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Does Avatar’s environmental message accomplish what it should?

James’ Cameron’s Avatar may not have won for Best Picture at the Academy Awards this year, but it has received a few nods for its environmental message. It’s undeniable that Avatar is a movie that helps shed light on many global environmental issues, and in doing so, reaches a greater audience of people who watch it for the cinematography and leave the theaters enlightened.

Nuclear Japan: A pox on MOX?

MATSUYAMA, Japan — Japan is going "pluthermal" and anti-nuclear activists are up in arms. The term, coined by Japan, refers to using mixed-oxide (MOX) fuel containing plutonium in nuclear reactors, instead of normal uranium fuel. Ignoring months of protests and sit-ins, Japan's first nuclear reactor went "pluthermal" last December.

Kenya throws zebras to the lions

SOYSAMBU CONSERVANCY, Kenya — Hidden among the umbrella-shaped acacia trees are walls of dull tarpaulin which form a funnel toward the ramp of a truck that waits with its back door open. It is chilly and quiet in the break-of-dawn light. Khaki-clad wildlife rangers wait in silence clutching long switches hacked from trees. Suddenly the morning hush is shattered by the thumping blades of a helicopter swooping low over the trees, then the sound of dozens of panicked hooves battering the dusty earth.

Global Green Guide: the benefits of e-readers

Whether or not you’ve made the move from reading paper books to downloading your favorite novels on your electronic device, you’ve likely heard of the availably technology and contemplated it.

South Africa protects endangered cycads

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa — The thieves knew exactly what they were looking for when they broke into the Durban Botanic Gardens on a Saturday night. They smashed open the lock on a gate, drove past where security guards should have been patrolling and headed straight for some of the rarest varieties of cycads in the world. They roughly but selectively dug up 20 of the most highly endangered plants of a collection of 150, a haul worth $65,000, loaded them into their vehicle and rolled out.

Will compressed air run the cars of the future?

Green vehicle options are about to reach new levels in the United States.

Striking gold in Quebec

MALARTIC, Canada — Canada’s gold rush is in full swing. It’s boom time in Malartic, a sleepy, one-horse town in northwestern Quebec. Prospectors have struck gold and are digging an open-pit mine of monster proportions. With demand for the precious metal hitting new highs, the mine is expected to bring jobs, people and life to the depressed town (population 4,000). People who were sitting on billions of dollars worth of gold have been uprooted to a new residential area.

Does this winter’s weather mean global warming has ended?

Over the past few months, countries around the world have been facing extreme weather conditions. Many parts of the United States have had snow for the first time in decades. Northern states like New York have seen record-setting quantities that have rendered many residents housebound. Even London and other European cities where the winter months bring rain has had snowfall that rivals that of the more northern parts of North America.

Is a waterless car wash a big improvement?

Water waste is a huge environmental issue, and when it comes to car washes, so are the chemicals that ultimately find their way into waterways. Bayes Waterless Carwash proposes a solution to both of these issues. But is it really a big improvement?

Were the Olympics worth it for Vancouver?

VANCOUVER, Canada — Despite the golden glow of the hockey finale, despite the rousing closing ceremonies farewell, there is an ineffable sadness in the streets of Vancouver. And the airport is jammed with tens of thousands of weary people, seemingly desperate to get out of town.
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