Read the full story from the American Chemical Society.
At the grocery store, most foods—meats, breads, cheeses, snacks—come wrapped in plastic packaging. Not only does this create a lot of non-recyclable, non-biodegradable waste, but thin plastic films are not great at preventing spoilage. And some plastics are suspected of leaching potentially harmful compounds into food. To address these issues, scientists are now developing a packaging film made of milk proteins—and it is even edible.
The researchers are presenting their work today at the 252nd National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS). ACS, the world’s largest scientific society, is holding the meeting here through Thursday. It features more than 9,000 presentations on a wide range of science topics.
NBC Learn, the educational arm of NBC News, is dedicated to making NBC News archival stories, images and primary source documents available on-demand to teachers, students, and parents. Sustainability related collections include:
Janine Benyus’ TED Talk (video embedded below), “Biomimicry in Action”, was one of the featured talks on NPR’s TED Radio Hour on Friday. The topic was The Power of Design.
Science Magazine’s Data Stories competition is still accepting votes for their People’s Choice award. The competition asked people to submit short-form (90 second) videos that use data visualizations to tell stories. View all of the submissions here.
February 3, 2016 — Contaminated Drinking Water in Flint, Michigan
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Michigan state officials testified at a hearing on lead contaminated drinking water in Flint, Michigan. Representative Dan Kildee (D-MI) was the first witness. A resident of Flint who first called the EPA to her home early in 2015 to test the water that had become discolored also appeared. Committee Chair Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) said his committee had issued subpoenas to three officials who refused to appear before his panel. including former Flint Emergency Manager Darnell Earley.
March 15, 2016 — Flint, Michigan Water Contamination
The House Oversight and Governmental Reform Committee held its second hearing on the contaminated drinking water in Flint, Michigan. Susan Hedman, former Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regional director, told committee members the lead contamination should have never happened, and that the EPA had nothing to do with the corrosive water. Committee Chair Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) argued that the EPA had the opportunity to make the appropriate response but did not. Flint’s former mayor and the city’s former emergency manager testified that they were not aware of lead in the water until January 2015. Ms. Hedman confirmed that corrosion control systems to reduce the lead were not put in place until December 9, 2015.
March 17, 2016 — Flint, Michigan Drinking Water Contamination
Gina McCarthy and Governor Rick Snyder (R-MI) testified at a hearing on the Safe Drinking Water Act and lead contamination of the water supply in Flint, Michigan. Governor Snyder apologized and said he was not aware that the water had dangerous levels of lead until October 2015. Ms. McCarthy defended the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), saying her agency did all it could do within the rule of law. During the hearing, several committee members called on both Governor Snyder and Ms. McCarthy to resign.
William McDonough discusses Cradle to Cradle, the Circular Economy and Design Innovation. December 16, 2015.