Biofuels Are Getting a Second Look—and Some Tough Questions

Biofuels Are Getting a Second Look—and Some Tough Questions

The RFS was supposed to reduce reliance on fuel imports and lessen the environmental impact of the transportation sector, but when it was introduced some scientists warned that it might end up increasing overall emissions.

Biden Invokes the Defense Production Act to Fix the Lithium Shortage

Biden Invokes the Defense Production Act to Fix the Lithium Shortage

On Thursday, the Biden Administration said it would invoke the Defense Production Act in a bid to ensure that lithium supply comes from the US—along with other important battery minerals, like graphite, nickel, cobalt, and manganese.

It’s a Perfect Time for EVs. It’s a Terrible Time for EVs

It’s a Perfect Time for EVs. It’s a Terrible Time for EVs

Pandemic supply chain woes, production crunches, and congressional waffling about the future of electric subsidies have crashed into new challenges tied to the economic sanctions of Russia .Meanwhile, the nations that control global oil and gas supplies hadn’t yet ramped up the production they cut during the depths of the pandemic.

For Insect Farming to Work, Scientists Need to Build a Better Bug

For Insect Farming to Work, Scientists Need to Build a Better Bug

Antoine Hubert, CEO of the French insect-farming startup Ÿnsect, says that the ground mealworms he sells to pet food firms makes up more than 50 percent of his company’s revenue.

Four tales of love in the wild, from peacock spiders to pufferfish.

Four tales of love in the wild, from peacock spiders to pufferfish.

© Martijn Klijnstra / Wikimedia Commons Somewhere in the ocean off the coast of Japan, lives a little pufferfish no longer than 120 centimeters producing fantastical geometric circular designs to attract a mate.Unfortunately for males, female peacock spiders only mate once in their lives.

Can ‘Green’ Ammonia Be a Climate Fix?

Can ‘Green’ Ammonia Be a Climate Fix?

The wind powers a chemical plant that makes ammonia, which can not only be spread as fertilizer under the turbines, but also fuels an experimental tractor, stores energy for a non-windy day, and—soon—will heat the barns that dry their grains.

This Recyclable Boat Is Made From Wool

This Recyclable Boat Is Made From Wool

Changing tastes and the popularity of man-made fibers means there’s a surfeit of strong wool in New Zealand—an estimated 1 million tons is stored waiting for the prices to improve—but 26-year-old inventor Logan Williams, and his company Shear Edge, is hoping to make the most of this increasingly ignored material by chopping it up and using it to make boats, knives, fencing, and just about anything that’s currently made using plastic.

Ultra-Long Battery Life Is Coming … Eventually

Ultra-Long Battery Life Is Coming … Eventually

If there was any product revealed at CES last week that pushed battery life claims to a whole new level—and raised some eyebrows too—it was HyperX’s pair of 300-hour headphones.Srinivasan, like many other technologists these days, is optimistic that relatively new developments in silicon-anode technology will improve battery life.

The World Was Cooler in 2021 Than 2020. That’s Not Good News

The World Was Cooler in 2021 Than 2020. That’s Not Good News

Today NASA and NOAA dropped their annual analysis of global temperatures: Last year was tied with 2018 as the sixth-hottest ever, but cooler than 2020.The 2021 temperature drop “may be possibly due to a resumption of activity that produces aerosols in the atmosphere,” Schmidt said.

Can Synthetic Palm Oil Help Save the World’s Tropical Forests?

Can Synthetic Palm Oil Help Save the World’s Tropical Forests?

Demand is expected to more than double by 2050.But with advances in bioengineering and increasing concerns about sustainability, a number of companies like Xylome have developed microbial oils they say could offer an alternative to palm oil while avoiding its most destructive impacts.

All That Glitters Isn't Litter

All That Glitters Isn't Litter

Just adding five milligrams will change the color of an entire kilogram of cellulose, making the crystals refract shorter wavelengths, like greens and blues.The team also figured out how to control the production process carefully so that they can now create meter-long sheets of glitter using a roll-to-roll machine, a common piece of industrial equipment.

Carbon-Capturing Sunglasses Offer a View of Fashion's Future

Carbon-Capturing Sunglasses Offer a View of Fashion's Future

Nike, which says 70 percent of its emissions are wrapped up in its materials, is one of many large fashion brands that have committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by at least 30 percent by 2030.Herrema said the idea that would eventually lead to AirCarbon came to him while he was at Princeton in the early 2000s.

Making Beetles Pee Can Protect Your Garden

Making Beetles Pee Can Protect Your Garden

Give these research teams a bit more time and between pee and fear, your garden could have new tools to protect it against insect pests – without the use of indiscriminate pesticides.

Microsoft’s Surface Duo 2 Is a Lovable Weirdo

Microsoft’s Surface Duo 2 Is a Lovable Weirdo

Two Octobers ago, Microsoft revealed its long-in-the-works dual-screened device, named the Surface Duo .When the Surface Duo 2 ships it will be running on Android 11 , and like the last time around, some key Microsoft Office apps have been optimized for the split screens.

Watch Apple’s iPhone 13 Launch Event Right Here

Watch Apple’s iPhone 13 Launch Event Right Here

Apple is hosting its annual fall hardware event this morning, and, as usual, the entire tech industry (and anyone who’s been thinking it’s time to buy a new iPhone) will be watching—online—to get a sense of how Apple is both responding to and advancing trends in consumer tech.

California Passes Warehouse Worker Bill, Taking Aim at Amazon

California Passes Warehouse Worker Bill, Taking Aim at Amazon

Not long after, Barrera was written up by a different manager for too much “Time Off Task,” Amazon’s system for tracking employee productivity.More than five minutes without scanning a barcode set the TOT clock ticking, regardless of whether that time was spent using the bathroom, wiping down a workstation, goofing off, or simply taking a breather.

FAO - News Article: FAO launches practical tools to encourage soil organic carbon sequestration

FAO - News Article: FAO launches practical tools to encourage soil organic carbon sequestration

Managing soils in a sustainable way and rehabilitating degraded agricultural soils and grasslands can therefore help mitigate the impacts of the climate crisis and improve food security and nutrition.

I Want My Daughter to Live in a Better Metaverse

I Want My Daughter to Live in a Better Metaverse

While I appreciate the ability to shield my teenager from unseemly content, I also understand the importance of having meaningful conversations about why certain words and actions can harm others.It’s not difficult to imagine nefarious actors injecting extremist or toxic content into metaverse experiences directly.

BMW’s Virtual Factory Uses AI to Hone the Assembly Line

BMW’s Virtual Factory Uses AI to Hone the Assembly Line

Grüeneisl says machine-learning algorithms can simulate robots performing complex maneuvers to find the most efficient process.

Game of Thrones on Broadway? This, I Don't Need

Game of Thrones on Broadway? This, I Don't Need

The Thrones play isn’t scheduled to hit the stage until 2023, but even then there will likely still be a lot of pent-up demand following the Broadway's dark year and half.

FAO - News Article: Disasters take heavy toll on agri-food systems as new threats emerge

FAO - News Article: Disasters take heavy toll on agri-food systems as new threats emerge

Thus, between 2008 and 2018, the impacts of disasters cost the agricultural sectors of developing country economies over $108 billion in damaged or lost crop and livestock production.Over 34 percent of crop and livestock production loss in LDCs and LMICs is traced to drought, costing the sector $37 billion overall.

Indoor-Grown Weed Is Spewing Carbon Into the Atmosphere

Indoor-Grown Weed Is Spewing Carbon Into the Atmosphere

Based on their calculations, cannabis production results in over 2,000 kilograms of carbon dioxide emitted for every kilogram of product (defined as dried flowers), and its legalization has had a measurable effect on Colorado's greenhouse gas output.

FAO - News Article: Food systems account for more than one third of global greenhouse gas emissions

FAO - News Article: Food systems account for more than one third of global greenhouse gas emissions

The research highlights how global food systems are becoming more energy intensive, reflecting trends in the retail, packaging, transport and processing sectors, whose emissions are growing rapidly in some developing countries.

Email and Slack Have Locked Us in a Productivity Paradox

Email and Slack Have Locked Us in a Productivity Paradox

In 1991, an article in The New York Times quoted an economist who pointed out that although companies continue to spend heavily on technology, “white-collar productivity has stagnated.” He concludes: “No longer are chief executives confident that throwing computers at their office staffs will result in greater efficiency.”.

Jim Ryan: There Will Be ‘a Completely New VR Format for PS5’

Jim Ryan: There Will Be ‘a Completely New VR Format for PS5’

If we’re honest, it’s a lot more than we’d prepared for.Since half the known universe would be out for blood if we didn’t ask the obvious question, we took a little detour of our own to start things off.So it’s really nice that we’re able to bring in people from outside.

FAO - News Article: FAO welcomes €40 million from Germany to help farmers withstand shocks like COVID-19 and extreme climate events

FAO - News Article: FAO welcomes €40 million from Germany to help farmers withstand shocks like COVID-19 and extreme climate events

The funding from Germany's KfW development bank will support FAO's efforts to build the resilience of resource-poor producers, pastoralists and fishers in three of the world's most food insecure countries - the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Somalia and Yemen, work undertaken in partnership with other UN agencies.

Optimizely’s Founder Wants to Augment Your Memories

Optimizely’s Founder Wants to Augment Your Memories

Siroker says that he’s very privacy-conscious, and all of those digitally stored memories will go into “your own personal vault.” He’s also thinking a lot about how to make sure the people you interact with don’t feel you’re stealing their words.Siroker says he does not want people to alter records in a way that supports nefarious uses like deepfakes.

The Hollywood Tech Tricks Getting Film Crews Back on Set

The Hollywood Tech Tricks Getting Film Crews Back on Set

Today, though, unveiled a new service: Camera to Cloud, which allows multiple people to start working on a shot the second the director films it, greatly reducing the number of people on set and increasing the number who can contribute from a safe, socially (very) distant place.

A Silicon Chip Shortage Is Causing Big Issues for Automakers

A Silicon Chip Shortage Is Causing Big Issues for Automakers

And despite its size, the auto industry is actually a bit of a minnow when it comes to buying chips, accounting for roughly a tenth of global semiconductor fab output.

FAO - News Article: Innovation to counter food supply-chain disruptions and spur recovery

FAO - News Article: Innovation to counter food supply-chain disruptions and spur recovery

19 January, 2021, Rome/Berlin - Innovative solutions in agri-food systems helped households and countries contain disruptions in food supply chains during the COVID-19 pandemic, and more will be required to "build back better and build back greener", FAO's Director-General QU Dongyu said today.