From the category archives:

Bamboo & The Environment

Tweet I visited my local county fair last weekend.  Being one of the largest county fairs in the world, it generally offers something to appeal to all types of people, so any individual can expect to be intrigued by some things and perplexed by others.  There may not have been any bamboo retailers yet, but [...]

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Tweet Last month, I wrote about the intersections of the United States’ problems with ongoing drought, the likely future effects of global warming, and the institutional lack of biodiversity in crop production.  Now well into August, drought is still plaguing large portions of the country, which is particularly worrying since a change in the weather [...]

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Tweet More and more companies are cluing into the fact that we need more green and renewable alternatives for consumer goods and manufacturing.  As eco-friendliness becomes better for business and a more widely recognized social responsibility, a lot of existing products are changing to accommodate it. Due to the ease of sourcing and growing it, [...]

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Tweet There has been a growing push for the use of forest biomass as a source of energy production.  Some environmental advocates assume that those efforts would be carbon neutral, job-creating, and an effective way for the United States and Europe to reduce dependence on fossil fuels.  However, a recent study warns that implementing such [...]

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Tweet We have already reported on how bamboo construction can protect homes against earthquake damage.  But that is by no means the only way in which bamboo can help to safeguard against natural disaster.  While harvesting the stalks can lead to its use in making the frames of houses both durable and flexible, merely planting [...]

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Tweet Bamboo art is certainly not a new medium.  As far back as ancient China, the bamboo brush was an essential tool to create the flowing beauty of calligraphy and today, the resilient and sturdy bamboo lends itself easily to big ideas and larger-than-life sculptures. In Seattle, a current piece at the Henry Art Gallery [...]

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Tweet Soon Great Britain will have another famous couple to gawk at.  As Prince William and Duchess Catherine settle into married life, the Edinburgh Zoo in Scotland will welcome a breeding pair of giant pandas from China by the end of this year.  Along with Tian Tian and Yang Guan, the zoo will also be [...]

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Tweet Last month, I reported that emergent processes might make bamboo a viable source of biofuels as we work toward reducing automobile emissions and our dependence on foreign oil.  Now, in addition to providing a potential alternative means for powering our cars, bamboo is being put forward as a possible material in the actual construction [...]

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Tweet Anyone who reads this site regularly should have a sense of the tremendous versatility of bamboo.  It is already used for food, medicine, decorative gardening, the construction of homes and flooring, furniture and other goods, and for clothing textiles.  In time we may also be able to add biofuel to the list of its [...]

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Tweet Now that an East Coast earthquake has actually damaged the historic Washington Monument, we all have reason to be more acutely aware of the potential danger from the kinds of natural disasters that seem comparatively rare in most regions, but that we know from the news can be spectacularly devastating.  Knowing what we do [...]

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Tweet Trader Joe’s has come under fire recently over accusations that the trendy grocery store is habitually wasting food.  The chorus of public outcry from a recent documentary film showing workers dumping large quantities of salvageable food into dumpsters.  I must say, I feel for the big company in this case, not because I would [...]

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Tweet I don’t think anyone doubts that something needs to be done about the national debt.  But it’s a shame that the political establishment seems to be incapable of pursuing a solution that takes a balanced, rational approach, which utilizes both fair tax reform and measured, broad-based spending cuts.  Instead, the less reasonable voices on [...]

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Tweet Did you take your children to a Fourth of July parade yesterday?  According to one recent study, if you did, you’ve increased their odds of turning out to be Republicans later in life.  According to the study’s authors, political scientist David Yanagizawa-Drott and economist Andreas Madestam, attending an Independence Day parade before the age [...]

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Tweet After two weeks of negotiations, the Bonn climate talks ended on Friday and made effectively no progress on efforts to curtail global warming.  Participants in the talks are giving credit to all parties for making progress on various technical issues, but the most prominent and crucially important areas of discussion have come to naught, [...]

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Tweet Over the course of the past decade, cotton production in the United States has decreased substantially.  Consequently, American distributors and retailers are increasingly dependent on foreign crops and cotton prices stand to fluctuate in accordance with the activity of foreign markets, the policies of foreign governments, and the effects of foreign weather and disasters.  [...]

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Tweet It occurred to me last night as I wrestled open a package of razors that surely they weren’t so dangerous that they required a double layer of plastic to keep consumers safe.  (And the cuts on my legs certainly prove that indeed they were not that sharp.)  Thankfully, many companies are way ahead of [...]

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Tweet In April, I discussed an editorial that attempted to downplay the danger of carbon emissions, in part by pointing out that the rate of carbon release to the atmosphere had slowed down in recent years.  I tried to emphasize that a reduction in the rate of increase does not mean that everything’s suddenly okay.  [...]

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Tweet Recent research at North Carolina State University indicates that biodegradable products can actually be bad for the environment because of the release of the greenhouse gas, methane.  The researchers conclude that a reduction in these emissions can be achieved by expanding methane-capture practices at landfills, along with transitioning to use of products that biodegrade [...]

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