While we all enjoy the smartphones and tablets manufactured in China, nothing has put the world on notice regarding air quality more than the horrendous pollution that plagues that country's major cities. As the U.S. comes to grips with its own pollution, a local research group has created a smartphone sensor system designed to make monitoring our air quality a little more convenient.
Overfishing of the planet's oceans is one of those environmental issues that flies under the radar of most, but remains a huge problem for nations that rely on sea life for their food supply. In an attempt to address a part of this problem, a British design student created a netting solution that could save millions of fish species in danger of disappearing forever.
It's a simple but powerful concept. If everyone devoted just some of the time and energy they devote to social media to making changes in our behavior, we could change the planet.
It sounds a little creepy, evoking images of unwitting fish following a robotic swimmer just like Picard was drawn into the Borg Collective. But the experiment has a warm and fuzzy heart — to understand why and how fish operate in schools to potentially guide them away from environmental disasters or hazards in the wild.
Pollution glue may sound like a joke, but it is real and it's being deployed in London in a bid to clean up one of Europe's dirtiest cities. The glue is really a dust suppressant solution sprayed on some of the city's busiest streets to keep airborne particulates to a minimum.
As cities across the globe stretch their limits to meet the needs of seven billion people, often wildlife habitats are displaced along the way. Fortunately, there are those who are thinking about innovative ways to create new environments to preserve wildlife. One such idea is the "Sea Tree," a giant self-sustaining eco-structure designed to rise out water, serving as a haven for flora and fauna only.
Rather than sending divers into the Pacific to check for contaminants leaking from Fukushima, it would be great if we had an undersea robot that could safely do such a job. The SHOAL Robotic Fish may be exactly the solution the Japanese government has been looking for.
In the 80s and 90s, a lot of effort was put into banning chlorofluorocarbons, or CFCs, a nasty little family of organic compounds that like to eat the ozone that's protecting us all from dying of sunburns. A couple decades later, we're just starting to see this proactive environmentalism begin to pay off.
With some good tunes and and your iPod cranked up, it's easy to become oblivious to your surroundings. Just yesterday, a young New Jersey boy was tragically killed when he couldn't hear an oncoming train's horn due to his blasting iPod. Now there's an app that still lets you crank up the music, but also lets essential sounds from your environment get through.
Last time we checked in with BP's ongoing efforts to stop the terrible leak 5,000 feet below the surface of the Gulf of Mexico, the company was taking a pair of industrial sheers to some tubes, and lowering a "cap" into place. Turns out it worked pretty well.