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Links for 2020-03-10

  • Trees on commercial UK plantations ‘not helping climate crisis’

    “There is no point growing a lot of fast-growing conifers with the logic that they sequester carbon quickly if they then go into a paper mill because all that carbon will be lost to the atmosphere within a few years,” said Thomas Lancaster, head of UK land policy at the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB), which commissioned the report. “We should not be justifying non-native forestry on carbon grounds if it’s not being used as a long-term carbon store.”
    Absolutely. Commercial forestry is not going to help address the climate change problem.

    (tags: business economics environment climate-change forestry trees coillte)

  • low-cost mechanical ventilator prototype

    a team of students from MIT has devised a better way to keep patients breathing in places that lack standard mechanical ventilators, or during times of emergency such as pandemics or natural disasters, when normal hospital resources may be overextended. They have designed a system that uses the same widely available manual pump — the same type used for the farmer in India. The new system encases the pump in a plastic box with a battery, motor and controls to take the place of the manual compression process.
    This article from 2010 notes ‘a U.S. government study in 2005 found that in a worst-case pandemic scenario, this country alone might need more than 700,000 mechanical ventilators, while only 100,000 are now in use.’

    (tags: ventilators covid-19 breathing healthcare hardware mit ambu-bag)

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