Our Individual Contribution to Global Warming

Research, published in the journal Science, analysed the declining extent of Arctic sea ice from 1953 to 2015 and found it tracked the emissions of CO2 from fossil fuel burning and other human activities. The relationship fits well with the underlying physics.

As a result, it is possible to calculate how much Arctic sea ice is lost as a result of an individual’s emissions. The average annual emissions of a citizen of the 35 rich nations in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) is 10 tonnes per year, leading to 30 sq m of ice being lost. Citizens of the US, Canada and Australia have a higher carbon footprint – about 16 tonnes – each causing almost 50 sq m of ice loss per year. In the UK, the average emissions are 7.5 tonnes per year, meaning 22.5 sq m of ice loss.

So we should all do our best to reduce our carbon footprint, every little helps.


Dyson to attract engineers to Engineering degree

James Dyson will open The Dyson Institute of Technology in autumn 2017 to try to address the shortages in engineers..The £15m institute will be based at Dyson’s campus in Malmesbury in Wiltshire and will offer a four-year engineering degree in partnership with the University of Warwick. Students will be paid a salary while studying and will not have to pay tuition fees

Dangers of smoking

People who smoke a pack of cigarettes each day for a year develop on average 150 extra mutations in their DNA in every lung cell, and nearly 100 more DNA mutations than usual in each cell of the voice box, researchers found. More still build up in the mouth, bladder, liver and other organs. Some 70 chemicals in tobacco smoke are known to cause cancer, some damaging DNA directly or changing the ways cells function, but the more mutations in the DNA, the more likely the cell could turn cancerous.


Kidney stones? Try a roller coaster ride!

Two researchers in the US rode a theme park roller coaster with a mock-up of a kidney to test if thrill rides can dislodge kidney stones! They did this after several people reported that  they had passed a kidney stone after one of these rides, and yes, the fake kidney did pass a stone – after the 20th ride!