It is almost universally agreed upon that human induced climate change is extremely damaging. There are species that are struggling to cope with changes in their habitats, the usual evolutionary process simply isn't being given enough time to compensate. The weather is growing more extreme, with severe floods and storms playing a larger part in the global climate. Coastal cities are all at risk of being eaten up by the ocean.
This passive geoengineering has been taking place for many years, as industry is the main polluter of our planet. Along with combustion engines, coal powered steam engines, and agriculture, the activities of human beings are having dramatic consequences at an ever increasing rate. As land is changed for human purposes and the atmosphere is polluted with our waste, the natural planet is suffering.
One idea has been to actively use geoengineering to patch up the mistakes. Cloud seeding, for example, is an idea that has been kicking around for several decades. A plan was to use white clouds to reflect sunlight back into space. Seeded by salt crystals, the cloud could be long lived and substantial in size. This would reduce the amount of solar radiation meeting the ground. Thought to help reduce the temperature, some argue that it will not be effective.
What ever we decide to do, geoengineering is beginning to look more and more like the only real option. Unless the big polluters suddenly shut up shop and use some of their fortune to clear up the mess they've made, the climate is only going to be more stretched each year. There is a warning on the packaging however, as a new study released today in Nature Ecology and Evolution professes, if we were to mess it up then the whole world could fall apart around us.
So how do we react to this news? If you're not already glum about the environment then you really need to be headed that way, and also maybe this is the kick up the bum we need to hear to make us start really thinking about how we use energy and dispose of our waste. Business solutions like Arrow Direct who recycle computers and tablets for cheap resale are making good way, how do you do your bit for the planet?
IT might be a little too cold for a long walk out in nature this weekend, for many of us an ice cold nose tip and numb feet are too much like hard work. Like many of us, you probably turn to the various forms of electronic entertainment that adorns the home. Fair enough, that's what it's there for.
There is something to be said though, for making use of our time to explore and do things that possibly aren't catered for by the major television networks. Something fascinating and well worth your time is a fantastic video made by NASA.
Now from the cosy comfort of a centrally heated living room, we can delve into the depths of the cosmos in fabulous 3D detail. With a computer generated journey through the Orion Nebula, made precise by years of telescope observations, you can now see the star nursery up close and in spectacular detail.
Hailing from the part of the sky where we see the constellation of Orion the Hunter, the nebula is actually a giant cloud of interstellar gas. From this gas, stars are being created by the forces of gravity. We can see these star-births in all their stages of development thanks to the varying times of their beginning. There are enough birthing stars in the sky to draw a really detailed picture of the process. The same can be said of dying stars.
So why not take a trip around the galaxy, and see for yourself what is out there. The Orion Nebula video is likely the first of many that make use of the great new technology that allows us to render incredibly rich and detailed, true to life maps.
Rowan Blair Colver for Alternative Fruit
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