little bugs are considered a healthy and tasty source of food .
When your water is contaminated
When your water is contaminated Statistically, drinking water in Europe is the safest in the world. But according to the World Health Organisation every year more than 300.000 Europeans are falling ill due to contaminated tab water. ...
Quick ID for water pathogens
Quick ID for water pathogens Drinking water flowing from your tap can contain harmful bacteria, viruses and single-cell animals. And most countries do not routinely test for all these bugs.
David Kay: cleaning up Europe’s bathing waters
David Kay: cleaning up Europe’s bathing waters Europe’s bathing water has come a long way in the last few decades. Especially since the EU Bathing Water Directive in 1976, countries have worked to eliminate sewage contamination in the waters we swim or paddle in.
Is desertification on the increase?
Is desertification on the increase? News of increased desertification has made headlines. Yet this process is not well understood.
Acoustic waves warn of tsunami
Acoustic waves warn of tsunami When a coastal area is about to be hit by the waves of a tsunami, time is everything. The earlier we know where and when it is going to hit the coast, the more chances there are to evacuate the area.
Cleaning up behind the fashion industry
Cleaning up behind the fashion industry The European fashion industry is a huge consumer of fresh water. Estimates point to 600 million cubic meter of fresh water being consumed yearly in Europe by the textile and clothing industry ; not a negligible amount.
Sheltering rising population from storm water
Sheltering rising population from storm water Storm water is a critical consideration in managing urban water , as it influences the risks of flooding. Unfortunately, a global rise in urban population means that water management in urban areas is now under strain.
Crops watering by phone
Crops watering by phone In Europe, irrigated agriculture is the chief water consumer for food production. Yet water resources are in limited supply.  One way out of this problem is to take more care with the water we use , and reduce the estimated 60% water waste.
On the global water trail
On the global water trail Water is one of humanity’s most pressing issues. Do we have enough of it for drinking, for farming or for industry? Too much, in the shape of flooding? Or too little, in the form of drought? The WATCH project, funded by the EU, was designed to give us better answers to questions of water management .
Wetlands: value to locals matters most
Wetlands: value to locals matters most We know when something is valuable to our everyday lives. We do not need a price tag. This is precisely what the HighARCS project attempts to do:  to measure the socio-economic value of ecosystem services , but without counting in euros, renminbi or dollars.
Tim O’Higgins: a new way forward for Europe’s regional seas
Tim O’Higgins: a new way forward for Europe’s regional seas Tim O’Higgins is a marine biologist in Scotland who has focused on those vital ecostystem services provided by estuarine and coastal waters.
Purifying sludge through oxygen-based digestion
Purifying sludge through oxygen-based digestion Dealing with sludge is one of the biggest issues of waste water treatment.
Bacteria to spot pollution
Bacteria to spot pollution Natural sensory system such as bacteria engineered to detect pollution and placed in a self-contained portable box could be the most effective way to track pollutants .
Under the weather, literally
Under the weather, literally We can blame all sorts of things on the weather. But a stomach bug?  It seems unlikely. Yet, scientists say greater quantities of rainfall and bigger storms will lead to more stomach upsets in parts of Europe.