Sunday, November 23, 2008
First, we still have the original idea of using water hyacinth to remove arsenic from water. There are several difficulties there. How much dried water hyacinth will absorb how much arsenic? Scientifically what are the isotherms that describe the sorptive behavior? What procedure can be worked out that would be effective in a non-lab setting? What is the best way to remove the arsenic-rich hyacinth? How does one dispose of the contaminated plant material? Culturally, would you drink water that have been mixed with powdered plants? As Elmo says, its not much different than drinking tea, is it? Maybe, maybe not.
Next, arsenic is not the only significant environmental problem in Bangladesh. Three others have been suggested: surface water pollution from tanneries, from textile dyers, and indoor air pollution from burning a variety of materials to provide cooking fires. Perhaps with much of the global community focused on the arsenic, we should tackle something else.
Third, what would it take to assist the Bangladeshi chemical community to build an environmental chemistry research and development centre? Rather than jumping in and jumping back out, how can we set up infrastructure that will train new Bangladeshi scientists, provide research space to current scientists with up to date technologies to study and make recommendations for improving the conditions in Bangladesh?
Fourth, can we set up a model semester abroad for science students in Bangladesh? Can we collaborate to the extent that US (and other) undergraduate students (graduate students also?) could go to Bangladesh and not miss out on their requirements for graduation. Students might study Bangladeshi language and culture, take a science class, and assist a graduate student or professor with a research project.
Mindmap added by Bego, 12/14/2008 (click to enlarge image):
Thursday, November 13, 2008
The 69-page decision described the Bush administration’s arguments as “weak,” “questionable,” “not sustainable,” and “not sufficient,” and rebuked EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson for failing to issue CO2 regulations, repeatedly recommending an “action of nationwide scope.”
Click on the title for the link.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
November 6, 2008 | Transcript: The World of Good company takes a different approach to shopping -- by encourage mainstream retailers like Whole Foods and eBay to take a build ethnical consumer experiences. Spencer Michels profiles Priya Haji, the CEO and co-founder of World of Good, and examines how the company sells messenger bags, handicrafts and other products with the aim of employing people in impoverished parts of the world and spreading social awareness among U.S. consumers.
Sunday, November 09, 2008
Following The Trail Of Toxic E-Waste, 60 Minutes Follows The Trail Of Toxic E-Waste, Illegally Shipped From The U.S. To China - CBS News
This is an important story in which I believe Chemists Without Borders must become involved. Lives are at stake and it is our chemistry that is jeopardizing them. Please watch this video segment and respond with thoughts on where we can make a difference. Thank you.
Monday, November 03, 2008
As a special bonus, the second half of the program is about a play currently on Broadway, about the Black Watch. The Black Watch is a Scottish regiment that has existed for hundreds of years, and it is often the Black Watch whom the British send in to battle first. This play, which is very moving, addresses their recent deployment into Iraq. Since I am from Scotland, and lived in Fife whence comes the Black Watch, this is a story very close to my own heart. I would be very happy to hear from others your opinions on both segments.
Thanks for reading.