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Global Briefs Archive

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Robot Roomies

Emerging technologies may provide mental enrichment, fun, companionship and health reminders to the many seniors that live alone.

Tree Tally

By digitalizing photographs and other museum records, scientists are closing in on the number of tree species left to be discovered in the Amazon rainforest.

Animal Smarts

Scientists are discovering that chimps anticipate events, zebrafish form friendships, and birds guide humans hunting for beehives.

Senior Sisterhood

Cohousing developments for older women are being created in the United Kingdom and United States to replace retirement homes that encourage dependency.

Tiny Baubles

As many as 51 trillion particles of discarded plastic lie on the ocean floor, threatening marine life globally.

Erase E-Waste

Instead of trashing or trading in old smartphones and other electronics, you can donate them to worthy causes that either give them away or recycle them.

Wine Worry

Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide glyphosate, which harms both soil and human health, has been found in 10 of 10 California wines tested, including organic ones.

Faster Rescues

Artificial intelligence is helping scientists to track and manage wildlife and to rescue people trapped by floods and earthquakes.

Landfill Eulogy

Sweden’s waste-to-energy plants are so efficient that it has closed many landfills and actually imports trash to burn from other European countries.

Humpback Holler

Humpback whales that leap out of the water are making a big splash to communicate with distant pods, Australian researchers have found.

Pedestrian Power

Las Vegas has arranged to install some streetlights that will be powered by pedestrians walking on kinetic energy pads on the sidewalk.

Window Pain

As many as one billion migrating birds die annually when they collide with glass windows in the United States.

Get Outside

REI, the outdoor outfitter, is closing its stores on Black Friday and urging Americans to hit the trail instead of the shopping mall that day.

Oil Spoil

Thrown-out cooking grease can suffocate animals, befoul shorelines and clog water treatment plants, but disposing of it properly protects both the environment and home plumbing.

Getting Greener

Wind, solar, hydro and wood pellet burning generated 50.7 percent of the United Kingdom’s electricity on June 7, a significant marker of in use of renewable energy sources.

Eco Sneakers

With a compostable sneaker made of cotton and corn, Reebok is moving to reduce the negative impact of shoes on the environment.

Saving Salmon

In response to a Native American tribal lawsuit, a court has ordered Washington State to remove culverts that block salmon from passing beneath roads.

Resource Saver

Building biodegradable bricks built with sand and bacteria depositing chemicals similar to the way coral grows is proving to be more energy efficient than cement manufacturing.

American Roots

In a move respectful of Native American history, some Oklahoma communities have changed Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples’ Day.

Migrating Trees

Three-quarters of American tree species have shifted to the West since 1980 due to dryer conditions in the East and changing rainfall patterns.

Fare Price

With strategies ranging from flying off-hours to clearing cookies from your computer, you can rack up savings on airfare.

Wildlife Wipeout

More than a million birds and bats are killed annually by wind turbines, but fatalities are cut if the turbines are located offshore and are turned off during low wind speeds.

Fast Foodies

The journal Pediatrics reports that children under the age of 2 are more likely to eat French fries than healthy vegetables on any given day and many eat no veggies at all.

Mold Gold

Instead of burning fallen tree leaves or carting them to the landfill, we can use them as mulch to enrich the soil and discourage pests.

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