Researchers discover wood-based fire-resistant material

Parallel fibres in beech wood Photo: DR KEITH WHEELER/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Researchers at the University of Maryland have developed a wood-based material that outperforms almost all other heat insulators and costs about $7 a metre to manufacture.

“Nanowood” is created by stripping away all the filler material in wood, leaving just the fibres. This is achieved by exposing wood to sodium hydroxide, sodium sulphite and hydrogen peroxide, all inexpensive chemicals. This strips out the cell walls, leaving the wood’s natural, parallel fibres, which create the high-performance insulation. A square metre of nanowood would cost about $7 to make.

Because is is made from wood – a renewable resource – nanowood is environmentally sustainable too.

Journal reference: Science Advances, DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aar3724

Positive Earth news: electric supercar does 250mph

0-60 in 1.85 seconds. No one’s gonna be rude about electric cars again

You won’t be able to kick sand in it’s face. It will be in a neighbouring country before you’ve even filled your bucket with sand.

Not to mention a top speed of 258 mph – no idea what I’d do with that speed though. I hate to think. Other interesting features are four motors, a 400-mile range and an 80% charge time of less than 30 minutes.  Continue reading “Positive Earth news: electric supercar does 250mph”

L’Oréal aims to be carbon neutral by 2019

Great to hear some positive environmental news from the cosmetics industry. L’Oréal USA has announced it plans to achieve carbon neutrality in 2019 for all 21 of its U.S. manufacturing and distribution facilities by using renewable natural gas (RNG). The company currently has 17 renewable energy installations across the country, including large on-site solar arrays in Arkansas Kentucky and wind turbines in Texas.

To achieve this L’Oréal USA is adding to its diversified energy portfolio with RNG purchased from a new processing facility in Kentucky. The company hopes a renewable energy production solution utilizing landfill gas (LFG) in Ashland that will eliminate the carbon equivalent of 1.8 million gallons of gasoline a year.

It’s proven. Guilt doesn’t work! 

“Pride, Not Guilt Biggest Driver of Pro-Environmental Actions”

Just as I suspected. Finally the researchers have caught up with me. People respond better to pride than guilt. Guilt only works when you know your headmaster/ parents/ police force is standing behind the door keeping an eye on you.

Local Brighton cafe leads the way

Starting at home: local Brighton library cafe Temptation now offers its customers a free coffee if they buy an organic bamboo fibre cup, and double loyalty stamps if they bring their own cup.

Manager Nathan Bayliss finds customers want to change their habits.  Continue reading “It’s proven. Guilt doesn’t work! “