Today’s Solutions: September 22, 2021

Reducing the amount of heat-trapping emissions we are putting into the atmosphere is imperative in order to reverse climate change. But scientists and campaigners have warned repeatedly that governments are dangerously falling behind in meeting the rate of carbon emission reductions needed to prevent an environmental catastrophe. The good news is that researchers are continuously working on developing state-of-the-art technologies and practical solutions to tackle this global environmental challenge. Lately, for instance, scientists have been working on what they say is the world’s first “biosolar leaf”, which they claim can mop up carbon dioxide and discharge oxygen into the atmosphere more efficiently than a typical tree. According to the developers, the novel technology can do the work of 100 trees using the surface area of just one tree. The device works by cultivating minute plant life – microalgae and phytoplankton – on solar panel structures that can be installed on land, buildings, and roofs. On top of that, it can also clean the air of carbon dioxide, release more oxygen into the atmosphere, and grow nutritious plant protein at the same time. The initiative is the product of a partnership between Imperial College, London and startup Arborea, and has recently been rolled out at one of the university’s campuses.

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