Another habitat which stores vast amounts of carbon needs to be added to our list: Fjords

While Fjords are not particular common, and account for just 0.1% of the ocean surface area, they store 11-12% of the oceans carbon. Put differently, there are thought to be roughly 18 million tons of carbon stored in fjords around the world. To put it in perspective, that is a similar area to a speck of zest compared to the whole orange.

Norwegian fjord photo by Bob Vonderau 
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Could fossil fuels be pushed out of electricity generation by 2035 simply by market forces?

A report from Carbon Tracker (a London based non-profit) points out that Solar and wind have the potential of creating thousands of Petawatt hours of electricity a year, while current electricity demands stand at just 27PWh.

More crazy still is the space that it would take to get all our electricity from Solar. It would take 450,000 square km, which sounds like an insane amount of land. However, this is just 0.3% of land and significantly less than the land currently given over to the Fossil fuel industry. Given that much of our energy needs will come from wind, this is likely to be significantly lower. Another analysis suggests just 0.2% of land for solar, with 0.5% covered in wind turbines.

End of Oil Age? might we as a society end the need for oil within the next few decades? Photo credit Alexey
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Fusion breakthrough!

I wrote (rather poorly) back in October about fusion and its potential positives. In the middle of December, we had a breakthrough of incredible proportions.

For the first time, it took less energy to start fusion and sustain it, than was released in the reaction. This is obviously essential, as if it takes more energy to get the reaction to take place, than is generated you are using electricity not generating it.

Could this be the future of all energy creation?
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Kenyan boy of 4 somehow survives for 6 days on the edge of the Tsavo east national park -where hyenas and jackals roam

The boy wandered 11 miles from his home through wilderness that surrounds the national park. Tsavo east is an incredibly important reserve, and together with Tsavo west, together protect one of the biggest single ecosystems of east Africa.

This is what Tsavo and the surrounding area looks like. As with many reserves they have a relatively soft edge. Animals such as Elephants are intelligent enough to know when they are relatively safe in the reserve, but many animals may have to roam outside for water or food.
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Easyjet has switched its green aviation focus from electric planes to hydrogen (though it is not giving up on battery planes)

Easyjet has switched its green aviation plans from electric to hydrogen. The aim is now to be flying a 200 person plane by 2035 on hydrogen. Previously, they were working with wright electric on a battery electric plane by 2030.

Currently, aviation emits roughly 2.5% of carbon emissions, and when taking into account non carbon effects, it accounts for roughly 3.5% of human global warming effects.

They have hastened to add, that this does not mean that they are giving up on battery electric, but that they wish to have multiple options. It is also recognized, that at least in the short-term, that while battery electric might be able to replace 80% of easyjets flight paths, the rest are to far for battery electric, unless power density takes a bigger leap forwards than currently expected.

In the meantime, inefficient aircraft are gradually being replaced. Of course this is good both for the environment and the company, as an inefficient plane uses more fuel to fly.

Hertz has found that electric cars cost 50-60% less money to maintain

With huge savings on electric car maintenance, Hertz has just put in a similar size order (to that for tesla) to GM. This will bring their worldwide number up to over quarter of a million electric cars to rent.

Could hertz become an electric car rental only

It is true that Hertz owns 550,000 electric vehicles around the world, so this move will bring them closer to about 50% of their cars.

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Biden expected to sign into law new big cat ownership rules, which will curb or end private ownership

It is thought that there is currently about 10,000 big cats in private ownership, often in poor conditions and of no conservation benefit. While as much as 5000 are tigers (more than the 3900 estimated to remain in the wild across all subspecies, and some estimates put the number of tigers as high as 8000) there are also lions jaguars and leopards amongst other species.

This is not the right way to treat an animal like a tiger.

Importantly, however well-meaning the owners are, the very existence of this pet trade means that any big cat within easy reach of humans becomes a target. This week the bill: big cat public safety act, passed through the house of representatives. Currently 30 states allow tiger ownership, and a license is just $30. Also, as breeders in the USA have generally mixed up all the subspecies, these tigers do not create a back-stop for the wild population, as these hybrid tigers are unlikely to still have the genetic ability to cope in the extreme heat/cold/desert/flooded area that they used to call home.

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Rare good news from USA. Manchin tried to attach energy bill to appropriations legislation: failed

In the USA, much to the frustration of many politicians, it is possible to attach legislation to another bill, even when there is nothing that links the two. In this case Jo Minchin’s legislation would have deregulated and changed permitting reforms for fossil fuel projects, and were supposed to be attached to a must pass defence bill. This ability to attach irrelevant legislation must be ended.

In other words, had he been allowed to do it, the bill would have had to be passed, as the defence part was required.

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Chimpanzees and gorillas search each other out – “friends with benefits”

Recent studies have shown that it his highly beneficial to both species when these cross species friendships are made. Indeed, it is not merely a question of chance encounters, instead each species will actively search out the other.

Benefits include protection from predators, increased social skills and finding fruiting trees.

While chimpanzees and gorillas can occasionally be seen feeding together, and captive animals can often have close relationships, recent research suggests that at least in some forests this is a common behaviour, and both species recognize its benefits
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The worlds 3 most destructive industries are fossil fuels, farming and fisheries, yet all three are protected by (and subsidized) by governments

Unfortunately these 3 activities appear to be most responsible for collapse or incredible pressure on ecosystems across the globe.

Both fossil fuel extraction and farming have required huge areas to be deforested
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