Save Frankincense: Overharvesting of a precious commodity and approaches to ensure sustainability

Frankincense resin is highly sought after and as a consequence, frankincense-bearing trees are being overharvested.

In Somaliland, a northern area of Somalia that operates as an independent country, many of the population rely on frankincense for income. Frankincense is a resin derived from the Boswellia tree. However, the trees are being overharvested, and locals have found themselves in a poverty trap. Despite a huge increase in the price of frankincense on the global market, harvesters […]

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Cradle-to-Cradle principles change how products are designed

Cradle-to-Cradle principles change how products are designed

Industry from the very beginning has treated natural resources as essentially infinite, and the world’s capacity to accommodate waste with the same regard. As the economy becomes global, we now understand this is not true – so the way we make products also should change. EPEA Switzerland has developed ‘Reference Model Cradle-to-Cradle Design Innovations’. Their reference model works for every product […]

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Rice husk biochar with beneficial microbes: A promising agricultural inoculant and soil ameliorant

Rice husk biochar has traditionally been used in Japan as a soil ameliorant.

The research of Shohei Ebe and Takashi Ano from Kindai University into the relationship between a microbe and rice husk biochar (RHB) suggest the latter is an activator of beneficial microbes that can be used to combat phytopathogenic microorganisms. Having isolated a novel lipopeptide producing Bacillus sp. that benefits from RHB presence in the soil, these are promising insights into […]

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Sustainable water purification using biomass

Nanoscale cellulose materials obtained from the chemical treatment of biomass are very effective agents for the removal of toxic species from water, including heavy metal ions. Professor Benjamin S. Hsiao and his collaborators at Stony Brook University have developed a simple, inexpensive and environmentally friendly approach to preparing nanostructured cellulose for water purification, based on a nitro-oxidation reaction carried out […]

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Setting new horizons in electroplating of zinc die castings

zinc die casting Valeriia Reveko

Our supply of zinc, a metal abundant in our planet’s crust, could run out by 2100 unless we begin to change the way we use it. Collini Holding AG creates a step change in uncovering and addressing the core causes of common faults of plating on zinc die cast by investigating this material and the ways of it surface finishing […]

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Into the deep: understanding swordfish eco-physiology

a research article about Drs Diego Bernal and Chugey Sepulveda are studying swordfish eco-physiology to understand how they are able to adapt to extreme conditions in the wild.

Cold-blooded vertebrates, such as fish, are extremely susceptible to changes in the temperature of their surroundings. Yet one successful ocean predator, the swordfish, migrates from tropical to temperate seas, and dives daily from warm surface waters to cooler depths, with seeming ease. Drs Diego Bernal and Chugey Sepulveda of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and the Pfleger Institute of Environmental […]

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A sustainable approach to environmental management

A science research article about the Sustainable RIVER project: training students to become leaders in interdisciplinary research and in creating a more sustainable society through their appreciation of using a multi-perspective, systems-thinking

Ten faculty members from the University of South Dakota and eleven undergraduate students from across the United States including Puerto Rico, came together through the Sustainable RIVER (Remediating InVasives to Encourage Resilience) program to study how a complex suite of historical and contemporary factors affect the current functioning and management of the Upper Missouri River. Most of society’s grand challenges […]

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