Archives par mot-clé : Pollution

Old mining techniques make a new way to recycle lithium batteries

by Michigan Technological University, August 2, 2018 in ScienceDaily

Using 100-year-old minerals processing methods, chemical engineering students have found a solution to a looming 21st-century problem: how to economically recycle lithium ion batteries.

Pan, an assistant professor of chemical engineering at Michigan Technological University, earned his graduate degrees in mining engineering. It was his idea to adapt 20th century mining technology to recycle lithium ion batteries, from the small ones in cell phones to the multi-kilowatt models that power electric cars. Pan figured the same technologies used to separate metal from ore could be applied to spent batteries. So he gave his students a crash course in basic minerals processing methods and set them loose in the lab.

Determining the bioaccumulation of 9 metals in aquatic invertebrates in mining areas

by University of the Basque Country, July 19, 2018 in ScienceDaily

A study conducted in mining areas in Asturias by the Animal Ecotoxicity and Biodiversity group led by Dr Pilar Rodriguez, through collaboration between the Department of Zoology and Animal Cellular Biology and that of Genetics, Physical Anthropology and Animal Physiology of the UPV/EHU’s Faculty of Science and Technology, and the Limnology Laboratory at the University of Vigo has enabled progress to be made in this field and has proposed the ecological threshold concentration for 7 metals (cadmium, chromium, copper, mercury, nickel, lead and zinc) and two metalloids (arsenic and selenium). The study included a number of non-contaminated localities belonging to the reference network of the Nalón river basin as well as other highly contaminated ones. This is a basin with a long history of mining activities due to the high levels of metals naturally occurring in its rocks.

New Report: Recycling Plastic Is Making Ocean Litter Worse

by GWPF, June 28, 2018

* Most of the plastic waste comes from just a few countries, mostly in Asia and Africa.
* 25% is “leakage” from Asian waste management processes — the rest is waste that has never been collected, but is simply thrown into rivers.
* But European countries ship inject huge quantities of waste into Asian waste management streams, ostensibly for recycling. As much as 20% — millions of tons every year — ends up in the oceans and will continue to do so.
* Since the Chinese banned waste imports at the start of the year, shipments have been diverted to other Asian countries with even weaker environmental controls (Figure 1).
* EU recycling is therefore a major contributor to marine waste and increasing recycling will therefore simply increase marine litter.

Full paper .pdf here

Les métaux sales de l’énergie propre ou la face cachée de transition énergétique …

par Professeur Alain Préat, 9 juin 2008, in ScienceClimatEnergie

Trois révolutions énergétiques depuis à peine plus d’un siècle. Nous sommes entrés dans la troisième révolution énergétique. La première vit le jour avec la machine à vapeur et participa à l’essor du charbon, avec la seconde le moteur thermique dérôna le charbon au profit des hydrocarbures, et la troisième révolution industrielle, en cours, est technologique et basée sur les énergies ‘vertes’ ou énergies intermittentes et l’informatique ou le numérique. Cette problématique vient d’être abordée dans un excellent ouvrage paru en 2018 .

Peut-on dire que cette progression récente suivant ces trois phases majeures de la technologie s’est effectuée dans le sens d’un meilleur respect de l‘état de la Planète. Bien que cela soit le discours officiel, rien n’en est moins sûr. Pourquoi ? Tout simplement par le méconnaissance de tout un chacun à comprendre ou savoir ce qui est réellement utilisé dans les énergies vertes et numériques. L’actuelle ‘transition énergétique’ a bon dos et elle a toutes les vertus, elle est propre, quant aux les hydrocarbures, le charbon, l’uranium et CO(ennemi n° 1) ils ont tous les maux, et sont tous sales. Il n’est pas un jour où cette opposition nous est rappelée…


Oceanic plastic trash conveys disease to coral reefs

by B. Friedlander, January 25, 2018 in CornellChronicle

“Plastics make ideal vessels for colonizing microscopic organisms that could trigger disease if they come into contact with corals,” Lamb said. “Plastic items – commonly made of polypropylene, such as bottle caps and toothbrushes – have been shown to become heavily inhabited by bacteria. This is associated with the globally devastating group of coral diseases known as white syndromes.”

When plastic debris meets coral, the authors say, the likelihood of disease increases from 4 to 89 percent – a 20-fold change. The scientists estimate that about 11.1 billion plastic items are entangled on reefs across the Asia-Pacific region, and that this will likely increase 40 percent over the next seven years.

Pollution Market Gets a Boost in EU With Move to Reduce Glut

by E.  Krukowska and R. Morison, February 26, 2018 in Bloomberg

European Union nations are poised to endorse the biggest overhaul of the market they created more than a decade ago to rein in pollution, a move that may lift prices of power generated from fossil fuels.

The measures, due for final approval in Brussels on Tuesday, impose tougher requirements on thousands of companies to reduce greenhouse gases or pay higher costs for their carbon dioxide emissions. They’re part of a plan to clear up a flaw in the market that left the cost of CO2 permits well below the level needed to stir investments in green energy.

L’ Empire des Métaux Rares

by Edouard Guigue, 13 janvier 2018

Que sont les métaux rares ? Des ressources peu connues mais essentielles au fonctionnement de l’espace mondialisé. Insérées au cœur de tout appareil électronique, sans elles aucune de nos technologies numériques n’existerait. Composant également la plupart de nos technologies vertes (éoliennes, panneaux solaires ou voitures électriques), leurs modes de production laissent toutefois perplexe sur leur capacité à s’établir comme alternatives durables aux énergies fossiles. La pollution ne serait pas réduite mais simplement délocalisée… essentiellement en Chine où 95% des terres rares sont produites. Un chiffre qui par ailleurs devrait nous alarmer sur la situation de dépendance à la Chine dans laquelle le reste du monde  -dont l’Europe- se trouve depuis les années 1980. Guillaume Pitron nous présente une enquête de six ans, dont les résultats sont à retrouver dans son livre La guerre des métaux rares.

A ‘marine motorhome for microbes’: Oceanic plastic trash conveys disease to coral reefs

by Cornell University, January 25, 2018 in ScienceDaily

Plastics make ideal vessels for colonizing microscopic organisms that could trigger disease if they come into contact with corals,” Lamb said. “Plastic items — commonly made of polypropylene, such as bottle caps and toothbrushes — have been shown to become heavily inhabited by bacteria

100 companies to blame for 71% of carbon “pollution”, but world’s worst corporates are Big Government

by JoNova, August 2017

Since 1988, a mere 100 companies have been responsible for 71 percent of the entire world’s industrial greenhouse gas emissions.

This data comes from an inaugural report published by the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), an environmental non-profit. Charting the rapid expansion of the fossil fuel industry in the last 28 years, they have now released some truly staggering numbers on the world’s major carbon polluters.

Plastics Yet Again

by Kip Hansen, July 28, 2017 in WUWT

The New York Times’ article breathlessly reports:

“From the 1950s to today, 8.3 billion metric tons of plastic have been produced, with around half of it made since 2004. And since plastic does not naturally degrade, the billions of tons sitting in landfills, floating in the oceans or piling up on city streets will provide a marker if later civilizations ever want to classify our era. Perhaps they will call this time on Earth the Plastocene Epoch.”

Contamination of the Arctic reflected in microbial metagenomes from the Greenland ice sheet

by A.L. Hauptmann et al., July 11, 2017

Globally emitted contaminants accumulate in the Arctic and are stored in the frozen environments of the cryosphere. The microbial potential to degrade anthropogenic contaminants, such as toxic and persistent polychlorinated biphenyls, was found to be spatially variable and not limited to regions close to human activities.

Plastic pollution in the Antarctic worse than expected

by British Antarctic Survey, June 19, 2017 in ClimateChangeDispatch

The levels of microplastic particles accumulating in the Antarctic are much worse than expected, a team of experts has warned.

The continent is considered to be a pristine wilderness compared to other regions and was thought to be relatively free from plastic pollution. However new findings by scientists from University of Hull and British Antarctic Survey (BAS) have revealed that recorded levels of microplastics are five times higher than you would expect to find from local sources such as research stations and ships