Archive by Author | laurenm0017

Red Tide

What do you think of when you hear the phrase “Red Tide”? Well,I found an article that refers to the rapid reproduction of algae  a.k.a. “red tide”. Algae  can color large bodies of water red or green (the color depends on the species of algae). Recently in Australia, many beaches closed due to the bloody red water. So how dangerous are algae blooms? Some species of algae cause certain diseases or poisonings.

So can red tides hurt humans? It depends on the species that’s blooming, said Gilly. Blooms of certain dinoflagellates are associated with saxitoxin, a shellfish toxin that can cause paralytic shellfish poisoning in people. “If it’s in a harbor or contained bay, it’s probably a serious matter,” he said.

Algae not only hurts humans, algae blooms can harm the environment and all living in it severely:

Large red tides can be harmful to fish, said Lauren Freeman, a Ph.D. candidate at Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego, California. “As the algae die and sink in the shallow coastal water, they decompose and oxygen is taken from the water column. This can lead to temporary low oxygen zones,” she added. These zones can kill marine animals if the oxygen depletion is severe enough.

The low oxygen zones are also known as dead zones. These dead zones can form anywhere the levels of algae increase.

Clovelly Beach in Australia

Clovelly Beach in Australia taken by Craig Greenhill

Once I read through the article, the little explanation of the cause of algae blooms inspired me to continue searching. I found another article that describes the reason of more recent algae blooms:

Read More…

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Rebuild Our World One House at a Time

Life always seems complicated. The typical family juggles school, work, healthcare, and bills. Their normal everyday schedules prove too “busy” to worry about the environment. The truth actually is they suffer from a common disease called laziness. Simple changes can help the environment in major ways and just by updating technologies in your home you can live comfortably and green. The VISION House houses all the green technologies in one model.

Where can you find this house? Well, the Green Builder Media group partnered with Disney INNOVENTIONS to make the earth greener by lowering CO2 emissions in family lifestyles and using up less of the earth’s natural resources by recycling. The groups worked together to build a model of the VISION House in INNOVENTIONS at Epcot (in Orlando, Florida). Sara Gutterman, the CEO of Green Builder Media, states that their partnership with Disney INNOVENTIONS can greatly influence the public use of green technologies:

Disney already has sustainability programs, including Environmentality, Friends of Change, and their $15.5 million Climate Solutions Fund. Adding a highly visible, consumer-friendly model green home to the Orlando park seemed like a perfect fit..

Disney’s team likes to quote Walt, so we’ll do the same: “The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.” So, we’re marching into the belly of the beast—the heart of American culture—using the magic of storytelling to plant seeds of sustainable thinking in collaboration with one of the most powerful consumer brands in this very ‘small world.’

The VISION House holds tours that show all the green technologies.

The structure of a green house includes Boral bricks and stone, high performance windows, “Smog-eating” tile, solar panels and a neighborhood sized wind turbine. Now I know what you are thinking: how does this stuff help the environment? Well, let me explain. The Boral Company creates energy efficient, low maintenance, and durable products for construction.  They make bricks, pavers, roof tiles and many other products. Boral and Green Builder Media partnered to help the green initiative. The high performance windows use remote controls to control the blinds. “Smog-eating” tiles contain catalysts that speed up oxidation when exposed to sunlight. The exposure to sunlight causes the catalysts to suck up pollution in the environment. Solar panels are an efficient addition for use in sunny places.

Inside you can find things like EPA WaterSense certified toilets, Energy Star TV, fire sprinklers, rain sensing lawn sprinklers and much more.  A private constructor or yourself can install all of the appliances. You can also make recycled decorations like a plastic bag rug. The Green Builder Media website has many hands-on instructions and videos.

By following the videos, rebuilding your home or adding a few new additions our planet can be influenced greatly. You can be the change.

Is It Bye-Bye for Nemo?

Who doesn’t love or at least like the Disney movie Finding Nemo? The anemone home of Nemo and his father lies in a coral reef.  Well, Nemo and Marlin are the lucky ones. Many clownfish and other sea creatures suffer the loss of their beloved home The Great Barrier Reef.

The Great Barrier Reef, Australia’s biggest attraction, houses the world’s largest coral reef ecosystem. Sadly, during the past 27 years, half of the reef vanished. Katharina Fabricius, a coral reef ecologist at the Australian Institute of Marine Science, said, “I hear of the changes anecdotally, but this is the first long-term look at the overall status of the reef. There are still a lot of fish, and you can see giant clams, but not the same color and diversity as in the past.” She and her colleagues found an overall 50% decrease in corral reefs, about a 3.4% decrease a year. On a particular note of interest, they discovered that the northern reefs suffered no decline in the past to decades. Read More…

Is The Great Global Warming Swindle a Swindle of its own?

First, I want to say global warming is real! Whether or not you believe that it is anthropogenic is your own choice. I am going to talk about errors found in the movie The Great Global Warming Swindle from two different sources, the first being a movie on YouTube, The Big Swindle Movie, and the next being an article I found on the internet.

In The Big Swindle Movie, Peter Sinclair reveals that The Great Global Warming Swindle has some hidden flaws. The most commonly viewed versions clearly state that volcanoes emit more CO2 than all of the earth’s man made sources of CO2 combined. However, Peter Sinclair mentions a website that says humans emit more than 130 times the amount of CO2 that volcanoes emit. That is the equivalent of 8000 more volcanoes like Kilauea.

So I checked the website. It took a little reading, but I discovered humans emit more CO2 than volcanoes. In the “Volcanic Gases and Climate Change Overview” article, a provided link goes to a PDF file dealing specifically with volcanic and anthropogenic CO2 emissions: Read More…