Category: pollution

More than 95% of world’s population breathe da…

More than 95% of world’s population breathe dangerous air, major study finds: undefined

‘Big issue’: Turnbull government’s energy plan…

‘Big issue’: Turnbull government’s energy plan may curb state ambition: undefined

Scientists accidentally create mutant enzyme t…

Scientists accidentally create mutant enzyme that eats plastic bottles

Scientists have created a mutant enzyme that breaks down plastic drinks bottles – by accident. The breakthrough could help solve the global plastic pollution crisis by enabling for the first time the full recycling of bottles.

The new research was spurred by the discovery in 2016 of the first bacterium that had naturally evolved to eat plastic, at a waste dump in Japan. Scientists have now revealed the detailed structure of the crucial enzyme produced by the bug.

The international team then tweaked the enzyme to see how it had evolved, but tests showed they had inadvertently made the molecule even better at breaking down the PET (polyethylene terephthalate) plastic used for soft drink bottles. “What actually turned out was we improved the enzyme, which was a bit of a shock,” said Prof John McGeehan, at the University of Portsmouth, UK, who led the research. “It’s great and a real finding.”

‘Plastic is literally everywhere’: the epidemi…

‘Plastic is literally everywhere’: the epidemic attacking Australia’s oceans: undefined

Recycling hope for plastic-hungry enzyme

Recycling hope for plastic-hungry enzyme: undefined

New Zealand puts an end to new permits for exp…

New Zealand puts an end to new permits for exploration of deep-sea oil and gas reserves: undefined

Canada Moving to Exempt Majority of New Oilsan…

Canada Moving to Exempt Majority of New Oilsands Projects From Federal Assessments:

allthecanadianpolitics:

After more than a year of public hearings, the federal government unveiled its new and improved environmental assessment legislation in February 2018 with much ado.

But the new rules — designed to restore public trust in Canada’s process for reviewing major projects — didn’t contain any details on what kinds of projects would trigger a review under the new legislation.

Environment Minister Catherine McKenna skirted the issue, saying her ministry was still evaluating what kinds of activities would show up on a yet-to-be-released “project list” that was pending further consultation with Canadians.

But when pressed on the issue, McKenna told reporters she didn’t believe oilsands projects developed via in-situ methods should be included. McKenna reasoned that because Alberta already has a hard cap on emissions, future oilsands projects would be exempt from federal environmental review.

The implications of excluding new oilsands projects because of a provincial emissions cap (which is controversial) weren’t lost on Adam Scott, senior advisor with Oil Change International.

“It’s just appalling,” Scott told DeSmog Canada in an interview. “There’s no other way to say it.”

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‘Harder and riskier’: Carbon removal needed if…

‘Harder and riskier’: Carbon removal needed if Paris goals don’t rise:

“Each tonne of CO2 we don’t emit, we don’t have to remove from the atmosphere afterwards in an expensive and strenuous way,”

China ‘environment census’ reveals 50% rise in…

China ‘environment census’ reveals 50% rise in pollution sources: undefined

The plastics crisis is more urgent than you kn…

The plastics crisis is more urgent than you know. Recycling bottles won’t fix it | John Vidal:

Plastics : 

“In one study, 95% of all adults tested in the US had known carcinogenic chemical bisphenol A in their urine. In another, 83% of samples of tap water tested in seven countries were found to contain plastic microfibres. A study published last week revealed plastics contamination in more than 90% of bottled-water samples, which were from 11 different brands. And earlier this year the River Tame in Manchester was found to have 517,000 particles of plastic per cubic metre of sediment – that’s nearly double the highest concentration ever measured across the world.”