Two beekeepers in Australia, Cedar Anderson and Stuart Anderson, have invented a new sort of hive that could revolutionize Beekeeping traditional methods. They have invented the FLOWHive, a special hive that can put your honey “on tap” directly from your hive box. It’s main benefit being that it can pour honey out of the combs without upsetting the bees. The FLOWhive contains special inserts that will fit into normal hives or, if you get the whole FLOWhive system, you will have their special wooden outer box complete with windows and access points that will ensure you know exactly when to harvest the honey and have a full supply as soon as it is ready to go.
There are a lot of skeptics in their beekeeping community who say it is unlikely to work without a lot of mess and cleanup needed. Some comment in the beekeeping forums that they would rather wait and see before jumping to buy this sort of invention.
The key to the system is a special imitation of the traditional comb that splits apart when you turn the tap on the back of the hive. The inventors say that they can get their honey without the bees even noticing that they are there. The stress on the bees is greatly reduced and the work of harvesting honey is made super easy and simple.
The video on you tube shows an appealing looking box with two spouts on the back that literally pour the honey out like beer on tap. The rest of the requirements of beekeeping apply as per usual; it is only the method of harvesting that is affected. So beginner beekeepers will still need to learn all the basics of maintaining a healthy hive. It’s a wonder that this hasn’t already been invented years ago!
The Andersons are putting their invention on Indiegogo on Feb 23 2015 and hope that people with support them in their quest to build a manufacturing production line for their FLOWhive to be shipped around the world. They ask that you go to their Facebook page and watch the video and click “like” if you like their idea. The buzz needs to get out there – if this invention works as claimed then I will be in line to get one for sure. It’s a great idea and worth checking out. They have a video that shows their hive in action and also a website with a FAQ to answer all the basic questions about the different configurations of their products. It is homey yet professional and I am sure if they are successful with their Indiegogo crowd funding they will be on the road to a business boon for beekeeping. They have over 88 thousand likes on their facebook page already so it seems the support is likely to be there. Who wouldn’t want fresh honey on tap?
There is no shortage of articles, books and videos about ‘How to Go Viral,” but what do you do when your little hobby turns into a an instant viral sensation? Sonia, from Tasmania, loved dolls as a kid and now, as an adult, discovered the pleasure of recycling old, discarded dolls and giving them a natural makeover. In that fertile soil of playful creativity and simple frugality, a seedling of a company grew. Tree Change Dolls had only 12 dolls, but a few clever photos and a healthy dose of shares resulted in a viral forest.
Sonia started out by de-glamourizing some used Bratz dolls (removed their makeup) and turned to her knitting genius mother to create some the simple custom fashions. This little kitchen table hobby soon turned into an internet maelstrom of cheers for this lone mum from down-under who accomplished what the big dollmakers like MGA Entertainment (makers of the hyper-sexualized Bratz dolls) seem to have missed. Girls love dolls that actually look like real people. Watch this well-done video that may just set the doll kingdom on its tiny plastic head. Best of luck to Sonia and her new company, Tree Change Dolls as she grows a business that makes a difference.
The IKEA Group announced today that it had purchased it’s second wind farm in the United States from Apex Clean Energy: a 165-megawatt wind farm in Cameron County, Texas.
This represents the single largest renewable energy investment made by the IKEA Group globally to date. The wind farm will contribute significantly to the IKEA Group 2020 goal of producing as much renewable energy as the total energy the company consumes globally. The Cameron Wind farm is expected to be fully operational in late 2015.
Earlier this year IKEA Group announced its first U.S. wind farm purchase located in Hoopeston, Illinois. The Cameron Wind farm will be more than one-and-a-half times the size of the Hoopeston project.
IKEA Group has now committed to own and operate 279 wind turbines in nine countries, and will invest a total of $1.9 billion in wind and solar power up to the end of 2015. IKEA has also taken steps to further the development of a low-carbon economy by supporting key initiatives including the People’s Climate March, UN Climate Summit, RE100, and the Climate Declaration.
“Apex is excited to partner with IKEA once again to bring clean, renewable energy from wind to market in the U.S.,” added Apex President, Mark Goodwin. “Both companies understand that this abundant resource is great for the planet, great for our business and great for our shared future.”
New York City was first with it’s No-Idling laws, but the UK, it seems, won’t settle for #2.
Unless of course it’s the #2 (Human waste) that just happens to be fueling the first-of-its-kind city bus. The 40-seater Bio-Bus runs on fuel generated from treated sewage and food waste and helps improve urban air quality as it produces fewer emissions than traditional diesel engines. The bus can travel up to 200 miles on a full tank of gas generated at Bristol sewage treatment works – a plant run by GENeco, a subsidiary of Wessex Water. Up to 10,000 passengers are expected to travel on the Bio-Bus each month.
It’s not petrol, bio-diesel or natural gas. It’s Biomethane, and can even be used to power up to 8,500 homes, and although the bus’s graphics seem to imply it’s a moving shitter, the fuel is actually a product of Bristol sewage treatment, which treats around 75 million cubic meters of sewage waste and 35,000 tons of food waste through a process known as anaerobic digestion. The waste is collected from households, supermarkets and food manufacturers every year.
“GENeco Bio-Bus is an excellent demonstration of biomethane’s unique benefits; decarbonizing areas other renewables can’t reach,” says Charlotte Morton, chief executive of the Anaerobic Digestion & Bioresources Association (@adbioresources). “A home-generated green gas, biomethane is capable of replacing around 10% of the UKs domestic gas needs and is currently the only renewable fuel available for HGVs.
Although the Bio-Bus is new, in 2010, GENeco powered a car on biomethane produced during the sewage treatment process. The Bio-Bug was used in various trials to see how viable it was to power a vehicle on sewage gas.
By Amanda Crater for GreenBusinesses.com (watch video below)
This can’t be good. News broke this week about a mysterious virus affecting millions of starfish along the West Coast from Mexico to Alaska. “Sea Star Wasting Syndrome” has been decimating more than 20 species of starfish for about a year, and scientists this week discovered the culprit which has been widely reported on.
Marine biology researchers investigating the virus linked to the “wasting” deaths of countless starfish are looking at what role environmental causes might play in the massive die-off. Scientists have identified the specific virus responsible for the ongoing devastation of starfish along the Pacific Coast of Canada, the United States, and Mexico, as reported by BoingBoing.net. The Seattle Times did an in-depth report that said, “[I]t remains unclear if the pathogen’s current deadly spread is part of a complex natural cycle — or whether blame for this massive die-off is linked in some way to climate change, souring seas or other harm humans have inflicted on the ocean. Either way, the gruesome deaths are still spreading, confounding scientists and threatening to fundamentally transform marine systems along thousands of miles of Pacific Ocean coastline. This is the sea-star-removal experiment of the century. It’s pretty staggering,” said C. Drew Harvell, a marine epidemiologist from Cornell University based at Friday Harbor Labs on San Juan Island. “The ecological impact is going to be huge.And researchers still have no clue when the dying might end.”
From Mexico to Alaska, starfish have been mysteriously melting for more than a year. When a starfish first gets sick, its arms pretzel up and white lesions form on its skin. Next, the starfish, normally plush with water absorbed to keep its shape, starts to deflate. Then suddenly, its limbs begin falling off. Once symptoms start, it can take only a fewdays for the starfish to disintegrate and die.
The illness has been dubbed “sea star wasting disease,” and it emerged and spread rapidly along the Pacific coast last year. But marine biologists only had a few hunches — global warming, perhaps? — as to what was causing the deaths of millions of these animals.
Now, a massive new study has narrowed down the cause of what’s liquefying this lynchpin species. The findings, from a diverse group of invertebrate biologists, geneticists, statisticians, veterinarians and virologists, were published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
It’s a virus that’s sweeping the starfish, researchers say. In fact, it’s the first starfish virus ever discovered.