Watch Glitter Dont Use It Scientist Calls for Ban on Sparkles

first_imgStay on target Watch: Dolphin Leaps Feet Away From Unsuspecting SurferNASA Says 2 Asteroids Will Safely Fly By Earth This Weekend All that glitters is not gold, according to scientists.More than an arts-and-crafts staple or shiny nightmare for festival clean-up crews, the reflective particles are also an ecological hazard.Environmental anthropologist Trisia Farrelly is calling for a ban on the plastic-based flecks, instead championing biodegradable versions made from materials like mica.Farrelly attracted attention over the summer when she spoke to online news aggregate Stuff about the harm caused to marine life by microplastics. In the months since, she’s been quoted by the BBC, New York Times, and National Geographic, among other international sources.The global interest in glitter has the scientist slightly baffled; the plastic-based product represents a small part of what she believes is a broader problem.“But Christmas is an ideal time to raise awareness about environmentally responsible production and consumption and the problems associated with microplastics,” Farrelly, a social scientist at New Zealand’s Massey University, said in a statement.“And if plastic-based glitter is the vehicle for opening more conversations, then I welcome that,” she added.I just want to say one word to you. Just one word. Are you listening? Microplastics(via maryamassimi/Pixabay)The U.S. National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration classifies microplastics as less than 5 mm in diameter. They are often found in cosmetics and clothing, as well as certain industrial processes.Primary microplastics are particles deliberately manufactured to be microscopic—i.e. those wee beads in your exfoliating facial scrub. Equally dangerous to aquatic and marine ecosystems are secondary microplastics, which form from the breakdown of larger debris.Somewhere in between is the byproduct of wear and tear: dust from car tires, synthetic textiles, ropes, paint, and waste treatment.Those fragments that don’t end up in every crevice of your body and every corner of the house often find their way into the environment. In particular, the world’s oceans.In some parts of the globe, Farrelly estimates microplastics outnumber plankton by six-to-one. Which is to say: a lot.And while a tiny percentage of plastics are biodegradable (but only under specific environmental conditions), most never go away. Some have sunk to the nethermost part of the seas—the 36,000-foot-deep Mariana Trench in the Pacific Ocean.I’m too shiny, watch me dazzle like a diamond in the rough(via XoMEoX/Wikimedia Commons)Modern glitter, invented by American machinist Henry Ruschmann in 1934, is usually manufactured from plastic—specifically polyethylene terephthalate (PET).Farrelly, from the School of People, Environment, and Planning at Massey’s Manawatū campus, studies the effects of endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) found in materials like PET.“There is a growing body of evidence to suggest that the toxins released by microplastics, and the additional pollutants absorbed by plastics in aquatic environments—what some marine scientists are now referring to as ‘poison pills’—can bioaccumulate up the food chain with the potential to disrupt the endocrine systems of sea life, and us, when we consume seafood,” she said.But Farrelly doesn’t want to dull anyone’s sparkle: According to the social scientist, there are plenty of non-plastic, environmentally friendly glitter alternatives.Get your guilt-free glam on with products from BioGlitz, Glitterevolution, and Eco Glitter Fun, which boast biodegradable formulas made from renewably sourced and compostable ingredients (mostly plants). Even everyone’s favorite natural cosmetics company Lush has swapped microplastics for synthetic mica and mineral glitter.Consumers, Farrelly believes, are becoming “more environmentally and justice-aware, and are calling for more honest, transparent labelling.”“They want to know what’s in their products and where they come from,” she continued. “Governments, too, need to play their role in ensuring producers are more responsible.”Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey.last_img read more

Star Wars Resistance is the Anime Sequel to Star Wars Rebels I

first_img Star Wars x Adidas Ultraboost Photos Have Leaked’Star Wars Pinball’ Has Your Favorite Brand in Ball Form Stay on target Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey.center_img The Star Wars and anime fandoms overlap considerably, so it’s no surprise that Disney is tapping into that with the upcoming follow-up to Star Wars Rebels. Star Wars Resistance will be an anime, which should be a far cry from the CG used to make Rebels.Star Wars Resistance will give us a look at the Resistance movement against the First Order which made its first appearance in The Force Awakens. Rebels, as fans will remember, filled in some of the gaps on what happened between the collapse of the Old Republic in Revenge of the Sith and the events of A New Hope. Resistance fills roughly the same purpose by bridging the mysterious gap between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens.Although Star Wars manga has been produced before, Resistance will be the first official anime project for the Star Wars franchise. The show will follow a Resistance agent named Kazuda Xiono as he spies on the First Order. There’s a lot of characters in the new trilogy who seem as though they would be much more interesting if some of their pasts were filled in and hopefully we’ll see more of how Snoke turned the First Order into a formidable fighting force.via LucasfilmThere have been no release dates set for Resistance yet, and we’ve only seen the barest hint at what the art style has to offer with the title card above being the only official art so far. Hopefully, they stick with a more hand-drawn look instead of overly relying on CG shots (like the revived Berserk series).With Episode IX, Han Solo: A Star Wars Story, a Live-Action TV show, another anthology film (plus more than likely haven’t been announced), another trilogy from Rian Johnson, a series of films from David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, and who knows what else on the way. So the foreseeable future is going to be positively saturated with Star Wars. I love Star Wars, but the whole thing is getting a bit too Marvel-paced with its release schedule to keep up with for me.last_img read more

Study Climate Change Affects Global Economic Inequality Too

first_imgStay on target Climate change affects more than just the environment: A Stanford University study shows global warming has increased economic inequality.While temperature fluctuations have enriched cool countries like Norway and Sweden, warmer nations such as India and Nigeria are suffering.“Our results show that most of the poorest countries on Earth are considerably poorer than they would have been without global warming,” lead study author and climate scientist Noah Diffenbaugh said in a statement. “At the same time, the majority of rich countries are richer than they would have been.”Based on 50 years of annual temperature and gross domestic product (GDP) measurements for 165 countries, researchers demonstrated that growth during warmer-than-average years has accelerated in cool nations and slowed in warm ones.Warming that has already happened has increased economic inequality around the world (via Stanford University)“The historical data clearly shows that crops are more productive, people are healthier, and we are more productive at work when temperatures are neither too hot nor too cold,” according to study co-author Marshall Burke, a Stanford assistant professor of Earth system science.“This means that in cold countries, a little bit of warming can help,” he said. “The opposite is true in places that are already hot.”Using climate models to isolate how much each country warmed due to human-induced climate change, researchers were able to estimate a range of outcomes, suggesting what each nation’s economic output might have been had temperatures not increased.“For most countries, whether global warming has helped or hurt economic growth is pretty certain,” Burke said, admitting that the data is less clear for countries in the middle latitudes, including the US, China, and Japan.“A few of the largest economies are near the perfect temperature for economic output,” he continued. “Global warming hasn’t pushed them off the top of the hill, and in many cases, it has pushed them toward it.”The gap between economic output of the world’s richest and poorest countries is 25 percent larger today than it would have been without global warming (via Stanford University)Things won’t stay this way forever, though: A large amount of warming in the future would mean a severe drop in productivity.Just ask Sudan, India, Nigeria, Indonesia, and Brazil, which saw a 25 to 36 percent decrease in per capita GDP from global warming between 1961 and 2010.“The more these countries warm up, the more drag there’s going to be on their development,” Diffenbaugh warned, emphasizing the importance of increased sustainable energy access for poorer countries.“Our finding that global warming has exacerbated economic inequality suggests that there is an added economic benefit of energy sources that don’t contribute to further warming,” he added.The full study was published this week in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.More on UN Report Urges Action on Environment, ClimateClimate Change Could Melt Tons of Human Poop at Denali National ParkThis $5.5 Million ‘Livable Yacht’ Lets You Ride Out Climate Change Amazon Employees Join Sept. 20 Global Climate WalkoutResearchers Transform CO2 Into Liquid Fuel last_img read more