Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Animals are always effected by the choices and products of humans. We build nuclear power plants and such, which produce harmful substances, that hurt the environment. The news has always been overwhelmed with the stories of oil spills hurting marine life and now there is news of nuclear damage being done to animals. According to ABC Science, there was a Ukraine nuclear disaster involving Chernobyl, which happened more then 20 years ago, that is still effecting wildlife. A quote from Biology Letters, in the Royal Society Journal, states that "[the] numbers of bumble-bees, butterflies, spiders, grasshoppers, and other invertebrates were lower in contaminated sites then other areas because of high levels of radiation left over". To think that something that happened such a  long time ago is still effecting our environment is shocking. It gets worse. If the animals did not die immediately from the disaster, many are now suffering with distorted limbs. This makes it a lot more challenging for the animals to find food or defend themselves. I think about all the other environmental issues we are facing and I am realizing that a lot of these could be long term effects. Harmful substance are emitted or accidental exposed into the environment every day and each one has a separate effect. Assuming this was an accidental Chernobyl disaster, it is still our responsibility to make up for it and fix it. Other disasters are being left uncared for. Wildlife is being harmed around the world and we need to be more careful and aware of our daily actions to help protect the wildlife. I was so upset to see this article on ABC Science!!! One thing after another is causing our world to fall apart. I may be opinionated, but it seems a lot of these "environmentally harmful" acts are caused by humans. When will we wake up and finally take action and fix it instead of just talking about?

To read more about the disaster, ABC Science has a lot of relating links including the following:

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Ever since the idea of global warming came up, scientists and researches around the world have been trying to find alternative energy sources to help reduce CO2 emissions. In the past, we have had a small amount of energy from solar panels and wind. Those are now being used more and more. Given the fact that the earth is 3/4 water, we are finally looking into using water power to generate electricity. According to the ABC Science article Wave Power, the technology for this wave electricity is still being developed and there are high hopes for it succeeding. It is mainly being tested and worked on in the UK and Europe, but is slowly becoming a global focus and idea. Andy Baldock, a UK wave energy analyst, says, "Waves are caused by wind blowing over long stretches of water, and [that wind] gets stronger towards the poles... That means that Australia and New Zealand have got good resources, as well as northern Europe, Canada and northern USA." The technology is starting to get more finalized and secure and now we also have an idea as to where the technology would be placed. Some are looking to use pilot wave power units (rest on the waters surface), which has chambers to help displace the air by moving up and down. The air is then forced inside a turbine to create the energy which then travels through a pipeline back to the land it is nearest. There are also other technologies being testes such as floats which move with the waves creating electricity and pure drinking water by bringing water to land at a high pressure. I am a huge supporter of alternative energy sources and trying to create a "green" planet. I feel if we have the technology, we should execute the idea of wave power. It is all around us and is such a huge part of earth. We need to use what we have and water is definitely easily available. GO WAVE POWER! I couldn't get this video to upload, but for an example of wave energy go to this link: