United Kingdom, Environment
Europe set to take flight as a leader in drone services Starting in July 2020 EU member state national rules concerning the operation of drones will be replaced by EU wide regulation , opening the market and perhaps setting the global standard for drone safety and management.
Renaturing cities: good for health and the economy Would you enjoy a city full of parks, where streets were tree-lined, where cycling and walking were pleasant, a city with grass-insulated roofs on houses and public buildings to keep you warm in winter? According to a Eurobarometer study , there is an 84 per cent chance that your answer is yes.
Oceans: they pollute, they pay Plastic pollution from single use items such as straws, cutlery and cotton bud sticks are a serious issue facing oceans and marine life. Often these items are not disposed of properly and because they do not degrade end up in the oceans.
Climate change: trees to the rescue Fighting climate change is the challenge of the century. The last UN Environment Emissions Gap Report warned that, in order to ensure global warming stays below 2°C, efforts should be tripled , and if we want to stay below 1.
Small aircraft to find water leakage In about half of the EU countries, more than 20% of clean drinking water is lost in the distribution network before it reaches consumers’ taps, and in some countries the proportion is as high as 60%, stated a report by the European Commission.
The fight on plastics heats up in the EU A wind of change is blowing across Europe, trying to sweep away all the plastic bags that are littering our countries. January 2018 has been a busy month in this sense.
Improving the imperfect: photosynthesis for the future Despite its splendour and beauty, nature is full of imperfections. Indeed, the process of natural selection relies upon minor errors in genetic duplication to produce new variants, better suited to a given environment.
Rooting sustainability starts on school benches Do young people know what a smart city is? Do they care about saving energy and preserving the Earth’s resources? “Rooting sustainability starts on the benches of schools,” affirmed UNESCO director-general Irina Bokova at the recent UN Climate Change Conference ( COP22 ) in Marrakech, Morocco.
Homes storing CO2, just like trees Domestic efforts play an important role in curbing global warming. Besides producing and using renewables, homes can also act as banks that store CO2 .
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).
Cities: surviving floods and significant whims of the weather Part of the solution to counter the devastating effects of floods on human communities could be long-term climate forecasting, backed by assessments on the vulnerability of towns and cities As centres of innovation and growth, European cities are home to around 75% of the continent’s population and use about 80% of the energy it produces.
Bracing for summer thunderstorms With summertime and heat waves approaching, thunderstorms are becoming more frequent again. Recently several regions in Europe were hit by devastating thunderstorms along with strong winds, lightning strikes, hail and flash floods.
Resilient seeds - Nurturing the future of agriculture For the first time in its history, the Global Seed Vault on the Svalbard Islands, Norway, has authorised a withdrawal. It was requested in 2015 by Syria, a country where the war is endangering the local agricultural seed collections.
The sun is shining… Let’s prepare for severe weather! As well as being a time for celebration, winter in Europe is a time for serious weather. Blizzards, flash floods, hurricanes, heavy snow fall can cause chaos, major disruption, economic loss, and endanger lives.
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.
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 .