Daily Archives: July 11, 2013

Economic potential for farmers markets expands

Listen to the story from Great Lakes Echo.

As the summer weather gets nicer, farmers markets seem to be multiplying around the area. But it’s not as simple as just popping up tents and selling veggies.

Current State’s Peter Whorf speaks with Dru Montri, Director of the Michigan Farmers Market Association, to talk about market trends, realities, and the work behind the markets that go unseen.

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Posted by on July 11, 2013 in Agriculture, Green lifestyle


Minnesota posts new website mapping air quality

Read the full story in the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

The air around the Twin Cities and Rochester is pretty bad this week, thanks to a combination of heat, pollution, high barometric pressure and low winds.

And now, courtesy of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA), there is a website that can tell you just how bad.

The MPCA’s new Air Quality Index website provides current air quality conditions for nearly the entire state, along with maps, graphs, and daily and monthly data summaries for 25 cities and five different air pollutants.


Wildfire goes wild in Arizona

Read the full story in The Why Files.

As wildfires torch Western states, what is the role of global warming? Does hotter weather contribute to fires? Does the resulting carbon dioxide accelerate global warming? Could we see a vicious cycle of warming, fires and more warming?

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Posted by on July 11, 2013 in Climate change, K-12


Custom Aeroponics: Out of Thin Air

The Arizona State University Noble Science and Engineering Library has taken the idea of makerspaces and put a new spin on it.

They are currently showcasing Custom Aeroponics, a plant growing system developed by an ASU student and funded through Arizona State University’s Edson Student Entrepreneurship Initiative. Seeds were donated by NativeSeeds/SEARCH

Aeroponics involves misting the roots of a growing plant with a nutrient solution, which eliminates the need for soil or substrate. Plants are suspended and held in a netted planting cup on a faceplate. The interchangeable faceplate is mounted to a tank that protects the roots from damaging light and contains the misting nozzle. The nutrient solution is collected and reused, which  decreases the amount of wastewater and nutrients.

For more information about the project, see their LibGuide,project web site, and video.



Research project to test viability of biochar

Read the full story at Northern Ontario Business.

Collège Boréal and EACOM Timber Corp.’s Nairn Centre sawmill are collaborating on the school’s first applied research project on the analysis and use of wooden ash produced by the forest industry as charcoal for agricultural use (biochar).

The ashes from the biomass combustion, a source of energy for EACOM’s sawmill, will be analysed during the first phase of the research process. Various doses of ashes (biochar) will also be applied to soil samples to assess their effect on the growth of jack pine and birch seedlings. This laboratory test phase will eventually be followed by observations in the field, in Collège Boréal’s experimental forests.

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Posted by on July 11, 2013 in Biochar


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