Hydrosphere – Biofera http://biofera.org/ Wed, 15 Sep 2021 11:47:57 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.8 https://biofera.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/biofera-icon-150x150.png Hydrosphere – Biofera http://biofera.org/ 32 32 Complete list and photos of all watches pre-selected for the 2021 Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG) https://biofera.org/complete-list-and-photos-of-all-watches-pre-selected-for-the-2021-grand-prix-dhorlogerie-de-geneve-gphg/ https://biofera.org/complete-list-and-photos-of-all-watches-pre-selected-for-the-2021-grand-prix-dhorlogerie-de-geneve-gphg/#respond Sat, 11 Sep 2021 20:53:42 +0000 https://biofera.org/complete-list-and-photos-of-all-watches-pre-selected-for-the-2021-grand-prix-dhorlogerie-de-geneve-gphg/

The 2021 Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG) has just published the list of preselected (“nominated”) watches ahead of the highly anticipated red carpet in Geneva on November 4, 2021.

The 14 categories for 2021 are: Ladies, Ladies’ Complications, Men, Men’s Complications, Iconic, Tourbillon, Chronograph, Mechanical Exception, Calendar and Astronomy, Diving, Jewelry, Crafts, Petite Aiguille (watches with retail prices between 4000 and 10,000 Swiss francs) and Challenge (watches whose sale price is less than 4,000 Swiss francs).

The main prize of the evening is the Aiguille d’Or, the best watch in the general classification among all the participants, which will be voted in the room by a smaller jury chosen from among the now nearly 500 members of the Academy.

Enough of the preamble, let’s take a look at the watches that are contending for the awards so far.

GPHG 2021: Ladies

Ladies’ watches nominated for the GPHG 2021

The Ladies category contains “ladies’ watches” comprising only the following indications: hours, minutes, seconds, single date (day of the month), power reserve, classic moon phases and are potentially adorned with precious stones of maximum value. nine carats.

The preselected watches are: Armin Strom Lady Beat Manufacture Edition White, Bovet 1822 Miss Audrey Sweet Art, Chanel Mademoiselle J12 Acte II, Parmigiani Fleurier Tonda Sélène Rose Gold White Mop 33 mm, Piaget Limelight Gala Precious Rainbow and the Van Cleef & Arpels Alhambra watch secret pendant.

Further reading:

GPHG 2021: Female complication

Ladies’ complication watches nominated for the 2021 GPHG

Ladies Complication are “ladies’ watches” remarkable for their mechanical creativity and complexity. These watches can feature all kinds of classic and / or innovative complications and indications (e.g. annual calendar, perpetual calendar, equation of time, complex moon phases, tourbillon, digital or retrograde time display, world time, dual time zone, etc.) and do not meet the definition of the Ladies category.

The preselected watches are: Bovet 1822 Récital 23, Chopard LUC Flying T Twin Ladies, Louis Vuitton Tambour Spin Time Air Vivienne, KF Watches KF-09-01, Piaget Altiplano Tourbillon and the Van Cleef & Arpels Lady Féerie.

Further reading:

GPHG 2021: men

Men’s watches nominated for the GPHG 2021

“Men’s watches” have the following indications: hours, minutes, seconds, single date (day of the month), power reserve, classic moon phases and are potentially adorned with precious stones with a maximum value of five carats.

The preselected watches are: Grand Seiko Hi-Beat 36000 80 Hours Caliber 9SA5, H. Moser & Cie Swiss Alp Watch Final Upgrade, Hermès H08, Louis Erard La Semaine Louis Erard x Alain Silberstein, MB&F LM101 Stainless Steel, and the Piaget Polo Skeleton .

Further reading:

GPHG 2021: Male complication

Men’s complication watches nominated for the 2021 GPHG

This category includes “Complication Watches for Men” remarkable for their mechanical creativity and complexity. These watches may have all kinds of classic and / or innovative complications and indications (for example, world time, dual time zone and others) and do not meet the definition of the Men and Mechanical exception categories.

The preselected watches are: Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Selfwinding Flying Tourbillon Chronograph, Breitling Premier B15 Duograph 42, Bulgari Octo Roma Worldtimer, Chanel Monsieur Superleggera Edition, Chopard LUC Quattro Spirit 25 and the MB&F LMX Titanium.

Further reading:

GPHG 2021: emblematic

Iconic watches nominated for the GPHG 2021

The Iconic category brings together watches from an emblematic collection that has left a lasting mark on the history of watchmaking and the watch market for more than 20 years.

The preselected watches are: Audemars Piguet Royal Oak “Jumbo” Extra-Thin, Grand Seiko Re-creation of the first Grand Seiko, IWC Schaffhausen Big Pilot’s Watch 43, Tudor Black Bay Fifty-Eight 925, Vacheron Constantin American 1921, and Zenith Chronomaster Revival A386 Manufacture.

Further reading:

GPHG 2021: Tourbillon

Tourbillon watches nominated for the GPHG 2021

In the Tourbillon category, we find mechanical watches for men with at least one tourbillon. Additional indications and / or complications are admissible.

The preselected watches are: ArtyA Purity Tourbillon, Audemars Piguet Code 11.59 Self-winding flying tourbillon chronograph, De Bethune DB Kind of Two Tourbillon, Girard-Perregaux Tourbillon with three flying bridges – Aston Martin Edition, IWC Schaffhausen Big Pilot’s Watch Constant-Force Tourbillon Edition. IWC Racing ”, Louis Moinet Space Revolution.

Further reading:

GPHG 2021: Calendar and astronomy

Calendar and Astronomy watches nominated for the GPHG 2021

The Calendar and Astronomy category focuses on mechanical watches for men with at least one calendar and / or one astronomical complication (e.g. date, annual calendar, perpetual calendar, equation of time, complex moon phase display, etc. .). Additional indications and / or complications are admissible.

The preselected watches are: Arnold & Son Luna Magna, Breitling Premier B25 Datora 42, Bulgari Octo Finissimo Perpetual Calendar, Christiaan Van Der Klaauw CVDK Planetarium Eise Eisinga, IWC Schaffhausen Big Pilot’s Watch Perpetual Calendar Top Gun Edition “Mojave Desert” and the Konstantin Minotaure Chaykin.

Further reading:

GPHG 2021: Mechanical exception

Exceptional mechanical watches nominated for the GPHG 2021

The Mechanical Exception category includes watches equipped with a particular mechanism such as an innovative or sophisticated display, an automaton, a chime or any other acoustic function, a special escapement, a belt movement, or any other original watchmaking concept and / or exceptional.

The preselected watches are: Bernhard Lederer Central Impulse Chronometer, Christophe Claret Napoleon, Jacob & Co Opera Godfather Minute Repeater, Miki Eleta Svemir, Piaget Altiplano Ultimate Automatic and Ulysse Nardin UFO.

Further reading:

GPHG 2021: Chronograph

Chronograph watches nominated for the GPHG 2021

Timepieces classified in the Chronograph category are mechanical watches with at least one chronograph indication. Additional indications and / or complications are admissible.

The preselected watches are: Angelus U30 Black Tourbillon, Flyback and Split-Second Chronograph, Breitling Premier B09 Chronograph 40, IWC Schaffhausen Pilot’s Watch Chronograph Edition “Tribute to 3705”, Louis Erard Le Chrono Monopoussoir Louis Erard x Alain Silberstein, Tudor Black Bay Chrono , and the Zenith Chronomaster Sport

Further reading:

GPHG 2021: Diver

Diving watches nominated for the GPHG 2021

The Diver category contains watches related to the field of diving, whose functions, materials and design are adapted to this activity.

The preselected watches are: Doxa SUB 300 carbon COSC Aquamarine, Louis Vuitton Tambour Street Diver Skyline Blue, Archimèdes de Milus Orange Coral, Oris Aquis Date Caliber 400 41.5 mm, Reservoir Hydrosphere Bronze “The Greg Lecoeur Edition” and the Ulysse Nardin Diver X Skeleton.

Further reading:

GPHG 2021: Jewelry

Jewelry watches nominated for the GPHG 2021

The Jewelry category brings together watches demonstrating an exceptional mastery of the art of jewelry and gem-setting. The watches are also distinguished by the choice of stones.

The preselected watches are: Bulgari Serpenti Barocko, Chanel Mademoiselle Privé Bouton Décor Byzantine, Chopard Flower Power, Hermès Kelly Joaillerie, Piaget Exquisite Moments and the Van Cleef & Arpels Ludo secret watch.

Further reading:

GPHG 2021: Crafts

Artistic Crafts watches nominated for the GPHG 2021

Watches in the Crafts category demonstrate exceptional mastery of one or more artistic techniques such as enamelling, lacquering, engraving, guilloche (filming), skeletonization, and more.

The preselected watches are: Andersen Genève Jumping Hours 40th Anniversary in platinum, Bulgari Diva’s Dream Peacock Collection, Hermès Arceau Toucan de Paradis, Louis Vuitton Tambour Carpe Diem, MB&F LM SE Eddy Jaquet Around the World in Eighty Days and the Voutilainen Duluth bridge.

Further reading:

GPHG 2021: Small Needle

Petite Aiguille watches nominated for the 2021 GPHG

Watches registered in the Petite Aiguille category have a retail price of between CHF 3,500 and CHF 10,000. Connected watches are eligible in this category.

The preselected watches are: Breitling Top Time Deus Limited Edition, Garrick S4, Louis Erard Le Régulator Louis Erard x Vianney Halter, Seiko Re-creation of King Seiko KSK, Trilobe Nuit Fantastique in Grained Black and Tudor Black Bay Ceramic.

Further reading:

GPHG 2021: Challenge

Challenge watches nominated for the GPHG 2021

Watches registered in the Challenge category have a public price less than or equal to CHF 3,500. Connected watches are eligible in this category.

The preselected watches are: anOrdain Model 1 in smoky gray by Payne, CIGA Design Blue Planet, Doxa SUB 200 C-GRAPH Caribbean, Furlan Marri MR. Gray reference 1041-A, Massena Lab Uni-Racer and Oris Divers Sixty-Five Cotton Candy.

Further reading:

Let us know your favorites in the comments below and look for our upcoming prediction roundtables!

For more information, please visit www.gphg.org/horlogerie/en/gphg-2021/nomined-watches.

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U of O researchers are working to improve membrane distillation techniques to make drinking water more accessible https://biofera.org/u-of-o-researchers-are-working-to-improve-membrane-distillation-techniques-to-make-drinking-water-more-accessible/ https://biofera.org/u-of-o-researchers-are-working-to-improve-membrane-distillation-techniques-to-make-drinking-water-more-accessible/#respond Tue, 07 Sep 2021 21:29:24 +0000 https://biofera.org/u-of-o-researchers-are-working-to-improve-membrane-distillation-techniques-to-make-drinking-water-more-accessible/ Reading time: 2 minutes

We looked at the pore wetting phenomenon and how O University PhD candidate Hooman Chamani plans to alleviate it.

University of Ottawa doctoral candidate Hooman Chamani, alongside Professors Christopher Lan and Takeshi Matsuura from the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, recently published their work Pore ​​wetting in membrane distillation: a comprehensive review. Their research aims to commercialize membrane distillation (DM) and to work for access to drinking water for all. MD is a thermal process where only vapor molecules are transferred through a hydrophobic (water repellent) microporous membrane

In the article, Chamani illustrates that current membrane desalination technology, reverse osmosis, is unable to desalinate highly saline (or salty, in layman’s terms) brines due to the very high osmotic pressure required. The only means of treating hypersaline water are desalination technologies by thermal evaporation, the use of which is extremely expensive.

Membrane distillation, on the other hand, is an alternative to reverse osmosis, which Chamani says has drawn attention for the desalination of very salty brines.

In an interview, Chamani explained that “although the membrane desalination (DM) process offers a number of potential advantages, including low operating hydraulic pressure, nearly 99.9% rejection of non-volatile solutes, low sensitivity to salt concentration, low footprint as well as independent performance of high osmotic pressure, several obstacles prevent full commercialization of MD. One of the biggest obstacles is the wetting of the pores.

Chamani adds that “the wetting of the pores occurs when the liquid penetrates the membranes instead of the vapor, which is undesirable”.

According to the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, half of the world’s population will live in areas of water stress by 2030. – there is great potential to obtain fresh water from salt water in eliminating its salts and minerals via the desalination process. Desalination can help achieve the sixth United Nations goal on the availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all.

Chamani’s research aimed to tackle this previously poorly understood pore wetting phenomenon to better understand it and, therefore, alleviate pore wetting of MD and help MD become commercialized.

Chamani was born and raised in Khorasan, a semi-arid region in eastern Iran with severe water problems. “I was introduced to the concept of water and wastewater treatment from a young age, and seeing the irrigation problems of farmers in my town pushed me to work in this field”

He obtained his MASc and BASc in Chemical Engineering with distinction from Sharif University of Technology and Ferdowsi University in Mashhad, respectively.

“I was involved in the field of environmental engineering during my BASc project on ‘the preparation and filtration of wastewater membranes’ and later, the MASc thesis on’ the synthesis of nanoadsorbents and the adsorption of dyes from the wastewater, ”said Chamani.

To continue his research as a doctoral student, he joined the joint research group of Professors Christopher Lan and Takeshi Matsuura at the University of Ottawa, where they mainly focused on water desalination. of sea and brine.

In order to work to end the water scarcity, says Chamani. “I hope to one day live in a world where no one has to suffer from water scarcity.

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Erratic monsoon poses serious challenges for farmers – the Sangai Express https://biofera.org/erratic-monsoon-poses-serious-challenges-for-farmers-the-sangai-express/ https://biofera.org/erratic-monsoon-poses-serious-challenges-for-farmers-the-sangai-express/#respond Sun, 05 Sep 2021 19:17:29 +0000 https://biofera.org/erratic-monsoon-poses-serious-challenges-for-farmers-the-sangai-express/

Nando Waikhom
IMPHAL, August 5: At a time when the central government is focusing on increasing the incomes of the country’s farmers, farmers in Manipur face great challenges to maintain a conventional form of farming practice in a monsoon context erratic.
According to data received from the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), Lamphelpat, the state recorded this year a rainfall difference of -48.44% in January, -80.67% in February, -26.84% in March, -55.41% in April. , -31.62% in May, -12.99% in June, -8.41% in July and 23.10% in August.
With the insufficient and changing pattern of monsoon rainfall, farmers are forced to spend more money to meet the needs of agriculture, especially in the management of irrigation water.
Moirangthem Manimohon, a tenant farmer from Pourabi Awang Leikai in Imphal East has argued that farming can no longer be maintained as a profitable occupation in the state.
Claiming that he had barely succeeded in spreading rice seeds despite very scarce water in his rice fields, Manimohon claimed that he had so far spent around Rs 20,000 per sangam in his rice field, which he said , is relatively higher than the amount committed last year.
“Apart from the soaring fuel price which triggers considerably higher plowing costs this farming season, farmers were spending huge sums on irrigation water management, weed cleaning and supply. fertilizer, ”he said.
While expressing their dissatisfaction with the current state of his crops, the sharecroppers expressed concern that he could go into debt this season if he cedes his share of the yield from his rice paddy owner as usual.
K London, another farmer from the same village, claimed that the traditional / conventional form of agriculture that relies solely on the monsoon has been quite vulnerable to the erratic monsoon that has taken place in recent years.
Claiming that farmers face the recurring problems of water scarcity, followed by fertilizer shortage and flooding of paddy fields almost every year, he lamented that the value of the yield received at the end of a harvest season was almost identical to the total amount committed. in the whole process of agriculture.
He said that many farmers like him in the Purabi region are now worried about whether their crops will yield a lot of harvest this season, as the lack of water in the paddy fields has caused the delay and infestation of many cultures in and around the village.
On the other hand, Nongthombam Gulapi, a 72-year-old farmer from the same village claimed that the deterioration of the source of the irrigation facilities in and around Purabi has greatly disrupted agriculture.
He said some of the waterways (ishing khong / loukhong) that were used to provide irrigation facilities in the Purabi area have become very shallow and narrow due to the encroachment.
The old farmer regretted that the water shortage in the village’s rice fields could have been alleviated to a large extent if the irrigation waterway (loukhong) from Huidrom to Purabi was functional.
Making views and estimates similar to Gulapi’s, London claimed that as part of environmental conservation, a local committee set up by a group of dynamic youth and villagers in Pourabi has now limited deforestation in the hills of Chengba Makou.
Meanwhile, NIT, the head of Langol’s civil engineering department, Dr Ngangbam Romeji, pointed out that Manipur, which is part of the Himalayan region of India (IHR), has seen stochastic and indeterminate changes in hydrosphere and monsoon patterns.
He said the rich hydroclimatic region of the Himalayan region of Manipur and North East India (RHI) was shrinking and becoming fragile in its environment with the unprecedented climatic variations over the past two to three decades, causing floods, droughts, devastating landslides, etc.
Informing that this RSI part of Manipur occupies 4.18% of the Indian Himalayan region, the professor argued that the region has a large variation in temperature regime that varies from 15 ° C to 32 ° C in summer and from 0 to 26 ° C in winter.
He said a research study deploying a diagnostic atmospheric model to estimate the amount of recycled precipitation suggests that about 7% of the total precipitation that was contributed by local moisture recycling decreased by about 30 to 50 mm.
He indicated that a grid of observed precipitation and sea surface temperature data for the last 114 years (1901-2014) also indicated that the declining trend in summer monsoon precipitation is rather associated with the high inter-decadal variability from the subtropical Pacific Ocean to Manipur – NE RSI.
The professor further observed that the high inter-decadal variability in the region predicted a possible decadal prediction of monsoon development and precipitation. He added that all of these factors disrupted orographic distributions and the formation or dissipation of rain-bearing clouds. The professor noted that there is a marked decline in forest and plant cover from 16,505.98 square kilometers in 2011 to 15,890.24 square kilometers in 2019. ”he said.
(This article was written under the Climate Change Reporting Media Fellowship of the Environment and Climate Change Directorate, Manipur) Source link

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The cannibalism that saved the earth, By Okezue Bell – SoundiataPost https://biofera.org/the-cannibalism-that-saved-the-earth-by-okezue-bell-soundiatapost/ https://biofera.org/the-cannibalism-that-saved-the-earth-by-okezue-bell-soundiatapost/#respond Tue, 31 Aug 2021 09:35:14 +0000 https://biofera.org/the-cannibalism-that-saved-the-earth-by-okezue-bell-soundiatapost/

Wait, so the solar power has self-powered? Not exactly. Let’s start with the beginning.

The energy industry is currently booming, having grown more than 16 times since 1950. Unfortunately, however, almost 81% of the energy we produce and use depends on fossil fuels, a type of non-renewable natural material that is typically burned to produce usable energy, for example, burning coal. The average American home uses 10,649 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity per year. That’s almost 11 million watts of energy per hour used by every American household, or up to 96.3 billion watts each year for each household, and with each kWh of energy equal to 0.92 lbs of CO₂ , there are more than 1.9 billion short tons. of CO₂ released per year in the United States. Due to the low throughput of traditional electricity generation, utility service is expensive, costing an average of 13.19 ¢ per kWh; this explains why more than 16% of the world’s population does not have access to electricity.

As technology and industrial activity continue to take precedence over developing and developed economies, demand has increased from 11.4 billion tonnes of oil equivalent to 17.7 billion tonnes and an increase in energy consumption of 50% by 2030. Add to that the additional 2 billion people who will need electricity by 2040, and it is clear that the continuous method of electricity generation will be harmful to the environment, not only by polluting the atmosphere, but also the hydrosphere and geosphere, as burning coal can also cause acid rain and improper disposal can acidify the oceans. Many times, power plants can cause a myriad of public health risks, including asthma, cancer, heart and lung disease, and even neurological problems. Residual charcoal ash can also cause respiratory problems.

Solar energy and others

If we cannot rely on fossil fuels on a large scale, we will have to design better energy production schemes that are economically and environmentally sound. This is where a solution like solar energy, or the recovery of energy from photons emitted by the sun through different types of material elements, such as silicon. Because solar energy relies on a physical phenomenon known as photovoltaic effect, in which solar energy moves electrons in a material, thereby creating usable electricity, there is a limit to the efficiency of materials. For example, crystalline silicon solar panels have a maximum power of 15%, which means that 85% of the solar energy absorbed is wasted.

However, with a 20% CAGR and a recent projection of market capitalization of $ 200 billion by 2027, the solar energy industry is changing rapidly, with new technologies and materials such as solar panels in thin film, perovskite and organics with increased versatility and efficiency, such as being flexible enough to be incorporated into cars and windows. Solar energy is even used in other inefficient and unsustainable industries, such as transportation. Fortune 500 companies such as Tesla have also started to enter the solar market. Here is a summary of current innovations in solar technology:

Beyond solar energy, there are many other sources of renewable elements, such as wind and water, which are also used to generate energy. There are also unique methods of generating electricity used in low income areas, such as lamps powered by a glass of salt water and using the kinetic energy of rocks on a swing to turn on the light bulbs.

| For a detailed article on how solar technology works and the current state of photovoltaics
and energy consumption, see my other solar article on Soundiata!

Unfortunately, analyzes of these technologies indicate that they self-cannibalize. You may be wondering ‘how solar power or a windmill to eat himself? ” That’s good cannibalization effect in fact describes how, when the penetration of renewables increases, wholesale electricity prices decrease due to the merit order effect. Therefore, cannibalization comes from penetration that negatively affects the energy market, reducing its value factors and revenues. It is therefore necessary that these technologies complement each other; for example, increased solar penetration increases the value of wind power. Then how you, a consumer, play a role in the elaborate network of climate technologies? Well time will tell, but at the end of the day there is a lot you can do with solar panels. As technology continues to grow and develop, we will see prices drop and demand rise! Until then, invest in solar through stocks, crypto, and supporting businesses that use and sell solar by placing your financial support in their products.

Together, we can create the future we want to see.

Together – with solutions in hand and our support in the other – we can create this future.

Before you leave…

My name is Okezue, a developer and researcher obsessed with learning and building things, especially when it comes to any form of STEM. Currently I’m working at Microsoft to make diagnostics fairer, but I really like sustainability, neurotech, etc. Check out my social networks below or contact me: i@okezuebell.com.

I write something new every week on Soundiata, so I hope to see you again soon! Be sure to comment and leave some applause on that as well, especially if you liked it! I enjoyed writing it!

Twitter | LinkedIn | Website | Bulletin


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NASA monitors water to help growers grow https://biofera.org/nasa-monitors-water-to-help-growers-grow/ https://biofera.org/nasa-monitors-water-to-help-growers-grow/#respond Mon, 30 Aug 2021 12:46:04 +0000 https://biofera.org/nasa-monitors-water-to-help-growers-grow/

Every day – up to thirty times a day, in fact – one of Mark Mason’s employees at Nature’s Reward Farms in Monterey County, Calif., Brings him the results of a soil test for discussion.

Mason oversees the fertilizer and irrigation of the 5,000-acre farm along California’s central coast, nicknamed “America’s Salad Bowl,” which is one of the most productive and diverse agricultural regions in the country. world. These soil test results are key to one of its most recent tools: CropManage, which is operated by the University of California Cooperative Extension and uses data from NASA and other sources. to create personalized irrigation and fertilizer recommendations. In addition to satellite measurements of crop development, it assesses local weather conditions, soil characteristics and the efficiency of the irrigation system.

But central California doesn’t get a lot of rain. Most of the central valley’s water comes from streams and reservoirs that capture snowmelt from the mountains and groundwater stored in porous deposits deep below the surface. These water sources face increasing pressures from climate change, human use and natural variability, making water management a complex and evolving problem. Monitoring the amount of water available to grow our grocery store has never been more vital, and Earth observation satellites and NASA partnership programs are helping farmers, water managers and policy makers. to monitor and allocate increasingly scarce water resources throughout their state.

NASA researchers are watching central California’s water sources up close, how they change over time and why – and produce information that can be used to figure out what to do about it. Satellites, aerial and field missions track snowfall, precipitation, soil moisture levels, groundwater depletion, crop health and evapotranspiration. By providing better information on how much water is entering and leaving the system, these indicators help farmers determine how much water they will need and how much will be accessible.

Matt Rodell is the deputy assistant director of earth sciences for hydrosphere, biosphere and geophysics at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. He studies groundwater around the world, using data from NASA’s Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment Follow-On (GRACE-FO) mission. Groundwater is especially important in places like the Central Valley and the Central Coast which do not receive much rainfall and face frequent droughts.

“Groundwater is extremely important because it is usually always available,” Rodell said. “It’s stored over many years, or decades, or centuries, or millennia – it’s like your savings account. You always want that water to be set aside so that it’s there for the tough times. ” California is one of the global hot spots that GRACE researchers are studying. It is one of the many regions where groundwater is depleted faster than it is recharged.

Read the full article at www.spaceref.com.

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A student’s mission to protect the world’s most precious resource https://biofera.org/a-students-mission-to-protect-the-worlds-most-precious-resource/ https://biofera.org/a-students-mission-to-protect-the-worlds-most-precious-resource/#respond Wed, 25 Aug 2021 20:16:18 +0000 https://biofera.org/a-students-mission-to-protect-the-worlds-most-precious-resource/

Desalination of seawater by membrane processes. Credit: Johnson Effoe Efome

Hooman Chamani, a PhD candidate in Ottawa, is motivated by one thing: to tackle the global water crisis in an environmentally responsible way. It may sound simple, but until recently it wasn’t.

Today, thanks to his work alongside Dr Christopher Lan and Dr Takeshi Matsuura, professors in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of Ottawa, and their research team, Joanne Woloszyn and Dr Dipak Rana , a … yet commercially viable, a solution that improves current desalination techniques has been identified.

Their work, “Pore wetting in membrane distillation: A complete review”, was recently published in the prestigious scientific journal of Advances in Materials Science and identifies “membrane distillation” marketed as a green solution for clean drinking water.

“With membrane distillation commercially available on a large scale, we can move towards a solution to the water crisis,” says lead author Hooman Chamani.

The blue planet

While the Earth is mostly covered with water, the availability of natural freshwater is relatively low, accounting for only 2.5% of its hydrosphere, with the remaining 97.5% being salt water.

As the population increases, the demand for water also increases, which puts pressure on its limited quantity.

“More than two billion people in the world do not have access to drinking water,” explains Hooman Chamani. “Even in Canada, endowed with abundant freshwater resources, you can find areas that suffer from water scarcity. Human activities such as urbanization and industrialization are fueling the problem by polluting available freshwater supplies. contributes greatly to the global water scarcity.

Desalination is the process of removing salts and minerals from salt water to obtain fresh water.

“The state-of-the-art technique for seawater desalination is reverse osmosis,” explains lead author Christopher Lan. “However, a major drawback of this technique is its inability to desalinate very concentrated brines (salt water). An alternative method of desalination, better equipped to handle very saline solutions, is membrane distillation.”

Wetting of the membrane pores

So, if membrane distillation is a better way to get clean water, why hasn’t it been widely marketed yet?

According to the researchers, the most predominant disadvantage of membrane distillation is called “membrane pore wetting”.

“If this problem is resolved, it is highly likely that membrane distillation will replace reverse osmosis as the preferred desalination technique,” ​​says Takeshi Matsuura. “We have tried to make membrane distillation more commercially viable, in particular by tackling the problem of pore wetting from a fundamental aspect. In the review article, we presented a comprehensive review of recent developments, including our own, to prevent membrane pores from getting wet. “

“In our review, we discuss all aspects of pore wetting, which is the most critical challenge of membrane distillation, in order to better understand this unwanted phenomenon with the most advanced knowledge in this field.”

Safe for us and the environment

“The brine released by reverse osmosis is very concentrated and its disposal has become a critical environmental challenge,” explains Hooman Chamani. “Therefore, treating highly saline brines using commercially available membrane distillation not only provides drinking water to more people, but also manages the brines and protects the environment. “

But it is not a simple task.

“After many years of work in this area, our group has identified pore wetting as one of the most critical issues in membrane distillation,” concludes Dr. Christopher Lan. “Hooman Chamani took issue with this issue, which resulted in a number of high impact posts. He is one of the best PhD students we have ever had in our lab, and he is driven by one goal: to find a solution for the water crisis by commercializing membrane distillation on a large scale.


Making seawater drinkable in minutes


More information:
Hooman Chamani et al, Pore wetting in membrane distillation: a comprehensive review, Advances in Materials Science (2021). DOI: 10.1016 / j.pmatsci.2021.100843

Provided by the University of Ottawa

Quote: A Student’s Mission to Protect the World’s Most Valuable Resource (2021, August 25) retrieved August 28, 2021 from https://phys.org/news/2021-08-student-mission-world-precious- resource.html

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Letter: Global Peril https://biofera.org/letter-global-peril/ https://biofera.org/letter-global-peril/#respond Mon, 23 Aug 2021 11:03:28 +0000 https://biofera.org/letter-global-peril/

Published: 08/23/2021 07:00:17 AM

In front of us – suddenly! – massive extinction of species, destruction of terrestrial biodiversity. This is due to human changes in our planet’s earth system: its atmosphere (air), hydrosphere (water), cryosphere (ice and permafrost), lithosphere (rock) and biosphere (life). Most of this destruction has taken place since the turn of the 20th century, when the world’s population has almost quadrupled from 2.1 billion to 7.9 billion. We have invaded the planet, especially since the 1950s.

According to the most recent expert assessment, “Greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuel combustion and deforestation are suffocating our planet and putting billions of people in immediate danger. Global warming affects all regions of the Earth, with many changes becoming irreversible. ”(UN IPCC). The ongoing global effort to tackle climate change is coordinated by the UN through the United Nations Framework Agreement on Climate Change, most recently with the 2015 Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

A ‘make or break’ meeting is scheduled for Glasgow in November 2021. We need to keep climate change, now 1.1 degrees centigrade and still rising, to less than 1.5 degrees centigrade (every tenth of a degree is crucial) or face serious consequences for the next generation. We need to allocate a 50% increase in current funding to help people displaced by climate change. May educators, the national press, and each of us drum up warnings, hammer science, knowing that the world can change direction by coming together now and singing the hope that we will.

Nicolas ourusoff

New London

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Development or survival? Imbalance – Ground views https://biofera.org/development-or-survival-imbalance-ground-views/ https://biofera.org/development-or-survival-imbalance-ground-views/#respond Sat, 21 Aug 2021 05:31:33 +0000 https://biofera.org/development-or-survival-imbalance-ground-views/

Photo courtesy of the BBC

Sri Lanka’s country declaration to the 21st Conference of the Parties (known as COP21) to the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, held in Paris in 2015, said: “We are aware of the big difference in carbon dioxide emitted by biological sources. and carbon dioxide emitted from fossil sources. One has sequestration rates measured in thousands of years while the other in millions of years. Yet the cost is still the same. We would ask the IPCC to deal with the relative costs of each. “

Carbon (C) – the fourth most abundant element in the universe, after hydrogen (H), helium (He), and oxygen (O) – is the cornerstone of life. It is the basic building block that anchors all organic substances in fossil fuels to DNA. On earth, carbon travels through the earth, ocean, atmosphere and interior of the earth in a major biogeochemical cycle (the movement of chemical components through the biosphere from or to the lithosphere, atmosphere and hydrosphere). The global carbon cycle can be divided into two categories: the geological / ancient cycle, which operates on large time scales (millions of years), and the biological / modern cycle, which operates on shorter time scales ( days to thousands of years).

The fossil carbon cycle

The workings of life have been clearly shown to change the chemistry of this atmosphere to what it is today. One of the most active agents of this change was / are oceanic plankton, microscopic photosynthetic phytoplankton that produce prodigious amounts of oxygen and biomass over time. Oxygen is released into the atmosphere and the biomass is consumed by the respiration of zooplankton (microscopic marine animals) within days or weeks. Only small amounts of residual carbon from this plankton are deposited on the ocean floor at any given time, but over long periods of time this process represents a significant removal of carbon from the atmosphere. This slow removal of carbon from the primary atmosphere to the fossil reservoir, while creating an atmospheric reservoir of oxygen, had a major effect on the maintenance of biotic homeostasis (any process used by living things to actively maintain fairly stable conditions necessary for survival.)

A similar process repeated itself on the earth, especially during the Devonian era, the enormous mass of vegetation that covered the earth absorbing carbon dioxide and then was mineralized in the lithosphere to coal, effectively removing this volume of carbon dioxide. carbon in the earth’s atmosphere. The oxygen released by these first prodigious forests greatly contributed to the chemistry of the present atmosphere.

Life on earth has learned to maintain optimal gas and material flows for the evolution of biodiversity. Carbon dioxide, although essential to the life process, has been introduced into the atmosphere by volcanic processes at disturbing levels throughout geological history. But the gas did not concentrate in the atmosphere because it was sequestered by living things and taken out of the living carbon biosphere’s circulation. This carbon store has fossilized and slowly accumulated over the past hundreds of millions of years.

Thanks to these processes, which are still active today, the carbon that enters the lithosphere is completely removed from the life cycle and mineralizes in pools that are 100 million years old.

The modern (biotic) carbon cycle

The major exchange of carbon with the atmosphere results from photosynthesis and respiration. During the day of the growing season, the leaves absorb sunlight and absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. In the oceans, the planktonic cycle operates a similar photosynthetic cycle. Both create biomass. At the same time, the plants, animals and microbes in the substrate consume this carbon as organic matter, transform it into the process of respiration, and ultimately release it as carbon dioxide back into the atmosphere.

The overall impact of active photosynthetic biomass can be illustrated by the volume of water released into the atmosphere in the form of water vapor. At a 100: 1 water release rate where more than 100 water molecules are released for every carbon dioxide molecule absorbed by the leaf. The quantity of water cleaned and released annually into the atmosphere by vegetation is between 5,640 and 6,280 billion tonnes.

Over the course of a year, these biological carbon flows cycle more than ten times the amount of carbon introduced into the atmosphere by the combustion of fossil fuels. Atmospheric carbon belongs to the global ecosystem or global commons and has a very important chemical signature and the cyclic movement of biotic carbon occurs in cycles of a few days to thousands of years, but always maintains the same isotope ratio.

It is clear that fossil carbon and biotic carbon have vastly different sinks and must be assessed differently when considering the impact on the global biosphere; it is the post-industrial combustion of fossil carbon that introduces an increasing increase of “new” carbon into the atmosphere.

The current rush to fix the carbon released by burning fossil fuels by planting trees is failing. Extracting and burning carbon that is a hundred million years old and putting it in a tree with a life of a hundred years is not locking it up.

A clear distinction between fossil and biotic energy and attributing differential values ​​to the two sources will go a long way in exposing these dependent economies and helping “developing countries” avoid the pitfalls. The “fossil subsidy” comprising the fossil cost of producing and using the cement necessary for the creation and operation of future “development” projects should become a cost criterion for the acceptance or rejection of future ones. “development” projects.

(Part 4 of this series will be released tomorrow)

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U scientists on the IPCC climate report 2021 https://biofera.org/u-scientists-on-the-ipcc-climate-report-2021/ https://biofera.org/u-scientists-on-the-ipcc-climate-report-2021/#respond Fri, 20 Aug 2021 17:36:08 +0000 https://biofera.org/u-scientists-on-the-ipcc-climate-report-2021/

Last week, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released its sixth report on the current state of the climate. One of the main findings states that “it is unequivocal that human influence has warmed the atmosphere, ocean and land. Widespread and rapid changes in the atmosphere, ocean, cryosphere and biosphere have occurred.

Scientists at the University of Utah from various fields have weighed in on what the report’s findings mean for the future of research and our planet.

Zhaoxia Pu, Professor, Department of Atmospheric Sciences

The IPCC report states that “man-made climate change is already affecting many extreme weather and climate events in all regions of the world. The evidence for changes seen in extremes such as heat waves, heavy rainfall, droughts and tropical cyclones… and their attribution to human influence has grown.

It also states that “if global warming increases, some extreme events compounded with low probability in past and current climate will become more frequent, and there will be a higher probability that events with intensities, durations and / or Increased spatial expanses unprecedented in an observational recording will take place.

Concerns about extreme weather and climate events will lead to more active research in forecasting weather and climate extremes, in particular their frequency of occurrence, intensity, duration, spatial structure and environmental consequences on local areas, because most of these extremes occur at the regional level. Meanwhile, as extreme weather and climate conditions have significant influences on ecosystem and agriculture, accurate weather and climate predictions will become vital for human decisions regarding event prevention and planning. Therefore, we foresee an increased interest in the development of advanced meteorological and climate computer models, in particular the coupled models of the Earth system with treatment of the interactions between the different components of the climate system, including the atmosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere, the earth’s surface and the biosphere.

William Anderegg, Associate Professor, School of Biological Sciences

This report is an incredibly clear and compelling digest of the science that man-made climate change is unequivocal and likely to get worse if we don’t take swift action on carbon emissions. He points out that climate change is already having major impacts on the western United States, especially in terms of strong heat waves, prolonged drought and wildfires. The footprints of climate change on these impacts – which we see around us, every year now – have become much clearer over the past five years. For example, climate change is responsible for half or more of the area burned by wildfires in the western United States, as well as all of the air pollution caused by the fires we breathe.

Summer Rupper, Professor, Department of Geography

The IPCC report highlights the harsh reality that the global average temperature is warmer now than it has been for the past 125,000 years. This warming and warming of the Earth has far-reaching effects on all Earth systems. As an example, the IPCC report summarizes the observations of significant decreases in the volume of mountain glaciers and the seasonal extent of the snowpack over the past decades. These changes in snow and ice impact hundreds of millions of people living in and downstream of these systems. As warming continues, glaciers and snowpack will continue to shrink, further depleting water resources derived from snow and ice, increasing the risk of flooding, reducing the reliability of hydroelectric power, affecting mountain tourism, among a myriad of other effects. The IPCC report helps re-energize efforts to improve our understanding of these essential water resources, how they respond to climate change, and the impacts on people living around the world, from the Himalayas to the West American intermountain.

McKenzie Skiles, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography

The most recent IPCC report and a recent one special report on oceans and cryosphere, summarizes that seasonal snow cover is declining, with the extent of snow cover in the northern hemisphere decreasing by about 8% for every 1o warming. This is due to more precipitation falling as rain (at lower elevations) and earlier melt (at all elevations). The decline in snow cover is mainly attributed to warming air temperature, but it has also been recognized that the darkening of snow due to the deposition of aerosols related to human activity, such as soot and dust, also contributes to earlier melting, and this is a growing area of ​​research. A shrinking snowpack has an impact on mountain ecosystems, economies and regional hydrology; Like many areas downstream from mountain springs, the western United States relies on the regularity and magnitude of seasonal snowmelt to meet water demands, and snow hydrologists are actively trying to improve forecasting methods that can capture the new variability introduced by climate change, including the timing of earlier runoff and reduction in the volume of seasonal runoff and groundwater recharge.

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Understanding the concept of ecocide https://biofera.org/understanding-the-concept-of-ecocide/ https://biofera.org/understanding-the-concept-of-ecocide/#respond Mon, 16 Aug 2021 19:14:06 +0000 https://biofera.org/understanding-the-concept-of-ecocide/

The recent proposal for a definition of ecocide by the Stop Ecocide Foundation to be included in the Rome Statute as the fifth main crime along with the crime of genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and the crime of aggression has sparked academic and political debate around the world. . While the very concept of “ecocide” has become popular in recent times, the term was first coined in 1970 by Arthur Galston, an American biologist, at the Conference on War and National Responsibility. Galson used the term “ecocide” to raise concerns about the overuse of the defoliant agent Orange which was used to inflict environmental damage during the Vietnam War.

The word ecocide comes from the Greek oikos which means house, and the Latin word cedar means an act of killing or demolition. Therefore, the term “ecocide” simply means “to kill our house”. The recent definition of ecocide by the Group of Independent Experts is “unlawful or indiscriminate acts committed with the knowledge that there is a substantial probability of serious and widespread or long-term damage to the environment caused by such acts” in proposed article 8b. Here, the word “shameless” has been explained by “reckless contempt” in order to consider an act as ecocidal. Such a reckless act which would end up causing “serious negative changes, disturbance or damage to any element of the environment” and such damage would “extend beyond a limited geographical area, cross the borders of a state or [be] suffered by an entire ecosystem or a species or a large number of human beings. ”The proposed article also states that the damage caused by the crime of ecocide must be“ irreversible or cannot be repaired within a reasonable time ”. And for the purposes of the application of Article 8 ter, the word “environment” has been defined to include “the earth, its biosphere, its cryosphere, its lithosphere, its hydrosphere and its atmosphere, as well as space. outer “.

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Unlike genocide, the panel’s definition of ecocide was provided without having the requirement to mens rea or specific intent and thus disclosing itself as a strict liability offense. The reasoning behind the proposition of ecocide as a strict liability offense is that environmental damage is generally the indirect result of productivity, and therefore it is hardly possible to establish a direct intention when it is it is environmental damage. Here it can be said that the term ecocide has been used to describe the severity of environmental damage and its devastating impact on our mother earth by establishing that large-scale environmental damage should no longer be subject to certain evidence. However, it should be noted that the crime of ecocide primarily focuses on the massive destruction of the environment and does not necessarily include the little ones.

Although the proposed definition of ecocide to criminalize the act of ecological mass destruction seems a viable solution to protect our ecosystem, also recognizing that the implementation of such a proposal might face certain difficulties and challenges. For example, some argue that the knowledge requirement (in indiscriminate acts) to determine whether an act will cause excessive damage to the environment relative to anticipated socio-economic developments is almost impossible to prove and will create evidentiary barriers. Another challenge would be the burden of the ICC with a large number of cases unless there is a specific forum to deal only with ecocide cases. In addition, cases of the crime of ecocide should be brought against individuals representing companies or against states where the activities of the company are based since companies would not be held liable directly under the Rome Statute. And this will undoubtedly lead to strong opposition to the inclusion of ecocide as an international crime given the strong economic interests involved within these societies.

Apart from this, the alignment of ecocide with international environmental law (IEL) would be a stumbling block since criminal law focuses on the requirement of precision and predictability while the law of the The environment demands “a balance and compromises with few hard and clear prohibitions”. Last but not least, some commentators identify that since the proposed definition attempts to balance socio-economic interests with environmental damage, the term “ecocide” itself is not ecocentric and therefore “not ecocide” at all. However, some may find it surprising, the IEL itself is not purely eco-centric, rather it is an approach that motivates humans to adopt environmental protections by enabling the advancement of environmental law.

Needless to say, despite some challenges, the proposed crime of ecocide suggests a plausible solution to protect our planet by making polluters criminally responsible for massive destruction of the ecosystem. It gives seriousness to our understanding of nature, reminds us that the earth is our home and that we must take viable measures to protect it. The crime of ecocide also expresses the seriousness of the environmental damage, the urgency to reduce the massive destruction caused to the environment, and therefore urges that such an act of mass destruction of the environment no longer be considered as ” second class crime ”. Finally, he once again reminds us that protecting our environment is protecting yourself. It therefore deserves a serious commitment on the part of the international community as a whole.

The writer is a law student at the University of Dhaka.

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