Daily Archives: March 9, 2014

Water filtration using plant xylem

I wonder if there are any other substances removed or introduced into the water by plant material. This evaluation only focuses on removal of certain pathogens. Further, it appears to be very cumbersome to prepare and use this material.

journal.pone.0089934.g001 xylem

Boutilier MS, Lee J, Chambers V, Venkatesh V, Karnik R. Water filtration using plant xylem. PLoS One. 2014 Feb 26;9(2):e89934. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0089934.

Effective point-of-use devices for providing safe drinking water are urgently needed to reduce the global burden of waterborne disease. Here we show that plant xylem from the sapwood of coniferous trees – a readily available, inexpensive, biodegradable, and disposable material – can remove bacteria from water by simple pressure-driven filtration. Approximately 3 cm(3) of sapwood can filter water at the rate of several liters per day, sufficient to meet the clean drinking water needs of one person. The results demonstrate the potential of plant xylem to address the need for pathogen-free drinking water in developing countries and resource-limited settings.

Click here for full paper (Open Source).

“Sustainability” abuse begins to emerge

We hear periodically about how certain businesses have “embraced” sustainability. “Sustainability” is a buzz word…..indeed, a philosophy of this world. And many large corporations and large municipalities have made it the primary focus of their corporate culture and have saved or made lot’s of money doing so. (And they are free to do this.)

In general, no one would be against the idea in principle. In the past, every aspect of sustainability was called something else. Indeed, none of it is new, except for the term is now tied directly to advocacy for alternative energy. “Sustainability” now only means alternative energy, even if only other forms of energy are sustainable and the alternative forms are not. Of course, when it comes to specifics of “what does sustainability really mean for decision-making” progress can sometimes be made with a honest exchange of ideas but more often than not abuse begins to occur.

Here is a classic example of abuse. Agree with Mr. Henrik Madsen on climate and live by his values or go work elsewhere.

Ok, if you disagree with him or do not want to follow “values-de-jour” go work elsewhere. I am pro-choice on this matter. Employees always vote with their feet…..