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Environment

China's Experimental Fast Reactor Plugs Into the National Power Grid

The China Experimental Fast Reactor, or CEFR for short, has begun pumping power into China's national electric grid. By greatly increasing fuel efficiency and minimizing the discharge of long-lasting toxic waste, the CEFR pioneers the new direction nuclear power plants must take in a world where nuclear power is coming under increasing scrutiny.

Synthetic Bear Bile Compound Could Help Heart Attack Victims

Ancient Chinese secret? Exciting new research results announced by London's Imperial College indicate a compound found in bear bile could effectively treat abnormal heart rhythm in patients recovering from heart attacks.

Japanese Advertisers Save Electricity & Impress Consumers with 'Powerless Ads'

“Longer, Lower, Wider”, “New & Improved”, “Supersize It!”... in the world of advertising, bigger has always been better. Not any more, as the new Japanese trend towards conservation and frugality changes the country's marketing culture.

Cool Kids: Environmental Artists Put 193 Baby Cribs on Himalayan Ice

A very 'cool' environmental awareness art project at the foot of a fast-retreating glacier in the Himalayas involved nearly 200 baby cribs emblazoned with the flags of all the world's nations.

Solar Power Blossoming In Japan's Northeast Thanks to PayPal Founder's Donation

A new solar power plant financed by a donation arranged by PayPal founder Elon Musk will bring safe, renewable electricity and hope for the future to a tsunami-ravaged town in northeastern Japan.

Radioactive Water Decontamination Improved by NIMS Scientists

Researchers at Japan's NIMS (National Institute for Materials Science)  have discovered a new nanoscale silica material which is highly effective in removing radioactive strontium and radioiodine from contaminated water.

A Computer That Grows On You - Literally

It's hot, and food is getting more expensive. The solution? Buy a new computer, of course! Designer Omer Deutsch merges the fields of technology with biology, creating Seconday Growth, a computer that uses water to cool itself down while also providing an innovative way to increase your yield of fresh garden vegetables or decorative ivy. Perhaps a flowering wisteria would be nice?

Solar Cookers Save Power in Lhasa, Tibet's 'Solar City'

Cheap and effective solar power is hot, especially in Lhasa, Tibet, where clear air and up to 3,000 hours of sunlight annually conspire to create the perfect environment for homegrown solar cookers and water purifiers.

Shared Island between China and Russia to Become Eco-Tourist Zone

The recent agreement between China and Russia officially demarcating their 2,670-mile (4,300 km) long shared border was highlighted by an environmentally-friendly bonus: the disputed island of Heixiazi will now be shared by the two neighboring nations and jointly developed as an eco-tourism travel destination.

Honey I'm Home! Beekeeper Battle is the Calm Before the Swarm

The thrill of victory, the sting of defeat? In one of the more unusual endurance contests out there, a pair of Chinese beekeepers competed to see who could carry the heaviest load of live bees.

Geothermal Power Gets Hot as Japan's Nuclear Plants are No Longer Cool

Old & busted: Japan's nuclear plants. New hotness: geothermal power plants! Proponents of sustainable, non-polluting geothermal energy see an opportunity to grab their place in the sun as Japan deals with fallout (so to speak) from the nuclear crisis centered on the Fukushima Daiiichi Nuclear Power Plant.

China's 'Bigfoot' Leaves Big Footprints in Chinese Cornfield

Bigfoot, Sasquatch, Yeti... and now, the Shennongjia Wildman? Said to inhabit a mountainous, heavily forested area in central China, this legendary red-haired creature has once again made the news by leaving what appear to be footprints in a Chinese farmer's field.

Pacific Ocean Mud Holds a Wealth of Suddenly Not-So-Rare Earth Minerals

If the recent discovery of vast deposits of rare earth minerals on the floor of the Pacific Ocean pans out, the use of the word “rare” to describe these essential high-tech elements may prove to be the mother of all misnomers.

New Radiation Fluorescent Plastic Made From Plastic Soft Drink Bottles

A new type of radiation fluorescent plastic created by a Japanese research team from treated PET plastic soft drink bottles could lead to the manufacture of cheap, effective, visible dosimeters in the event of a nuclear accident.

Super Combo Ramen Fork Spork Keeps Your Noodles Soupy

This cool designer ramen “spork” allows slurpers to gulp their noodles with a spoonful of soup on the side. Besides dispensing with wasteful disposable chopsticks, the souped-up spork adds a dash of artistic taste to any bowl of delicious hot ramen!