Articles Posted in the Green News category

Stressed forest plants emit their own form of aspirin

September 19, 2008
Posted in Green News

Plants in a forest respond to stress by producing a chemical form of aspirin, scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in the United States have discovered.

The plants were found to emit the chemical methyl salicylate, which is a form of acetylsalicylic acid, or aspirin, into the atmosphere in significant quantities in response to drought, unseasonable temperatures, or other stresses.

NCAR scientist Thomas Karl, who led the study, and his colleagues speculate that the methyl salicylate has two functions. One is to stimulate something analogous to an immune response to help the plants both resist and recover from disease.

The other may be a way for a stressed plant to communicate to neighbouring plants, warning them of the threat. Read more

Book lovers can green up their act

March 22, 2008
Posted in Lifestyle

ecolibrislogo-new.jpgEvery year about 20-million trees are cut down to produce the virgin paper for books sold in the United States alone, according to eco-entrepreneur Raz Godelnik. This is a sobering thought for those of us who can’t leave a bookshop empty-handed.

Godelnik and his partners have come up with a way to help book lovers reduce their environmental footprint a little. Last year they launched a company called Eco-Libris that helps people plant a tree for every book they read.

Their plan was to raise awareness to the destructive environmental impacts of using paper for the production of books and provide people with an affordable and easy way to do something about it, Godelnik said. “We strive for a world where reading books doesn’t contribute to deforestation and global warming. Planting trees is just the first step towards the day the book publishing industry will be truly sustainable.” Read more