Tag: greenhouse gases

Living Climate Futures initiative showcases holistic approach to the climate crisis

The sun shone bright and warm on the Dertouzos Amphitheater at the Stata Center this past Earth Day as a panel of Indigenous leaders from across the country talked about their experiences with climate activism and shared their natural world philosophies — a worldview that sees humanity as one with the rest of the Earth. […]

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MIT J-WAFS announces 2022 seed grant recipients

The Abdul Latif Jameel Water and Food Systems Lab (J-WAFS) at MIT has awarded eight MIT principal investigators with 2022 J-WAFS seed grants. The grants support innovative MIT research that has the potential to have significant impact on water- and food-related challenges. The only program at MIT that is dedicated to water- and food-related research, […]

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On the road to cleaner, greener, and faster driving

No one likes sitting at a red light. But signalized intersections aren’t just a minor nuisance for drivers; vehicles consume fuel and emit greenhouse gases while waiting for the light to change. What if motorists could time their trips so they arrive at the intersection when the light is green? While that might be just […]

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Solar-powered desalination device wins MIT $100K competition

The winner of this year’s MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition is commercializing a new water desalination technology. Nona Desalination says it has developed a device capable of producing enough drinking water for 10 people at half the cost and with 1/10th the power of other water desalination devices. The device is roughly the size and weight […]

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Absent legislative victory, the president can still meet US climate goals

The most recent United Nations climate change report indicates that without significant action to mitigate global warming, the extent and magnitude of climate impacts — from floods to droughts to the spread of disease — could outpace the world’s ability to adapt to them. The latest effort to introduce meaningful climate legislation in the United […]

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What choices does the world need to make to keep global warming below 2 C?

When the 2015 Paris Agreement set a long-term goal of keeping global warming “well below 2 degrees Celsius, compared to pre-industrial levels” to avoid the worst impacts of climate change, it did not specify how its nearly 200 signatory nations could collectively achieve that goal. Each nation was left to its own devices to reduce […]

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Using plant biology to address climate change

On April 11, MIT announced five multiyear flagship projects in the first-ever Climate Grand Challenges, a new initiative to tackle complex climate problems and deliver breakthrough solutions to the world as quickly as possible. This article is the fourth in a five-part series highlighting the most promising concepts to emerge from the competition and the […]

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The Earth Is Facing a Nitrogen Shortage Due to Climate Change, Study Says

Florida brushfire. Image: Juan Silva via Getty Images ABSTRACT breaks down mind-bending scientific research, future tech, new discoveries, and major breakthroughs. Nitrogen is one of the most important elements for life on Earth: It’s the main component of the air we breathe, a key building block for proteins, and the magic ingredient in agricultural fertilizers that […]

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Ocean vital signs

Without the ocean, the climate crisis would be even worse than it is. Each year, the ocean absorbs billions of tons of carbon from the atmosphere, preventing warming that greenhouse gas would otherwise cause. Scientists estimate about 25 to 30 percent of all carbon released into the atmosphere by both human and natural sources is […]

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A better way to separate gases

Industrial processes for chemical separations, including natural gas purification and the production of oxygen and nitrogen for medical or industrial uses, are collectively responsible for about 15 percent of the world’s energy use. They also contribute a corresponding amount to the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. Now, researchers at MIT and Stanford University have developed a […]

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Setting carbon management in stone

Keeping global temperatures within limits deemed safe by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change means doing more than slashing carbon emissions. It means reversing them. “If we want to be anywhere near those limits [of 1.5 or 2 C], then we have to be carbon neutral by 2050, and then carbon negative after that,” says […]

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How to clean solar panels without water

Solar power is expected to reach 10 percent of global power generation by the year 2030, and much of that is likely to be located in desert areas, where sunlight is abundant. But the accumulation of dust on solar panels or mirrors is already a significant issue — it can reduce the output of photovoltaic […]

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Q&A: Randolph Kirchain on how cool pavements can mitigate climate change

As cities search for climate change solutions, many have turned to one burgeoning technology: cool pavements. By reflecting a greater proportion of solar radiation, cool pavements can offer an array of climate change mitigation benefits, from direct radiative forcing to reduced building energy demand. Yet, scientists from the MIT Concrete Sustainability Hub (CSHub) have found […]

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MIT Center for Real Estate launches the Asia Real Estate Initiative

To appreciate the explosive urbanization taking place in Asia, consider this analogy: Every 40 days, a city the equivalent size of Boston is built in Asia. Of the $24.7 trillion real estate investment opportunities predicted by 2030 in emerging cities, $17.8 trillion (72 percent) will be in Asia. While this growth is exciting to the […]

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Can the world meet global climate targets without coordinated global action?

Like many of its predecessors, the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland concluded with bold promises on international climate action aimed at keeping global warming well below 2 degrees Celsius, but few concrete plans to ensure that those promises will be kept. While it’s not too late for the Paris Agreement’s […]

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Reducing methane emissions at landfills

The second-largest driver of global warming is methane, a greenhouse gas 28 times more potent than carbon dioxide. Landfills are a major source of methane, which is created when organic material decomposes underground. Now a startup that began at MIT is aiming to significantly reduce methane emissions from landfills with a system that requires no […]

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Pricing carbon, valuing people

In November, inflation hit a 39-year high in the United States. The consumer price index was up 6.8 percent from the previous year due to major increases in the cost of rent, food, motor vehicles, gasoline, and other common household expenses. While inflation impacts the entire country, its effects are not felt equally. At greatest […]

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Overcoming a bottleneck in carbon dioxide conversion

If researchers could find a way to chemically convert carbon dioxide into fuels or other products, they might make a major dent in greenhouse gas emissions. But many such processes that have seemed promising in the lab haven’t performed as expected in scaled-up formats that would be suitable for use with a power plant or […]

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A dirt-cheap solution? Common clay materials may help curb methane emissions

Methane is a far more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, and it has a pronounced effect within first two decades of its presence in the atmosphere. In the recent international climate negotiations in Glasgow, abatement of methane emissions was identified as a major priority in attempts to curb global climate change quickly. Now, a […]

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