Leaked: UK £7 billion export credit for fossil fuel industry violates ‘clean energy’ pledge

Between 2011 and 2016 the UK’s export finance agency UKEF provided £109m to underwrite exports of equipment to coal mines in Russia, writes Lawrence Carter – despite the agency’s commitment not to support ‘investment in dirty fossil-fuel energy production’. And that’s just a fraction of the £6.9 billion UKEF has lavished on the corrupt, polluting sector since 2000, while it was meant to be backing the clean energy technologies of the future.
Environment news & analysis, climate change reports –
The Ecologist

From grass to grassoline

Researchers at Ghent University have developed a process that turns grass into fuel.

Scientists at the Centre for Microbial Ecology and Technology (CMET), Ghent University have developed a way to turn grass into biofuel. Will we soon drive on ‘grassoline’?

“Until now, grass has mainly served as feed for animals. We can get more out of grass: due to its vast abundance, it is an attractive source to produce organics such as aviation fuel” , scientist Way Cern Khor tells us. During his PhD research at Ghent University, Belgium, he investigated methods that disintegrate and bioconvert grass until it can be used as a fuel.

ENN: Top Stories

Tel Aviv’s trash is being turned into fuel

TEL AVIV (Reuters) – Residents of Tel Aviv can start feeling a little less guilty about the amount of garbage they throw away.


Reuters: Environment

New Caribbean Dive Site: A Ship That Survived Pearl Harbor

A project involving Sir Richard Branson will turn an old fuel barge into an underwater art display and marine habitat in the British Virgin Islands.
Oceans

Study Targets Warm Water Rings That Fuel Hurricane Intensification In The Caribbean Sea

Ocean Leadership ~

A new study used aircraft ocean instruments to understand the structure of warm water eddies. (Credit: © jovannig / Fotolia)

(Click to enlarge) A new study used aircraft ocean instruments to understand the structure of warm water eddies. (Credit: © jovannig / Fotolia)

Last year’s devastating category-5 hurricane — Matthew — may be one of many past examples of a tropical storm fueled by massive rings of warm water that exist in the upper reaches of the Caribbean Sea.

(From Science Daily)– In a study conducted in the region two years prior to when Matthew’s trekked across the Caribbean Sea, the research team in the Upper Ocean Dynamics Laboratory at the University of Miami (UM) Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science deployed 55 aircraft ocean instruments from the National Oceanographic Atmospheric Administration’s WP-3D aircraft. The purpose of the scientific mission was to measure ocean temperature, salinity, and currents to understand the structure of these warm-water eddies.

The science team obtained vital information about the physical characteristics within one large warm-water eddy, which likely originated from the North Brazil Current, and analyzed its potential influence on sub-surface ocean conditions during the passage of tropical cyclones.

When analyzing the data, they found a barrier layer, an upper ocean feature created by the Amazon-Orinoco freshwater river outflow, that makes mixing in the upper ocean waters less efficient during wind events. This feature, and the fact that warm ocean eddies are known to assist in the intensification of hurricanes due to deep warm thermal layers, lead the researchers to theorize that the barrier layer within a warm ocean eddy may result in an even more favorable upper ocean environment for hurricane intensification.

“Our study is important because tropical cyclone intensity forecasts for several past hurricanes over the Caribbean Sea have under-predicted rapid intensification events over warm oceanic features,” said Johna Rudzin, a PhD student at the UM Rosenstiel School and lead author of the study.

Tropical storms receive energy from their surrounding ocean waters. As a storm moves across the water, it may interact with rings of warm water known as eddies. As the storm moves forward over these eddies, the warm ocean waters below help fuel the storm’s intensity through enhanced and sustained heat and moisture fluxes.

Similar warm ocean eddies exist in the Gulf of Mexico, a result of their separation from the warm-water Loop Current, are also of interest to the research team involved in this study.

Last year, Hurricane Matthew rapidly intensified from a tropical storm to hurricane status as it moved over the Caribbean Sea in the location where a warm ocean eddy exists, and in close proximity to where these measurements were taken for this study two years prior. Matthew continued to intensify to a category-5 storm and into one of the strongest in Atlantic basin history, which made landfall and devastated portions of Haiti, Cuba, and the eastern United States.

Read the full article here: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/02/170223092409.htm

The post Study Targets Warm Water Rings That Fuel Hurricane Intensification In The Caribbean Sea appeared on Consortium for Ocean Leadership.


Consortium for Ocean Leadership

Light-Driven Reaction Converts Carbon Dioxide into Fuel

Duke University researchers have developed tiny nanoparticles that help convert carbon dioxide into methane using only ultraviolet light as an energy source.

Having found a catalyst that can do this important chemistry using ultraviolet light, the team now hopes to develop a version that would run on natural sunlight, a potential boon to alternative energy.

ENN: Top Stories

Why did the US need toxic uranium munitions to destroy fuel tankers in Syria?

Depleted uranium (DU) munitions may not be regulated but their severe long term health impacts mean they should be, writes Doug Weir. So why did ‘Coalition’ forces fire 5,265 armour-piercing DU rounds on IS fuel convoys in Syria? When non-DU munitions would have done the job just as well? Just because they knew they would never be held to account? All the more reason to act now!
Environment news & analysis, climate change reports –
The Ecologist

Honda, GM to jointly produce fuel cell power systems in U.S. from 2020

TOKYO/DETROIT (Reuters) – Honda Motor Co Ltd and General Motors Co (GM) will jointly produce pollution-free hydrogen fuel cell power systems in the United States from around 2020, the companies said Monday, despite President Donald Trump’s promises to dismantle U.S. environmental regulations intended to spur green car demand.


Reuters: Environment

Tepco spots possible nuclear fuel debris at Japan’s Fukushima reactor

TOKYO (Reuters) – Tokyo Electric Power (Tepco), the operator of Japan’s wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant, said on Monday it may have found nuclear fuel debris below the damaged No. 2 reactor, one of three that had meltdowns in the 2011 disaster.


Reuters: Environment

World's biggest tropical carbon sink found in Congo rainforest

A 145,000 sq km area of peatland swamp forest has been discovered in the Congo Basin, writes Tim Radford, and it holds a record 30 Gt of carbon, equivalent to 20 years of US fossil fuel emissions. Now the race is on to protect it from damaging development that would emit that carbon over coming decades.

ENN: Top Stories