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Kiana Frias, March 18, 2013

Hi Im Kiana from JMMA in Florida. Wanna know all the footprints I leave behind? They come from my farts. They emit more pollution to our atmosphere then all the vehicles in the world combined. Pretty powerful stuff I got here.

Kiana Frias
Comments (4)
  • Isiah Smith Isiah Smith March 20, 2013
    Eat less beans
  • May 15, 2013
    very much ewwwww from you.
  • adrian a-usa adrian a-usa Oct. 3, 2013
    fart next to a plant or put a indoor plant at least next to your window
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Discussions Discussion Pollution
Alba Rodríguez, Nov. 15, 2012

Hello! We are two science students for the contemporary world. We live in Santiago de Compostela, Galicia (Spain). It is a beautiful city famous for its ancient pilgrimage route, where thousands of people around the world come every year to see the beautiful old cathedral. Today we are taking a topic in class on pollution and resource consumption harmful to the environment such as oil, coal … doing surveys on the amount of consumption of each individual month. We wish you give us your opinion on this issue because we would like to know how this issue is handled in different countries and cities, and thus give us help and knowledge to the development of our project. Kind regards and hope your answers.

Alba Rodríguez
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Discussions Discussion The Danger of Fireworks
Amaryllis F-USA, Nov. 14, 2012

Hi my name is Amaryllis, and I am from the USA. Every year, in my country, the 4th of July (out independence day) is celebrated with fireworks. The American Pyrotechnics Association, estimates that 18,000 fireworks shows will occur across the U.S. this Fourth of July. This does not include backyard fireworks which have seen a tremendous growth in sales. Since 2000, the sales of backyard fireworks have doubled resulting in over 238 million pounds of fireworks being fired off each year. Fireworks are a major danger to our environment as a whole, and the health of the people living in that environment.

It is estimated that the annual U.S. carbon dioxide emissions from fireworks is 60,340 tons or the same emissions from 12,000 cars on the road for a year. Another threat posed by fireworks is the eventual bioaccumulation of chemicals in the land and water. Some specific chemicals which may bio-accumulate are copper compounds, which make the blues in fireworks, (they also pose a possible cancer risk.) and lead dioxide / nitrate, (these pose a serious health risk too, developmental danger for kids & unborn babes), which may remain airborne for days, poisonous to plants & animals.

Fireworks also pose serious health risks to humans, and other animals. Fireworks contain many dangerous compounds, which can adversely impact people, and their health example:
1. Arsenic compounds, which are used as colorants, form toxic ash can cause lung cancer, skin irritation and wart formation
2. Barium Nitrate which are used to produce glittering greens, are poisonous, (the fumes can irritate respiratory tract) and there is a chance of possible radioactive fallout.
On a different note, fireworks also contribute to the ever growing threat of acid rain. Sulfur Dioxide, a gaseous byproduct of sulfur combustion, affects water sources, by increasing their acidity. This acid water then turns in to rain, and when it comes down, it causes harm to vegetation and property damage too.

Fireworks are a major threat, to people and the environment, so next time you go to a firework show, ask yourself, “do I really want to participate in the impending distruction of the enviroment?”

http://des.nh.gov/organization/commissioner/pip/factsheets/bb/documents/bb-60.pdf; http://www.backcountryattitude.com/toxic_fireworks.html#Toxic-Elements; http://www.greenandsave.com/green_news/green_
Amaryllis F-USA
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Discussions Discussion Is Climate Change Mitigation 100% Beneficial?
Nathan L-US, Oct. 1, 2012

I feel as though there are several misconceptions as to what Climate Change does and how it directly effects us. What are your positions when it comes to the mitigation of Climate Change, and how would follow through with to have a significant international impact?

Nathan L-US
Comments (10)
  • Jose Pelcastre Jose Pelcastre Oct. 2, 2012
    You know, I think you have a point. Recently I’ve been doing research on global warming and found that it's not actually CO2 that's causing global warming, but methane released by, believe it or not, cow farts. As Noam Mohr, a physicist with degrees from Yale and Penn, says, the most prominent reason for global warming is really methane. An excerpt from one of articles says “By far the most important non-CO2 greenhouse gas is methane, and the number one source of methane worldwide is animal agriculture. Methane is responsible for nearly as much global warming as all other non-CO2 greenhouse gases put together. Methane is 21 times more powerful a greenhouse gas than CO2. While atmospheric concentrations of CO2 have risen by about 31% since pre-industrial times, methane concentrations have more than doubled. Whereas human sources of CO2 amount to just 3% of natural emissions, human sources produce one and a half times as much methane as all natural sources. In fact, the effect of our methane emissions may be compounded as methane-induced warming in turn stimulates microbial decay of organic matter in wetlands—the primary natural source of methane. “
    But I think it’s not just that the costs are too high, as your point shows, rather that it’s possibly too late to do anything at all. Prof. Veerabhadran Ramanathan, a Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric and Climate Science at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and the University of California at San Diego, and Dr Nithya Ramanathan, a Fellow at the Centre of Embedded Networked Sensing at the University of California at Los Angeles and Presiden Nexleaf Analytics, along with the Carnegie Institution for Science Department of Global Ecology say that because CO2 actually stays in the air for very prolonged periods of time. I quote, “carbon dioxide emissions remain in the atmosphere for many centuries, because the ocean and vegetation on land absorb carbon dioxide only slowly over time. As a result, there is a warming effect long after the initial clearing of land… the relatively large amount of carbon dioxide that we are emitting today will continue to have relatively large impacts on the atmosphere and climate for many centuries into the future. “
  • Jose Pelcastre Jose Pelcastre Oct. 2, 2012
    Also, Indean Salehyan, the Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of North Texas says that it’s really just bad allocation of resources and that it is often used as an end to some unjustifiable mean. Focusing on climate change in general as a violent threat acts as a diversion to catastrophe-relief and technology, according to a 2007 article. “These claims generally boil down to an argument about resource scarcity. Desertification, sea-level rise, more-frequent severe weather events, an increased geographical range of tropical disease, and shortages of freshwater will lead to violence over scarce necessities. Friction between haves and have-nots will increase, and governments will be hard-pressed to provide even the most basic services. In some scenarios, mass migration will ensue, whether due to desertification, natural disasters, and rising sea levels, or as a consequence of resource wars. Environmental refugees will in turn spark political violence in receiving areas, and countries in the global North will erect ever higher barriers to keep culturally unwelcome and hungry foreigners out. The number of failed states, meanwhile, will increase as governments collapse in the face of resource wars and weakened state capabilities, and transnational terrorists and criminal networks will move in. International wars over depleted water and energy supplies will also intensify. The basic need for survival will supplant nationalism, religion, or ideology as the fundamental root of conflict.¶ Dire scenarios like these may sound convincing, but they are misleading. Even worse, they are irresponsible, for they shift liability for wars and human rights abuses away from oppressive, corrupt governments. Additionally, focusing on climate change as a security threat that requires a military response diverts attention away from prudent adaptation mechanisms and new technologies that can prevent the worst catastrophes.”
    I have a a ton of evidence also that talks about how warming is actually good for biodiversity, but I want to hear what others have to say as well.
  • Jose Pelcastre Jose Pelcastre Oct. 2, 2012
    Owais Safaraz, I feel like the majority of the fight against mitigating climae change isn't done at home, because unless everyone switches to electrical cars, there isn't really a viable way for people to contribute to the fight against global warming. But that's okay, as Nathan Leal pointed to earlier, the government cannot possible, within our current limitations, “fix” climate change.
    However, my research, as mentioned earlier, could provide a solution that people at home could live by. As Mohr wrote, “The conclusion is simple: arguably the best way to reduce global warming in our lifetimes is to reduce or eliminate our consumption of animal products. Simply by going vegetarian (or, strictly speaking, vegan), we can eliminate one of the major sources of emissions of methane, the greenhouse gas responsible for almost half of the global warming impacting the planet today.” Of course, that means we have to do something with the cows, so it's almost called upon that we eliminate the cows in order to stop methane emissions at the source. That's not going to happen any time soon.
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Discussions Discussion Clean development
Samantha Rowling, March 1, 2012

Chicago Quits Coal Burning Power Plants!

Midwest Generation, a subsidiary of Edison International, will retire its Fisk and Crawford coal plants (Chicago), two of the oldest and dirtiest coal-fired power plants in the nation.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=0U-hZjIfUVU
Samantha Rowling
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Discussions Discussion Sustainable city
srini n, Feb. 22, 2012

A recent poll from Ipsos/Reuters shows the extent of workplace evolution as well as the fallout of globalization. Nearly 1 in 5 (17%) of the over 11,000 users from 24 countries polled online indicated that they work exclusively and/or consistently from home. Telecommuting is most popular in regions with emerging markets, such as Asia-Pacific (24%), the Middle East and Africa (27%), and Latin America (25%), while North America and Europe (both at 9%) lag significantly behind.

But the winner is India with 82% telecommuting at least once a week and 57% working remotely on a routine basis. Compare this to the U.S. where 26% are working remotely at least once a week with only 10% respondents doing so consistently.”

http://singularityhub.com/2012/02/21/u-s-being-left-in-the-dust-of-the-global-telecommuting-revolution/?utm_source=Singularity Hub Daily Newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=5cbc49a775-RSS_EMAIL_C
srini n
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Discussions Discussion Welcome to Einztein
Marco Masoni, Feb. 16, 2012

ISCFC (carbon footprint challenge) participants… here is an excerpt from a thoughtful article in The Scientist that discusses the indirect impact that climate change may have on human health.

The Coming Health Crisis
By Samuel S. Myers and Aaron Bernstein

Human activity is disrupting Earth’s climate, and the rising emissions of greenhouse gases are accelerating that disruption. (See “Our Changing Climate” box below) Some of the health consequences of climate change are straightforward: warmer temperatures, changes in the hydrologic cycle, increased ground-level ozone, and enhanced pollen production will increase exposure to heat stress, alter patterns of infectious disease, and compromise air quality.

However, we believe that there is another threat, one that is orders of magnitude more potent than those which have been emphasized to date. Here we argue that it is the indirect impacts of climate change—large-scale alterations to Earth’s natural systems—that pose the greatest risk to human health. These changes are curtailing access to water and to food and are undermining the very concept of stable homes, yet have received scant attention in the literature…”

http://the-scientist.com/2011/01/01/the-coming-health-crisis/
Marco Masoni
Comments (2)
  • srini n srini n Feb. 16, 2012
    Thnaks Marco. But the link was not working (404 error)

    Here is an alternative I found to the same material (I guess)
    http://f1000.com/reports/b/3/3/

    “The coming health crisis: indirect health effects of global climate change
    Samuel S. Myers1 and Aaron Bernstein2”
  • Marco Masoni Marco Masoni Feb. 17, 2012
    Thanks, Srini. I fixed the link.

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Discussions Discussion Health & Environment
Nina Dumas, Nov. 26, 2011

EU Air Pollution Costs Exceed $134 Billion — COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Air pollution isn’t just harmful — it’s expensive, resulting in health care and environmental costs of more than €100 billion ($130 billion) in 2009, the European Union’s environment agency said Thursday.

http://www.salon.com/2011/11/24/eu_agency_air_pollution_costs_exceed_134_billion/

The energy sector had the highest pollution costs, followed by manufacturing and production processes, according to the report by the European Environment Agency. The findings underscore the environmental and health impacts of fossil fuel-based power generation

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eGxnH5ejFfc
Nina Dumas
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Discussions Discussion Health & Environment
Reese Turlington, Nov. 24, 2011

Lawsuit Filed Against EPA to Protect Public Health From Coal-mine Air Pollution: “It’s time to stop giving the coal industry a free pass to pollute the air we depend upon for our health, well-being, and our safety,” said Jeremy Nichols, climate and energy program director for WildEarth Guardians, one of four groups bringing the lawsuit. “With coal mines spewing methane, dust, toxic orange clouds, and other dangerous gases, we need a national response that puts clean air first. We need EPA to take action.” Follow link for more…

http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/news/press_releases/2011/coal-mine-pollution-11-23-2011.html
Reese Turlington
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