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Rescooped by Frédéric Liégeois from Gaia Diary
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Human/Environmental Interactions

The collapse of the Aral Sea ecosystem is (arguably) the worst man-made environmental disaster of the 20th century.  Soviet mismanagement, water-intensive cotton production and population growth have all contributed the overtaxing of water resources in the Aral Sea basin, which has resulted in a the shrinking of the Aral Sea--it has lost more of the sea to an expanding desert than the territories of the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg combined.  The health problems arising from this issues are large for the entire Aral Sea basin, which encompasses 5 Central Asian countries and it has profoundly changed (for the worse) the local climates. 


Via Seth Dixon, Paige Therien, Mariaschnee
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Paige McClatchy's curator insight, October 17, 2013 5:49 PM

I've read about the disaster of the Aral Sea before when I was taking a class on Eurasian history, but being able to visualize it made it even more striking. It was especially striking when, at the end, the man was talking about the great paradox he sees between people who are being threatened with rising ocean levels and then his people who are threatened by the drying of the Aral. It really does show how humans impact the environment, and demonstrates that areas in which people are manual laborers, working resources, health and environmental conditions tend to be worse. 

Al Picozzi's curator insight, October 20, 2013 10:11 AM

This has to be one of the most telling video of an environmental disaster I have even seen.  A whole sea, 26,000 square miles, bigger than the state of West Virginia, is bascially gone due to Soviet mismanagement.  This is an environmental disaster now that the Russians do not have to deal with as it is now located in the independant country of Kazakhstan.  It effects them as well as the new countries that have come to be withthe collapse of the USSR.  Seems Russian dodged this just like Chernobyl.  This is something we need to lean from, on how not to use a natural resource until it literally has dried up.

Paige Therien's curator insight, May 4, 9:24 AM

The Aral Sea, located in Central Asia is a very important water source for the entire region.  Unfortunately, the Soviet Union designated this water sources as one which would provide water to rice and cotton crops, which are both very water-intensive crops.  This has resulted in desertification of the area due to the cyclical shrinking volume of the lake.  Sands and chemicals are now free to blow around, affecting people's health.  This is one of the best examples on earth of environmental exploitation due to a lack of environmental planning.  When the lake dries up, the inhabitants of the surrounding countries will be in huge trouble.

Rescooped by Frédéric Liégeois from Environment & Sustainability
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New labeling system guides people through how to recycle.

New labeling system guides people through how to recycle. | Picto Communication Partner | Scoop.it

Think every piece of food and product packaging that bears the chasing arrows recycling symbol can be tossed in the blue bin? It’s a common misconception.

 

While these items are technically recyclable, they may not be accepted in every recycling program. This can cause confusion and frustration among consumers and may even lead some to skip recycling altogether.

 

To clear up the chasing arrows confusion once and for all, the Sustainable Packaging Coalition — an industry working group dedicated to environmentally friendly packaging — developed its How2Recycle Label, a straightforward label that gives consumers detailed information about the packaging materials and their proper disposal.


Via youthrage
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Rescooped by Frédéric Liégeois from sustainable architecture
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Snøhetta reveals snake-like hotel for a Norwegian island

Snøhetta reveals snake-like hotel for a Norwegian island | Picto Communication Partner | Scoop.it
Architecture firm Snøhetta has unveiled images of a snake-like hotel that will wind across a rocky outcrop in Norway's Lofoten archipelago.

The site extends out to sea to the south and west, linking the contact between ocean and the tall, shielding mountains to the north and northwest. The location is spectacular, sunny, in the mighty landscape elements, yet in touch with old settlement and sheltered harbors.

Snøhetta has developed a project and looked at a number of factors: the landscape "critical load" vs. new construction, functional and technical aspects of access, infrastructure, ecology and sustainability, connection to outdoors areas and existing buildings. The main goal is to find the development patterns and shapes that trigger the functional, architectural and experiential triggers the plot's formidable potential. We think it will be essential to find a building program and a scale that "hits", both in terms of economy, market and individual experience opportunities.


Via Lauren Moss
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Guy Antognelli's curator insight, March 20, 1:38 AM

 

Nice

Frédéric Liégeois's comment, March 20, 2:08 AM
strange, isn't it?
Rescooped by Frédéric Liégeois from Environment & Sustainability
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Climate science settled: Earth is warming, climate stability is a thing of the past, and humans are responsible. Canada: No comment.

Climate science settled: Earth is warming, climate stability is a thing of the past, and humans are responsible. Canada: No comment. | Picto Communication Partner | Scoop.it

The Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, all 900 pages – will be officially tabled on Monday.  Meanwhile, the key chapters and the Summary for Policy Makers were released on Friday.

In response, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon said, “The heat is on.  We must act.”

US Secretary of State John Kerry said, “This is yet another wakeup call: Those who deny the science or choose excuses over action are playing with fire …. the response must be all hands on deck. It’s not about one country making a demand of another. It’s the science itself, demanding action from all of us.”

President Obama’s science adviser, Dr. John P. Holdren, said the report proves “that the kinds of harm already being experienced from climate change will continue to worsen unless and until comprehensive and vigorous action to reduce emissions is undertaken worldwide.”

And, in Canada, Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s science advisor said, …… Oooops. Harper eliminated that post. So no comment from that corner.


Via youthrage
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