Green-News: Friday 8.22.08
- New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is hell-bent on renewable energy. In fact, he wants to power NYC with windmills. More from ENN:
Bloomberg said he is determined to keep the city's energy usage at or near its current level even as the population grows. But the city has to increase production of clean energy, he said.
"I believe that we've got to be willing to do what some other nations -- such as France -- have already done, and increase our capacity of safe and clean nuclear-generated power," he said.
Clean energy projects could also "draw power from the tides of the Hudson and East Rivers -- something we're already doing on a pilot basis," he said.
Bloomberg proposed increasing rooftop solar power production, "which we've estimated could meet nearly 20 percent of the city's need for electricity."
Companies may also "want to put windfarms atop our bridges and skyscrapers, or use the enormous potential of powerful off-shore winds miles out in the Atlantic Ocean, where turbines could generate roughly twice the energy that land-based windfarms can," he said.
- Mushrooms may be far more AMAZING than we think. Scientist Paul Stamets believes harnessing mushroom technology could save the planet. Via TreeHugger:
Stamets is also experimenting with packaging materials infused with mycelium and tree seedlings, that could help regenerate old growth forests (though I can’t help but wonder about the dangers of shipping non-native species around the globe), and he has also been exploring the possibility of using fungi in the production of cellulosic ethanol (Matthew has delved a little into fungi and ethanol before). But, in our experience of talking about Stamets’ work, it’s usually the slides about mycopesticides that most often blow people’s minds – once you’ve seen a mushroom infesting a termite, and then sprouting from its head, you start to understand what Stamets means when he says that these are powerful organisms that we would do well to understand better.
- It might sound stinky and altogether disgusting, but 200 million farmers fertilize with human waste—i.e. poop. Tasha Eichenseher of National Geographic News reports:
While the practice carries serious health risks for many, those dangers are eclipsed by the social and economic gains for poor urban farmers and consumers who need affordable food, the study authors say.
Nearly 200 million farmers in China, India, Vietnam, sub-Saharan Africa, and Latin America harvest grains and vegetables from fields that use untreated human waste.
Ten percent of the world's population relies on such foods, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
"There is a large potential for wastewater agriculture to both help and hurt great numbers of urban consumers," said Liqa Raschid-Sally, who led the study published by the Sri Lanka-based International Water Management Institute (IWMI) and released this week at the World Water Week conference in Stockholm, Sweden.