pigs in pens
Environment Technology

Is methane capture from livestock good or bad?

Caption: Newer technology that has farmers and ranchers capturing methane from their livestock waste is better for the planet than not having it. Credit: Mark Stebnicki, Pexels. Dear EarthTalk: Is encouraging dairy farmers and cattle ranchers to capture methane gas from their livestock’s manure good or bad for the planet?— Phil Onorato, Pittsburgh, PA Methane […]

ozone hole
Environment Technology

Chemical ban is big win for environment

Caption: This visualization shows the hole in the ozone layer over the South Pole is getting smaller each year thanks to efforts by international negotiators back in the late 1980s. Credit: Stuart Rankin, FlickrCC. Dear EarthTalk: Has anyone calculated the positive health and/or economic impacts of international efforts to protect the stratospheric ozone layer beginning […]

People watching blimp take off
Environment Technology

Blimps make a comeback

Caption: Believe it or not, blimps are making a comeback as a green short hop commuter travel option. Dear EarthTalk: Is blimp travel really making a comeback? Is it eco-friendly? – J. Roe, Islip. NY The blimp, forever besmirched due to the Hindenburg explosion in 1937—when one of the first commercial blimps caught on fire—never […]

solar panels
Environment Technology

Solar farms spark controversy

Caption: Solar farms may be the next battleground for environmentalists. Credit: Pexels. Dear EarthTalk: Has there been any backlash against the installation of rooftop solar panels or the development of big solar farms across the U.S.?— B. Jackson, Longmeadow, MA Incentives like the Solar Investment Tax Credit and increased affordability in the cost of solar […]

Automation at ESS
Featured Oregon Technology

Utility-scale platform to help build clean energy

ESS Tech, Inc. (“ESS,” “ESS Inc.”) (NYSE: GWH), a Wilsonville, Oregon manufacturer of long-duration batteries for utility-scale and commercial energy storage applications, announced recentlythat it has entered into an agreement with Portland General Electric (PGE) in Oregon to test and demonstrate the ESS Energy CenterTM platform. The 3 MWh Energy Center is expected to come […]

space station
Environment Technology

Bezos envisions moving polluters to outer space

Bezos envisions moving polluters to outer space Caption: Artist concept of 3D printing with cementitious materials on the Moon. Credit: Greg Trent, Surface Construction. Dear EarthTalk: Is so-called “Off-Earth Manufacturing” really the environmental panacea that Jeff Bezos and other proponents say it is?  — M. Traney, Smithfield, RI In July 2021, Richard Branson rocketed into suborbital […]

black and white dog saves wildlife
Environment Technology Washington

Conservation dogs help endangered wildlife

Caption: “Pips” of Rogue Detection Teams was able to find larvae and larval poop of the endangered checkerspot butterfly for the Forest Service in Washington State in 2019. Credit: U.S. Forest Service- Pacific Northwest Region, FlickrCC. Dear EarthTalk: What are conservation dogs?— Jon Gretcham, Portland, OR Simply put, conservation dogs are canines specially trained in […]

Blue flames on gas stove
Environment Technology

Should we ditch our gas stoves?

Caption: If you are concerned about the health implications of indoor air pollution, maybe it’s time to go electric in the kitchen. Credit: Roddy Scheer Dear EarthTalk: Should we all be ditching our gas stoves in favor of electric models?— Mary R., San Francisco, CA Walking into your kitchen to make dinner appears relatively simple […]

Backyard wind turbine
Environment Technology

Backyard wind turbines seen as part of energy future

Caption:Backyard wind turbines could help us make the transition away from fossil fuels. Credit: Cowrin, FlickrCC. Dear EarthTalk: You see a lot of people putting solar panels on their homes these days, but windmills not so much. Is there any future for small residential wind turbines as we transition to more renewable forms of energy?— […]

Man pointing up
Environment Technology

XPRIZE launches $100 million climate change competition

Caption: XPRIZE founder Peter Diamandis has steered several competitions toward solving pressing environmental problems. Credit: XDRIVE Foundation. Dear EarthTalk: I’ve heard of XPRIZE, which funds innovations in space exploration technology. Is XPRIZE used to address climate change or other environmental problems?— J.D. via e-mail XPRIZE was launched in 1996 to spur innovation in the commercial […]