Heavy rain could cause toxic waste spills at industrial sites in Ian’s path

Read the full story in the New York Times.

Heavy rainfall and high winds from Hurricane Ian could cause some of Florida’s industrial sites to spill dangerous contaminants into local waterways, environmentalists warned on Wednesday.

Two giant wastewater ponds at phosphate mines east of Tampa were of the greatest concern.

For Shein and other fast fashion offenders, ESG-washing is not the answer

Read the full story at GreenBiz.

If reports are to be believed, Chinese fast-fashion behemoth Shein is trying to make amends, shifting its image to justify a steadily dropping $100 billion valuation ahead of an ambitious IPO in 2024. It’s got a lot of work to do. While the company controls most of the category at 28 percent, racking in $15.7 billion in sales 2021, it’s also among the worst in environmental sustainability, social justice and corporate governance (ESG). To keep prices low, and to stay relatively free of regulation, it relies on suppliers in China, where the Uyghur populations suffer forced labor and dangerous working conditions. Also, with wasteful environmental practices ingrained in its model, fast fashion is so harmful that most regulators believe it is irredeemable. As the king of fast fashion, Shein has a lot to answer for.

Still, as the company hires new sustainability-focused leaders and promises a new conscious approach, its efforts to market an enthusiastic ambition to jump on the ESG bandwagon should put it on the path to redemption, right? Not quite.

Denim and beyond: Huue’s pursuit of ‘clean color’ dyes

Read the full story at GreenBiz.

Biotechnology company Huue (pronounced hue) is on a mission to mimic and replicate nature’s rainbow without the use of toxic chemicals.

Q&A: UW researchers develop a reactor that can destroy ‘forever chemicals’

Read the full story from the University of Washington.

“Forever chemicals,” named for their ability to persist in water and soil, are a class of molecules that are ever-present in our daily lives, including food packaging and household cleaning products. Because these chemicals don’t break down, they end up in our water and food, and they can lead to health effects, such as cancer or decreased fertility.

Last month, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed to give two of the most common forever chemicals, known as PFOA and PFOS, a “superfund” designation, which would make it easier for the EPA to track them and plan cleanup measures.

Cleanups would obviously be more effective if the forever chemicals could be destroyed in the process, and many researchers have been studying how to break them down. Now a team of researchers at the University of Washington has a new way to destroy both PFOA and PFOS. The researchers created a reactor that can completely break down hard-to-destroy chemicals using “supercritical water,” which is formed at high temperature and pressure. This technology could help treat industrial waste, destroy concentrated forever chemicals that already exist in the environment and deal with old stocks, such as the forever chemicals in fire-fighting foam.

The team published these findings on Sept. 7 in Chemical Engineering Journal.

UW News spoke with senior author Igor Novosselov, a UW research associate professor of mechanical engineering, to learn about the details.

Study tracks waterbird use of Chicago-area wetlands

Read the full story from the University of Illinois.

A three-year study in northeastern Illinois and northwestern Indiana found that – even at small scales – emergent wetlands or ponds support many wetland bird species. The study also found that, at least in the years surveyed, the level of urbanization had little effect on most of the studied species’ use of such sites, provided the right kinds of habitat were available.

This modular off-grid solar EV charger can be installed in just four hours

Read the full story at electrek.

Campbell, California-based solar-powered EV charger company Paired Power has just debuted a modular, off-grid electric vehicle charger that is powered by a solar canopy.

The company has called its new modular charger PairTree, and it’s a transportable solar canopy with built-in EV charging capabilities. It can be used off grid, but it can also be hooked into the grid if desired. 

Accelerating zero-carbon push could save globe $12 trillion: study

Read the full story at The Hill.

While switching to renewable energy sources is often framed as an expensive if necessary sacrifice, a new study suggests a transition away from fossil fuels will ultimately save the world’s economies trillions of dollars.

The study from Oxford University suggests that transitioning away from fossil fuels represents a “win-win-win,” researchers say, yielding bigger worldwide cost savings the faster it’s implemented.

From the lab to the battery start-up

Read the full story in Chemical & Engineering News.

Entrepreneurial researchers tell their stories about how they developed a lab discovery and turned it into a commercial battery.

SIU’s 2nd Saluki BioBlitz enlists citizen-scientists to survey wildlife on campus

Read the full story from Southern Illinois University.

Southern Illinois University Carbondale and the surrounding community are about to find out more about their wildlife “neighbors” as a researcher prepares a second public survey of the flora and fauna populating campus.

A closer look at whey protein phospholipid concentrate

Read the full story at Dairy Foods.

Whey protein phospholipid concentrate (WPPC), a low-value coproduct, is currently being examined as a source of nutritional and functional ingredients. WPPC contains high-value components, such as various types of proteins and phospholipids.