Friday, November 23, 2012

Dettifoss - The Most Powerful Waterfall in Europe - Rte 864 - Iceland

Dettifoss is a waterfall in Vatnajökull National Park in Northeast Iceland, and is the most powerful waterfall in Europe. It is situated on the Jökulsá á Fjöllum river, which flows from the Vatnajökull glacier and collects water from a large area in Northeast Iceland. The falls are 100 m wide and have a drop of 45 m down to the Jökulsárgljúfur canyon. It is the largest waterfall in Europe in terms of volume discharge, having an average water flow rate of 193 m3/s [Source: Wikipedia]. It generates a plume of water spray that can be seen several kilometers away.

Monday, November 19, 2012

7 Wonder Foods With Healing Power

Broccoli: Including broccoli in your diet can help you boost your immune system and improve bone health too. The vegetable fights cancer and tumor development in your body. It is a storehouse of vitamin A, E, K, C and B6. 
 Kiwi: Might appear to be a small fruit, but this tiny little fruit contains ounces of Vitamin C, fiber and potassium. Eating kiwis can avert the risk of suffering from grave illness like cancer, stroke, heart attacks and respiratory disorders. It has the power of healing wounds; sores and also repairing damaged cells.
 Carrots: This orange coloured vegetable is an excellent source of antioxidants that help lessening the risk of a number of types of cancers and heart related disorders. The Vitamin A that the vegetable contains promotes the health of the eye. Apart from this, carrots contain calcium, potassium, fiber and Vitamin C.
 Guavas: Guavas are known to contain the most amount of lycopene that fights with cancer. This antioxidant also protects the body from free radicals that are known to affect the arteries, and nervous system. Eating this fruit can be advantageous for the skin and also while you are suffering from diarrhea, diabetes and fever.
 Cabbage: Cabbage contains vitamin K, B6 and C, fiber, folate and manganese. The consumption of the vegetable will not only strengthen your bones but also do wonders to treat allergic reactions, inflammation, varicose veins and also fight a number of cancers. Consuming a healthy diet with super foods can promise a healthy and fit life.
 Cherries: This teeny red fruit is a small pack of abundant nutrients. It contains fiber, Vitamin C and is free of sodium and fat. Studies have also shown that the fruit has anti-aging properties. Cherries are also packed with antioxidants that reduce heart diseases and arthritis.
Spinach: This green leafy vegetable is a wonder food for not only your vision but also your brain. The vegetable contains Vitamin A, C, K, iron, magnesium, folate and calcium. The range of nutrients protects your body from a number of diseases like cancer, heart attacks amongst others. Photo by Thinkstock

Source : HERE

Friday, November 2, 2012

Sweden Wants Your Trash

Recycle bins in Sweden

Sweden, the birthplace of Nobel Prize, H&M, Ericsson and IKEA, is in a bit of unexpected troubles: the squeaky clean Scandinavian nation of more than 9.5 million has run out of garbage! The landfills have been tapped dry and the rubbish reserves depleted. While to the rest of the world, this may seem like a positive, even enviable, predicament for a country to be facing, but for the Swedes, they are now forced to import more trash from neighboring countries.

Yes, Sweden is so trash-strapped that it is importing 800,000 tons of rubbish annually from other countries.

You see, as the instituting nation for Nobel Prize, Sweden prioritizes science and technologies, allocating over 3.5% of its GDP to research & development (R&D) every year, the second-highest in the world only after Israel. As a result, it tops other European countries in the number of published scientific works per capita.

Streets of Sweden, all clean, run out of garbage

Equipped with advanced scientific and technological feats, the Swedish engineering sector, responsible for 50% of the country's output and exports, is world-renowned. For a small country (in terms of population), it produced Ericsson, the world's largest mobile telecommunications equipment maker; IKEA, the world's no.1 furniture retailer; Tetra Pak, the world's top food packaging company. Not to mention other unconventional entities such as The Pirate Bay, which is the world's leading facilitators of illegal downloading.

The high-tech, knowledge-intensive and export-oriented manufacturing economy gave Sweden the world's eighth wealthiest per capita income.

One unique character of the Swedes is that they are big on recycling. The Arab oil embargo that resulted in the 1973 oil crisis strengthened Sweden's commitment to decrease dependence on imported fossil fuels and free itself from the shackles of Middle East. Since then, the country has made numerous energy and environmental breakthroughs. In 2005, Sweden set a goal to become the world's first practically oil-free economy by 2020, with aim to break human's dependency on oil.

That is unsurprising, consider that Sweden is rich in timber, hydropower, iron ore, uranium and other minerals, but just lack significant oil and coal deposits.

Sweden's waste recycling program turned out to be so wildly successful that 96% of the country's garbage is now recycled, compared to the pale 34% in the United States. The remaining 4% unrecycleable materials get landfilled. This mean Sweden utilizes almost all its trash for other useful purposes, and therefore is now facing issues of citizens not generating enough rubbish. A very special problem in this world indeed.

Swedish waste incinerator plant at night

Known as the "waste-to-energy" incinerator, the technology was first introduced in Sweden in 1904. The incinerator uses heat generated from burning the waste to turn water into steam for power, including heating and electricity. As of now, waste incineration provides heat and electricity for more than 20% of the homes in Sweden. By contrast, it powers only about 0.3% of homes in the U.S. 

The best thing is: neighboring Norway pays Sweden to take its excess garbage, something Sweden burns and convert to heat and electricity. It means Sweden gets paid to generate its own electricity, but all these ain't enough.

Catarina Ostlund, a senior advisor for the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency, said: "We have more capacity than the production of waste in Sweden and that is usable for incineration. (Aside from Norway) I hope that we will also get the waste from Italy or from Romania or Bulgaria or the Baltic countries because they landfill a lot," Catarina told media agency PRI. "They don’t have any incineration plants or recycling plants, so they need to find a solution for their waste."

Heaps of garbage in Naples, Italy. Sweden hopes it can get its hands on these

The Swedes have also made incineration far greener since the 80s, when limits on emissions were tightened. According to a report released by the country's waste management association, Avfall Sverige, since that time incineration emission levels have dropped by between 90 and 99 percent because of better waste sorting technologies.

Byproducts of incineration include ash and flue gases, which both contain harmful substances like dioxin. These are now largely cleaned out by the Swedes. Dust is passed through an electrostatic precipitator to give the particles a negative electric charge. These are then attracted to positively charged metal plates, shaken off, collected and taken to an ash silo. 

The gases are washed out with water that contains lime, something reacts with the gases and removes them. This is done several times to remove different things - first heavy metals, then acids, sulphur dioxide and the remainder. Finally, a catalytic convertor removes nitrous oxides by passing the remaining flue gases through a porous material and converting them to nitrogen. With those, Sweden makes burning clean.

If everyone adopts the Swedish model, river and ocean garbage may be cleared pretty soon

At the moment, we live in a world where nearly 70% of deep sea Arctic creatures are in contact with human trash and where garbage are dumped into oceans around the world. With Sweden leading the way in waste management, this may soon changed. "I would say maybe in the future, the waste will be valued even more," Catarina said. "So maybe you could sell your waste, because there will be a shortage of resources within the world."

One day, perhaps Italy, Norway, and other countries will start the initiatives on waste-to-energy. Until then, Sweden is happy to be the garbage man of Europe.


via : LINK