Blog Archives

Zoos of the future break down the enclosure walls

The experience of visiting a zoo is about to change dramatically. The Next Generation Zoo concept is based on how animals use space in the wild, giving them more freedom and better using the resources available to most zoos. Take Philadelphia Zoo, for example. It is a small, city-based institution, which like many zoos has […] … learn more→

Rising temperature, rising food prices

Agriculture as it exists today developed over 11,000 years of rather remarkable climate stability. It has evolved to maximize production within that climate system. Now, suddenly, the climate is changing. With each passing year, the agricultural system is becoming more out of sync with the climate system. In generations past, when there was an extreme […] … learn more→

Bike-sharing programs fit the streets in over 500 cities worldwide

Politicians, lobbyists, and tourists alike can ride bicycles along a specially marked lane between the White House and the U.S. Capitol, part of the 115 miles of bicycle lanes and paths that now crisscross Washington, DC. In Copenhagen, commuters can ride to work following a “green wave” of signal lights timed for bikers. Residents in […] … learn more→

Wind surpasses nuclear in China

Wind has overtaken nuclear as an electricity source in China. In 2012, wind farms generated 2 percent more electricity than nuclear power plants did, a gap that will likely widen dramatically over the next few years as wind surges ahead. Since 2007, nuclear power generation has risen by 10 percent annually, compared with wind’s explosive […] … learn more→

Dust Bowl Revisited

On October 18, 2012, the Associated Press reported that “a massive dust storm swirling reddish-brown clouds over northern Oklahoma triggered a multi-vehicle accident along a major interstate…forcing police to shut down the heavily traveled roadway amid near blackout conditions.” Farmers in the region had recently plowed fields to plant winter wheat. The bare soil—desiccated by […] … learn more→

Throwaway economy headed for junk heap of history

In their book Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things, American architect William McDonough and German chemist Michael Braungart conclude that waste and pollution are to be avoided entirely. “Pollution,” says McDonough, “is a symbol of design failure.” The challenge is to re-evaluate the materials we consume and the way we manufacture products […] … learn more→