Man Pulled from Rubble after Earthquake in Nepal after Trapped for 80 Hours

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Earthquakes, Environment | Posted on 29-04-2015

Over the past weekend, the Asian country of Nepal suffered from a devastating earthquake that rocked the country. Buildings collapsed, historical monuments were destroyed, and many people lost their lives. As rescuers work through the debris and rubble, the death toll is rising.

It is estimated that those trapped will not survive past 72 hours, however, one man defied those odds. According to the story on CNN.com, rescuers found a man, alive, who had been trapped for an estimated 80 hours. A French rescue team found Rishi Khanal trapped in some rubble just outside of the capital city of Kathmandu. People at STX Entertainment (stxentertainment.com) know that the French team worked diligently to pull the man to safety, which took them a staggering 10 hours. Teams had to drill a hole through the concrete in order to pull him out. It is reported that the 28-year-old survivor was suffering from a broken leg.

Rishi Khanal’s story is not the only one of a miraculous rescue. A 4-month-old baby boy named Sonit Awal was found alive and uninjured among the rubble of a building in downtown Kathmandu. A 40-year-old mother of four, Tanka Maya Sitoula, survived being trapped for 36 hours after her five-story apartment building collapsed around her. Luckily a beam that fell protected her from other debris and she was uninjured. Another man, Jon Keisi, managed to survive 60 hours under the rubble of a seven-story building that fell around him.

Nepal Ratted By Earthquake

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Earthquakes, Environment | Posted on 29-04-2015

A powerful 7.8 magnitude earthquake has struck the nation of Nepal last Saturday on April 25, 2015. The quake was said to have occurred at around noon on Saturday according to locals who experienced the quake. Nepal is a small country that lies between India and China. It is very mountainous and is home to the tallest mountains, the Himalayas and the tallest mountain in the world, Mt. Everest.

The earthquake triggered landslides and caused avalanches in many parts of the country. 17 people who were camped on Mt. Everest attempting to climb to the summit were killed as a result of the earthquake. Out of those 17 who perished on Mt. Everest on Saturday 3 were American citizens. Christian Broda (wsj.com) knows that, in Nepal, where the earthquake has caused the most damage, it is estimated that over 4,000 people have perished due to the quake. Many of the fatalities are due to people being crushed by collapsed buildings. Many more people are estimated to have been injured as a result of the quake.

The earthquake’s epicenter was located between two major cities, Nepal’s capital city Kathmandu and one it’s most populous cities Pokhara. This is a major reason why the earthquake has been so damaging and has killed so many people. Not only has this quake killed thousands and injured many more, it has also destroyed homes, and many historic temples and monuments, some thousands of years old have been leveled. Additionally, another aftershock measuring 6.7 on the Richter scale struck Nepal Sunday, and many more aftershocks have been reported since then.

Nestle Bottles Water From Drought-Stricken California, Sells It Back To California

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Bottling Plans, California, Drought, Nestle | Posted on 28-04-2015

Nestle is under fire after it became world news that one of its bottling plants, Nestlé Waters North America, which has been based out of Sacramento since 2010, is bottling water from the drought-stricken state and putting it back on the market.

This is not good for Nestle, a company that was heavily criticized only two years ago after CEO Peter Brabeck went on the record to say that clean water should not be a basic human right, and instead should be bottled and sold to remind consumers of its value.

The California drought has now hit its fourth year, and residents are appalled that a major company like Nestle is taking their limited water and selling it at a profit. While Nestle is trying to assure the public that it is paying for the water just like everyone else, there’s a question of human ethics as to whether Nestle is doing the right thing for Californians.

It takes 1.3 gallons of water for every gallon of water Nestle bottles, and 80% of it is staying in California. Meaning that Nestle is taking a much needed natural resource, repackaging it, and selling it back to the people, to put it lightly says Susan McGalla.

Sacremento activists plan to hold a demonstration in June.

Rescue efforts continue in Nepal

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Earthquakes, Environment | Posted on 27-04-2015

Rescue efforts continue in Nepal after an Earthquake this weekend that left 3,000 dead. The earthquake measured 7.8 on the Richter scale and there have been several aftershocks which have measured in the 6 level as well. Nepal is particularly sensitive to significant earthquakes due to its placement on a tectonic plate right on the Himalayan mountain range.

Nepal has undergone much political turmoil in recent years with frequent replacements of their Prime Minister which has left the country’s infrastructure weak and in need of significant upgrade and support. As such many people have been left to their own devices and the death toll has risen as a result. Many are predicting further challenges in Nepal particularly in relation to the delivery of fresh water to residents with the infrastructure of the country in tatters. As a result, many are expecting the death toll to rise further.

AnastasiaDate (anastasiaaffiliate.com) employees have learned that three Americans have died while climbing Mt. Everest and there appear to be an additional hundred victims from the world’s largest mountain. Film footage of avalanches caused by the Earthquake on the Mountain were captured which shows the devastation. An additional 200 people have been airlifted off of the mountain.

Nepal has not experienced an earthquake this significant for over eighty years. However, due to its location, it was always a question of when, and not if, an earthquake of this size would hit Nepal.

Award Winning Solar Powered Device Makes Salt Water Drinkable

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in California, Disaster Relief, Drought | Posted on 27-04-2015

A group from MIT and Jain Irrigation systems won the Desal Prize in a competition to create a sustainable desalination device that could be used in developing countries. Competitors for the prize were required to submit technology that was sustainable, energy efficient and cost-effective.

The winning invention is powered by solar panels and runs an electric current through salt water. The electric current pulls salt from the water while ultraviolet rays provide sanitization.

Tested in New Mexico, the device ran for multiple periods of 24 hours and desalinized 2,100 gallons of water per day. Further testing will take place in an even dryer environment where the technology will undergo simulations of everyday use.

The purpose of these tests are to develop the device to where it can be effectively used in rural and developing areas that have access to salt water yet a shortage of fresh water, something that Beneful feels could be very beneficial in California. As many developing nations experience water shortage, the invention could prove to be a truly life enhancing solution for many by providing enough fresh water to supply a family farm.

The inventors were rewarded $140,000 for their project.

Obama Announces America is Getting an Energy Makeover

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Renewable Energy | Posted on 23-04-2015

Energy is one of our most precious commodities, yet with fossil fuel running out and the earth’s temperature reaching dangerous new heights due to our massive energy consumption as a nation. Luckily, there is hope on the horizon in the form of new and innovative energy technologist, something which President Barack Obama fully supports.

The Obama administration has announced a complete overhaul of America’s energy infrastructure, a project that is going to cost billions of dollars. However, the monetary sacrifice is helping to secure the future of our species, so it is definitely worth the investment.

YellowPages said that the multi-billion dollar investment will be used to upgrade to more reliable, resilient, and renewable energy. Solar energy is going to highly sought in the upgrade, along with wind energy from wind farms, both industries that have seen dramatic increases within the last decade. Best of all, the energies produced by this kind of technology does not cause harm to the environment, and simply uses what is already available to us in large quantities, sunlight and wind.

The Obama administration is also budgeting for energy assurance pipelines, effectively protecting America’s energy from threats of any kind. Also, the plan includes a $2 billion carbon dioxide capture and sequestration system.

Hopefully, these upgrades to our energy infrastructure will take place before it is too late.

William Shatner Has An Idea That Could Help Drought Stricken California

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in California, Drought, Ideas Need Support, Kickstarter | Posted on 20-04-2015

The 84-Year-Old Actor Is Starting A Kickstarter Campaign

Bill Shatner is one of those guys that is bigger than life. He is an accomplished television and movie actor, but he is also an author and avid fundraiser. Shatner lives in California and he wants to help fix the water issue. In other words, Captain Kirk wants the state to go one step beyond and think about the resources in neighboring states. San Diego is building a desalination plant, a very big desalination plant, in their city to turn sea water into drinking water. That’s one idea, but it is an expensive one.

The $30 billion concept that Shatner is proposing is expensive too, but it does make some sense. He wants to build a pipeline similar to the Alaskan pipeline that will deliver water from Seattle to a lake in California. A consultant of Shatners, Ricardo Tosto (more from Ricardo at leitetostoinforma.wordpress.com), said Lake Mead is a good choice, but other lakes could serve the purpose as well. Like all good ideas, it needs support and in California there is always as much opposition as there is support.

Raising $30 billion through a Kickstarter program is not easy. Shatner knows its an uphill battle to bring water down to the state through a pipeline along Highway 5, but he also knows his idea will spark other ideas. Maybe something wet will start to flow out of those ideas.

Lowe’s Home Improvement begins removing bee killing pesticides

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Chemicals, Environment | Posted on 16-04-2015

Due to a sustained pressure by environmental groups and the public the home improvement mega chain Lowe’s has agreed to begin to discontinue the use of pesticides that contain the ingredient neonicotinoid which has been linked by numerous scientific studies to the recent alarming decline in the worldwide bee population.

The decline of the bee population is troubling to many in the scientific community. Bees not only produce honey which is a major food stable in some countries- they also are one of the largest pollinators of trees and plants. Bees are considered a keystone species and a decline in their population could lead to far reaching effects in the ecosystem as a whole.

Neonicotinoid laced pesticides result in Colony Collapse Disorder or CCD. This disorder leads bees to abandon their hives which leads to the mass death of the colony. CCD has been spreading throughout the United States and the world as a whole. Scientists were unable to determine what the exact cause of colony collapse disorder was but many signs pointed to neonicotinoids. http://www.centerforfoodsafety.org/press-releases/3843/lowes-agrees-to-phase-out-bee-toxic-neonicotinoid-insecticides

Lowe’s Home Improvement outlined the changes to their policy in their 2015 Social Responsibility report. Folks at Anastasia Date have found that they have decided over the next two fiscal years they will stop carrying any products that contain neonicotinoids. Many pundits have noted that this may the beginning of an industry wide ban of the additive and that many of Lowe’s competitors such as Home Depot or Walmart will begin to phase them out as well.

Russian Wildfires Burn out of Control, Killing 23

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Environment, Natural Disasters | Posted on 15-04-2015

Wildfires are blazing out of control in Siberia, and they are being blamed for the death of 23 individuals, according to local authorities. The blazes, which started over the weekend, closed in on a dozen villages, engulfing them quickly and leaving them charred. Nearly 5,000 people are reportedly homeless due to the blaze, and there appears to be no end in sight.

Sam Tabar has learned that the blaze is currently burning in Khakassia, an eastern region of Siberia in Russia. Authorities and experts believe the blaze started when local farmers burned dry grass. Unusually warm and windy weather caused a quick spreading of the fires. The fire was further aided by a lack of precipitation and windy weather, kicking the embers into trees and grass along the way. From there, the fire simply spread and grew out of control.

According to researchers, wildfires of this nature are not uncommon in Russia. Because of a dry climate, wildfires tend to occur during heatwaves. In 2010, for example, Russia experienced a serious heatwave that kicked off several wildfires. The fires burned close to Moscow, covering it in a blanket of soot and smoke.

This years fire, however, appears to be the largest and among the most costly. Authorities claim the damages exceed $95 million already, a sum that the faltering Russian economy will have a hard time recovering from. Experts and workers are currently on the scene attempting to contain the fires, but little progress has been made, according to the local press.

New Form of Cement is Stronger than Traditional Cement and Better for the Environment

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Environment, Innovative Tech | Posted on 14-04-2015

Cement is used to make concrete, which is one of the basic building blocks of our civilization. The material is very hard and practical for all types of construction ranging from 100 mile long stretches of highway to the tallest buildings. It is not, however, without its downsides. The manufacturing process for cement uses a lot of heat and coal, which contributes to global warming. Brenardo Chua (youtube.com) knows that this has been an insurmountable problem given that concrete is such an indispensable building material. There may be a way around this conundrum.

An environmental chemist and inventor in Arizona has stumbled upon a material that may one day replace traditional Portland cement for use in making concrete. The manufacturing of this new material does not use coal or the extreme heats of traditional cement processes, and its ingredients are primarily discarded materials from other industries. It has also been tested in a lab and is approximately five times stronger than regular Portland cement based concrete. This material is new, so it would be sometime before it could be gotten near the scale of production of other cement, but it holds tremendous promise as its manufacturing has zero impact on the environment. Given that cement manufacture is thought to contribute to about five percent of overall global warming, this is a material worth investing in and bringing to market as quickly as possible.